The importance of increasing LGBTQ+ representation in media

Comic book films pave the way with the addition of some gay characters


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Jon Kent and his partner in the new Superman comics

Emily Haber, Arts & Culture Writer

In the last few years, movies and TV shows have implemented characters who are a part of the LGBTQ+ community, many of which have become praised and enjoyed by fans.

“Eternals,” a new Marvel movie that is now in theaters, features Phastos, the first openly-gay character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). In the new issue of the DC Comics it features Jonathan Kent (the new Superman), the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane, who will be in a same-sex relationship with a male.

Sophomore Allison Bonaventura is a major MCU fan and is excited about “Eternals.”

“I haven’t looked too much into the new marvel movie, but I have seen that there is going to be a first LGBTQ+ character,” said Bonaventura. “I think that this is very important that it is going to be in a movie instead of a show because more people are going to see it, as it’s one of the more marketed movies. I think it is good that there is finally going to be a character that people can feel represented by even if they don’t relate to the character’s personality or development.”

The importance of this character matters to Bonaventura as well as many other MCU fans. She is looking forward to seeing this film, as she is very excited to see Brian Tyree Henry play Phastos. The movie came out last month is rated PG-13 and has a runtime of two hours and 37 minutes. 

Junior Glynnis Bastas is equally thrilled to see the MCU expand its characters to include marginalized groups. “I feel like the new character is showing more inclusion into the LGBTQ+ community. I think it is a step into the right direction. I think it is going to be interesting of what MCU does with this character” said Bastas.

This character is so far receiving a lot of support and positive feedback from fans as the movie was just recently  released.

This inclusion hasn’t just recently happened in the media, however it is becoming more popular. “Stranger Things,” a TV show on Netflix, introduced Robin Buckley in season three. Buckley revealed to Steve Harrington in one of the episodes that she had feelings for a female classmate, although she has not come out yet, and this moment was cherished by fans. The future of Buckley is unknown, however season four is supposedly going to be released in 2022.

Bastas, also a fan of “Stranger Things” stated, “Robin was one of my favorite characters in season three, she was the one who had a lot of the humor and bought the sarcasm and I think she put that into the show, into the plot. Her character is apart of the the LGBTQ+ community and I think that her coming out story to Steve was very good.” 

“I think there are going to be more characters in the future who are going to be a part of the LGBTQ+ community. I think there will be a lot of people who support them,” said Bastas.

This idea of inclusion is important to both Bastas and Bonaventura.

“The importance of this is the need of representation for LGBTQ+ communities…for so long [movies have featured] heterosexual relationships. It is sometimes too normalized and should be in the media because it is real life,” said Bonaventura.