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  1. #76
    FF purist/snob CaptCleghorn's Avatar
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    Characters, to me, can be divdoied into three groups:

    1) new characters (Rhonda Pineda - Atomica) These recent new characters are expected to be created to fit into a more diverse range of genders, sexualities, and races.

    2) silver age characters (Ray Palmer - Atom) These characters were created in the fifties and sixties and came out of a SWM rubber stamp machine with an occasional woman. The situation with them is the sliding timeline where the JL and its members all started in the 21st century now. We don't believe a SWM and token white female team cast is acceptable anymore. hence, rewriting of history is needed.

    3) golden age characters (Al Pratt - Atom) Same SWM machine as with the silver age, but also with occasional offensive language and caricatures. There are arguments that some diversity should be added, but most realize that a JSA that's as diverse as a 2010s team is too much of a stretch given the time period is fixed. A few other characters are introduced and nuances are added that weren't intended by the original authors.

    There are challenges for every group of characters and the success of historical drama has shown us that we are capable of dealing with a time period where things were different but people were as strong and diverse regardless of their race, gender, or sexuality.

  2. #77
    FF purist/snob CaptCleghorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    I don't think anyone is confused about that. But the trait could easily cross over from the New52 version to the classic one.

    Now, I haven't read a ton of Allan's classic stories. I know he was married (twice) and dated around a bit but have never actually read the pages. All I have is his modern appearances to judge things by. And in those appearances, I could believe he was a closeted gay man. His wife is rarely mentioned, seen even less, and doesnt appear to be any kind of motivator for Allan. Whether he had a "grand true love" in the Golden Age ala Lois Lane or not, for the past twenty-some years his love life has barely been a factor.

    I put more stock on modern interpretations than ones from seventy-plus years ago, though I still value the older material of course. But if there's a popular JSA member who's original history would "fit" the idea of a closeted LGBT person better than Allan? Then that's where the change/s should be made. But it should be a Golden Age character who still matters. No one is going to care if the Golden Arrow was gay. But Hourman or Sandman or Jim Corrigan? That'd be a change worth making.
    I don't like the way Earth 2 Alan Scott was handled by Roy Thomas in order to get unknown kids. It was a soap opera mess. I'd go through a closeted Alan, perhaps even being unsure of his sexuality. Now, the Harlequin trying to seduce a hero she knew was gay seems like a twist on an old Golden Age theme which could go over today.

    But I do tend to lean more socially progressive and a straight GA Alan Scott is also OK with me.

  3. #78
    Mighty Member FlashFreak's Avatar
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    I don’t really have an opinion on Alan Scott. I mean I like the character but if they made him gay again, I don’t really care. If someone is upset I’m sure it could probably be easily ignored if one wanted to do so.

    Now if they chose to make a character like Jay Garrick gay, I would absolutely take issue with that. The reason being is Joan Garrick is as much a part of the character of Jay as say his speed or mercury helmet. Their relationship is beautiful, meaningful, and she really is a part of his origin story as he wanted to get faster to impress her in college. Through the years different writers have added different layers to their relationship: the tradegy and heart ache of them not being able to have kids, Johns showing that Jay would absolutely cross the line and take a villain out if you threatened his wife, etc. As someone who is happily married this resonates on many levels with me and I would hate to see anyone tamper with their relationship.

    So really all I would want is for the writers to do their homework and go back to do a lot of research on any character that they want to make changes to and see if it makes sense to do so.
    Last edited by FlashFreak; 05-11-2018 at 10:00 AM.
    Favorite Characters:
    DC The Flash (Jay, Wally, Barry), Hal Jordan,Ray Palmer, Jack Knight, Stargirl, Captain Marvel/Shazam! (Billy Batson), & Carter Hall.
    MARVEL Daredevil, Spider-Man (Peter Parker), Iron Fist, & The Fantastic Four.


    Current Pulls: The Flash, Hawkman, Daredevil, Amazing Spider-Man, Peter Parker The Spectacular Spider-Man, Venom, ASM Renew Your Vows, Marvel 2 in One, Immortal Hulk, and Fantastic Four.

  4. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ascended View Post
    That is a problem. In an ideal world I'd agree with those saying "just make new characters" but that doesn't actually work. And DC has to deal with the realities of their market.
    In case of team books like the JSA, the market is not such a big problem. You can usually add some new characters to the team without much problems, and some of the main characters (like Jesse Quick or Stargirl) in the in the pre flashpoint JSA were also relatively new characters.

  5. #80
    Spectacular Member astro@work's Avatar
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    I'm in favor of lining up any "new" revelations on older characters with what we've seen on the page, but also knowing what we've seen on the page doesn't tell the whole story.

    When Obsidian came out in the 90's, he'd never had any deeply serious relationships with women, even though there were a couple of incidental ones IIRC. That's a very common story for dudes struggling with their sexuality. I lived that story myself.

    Similarly, finding out the comics Iris West is biracial would upset nothing because we've never seen her mother in current continuity...she could be literally anything. Plus it would change nothing while adding new layers to her character.

    DC's golden age heritage is problematic because it was all written with a bland vanilla-white hetero sensibility. A bisexual character coming out later in life wouldn't be unheard of, but some of the characters who never had a strong love interest back then might be more obvious candidates for a story like that (Mr. Terrific for example).
    I did like how diversity was introduced into the JSA....not with the GA characters during the 2000's run, but with legacy characters.

  6. #81
    FF purist/snob CaptCleghorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by astro@work View Post
    DC's golden age heritage is problematic because it was all written with a bland vanilla-white hetero sensibility. A bisexual character coming out later in life wouldn't be unheard of, but some of the characters who never had a strong love interest back then might be more obvious candidates for a story like that (Mr. Terrific for example).
    I did like how diversity was introduced into the JSA....not with the GA characters during the 2000's run, but with legacy characters.
    There has been speculation that Dr Midnite (Charles McNider) was gay. I think he was the previous most likely possibility as far as fan specualtion goes.

  7. #82
    Spectacular Member astro@work's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptCleghorn View Post
    There has been speculation that Dr Midnite (Charles McNider) was gay. I think he was the previous most likely possibility as far as fan specualtion goes.
    100% Agree. I can't say I've read many of Dr Midnite's golden age stories (origin only really). I've read that he did have some sort of love interest back then, but it was more of a non-serious type. He was also never married even during the Infinity Inc. days when the family lives of the Golden Agers got explored. While the backstory on Alan's kids got pretty soapy, I always enjoyed his relationship with Molly and their discovering each other later in life.

  8. #83
    Astonishing Member Lightning Rider's Avatar
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    Refreshing to see most people posting share the desire to see a sensitive balance between respecting history and trying to incorporate neglected communities.

  9. #84
    Extraordinary Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aahz View Post
    In case of team books like the JSA, the market is not such a big problem. You can usually add some new characters to the team without much problems, and some of the main characters (like Jesse Quick or Stargirl) in the in the pre flashpoint JSA were also relatively new characters.
    Team titles do give you more wiggle room, definitely. But the risk is what happens when a creator leaves the book.

    Consider Orlando's JLA. He re-imagined The Ray as a gay man, and last I knew (I fell behind, then dropped the title) he was exploring Ray's life and doing a fair job of building the character up.

    Now, JLA and most other team books are getting canceled and reshuffled as part of No Justice and where's Ray? As far as I know, he's not appearing anywhere.

    And even if No Justice wasnt bringing in major changes and JLA was just going to continue being published with a new writer after Orlando, there's no saying the next writer would keep Ray on the roster.

    I do think team books are a great way to introduce new characters, because the big name staples will bring in readers who would otherwise pass on the new character. But it's by no means a guarantee of keeping those new faces around.

    I actually think there's more potential in switching up established supporting casts. Maybe Lois Lane is half Japanese (as with American Alien); it'd make sense given her father's military background (lots of soldiers come home with wives from afar). Maybe Jimmy Olsen is bisexual (I mean, obviously!). Fans seem more willing to accept adjustments to supporting characters than main ones, and the established supporting characters aren't in any danger of disappearing. The only downside is that you end up with a hero who's probably a straight white guy surrounded by a diverse group of non-heroic friends and family, and people will twist the subtext around into something negative.
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  10. #85
    Extraordinary Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptCleghorn View Post
    I don't like the way Earth 2 Alan Scott was handled by Roy Thomas in order to get unknown kids. It was a soap opera mess. I'd go through a closeted Alan, perhaps even being unsure of his sexuality. Now, the Harlequin trying to seduce a hero she knew was gay seems like a twist on an old Golden Age theme which could go over today.

    But I do tend to lean more socially progressive and a straight GA Alan Scott is also OK with me.
    As I've said, I haven't read many Golden Age stories with Allan, nor have I read a ton of what Thomas did with him in later years. But from what I've seen since Zero Hour? Allan could totally be a closeted gay man. And if DC were going to switch the orientation of a JSA member I'd rather it be one of the bigger names.

    But not Jay; as FlashFreak said Jay's relationship with Joan has been too big a part of the character, even into the modern era.
    Higher, Faster, Further....More.

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  11. #86
    Ultimate Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Assam View Post
    Here's a question for you, and anyone else whose against Alan being gay: Why is being a heterosexual important to Alan Scott's character?
    Why is it okay to SUDDENLY, after 70-some-odd years, decide that a character who never appeared to be homosexual should now be homosexual?

    If he was never written that way before, does that mean it's suddenly okay for a writer to impose his will on the character's history?

    Would it then be okay if the next writer of Alan Scott decided to erase all continuity that involved his being gay as if that never happened in the first place?
    Or would it be that once any writer decided to make a pre-existing character gay, that character would be stuck with that identity no matter what any future writers wanted to do?

  12. #87
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    I think it would be great if DC did a month or two where every character is LGBT. Think of the publicity and sales. Media would be all over this. Win-Win for DC.

  13. #88
    Extraordinary Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Colossus1980 View Post
    I think it would be great if DC did a month or two where every character is LGBT. Think of the publicity and sales. Media would be all over this. Win-Win for DC.
    .....I dunno. That just screams "cheap gimmick" to me. I mean, an entirely gay lineup for a couple months....what's the gain there?

    I suspect it would backfire and DC would get a lot of flack for shamelessly trying to swindle the LGBT community and its supporters with a event that wouldn't matter 60 days later. It'd be a matter of DC going for an empty calories Event instead of investing in real, lasting representation.

    I'm all for proper representation, and I'm okay with adjusting some characters where the history allows for that kind of shift, but I don't see this ending well for anyone. DC would likely see a short spike in sales of course, but possibly at the cost of long-term respect. I think it'd hurt them more than help them at the end of the day.
    Higher, Faster, Further....More.

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  14. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    Why is it okay to SUDDENLY, after 70-some-odd years, decide that a character who never appeared to be homosexual should now be homosexual?

    If he was never written that way before, does that mean it's suddenly okay for a writer to impose his will on the character's history?

    Would it then be okay if the next writer of Alan Scott decided to erase all continuity that involved his being gay as if that never happened in the first place?
    Or would it be that once any writer decided to make a pre-existing character gay, that character would be stuck with that identity no matter what any future writers wanted to do?
    Oh, please. Characters are constantly being adjusted in their 70-whatever years of portrayal. All the time, new writers add new elements or change the personalities of old characters. These changes are often extremely popular. Green Arrow suddenly becomes liberal, Wonder Woman is the Goddess of War instead of an ambassador of peace, Bruce and Kate are suddenly cousins. Writers twist characters to suit their interpretations. People realize they are gay and bi late in their lives. It is ridiculous to think that writers can have the leeway to change characters in one way and sexuality is somehow a step too far.

  15. #90
    Astonishing Member j9ac9k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MajorHoy View Post
    Why is it okay to SUDDENLY, after 70-some-odd years, decide that a character who never appeared to be homosexual should now be homosexual?
    Men with bulging muscles who run around in capes and tights "never appeared to be homosexual?" Which comics have you been reading?

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