Dead End: Paranormal Park star Zach Barack has called on Marvel to include better trans representation in their films and TV shows.
Over the last few years, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has slowly introduced LGBTQ+ characters within its major releases after receiving pushback from queer fans.
In 2021, the MCU welcomed its first major LGBTQ+ character as they confirmed Tom Hiddleston’s beloved Asgardian trickster, Loki, identifies as bisexual.
Marvel Studios later introduced their first-ever gay superhero in Eternals with Brian Tyree Henry’s Phastos, who also shared a passionate kiss with his husband Jack (Haaz Sleiman) – another first for the franchise.
While LGBTQ+ representation has slowly increased in the longstanding franchise, Barack has said that the studio’s recent inclusion can be better.
In a recent interview with Digital Spy, the openly trans actor said that the Marvel Studio’s latest efforts are “not good enough” – specifically regarding trans representation.
“It’s… I mean, on some fundamental level, even seeing Batgirl shelved, which is not Marvel, it all boils down to what we value – which is not femininity,” he said.
“That’s where hating trans people, in a lot of ways, comes from – that we don’t want people to act less than what we see, which is often masculinity. This is why it’s a lot less dangerous to be a trans guy than it is to be a trans girl or a trans feminine person.”
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The Spider-Man: Far From Home star went on to say that Marvel should be braver when it comes to introducing trans characters.
“But… more directly, yeah – just make the character trans, and face the consequences. Be brave. Do something in the world so that when you die, you’re like, ‘I’m glad I tried that and don’t regret not doing it,'” he said.
“But at some point, I don’t know what to say to a person who’s more focused on ticket sales. I don’t know how to say it. I don’t want to argue.
“I don’t know how to tell someone to care, but they should. It’s the right thing to do. And it matters. It matters more than anything… you know, we can’t afford to not be on the same team at this point.”
Barack’s comments come a year after Victoria Alonso – Marvel’s Executive Vice President of Film Production – said that more LGBTQ+ stories were headed to the MCU.
“It takes time, we have so many stories that we can tell,” she told Variety at the Black Widow fan premiere.
“We will empower those that are. We’re not changing anything. We’re just showing the world who these people are, who these characters are… There’s a lot that we have coming up that I think will be representative of the world of today.”