Oh Happy Pride Month, indeed! I’ve wittered on about improving LGBT representation in superhero media for a long time. One might even say it’s like I have an agenda. Well, it seems that Eternal (Gay) Lord of the Realm Sir Ian McKellen agrees with me.
In a recent interview with Variety, McKellen, who starred as Master of Magnetism, Magneto in many of Fox’s X-Men movies, bemoans the lack of LGBT representation within superhero movies.
I wouldn’t say the films coming out of the mainstream are quite as related to what’s going on in the real world as I would like them to be. One indication of that is LGBT people don’t really get quite a big enough say. If you’re one of those initials yourself, you do notice that actually these movies are not about me at all. Frankly, looking at the images of some of these superheroes it’s a surprise to me they aren’t gay.
It is rather surprising given that X-Men as a franchise is all about people who are different, and is one of the few comic franchises to feature quite a few LGBT characters in its history. Yet, these never seem to translate to the big screen. There as yet haven’t been any actual queer characters, and even characters that are queer in the source material that have made it to the films do not appear to be so once on the big screen (Mystique being a very good example).
McKellen also expressed his sadness over not getting to wear anything quite as flamboyant as his comic counterpart, never once getting to wear the red and purple.
“I wasn’t allowed to wear that outfit. I don’t look like Magneto in the comics—[where he’s] always shot from the crotch level.”
Well, costumes have started changing in the movies. The last two X-Men films have introduced *shock* colour into the costumes, so maybe, just maybe, we can take another step towards some LGBT representation in the films as well as the comics source material now, eh?