Thursday, April 16, 2009

Update: Northstar

My post about Northstar the other day may have been a bit misleading, so I want to clear a few things up, as well as drop an update:

Jean-Paul is not currently a dead character in "normal" continuity. He was resurrected, and has been a very minor character since that resurrection, with his status as openly gay man played down quite a bit. My post was intended to be much more about the proliferation of straight relationships that comics characters engage in versus the practically non-existent LGBT relationships we see in mainstream comics than it was about the character being dead. It was also intended to collect information and articles on this character that many who come here may not have known about because of his nearly-invisible status in the Marvel U, despite his groundbreaking nature.

However, it looks like that less-than status is about to change, as the current writer for Uncanny, Matt Fraction, has plans to bring the character back into the fold of the X-Men as of
Uncanny X-Men #508 on stands now (spoilers ahead if you read UXM and have not picked up 508):

Since the terrible Decimation of mutants in the Marvel U, the X-Men have been in the process of gathering up and providing solace for those mutants left in the world with or without powers. At the end of #508, Logan goes to Canada to ask Jean-Paul to join the team--not just to have another longtime mutant friend and ally nearby, but also because the team realized one of their tactical weaknesses: no speedsters.

I am optimistic about where Fraction, a very talented writer, will take the story. Already he's made some very smart choices, having Jean-Paul immediately bring up that he does not intend to be merely the token gay boy for team PR now that the team is based in San Francisco. Not only that, but Jean-Paul very openly acknowledges another man as his lover. My hope is that with all the shakeup going on at Marvel currently, more progressive heads will prevail and we won't be treated to endless scenes of Jean-Paul pining away for Bobby Drake like we were before. I trust Fraction (his work on Invincible Iron Man right now is just dynamite, as I've blogged about before). If the editorial staff will let him cut loose, I'm sure we'll see a much more responsible, progressive take on the character than we've seen before.

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