Tuesday, April 21, 2015

All-New X-men #40 Reveals Iceman as Gay...So WTF?

It used to be that somebody famous coming out as gay was a big fucking deal. There are still some people out there who refuse to believe that Rock Hudson, Elton John, and Ricky Martin are gay. These are probably the same people that believe Elvis is still alive. That's not to say it's an irrelevant issue. There are entire organizations, many of them following the proud tradition began by Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell, who make it their mission to treat gays the same way Michael Meyers treats babysitters. These people are a growing minority and will one day go the way of the Zune, but that doesn't mean gay issues aren't relevant.

Marvel is no stranger to exploring that rainbow-colored side of the garden. Just a few years ago, Marvel celebrated its first gay wedding between Northstar and his boyfriend in Astonishing X-men #50. That didn't piss off anyone who doesn't donate money to Rick Santorum. And Marvel already has a pretty impressive cast of gay or bisexual characters such as Mystique, Northstar, and Loki. Then there's Daken, but I'm convinced that guy will fuck anything with a pulse so maybe that's not a good example. Then earlier today Marvel attempted to make Jerry Falwell turn over in his grave again. They revealed that Iceman, one of the original X-men, is gay.


This is not a joke. This is not something that a bunch of stoners came up with while stoned out of their minds on 4/20. This is a real news story, complete with scans from All-New X-men #40. There's nothing subtle about it. There's nothing built up. O5 Jean just pulls O5 Iceman aside and basically tells him she knows he's gay. That's it. This massive WTF retcon is about as contrived as the original ending to Mass Effect 3.


Now I have no problems with Iceman being gay. He's had no real female love interests that have stuck over the years. He's dated Kitty Pryde. He's dated Mystique. He's dated Opal. Unless someone went out of their way to follow Iceman's love life, they would never know these relationships existed. And it happens in the real world. Gay people do try to date straight people. They do it for the same I go to male strip club. Sometimes you just like to wander onto the other side of the fence. It's not right or wrong. However, it does present a big fucking problem.

First and foremost, there was absolutely no build-up to this. Iceman never dropped any hints. He never flirted with any men. He never showed even a shred of interest. There's being closeted and then there's just being fucking stupid. And for it to be revealed like this...it feels like a little girl telling her parents she killed a hobo while talking about her day at school. It just comes out of fucking nowhere. It has no depth behind it. It doesn't have any significant meaning other than changing something randomly.

It also really fucks with his history in ways that are nearly as bad as the Maximoff twins retcon from AXIS. O5 Jean Grey is not the only telepath in the X-men. She's not even the most powerful. O5 Iceman has lived around the likes of Emma Frost, Professor Xavier, Kid Omega, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, and an adult Jean Grey. These are not novice telepaths. Hell, Iceman was actually involved with Emma Frost at one point. And if Emma Frost can't pick up that he's gay, then how the fuck can a teenage Jean Grey pick up on it? Then again, it's Emma Frost. I don't care how gay any man is. If they have a chance to hook up with Emma Frost, they're going to fucking do it.

Then there are the other relationships he's had. He dated Kitty Pryde very recently and he wasn't the one that broke up with her. She did that to him. Moreover, there was even a glimpse into the future as recently as Wolverine and the X-men #29 where it was shown that Kitty and Iceman had a kid named Carmen Drake. Now I get that gay men can sometimes father children, but this just shows that the idea of making Iceman gay feels like one of those knee-jerk instincts that leads to half the marriages in Las Vegas.

Overall, this feels way too forced. O5 Iceman is the only character in All-New X-men who hasn't had anything meaningful happen to him. He hasn't experienced any fucked up revelations or had any stories that really center around him. This just feels like a cheap way to make him relevant in a series where he's done jack shit. If that's the only reason Marvel is doing it, then it's a shitty reason. It would make perfect sense if Iceman was bisexual. At least that would explain his past relationships and behavior. But this just feels way too fucking forced. There are other ways to make Iceman relevant in the comics, but those ways might require additional effort and I guess that was something that Marvel wasn't willing to do. Nuff said!

30 comments:

  1. Yeah and the way Jeen just goes no you are gay made no effing sense

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  2. Basically just said how I feel. Why she picked that moment to out him, I have no idea. This was disgusting.

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  3. I also hated how she's like, "I'm a telepath, I can read your mind, You're thinking about it right now" Like yeah ok but bitch have you heard of a thing called boundaries? Get the fuck outta my head Jean you pretentious bitch YOU WERE NOT INVITED.

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  4. I.... am so freakin' angry at this, I don't care if expressing this sentiment pisses off the LGB demographic. I have nothing against them, but I'm so freaking sick and tired of this bullshit out of nowhere retconning, whether its to pander to a minority group or because the film branch thinks people are too stupid to understand that characters may have on origin in one medium and different one in others. STOP THIS SHIT.

    You want characters to appeal to different demographics THEN MAKE NEW CHARACTERS! Or at LEAST have a transformation in a way that makes SENSE!!!

    GRAH!!!!!! The ONLY way I can see justifying this, is this is another one of Marvel Editorial's MORONIC Mandates, and Bendis SPECIFICALLY held off on this till JUST now, because he knows Secret Wars is going to wipe all this shit away, so he can do as ordered, without doing any lasting harm.

    Otherwise, WHY NOT JUST WAIT?! Once the Reset Button is hit, you can have a gay ANYBODY, and it wouldn't be such a blatant slap across the freakin' FACE!

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  5. Years ago if i remember correctly there was a story line where that Northstar had a crush on him and he reacted stating that he was in fact not gay...

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  6. This is completely ridiculous!! Let's not forget that as an adult Iceman was banging his hot Asian gf Opal so having young Iceman as gay says that as an adult he was experimenting. BMB could have expanded his powers as they did young Jean Grey, but no BMB & Marvel turns him killing the X-Men faster by turning off their fanbase. Screw Marvel & DC.

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  7. "... without doing any lasting harm."

    David's comment right here pretty much encapsulates the real problem all of you have with this. You guys need to do some soul searching and ask yourselves why you feel threatened by this.

    It really shouldn't matter to you what a character's sexuality is. It shouldn't be seen as something that can harm a character, and it shouldn't be something to he picked apart and analyzed under a goddamn microscope.

    Do you do this when someone you know in real life comes out?: "This doesn't make sense! You've dated people of the opposite sex! *Hot* people! I watched you bang [blank] and you were having a hella good time! THINK OF THE CONTINUITY, DAMN YOU!"


    Listen, guys, you need to understand two things:

    -In life, things don't always "make sense"; especially what people do; they don't always make sense to themselves, to the people around them, or to the rest of the world if they're watching

    -Minorities don't require a "build up" to be anything. No one has to provide a dissertation to validate who they are. They don't owe you anything when it comes to race, sex, gender or sexual orientation. To put it in the words of a gay friend of mine: "I don't need a fucking justification for my existence"

    Basically, this sort of thing happens in real life All. The. Time. The only difference about it here is that time travel is involved.

    If you can acknowledge that this sort of thing happens in real life, then you really need to dig deep and ask yourself why you're angry. Identify whatever prejudice you have living inside you that would make you use describe this as "lasting harm" or complain that only new characters should be identified as gay -- the implication being that coming out as gay is damaging to an established character.

    Also, ask yourself you would use a word like "pandering" to describe this, but wouldn't with the great host of straight characters. Why was Iceman being straight two days ago not pandering in your mind?

    Seriously, guys, you have some questions to ask yourselves. I'm sure I do too, though, so don't think I'm trying to say I'm better than you. We all need to identify that prejudice within and exorcise that motherfucker.

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    1. To clarify: I'm not saying this was good writing, by the way. As always, I maintain that Bendis is an idea man but a shit writer.

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    2. I guess I should address the telepaths thing too: Some telepaths make a point of suppressing their ability as much as possible. Adult Jean even told Bobby in "X-Men" #47 that she doesn't let herself freely read his thoughts, so she didn't know what he wanted to talk to her about.

      As for others, simply because they might have the ability to know doesn't mean they lack the ability to keep their mouths shut about it. =P

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    3. Actually no I don't.

      This is hack writing of the lowest caliber.

      I had no problem when Ultimate Colossus came out of the closet and was man-crushing on Wolverine. One of my favorite characters on "The Originals" is Josh, the freshly turned gay club kid, who's been a kind of supporting PoV character for all the crazy shit that's going on.

      If they'd waited for the reboot, and just made the new Iceman gay, I would have blinked, gone "huh... okay," and then moved on.

      I am so sick and freaking tired of everytime anyone objects to to something involving a minority demographic, that objection can only be because they're prejudiced.

      I'm in a seething rage because I'm a freakin' writer, and this is the kind of twist I'd expect from a 13yo's slashfic.

      As for the telepath thing, Adult Bobby had a thing with EMMA FROST back before here Fully Reformed period. She's NEVER been a big believer in personal privacy and back then, she'd have used that to torment him ENDLESSLY. So yeah, I call bullshit on the "oh he was just supressing it" justificaton.

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    4. Didn't Emma have a gay brother she loved very much, and their father stuck him in a mental institution? I don't think she would have done that to Bobby.

      Also, be careful calling Bendis a hack. I agreed with someone at CBR about that yesterday, even though I was defending this development, and they banned me for a month for "rude and insulting behavior."

      Fuck them.

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    5. I don't have a problem with any LGBT person and I'm not threatened since my brother is gay what I have and what the readers of this blog have is that Marvel is driving the X-Men into the ground with horrible storytelling and retconning characters instead of developing them with excellent storytelling. You don't see any gay characters on the Avengers do you?

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    6. I'm not necessarily blaming Bendis.

      This smacks of the same Executive Meddling that created One More Day, Planet X, M-Day, and the Maximoff Retcon.

      It's my theory that Marvel told Bendis to do this, he said, "Sure just give me time to finishe the curent story up" which bought him to JUST before Secret Wars, when hopefully the worst of the drek will get wiped away

      If they want to turn major characters gay/straight/or polka-dots when the continuity reboot hits, more power to 'em. New timeline, new characters. Go for it. BUT STOP WITH THE FREAKING RETCONS!!!!!!!

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    7. Retcons aren't inherently terrible. Granted, most turn out to be, but this is the same kind of "retcon" that happens in real life.

      I mean, really, David -- we're talking about a retcon that literally happens to the continuity of the real world. That kind of puts it on another level from Bendis getting everything about "The Thanos Imperative" wrong in that shit "Guardians of the Galaxy" story he wrote that failed to even answer the question it was ostensibly all about ("What happened to Richard Rider?").

      Again, not saying Bendis wrote this well. The idea is without problems, though.

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    8. No, they're not.

      I find the "Author Saving Throw" variety to be quite useful.

      But this is either an "Executive Meddling" or "Writer on Board" retcon, which tend to be pretty bloody godawful unless handled properly, and so far, no one has offered a convincing argument that explains this as anything other than a complete AssPull.

      Can you tell I spend too much time on TVtropes?

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    10. Well, yes. That and you've never had a conversation with a gay person about their sexuality. =P

      If you're not willing to address the "retconning the real world" analogy, then you didn't come into this willing to change your mind.

      And, no, the telepaths thing ain't gonna cut it. Not when we're talking about adult friends of his with more tact than Teen Jean, as well as Emma Frost, a woman who -- even before they were close -- wouldn't have used that against him since she saw her beloved brother tortured over it.

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    11. And this is why i hate SJWs. They make sweeping assumptions about the people who disagree with them. Your assumption is that I haven't, and that I don't have a gay friend who thinks this is just as stupid as I do, but I was trying not to pull the "gay friend" card, because my argument should stand on its own merit, but I've had enough aspersions made about my character.

      And if he were JUST a teen character, I would accept your argument.

      I reject that you can make the TEENAGE version gay, while there's an ADULT version who's not, AND ADMIT THAT IN DIALOGUE.

      So far, the aesop for this scene is "Time Travel Makes You Gay."

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    12. Dude, I only said that about you because you're acting like it's some space-time breaking inconsistency that a guy can date women and then come out as gay. =P Sorry if I'm being an ass, but you're being obstinate.

      Honestly, I didn't give your personal history that much thought, but you are clearly acting like it's a foreign -- perhaps even incomprehensible -- notion to you. Was it silly and unfair to draw a conclusion that you lack such experience? Perhaps. No, it probably was. I'm sorry. Do your words reflect that familiarity, though? Not even a little.

      In any case, I apologize for crapping on you and will try to avoid that now.

      Your argument taken on its own merits -- which I have addressed -- doesn't stand. The telepaths thing doesn't preclude this, nor does older Bobby being ostensibly straight. Besides, Bendis has already said that will be addressed in "Uncanny X-Men" #600, so it's not going to be ignored.

      Heck, for all we know, Bobby was sexually fluid for a while and just hadn't "settled" until he was a little older.

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    13. Also, I want to emphasize that Bendis wrote this scene badly regardless of the idea's overall applicability. I want to clarify that I'm not defending his writing. He sucks at it. He has good ideas, and that's about it. I think he'd make a good editor, but he's a sub-par writer.

      Anyway, this scene in particular is kind of sucky because, in addition to the grating dialogue, you've got Jean controlling the conversation rather than gently guiding it. Maybe the "tough love" approach is what some people need, but we hadn't seen enough to warrant that.

      Bendis would have served Teen Jean's character and LGBTQ folks in the real world better by having her offer Bobny reassurance that emboldened him to confide in her. Props for writing it such that Bobby was the one to speculate on what the story with his older self is rather than Jean continuing as ye mighty sage, but it should have also been him to decide on the firm position that he's "full gay." When he suggested that maybe he's bi, she should have asked him "What do you think?" and it then be Bobby himself to dismiss that.

      Anyway, I hope that clarifies where I'm coming from a bit more. I do appreciate what Bendis is trying to do here, though. Could have been done better, but that's true of everything he writes. We'll see how well he fields it in UXM #600.

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  8. Remember when Matt Faction was writing uncanny, and he wrote that Cyclops had that "little black box" in his mind, that not even a skilled telepath like Emma Frost could get into? He could use that for adult Iceman. That sort of gets around the whole "Iceman's gay, and no telepaths ever pointed it out" situation. My biggest issue is going to be if Bendis makes young Iceman gay, but he won't make old Iceman gay. That's like saying young Iceman is choosing to be gay or something.

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    1. The box was a creation of Scott and Jean together, Iceman couldn't do it by himself.

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    2. Yeah, great theory. One BIG problem.

      Cyclops is the most tightly wound, self-disciplined person in the entire X-men (at that point).

      Iceman is the EXACT OPPOSITE of that.

      The idea that he could fashion a mental construct like that is so absolutely laughable, I can't believe someone acutally tried using.

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  9. If it was Dan vs, there would be now scream: BENDISSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Dan vs Bendis

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  10. how many more gay superheros do we need rictor and shatterstar do i need to say more damn

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    Replies
    1. Well I do think we need gay superheroes with a higher profile. Seriously, when was the last time Rictor and Shatterstar ever made the news? And it's not like women were lining up to bang Iceman anyways. Just saying.

      Jack

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