Aug 18, 2015

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

The Diary of a Wimpy Kid (2010) contains a rather blatant gay subtext that is not present in the original novel by Jeff Kinney.

Seventh grader Greg Heffley (12-year old Zachary Gordon) often manipulates his  "dorky" friend Rowley (Robert Capron). When Greg lets him take the blame for a mishap involving kindergarteners and the Safety Patrol, Rowley breaks up with him and starts seeing cool kid Collin (Alex Ferris).  Greg tries to move on by dating Fregley (Grayson Russell), but that only makes him realize how much he cares for Rowley.

He apologizes for the Safety Patrol misdeed, but Rowley is still angry.  Besides, as Collin's arm-candy, he is now moving in the elite circles of the popular kids.  When Greg approaches him at the big dance and asks him out for ice cream, Collin coolly leads him off, stating that "we already have plans."

Later, on the schoolyard, the two fight, and then reconcile.  They are named "cutest friends."  How overt is that?

In the sequel, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules (2011), Greg is back to manipulating Rowley -- in some rather nasty ways -- while the lying-breakup-reconciliation plot is reprised with his older brother Rodrick (Devon Bostick).  It's interesting to see a teenage character displaying no heterosexual interest, but the buddy-bonding is problematic as Greg increasingly acts like a jerk.

I haven't seen the final installment in the trilogy, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days (2012), but reviewers have panned it for Greg's general nastiness, and for its homophobia.

Greg and Rowley may still be friends, but in order to assure viewers that they are not. . .um, that way. . .they cringe at physical contact, refuse to sleep in the same bed, and try their hardest to avoid seeing each other nude or in their underwear.

Maybe it's the director's fault: the first installment was directed by Thor Freudenthal, and the last two by David Bowers.

Zachary Gordon hasn't made any public pro- or anti-gay statements, but Devon Bostick tweeted in support of gay marriage.