It seems that one of Marvel Comics' oldest characters, not to mention one of the original five members of the X-Men, is finally getting their own ongoing series after fifty years. Marvel just announced plans for a solo Iceman series, which will spin out of events of the upcoming Inhumans vs. X-Men event. The publisher just revealed a teaser image for Iceman #1 via Twitter, with a release date of spring 2017. The image shows various moments from Iceman’s comic book history, but no creative team was attached to the announcement, which you can see below.
— Marvel Entertainment (@Marvel) October 17, 2016
Iceman receiving his own ongoing series means a lot more now than it would have just a few years ago, as in the last couple of years it's been revealed that Bobby Drake is gay, and has been living in the closet all this time. It's worth noting however that fans had speculated for decades that Bobby might actually be gay, so writer Brian Michael Bendis didn't pull this idea from thin air, despite what some fans might think.
What isn't clear is just which version of Iceman we are talking about here, as the Marvel universe currently has two -- the teenage Iceman from the past, who actually came out of the closet first, and the adult version, who only admitted being gay once his younger self confronted him about it. My money is on it being the elder Iceman, if only because seniority rules.
While there are several LGBT heroes in both Marvel and DC right now, most of them were created as being gay from the get-go. Characters like Batwoman, Bunker, Wiccan, Hulkling, Midnighter, and others represent a youthful take on being LGBT in the modern world, which means they are "out and proud" from the moment they first appear on the page.
While all that's great, Iceman's character journey represents something else, which is the millions of gay people who live in denial for years, live a straight lifestyle for much of their adult lives, before finally coming to terms with who they are. This is something we really haven't seen in almost any of the current LGBT superheroes, or at least not any high profile ones, and they're an important part of the LGBT community who need to be represented too. Kudos to Marvel for being willing to take that on.
Are you happy that Iceman is finally getting his moment in the spotlight? And which longtime X-Man do you think deserves a solo series next? Let us know your thoughts down below in the comments.
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Image: Marvel Comics