From across the DC Universe, a celebration of LGBTQIA+ characters! Your Major Spoilers review of DC Pride #1 from DC Comics awaits!
DC PRIDE #1
Writer: James Tynion IV/Steve Orlando/Vita Ayala/Mariko Tamaki/Andrew Wheeler/Sam Johns/Danny Lore/Sina Grace/Nicole Maines
Artist: Trung Le Nguyen/Stephen Byrne/Skylar Patridge/Amy Reeder/Luciano Vecchio/Klaus Jansen/Lisa Sterle/Ro Stein & Ted Brandt/Rachael Stott
Colorist: Jose Villarubia/Marissa Louise/Rex Lokus/Dave McCaig/Enrica Eren Angiolini
Letterer: Aditya Bidikar/Josh Reed/Ariana Maher/Becca Carey/Tom Napolitano/Steve Wands
Editor: Jessica Chen/Chris Conroy/Diego Lopez, Michael McCalister/Andrea Shea/Amadeo Turturro
Publisher: DC Comics
Cover Price: $9.99
Release Date: June 8, 2021
Previously in DC Pride: DC celebrates Pride Month with nine all-new stories starring fan-favorite LGBTQIA+ characters Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy, Midnighter, Extraño, Batwoman, Aqualad, Alan Scott, Obsidian, Future State Flash, Renee Montoya, Pied Piper, and many more!
AN 80 PAGE GIANT
As someone who started reading comics in the 1980s, this anthology is impressive on a number of levels. In those days, we only had Extraño, and that was only implied most of the time. DC Pride #1 starts with a lovely Batwoman tale that explores her youth, her sexuality and the complex relationship she has with her “evil” twin sister. John Constantine and Gregorio de la Vega are up next, swapping stories about time-twisting neo-Nazi vampires, while Renee ‘The Question’ Montoya seeks out a missing girl and gets a big kiss for her heroism. Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy have a fight and a sweet conversation, while Obsidian and his father, The Green Lantern have a heart-to-heart about coming out. The newest Flash has to get ready for a date, The Pied Piper gets a sidekick, while CW TV’s Dreamer makes her comic book debut in a very cute story about a date of her own. The issue winds up with a big dose of ‘What Might Have Been’, as Aqualad faces down Eclipso at his first pride, leading to the assembly of the JLQ, thanks once again to Gregorio/Extraño.
FROM ALL OVER THE DCU
The art in DC Pride #1 is just breathtaking, starting with Nguyen’s fairy tale-influence Batwoman and the limited color palette that makes the reds of her costume and hair pop in every panel. Stephen Byrne’s Constantine/Extraño story is full of shadows and mystery, while The Question’s story is full of the grittiest parts of Gotham, ending with the wonderful visual of Renee’s mask smeared with the lipstick of the woman who just kissed her. Rachael Stott makes Dreamer’s debut look *amazing*, and I really appreciate the pin-ups throughout the issue reminding us of the characters who didn’t get their own stories. Dreamer’s actress Nicole Maines delivers a cute story for her first comic writing gig, but none of these stories is anything less than good, with a couple even hitting great along the way. The biggest surprise for me was a lack of clunky moments or false notes, as the issue pulls it all together, and even makes bits that could have been cringe-worthy (like the magical assembling of the bulk of LGBTQIA+ characters to crack Eclipse’s skull) really work effectively.
BOTTOM LINE: ONE BIG OL’ COMIC BOOK
With nearly four times the comics at only twice the price, DC Pride #1 is actually a pretty good buy per page, and the quality of the art and stories here makes it worth checking out for deep diving into some neglected corners of the DC Universe, earning 4 out of 5 stars overall. Now, if only DC editorial can find ways to use these characters before next June comes around, I’d be even happier.
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DC PRIDE #1
A whole lot of comics (with a whole lot of price tag) that ends up being well worth the price of admission.