Gay Villains in the News

The Rise of the Gay Villain 

By Shaun Knittel 
Best Gay News Magazine Staff Writer 
A new era of gay rights has ushered in some long awaited changes. The number of states to offer legal same-sex marriage to its taxpayers is on the rise, polling on most issues that are of importance to the LGBT community are beginning to swing in our direction, and although we’ve still got a lot of work to do, it wasn’t half bad being LGBT in 2012.
Interestingly, there’s another aspect of gay visibility on the rise: Gay Villains. 
That’s right, you read that correctly. Gone are the limp-wristed sissies who say “fabulous” after describing nearly everything as such. Written off TV are the vain and effeminate fashion-consciousness gay side-kick that says “You go girl” every time their girlfriend does something to stick up for herself.
 I say, “Thank God.”
And I say, “Good riddance.” 
GLAAD, which tracks representations of gays in pop culture, maintains that as the number of LGBT characters increases in TV and film, it makes sense that there would be more villains. 
The question asked by the Chicago Tribune this weekend is, “whether they are villainous because they are gay, or villains who just happen to also be gay?” 
“In the early days of LGBT characters on screen, it was often the case that a character’s sexual orientation or gender identity was directly tied to their villainous nature as things like lecherous prison guards, blackmailers, or even psychotic killers,” Matt Kane, GLAAD’s associate director of entertainment media, said. 
“Though that’s almost never the case now, it’s still something writers and directors should be conscious of. What this also highlights, however, is that there are still too few LGBT protagonists and leads in popular media, particularly in genre film and television. Where is the gay equivalent to James Bond?” 
He doesn’t exist … yet.
“Today’s gay villains are so stereotypically masculine that we might not know they were gay if they didn’t say so themselves,” said Tim Molloy at Reuters. “They are gay because they like the same sex – not because of their pets.”
 “As an audience, we respect the gay villains a bit more, guessing at the bigotry they’ve likely had to overcome: They have made it to the top of such hyper-masculine and probably homophobic institutions as drug cartels, the Russian mob, and before they went rogue,” writes Molloy.
Read the full story at the Chicago Tribune