So, you have found yourself in possession of an extraordinary set of abilities. You want to use your newfound "gifts" to help people, but you also want to be a positive representative for your extraordinary sexuality and gender identity. However, you don't really know what to do to ensure you are remembered as positive role model and not a negative one. Luckily, you come upon a list of dos and don'ts to follow as a brand new queer superhero!
1. Be Compassionate
The first rule to take to heart is the lesson of compassion. If you are not a compassionate hero, you're not a good one. Unlike other superheroes, you must stand up against prejudice views by being kinder, more caring, complimenting and, most especially, compassionate, if you plan on rising above them. You can save the day by being a better person.
For instance, in this particular moment (above), famed Marvel superhero Northstar rescues an abandoned baby from an alley. The baby girl was left behind because she was born HIV +. Northstar brought her to a hospital where she received proper care. Unfortunately, I am uninformed as to her fate, but Northstar's selfless act of bravery is a true example of heroism.
2. Be True to Yourself
Another lesson to hold dear, is to be true to yourself. You are a queer person, and a superhero. It is possible for you to be both. That's the whole point of your current quest, so as such, you must be comfortable in your skin.
Here, we have Young Avengers member Hulkling openly kissing a hateful soldier. The soldier (pictured) had told the hero he was going to hell because he was gay. Hulkling responded by kissing the soldier on the cheek, and took a blaster shot for it. Be like Hulkling.
Here is another example of being true to one's self. In the series Future Foundation, there are four 'Moloid' children. All of them are immediately assumed to be male. However, one of them, Tong, refuses to accept this and comes in to the FF wearing a bright pink dress. She expresses her female identity and own gender dysphoria when it comes to being classified as female. Her siblings are unconcerned with such a detail and love her the same as before, irregardless of her gender identity.
3. Overcome Obstacles Head On
You, as a queer superhero, lack the ability to hide [unless you can turn invisible] and this causes you to be more direct in your conflicts. People will scrutinize you more than other superheroes, and you have to deal with it carefully. The goal is to be able to handle conflicts efficiently when given very few other options.
Renee Montoya was outed by DC supervillain, Two-Face. For years, she had been the romantic object of his fantasies, so in some convoluted plot, he decided to out her. Renee is forced to come to terms with her sexuality with her coworkers, friends, and family before she is personally ready. Fortunately, she handles it like a boss, eventually coming into her own and even begins dating Batwoman, another famous, lesbian superheroine.
4. Be Mysterious
You don't have to be like everyone else. You can be mysterious and have secrets. Some of the most prominent LGBT+ characters have secrets. This makes them more interesting and provides more detail about them, which in turn makes them a well-rounded character.
A great example is Mystique, who has been mysterious ever since her first appearance in Marvel comics. Even to this day, there are things we don't know about her - and this makes her a truly interesting character.
Or how about Loki? Everyone always looks at him and expects him to be the 'God of Lies'. When people look at you, they'll assume you'll be the 'Goddet of Gay'. You don't have to be - defy their expectations! Be different than everyone else. Be mysterious.
5. Be a Trendsetter
Now you have the most important rule to follow: break the rules. Be a trend setter. Become your own kind of hero that exemplifies what it means to save the day. Why, stop the bad guy, get the girl, and be awarded the Key to the City when instead, you could save the day by beating the bad guy over the head with the Key to the City, and get the guy?
Why would you settle for normality? Yes, it can be nice, but most of the time it's overrated. Everyone wants to be normal or unique. Why not take the chance to become the new normal or the new unique. Break the rules or make the rules, it's your choice.
1. Don't Let Yourself Be Boxed In
Most heroes and villains will expect you to be a specific way - especially in personality, mannerisms, or attitude. If you also happen to be bisexual, most will consider you straight, especially if you have had more relationships with the opposite gender over same sex relationships.
For instance, take John Constantine. The famed supernatural detective is actually bisexual, despite his many female lovers, past and present. He has, in fact, had relationships with blokes as well. However, in most media productions that feature him, this is skipped over, and he is considered straight.
Another under-appreciated pansexual hero is Deadpool. Most consider this Merc to be a heterosexual, but others, including myself, will tell you otherwise.
2. Don't Become a Stereotype
Yes, you can still wear a rainbow suit. Don't worry, it's not about what you wear. What you wear is an expression of yourself. To censor your own clothes would contradict a previous 'Do'. In this particular case, you don't want to set your whole community back 40 years because you are incapable of being a serious hero. Avoid stereotypes. There is no such thing as a good stereotype. I repeat: there is no such thing as a good stereotype. They are not welcome.
Really, just don't be that one person who says something that everyone else will have a negative reaction to. This is not to say you should censor everything you say. It is just to state that sometimes a campy character can campy for the wrong reasons, and they can be campy for the right reasons. For instance, if you're doing it because that's your personality, that's FABULOUS, be you. Just remember, that, in the past, gay characters have been portrayed solely as campy, so if you were to show your serious nature it would provide a better view into your character. You should also avoid overly flirting with people. We know you're polyamorous, but that doesn't mean invading people's personal space is okay, not saying you will.
3. Don't Be Immature
You are a superhero. You can banter and make jokes, but you have to have a modicum of seriousness in your heroing. In order for you to gain respect and a positive reputation, being serious helps. Without this simple rule, no one would take you seriously.
Now, you may be thinking,"What about Deadpool?" Well, believe it or not he has his serious moments, but just like the Boy Who Cried Wolf, no one believes him. However, this usually comes to bite that person in the butt later on when Deadpool is proven correct.
4. Don't Use Blame
As it was recently said in the Netflix Original series Sense8,
"Blame is people in the present looking into the past when they should be looking into the future."
This philosophy is necessary in your superhero career. Avoid being like everyone else and hear every side of every story. Everyone's point of view matters.
5. Don't Become a Villain
Throughout history, gays and lesbians have been portrayed as predatory antagonists in storylines. Yes, being a villain is fun, but sometimes the reason you're a villain is because of someone else's actions, so you have to stand up for yourself. Don't blame whomever caused your fall from grace, ignore them, and move on. Now, YOU have the chance to be better. Now, YOU have the chance to be greater. Please take that chance and prove your worth.
And that's it - you're now ready for a life of crime fighting as an inspirational superhero! Which leads me to ask...