Is Wolverine Gay?

wolverine

When I was browsing my newsfeed this morning, I came across an article that I was pretty sure was clickbait: “The Internet’s Freaking Out Over Marvel Making Wolverine Gay.” Another article that came up was from Vice: “Wolverine Might Be a Sexually Fluid Mutant in a Throuple – Deal with It.

I did more research, and yeah, Marvel definitely has made some insinuations that Wolverine is gay or bisexual and is possibly in a relationship with Jean Grey and Scott Summers. Also, apparently in an alternate universe Wolverine and Hercules had a thing? I don’t think I read that one, but that happened.

While some people are welcoming this change, there’s also a large group of people who are very opposed to it. A lot of the articles I’ve found are in favor of making Wolverine gay or are applauding Marvel for being “woke”, and I wanted to share a different opinion to voice some of the problems that die-hard comic book fans experience with Marvel’s changes like this one.

First, and most importantly, it’s incredibly unfair for these news sources (or for anyone, for that matter) to call anyone that is unhappy with this new change “homophobes and bigots” (quoted from the first article I linked to). It’s okay to have discussions about sensitive topics without resorting to calling anyone that disagrees with you a bigot.

A quick note: Both Marvel and DC have focused a lot on diversity over the past several years. This article, however, will focus entirely on Marvel. First, because it was prompted by the Wolverine controversy; and second, because 90% of the comic books I read are published by Marvel.

I love and support diversity. America is full of so many people with different religions, races, and sexuality, and it’s amazing! As a die-hard comic book fan, I want more diversity in comic books. 

Yes, traditionally, a high percentage of comic book characters are white, straight men. However, over time that has changed. In 1966 Marvel created Black Panther; in 1979 Northstar, the first openly gay mutant, made his debut. Marvel is not new to diversity: we have disability rep with Daredevil and Xavier; religious diversity with Kitty Pryde and Magneto; superheroes from all over the world, like Sunfire, Storm (one of my personal favorites), Brother Voodoo, Warpath, Thunderbird, and Nightcrawler. Is there room for more diversity? Absolutely, and I welcome it!

There are a lot of problems that I have with Marvel’s recent decision making, however. I understand that they want to attract more people to their comic books, this just isn’t how to do it. And here are the reasons why not:

It’s lazy.

Instead of retconning existing characters, and making an established heterosexual character (like Wolverine) gay, make awesome new characters! I’ve read Marvel comics that have been published from the 60s to recent times, and 90% of the time, the story is made up of essentially all the same characters. Marvel needs fresh, exciting characters to breathe some new life into their stories, which might help them boost sales.

It alienates existing fans.

As I mentioned in the introduction to this article, I got upset at the articles I was reading that labeled anyone upset at Wolverine’s very sudden change a homophobe or bigot. That’s not what is going on here.

Here’s an example of this kind of controversy that happened a few years ago concerning the MCU. Iron Fist. Iron Fist was created in 1974. His origin story is as follows: Danny Rand, a white, rich kid from NYC, is in a plane crash with his parents over the Himalayas. Both of his parents die, and Danny is raised by a group of monks who rescue him. After becoming the Iron Fist, having completed a series of challenges, he goes back to New York and fights crime and such.

He’s a character completely out of place in the Himalayas, but the monks take him on and train him as one of their own. He’s a great character, with a lot of growth. For people who are life-long Iron Fist fans, it’s difficult when people attack the character for not being Asian and doing martial arts. When the series was released on Netflix, there was a lot of yelling about Danny Rand’s race. Here’s one quote that always sticks out to me, from Keith Chow:

Instead of a white man appropriating the qualities of Asian mysticism, it could have been a story of an Asian-American going back to his parents’ homeland as a way of reconnecting with them — a feeling that many second-generation Asian-Americans can relate to.

It does change the character and the story. I’m not going to broach the topic of cultural appropriation in the article. Comic book fans take canon seriously, just like other fandoms do. These backstories are important to a lot of fans, and they define who the character is and where they come from, why they are the way they are.

One of the reasons that people are upset that Marvel is insinuating that Wolverine is gay or bisexual is that his character, from his first introduction in 1974, has been that he is a heterosexual, cigar-smoking, tough guy with a lot of snark and the hots for Jean Grey. And Mariko Yashida. And Rogue. And Storm. And Domino. And Lady Deathstrike. And Maureen Logan. The list continues on and on.

It’s insulting.

This ties in a bit with my first point that Marvel is just being lazy and not making the effort to create new characters. I can’t speak for everyone, obviously, but do we really want diversity in the form of slapping a new sexuality, religion, or skin color onto an old character? That’s not how diversity works. This is another reason why Marvel and DC should focus on creating new characters instead of just changing existing ones.

The personalities and storylines are taking a back seat to labels.

As I’ve mentioned several times in this article, I love diversity and want more of it in comic books. I’d especially love to see more fat and disabled characters. However, many newer stories and plotlines that Marvel has come out with seem to equate race or sexuality with a personality trait. A personality trait is being short-tempered or giddy. It’s not the same thing, and focusing so much of their storylines on the diversity of their characters makes them feel one dimensional. We are all so much more than a label, and that should apply to well-rounded fictional characters as well.


I’m aware that not everyone is going to agree with me. My goal here is to make people aware that different viewpoints exist, and that jumping to calling people that disagree with you bigots just fuels the anger and divisions that are springing up everywhere. Diversity in literature (including comic books) is important and we need to have these discussions. We just need to look at how we’re getting that diversity and what can be done to best represent the cultures that have been in the background.



What are your opinions on all this? Let me know in the comments.




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Dead Man Logan, Vol. 1: Sins of the Father by Ed Brisson – A Review

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Dead Man Logan, Vol. 1: Sins of the Father
Written by Ed Brisson
Art by Mike Henderson
Comic Book | Superheroes
Published by Marvel Comics
Released June 25th, 2019
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_3_stars

Dead Man Logan is a follow-up series to the much more popular Old Man Logan series. When we encounter Logan (Wolverine) for the first time in this collection, we learn that he’s dying due to the adamantium in his body slowly poisoning him. Before he dies, however, he’s out on a mission to kill the supervillains responsible for taking over the world in his own universe.

Let’s back up a little, in case you haven’t read or aren’t familiar with the Old Man Logan series. In that series, we follow Logan (Wolverine/James Howlett) in one of Marvel’s alternate universes, this one called Earth-807128. (Marvel’s normal timeline is Earth-616.) In all the ways that count, Earth-807128’s Logan is identical to the Wolverine that we’re all familiar with: the adamantium skeleton, the claws (snikt!), and the incredible healing factor.

For a review and more information about Old Man Logan, read my review of the first collection of issues. Essentially, however, Logan lives in a post-apocalyptic wasteland where the supervillains of the world have united and won. The United States has been divided up between the Hulk Clan, Kingpin, Doom, and Red Skull. Logan and his family live on a small farm in Hulkland, where he tries to lead a normal life while blaming himself for the death of the X-Men.

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That’s essentially all you need to know to go into Dead Man Logan. 

One of the biggest things that bugged me about Dead Man Logan is that the art, which is done well by artist Mike Henderson, isn’t dark enough for the story. It’s too colorful and cartoony for a story about Logan’s illness and his mission to prevent a terrible war before it has a chance to occur.

While the plot itself was an interesting concept, the execution of it was a bit lacking of substance. For one thing, it was incredibly predictable. There were only one or two moments in the entire collection that I wasn’t expecting, and that made it rather boring to read. Also, why did writer Ed Brisson turn Hawkeye into a huge douchebag? I hate the direction they’ve taken with Hawkeye’s character over the past few years, and the insults to him in this series is obnoxious. There are a ton of jokes along the lines of no one knowing who Hawkeye is, his not having any superpowers, being useless, etc. However, this isn’t exactly true, as Hawkeye was one of the earliest members of the Avengers and has done a lot of amazing and heroic things throughout Marvel’s history.

(Side note: Hawkeye is one of my boyfriend’s favorite Marvel characters, so I’ve learned a lot about his history and personality over the past two years.) 

As always, I’m not going to give away spoilers, but at the end of the collection, Logan meets someone he’s only heard about, and that was probably my favorite part of the entire story.

In the end, there was too much that I didn’t enjoy in this collection for me to give it more than three stars. As I said before, the plot of the story was interesting but it’s execution was not well-down. Logan’s revenge could have taken a much more interesting track than it did in Dead Man Logan. 


Have you read Dead Man Logan, Vol. 1? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!




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Old Man Logan by Mark Millar – A Review

Old Man Logan Mark Millar.jpg

Wolverine: Old Man Logan by Mark Millar
Art by Steve McNiven
Comic Book | Superheroes
Published by Marvel Comics
Released November 11th, 2009
Goodreads | Amazon
Rating: 5_Star_Rating_System_5_stars

I could easily sum this review up in one sentence: This collection was perfect.

I’ve been hearing about Mark Millar’s Old Man Logan for years, but never actually picked it up. However, I was at the library a couple of weeks ago and while there, decided to take a look at the graphic novels shelves. This collection immediately caught my eye, so I took it home.

And gosh darn, this series is amazing.

Old Man Logan is set in an alternate universe, Earth-807128, rather than Marvel’s normal Earth-616 universe. In this reality, the supervillains have won, and taken over the world. The United States has been split up between the Hulk Gang, Kingpin, Doctor Doom, and Red Skull.

Earth 807128 map

The supervillains were able to win after the “night the heroes fell,” although no one really knows the details of that night. What happened to Wolverine is just as mysterious, as he disappeared and no one has seen or heard from him in fifty years.

When we meet Logan in this series, he’s living on a farm with his wife and two children in Hulkland, just trying to survive. He’s retired as Wolverine and has made a vow to no longer fight.

One day Hawkeye approaches Logan and asks for his help transporting something across the country, a mission that will pay well enough for Logan to pay the rent on his farm for a long time. By this time, Hawkeye is nearly blind, and Logan tells him that he will not do any fighting. Together, they make the trip and encounter a lot of horrors along the way.

This story was incredible and kept me engaged the entire time. I’ve read some of Mark Millar’s other stuff and it’s all been good, but this collection really blew my mind. This version of Logan is the same as the one who eventually travels to Marvel’s Earth-616 universe, so anyone who reads the normal Marvel timeline comics needs to read this collection to get a better understanding of Old Man Logan’s backstory.

When we find out the truth about what happened the night Wolverine disappeared, it’s truly tragic and heartbreaking. It also explains why he’s decided to no longer fight. Even though this all takes place in an alternate reality, it carries over to Marvel’s “real world” and has a number of implications that affect those storylines.

The art, done by Steve McNiven, was also wonderful, and dark enough for this sort of story.

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If you’re a fan of Marvel or Wolverine, this tragic story is a must-read. The story combines the depth of one of Marvel’s best characters with a Mad Max-setting to create something truly unique where the heroes fail and the villains have won.


Have you read Old Man Logan? What did you think? Let us know in the comments!




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