Hollywood’s strides towards inclusivity and diversity in its movies keeps improving and getting better by the day and the next media powerhouse jumping on the bandwagon is Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Speaking with io9, the head of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige confirmed Valkyrie, who is played by actress Tessa Thompson will be the franchise’s first LGBTQ superhero in the next instalment of “Thor: Love and Thunder”.
“The answer is yes,” Feige said about Valkyrie. “How that impacts the story remains to be seen with that level of representation you’ll see across our films, not in just Thor 4.”
Thompson, who is openly bisexual also gave a hint about her character during Marvel’s panel at the San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday.
“As new king, she needs to find her queen,” she said. “That will be her first order of business. She has some ideas. Keep you posted.”
Making her debut in “Thor: Ragnarok”, the news of Valkyrie being the first LGBTQ superhero did not really come as a surprise particularly to fans as she is already portrayed as bisexual in the comic book though her sexuality wasn’t highlighted in Ragnarok – something Thompson confirmed and highlighted in a Tweet after the movie’s release in 2017.
“YES! Val is Bi in the comics & I was faithful to that in her depiction,” she shared. “But her sexuality isn’t explicitly addressed in Thor: Ragnarok.”
A very perfect fit for the role, Thompson, who affirmed she’s attracted to both men and women in an interview with Porter magazine in 2018 touched on her sexuality and her close relationship with singer, songwriter, model, actress and self-acclaimed pansexual Janell Monáe.
“It’s tricky, because Janelle and I are just really private people and we’re both trying to navigate how you reconcile wanting to have that privacy and space, and also wanting to use your platform and influence,” she said.
“I can take things for granted because of my family – it’s so free and you can be anything that you want to be. I’m attracted to men and also to women. If I bring a woman home, [or] a man, we don’t even have to have the discussion.”
Thompson, who made a cameo appearance in Monáe’s PYNK video also spoke about why it’s so important for people to be open and free about their sexuality without fear of being discriminated.
“That was something I was conscientious of in terms of this declaration around Janelle and myself. I want everyone else to have that freedom and support that I have from my loved ones,” she said.
“But so many people don’t. So, do I have a responsibility to talk about that? Do I have a responsibility to say in a public space that this is my person?”
Neither denying nor confirming her relationship with Monáe, she, however, admitted they “love each other deeply.”
“We’re so close, we vibrate on the same frequency. If people want to speculate about what we are, that’s okay. It doesn’t bother me.”