By Brian Andersen
Originally published on Advocate.com June 20 2014 7:00 AM ET
The X-Men may be touted as one of the greatest LGBT allegories the superhero genre has ever spawned. But despite the obvious subtext, the big-screen adventures of Marvel’s most famous mutants have yet to include a clearly queer character. That’s why we’ve decided to help the creative minds behind the next installment of the film franchise. The following is a handy list of not only the best LGBT and LGBT-adjacent characters who would crank up the awesome factor of 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse film, but also the actors we think would best fit the roles.
Northstar is the first and arguably the best-known gay mutant. He came out in 1992 and got married in 2012. He’s the poster boy for gay mutants. No LGBT dream cast could possibly be complete without the inclusion of this mutant speedster with a snotty attitude.
Dream Casting: Neil Patrick Harris
The affable and adored Neil Patrick Harris is America’s gay next door. He’s the rare actor who has become even more popular and beloved after having come out. Plus he nailed playing aloof and haughty for nine seasons as Barney in How I Met Your Mother. NPH would kill it as the Canadian curmudgeon.
OK, so Dazzler isn’t queer. But being the premier superhero pop singer in the Marvel Universe means a strong argument can be made that she’s a gay icon. Dazzler originally debuted in 1980 as a roller-skating, catsuit-wearing rocker. She would be a fabulous addition to an X-movie set in the ’80s – the era in which X-Men: Apocalypse will reportedly take place. Ditch the skates and the disco influence and reintroduce Dazzler as a Madonna/Cyndi Lauper kind of rubber band bracelet–wearing, teased hair–sporting, fashion-trendsetting pop songstress, and you’ve got one fabulous addition to the team.
Dream Casting: Miley Cyrus
Before you scoff, hear us out. Miley has proven acting chops. She spent years playing Hannah Montana, so we know she’s not just a singer who wants to be an actress (sorry ’bout that, Madonna). Also, as crazy as her antics may be, the spotlight loves her. Who better to represent a larger-than-life mutant who can turn sound and music into multiple forms of light and lasers than the twerking sensation herself?Character: Bling
The daughter of hip-hopper parents, Bling is a tough, street-smart, out and proud lesbian. She’s a young, take-no-crap mutant with the ability to shoot diamond shards from her body. Cross her and she’ll cut you.
Dream Casting: Solange Knowles
By now everyone the world over has seen the Solange versus Jay-Z elevator throwdown. Need we say more? Call your agent, Solange.
Though never a member of the main X-Men team, he’s been a key part of both X-Force and X-Factor. He’s a red-haired gladiator with deadly long double blades that he uses to slash his opponents and teleport. Since Blink from Days of Future Past appears in the X-Men movie future, in the 1980s the merry mutants can use a fierce fighter who can also teleport. (Added bonus: He’s in a loving relationship with fellow mutant Rictor.)
Dream Casting: Eddie Redmayne
The British-born Eddie Redmayne isn’t quite a household name in the U.S., but his fiery mane automatically puts him in the running for this character. Of course, he’s a talented thespian as well. He sang and emoted on-screen in 2012’s Les Misérables along with Wolverine and Catwoman (a.k.a. Hugh Jackman and Anne Hathaway), no easy feat. Redmayne would bring depth and humanity to our mutant from the Mojoverse.
The bisexual Latino Rictor is a vibrating powerhouse. He can shake a building to its foundation all the while rocking a shirtless outfit. (Some hunky eye candy is always a welcome treat.) Fun fact: he made his comics debut in 1987 – making him a perfect fit for the timeframe in which X-Men: Apocalypse will be set. Also, Rictor and Shatterstar are one of Marvel’s main same-sex mutant couples. We can’t have one without the other.
Dream Casting: Tyler Posey
Posey is well known as the leader of the wolf pack in MTV’s homoerotic Teen Wolf series. He has the dreamy physique – and the dreamboat status – to bring Rictor to life. (And, frankly, we know many of you would love to see Posey getting hot and heavy with Redmayne on the big screen.)
The Vietnamese-born Karma, with the ability to possess another person’s mind, first appeared in Marvel Comics in 1980 and has been kicking around the X-World ever since. She’s an out lesbian with a fierce inner strength. She once gained 300 pounds while she was possessed by the Shadow King and not only defeated him but lost all the weight on her own. That takes determination. Also, it would be great to have another telepathic character on the screen alongside Jean Grey and Professor X.
Dream Casting: Olivia Munn
Munn has the beauty and the geek cred. She hosted the geektastic Attack of the Show! and has cosplayed as both Wonder Woman and Slave Leia. She’s got the sass and the strength to pull off Karma. Also she’s been branching out into the acting world for a while now, starring in movies like Magic Mike and serious TV shows such as HBO’s The Newsroom.
The green-hued, lizard-like mutant might not be in the forefront of any X-Team, but he’s still one of the few queer teenagers currently kicking around the mutant world. He’s determined to be a hero and works hard to be the best he can be while never losing his playfulness and youthful vigor. Imagine him as a sidekick to Wolverine. They would be a perfect yin-and-yang buddy cop–type duo for the X-Men.
Dream Casting: Dylan O’Brien
As Stiles, O’Brien is the cute, funny sidekick and best friend of Scott McCall (Tyler Posey) in MTV’s Teen Wolf. He would nail the goofy side of Anole. O’Brien’s showed his acting range as he played an evil version of himself wrecking havoc on his friends in last Teen Wolf’s third season, making it clear he’s got the got the chops. O’Brien can bring both the drama and the clever comedic one-liners.
Mystique’s longtime lover, Destiny is an older mutant with the ability to see the future. She also helped raise one of the most popular X-Men, Rogue. That family dynamic is a soap opera–worthy story just waiting to be told.
Dream Casting: Helen Mirren
Helen Mirren is a Dame and an Academy Award winner. She starred in the comic book-turned-movie franchise entries Red and Red 2, where she kicked ass as a gun-toting retired spy. Mirren would own this role while adding a touch of class to the movie.
Characters: Hulkling and Wiccan
Yes, we know, Hulkling and Wiccan aren’t X-Men, and only Wiccan is a mutant, as he is the son of the Scarlet Witch. But since we’re dream-casting the X-Men we wanted to include these teenage boyfriends because, though still young, these two lovebirds are one of the more stable couples in the Marvel Universe. Hulkling is an alien hybrid, and the X-Men have always been welcoming to aliens from outer space, so it isn’t a stretch to have him hanging with the mutant crowd.
Dream Casting: Zac Efron and Dave Franco
Efron and Franco are still young enough to pull off being teenagers while also bringing those teen idol good looks. They’ve both easily ping-ponged back and forth between comedy and drama. Also, they pulled off a believable bromance/borderline love story in the recent comedy hit Neighbors. Give Efron the role of Hulkling and Franco the role of Wiccan and gay moviegoers can finally stop dreaming of a make-out session between these two.