RollingStone Magzine Culture  

Back in 1992, Marvel Comics made headlines by revealing that Northstar, a Canadian superhero associated with Alpha Flight and the X-Men, was gay. Twenty years later, the character is back in the news as he is set to wed his longtime partner Kyle in Astonishing X-Men #51, in stores on June 20th. "When gay marriage became legal in New York State, it raised obvious questions since most of our heroes reside in New York State. Northstar is the first openly gay character in comics and he's been in a longterm relationship with his partner Kyle so the big question was – how would this change his relationship?," says Marvel Comics editor-in-chief Axel Alonso. "Our comics are always best when they respond to and reflect developments in the real world. We've been doing that for decades, and this is just the latest expression of that."

As an X-Man, Northstar routinely fights against bigotry, as he is a mutant, and mutants are the most feared minority group in the Marvel Universe. Astonishing X-Men writer Marjorie Liu looked to Northstar's relationship with Kyle as a way to write an inspiring story about characters who feel like outsiders even among outsiders. "Here are two people, trying to live their lives – mutant and gay, black and gay – empowered in their own ways, but also fringe-dwellers," says Liu. "And they're making it happen. They're living life on their own terms.  It doesn't matter that it's a superhero comic, the message is: You can do the same thing."
Though Northstar has been in comics since debuting in Uncanny X-Men in the late Seventies, Kyle, a regular human and not a superhero, was created more recently, so Liu has been working on fleshing out his character. "I looked at relationships between police officers, soldiers, etcetera, and their spouses," she says. "You have, for example, one partner who is always going off into dangerous situations, whose 'team' at work is an important, integral, part of their lives, and then you've got the person left behind. Like Kyle, who has a perfectly wonderful life, a great job, but is a human man who has to watch his partner go fight aliens or giant robots, or insane super villains at the drop of a hat, and there's nothing he can do to help. On a bad day, he might even be a target himself. So, thinking about Kyle in those terms, empathizing with him, I've had to mull the strains and stresses that being with Northstar would put on him, those parts of his life that he feels are lacking, what he wants long-term that he's afraid he can't have, and so on."

These tensions will inform Liu's Astonishing X-Men stories going forward, but Alonso says the couple will also have to confront homophobia from Northstar's teammates. "Let me make it clear – this story begins with a marriage, but it ain't over with the marriage," he says. "We'd be doing the story a disservice not to reflect the controversy around it. While a lot of Marvel Universe characters will be attending Northstar's wedding, not everyone is going to accept the invitation and not everyone is going to accept the validity of Northstar's vows. At least one of Northstar's team members is going to turn down the invitation, and that's going to make for an interesting dynamic." 

5/10-16にウォールストリートジャーナル日本語版が行ったアンケート調査によると、2886票あった投票のうち、賛成が88%の2553票と大多数。なーんとアメリカより賛成多いんですよー!!! WSJ編集部も驚きの結果という記事まで掲載したほど。賛成88?! 実はアメリカ以上に同性婚に寛容な日本

 つい先日、オバマ大統領が同性婚に賛成を表明してアメリカで大論争が起こってるとお伝えしましたが、今度は、スーパーヒーローものの漫画(Astonishing X-Men)の最新号で、ゲイのスーパーヒーロー(Northstar)が長年お付き合いしていた彼氏と結婚して各種メディアが報じる話題に・・・。たかが漫画と思う方もいるかもしれませんが、アメリカではスーパーヒーローものの漫画の人気や影響力は極めて大きいのです。実際、こないだ公開されたスーパーヒーローものの映画「アベンジャーズ(The Avengers)」もアメリカ映画史上最高レベルの大ヒットを記録中。そんな背景もあって漫画まで注目されてるんですね。オバマさんが同性婚を認めたと言っても、アメリカの世論はまだまだ賛否両論がケンケンガクガク(喧喧諤諤)の状況ですので、またこれで同性婚論争(ろんそう)が激化(げきか)しそうな気配(けはい)・・・。で、


同性愛者の人権に対する“平和的な”意思の示し方。 世界的な盛り上がりを見せている、ソチ冬季オリンピック。華やかなお祭りムードの中にあって、開会式の際には同性愛に対するロシアの対応に疑問を投げかけるようなニュースも流れていました。 そんな同性愛者に対する人権を求める「Glove of Love」というキャンペーンのご紹介です。寒い冬。手を護るために手袋をする人も多い中、 男性2人がちょっと変わった形の手袋をしています。これは、寒さをしのげるだけでなく、 中で手をつないでいても周りには見えないようにできる手袋。 しかし、その手袋の形はハート形をしており、「愛の形は人それぞれで、誰にでも愛する権利があることを主張」するために 作られています。また、ロシアの法律に対する抗議の意味と、注目を集める五輪とを掛けて、 オリンピック柄のビジュアルも作られました。国際的で、とてもナイーブな問題なので、 何が正しいのか判断するのは難しいですが、 ただ一方的に批判するよりも、こういった静かで平和的な主張の仕方の方が、訴えかけてくるメッセージが強い気がします。 


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