Jun 19, 2019

The Gay Tease of "Always Be My Maybe"

Netflix recommended this movie for me with a 98% match: Sasha and Marcus had a brief romance in high school.  15 years later, Sasha has become a celebrity chef, while Marcus is still living in his parents' basement.  They feel the spark of attraction again, but can they adapt to each other's worlds?

I sat stunned.  Blurbs about movies with gay people don't include the terms "romance" or "spark of attraction."  They say "forbidden love" and "attraction that threatens to destroy their lives."

And the title would never be Always Maybe.  It would be something like Alex Strangelove.    But the illustration -- it's hard to see from across the room -- seems to show two men.  And Sasha and Marcus are both boys' names.

Remember Sasha Mitchell, sitcom star turned martial artist (top photo)?

And Marcus Schenkenberg, the Swedish model who was popping up all over the tv screen in the 1990s?

Could a gay romance be presented so nonchalantly, as "a romance"?  Could gay people be just....people?  How come we overcame, and nobody told me?

Just to be sure, I checked the byline: Ali Wong, Randall Park, James Saito.  Two of those people are Sasha and Marcus, and all three are men.

So I turned it on.

More after the break.

Whoops.  Ali Wong is a girl. At least, there are feminine pronouns on her wikipedia page, and she has given birth.

I assume she's not Muslim, so why does she have an Arabic boy's name meaning "Champion"?

So to be clear, a girl who looks like a boy, who has a boy's name, plays a girl who looks like a boy and has a boy's name, and who falls in love with a boy.  

 Major tease!

By the way, the title is actually ALWAYS be my MAYBE, with the "be my" in 8 point font.

"After all that work to draw in the gay audience," I thought, "This movie had better have some gay characters."

The Plot:  Sasha (a girl) and Marcus (a  boy) were childhood friends who had heterosexual sex. 15 years later, Sasha is a female celebrity chef who looks like Ugly Betty, engaged to a man, Brandon Choi (Daniel Dae Kim).  "She" dumps him after he postpones the wedding for the 3,000th time, and returns home to San Francisco....

Yep, this movie is set in San Francisco, Gay Heaven.

Where "she" runs into Marcus (a boy) now an unsuccessful singer who is nice to his father, and has a terrible relationship with a girl.

The two still are attracted to each other, but before they can have sex again, Marcus has to give his girlfriend the boot.  But by that time, Sasha (a girl) has started dating another boy, Keanu Reeves (playing himself as a jerk).

Wondering who Sasha ends up with, the jerk celebrity or the poor-but-nice guy?

Gay character: In a twist on the swishy gay best friend, Sasha's bestie is a lesbian (Michelle Buteau). She's pregnant.

Marcus also has a best friend, Tony (Karan Soni). He never mentions any attraction to anyone,  I can't tell if he's gay or not.

Beefcake:  We see Marcus shirtless (here he hooks up with a drag queen in the short film Blueberry).  Not a bad physique.

The main actors are Asian, so that's a blow for racial equality, anyway.

My grade: B for the movie, D for the gay tease.

By the way, I have several celebrity hookup stories about Keanu Reeves.See: Lane Hooks Up with Keanu Reeves and His Boy Toy

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