The DC Comics relaunch of the Batgirl
series includes Alysia Yeoh, the publisher's first transgender
character in a mainstream series.
Alysia, who is also bisexual, comes out
transgender to her roommate Barbara Gordon, Batgirl, in the
newly-released Batgirl #19.
Writer Gail Simone told Wired.com
that Alysia will be “a character, not a public service announcement
… being trans is just part of her story. If someone loved her
before, and doesn't love her after, well – that's a shame, but we
can't let that kind of thinking keep comics in the 1950s forever.”
“It's the issue for superhero
comics,” she said, referring to diversity. “Look, we have a
problem most media don't have, which is that almost all the tentpoles
we build our industry upon were created over a half century ago …
at a time where the characters were almost without exception white,
cis-gendered, straight, on and on. It's fine – it's great that
people love those characters. But if we only build around them, then
we look like an episode of The Andy Griffith Show for all
Simone added that she's working on
another transgender character in a different comic that she's writing
but did not provide any specific details.
“It's time for a trans hero in a
mainstream comic,” she said.
Batgirl #19 went on sale