1. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.

    Gay superheroes

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by WriterDude, Aug 8, 2011.

    The story I'm writing is far too complex to put in a single post, so bear with me here, please. But to be extremely short, I have two questions:

    1. If Batman and Robin where the same age and gay, would you still like them? and what if they were female?

    2. How far would you go to feel loved?

    To elaborate as best I can, I have one character (Cara) who has been trained since birth to become a Batman-style superhero. She doesn't have superhuman powers, but she obviously very strong, agile, has quick reflexes and all that. The drawback is she isn't entirely human (yellow eyes, sharp teeth, small horns etc), so she has to live in secret. In other words, she has literally been all alone the last 20 years.

    Then there's Sharon. She was a cop with several friends, a loving (male) fiancé, even a brother, two sisters, a few nieces and the occasional nephew. And caring parents, of course. The whole thing. But for reason I won't explain too much here, she has ended up in Cara's headquarter and was faced with two choices: Either become Cara's sidekick (her Robin, if you will) or die. And to make a long story short, she accepted the job.

    Now here's the thing: Cara has been alone for 20 years, and she doesn't know how to be around people. But now that Sharon is around, Cara is painfully reminded what it feels like to have a friend. As for Sharon, she has lost everything and can never tell her own family that she is still alive. She is painfully aware that she has literally lost everything. Cara and Sharon both know they are all alone in the world, and they desperately need company. Cara has never been sexually active, and Sharon had a male fiance. But even so, do you think it's logical that they end up together? And would that be ok?

    Keep in mind I don't think of them as lesbians. Not that I'm against it, but the story isn't about that. What I'm wondering about is if I should let them go all the way (without going into detail in the story, of course), or should they remain friends only?
     
  2. Melzaar the Almighty
    Offline

    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2010
    Messages:
    1,792
    Likes Received:
    55
    Location:
    UK
    Do whatever the story requires - bear in mind that it can look gratuitous if you just throw it in, or the characters aren't developed from every other angle... Sounds though like you're thinking enough about it that you won't under think it.

    just write it :) You clearly have all the story worked out already anyway.
     
  3. proserpine
    Offline

    proserpine Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2011
    Messages:
    69
    Likes Received:
    2
    1. If Batman and Robin where the same age and gay, would you still like them? and what if they were female?

    I don't think their age or sexual preference would change how I feel about them as superheroes. If they were in any sort of romantic relationship, however, it changes the dynamic of the partnership, and the stakes at hand. The same would go for if they were Batwoman and Robyn.

    2. How far would you go to feel loved?

    I wouldn't give up my values, beliefs, etc. to BE loved, but I think people in love will do pretty much anything for their love.

    If I were you, I would explore the idea, but I probably wouldn't make them a couple. Usually, sexual tension and the creation of relationships are more fun to follow than relationships themselves.

    Good luck with your writing.
     
  4. Fullmetal Xeno
    Offline

    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2011
    Messages:
    1,364
    Likes Received:
    141
    Location:
    Kingdom of Austniad

    Before i reply, let me ask you this question? Why does everybody assume Batman and Robin are gay? Im just wondering. But yes, it's your story, you can make them lesbian if you want. What makes it interesting, is when a gay character has a detailed background where it explains why they became gay. If you write out the whole reason why, without overshadowing your story, it could be with enough hard work, a character to relate too. If you do this for both, you will have a much more refurbished outline where you can pretty much just build on from there. Im not a professional with gay characters, (i don't think i'll ever have gay characters in my stories, but it depends. Provably not though.) but that's how i look at it. Good Luck
     
  5. NateSean
    Offline

    NateSean Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2011
    Messages:
    254
    Likes Received:
    16
    Location:
    Salem, Mass
    No one in the context of this discussion has outright said they are gay. It was just a hypothetical question.

    And it's less of an assumption and more of an observation of the number of really awkward scenes in the comics from Robin's intro right up to the movies with the very *ahem* detailed costumes.

    What gets me is that Robin's earlier incarnations were minors. So rather than implying Bruce Wayne is gay, people were basically implying that he was a pedophile. Whole other thread, but something to think about when you (not you specifically) make a joke about someone's sexuality.

    Apparently they got the same jokes from a 70's superheroin show called Electra Woman and Dyna Girl.

    I'd be very interested in reading a story with a gay superhero. Depending on how you pull it off, you could very well have a modern Watchmen on your hands.
     
  6. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    Xeno, I don't think everybody assumes that Batman and Robin are gay. It's just fun for some people to joke about.

    But look at the required lifestyle for a superhero-sidekick team. They're on call all the time. HUGE portions of their lives have to be kept secret from everybody except themselves. There's no room in their lives for opposite-sex companionship, really, because there's no time, and that would cheat the opposite-sex lover(s), and the nature of the business would always put these people the superheroes love in extreme danger. So any sort of normal human relationships are excluded from the superheroes' lives, UNLESS they are sexually involved with each other. So it's a benefit to them if they're gay - they get a love life as well as a crimefighting life, and the two reinforce each other.

    I have no idea if Batman and Robin are gay. But it would be good for them if they were, and very, very difficult for them if they weren't.
     
  7. Rassidan
    Offline

    Rassidan Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Messages:
    116
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Erlanger, KY , United States
    For me I see no reason to leave out homosexuality, If your main character is gay then they are gay. It might be harder to get published through certain companies but it is your story.
     
  8. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.
    Here's the core of the problem. They are not really lesbians at all, only incredibly lonely. Sharon had a male fiance, and if she could, she would be dating men. Cara have never had the luxury of any kind of love life, or even friendship. But neither of them have the luxury of choosing who they want to be with. It's either get romantically involved with each other or stay alone. That's it. That's their only options. So if you are cut off from the world and no one can ever know you even exist, and if the only other person in the entire world you have contact with is the same gender as you, could you get romantically involved to avoid being alone?

    As for Batman and Robin, that was just an example. I might as well have said Green Arrow and Speedy, or perhaps Booster Gold and Blue Beetle. But Batman and Robin are better known. ;)
     
  9. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    The Pied Piper (a Flash villain who gave up criminal activity) is gay. That was brought out in the 90s, but without a lot of fuss.

    I'm sure there are other examples.
     
  10. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.
    True, but the Piper was a minor villain. I'm talking about the main charactes. Besides, they are not really gay. Or at least not gay by choice. It's either that or be all alone their entire lives. I'm mostly interested in that dilemma. You can think of it like a prison, I guess. If you were in prison for life, could you fall in love with someone the same gender as you if you knew you would never get out and never got any visitors?
     
  11. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    So basically, they have been working together so closely and for so long that they are inseparable and have a bond closer than many marriages.

    They complete each other's sentences, they are completely comfortable and have no need of barriers between them. And they probably have no room in their lives for anyone else right now.

    So what's the problem? How others perceive them?
     
  12. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.
    It's more the prison-scenario. Let's say you were sent to prison on a life sentence, and you knew you would never get any visitors. Basically the outside world doesn't exist to you anymore, and you don't exist to them. Even your own family think you are dead. Now imagine you get a cell mate who suffers the same fate. And now imagine the entire prison is empty other than the two of you. When you first meet, you don't even like each other, and it takes a long time before you start to trust each other. Maybe you never do. But if you knew your options where solitary for life or falling in love with another guy (or girl, if you are a woman), what would you do?
     
  13. Yoshiko
    Offline

    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Messages:
    758
    Likes Received:
    27
    Unless your novel is specifically about the character's sexuality (which it doesn't sound like it is) then don't let it control your decisions. If you want to make the superhero gay then just go right ahead - it's your character, after all. If a reader's opinion changes based on your character's sexual orientation then it says more about the reader rather than the characters or the author.


    I know next to nothing about Batman and Robin, so can't answer your specific question about them.
     
  14. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.
    Thanks. The story isn't about their sexuality at all, but more about the emotional stuff. I think I'll hint to things at first and see how it goes, then explore it a bit more if needed. :)
     
  15. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    Please tell me you aren't writing the "women in prison" gag.
     
  16. Fullmetal Xeno
    Offline

    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2011
    Messages:
    1,364
    Likes Received:
    141
    Location:
    Kingdom of Austniad
    Well, it might seem as a joke. But where im at everybody takes it seriously. Everybody assumes that they are gay. Im still trying to figure out why they are even making fun of them. I don't see how there is a hint of homosexuality thrown into the mix.
     
  17. EMSchell2009
    Offline

    EMSchell2009 Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Toledo, Ohio, United States
    Before I read any more posts, I am going to answer in my own way. I think that homosexuality is a part of our daily lives today. I think that this type of love is just like any other and can be as real and honest as any other. I know a man who has been with his partner for literally years and is still with him while many others who are heterosexual are not. I would like your characters whichever way you are writing them. That is to answer whether or not they would still be likeable.

    Now let me say that if there is one thing that I have learned about characters it is that they very often write themselves. If that is how things are between them, I would think that the story would be stilted if you left it out. YOu have a story demanding to be told, tell it and apologize to no one.
     
  18. Mikeyface
    Offline

    Mikeyface Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    4
    Location:
    Plano, TX
    Captain Jack Harkness from Torchwood is openly gay on the show. He's also about the loneliest character imaginable (as living for however many thousand years would do to a man.)

    He's a superhero to me.

    On point: I think you're complicating a gripping story with an excess of difficult to understand character ideas. If there is any connection between these two characters, then the brunt of your focus should be on their chemistry. The reader should be quietly cheering that these characters get together-- any difficult to comprehend roadblocks will just dilute whatever chemistry you've worked to create.

    If they belong together, don't fight it.
     
  19. WriterDude
    Offline

    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2011
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    37
    Location:
    Icy cold wastes of Hell. Aka Norway.
    Thanks guys. And I think you are right, I'm overcomplicating things here. I mean the story is far too complicated to tell here, so it comes down to "does the story make sense?" And I think it does.That should be all that matters. I love the story and characters, so I'm sure someone else will too. :)
     
  20. Islander
    Offline

    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,542
    Likes Received:
    59
    Location:
    Sweden
    This is what happens in real life. People who are usually heterosexual can enter homosexual relationships when no partners of the other sex are available, for example, in prison or at sea. The same thing can happen to animals in captivity, for example, two birds of the same sex kept in the same cage.

    So I see no problem whatsoever with the believability of your characters' relationship. You just need to show the reasons to the reader.

    I can also see additional reasons for it to happen. For example, when two people experience great danger together, they tend to develop a very strong trust. The rush people get from fear can often turn into sexual excitement (either during the fear, or in the relief when it's over).

    As for Batman and Robin, I don't think they're officially homosexual, but some of their writers seem to have wanted them to be, and planted hints about it. For example, there's a comic panel where they seem to sleep in the same bed, and which child psychiatrist Frederick Wertham interpreted as homosexual during the anti-comics hysteria in the 1950's.

    I'm guessing their costumes and three men (Batman, Robin and Alfred) living together in a secluded house also contributed to the speculations. And Bruce Wayne acts like a playboy to hide his true identity - classical case of overcompensation :)
     
  21. DBock
    Offline

    DBock Member

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2011
    Messages:
    74
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    Chicago
    It depends on the character but I don't think being sexually deprived is going to make someone instantly latch on to another person. There would be something that would need to be set in motion that would make them attracted to this person, and more than that make them feel that this attraction was acceptable to the other character.
     
  22. GreenRain
    Offline

    GreenRain Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2011
    Messages:
    20
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Hemet, CA
    It looks like you have the makings of your character conflicts right there.

    Points: Women can do things in public, like hold hands and run to the washroom in public places, without necessarily calling attention to anything, unusual. Men, ¡Ha! We can't even wrestle in private places anymore without some homopho :eek: ….

    Considerations, Is your main character not human? Sensual relations might get complicated just from all that, um, oddness. For Cara the isolation would play a big roll, more than the sudden availability of human, eh, Sentient contact would.

    Other options, not every species is bisexual [Of course xe's homosexual, they have no other choice!], some are even naturally transsexual (Yeah, got some of each written into some story or another). Not to mention, 1:100 human births don't really fit the doctor's description of one gender or another. Yours seem more in keeping with an emotional social maturity issue.

    What's my point? You don't want them boinking on page, but the interpersonal conflict between two persons forced into a new kind of challenge could be an interesting subplot with possible relief for the more stressful situation. [I mean an up and coming battle. :D] And this would be a dynamic you could pull off with two females that you would have some trouble selling with two males, or even co-ed teams.
     
  23. CosmicHallux
    Offline

    CosmicHallux Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2011
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    3
    Xena and Gabrielle were gay. At least I think they were gay.

    I've heard new theories that sexual preference isn't all cut and dry. People lay somewhere on a spectrum or continuum between homo and heterosexual, according to my old Women's Studies teacher.

    I've known a lot of girls who experimented with other women, though they weren't strictly homosexual. I don't think it's that uncommon, and female/female bonds can be very deep and complex with or without sexual intimacy.

    If Batman and Robin were gay then that would change my perspective. I only liked them when I was a teenager, and that was because I had a crush on Robin from the movie (Chris ODonall). I doubt I would have had a crush on the character if he was gay--but who knows, I was a teenager. Other than that, I liked Catwoman better than either of them and read her comic for years, despite her exaggerated anatomy (which just looks weird).
     
  24. Cogito
    Offline

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    35,935
    Likes Received:
    2,043
    Location:
    Massachusetts, USA
    No, they weren't.
     
  25. CosmicHallux
    Offline

    CosmicHallux Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2011
    Messages:
    130
    Likes Received:
    3
    Well, fine. They weren't definitely gay, but there were some suggestions in the show. They kissed, or it looked like they kissed, and there was also a show where Xena and Gabrielle get married in reincarnated bodies (Edit: um...I mean their personalities are reincarnated into other bodies).
     

Share This Page