May 13, 2018
Not Wearing a Sign
"How dare you say that Tony Danza on Taxi was gay? Or the guys in Orange County or Jaws? Or Yogi Bear and Boo Boo? You're reading too much into it! The authors never intended that!"
I hear statements like this a dozen times a week. If a character is not Wearing a Sign, not specifically stating "I am gay," he or she must be assumed heterosexual. Fiction is the last bastian where heterosexuals can breathe free, certain that they are alone in the world, that those pesky gay people do not exist.
I have news for them.
We viewers must figure it out for ourselves.
The main gay clues are:
Bonding (same-sex romance)
Domesticity (living together)
My hero (same sex rescues)
No girls/boys allowed (lack of heterosexual interest)
Beefcake (physical display)
If one or more of these clues are present, the character can be read as gay.
It's ok for different people to "read" different things into the text.
It's ok to see things that the authors didn't intend.
Therefore gay children are interlopers in an alien country. Everything they see, everything they hear, everything they read is meant for someone else.
They have to grab what they can.
If they must distort the text, misread a character, see things that aren't even there, that's fine.
When it's a matter of survival, anything goes.