In November’s Superman: Son of Kal-El #5, Jonathan Kent will get a boyfriend. It was like this, DC Comics gave us our first bisexual Superman. And of course, clickbait media and people who don’t read comics went into arms—talking about how this is sheer pandering to the LGBTQ community. Some complain that turning a character gay instead of creating new characters to represent the community is lazy. Some don’t even realize that it’s not Clark Kent, and nothing about him changes, except for how he felt about the American Way.
And to a point, I’d agree with Mr. Biggins here. See how this was mishandled with Bobby “Iceman” Drake’s coming out. A young Jean Grey outs him against his consent and forces him to discuss his sexuality. It’s these tasteless moments that show me that we need representation in Comic books.
However, superheroes and comics have always been able to represent the LGBTQ community between the lines. For example, The X-men, a group of outcasts, being discriminated against by the way they were born, taking on alter egos to survive the harsh realities of their world. Yet, in a world that hates their existence, they still seek to not just live but thrive. That’s a story many people in that community can relate to, but they deserve a real hero—a hero for them. I feel as if Jonathan Kent can be that hero.
Jonathan Kent first appeared five years ago in Superman: Convergence #2, and that is relatively new in the world of comics considering his dad has been around for 80 years. And if you think it’s still pandering because his introduction was long ago, and this coming out was never hinted at before, remember that he is a child. He was a child and was only ten years old until March of 2020. Typical Superhero time shenanigans aged him up to 7 years. A ten-year-old’s sexual identity does not need to be defined in any capacity. They are just kids.
After his super-aging, Jonathan becomes the next Superman Of Earth, and he also comes out as bisexual. Now what, doesn’t this change everything? Well, what about Clark? Clark Kent is still there, and your original Superman hasn’t changed. Nothing else changes. Jonathan Kent can have his superheroic adventures, protecting a world once supported by the most incredible shoulders ever, his own father’s. He will still face new challenges and overcome them. Jon Kent will continue to strive to be a hero like his father while coming into his own. Jonathan Kent isn’t your Superman, and he’s a Superman for someone else. Let them have their new adventures. You will never lose your own.
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