With a 10 years and nearly twice as many blockbuster films under its belt, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has taken fans to the different planets and dimensions, shown us magnificent superhuman powers, and introduced us to countless heroes and villains, ranging from mammoth gods to plucky raccoons. But it seems like the one thing that these movies cannot do is feature any LGBTQ characters at all. Marvel has been dinged in the past for its lack of queer representation, and now the studio is finally going to do something about it. Two LGBT Marvel superheroes are joining the universe very soon, according to a new interview with Marvel Studio's boss Kevin Feige.
In an interview with The Playlist, Kevin Feige confirmed that Marvel Studios is working on including more LGBT representation in its upcoming movies. When asked whether the LGBT characters fans would be seeing in future Marvel movies would be heroes we have already seen on the big screen or completely new characters, Feige responded... both!
Both... Both ones you’ve seen and ones you haven’t seen.
Hmm, interesting — so that means that at least one of the Marvel characters we have already seen in the movies will come out as LGBT in a future film. The most likely candidate would be Valkyrie, the Asgardian warrior who appeared in last year's Thor: Ragnarok. Tessa Thompson shared that her portrayal of Valkyrie was bisexual, but that was not made evident in the film. In fact, Thompson even filmed a scene that would have confirmed Valkyrie's bisexuality, but it wound up getting cut.
Another option is also from Thor: Ragnarok. Taika Waititi's character Korg is shown to be gay in the Marvel comics, but his sexuality was not explored in Ragnarok. Waititi said he did not think about Korg's sexuality when portraying him, but admitted "he could be" gay.
And then, there is also the more wishful-thinking route, that Marvel could make its most popular fan-shipped couple into a reality. Many of the film franchise's fans have picked up on a spark between Captain American and Bucky Barnes over their numerous movies together, so could this new direction of LGBT inclusion possibly affect that relationship? That one seems less likely than the others, but hey, who knows?
The other exciting element to Kevin Feige's response is that the Marvel Cinematic Universe will be introducing new characters that identify within the LGBT community in future movies. The only major new character that we know for sure is coming soon is Brie Larson's Captain Marvel. Although Captain Marvel is shown to be heterosexual in the comics, that could possibly be changed in the films.
But what seems more likely is that Kevin Feige is referring to other new Marvel heroes who have not yet been added to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. If Marvel Studios decides to stay true to the source comics, then it has its pick of LGBT heroes to put on the big screen, including Wiccan, Hulkling, or Striker. Unfortunately, some of the better known LGBT Marvel heroes (like Northstar, Karma, and Rictor) fall under the X-Men franchise, which is currently still owned by Fox and thereby cannot be used by Disney's Marvel Cinematic Universe... although that may change if Disney buys Fox next year.
It is important to note that although the Marvel Cinematic Universe has not yet included an explicitly LGBTQ character, other recent Marvel Studios releases have featured queer heroes. The Hulu series Runaways features the lesbian hero Karolina Dean entering a relationship with Nico Minoru, and some have argued the recently released Deadpool 2 explores Deadpool's pansexuality and also features a same-sex relationship between Negasonic Teenage Warhead and Yukio.
Hopefully, this kind of representation will be making its way into the Marvel Cinematic Universe very soon.