DC and IDW Publishing’s “Love is Love” welcomes the best and brightest comics creators today to honor the victims of the Pulse shooting in Orlando in June.
Marc Andreyko (“Batwoman”) has gathered such talents as Paul Dini, Gail Simone, Phil Jimenez and Brian Michael Bendis as well as a few folks you don’t typically associate with comics: Patton Oswalt, Taran Killam, Morgan Spurlock and Matt Bomer.
Most of the stories in this 144-page trade paperback run just one page.
What kind of impact can one page deliver?
Plenty, it turns out.
Several may just bring tears to your eyes.
A Floridian is relieved and then feels guilt when he realizes he didn’t know any of the 49 victims. An elderly gay couple put the shootings in terrible, tragic perspective. A boy cries out for his father, killed in the nightclub. A beloved dog, rescued from an animal shelter, faces an uncertain future. A child learns hate can be a family value.
One story made me laugh out loud:
Poison Ivy overhears a waiter and a customer making cute and erupts in a floral frenzy.
“Flirt louder! There’s not enough time! … We have to show who we are and not be afraid. We only grow in the sun.”
The stories can be intensely personal: Chuck Kim and Phil Jimenez reminisce about their 20s and mourn those whose lives were cut short during a night of dancing.
In addition to DC mainstays Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman and Supergirl, Harry Potter, the Spirit, Archie Comic’s Kevin Keller and Kyle from “Kyle’s Bed & Breakfast” pop up in vignettes.
DC’s Extrano, mainstream comics’ first gay hero (sorry, Northstar!), apologizes, in essence, for being such a raging stereotype. “Ah, the ’80s,” he says.
There’s something so exhilarating about seeing heroes loved as a child appear in defense of the LGBT community. The image of Superman holding a rainbow flag might bring on a ripple of goose bumps.
Hey, if you don’t like a story, turn the page.
The proceeds from “Love is Love” benefit the survivors and the families of those who died at Pulse. For $10, you’ll be getting a gorgeous book and doing something nice for the LGBT community, and how often can you say that?
But you might have to work to get a copy. The book sold out in my comics shop, and it isn’t even available from Amazon until Jan. 10. The digital edition, however, is on the DC Comics app now, and it includes even more material.
One more thing: Never stop dancing.