DC Pride #1 celebrates DC’s LGBTQIA+ characters with a heartfelt one-shot anthology that captures the true spirit of its greatest heroes.
To celebrate Pride Month, DC Comics released DC Pride #1, an 80-page, one-shot anthology featuring many of DC’s LGBTQIA+ characters. Created by a diverse cast of creative minds, DC Pride #1 is an exceptional example of how far LGBTQIA+ representation has come in comics. The oversized issue pays tribute to its queer characters and presents their most memorable and resonating stories. By using DC’s deep roster of heroes, the publisher is able to shine a spotlight on the vibrant voices that make the DC Universe feel welcoming to so many fans.
DC Pride #1 is a compilation of nine short series of various lengths. The shortest stories last around four pages and the longest story clocks in at ten pages. The stories within the anthology issue feature a wide range of heroes and villains, with Batwoman, John Constantine, Midnighter, Renee Montoya, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, Green Lantern Alan Scott, Jess Chambers, Pied Piper, Dreamer and Aqualad receiving their own features.
The longest story is also the first, with Batman writer James Tynion IV teaming up with artist Trung Le Nguyen for a story about Batwoman, her sister Beth and how being a twin impacted Kate’s perception of her sexuality while growing up. Tynion previously wrote Kate Kane in Batwoman and in Detective Comics, so he effortlessly slides into her voice. Le Nguyen’s storybook art style is charming and perfect for this story, which relies heavily on narration and the lens of wonder that often comes with childhood. Overall, it’s a touching piece that explores the themes of acceptance and found family — values that are key to the Bat-family. This story stands out as a remarkable glimpse into a side of Gotham that rarely gets the spotlight.
“He’s the Light of My Life” by Sam Johns and Klaus Janson is another highlight within DC Pride #1. Johns’ story delves into Golden Age Green Lantern Alan Scott and depicts how much he struggled with his sexuality until he saw his son living life as a proud, gay man. DC recently revealed that Alan Scott is also gay, which gave Johns the opportunity to show readers why the OG GL stayed in the closet for as long as he did and explores the trauma of his original lost love. Janson’s art style is a great fit for this story, as it makes the section feel like a proper throwback to an older age of comics. This feeling is enhanced by colorist Dave McCaig, who is able to navigate a sea of greens to create a truly atmospheric work of art. Out of every story in this anthology, this one feels like the most must-read for long-time DC fans — especially as Alan Scott becomes one of the focal points for DC’s Infinite Frontier storyline.
DC Pride #1 also features vibrant pinups from fan-favorite artists like Kris Anka, Kevin Wada and Sophie Campbell. These pin-ups provide a fun way to include additional LGBTQIA+ creators and characters in unique settings, such as the Teen Titans at the beach or Catman hanging in the jungle. While enhancing the atmosphere of DC Pride #1, the pinups also show that there are many LGBTQIA+ characters in DC and they can’t all be covered in just one book. Hopefully, DC continues to push for more titles like this to give more opportunities for these characters to shine. If the recent announcement of a new Aqualad mini-series is anything to go by, it seems like just a matter of time before everybody gets their moment.
Overall, DC Pride #1 is an incredibly well-made anthology that features stellar stories from all of the creators involved. This special makes it clear that not only are there many LGBTQIA+ characters worth spotlighting, but that these characters have compelling stories that can connect with a diverse audience across generations. As DC and the comic book industry continue to push for more inclusive stories that reflect the real world, it is comforting to see that these stories are handled with care and given an opportunity to flourish.
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