Jul 10, 2015

Joe Manganiello: Gay Best Friend

Joe Manganiello, who starred as "Big Dick Richie" in Magic Mike (2012), is a strong gay ally, speaking at the HRC fundraiser in 2011, presenting buddy Matt Bomer (below) the GLSEN "Inspiration Award" in 2012,  hanging out with gay friends, being relaxed, even flirty with gay fans.

But is there any gay content in his on-screen work?

His first starring role was as someone named Black Dildo in The Ketchup King (2002).  I have no idea what that means.

Then he played Flash Thompson in Spider-Man (2002).  I walked out after Tobey Maguire made his heterosexist "all stories are about boys and girls" speech.

The evening soap One Tree Hill (2008-2010): he played Owen Morello, a former alcoholic who becomes a bartender and dates lots of women. Nope.

How I Met Your Mother (2006-2012), about a guy taking an interminably long time to tell his kids how he met their mother: he played Brad Morris, who buddies with Marshall, although he dates women.  He also says that he was "born a little different," so he may be intersexed.  Some queering there.

Then we get to some gay-positive projects:

So NoTorious (2007), about the "real life" Tori Spelling: he played Scott, her crush who turns out to belong to a weird cult.  But there's a gay character, Sasan (Zachary Quinto).

True Blood (2010-2013), about modern-day "out" vampires, with Martin Spanjers and Ryan Kwanten: he plays Alcide, head of a werewolf clan, who has sex with women.  But there are several gay characters, mostly vampires, and the gay-vampire symbolism is played to the hilt.

So: No gay characters, but lots of gay-positive work.

Maybe his man-mountain physique disqualifies him from gay roles, since gay men are still stereotyped as soft, fragile, delicate, and wispy.

Jul 6, 2015

A Beefcake Tour of Cleveland

That's right, Cleveland.

Since flying became such an ordeal, I've been driving back home every year to visit my parents in Indiana, and Cleveland, Ohio is about halfway.

It has the Flex Spa, one of the best gay resorts in the U.S., housed in the old Greyhound Station (2600 Hamilton).  Downstairs there's an indoor pool, an outdoor pool, a steam room-maze, a bar and restaurant, lounge areas, and a fully equipped gym.
Upstairs are the private rooms, porn theater, dark rooms, and a rooftop lounge area.

You can get a full-sized hotel room and spend the night, but  it's in a nasty neighborhood, so you should stay elsewhere.

There are two good restaurants nearby:
1. Slyman's Deli, 3106 St. Clair, for enormous portions of corned beef and Christian fundamentalist tracts.
2. Siam Cafe, 3951 St. Clair, for the best Pad Thai outside of Bangkok.

In between sessions at the Flex Spa, drive east on Euclid to University Circle, where all of the museums in town are arranged in a walkable loop: The Botanical Gardens, the Natural History Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Museum of Art, the Institute of Art.  Other than the hunky Carnegie-Mellon students jogging around the Wade Oval, the best beefcake sights are in Museum of Art (on East Drive).

1. Hosner's Sleeping Faun (above)

2. Rodin's Age of Bronze.

3. Bandelli's Nude Study (left)

 4. Meynier's Apollo.

5. Jacques-Louis David's Cupid and Psyche.  Ok, he's with a woman, but you have to admire the smirk!

6. Minne's Solidarity, two naked guys hugging.

More after the break


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