by Elana Levin
Baking Diversity into DC Rebirth’s Creative Teams
Gay superhero The Ray is being taken out of cold storage and will star in his own one-shot before being added to the Justice League of America’s roster.
This is particularly noteworthy because writer Steve Orlando and artist Stephen Byrne are bi or gay. This is the first time an all LGBTQ creative team has been on that character. This is fantastic news for those of us who believe LGBTQ characters’ stories benefit from having LGBTQ talent telling them. Especially when the writer has such a strong track record of writing comics that speak authentically of queer experiences and pick up serious accolades in and out of the comics press.
Similarly, Orlando has brought on co-writer Jody Houser, of Valiant Comics’ game-changing Faith series as a co-writer for his two female led Rebirth one-shots: Vixen and Killer Frost.
The artist on Vixen is Jamal Campbell, a fresh talent who’s recently begun drawing for DC and Marvel. He brings a polished style and expertise at drawing black hair to a title that really needs both of those things to succeed, what with its black female fashion model protagonist.
Killer Frost artist Mirka Andolfo has worked on DC Bombshells and Ms. Marvel, two series known for massive female fan bases. These connections could contribute to the book’s potential success.
One-shots may not sound like much at first but they are deliberately elevating these characters’ profiles in a more lasting way because they’ll be worked into the Justice League of America team.
I want to make sure fans take notice, especially fans of diverse comics. And with that, I’m updating my pull list.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.