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DC Comics’ 2021 summer special is a wall-to-wall Pride celebration

The oversize anthology is made by queer creators about queer characters

Batwoman stands, flanked by Renee Montoya/The Question, Green Lantern/Alan Scott, Dreamer, and Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy on the cover of DC Pride (2021). Image: Jim Lee/DC Comics
Susana Polo is an entertainment editor at Polygon, specializing in pop culture and genre fare, with a primary expertise in comic books. Previously, she founded The Mary Sue.

Every summer, DC Comics puts out an 80-page anthology celebrating the joys of the season. But this summer, that special issue will have a narrower focus: DC Pride will feature different stories about queer DC superheroes and villains from a who’s-who lineup of queer comics creators.

The issue will open with a foreword from writer Marc Andreyko, editor of the Love is Love tribute anthology, followed by nine different features, and several full-page art pinups from the likes of Kris Anka, Sophie Campbell, Mildred Louis, Travis Moore, Nick Robles, and Kevin Wada — as well as “full-page profiles of DCTV’s LGBTQIA+ characters and the actors who play them,” according to a news release from DC. In something of a multimedia crossover, Nicole Maines, the trans actress who plays the trans superheroine Dreamer on the CW’s Supergirl TV series, will introduce the character to the DC Universe with Supergirl artist Rachel Stott in one of the issue’s nine stories.

Batwoman is flanked by other queer and trans superheroes in the DC Universe on the cover of DC Pride, DC Comics (2021). Image: Jim Lee/DC Comics

Other creator/character pairings in the anthology include James Tynion IV (Wynd, Batman) and Trung Le Nguyen (The Magic Fish) on Batwoman; Mariko Tamaki (Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me, Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass) and Amy Reeder (Amethyst) on a Poison Ivy/Harley Quinn story; Steve Orlando (Midnighter & Apollo, Wonder Woman) returning to Midnighter with Stephen Byrne (Mera: Tidebreaker); Danny Lore (Black Panther) and Lisa Sterle (Submerged) teaming up for a story about the Flash of Earth-11 (the nonbinary character Jess Chambers); Sam Johns (Punchline) and Klaus Janson (The Dark Knight Returns) taking on a story about the recently out-of-the-closet Green Lantern Alan Scott and his very-long-out-of-the-closet son Obsidian; Andrew Wheeler (The Old Guard) and Luciano Vecchio (King In Black: Wiccan And Hulking #1) penning a story about Aqualad; Vita Ayala (Children of the Atom) and Skylar Patridge tackling a Renee Montoya story; and Sina Grace (Iceman), Ro Stein, and Ted Brandt (Crowded) bringing a story about the supervillain Pied Piper to readers.

DC was quick to establish in its news release that DC Pride isn’t the only queer superhero content the company is readying for this summer. Mariko Tamaki will write an eight-issue miniseries starring Crush, a breakout character from the company’s most recent Teen Titans series and the long-lost daughter of notorious space bounty hunter and general nuisance Lobo.

“After rage-quitting the Teen Titans and blowing up her relationship with her girlfriend Katie,” said DC, “Crush decides it’s time to finally confront her father in space jail and get her baggage sorted before she wrecks everything. Like father, like daughter?”

Crush & Lobo #1 will hit shelves on June 1. Also coming in June from DC are the queer romance YA graphic novel Poison Ivy: Thorns by Kody Keplinger (The DUFF) and Sara Kipin, and Mariko Tamaki and Yoshi Yoshitani’s YA graphic novel, I Am Not Starfire, about Starfire’s resentful goth daughter.

Crush, with her mowhawk and leather jacket, poses on the front of Lobo’s space motorcycle, as they zip through the cosmos. Both have the white skin and Kiss-front man type black eye markings of the Tsarnian people, on the cover of Crush & Lobo #1, DC Comics (2021).
The cover of Crush & Lobo #1.
Image: Kris Anka/DC Comics