People have been asking why, when Peter and MJ’s marriage had to end for story reasons, Northstar getting married is okay. Editor Tom Brevoort answered this on his Formspring:
Do you not think there’s hypocrisy in undoing the editorially mandated marriage of Peter and Mj and then doing something like the marriage of Storm and BP and Northstar and Kyle? The marriage of Peter and Mj felt far less forced or sudden. :
No, because different characters require different things. This is similar to arguing that it’s unfair that Reed Richards is so smart–that works for his character, but wouldn’t work as well for, say, Ben Grimm. Different character. Also, and take this from somebody who was there as a reader and watched it happen, the marriage of Peter and MJ was absolutely as forced and sudden, probably more so. It’s just had the advantage of having been a status quo for so long that a lot of readers grew up with it and accepted it. We’ve never said that no characters should be married, the point is that Spider-Man, the most popular youth-based character in the entertainment world, probably shouldn’t be married.
For more on the matter, gay writer Andrew Wheeler explains why he thinks the Northstar-Kyle nuptials don’t make storytelling sense.
Assuming Northstar’s marriage works out, he will now never get that love story. He will never be a romantic leading man. I’m not saying that marriage is the death of romance, but it doesn’t offer the frisson of uncertainty that energizes romantic stories.
And if Northstar’s marriage doesn’t work out, that’s even worse. Marvel couldn’t have Spider-Man get divorced because they thought it would send a negative message, so they came up with the single worst plotline in the history of comics: a superhero sacrificing his marriage to Satan. Think how much greater the stigma will be if Marvel undoes its headline-grabbing first gay marriage. It would imply that gay marriages are less stable than straight marriages. They can’t set that precedent. This marriage is a one-way street.
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.