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!