Alan Scott is gay. Big whoop. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not because he’s gay. It’s because it’s Alan Scott. I like Alan Scott. I also like most golden age heroes, but unless you read “Justice Society of America” (JSA) his sexual orientation doesn’t impact you. Alan is not a Batman or Superman character who can be seen in several titles. He’s a staple, yes. A major character, no.
DC built up this character “coming out” as if it could be someone like Batman. Which, for several hundred reasons, would never happen (despite what you would believe from watching the old TV show.) They wanted to make you believe it could be any one of the big name characters. It turned out to be Alan Scott. So what is my problem?
My gripe is that DC totally blew this opportunity. They should have made a character with relevance gay, and changed the face of comics. Both Marvel and DC universes had gay characters prior to Alan. Most of them are background characters without their own title. Both universes host other kinds of diversity. Both Marvel and DC have super heroes, aliens, and gods. It’s fitting that they would have homosexual characters. DC could have pushed the limit and gone with Victor Stone (Cyborg) or Aquaman. They didn’t. DC walked the middle of the road, and continued the time-honored tradition of turning characters into gimmicks.
Thank goodness for characters like Midnighter and Apollo from The Authority. They show that sexual preference, like having a different race or gender, doesn’t have to be the defining characteristic of a person. That good characters, like people, are not defined by small things like labels, but in their relationships with those that know them.