Jon Kent is out as a bisexual actor and “Superman & Lois” Jordan Elsass is freaking out already?
DC Comics has decided to blow up Twitter by confirming Jon Kent (son of Clark Kent and Lois Lane) as bisexual. Of course, fans wondered what that would mean for Jon’s live action on The CW’s superman and louis TV shows. From what I can tell, actor Jordan Elsass, who plays Jon, isn’t too fond of the idea. Not him panicking! Ha!
To be fair. I understand that sometimes the real context of what an actor says during interviews can be lost when their words are typed. We also can’t hear their tone or see their facial expressions. However, that said, from what I could tell, Jordan Elsass would be very happy if his live portrayal of Jon Kent continues to stay straight.
Going through decision maker, here’s what Elsass had to say when asked if Jon was bisexual in the comics and whether or not it might have an impact Superman and Lois:
“It’s a different Earth,” Elsass said, noting that he saw the news about his comic book counterpart earlier today. “It’s a different version of Jon Kent. And you have to remember there are other differences as well. Jon Kent, in this universe, as far as we know, doesn’t have any powers yet. So there’s always this possibility, of course, especially growing up, these formative years, there are things to explore. But I don’t necessarily know if it will be one of those things. Jon Kent, in this universe, at least for the instant, was established as straight.”
Where are the PR teams for the actors when you need them to answer questions about queer representation in the media? I’m available! Sigh!
Elsass’ answer can actually be used as ammunition for those who rolled their eyes at DC Comics confirming Jon’s bisexuality while explaining how the company is pleasing the queer community by taking such a step. This group of people (which included members of the LGBTQ+ community) shared that Jon’s bisexuality was nothing more than a marketing gimmick to temporarily boost comic book sales, because if DC Comics and TPTB were actually supporting such a decision, they should 100% bear with this. This means that Jon Kent should be portrayed as bisexual in all current and future portrayals of the superpowered character, which includes Superman and Lois.
From what Elsass said, Jon might not be going bisexual anytime soon. Not only that, Elsass even mentioned that his Jon is from a “different Earth” as if that was excuse enough to proclaim how Jon was “established as straight.”
I don’t know if Elsass realizes this, but continuing to portray a canon queer character as “straight” or ignoring a canon queer character’s sexuality falls under the definition of Straightwashing. Elsass’ comments gave me a flashback to how The CW tried to make John Constantine “straight” on his 2014 solo series.
Plus, when the heck Jon was “established as straight” in the first season of Superman and Lois? Did we get a scene where Jon proclaimed he didn’t like guys at all? Did I miss an episode or two? Let me know!
The fact that Elsass was so quick to try and counter the possibility of playing a bisexual Jon is what makes me cast him aside. And it’s ironic because by the time Elsass as Jon Kent made his debut in the very first episode, fans were quick to theorize that he was probably going to be “the gay,” and that was long before the rumors that Jon is bisexual in the comics. books appeared online. Ha!
Not only Elsass, but his co-star Alex Garfin (who plays Jon’s younger brother, Jordan Kent) also decided to step in for some reason. He shared:
“Honestly, this show likes to explore the inner workings of those dynamics at such a close level, that that level of complexity, adding sexuality to it would be very intense, and it might be something down the line,” added Garfin. “But right now, it’s a Superman story. Superman isn’t a linear thing. We’re taking what we love about comics, what the writers…love about comics, and telling the story that we want to tell. This is the story [showrunner] Todd [Helbing] wants to tell, and he’s telling a great one right now, so we’ll see where that leads.
It’s rich coming from Garfin when part of his character as Jordan involved having feelings for Sarah Cushing (India Navarrette). So, according to Garfin, Jordan having a crush on Sarah is the right kind of sexuality for a show about super-powered aliens, but Jon realizing he’s bisexual would make things too complex and intense? For who? Cishet straight viewers?
For now, I’m just disappointed with the answers offered by the two actors, especially Elsass. I’m not surprised though. It wouldn’t be the first time an actor got defensive about the possibility that he was “established as straight.” fictional the character could be strange.
Giving an iconic pop culture couple like Clark Kent and Lois Lane a queer young son and having them support Jon is a huge deal. But what good will Jon being bisexual actually do if he stays clean in other media, especially when it comes to live action which is well known for its hot gay characters. MCU, what’s good?
Developed by Greg Berlanti and Todd Helbing, the first season of Superman and Lois debuted February 23, 2021 on The CW. While the show opened with a bang, over the course of the series live viewing numbers plummeted, with the season finale (episode 15) drawing just 0.62 million live viewers, a sharp drop from the premiere’s 1.75 million live viewers. It is The Walking Dead: World Beyond level of bad, especially for an iconic IP address.
The show has been renewed for a second season to air in early 2022. Let’s see what kind of viewing numbers it’s able to maintain and what the creative team decides to do with Jon being bisexual in the source material.
You can read Jamie’s reviews of the first season of Superman and Lois here.
What is your opinion on Jon’s queer sexuality and how it should be treated in different mediums?
Let us know.
Farid holds a double master’s degree in psychology and biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in molecular genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville and The Game Master of Somerville. It gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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