Comics Industry Baby
A Lil Nas X comic book detailing the out and proud musical artist’s life story is now available. Published as part of TidalWaves Comics’ “Fame” biological comic book series, “Fame: Lil Nas X” chronicles the groundbreaking hip-hop star’s life from his childhood in Atlanta to sitting on top of the charts with hit singles including “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” “Old Town Road,” and “Industry Baby.”
“These readers are simply looking for something other than superheroes or horror,” TidalWave’s Darren G. Davis told Variety. Lil Nas X may not have superpowers, but his rise to hip-hop prominence and artful statements on queerness have made him feel like a hero to countless fans.
“Fame: Lil Nas X” is available for purchase through Amazon, Comixology and other digital comic book platforms.
Gay Man Burns Bible In Protest
A gay Tennessee man drew online praise last week after he and his husband crashed a church-organized book burning and tricked onlookers into cheering as he burned a Bible.
The feat belongs to Chris Hardin and his husband, who entered the crowd of onlookers as anti-LGBTQ pastor Greg Locke led the crowd in burning copies of “Harry Potter,” “Twlight” and other works Locke believed held a demonic influence. In a YouTube video from the event, Hardin’s husband is shown throwing a book into the flames while yelling “Hail, Satan.” The crowd cheered as Hardin’s husband yelled “I burned a Bible” multiple times until they realized what occurred.
Multiple men tried to physically remove the couple after the crowd wisened up, but they left the crowd with a passionate kiss as a punctuation mark before leaving and joining a counter-protest organized by atheists across the street.
Comments on the video celebrated the couple’s actions. “You’re an absolute American hero, my dude,” one commenter wrote. “Thank you for being there. These burners are completely disgusting,” another wrote.
Iceman’s Ideallic Queer Prom
Bobby Drake, better known as the original X-Men member Iceman, remains a popular LGBTQ figure in the Marvel Comics canon since writer Brian Michael Bendis confirmed the character’s sexual orientation in 2015. But his identity has never been celebrated so beautifully as in the recently released “Marauders #1,” where Drake and his boyfriend, Christian Frost, get the queer prom they never had.
In the book, the two share a cathartic dance thanks to Somnus, a new hero introduced in last year’s “Marvel Voices: Pride #1.” Somnus uses his ability to control dreams to construct the moment for Drake and Frost, giving Drake a chance to live out and proud during his adolescence, something not afforded to him during his actual teen years.
The moment also provided Frost with an opportunity to feel empowered in the presence of his virulently homophobic father, Winston Frost. The elder Frost destroyed Christian’s life after finding out he was gay, including deporting his boyfriend and forcing him to enter conversion therapy. Somnus’ construction turns the dance floor into images of Winston’s face, letting Christian happily step on his father’s visage while forcing him to see his son being gay and happy.
Furries To The Rescue
Furries from across the country are flooding a Mississippi library system with thousands of dollars in donations after a local mayor said he would deny the library system $110,000 in funding over the library’s decision to stock LGBTQ books.
According to the Jackson Clarion-Ledger, Ridgeland, MS mayor Gene McGee made the threat after claiming he received complaints about books discussing LGBTQ identities and topics in September 2021, deeming them sexually explicit material. McGee’s characterization of the titles, which includes “What Are Your Words?” and essay collection “The Queer Bible,” falls in line with a recent trend seen in school districts nationwide as the availability of LGBTQ-themed books in school libraries continues to be challenged.
McGee said he would withhold funding from the Marion County Library System until the books were removed. But a tweet remarking on the situation seen by Florida-based furry Soatok sent events in a completely new direction. After making an initial donation of $500 to a fundraiser launched by library nonprofit PAC EveryLibrary, Soatok spread the word about what was happening. The furry community responded in quick step.
“I have friends in Mississippi and I know that this act of bigotry doesn’t speak for all Mississippi residents,” he told the Clarion-Ledger. “So instead of dismissing the entire state because of the actions of one bad politician, I decided to explore the possibility of donating to offset the withheld amount.”
Within 24 hours, the fundraiser exceeded its $2,500 goal, collecting more than $9,000. As of Feb. 8, the campaign has raised $100,685 from more than 2,280 backers with six days remaining before the campaign closes.
Soatok continues to update his followers on the campaign through his Twitter account, including when McGee’s official campaign account went private during the fundraiser and ultimately blocked him. “The amount of support we’ve directed has eclipsed their belief of what was even possible,” Soatok tweeted. “It’s not over yet, but damn if we haven’t gone a long way already.”
“We’re amazed and humbled by all these people who have never been to Ridgeland, Mississippi, or never even heard of Ridgeland, Mississippi, that are supporting this library,” said Teresa Gerald, president of Friends of the Ridgeland Library. “This isn’t just a furry sentiment, or an LGBTQ+ sentiment, but an American sentiment,” Soatok added.
Lil Nas X Comic: Previously on Towleroad
Images courtesy of TidalWave Comics/Marvel