Avengers: Endgame is being called out for doing "the bare minimum" with first gay character
29 April 2019, 15:12 | Updated: 8 August 2019, 12:43
People are dragging Avengers: Endgame for its lack of LGBTQ representation.
Avengers: Endgame has broken every record going since its release. The film, which came out on Friday (April 26), has already taken $1.2 billion dollars at the box office globally, making it the biggest worldwide debut of all time.
The film was also notable for introducing Marvel's first openly gay character. As many noted, the inclusion was long overdue after some 20+ movies. But some fans are disappointed because the character's role was so small.
***Minor spoilers ahead ***
As you know, Avengers: Infinity War ended with Thanos snapping his finger and decimating half the population of the known universe and inspired a million memes in the process.
In Avengers: Endgame, a minor character who attends a support group is grappling with the aftermath of Thanos' snap. He discusses going on a recent date with another man in which they both got emotional over their snapped loved ones. The character is played by Joe Russo, one half of the film's Russo Brothers directing duo.
Speaking to Deadline, Joe Russo expanded on the significance of the character. “Representation is really important. It was important to us as we did four of these films, we wanted a gay character somewhere in them. We felt it was important that one of us play him, to ensure the integrity and show it is so important to the filmmakers that one of us is representing that."
While this is the first gay character in the films, there have been a number of LGBTQ characters on the small screen, including Jeri Hogarth on Jessica Jones and Joey Gutierrez on Agents of SHIELD. Tessa Thompson also revealed that a scene was cut from Thor: Ragnarok that referenced Valkyrie's bisexuality.
While the inclusion of the character is a positive step forward, many are calling out the film's creators for doing the bare minimum because they didn't give the character a name and only gave him a few lines.
While there was obviously a lot of story to fit into one film (poor Katherine Langford's character didn't even appear in the film), some felt it was a wasted opportunity to introduce a new gay superhero into the franchise.
"After 22 films we thought an openly gay, completely anonymous character should have three full lines of dialogue."— Scott Weinberg (@scottEweinberg) April 27, 2019
Us: Oh my gosh!! A real gay Avenger/side character who is a real character with a story and background, not replacable extra 48— everything I ship turns to dust so beware the bear (@lunahandycap) April 28, 2019
endgame finishes,, the credits start to roll,, the avengers are dead,, you never saw who the gay character was supposed to be,, suddenly the russo brothers pop up and point at you,, turns out it was the audience who was gay this whole time— andy ⎊ endgame x2 (@infinitypilots) April 23, 2019
*VERY SLIGHT AVENGERS ENDGAME SPOILER*— Dan the Dancer ✨ (@DVruno) April 27, 2019
I'm still laughing that the first openly gay person in MCU is a stranger in a grieving session
this is such bullshit. give us actual rep, stop doing less than the bare minimum then claiming to be an ally. https://t.co/iN7ZNHko1C— funky lil lesbian™ (@olivia_seibel) April 28, 2019
Others have been more supportive.
Not a spoiler, but I think the most significant thing about Avengers Endgame was the fact that it's the first MCU film to acknowledge the existence of gay people— Kristian Johns (@guy_interruptd) April 28, 2019
Also #Avengers related: did anyone catch the gay man in the beginning talking about his experiences and going on dates during the focus group?— tylerMcSilva(); (@tymcsilva) April 28, 2019
RE 👏 PRE 👏 SEN 👏 TA 👏 TION 👏 MAT 👏 TERS
Omg there’s a gay character in @Avengers - he’s in one scene and doesn’t have a name but still.. progress I guess? Spoiler: it’s not Thanos— Andreas Samuelson (@andy_samuelson) April 23, 2019
As reported by Variety, Marvel producer Victoria Alonso has also called for a gay superhero. “I’m so passionate about this, I’ve got to tell you. Our entire success is based on people that are incredibly different. Why wouldn’t we? Why would we only want to be recognized by only one type of person? Our audience is global, is diverse, is inclusive. If we don’t do it that way for them, we will fail.”
There are rumours that the studio is looking for a queer lead character for upcoming production The Eternals, so lets hope that comes through for the LGBTQ representation that is so badly needed.