Hey hey hey, it’s Kate here again to give you the comics news round-up for the first week of June aka Pride Month. And while I, like other queer people, are queer the other 11 months of the year as well, Pride Month has become known for one thing other than the annual queer/kink discourse, which is, the question every queer person must ask themselves:
Do I buy the rainbow/queer/pride-themed merchandise from a corporation who ignores my existence the other 11 months of the year and then only pays lip service for Pride month because it would be bad business otherwise?
There is no singular answer to this, even if there seems to be an increasingly generational divide. As an elderly millennial queer who remembers when we used to read/watch/consume hugely problematic media just to see a gay person, I am still just happy to be targeted as a demographic one month of the year with rainbow stuff.
For people like me, great news! DC and Marvel want our money!
DC Comics has their line of Pride variant covers featuring some of our favorite queer artists: Kevin Wada’s Wonder Girl is frankly stunning, and Kris Anka’s Harley & Ivy? Gorgeous. But it was fun that this year there are SO MANY COVERS I got to see work by artists I’d never heard of before, like Travis G. Moore’s Nightwing variant, and David Talaski’s Superman. That Superman cover is probably my favorite of the lot, so naturally TFAW isn’t carrying it on their website.
Marvel has also expanded the number of Pride variant covers using a few strategies. First, Phil Jimenez drew a series of variant covers across several titles, each one featuring a different queer character. Highlights include my boys Hulkling and Wiccan, my gal America Chavez, and my favorite bisexual disaster, Daken. But that’s not all! There’s also a series of Pride covers for JUST the queer characters in Star Wars comics. This is notable for two reasons. First, Lando Calrissian is on a cover which is rumored to be Marvel/Lucasfilm “confirming” Lando’s speculated pansexuality. Second, POE DAMERON IS MISSING.
DC and Marvel are also upping their Pride money grab game by each putting out an anthology issue with stories by queer creators. And with some more gorgeous covers and variants. I’ve pored over Samantha King’s previews for DC Pride and Marvel Pride over at Screenrant and honestly, I can’t wait for both of these to drop.
DC is trotting out some awesome names for the stories AND giving us more Apollo and Midnighter content, and you had me at “Be Gay, Do Crimes,” Sina Grace. But–and I cannot stress this enough–what is blowing my mind is that they are also including PINUPS!!! And one of them is John Constantine drawn by Kevin Wada!!!! There are not enough rainbows and eggplants for me to express how excited I am to finally see this.
Last day to preorder DC Pride #1 is this Sunday, 5/9!
— Kevin Wada (@kevinwada) May 7, 2021
Marvel’s Pride anthology has two things I can’t wait to read: A story about Daken written by Steve Orlando, and a story with David (Prodigy) and Tommy (Speed) as a couple on a date, written by Kirien Gillen. My joy at this is only slightly overshadowed by me learning that David and Tommy became a couple awhile ago because Chip Zdarsky snuck it into Empyre, I guess? Who knew?? And Allan Heinberg is coming back to write about Billy and Teddy after their wedding!! Which also happened! And I didn’t really know about it! But I get a little teary eyed thinking about how I’ve been shipping them for the past 15 years and now they’re MARRIED. And it has only been like, three years in comic book time but what is time, really.
You’ll see actual reviews for DC Pride #1 and Marvel Voices: Pride #1 from some of our contributors later this month, so I’m just giving you a heads up.
If you’re not here for the Big Two, there’s other cool stuff happening, too.
Image did not release as many variant covers, but they did get Kris Anka to draw one for Ultramega, and they are offering the Walking Dead variant cover by Tillie Walden, as a print for purchase. Image is also donating 50% of the net proceeds for all the Pride covers and merch to the Transgender Law Center, which is pretty rad.
Iron Circus Comics is putting on a Pride Showcase!
Pride's here again, which means more people looking not just for LGBTQ+ comics, but for so many different combinations of narratives and genres.
Well we at ICC are going to help folks pick/recommend books by highlighting one of our titles each day this June, starting with… pic.twitter.com/kRMHbnDhxP
— Iron Circus Comics (@ironcircuscomix) June 3, 2021
Happy Pride, y’all.