Over this past weekend, nerds from around the world converged on the San Diego Convention Center for Comic-Con 2019. Every year the renowned convention not only showcases the best in comic books, pop art, entertainment and geek culture, but also features myriad instances of LGBT inclusion, promotion of queer culture and homoerotic gay Comic-Con cosplay.
For those who couldn’t attend this year’s big event in person, we’ve assembled a collection of gay Comic-Con 2019 moments — from big film announcements to new comic titles — for you.
Here are 13 gay Comic-Con moments from this year’s convention:
1. The Thor Franchise Gets Super-Queer
Both actress Tessa Thompson and Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige confirmed during this year’s convention that Thompson’s character, Valkyrie, will be the MCU’s very first LGBTQ superhero. As the new “King of Asgard” following Endgame, she’ll be seeking a queen in Thor: Love and Thunder, the fourth film in the Thor series. The announcement has added weight since Thompson herself identifies as bisexual.
2. Fence Debuts at the Con
Written by C.S. Pacat, this Boom Studios comic book series explores the homoerotic underbelly of competitive fencing at an elite boys boarding school. Featuring art by Johanna the Mad and colors by Joana Lafuente, the trade paperback debuted through Boom at this year’s con.
3. A First Look at Batwoman
On Saturday, The CW screened the pilot of its latest entry in Greg Berlanti’s Arrowverse. Out actress Ruby Rose plays the titular lesbian heroine, who takes over the mantle of Gotham’s caped crusader from her cousin, Bruce Wayne.
4. George Takei’s Big Announcements
The openly gay Star Trek alum announced two projects, both exploring Japanese internment during and following WWII. The second season of the AMC horror anthology series The Terror: Infamy will be set in an internment camp and star Takei. The actor and advocate also unveiled his new graphic memoir They Called Us Enemy, based on his own childhood memories spent in a U.S. internment camp.
5. X-Barbies Are Here!
If you were one of the many boys who were told to play with action figures but really wanted to dress up their sister’s dolls, then you’re in luck! In celebration of Marvel’s 80th anniversary, Mattel is releasing a new line of Mystique, Storm and Dark Phoenix Barbies. They’ll make your inner child feel … homo superior.
6. He-Man Toys Are Coming Back
In other toy news, Mattel will be releasing articulated updates of one of its most classic action figure lines, Masters of the Universe, including a Comic-Con 2019 exclusive double-pack of He-Man and his alter-ego Prince Adam. Disappointingly, Adam’s iconic pink vest has been inexplicably changed to blue. Luckily He-Man still wears his furry underpants.
7. The Ultimate Gay Cosplay Contest
Now in its 15th year, Hillcrest gay bar Rich’s hosted its annual cosplay costume contest — the Heroes vs. Villains Party — on Saturday night. The big winner this year was a musclebound, gender-bent take on Street Fighter’s Chun-Li. Ha-DUDE-ken!
8. A Panel About Queer Love
Prism Comics and Stacked Deck Press hosted a panel featuring emerging LGBT comic creators discussing their upcoming queer anthology, Crush: First Love, New Talent. The book explores myriad perspectives on first loves told though writers and artists of diverse sexual and gender orientations.
9. A Peek at Steven Universe: The Movie
The film’s first trailer debuted during its own panel, which featured the hit show’s creator Rebecca Sugar as well as the Crystal Gems voice cast: Deedee Magno (Pearl), Michaela Dietz (Amethyst), Estelle (Garnet) and Shelby Rabara (Peridot). Steven Universe: The Movie will premiere on Cartoon Network on Sept 2. Watch the trailer yourself above!
10. Out in Comics Year 32: Tearing Down a Stonewall
Credited as “the comic world’s longest running panel,” moderator Andy Mangels assembled a showcase of LGBT writers, artists and notables, including Che Grayson (Bitch Planet Triple Feature comic), Vincent J Roth (Surge of Power film series), and Chad Michaels (of RuPaul’s Drag Race) to discuss the past, present and future of queer comics.
11. Dream Daddy
On Friday at the Lyceum Theatre, the team behind the DILF dating simulator celebrated the game’s two-year anniversary, as well as the release of the Dream Daddy comic book from Oni Press.
12. Sina Grace Shows Up at Comic-Con 2019
This openly gay comic creator (and Hornet user) participated in several panels at Comic-Con 2019, including Friday’s “BOOM! Studios: Discover Yours” and Saturday’s “Reboot: Reinvigorating a Tired Franchise, or Worst Idea Ever?” He also discussed how homophobia potentially influenced Marvel’s decision to cancel his popular Iceman series.
13. Black and Queer in Popular Media, a panel
Moderated by Viktor Kerney (StrangeLore), this panel discussion centered around the contributions of Black LGBTQ talent in comics, plus representation in sci-fi, fantasy and superhero genres.
What were your favorite gay Comic-Con 2019 moments?
Featured image via Getty Images