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Kingdom Hearts & acknowledging LGBTQ+ content from Disney source material ReMIX



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Oracle Spockanort

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Okay losers, I’m trying this topic again. Now that FFXVI is going to feature a big 30 minute gay sex scene (it’s not), I need you all to sit down and genuinely consider the idea that KH4 and future titles can possibly feature openly queer characters.

LGBTQ+ characters have been appearing in more prominently in Disney properties over the years and their roles are only expanding into larger roles. Ethan from Strange World is one of the most current examples of a character who is a lead in a major theatrical production by Walt Disney Animation Studios who is openly gay and not in an inconsequential way.

And this representation will only expand in future projects. There are already rumors about Wish due to the fact that the lead character, Asha, is being played by Ariana DeBose who is openly queer.

We’ve had a few previous Disney films feature LGBTQ+ characters (i.e. Cruella, Jungle Cruise, Lightyear, Zootopia, Turning Red), or have had the cast of those films state that they played their characters as gay (i.e. Raya and the Last Dragon), or are read as LGBTQ+ stories like Luca. We also have the Disney Channel/D+ shows like the Owl House, Baymax, Proud Family, etc. that feature openly gay characters in lead and supporting roles.

Star Wars has a gay slug and his cankerous partner. We respect the gay slug.

My point is that for all of the people who posted in the previous topic that were quick to shut down any discussion, this is something that will not be going away and will be woven deeply into narratives as we move forward.

This is not a matter of inserting “sexual content” into these properties or into KH. Nothing about it is anymore sexual than a girl and guy getting together at the end of a story. This is about real identities being portrayed and represented in new, interesting stories.

Now, my point in bringing this up (again) is to know how you all feel SE will go about implementing content like this into KH. I don’t mean “will Nomura cut it out of the plot”

I mean, will Nomura and the creative staff be able to do these stories justice and adapt them in a respectful manner? Will they consider also creating original characters that are LGBTQ+ or confirming existing ones have been LGBTQ+?

Dismissive statements with little thought behind them will lead to thread bans. Homophobic comments will lead to automatic bans. If this topic goes sour, I’ll just close it and be done with it.
 

Cyborg009

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to be honest, i don't really mind if they use LGBTQ+ characters or not. personally i got no qualms against the idea at all and think its an interesting idea to follow.
 

Elysium

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Since this will come down to Nomura--with both companies not being against it these days--I'll say... I think Nomura keeps characters with multiple popular ships in the vague area because it's good for business since it creates more energy in a game's fandom. But maybe some characters where there is only one major ship for them our there (like Xehaqus) might happen? I thought of LeaIsa first, but I guess there are a few other popular ships that might feature Lea which might make Nomura less likely to make that one legitimate. But fingers crossed!
 

Launchpad

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In truth, I think they'll handle it as they've handled all Disney romances; barely. Maybe a kiss in the credits sequence, maybe an offhand remark from SDG about how two characters seem perfect for each other, but as always I doubt we're going to delve. Since they seem to be rolling with SoKai lately, I think it'd be impressive if we saw a gay relationship and Sora (or more likely, Donald and Goofy) were able to draw comparisons to his relationship with Kairi, so as to illustrate that love is love, plainly

If they introduce an original gay character I'd be stoked but somehow I doubt this will happen
 

BufferAqua

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I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve always found Riku somewhat queer-coded. Not sure why but he sets my gaydar off *thonk*

I’d especially want queer women in KH. Judging by how the female characters are underutilized, I think exploring a sapphic relationship would be very fascinating.
 
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Idreamaboutcats

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30 minutes of sex? Please point where because I am going through the longest dry spell of my life.

Jokes aside, the representation is cool, if they ever implement those movies into the game. Not sure about the Disney Channel/Disney+ IP for a whole other reason.

Will Nomura and the staff be able to do them justice? Most likely no, but not because gay. It’s more of a case of recent IPs being closely guarded by Disney and stifling creative freedom. Remember Arendelle? Will he at least be respectful about it? I don’t know, but he’d probably just throw it there like the original source of the IP did and then keep telling Sora’s story.

I think Launchpad is right, they’ll handle it like all Disney romances: tame, light, and in the background.

If you’re asking about queer representation and romance in the main character cast…the already main character cast that exists have really subtle subtext in romance. Nomura can’t write romance. The biggest hint we got was Xion taking on Kairi’s appearance because she’s Sora’s most precious memory, and even then before the final battle in III Sora and Kairi shared two separate fruits and didn’t even kiss.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve always found Riku somewhat queer-coded. Not sure why but he sets my gaydar off *thonk*
I’ll be the opposite and admit that I never found anything Riku did to be queer. It looked like his friendship with Sora was more of a brotherhood than anything romantic. It’s like Noctis and his friends, just written better and more expressive. A lot of the other fans sure see things the same way you do though.
 

BufferAqua

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I’ll be the opposite and admit that I never found anything Riku did to be queer. It looked like his friendship with Sora was more of a brotherhood than anything romantic.
I’m not talking about Soriku. I just meant in general.
 

Idreamaboutcats

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I’m not talking about Soriku. I just meant in general.
Oh, okay…yeah, maybe? I still don’t see it except maybe the “Sound Idea” scene and him being Sora’s protector in 3D, but even then it still feels more like brotherhood, but I’m probably just oblivious.

For scenes with him not involving Sora, I definitely haven’t picked up on anything.
 

Launchpad

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if I had a dollar for every time someone replied to someone talking about Riku being queer-coded or SoRiku with "I don't know, to me they are just brothers" i'd have enough money to purchase and shut down this forum
 

WaltK

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and even then before the final battle in III Sora and Kairi shared two separate fruits and didn’t even kiss.
A lot of people seem to interpret "sharing a paopu fruit" as each eating a piece of the same fruit, but it's made clear from as early as Sora and Kairi's cave drawing in KH1 that giving each other their own fruit counts as sharing.

But, that's off-topic.
 

Launchpad

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My reading of gay characters in KH is that there's only one and he's a guy called Riku. I can't help but read most of his actions in CoM, KH2, DDD, KH3, and MoM as being motivated by love for Sora. I don't think it'll ever be spoken, or reciprocated (KH3 pretty definitively did the SoKai thing) but I don't think Riku views this as a tragedy, his big feelings for Sora have made him a better person and he's probably just grateful to have grown into a more heroic guy thanks to Sora.

I mean, Riku's love for Sora is so powerful that it broke KH's most powerful convention. Riku went after Sora without consulting Yen Sid and listening to exposition. It's just too beautiful.

As far as world properties with LGBTQ characters... I don't think any of the properties listed in the OP are on their way to becoming worlds, save for Star Wars, which will cover a hetero-only era of the SW franchise. I'd bet good money that there won't be a single explicitly gay moment in KH4, but I expect it for sure in future games beyond KH4. As it stands now, in the main animated films, Disney has still yet to do something so explicitly gay that it HAS to end up in a potential KH adaptation. Future films will likely change that, but it's not happening on this go around
 

Elysium

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When people discuss possibilities regarding Riku, I'm sort of torn. I wouldn't mind him being confirmed in literal terms to be in love with Sora (unreciprocated), but I'm not sure if I'd want him paired up with some other (most likely new) male character in the long-term if they ever did that.
 

Ðari

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Do I need to post the 6 hour Riku is gay video and its companion video that I think is an extra hour?
In the tiktok era, you really think this community is gonna hit the 59 second mark? Let alone 6 hours? You're way more charitable than me lol.

Jokes aside.

SE's writing team is getting younger as the years go by, it should surprise no one if we see implementation of these kind of stories, character dynamics, and character expressions going forward. Personally, I feel like strong adverse reactions in an IP you grew up that's largely tried not to actively tell these kind of stories will alarm some older fans (respectfully). Other than that reception will be "neither here nor there" or just outright accepted since it's generally a vibe in most millenials and Gen Z crowd.

Here here!
 

Luminary

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As others said, I think it is unlikely we’ll see it in KH4, but I think there’s a strong chance we’ll see it in this new saga. If they adapt these more recent properties, the original creators are likely going to have some influence and will hopefully require that any queer elements not be erased. They can also help make sure it gets the care it deserves.

I do have some concern that opening up the franchise to Star Wars, Marvel, etc. may give them more options to avoid using properties that feature anything queer for a while yet. (Sure those franchises have some minor representation, but most of the stories within them don’t.)

Disney characters aside, I want Fang and Vanille to show up in Quadratum as a couple. The XIII crew would be clear choices to show up there considering the ending of Lightning Returns.

And while it might come off a bit stereotypical due to his pink hair and flower powers, I wouldn’t mind Lauriam being confirmed as queer. His relationship with his sister and friendship with Elrena will probably be at the forefront of his story going forward, but maybe they’ll find some room for some romance.
 

LoneFox

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And while it might come off a bit stereotypical due to his pink hair and flower powers, I wouldn’t mind Lauriam being confirmed as queer. His relationship with his sister and friendship with Elrena will probably be at the forefront of his story going forward, but maybe they’ll find some room for some romance.
Just make him accidentally reveal that he would have preferred Ephemer over Elrena. And then Elrena zaps him with thundaga for that... :p

Now, about Riku... He has been used for all kinds of fanservice in several games, most notably DDD, and I think that is the cause of the confusion about him. If you think about it, the only one where he has shown any romantic interest in anyone is KH1, where he believes to be competing with Sora over Kairi (of course, he has already lost at the beginning, but he either doesn't know or refuses to believe it). Currently he probably has some feelings for Naminé, even if he doesn't want to show it. Repliku definitely did, and we have been told that he should be considered a version of Riku rather than a separate character. With all this, I see Riku as one of the least likely characters in the series to have same-sex preferences.

But there are other characters who do have them. In addition to Lauriam, there is very obviously Axel, and possibly Aqua. Her preferences are unclear, but for sure she hasn't shown any interest in men at all. And then there is the relationship between Xehanort and Eraqus in DR. That one is intentionally written to be ambiguous, and I get the vibe that Nomura wanted to do more with it than he was allowed to. Note that Eraqus, by his name, represents the whole Square Enix company, and that probably restricts what can be done with him.
 

BufferAqua

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Currently he probably has some feelings for Naminé, even if he doesn't want to show it.
My lord I like how people assume Riku likes Namine even though there’s no confirmation whatsoever, yet completely dismiss Soriku in almost every way possible. This is coming from someone who ships Riku and Namine too.

As for Riku apparently liking Kairi in KH1, he admitted that he was joking and only did it to fuck with Sora. I thought that confirmed he had no obvious romantic feelings for Kairi.
 

Oracle Spockanort

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Nomura already confirmed anything people viewed from KH3 in relation to Riku and Namine was strictly just Riku doing things in proxy for Repliku. Like…Riku’s smile to Namine in the ending was reduced in ReMind.
 

BufferAqua

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Nomura already confirmed anything people viewed from KH3 in relation to Riku and Namine was strictly just Riku doing things in proxy for Repliku. Like…Riku’s smile to Namine in the ending was reduced in ReMind.
Ahhh that makes sense.

Yeah with Namine that was definitely more of a Repliku thing. And I thought the point of Repliku was that he became his own entity anyway, so his implied romantic feelings for Namine likely has nothing to do with the actual Riku.
 
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