I'm not gonna hold my breath for Hollywood to debut a serious mainstream film featuring a gay superhero, but it's about time we got one.
Homophobia be damned. Acceptance of the LGBT community is much greater now than it has ever been, in part owing to the prevalence of gay personalities in the media. It logically follows that movies should follow suit with better roles for folks of this persuasion.
And I don't mean more parts along the lines of the savvy gay friend who commiserates with the protagonist about his or her love life while indulging in some lattes. I mean parts that typically would have mandated heterosexual characters.
Including superheroes. Smart, powerful superheroes given textured, complex personalities and origin stories along the lines of the The Amazing Spider-Man or Iron Man flicks.
This ought to be a serious endeavor, not a joke. Like sports stars, superheroes are often role models for children, and there's no reason why we shouldn't have gay role models in this mold, too. In the past, Hollywood all too frequently has featured villains with effeminate or stereotypical characteristics suggesting homosexuality. Even Alfred Hitchcock has done it: Consider Bruno in Strangers on a Train and Leonard in North by Northwest. Sure, those are great, classic movies, but the suggestion in them is that individuals who are gay are out to get you. They're not to be trusted. And that's a big undercurrent of homophobia.
A big-budget action film about a gay superhero can destroy such harmful misconceptions. It can incite positive feelings about homosexuality, and that could go a long way toward righting the wrongs of history. It has commercial potential, too, so it's not just an altruistic initiative. There's a lot of good stuff to mine here.
I would watch such a movie. I suspect many others would, too. I do worry that Hollywood may feel, somehow, that the world isn't ready for a picture of this sort, and again ... I'm not expecting that we'll be greeted with a mainstream film about a gay superhero anytime soon. I believe, however, that one should be made. It would be a seminal achievement for the industry, and it might even spawn a franchise.
I'd like to see that. And I'm willing to wait for it.