DC's annual Pride anthology will return with a new 100-plus page addition in June, but in 2022 that's just the start of the publisher's plans to celebrate its LGBTQIA+ characters and creators, which includes a story in which Superman gets a new cape lined with pride.
See below for more details.
DC will also publish a new young adult graphic novel, and four new comic book titles in June featuring Poison Ivy, Nubia, the Teen Justice League of Earth-11, and Tim Drake.
That's in addition to special DC Pride variant covers and other initiatives.
DC Pride 2022, the 104-page prestige format comic, publishes on June 7. The special features an introduction by transgender rights activist and Supergirl actress Nicole Maines along with a teaser of her upcoming DC project and a "personal story" - 'Finding Batman' - by actor Kevin Conroy, the iconic voice of Batman in Batman: The Animated Series, along with artists J. Bone and Aditya Bidika.
According to the publisher, DC Pride 2022's storytellers have ambitious goals - "to deliver new stories, highlight DC's fan-favorite LGBTQIA+ characters, and show fans more pride than ever before."
Featuring a main cover by Phil Jimenez and Arif Prianto, and variant covers by Joshua "Sway" Swaby and Jen Bartel, stories and creative teams in DC Pride 2022 include:
- Super Pride by Devin Grayson, Nick Robles, Triona Farrell, and Aditya Bidikar
- Confessions by Stephanie Williams, Meghan Hetrick, Marissa Louise, and Ariana Maher
- Special Delivery by Travis Moore, Enrica Eren Angiolini, and Ariana Maher
- Are You Ready for This? by Danny Lore & Ivan Cohen, Brittney Williams, Enrica Eren Angiolini, and Ariana Maher
- A World Kept Just For Me by Alyssa Wong, W. Scott Forbes, and Ariana Maher
- The Gumshoe in Green by Tini Howard, Evan Cagle, and Lucas Gattoni
- Think of Me by Ted Brandt & Ro Stein, and Frank Cvetkovic
- Public Display of the Electromagnetic Spectrum by Greg Lockard, Giulio Macaione, and Aditya Bidikar
- The Hunt by Dani Fernandez, Zoe Thorogood, Jeremy Lawson, and Aditya Bidikar
- Bat's in the Cradle by Stephanie Philips, Samantha Dodge, Marissa Louise, and Lucas Gattoni
- Up at Bat by Jadzia Axelrod, Lynne Yoshii, Tamra Bonvillain, and Ariana Maher
- Finding Batman by Kevin Conroy with art by J.Bone and Aditya Bidikar
In an update of its contents, DC also released a portion of Maine's introduction, which follows:
"Representation is something that so many take for granted. But as queer people, we have always understood not only its necessity, but its power. Seeing yourself in the media you consume is validating in a way that says, 'You are not alone.'
"Seeing yourself in comic books, though, in your favorite superheroes, is especially powerful. It tells us that not only are there other people like us out there (something that this young trans girl growing up in rural Maine desperately needed), but that they stand alongside the very best of us.
"They are the best of us.
"Superheroes set the bar and they set it high. Because if you can be a superhero, you can be anything. And superheroes are categorized as such not due to their superhuman abilities, extraterrestrial origins, or truly fabulous fashion choices. They are superheroes because they stand up for what is right against any odds.
"It is their courage that sets them apart." - Nicole Maines, DC Pride 2022
The publisher has also released preview images from the special:
Newly released is a page from the story 'Super Pride' by Devin Grayson, Nick Robles, Triona Farrell, and Aditya Bidikar in which Jon Kent's boyfriend Jay gifts him a new cape but with a special lining, a rainbow design symbolizing LGBTQIA+ pride.
Scroll through the gallery for a couple of different looks at the scene.
Whether the new lining becomes a regular feature of Superman's costume remains to be seen.
Following DC Pride 2022 on June 7, during the month, DC will launch four titles, including:
Poison Ivy, a six-issue limited series also debuting June 7 by G. Willow Wilson and Marcio Takara, with covers by Jessica Fong, Warren Louw, Nick Robles, Frank Cho, and Dan Mora.
In the series, Ivy leaves Gotham City and sets out to give the world a gift - to heal the damage humanity has done to it.
Nubia's story continues in Nubia: Queen of the Amazons, a new four-issue limited series by writer Stephanie Williams and artists Alitha Martinez and Mark Morales, with covers by Khary Randolph, Jae Lee, and Martinez.
Also launching June 7, the new series takes place immediately after May's Nubia: Coronation Special.
On June 14, Tim Drake's LGBTQIA+ journey continues in DC Pride: Tim Drake Special, a 64-page one-shot special by writer Meghan Fitzmartin and artists Belén Ortega, and Alberto Jimenez Alburquerque, with covers by Ortega and Travis Moore.
The special collects for the first time the high-profile three-part story and December follow-up from 2021's Batman: Urban Legends anthology in which Robin comes to realize for the first time that he has romantic feelings for this male friend Bernard. A new story features a Tim teaming up with his former Young Justice teammates and the Batgirls.
"Tim Drake's 2022 path starts here!" declares DC which seems to suggest there are bigger plans for him later in the year.
Finally, and also debuting on June 7, Multiversity: Teen Justice by Ivan Cohen, Danny Lore, Marco Failla, and Enrica Eren Angiolini features the return of the Future State Flash Kid Quick (Jess Chambers, DC's first non-binary character) and other young heroes from the gender-swapped Earth-11 of DC's Multiverse.
The six-issue series promises to reveal the secrets of Earth-11's newest heroes and villains and answer what role the mysterious Raven - a "brooding hero who has refused to join the team in the past" - will play.
Multiversity: Teen Justice #1 features covers by Robbi Rodriguez, Stephanie Hans, Bengal, and Failla.
In addition, the previously-announced Galaxy: The Prettiest Star from writer Jadzia Axelrod and artist Jess Taylor will publish on May 17.
The character will first be introduced in one of DC's Free Comic Book Day titles on May 7, which serves as a preview to the young adult graphic novel about Taylor, an alien princess disguised as a human boy in a story about gender identity, romance, "living as your true self," and "shining as bright as the stars."
DC will also publish a series of DC Pride 2022 variant covers. Here's a list of the titles that will feature DC Pride 2022 covers followed by a gallery of some of the cover images:
- Lynne Yoshi - Robin #15
- Mateus Manhanini - Blood Syndicate Season One #2
- Amy Reeder - Batman #124
- David Talaski - Superman: Son of Kal-El #12
- Derek Charm - Action Comics #1044
- Joe Phillips - Aquamen #5
- Kevin Wada - Nubia: Queen of the Amazons #1
- Kris Anka - Poison Ivy #1
- Nick Robles - Nightwing #93
- Nicole Goux - Wonder Woman #788
- Olivier Coipel - Harley Quinn #16
- Stephen Byrne - Multiversity: Teen Justice #1
DC also has a selection of backlist collections and new collections featuring its LGBTQIA+ characters coming in the next few months which can be found on the publisher's DC Universe Pride hub page on the DC Universe Infinite digital comic book app.
Finally, DC and its parent company WarnerMedia will be working in partnership with LGBTQIA+ organizations such as PFLAG National, The Trevor Project, Family Equality, Human Rights Campaign, Athlete Ally, Mermaids (UK), Inside Out (Canada), and more, to celebrate Pride in 2022.
"Through paneling, events, advertising, outreach, and more, these partnerships help to create a more inclusive and compassionate culture for all Super Hero fans and provide resources for readers looking to learn more about these," says the publisher.
Tim Drake and Aquaman are new additions to Newsarama's list of the most iconic LGBTQIA+ superheroes of all time.