Nov 12, 2013

Erik Palladino: The Guy from "Latter Days" Goes Gay-Vague

Every gay-themed movie of the 1990s and early 2000s had to have a character dying of AIDS.  In Latter Days (2003), it was Keith (Erik Palladino), who had nothing much to do with the plot, except to demonstrate that partyboy Christian (Wes Ramsey) wasn't entirely self-centered.

Erik Palladino was a bold casting choice for the sensitive, wounded Keith.  Growing up on the mean streets of Yonkers, arrested for assault at age 17, a heavy-metal rocker, the actor had previously played tough, no-nonsense,  working-class heterosexual Italian types, such as Michael Nardini on Love and Marriage (1996), Vinnie in The Day the Girl Died (1998), and Dr. Dave Malucci on ER (1999-2001).  

He hasn't played a gay character since, although he did appear in the gay-themed play The Sonneteer at the Gay & Lesbian Community Center in 2011.

But his various cops, detectives, and horror-movie victims have provided us with some gay subtexts.

In the comedy-horror Dead & Breakfast (2004), he buddy-bonds with Jeremy Sisto at a sinster hotel.

L.A. Dicks (2005) is about a stand-off between two buddy pairs, cops and detectives.

I haven't seen Crash and Burn (2008), but the premise, about an ex-car thief working as an undercover cop who hooks up with his old gang, has some buddy-bonding potential.

Tony DeMeo (Erik), the doorman at the sinister 666 Park Avenue (2012-2013) gives me a gay vibe.  Maybe it's his lack of heterosexual interest, or his relationship with Shaw (Nick Chinlund).

Erik is a gay ally, of course.

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