The trusty website, UrbanDictionary.com, has several definitions for the term lesbro:
1. A man who has more friendships with lesbians than other women or men.
2. The male equivalent of a fag hag.
3. A heterosexual man who is either one or both of the following: a brother to one or more lesbian sisters, or, friends with a disproportionate amount of homosexual women. “Wow, your brother really only hangs out with gay girls, doesn’t he! And you’re a big gay yourself, sister! What a lesbro you’ve got there!”
To us, a lesbro is a little bit of all, but at his core, a lesbro is a male friend to at least one, but possibly several, lesbians. This column shares a little bit about some famous lesbros that we love.
This week’s Lesbro: Jamie McKelvie.
Jamie McKelvieis a comics creator living in the London, England. He’s best known for his work on the critically-acclaimed Phonogram, co-created with writer Kieron Gillen. He also created Suburban Glamour, and regularly works for Marvel Comics on titles such as Invincible Iron Man, Ultimate Spider-man, Siege: Loki, X-Men and Wolverine. He is currently working on Marvel’s Generation Hope with Gillen, and is also designing the album cover for the next Art Brut release, which comes out later this year.
AfterEllen.com: Of the above three definitions of a lesbro, which do you think describes you best?
JM: The third, I’d guess, but the second description in the definition. What’s disproportionate, though? I don’t know. I guess I have a higher number of female friends in general than most guys. More often than not I get on better with women than men — most of my friends outside of comics (which is sadly still male-dominated, though that’s rapidly changing) are women.
AE: What is the best thing about your lesbian friend/s?
JM: That they are awesome people! But specifically related to sexuality, it’s also been helpful at times to get a female perspective on dating women, if you get what I mean. Oh, and a lot of the time we have similar taste in music.
AE: Do you think that having lesbian friends has anything to do with where you fall on the Kinsey scale? Care to comment on your own sexuality?
JM: I don’t think it does, no. A person’s sexuality doesn’t have any bearing on whether I want to hang out with them or not, and I don’t think it should. I’m heterosexual, but I have friends that fit into pretty much any sexuality category you’d care to name. I’m big on treating people as people, and not as a label.
AE: What stereotype about lesbians have you found to be false?
JM: Ha, pretty much all of them! That’s stereotypes for you. Let’s see, that lesbians dress a certain way, that they hate men, etc., etc. I studied sociology at university — I came to art late, only really started drawing when I was 21 — so I’m very aware of why we stereotype and categorize. When we’re not familiar with a group of people we naturally lump them together but, 9 times out of 10 you get to know someone in that group, and they don’t fit the stereotype at all. Of course, the stereotypes of artists being workshy layabouts are 100 percent true.
AE: What do you think it is specifically that draws you towards being friends with lesbians?
JM: Oh, I’m not sure. I guess pretty much all of my friends fit one “alternative” category or another — artists, musicians, writers, and so on — so maybe it’s something to do with people who don’t fit the mold. Life is so much richer when you get to hang out with people who aren’t all exactly the same as you. New experiences.
AE: How has your girlfriend (or past girlfriends if you are not in a relationship now) responded to your friendships with lesbians?
JM: Totally positively. I wouldn’t date a girl who would have an issue with it.
AE: Have any of your comics had gay characters in them?
JM: Yes — although one of them isn’t out yet! That’s part of an upcoming story I hope to tell next year in Suburban Glamour. In Phonogram, Emily Aster is bisexual.
AE: I know you through Amber Benson. How did you two meet and what was it like working with her?
JM: Oh now we’re going back onto the mists of time. Short version, I was dating a neighbor of hers about 10 years ago. The story I did with Amber (in Four Letter Worlds) was actually my first published work. It was a lot of fun. We should do it again some time!
AE: Did you know her before from her Buffy days? Are you a Buffy fan?
JM: She’d finished one season of Buffy, I think, but it hadn’t been shown in the UK by that point, so I hadn’t seen her in it. I was and still am a big fan of the show, though. It was an influence on Suburban Glamour, for sure.
Find out more about Jamie and his work at jamiemckelvie.com.