The plans James Gunn laid show that the DCU is dedicated to fixing a major problem that’s plagued other major franchises. Unfortunately, the last regime at DC Studios left a lot of problems for Gunn and Peter Safran to solve. They’ve said as much, bluntly for that matter, criticizing a lack of connectivity and a cohesive creative vision. While their plans are still years away, with only one project thus far with a confirmed release date – Superman: Legacy on July 11th, 2025 – there is a clear sense of structure and a confidence going forward.
As the new DCU builds from the ground up essentially, it can avoid or even outright reverse some of the big problems that have plagued their predecessors. Remarkably, even the comics’ industry is being positively affected by the DCU’s new approach, with DC Comics seeing boosted sales of the various comics Gunn has specifically cited as inspiration for the new slate. That must give Gunn and Safran a great sense of certainty that audiences are interested in their vision. Of course, there’s still more to rectify from the past, but their plans thus far give sincere hope that the DCU will be the positive push forward that superhero entertainment needs.
Paradise Lost Can Embrace Themyscira’s History Of LGBTQ+ Characters
Particularly, these plans express a dedication to showcasing all sorts of perspectives, and projects like Paradise Lost, specifically, can finally feature LGBTQ+ points-of-view. This television show will center on Themyscira, home of the Amazons, before Wonder Woman’s birth. It’s been described as reminiscent of Game of Thrones, likely for a high fantasy setting with epic battles. While she won’t feature in it, Paradise Lost sets up Wonder Woman nonetheless by delving deep into Themysciran culture and history to give her even stronger foundations to stand on. As a colony of incredibly powerful and intelligent women, queer love is integral to Themyscira, and Paradise Lost’s authenticity.
Wonder Woman herself is openly bisexual – a surprising fact to non-comic book readers as that has yet to be shown in any of her on-screen portrayals. Whether Gal Gadot returns to the role or not, that must be incorporated into her characterization. Aptly, however, the Amazons are not a culture that labels sexuality in modern day terms. They are a people who celebrate life and love in all of its forms. It’s not gay marriage to them. It’s just marriage. This mentality needs to be shown more, and Paradise Lost can help integrate it into the DCU and the genre at large.
The Authority’s Midnighter & Apollo Are Significant Gay Characters
The new slate came with one surprise – The Authority film. The Authority team hails originally from the WildStorm imprint, but Gunn is bringing them into the mix right away. They operate quite differently than the classic Justice League, and two members in particular are very important to the larger landscape. Midnighter and Apollo are not only powerful and interesting analogues of Batman and Superman, they’re gay and married to each other. Both are among the first openly gay superheroes in comics, following the path forged by Marvel Comics’ Northstar. Getting their working and romantic relationship right is key to The Authority’s success.
The Authority featuring early in the new DCU is significant. With Superman: Legacy it can finally put the Snyderverse and the demands for its return to rest, and specifically with Midnighter and Apollo, The Authority will establish strong foundations for the DCU to prominently feature LGBTQ+ characters. The loving, yet dangerously powerful duo’s integration into DC Comics helped pave the way for better representation in the comics, and the DCU should be no exception. The Authority and their future beyond can express the many facets to their life together from them dating to marrying to adopting a child.
LGBTQ+ Perspectives Are Crucial For The DCU
To be frank, the new DCU cannot succeed without accurately and authentically showcasing LGBTQ+ perspectives. Whether in the mystical realm of Themyscira in Paradise Lost, the modern streets of Gotham in The Brave and the Bold, or the vast wonder of the cosmos beyond, the DC Universe is home to extraordinary queer characters. Yet, fans might not know if they don’t read the comics, which has celebrated these characters and creators exponentially more and more over the years. With some exceptions – like the Arrowverse’s Dreamer and recent animated series like Young Justice and Harley Quinn – DC movies and television shows have fallen short when it comes to LGBTQ+ representation.
The new DCU can lay groundwork early to showcase many LGBTQ+ characters. Paradise Lost can introduce more than Diana as Wonder Woman, but also Nubia, Artemis, and/or Diana’s lost brother, Jason. The Brave and the Bold incorporating an established Bat-Family means there’s hope for Tim Drake’s Robin or Batwoman to appear. Lanterns may feature other iconic Green Lanterns including Alan Scott. All in all, there’s an exciting future on the horizon, the DCU just has to deliver. Every person, from the youngest child to the eldest adult, deserves to see themselves wielding the Lasso of Truth or a Green Lantern Ring. The new DCU can finally do that.
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