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REPRESENTATION

It's been a long time coming, but Marvel have finally unleashed the second phase of the MCU and it's diverse AS F*CK. We're in heaven.

One of the best snippets of superhero news we've heard from Comic Con (apart from Natalie Portman as female Thor, that slayed us) is the first openly LGBTQ+ hero arriving to the party.

Fan-fave character Valkyrie, played by the incredible Tessa Thompson, will have an LGBTQ+ storyline in the fourth Thor movie, due out November 2021.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The character is bisexual in the comics, and was portrayed by the actress in Thor: Ragnarok and Avengers: Endgame.

Thor: Love and Thunder will feature Chris Hemsworth as the titular character, Natalie Portman slaying as his female equal and now Tessa as Valkyrie. Wow.

Appearing at Marvel Studios' Comic-Con panel in Hall H over the weekend, Thompson announced to the audience:

"As new king, she needs to find her queen. So that will be the first order of business. She has some ideas. I'll keep you posted."

When asked whether Valkyrie will have an LGBTQ+ storyline, MCU boss Kevin Feige told io9: "The answer is yes.

"How that impacts the story remains to be seen with that level of representation you’ll see across our films, not in just Thor 4."

Feige added to Collider that Marvel fans will also be treated to an LGBTQ+ character in The Eternals as well: Long may it reign.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Marvel has come under fire for its lack of LGBTQ+ representation in recent years, with Feige promising work on developing this hole in the franchise: 

"We have both ones you've seen and ones you haven't seen," he said.

A deaf woman-of-colour, Lauren Ridloff, was also cast in The Eternals, alongside Richard Madden and Angelina Jolie.

The next Captain America (Falcon) is now a black man, a woman will play Thor, Mahershala Ali is starring in the Blade reboot and an Asian-Canadian newcomer Simu Liu snagged his role as Shang-Chi by literally annoying Marvel on Twitter.

Black Panther 2 is also in the works, and hilarious actress/comedian Awkwafina will join Simu Liu in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. 

Much diversity, many feels. Thank Goddess they came to their senses and decided to include people, now we need women and people of colour, as well as people with disabilities in the writing room and director's seats.

Many fans are pointing out that the billion-dollar company waited until it was convenient and profitable for them to bring diversity to the table, but we just have to be grateful they finally stepped up.

Avengers: Endgame has just become the best-selling movie of all time, beating out Avatar in the box office.

Feature image: Instagram/@captainsvalkyrie

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The September Issue is the most important issue of the year for any fashion publication. 

Teen Vogue have chosen to celebrate and showcase diversity with their choice of models this September, featuring three models with disabilities. 

'There wasn't anyone who looked like me in any magazines or mainstream media.' said Jillian Mercado, one of the stunning cover stars who has spastic muscular dystrophy.

 

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'It excluded me from something that I was very passionate about.'

Donning Comme-des-Garcons and Kenzo, Jillian's striking features and on-camera capabilities send a clear message – models with disabilities are here, they're talented, and they deserve recognition and representation.   

Model, amputee and disability activist Mama Cāx also features in the trio – and wrote a post to her 160,000 followers expressing her delight.

'This bald Haitian girl with one leg is on the freakin cover of Teen Vogue’s September issue,' she wrote. 'The past couple of weeks have been unbelievably surreal.'

 

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'When I started looking for a modelling agency 10 months ago, it was met with plenty of rejections but I love a challenge. I found a family at @jagmodels and have been so grateful to be represented by an agency that valued my personality and mission above everything.'

'@teenvogue launched their latest issue with 3 separate covers – defying beauty standards and showing that people with disabilities can have a space in fashion.'

'What makes us different, makes us unique, we become assets when we see this world through a unique lens. This is also a greater call to inclusion elsewhere–Our time is now. To the little girls who will see this, don't let anyone tell you you can't, dream the impossible and go for it.'

Gymnast and model Chelsea Werner poses elegantly atop a tier of fabric-covered platforms in a high-low mix of Marni and Reeboks on the third cover.

 

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The two time world champion gymnast and four time united states Special Olympics champion's powerful stance and life achievements are a stoic reminder of what can be achieved through hard work and perseverance, and opver on Instagram, she hails her Teen Vogue cover an ' amazing honour.'

The triad of images have received a huge amount of praise on social media.  

'I’ve never loved the cover (s) of a magazine more! Honestly you guys have the BEST September issue out,' reads one comment.

'This is so important. This is so long overdue,' said another. 

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