DC Comics recently saw a backlash from the LGBT community for hiring Orson Scott Card, who has been called homophobic. The company issued a statement supporting his personal freedom of speech but they clearly don’t share his views.
In Batgirl #19 Barbara Gordon AKA Batgirl comes clean to roommate, Alysia Yeoh who reciprocates by revealing she’s a transgender woman (bisexual).
Alysia won’t be a “public service announcement” writer Gail Simone told Wired.
“Being trans is just part of her story,” she explained. “If someone loved her before, and doesn’t love her after, well — that’s a shame, but we can’t let that kind of thinking keep comics in the 1950s forever.”
This won’t be the first instance of gender bending in the DC universe, which is a world of magic, shape-shifting, brain-swapping, and cloning.
“Those characters exist [and] that’s great, but I wanted to have trans characters who aren’t fantasy-based,” she acknowledged. “And I feel like there’s a lot there yet to do.”
Marvel comics featured just such a magical transformation in Avengers Arena #8. Katy Bashir AKA Apex has an emotional outburst. “No one ever understands,” she says before passing out in a pile of snow. She emerges as boy named Tim, which would certainly come as a shock to her womanizing boyfriend, Kid Briton, that is if he hadn’t been killed in the previous issue.
A more down-to-Earth example takes place in FF #6. The Fantastic Four adopt a group of super evolved Moloids, subterranean mutants that typically lack any gender. They initially assumed male identity as demonstrated by a very creepy Valentine’s Day issue but Tong admits he’s been living a lie.
“I have a girl inside of me,” he declares. “I tried to be a boy like you, but there is no boy here. And I do not wish to be what I am not any longer.”
His brothers embrace him and they proudly parade around the Baxter Building. Scott Lang AKA Ant-Man is noticeably confused but Darla Deering AKA Miss Thing cheers, “Good for her.”