Eternals will expand the scope of the MCU in several ways. We’re going to see the prehistory of the human race, get a taste of the primordial Celestials, and get some clues as to who’s really pulling the strings behind the scenes. But one other big way it’ll push things forward is the representation of the LGBTQ+ community.
To date, the only on-screen gay MCU character was Joe Russo’s Avengers: Endgame cameo in the support group scene, but come November 5th Bryan Tyree Henry Phastos will officially become the first gay superhero in the MCU. As shown in the trailers, he’s got a husband and son and is living in quiet suburbia, though that will likely end when the Deviants show up and ruin the peace.
At the Eternals premiere last night Kevin Feige was quizzed about Phastos and teased more LGBTQ+ characters to come. Speaking to Variety, he said:
“There have been gay heroes before in the comics. It is more than past time in the movies. It’s just the start.”
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So who might be flying the rainbow flag in the future? We already know Tessa Thompson’s Valkryie was intended to be bisexual, though the scene confirming this was cut from Thor: Ragnarok. Similarly, Tom Hiddleston’s Loki was shown to be genderfluid in his Disney Plus show, though there wasn’t a focus on it.
There’s also a smattering of other characters who’ve had gay relationships in the comics but not (so far) in the MCU. Korg had a relationship with fellow gladiator Hiroim in ‘The Incredible Hulks’ comics and Dora Milaje soldiers Okoye and Ayo have also been in relationships with other women.
And then there’s Deadpool, who’s making the leap to the MCU in Deadpool 3. Ryan Reynolds’ merc with the mouth is a confirmed pansexual, with Marvel writer Gerry Duggan saying he’s “ready and willing to do anything with a pulse.” Just, uh, maybe don’t dwell on how many things have pulses.
Eternals is released on November 5th.