Hitting the shelves tomorrow is Brian Michael Bendis final issue on All New X-Men (Which has been one of my favorite Marvel Now titles), and with the impending end to the series, one of the original X-Men, and my favorite character, Bobby Drake also known as Ice Man, has come out of the closet and is now a member of the LGBT community of Marvel Comics.
According to a page of the comic that leaked last night online, Bobby outs himself as a homosexual while having a conversation with Jean Grey. He talks about how is older self (present day Ice-Man) doesn’t seem to be gay, and that maybe 1960’s Bobby is just bisexual, in which Jean responds with “More… full gay.” And this leads 60’s Bobby to think that maybe present day Bobby can’t handle being both gay AND mutant. I think this will definitely leave fans and the comic book community talking.
I 1,000% support this. I am a “equalist”, a feminist, and a supporter of the LGBT community. I am ecstatic that there is a new relatable character in the comic community for any youngster struggling to find an identity in comics. I think this is a great move for Marvel, now one of my closest friends, Clay, has another character he can relate to, and hopefully this will help him get more into comics. He has never been much of an X-Men fan, but maybe this will be a stepping stone into a series that I love and am invested so much into.
Since I was a little kid, The X-Men have always been my favorite superheroes, and of all the X-Men, Bobby Drake has always been my favorite. He’s the one I relate to the most. I’m a white, straight, young adult male in America, who has a sense of humor and most of the time I have no clue what’s going on. So for the longest time I’ve related to Bobby (Though I have never done terrible terrible things that caused me to loose my sense of humor and humanity, X-Men New Apocalypse was a dark time…). When I heard the news that Bobby was coming out, I was both happy and shocked. I think what shocked me the most is, Iceman and his relationship with Kitty Pryd has always been a very important aspect to both characters.
You might be wondering, “If you 1000% support this, why are you shocked?” Well, because the Ice Man I know isn’t gay. I still love Ice Man, I will support Ice Man as an LGBT character, and he will always remain my favorite X-Men. This for me, feels like a family member has come out of the closet, and I have never had a family member, or a friend, come out. My friend Clay was already out by the time we became friends, so I didn’t have to “process” any news or anything like that. I can’t stress enough, this DOES NOT bother me. I SUPPORT THIS. It’s just a very interesting thing to process, and yes, Marvel characters have come out of the closet such as Jean-Paul Beaubier (AKA Northstar) and Benjamin Deeds (AKA Morph), and both happen to be X-Men.
I think it’s extremely important for X-Men to include LGBT characters, specially since the characters were created to help address racism and social issues. Racism isn’t as widely spread as it once was, but todays major social issue is the LGBT community and Marvel is making great strides in the right direction with this topic. With all that being said, the coming out of Northstar and Morph didn’t affect me at all. They were sideline characters and it was a wonderful wedding for Northstar (see Astonishing X-Men #51). But this feels different, because it’s a character I love dearly. My view of Ice Man has not changed. I don’t dislike him now, and I don’t like him any more then I did before. He’s the same Ice Man he’s always been, and he’ll always be the same Ice Man.