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Comics News: Gay Heroes Swoop Into Teen Titans And Captain America Spin-Off Series

We’re still reeling from New York Comic Con, but we had some quick nuggets we wanted to share:

Bleeding Cool has posted that DC’s new version of Teen Titans includes Bunker, a new gay character. Teen Titans writer Scott Lobdell—who’s previous penned stories for Fantastic Four, Iron Man, Buffy and Iron Man— explains:

[Bunker’s] real name is Miguel Jose Barragan. He was raised in a very small Mexican village called El Chilar. He was very loved by his family and the village as well—and they were as accepting of his homosexuality as they were to his super powers when they first manifested.

To that end he grew up in an angst-free environment. He was born out of the closet and so he has a very refreshing outlook on life.

Titans illustrator Brett Booth explains that Bunker, though raised Catholic, is an unapologetic flamer:

We wanted to show an interesting character who’s homosexuality is part of him, not something that’s hidden. Sure they are gay people who you wouldn’t know are gay right off the bat, but there are others who are a more flamboyant, and we thought it would be nice to actually see them portrayed in comics.

Did we go over the top, I don’t think so. I wanted you to know he might be gay as soon as you see him. Our [Teen Titans] is partly about diversity of ANY kind, its about all kinds of teens getting together to help each other. It is a very difficult line to walk, will he be as I’ve read in some of the comments ‘fruity’? Not that I’m aware of. Will he be more effeminate than what we’ve seen before, the ‘typical’ gay male comic character, yes. Does it scare the shit out of me that I might inadvertently piss off the group I want to reflect in a positive way, you’re damn straight (pun intended!)

In other hands we might be nervous about such a broad depiction, but Lobdell previously outed the Marvel mutant Northstar in Alpha Flight #106, so we think he can handle the material well.

Speaking of Marvel Comics, the company is revisiting the issue of gays in the military in a really old-school way: One of the many Captain America miniseries tying into this summer’s blockbuster movie is All Winners Squad: Band of Heroes, a story set in WWII that sees Cap teaming up with young heroes in a secret super-powered platoon. And as readers recently learned, two of those heroes—Captain Flame and American Ace—appear to be gay and share a clandestine kiss.

It’s not the focus of the series, but it brings added depth to Marvel’s rich history of caped crusaders.