DC has been blazing trails for the LGBT community lately. First they announced Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy are romantically entwined, and the last issue of Batgirl included the comic world's first marriage featuring a trans character, as Barbara Gordon's best friend and former roommate Alysia Yeoh got hitched to her longtime girlfriend Jo.
This will go a long way towards transgender representation in comic books, as well as reflecting the changing world after the victory of same-sex marriage legalization in the US and many other countries. Oh, and the whole issue is super cute.
Alysia Yeoh actually came out as trans in 2013, and she's always been a strong supporting character in Barbara Gordon's story. The Batgirl comic has received praise for its positive female role models, as well as for introducing a new Oracle to the DC Comics canon, who is a disabled queer woman of color — nice one, DC.
Committed To Alysia's Story
But as co-writer Brenden Fletcher revealed to MTV, they weren't trying to break ground in issue 45, they just wanted to do right by the characters.
"We’re just looking at what the best story is for the characters and just trying to push forward with that. We just have to try to do what it is we want to do and in our case, Editorial has been so, so, so supportive. It’s a fantastic experience."
After DC sparked controversy by canceling what was going to be the first lesbian wedding in mainstream comics back in 2013, it's good to know that the comics giant is committed to giving their characters the happy endings they deserve, regardless of gender or sexuality.
Alysia and Jo were absent in the latest issue, to take some time to enjoy their honeymoon, but when Alysia returns there might be big things in her future — big, superhero things.
"Things will have changed in Barbara Gordon’s life and of course she’ll want to turn to one of her best friends, and that may usher in a new role for Alysia in the book. It’s all a grand plan. Everything we’ve been doing so far leads up to this big secret thing we’re doing in issue #50 and I hope everybody’s going to like it."
The action heats up in the latest Batgirl issue, as Barbara combats police corruption in Burnside. The comic series is definitely building up to a major climax, and if Fletcher's words are anything to go by, Alysia will have a bigger role to play in the comic's future. Could Alysia be DC Comics' first trans superhero (whose trans-ness was not shoehorned in via magic, shapeshifting, or general scifi mythos)? Here's hoping!
Other Strides DC Has Made
DC has not always had a fantastic history with LGBTQ characters, and the New 52 erased many of them from the narrative. Thankfully, as the comics continue, characters like Renee Montoya are being re-introduced to the stories, and DC is progressing in leaps and bounds. Let's count down our faves!
Batwoman & Maggie
Although their wedding in the main canon was cancelled, Maggie and Kate are back together and kicking butt in the 1940s in DC's new alternate universe Bombshells comic.
Catwoman & Catwoman
Earlier this year, Selina Kyle connected with the new Catwoman, Eiko. Their romance was woven into the narrative of the comic, confirming Selina to be bisexual.
Harley Quinn & Poison Ivy
After flirting with canon for years, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy's close friendship was confirmed to have blossomed (pun intended) into a full-blown romance. Oh, and they're polyamorous too. Nice.
Of course, there's always more to be done, but for now DC is proving how important diversity in comics is, and how cute it can be too!