Archie Comics announced last week the introduction of a new openly gay character, Kevin, in the September issue of "Veronica". The official press release says,
"The introduction of Kevin is just about keeping the world of Archie Comics current and inclusive. Archie's hometown of Riverdale has always been a safe world for everyone. It just makes sense to have an openly gay character in Archie comic books," stated Archie Comics Co- CEO, Jon Goldwater.
VERONICA #202 features the full-issue story, "Isn't it Bromantic?" that introduces Kevin, Archie Comics' first openly gay character. Kevin Keller is the new hunk in town and Veronica just has to have him. After Kevin defeats Jughead in a burger eating contest at Pop's Chocklit Shoppe, she desperately latches onto him. Mayhem and hilarity ensue as Kevin desperately attempts to let Veronica down easy and her flirtations only become increasingly persistent.
This is a big step forward in the world of comics. Although there have been gay super hero characters introduced in recent years, like DC Comics' current incarnation of Catwoman and Marvel Comics' Colossus, this is the first time we've seen a gay character in a normal high school setting.
The website goes on the say, "the introduction of Kevin as an openly gay character is part of the commitment to keep Archie properties reflective of the current world of teens and teen media."
Showing Kevin as just another character goes a long way in helping LGBT kids feel less isolated. Let's hope that the writers develop the character in such a way that the fact that he's gay is not the most interesting thing about him.
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