Meet Marvel’s Dreamy New Hero, Somnus

Image via Marvel Comics

Here he is folks, your new queer Marvel hero.

Last week, we shared with you the fact that Marvel Comics was planning to announce a new LGBTQ superhero in its upcoming special Pride issue. And now, they’ve revealed the name and design of this new character.

In a tweet on Marvel Entertainment’s official Twitter account, Marvel introduced the world to Somnus. The new character is a mutant living in the mutant nation of Krakoa. An adjoining post on the official Marvel site gave more information on the new character. Somnus’s real name is Carl Valentino. In addition, we know that the character’s powers involve controlling people’s dreams.

Unfortunately, nothing else is known about the character. But, we do know that Somnus will have his backstory explained in MARVEL’S VOICES: PRIDE #1. Somnus will also feature at the center of the issue’s variant cover (seen above). His story was written by Steve Orlando. In addition, Luciano Vecchio designed the hero’s costume and Claudia Aguirre then drew the character in the Pride issue.

“Somnus, Carl Valentino, is inspired not only by my own family history, but by my experiences with past generations of LGBTQ+ folks from across the country, people I wouldn’t have met without comics,” Orlando explained in an official statement. “While there is still plenty of work to do, we’ve also come a long way as a community. Somnus is a chance to explore how my own late queer relatives may have felt, living in more prejudiced times. He’s also a chance to celebrate past generations as a whole and acknowledge the strides we’ve made that they may not have lived to see. And with the Krakoan era being one of relative utopia for mutantkind, Somnus will bring a fresh perspective, and respectful gut check, to the young mutants of the present who may not know just how hard some had to fight for all mutants have achieved. Within the story and without, Somnus will be a new, complex character carrying a message of respect, power, and vision.”

Again, Somnus will appear in the Pride special issue called Marvel’s Voices: Pride #1. The issue will explore small stories about several LGBTQ heroes from Marvel Comics. This includes Wiccan and Hulkling, Iceman, Mystique and Destiny, Karma, Akihiro, Nico Minoru and Karolina Dean, and more.

“MARVEL’S VOICES: PRIDE is ticking so many dream assignments for me!” exclaimed Vecchio. “On top of doing the cover, a frame variant, and a story that I got to write myself, I also got to design a new queer character introduced in a story written by Steve Orlando. I’m so happy to finally collaborate officially with Steve and I fell in love with Somnus’ concept and backstory right away. I got some input from him and editor Sarah Brunstad but also a lot of liberty to propose ideas. This time the design process itself felt almost like channeling. I wanted him to have an air of ‘man of your dreams,’ very charming and human but unreachable at the same time. Some visual elements are a mix of Mod fashion, a bit of Hellfire Gala influence, and a palette based on Etruscan vase art as a nod to the god he’s named after.”

MARVEL’S VOICES: PRIDE #1 goes on sale on June 23.

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