The world of comic books is becoming more inclusive. While discussions around representation continue to be controversial, both DC and Marvel are making strides forward in terms of increasing minority representation on their rosters. Now, DC is taking a big step by giving queer superhero couple Midnighter and Apollo their own series. This will be the first time a gay male pair have headlined an entire independent storyline in the history of comics.
The costumed crusader duo has already had three issues of adventures released. Even cooler, the series is written by the openly bi-sexual Steve Orlando. “People of all types flock to comics because they tell us no matter how mundane or arduous our life is, there’s always that glimmer of hope that our life can be mythic,” he says. “But those mythic moments are not reserved for the mainstream. More queer characters are needed in the spotlight because we all deserve a chance to know we can be heroes too.”
“I think Midnighter and Apollo are more important than ever right now,” he adds. “We need a middle finger to those people who are trying to hurt us. That’s who these characters can be and what they do. We need icons, people who stand up to the type of things that are trying to push us down. Now is the perfect time for that to be a gay couple who is looking evil right in the eye and saying that no matter what comes against them or who tries to hurt them, they’re not backing down.”
Orlando will also be at the helm of DC's reboot of Justice League of America, which he promises will have a similarly inclusive lineup. He's hoping his works “redefine what heroism looks like."
“We take a lot of values in our lives from our heroes in fiction, and in these stories we get to be those heroes,” he says. “We’re not the ones who are bashed, and the straight hero gets to step in and save us. That time is over. More than anything else, what I hope people take away from these comics is that if we fight hard enough, evil answers to us, not the other way around.”