A new gay character has been announced by Marvel Comics in its Uncanny X-Men series, but the comics giant downplayed the coming out as just a “small facet” of his character.

Benjamin Deeds, one of the most recent mutants to be discovered in the series, came out in the fourteenth instalment of Uncanny X Men. He is able to shape-shift, altering his appearance to mimic anyone he is close to.

Joe Taraborrelli, a Senior Communications Manager at Marvel, told the Huffington Post that Deeds’ sexuality was not a big deal. He said: “Continuing with Marvel’s rich tradition of character development and storytelling, this shape-shifting mutant can alter his appearance to mimic anyone he is in close proximity with.”

“The fact that Ben has come out as homosexual is just a small facet of who he is and what he is going to bring to Cyclops’ select team of X-Men,” he continued.

Not the first time an X-Men Universe character has come out. Earlier this year, Marvel Comics character Wolverine came out as gay, as he and demigod Hercules announced their love for one another in an issue of the comic.

Such comics have been commended, as more and more publishers depict LGBT characters, many of whom have serious or long term relationships.

DC Comics’ Batwoman also proposed to her girlfriend earlier this yearBatwoman was reintroduced as a lesbian by DC Comics in 2006, in a new title which aimed to reflect modern society more accurate than previous comics.

Marvel‘s Northstar, the first openly gay hero, tied the knot with his boyfriend Kyle Jinadu in an issue of ‘Astonishing X-Men’, last year, and recently the creators of Judge Dredd suggested that he could be gay.

Last year, Dark Horse Comics’ Buffy the Vampire Slayer, introduced a new, gay, male, vampire slayer named Billy, and spoke about the issues around creating such a character.