Sep 15, 2013

Andre Kinney: Disney Teen Star, Gay Without a Doubt

In Armored (2009), 19-year old Andre Kinney played Jimmy Hackett, the younger brother of security guard Ty Hackett (Columbus Short, left), and the object of his last-minute rescue and fade-out hug.

In Relative Stranger (2009), about a father (Eriq La Salle) trying to reconnect with his family, Andre played the gay-vague best friend of the teenage daughter.

Andre was a Disney teen on the first season of Hannah Montana (2006-2007): He played Cooper, the gay-vague best friend of Hannah's older brother Jackson (Jason Earles).  Disney pulled out every trick it could think of, other than Saying the Word, to indicate that Cooper was gay.  

He had feminine leisure interests, drank "fruity" drinks, and had a blatantly intimate, physical relationship with Jackson.  After the first season, he was written out; Jackson was becoming increasingly gay-coded himself, and giving him a gay-coded best buddy would be a little too obvious, even for Disney.

In 2003-2004, he had a recurring role on NYPD Blue as Michael Woodruff, a boy who witnessed his father murder his mother, now living with Detective Jones (Henry Simmons, left). Hollywood Reporter Nancy Mills, unaware that gay men exist, states that the unveiling of Detective Jones "created a major flutter among female viewers with his sculpted-by-Michelangelo physique."  But he also caused a flutter in Michael Woodruff.

Before that, as an 11-year old, he starred in the short "Sonny Listening" (2002) is about a young boy "finding his heart in an abandoned boxing gym."  I haven't seen it, but it stars Andre Kinney and Art Evans, Bruce Willis' boyfriend in Die Hard 2, so I can imagine.

Last February, Andre posted a picture of himself, his killer abs, and his boyfriend on Instagram, and asked "Any questions?"

Although the media tried to get some buzz going with headlines like  "Disney GAY SHOCKER," no one was actually shocked.  10 years of  roles as gay-vague kids and teens who get crushes on hunky men -- was there any doubt?