HitFix

Did DC’s ‘Shazam!’ Introduce A Gay Superhero Before The Marvel Cinematic Universe Did?

Warner Bros. Pictures

[Spoilers for anyone who hasn’t seen Shazam!]

As many reviews have pointed out, including our own, Shazam! is a lot of fun. It’s funny and heartfelt, and I can’t get over how adorable little Darla is. She is a good sister! Shazam! (this post is filthy with exclamation points) spends a lot of time on the power of family and Billy Batson’s rejection-turned-acceptance of those who care about him, including Darla; family is also how Shazam defeats Dr. Thaddeus Sivana at the Chilladelphia (nice) Winter Festival. To take down the evil doc and his seven deadly sins, Captain Sparklefingers embeds his foster siblings — Freddy, Mary, Eugene, Pedro, and Darla — with the same superhero powers that he has. Of the kids, Pedro has the least amount to do and say in the film, but he may be a historic character nonetheless.

After Shazam transports his brothers and sisters to the safest place he knows, a Philly strip club, Mary scolds him for taking them somewhere seedy, Darla is upset that she didn’t get any glitter, and Pedro seems non-plussed by the whole situation. His exact words: “Not my thing.” It’s a pointed line that could mean one of two things: he genuinely doesn’t care about seeing naked women (unlikely), or, as I and many others believe, he would rather see naked men.

If that’s the case, then Pedro, once he gets his lightning bolt, would become the first gay superhero in both the DC Extended Universe and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. (Valkyrie isn’t canon… yet.) Confirmed: he is Funko Pop!-worthy.

Marvel’s production chief Victoria Alonso recently said that the “the world is ready” for the MCU’s first gay superhero (the world was ready a decade ago, but that’s neither here nor there), but it looks DC beat them to it… like they did with the first female-led superhero movie, too. The DCEU may not be as critically admired as the MCU, but it’s low-key (not Loki) more contemporary.

Shazam!, which stars Zachary “Chuck” Levi as the titular superhero (who has never heard of Captain Marvel, why do you ask), is expected to make $45-$50 million at the box office this weekend. Be sure to stay through the credits.

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