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In September of 2010, Dan Parent of Archie Comics added Kevin Keller to the mix, making him the first gay character in the history of Archie Comics. And in February of 2012, Kevin Keller got a series of his own, and around the same time, he also appeared as an adult in Life with Archie magazine, which featured him getting married to his partner Clay. Now, Paul Kupperberg, the writer of Life with Archie, recently released Kevin, a young adult novel that follows Kevin before he met Archie and the gang, starting with his experiences in middle school where he was forced to deal with bullying, and the problems of being “different” in the midst of puberty.
In other LGBT book news, Really Big Coloring Books, Inc. recently debuted an expansive LGBT coloring book to shelves. It’s called Being Gay is Okay: A Practical Novel for Children, Adults and Educators on Gay Life. Composed by a group of individuals, half of which were gay and half of which had little to no knowledge about the gay community, the book aims to start a conversation about LGBTQ history and education. Included is a sample “coming out letter” to aid individuals in coming out to their friends and family, a timeline of gay history, information about the Kinsey Scale for sexuality, tips on how to handle bullying and anti-gay treatment, as well as places of employment in the United States that have been notoriously gay-friendly. Also a part of the book are “Fabulous Gay Sharing Cards” that feature a series of renowned individuals who have been long-time supporters of human rights and who serve as role models for members of the gay community.
And Out has created a list of their own renowned LGBTQ role models, 15 people from the 20th century they believe have reached the status of legends, “both for positive change as well as negative results.” The list includes Harvey Milk, the first openly gay elected official in California who was later assassinated, Larry Kramer, creator of ACT UP and writer of the play The Normal Heart, and Edie Windsor, one of the two people responsible for initiating the case against the Defense of Marriage Act that is currently under the review of the Supreme Court.
This June, a new sitcom is scheduled to premiere on ABC Family called The Fosters. Produced by Jenifer Lopez, the show captures the experiences of a mixed raced lesbian couple, Stef Foster and Lena Adams, and their children, one biological son from a previous marriage and two adopted fraternal twins. The plot begins to unfold when the couple cautiously agrees to take in a teenage girl named Callie who has suffered from abuse and been tossed between foster homes for much of her life. They do so with the notion that this arrangement will be temporary until she is able to find a more permanent place to live.
Lastly, an ad agency in France known as DDB Paris was recently granted a Yellow Pencil Award from the UK’s Designers and Art Directors Club, one of the most prestigious awards in the industry, on behalf of their advertisements for a French literacy campaign. The agency used conventional layouts and arrangements for products and resources such as movies, makeup, and automobiles but placed unconventional text around the images related to literacy. In this way, they were able to prove how trained the human mind has become to focus attention on certain things but to ignore others. Check out all of the advertisements here.