CGC Comics Registry Featured Set: First Appearance of LGBT Characters

Posted on 6/3/2024

We are proud to highlight this month’s featured CGC Comics Registry set from user daspion.

This month we welcome and celebrate the growing LGBT+ comics community with CGC Comics Registry user daspion's First Appearance of LGBT Characters set.

Click images to enlarge.

In the early days of comic books, LGBT+ themes and characters were often hidden or implied due to societal norms and censorship laws, like the Comics Code Authority established in 1954, which prohibited explicit references to homosexuality. Early representations were rare and often negative, reinforcing stereotypes rather than offering genuine visibility. However, as societal attitudes shifted over the decades, so did the portrayal of LGBT+ characters in comics, gradually moving toward more open and positive representations.

The inclusion of LGBT+ characters in comic books has significantly expanded since the 1980s and 1990s, reflecting broader cultural changes and the push for diversity and representation. Key milestones include Metropolis’ top cop Maggie Sawyer coming out in Superman #15 (1988) as the first openly gay DC character, and the hero Northstar as Marvel's first openly gay superhero in Alpha Flight #106 (1992). Since then, comic books have featured an increasing number of complex, central LGBT+ characters like Harley Quinn, Poison Ivy, Batwoman, John Constantine and Superman Jon Kent (the son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane) at DC Comics, as well as Iceman, Deadpool, Mystique and Kitty Pride at Marvel Comics.

Some of the comics in daspion's collection of LGBT first appearances include:

  • Ms. Marvel #18 graded CGC 9.0 — the first full appearance of Mystique
  • X-Men #120 graded CGC 8.5 — the first appearance of Northstar
  • Saga of the Swamp Thing #27 graded CGC 9.0 — the first appearance of John Constantine
  • Amazing Spider-Man #194 graded CGC 7.5 — the first appearance of Black Cat
  • Iron Man #55 graded CGC 3.5 — the first appearance of Starfox
  • All-New X-Men #3 graded CGC 9.6 — the first appearance of Morph

These characters and narratives provide visibility and validation for LGBT+ readers, contributing to a richer, more inclusive comic book universe.

About the CGC Comics Registry

The CGC Comics Registry is a place where comic book collectors come together to share their collections and knowledge with one another. It's a valuable resource for new collectors and experienced fans alike, with a wide range of collections on display. To participate, all you need is a free CGC Collectors account. The resource is an online community developed to increase the choices, convenience and education available to collectors.

The CGC Comics Registry has grown to over 100,000 registered sets in the last year! There are now more than 625,000 books registered and it is thrilling to see the steady, continued growth of the CGC Comics Registry. To learn more about how to navigate the CGC Comics Registry, click here.

About CGC

Since revolutionizing comic book grading in 2000, CGC has grown to include certification services for many other types of pop culture collectibles. These divisions include CGC Cards, CGC Video Games and CGC Home Video. CGC Cards provides expert card grading for TCGs, sports cards and non-sports cards. CGC Video Games is dedicated to video game grading for the most popular consoles, including Nintendo, Sega, Atari, PlayStation and more. The newest division of CGC, CGC Home Video, provides expert VHS grading in addition to other types of home media, including Betamax, DVD and Blu-ray.

Stay Informed

Want news like this delivered to your inbox once a month? Subscribe to the free CGC eNewsletter today!


You've been subscribed to the CGC eNewsletter.

Unable to subscribe to our eNewsletter. Please try again later.

Articles List