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DC Comics will make history with first LGBTQ Man of Steel in upcoming issue of 'Superman: Son of Kal-El'
Jon Kent, DC's new Man of Steel, is about to embrace his true identity. The publisher confirmed Monday that the super-powered son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane (named after Clark's father, Jonathan) will come out as bisexual in a history-making issue of Superman: Son of Kal-El from writer Tom Taylor and Artist John Timms.
Not once throughout his 83-year history has the Man of Tomorrow been depicted as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. The news was announced on Monday in honor of National Coming Out Day. "The idea of replacing Clark Kent with another straight white savior felt like a missed opportunity," Taylor told The New York Times.
Like his father before him, Jon falls in love with a mild-mannered journalist by the name of Jay Nakamura. "Following a scene where Superman mentally and physically burns out from trying to save everyone that he can, Jay is there to care for the Man of Steel," teases the official release.
"I've always said everyone needs heroes and everyone deserves to see themselves in their heroes and I’m very grateful DC and Warner Bros. share this idea,” Taylor said in a statement. “Superman's symbol has always stood for hope, for truth and for justice. Today, that symbol represents something more. Today, more people can see themselves in the most powerful superhero in comics."
“I'm incredibly honored to be working beside Tom on the Superman: Son of Kal-El series showing Jon Kent tackling his complex modern life, while also saving the world from its greatest threats, villains, and menaces,” added Timms.
Check out some artwork from the issue below:
Chatting with SYFY WIRE ahead of the series' debut in late July, Taylor talked about his desire for Jon to be a way in which he could question the legacy of Superman. "He looks at what Clark's done and looks to see how he can improve, or wonders why he hasn't done more," the writer explained to us. "And he challenges him on that and says, 'You know what, when you have this much power, when you can see what I can see, when you can see what happens to the world, when you can look at the climate crisis, when you can look at so much inequality, how can you find symptoms?'"
During Taylor's aforementioned interview with The New York Times, the writer stated that a "new Superman had to have new fights — real world problems — that he could stand up to as one of the most powerful people in the world."
"We couldn’t be prouder to tell this important story from Tom Taylor and John Timms,” said DC Chief Creative Officer and Publisher Jim Lee. “We talk a lot about the power of the DC Multiverse in our storytelling and this is another incredible example. We can have Jon Kent exploring his identity in the comics as well as Jon Kent learning the secrets of his family on TV on Superman & Lois. They co-exist in their own worlds and times, and our fans get to enjoy both simultaneously."
Son of Kal-El #5 goes on sale Tuesday, Nov. 9. Timms illustrated the main cover (the gallery above) with colors by Gabe Eltaeb (Justice League) and lettering by Dave Sharpe (Bargirl). Readers can also snag a pair of variant covers drawn by Travis Moore (Nihtwing) & Tamra Bonvillain (Wonder Woman) and Inhyuk Lee (Batgirls).
The first three issues are currently available, with the fourth chapter hitting stands next Tuesday — Oct. 19. Clark Kent, meanwhile, have moved over to the "Warworld Saga" event in the pages of Action Comics (Issue #1036 arrives Tuesday, Oct. 26), leaving Jon as Earth's current mainline Superman.