9 Lesbian and Bi Women in Comic Books You Should Know About

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While movies and TV often lag behind, comic books lead the way when it comes to representing lesbian and bi women well. DC, Marvel and indie comic publishers continue to generate stories that empower us, make us feel visible, and often avoid negative stereotypes in the process. Down below are nine lesbian and bi women in comics who you should definitely keep an eye on.

Batwoman

Currently DC’s highest profile gay hero, Kate Kane is leading the way when it comes to positive representation in comics. At twelve years old, Kate and her family were taken hostage, which left her mother dead and her twin sister lost. Years later, that compelled Kate to follow her father’s footsteps by joining the military academy. But after refusing to lie about an alleged relationship with a woman, she was discharged after admitting she’s a lesbian. From that moment, Kate’s life was in complete disarray until she encountered Batman, who helped her off the ground after nearly being attacked by muggers. The Dark Knight inspired her to become a vigilante and don the cape and cowl, serving the world in her own way as Batwoman. Kate reminds us that no matter what struggles we’ve faced, there is always room to become the strongest version of ourselves.

Wonder Woman

Due to the sapphic undertones of her earliest comics, Wonder Woman has been an icon to lesbian and bi women for decades. As Diana grew up on an island of only women, the chance of her being attracted to them is as obvious as it gets. Last year, DC gave fans the clearest indication of her bisexuality by introducing a brief female love interest named Kasia. Wonder Woman’s sexuality is not acknowledged in comics as much as it should be, but it’s important that such an emblematic and inspirational character is a member of our community.

Karolina Dean

 

One of Marvel’s few lesbian characters, Karolina has been idolized by her fans since her 2003 debut in the Runaways comic. Her solar-infused, alien powers are kept hidden by a bracelet, but once removed, her skin glows into an illuminating, rainbow-like light. Karolina will make her first live-action appearance in Hulu’s upcoming Runaways show, which will thankfully keep her sexuality intact.

Maggie Sawyer

You’re probably familiar with Maggie as being one half of Sanvers on The CW’s Supergirl, but the character has appeared in comics since 1987. Maggie’s earliest stories explored how her sexuality affected her family life and her job as a police officer in Metropolis. Even though she faced setbacks, she was never ashamed of being gay. In the 90s, Maggie headlined her own four-part comic, Maggie Sawyer, Special Crimes Unit, which was the first comic by a major publisher with an out lesbian lead.

Julie Power

Marvel’s Julie Power, also known as Lightspeed, is a member of a superhero sibling team called the Power Pack. While coming out as bisexual to a friend in Avengers Academy, she reinforced that bisexuals are not confused, which is an unfortunately common assumption in the real world. For her to discuss and shatter bi stereotypes is extremely powerful to do in this medium. At the end of the same comic, Julie and Karolina Dean became a couple and are still going strong to this day.

Renee Montoya

Though Renee was initially created for Batman: The Animated Series in 1992, DC expanded her appearance in comics that same year. One of her most impactful stories is found in 2003’s Gotham Central, where she was outed as a lesbian to her coworkers. This was a distressing time for Renee, but she eventually learned to become more courageous and resilient than she ever was. Years later, Renee took up the mantle of a superhero named The Question. Whether she’s operating as a vigilante or a detective in Gotham City, Renee continues to have a lasting impact on her fans.

Vampirella

Vampirella is a legendary character in horror comics, but recently, the bisexual heroine ditched her famous, skimpy suit and currently resides in a dystopian future. In this world, she meets Vicki Vincent, who eventually becomes her girlfriend. Their endearing relationship was just recently made official, and I’m excited for what’s in store for them in Dynamite Entertainment’s incredibly sapphic adventure.

Traci Thirteen

Traci is a sorceress who can use her mystical powers to tap into cities, cast spells, and teleport. Revealed in the current Superwoman comic, Traci happens to be gay, and is in a relationship with Natasha Irons. Traci might not be the most well-known character in the DC world, but we’re going to see a lot more of her in the future. Not only will the upcoming season of animated series Young Justice include her, but Traci will also receive her own live-action show on The CW, entitled Project 13. While the network has become known for their mistreatment of lesbian and bi women, let’s hope they use Project 13 as a long overdue opportunity to right the wrongs.

Maxima

Maxima had an infatuation with Superman when she first entered the DC Universe in 1989, but in 2014, she was reintroduced as an openly lesbian character who eventually becomes attracted to Supergirl. As Maxima’s home world of Almerac merely expects women to be straight and have children, she decided to leave her planet because of her homosexuality. Her story is an example of how heteronormativity can be damaging to society, but just being gay and proud is an easy way to overcome it.

Which lesbian and bi women in comic books have inspired you? Let us know!

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