Marvel Comics Just Confirmed That One of the Original X-Men Is Gay

Source: Comics Alliance

Spoiler: Iceman is gay.

The Advocate reports that pages from Wednesday's All-New X-Men No. 40, which finds young versions of the five founding members of the X-Men "displaced in time and fighting the never-ending battle in present day," reveal that ice-wielding mutant Iceman/Bobby Drake is gay. 

Leaked pages available online show the pivotal scene when telepath and telekinetic Jean Grey confronts Iceman about his macho overcompensation.

Not everyone's coming-out experience is that easy.

Coming out in comics: Fans have speculated that Iceman is gay for some time, although as Bleeding Cool's Rich Johnston reports, it's not entirely clear how this version of Iceman correlates to the standard one. The story of All-New X-Men centers around resident genius Beast traveling back in time to bring the original five X-Men to the present day to prevent a major calamity. Since the contemporary Iceman is generally written as attracted to women, having dated fellow superhero Kitty Pryde, among others, Johnson speculates this Drake is either from an alternate reality or a later-in-life evolution. 

The whole thematic overtone of the X-Men comics has always been about being different. The stories are about being a mutant in a hostile world populated by regular humans resentful and fearful of the change the X-Men and their brethren represent. As such, the series is often viewed as an allegory for LGBT exclusion and togetherness.

"Most of these characters were orphans, exiles and outcasts," writes Comics Alliance's Andrew Wheeler. "The X-Men became their surrogate tribe. That they did not look like a natural family served to underline the idea that these people chose each other. All of this is a gay fairy tale — and a perfected version of what is, for many, a gay reality."

Iceman is far from the first X-Man depicted as a member of the LGBT community, but as one of the five founding members of the team (alongside Cyclops, Jean Grey, Angel and Beast), he carries special significance. 

Anole, a reptilian-like human, was one of the youngest X-Men to come out.
Source: 
Advocate

The news also comes at a time when LGBT characters are getting increasingly open representation in mainstream comics; DC Comics, for instance, is set to launch a new series about gay vigilante Midnighter in June. The X-Men may have fantastical superpowers, but as people with diverse sexualities, they're really just like us.

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Tom McKay

Tom is a staff writer at Mic, covering national politics, media, policing and the war on drugs. He is based in New York and can be reached at tmckay@mic.com.

MORE FROM

The 'Pretty Little Liars' series finale reveals the identity of A.D. and answers 7 other questions

You won't believe who the father of Alison and Emily's baby is.

7 times women in Hollywood pushed back against the pressure to lose weight

They're not here to fit any sort of body standard.

Kendrick Lamar's "Element." video shows a violent portrait of black life in America

"I done cried for this shit, might take a life for this shit/ Put the Bible down and go eye for an eye for this shit."

Nicki Minaj was given the key to Queens. These 9 verses prove she deserves it.

"A star will arise/ And she'll originate from the streets of Southside"

Here's everything you need to know for the 'Pretty Little Liars' finale tonight

Secrets abound in the 'Pretty Little Liars' season finale.

Algiers' 'The Underside of Power' is a soundtrack for every revolution — past, present and future

'Mic' talks with the experimental, Atlanta-bred group about their latest improbable fusion of industrial, punk, gospel and soul.

The 'Pretty Little Liars' series finale reveals the identity of A.D. and answers 7 other questions

You won't believe who the father of Alison and Emily's baby is.

7 times women in Hollywood pushed back against the pressure to lose weight

They're not here to fit any sort of body standard.

Kendrick Lamar's "Element." video shows a violent portrait of black life in America

"I done cried for this shit, might take a life for this shit/ Put the Bible down and go eye for an eye for this shit."

Nicki Minaj was given the key to Queens. These 9 verses prove she deserves it.

"A star will arise/ And she'll originate from the streets of Southside"

Here's everything you need to know for the 'Pretty Little Liars' finale tonight

Secrets abound in the 'Pretty Little Liars' season finale.

Algiers' 'The Underside of Power' is a soundtrack for every revolution — past, present and future

'Mic' talks with the experimental, Atlanta-bred group about their latest improbable fusion of industrial, punk, gospel and soul.