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Marvel teases powerful new LGBT+ mutant superhero just in time for Pride month

Patrick Kelleher May 11, 2021
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Somnus Marvel Comics

Somnus on the variant cover for Marvel's Voices: Pride #1. (Marvel Comics)

Marvel Comics is set to introduce Somnus, a queer mutant superhero, in a hotly-anticipated Pride-themed comic released in June.

Somnus will make his first appearance in Marvel’s Voices: Pride #1, where his incredible backstory will be unveiled by veteran comic book writer Steve Orlando. The artwork is created by Claudia Aguirre in her Marvel Comics debut, while Luciano Vecchio takes responsibility for costume design.

The queer superhero is described as “a mutant who had an extraordinary impact on an X-Man long ago”.

While Somnus’ powers mean he can control other people’s dreams, he “was never able to follow his own,” according to the official Marvel Comics description.

Marvel’s Voices: Pride #1 will follow Somnus as he is given a second chance at life in the mutant nation of Krakoa, where he must “step up in a big way and become the hero he was always destined to be”.

“Somnus, Carl Valentino, is inspired not only by my own family history, but by my experiences with past generations of LGBTQ+ folks from across the country, people I wouldn’t have met without comics,” Orlando said in a statement ahead of the comic’s release.

“While there is still plenty of work to do, we’ve also come a long way as a community. Somnus is a chance to explore how my own late queer relatives may have felt, living in more prejudiced times. He’s also a chance to celebrate past generations as a whole and acknowledge the strides we’ve made that they may not have lived to see.”

Marvel Comics’ queer superhero Somnus is the ‘man of your dreams’

Orlando continued: “And with the Krakoa era being one of relative utopia for mutant kind, Somnus will bring a fresh perspective, and respectful gut check, to the young mutants of the present who may not know just how hard some had to fight for all mutants have achieved. Within the story and without, Somnus will be a new, complex character carrying a message of respect, power, and vision.”

Vecchio said the comic was a “dream assignment” for him.

“On top of doing the cover, a frame variant, and a story that I got to write myself, I also got to design a new queer character introduced in a story written by Steve Orlando,” Vecchio said.

“I’m so happy to finally collaborate officially with Steve and I fell in love with Somnus’ concept and backstory right away. I got some input from him and editor Sarah Brunstad but also a lot of liberty to propose ideas.

“This time the design process itself felt almost like channelling. I wanted him to have an air of ‘man of your dreams,’ very charming and human but unreachable at the same time.”

Related topics: LGBT superheroes, marvel, X-Men

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