Is Spider-Verse’s Version Of Gwen Stacy The Trans Representative We All Needed?

Gwen Stacy

Gwen Stacy as a character has had a long history as a character, beginning as the girlfriend of Peter Parker, the original Spider-Man, before her death at the hands of Norman Osborn. 

The character has also made live-action appearances, played by Bryce Dallas Howard in ‘Spider-Man 3’ and Emma Stone in ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ and ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’. She eventually became a superhero herself with the introduction of a Gwen Stacy from an alternate universe who got bitten by the radioactive spider instead of Peter, turning her into Spider-Woman, also known as Ghost-Spider and Spider-Gwen.

The popularity of Gwen Stacy’s Spider-Woman has since skyrocketed with the 2018 animated film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, where Gwen takes on a supporting role to the main character of Miles Morales. The character returned in the sequel, ‘Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse’, and was given a more central role in the film. This came along with fans noticing clues that this version of Gwen might actually be a trans woman. Minor spoilers for the movie will be discussed, so read at your own discretion.

The hints were first noticed by fans when they noticed a poster in Gwen’s room from the movie’s trailer with the words “PROTECT TRANS KIDS” on it. On top of this, the universe she came from in the movie had a color scheme of pinks and blues, similar to the colors of the transgender pride flag.

While the film has not outright confirmed Gwen’s identity as a trans woman, some fans have also pointed out that her story of wanting to be accepted for who she is as Spider-Woman could be interpreted as an allegory for coming out. Replacing the word “Spider-Woman” in her conversations with her dad in the movie with the word “woman” turns her story into that of a trans woman struggling with the fear of not being accepted.

Regardless of whether the Spider-Verse franchise ever confirms whether their interpretation of Gwen is trans or not, many fans, especially those who are transgender themselves, have taken even more of a liking to this version of Gwen Stacy and have seen themselves even more in this character, which at the end of the day is a positive impact from the film, especially considering the timing of its release in June, widely celebrated as LGBT Pride Month worldwide.

 

Source: (1)

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