Tag Archive for gay

TV needs diverse queer characters: John Barrowman

This guest post was written by Sheena Goodyear, a reporter, blogger and copy editor for Sun Media. When she grows up, she wants to be Special Agency Dana Scully. You can read her thoughts about TV at Rabbit Ears, her video game ramblings at Button Mashers and her news stories at the Toronto Sun.

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Capt. Jack Harkness, bisexual superhero.

John Barrowman — known for playing Captain Jack Harnkess, possibly the first and only queer sci-fi hero on a children’s TV show — says LBGT people deserve to be represented on television all their diversity.

Capt. Jack originated on BBC’s Doctor Who and later got his own spin-off, the more adult-oriented Torchwood. The roguish, bisexual con man-turned-hero with a flirtatious charm that rivals James Bond’s is one of the best things to come out of the Russell T. Davies’ run on Who. 

In response to  question about queer representation in science fiction at a Fan Expo panel in Toronto on Sunday, Barrowman admitted mainstream  TV has more gay characters. But those characters, unlike Jack, tend to be reduced to stereotypes.

My big this is — and this is where I’m so proud of Capt. Jack and proud of what Russell and Steven and July Gardner and the BBC allowed me to help create — was the fact that I’m a hero. I’m not a flouncing queen — and there’s nothing wrong with that, don’t get me wrong — but there’s a very diverse group of gay men and women out there. And we need to be represented on television in the proper way. We don’t need to all be stereotyped on television.

That’s what happened in the mainstream. And unfortunately, certain audiences around the world only identify with types. For writers and people that are creating new shows and doing things differently and not just writing stereotypes, those are the shows we should stand up for and watch and be proud of.

There’s no doubt that Capt. Jack has been a huge role model for many a young LBGT geek. Take this blogger who says watching Jack on Doctor Who as a teenager helped her feel OK with who she was. Or the fans at Barrowman’s panel, many of whom stood up to identify themselves as queer and thank him for his portrayal of Jack.

But Barrowman himself is also a role model, putting a bit of himself into Jack and never shying away from his own sexuality in the spotlight. He speaks often about his longtime partner Scott Gill, despite industry pressure to keep quiet.

In fact, someone said to me, and this producer was gay himself, and he said to me, “You can’t say ‘your partner’ and you shouldn’t talk about this you shouldn’t do that and you shouldn’t be who you are.” And I went back to Scott and I said, “Look what should I do?” And he said, “Well, what do you want to do?” And I said, “Well, I’m not gonna ask you to hide and pretend, and go to a function and then pretend to have a girl on my arm because some people aren’t comfortable with it. That’s not my problem. So I’m gonna be who I am.”

You can catch Barrowman this fall on Arrow, which premiers Oct. 12 on the CW.

This post is cross-posted from Rabbit Ears.

Wibbly wobbly, timey linkspam

Via Fan Studies Network, a call for papers for a book about Doctor Who fandom published by Intellect. The book is meant to be accessible, so don’t be discouraged if you aren’t an academic.

From The Mary Sue, the Doctors as dinosaurs!

The tenth Doctor as a dinosaur. He is an anthromorphic brontosaurus stegosaurus, with green skin, red plates on his back and tail, a spiked tail. He is standing on his back feet, with his "hands" in his pockets. He has Tennant's blue suit with a brown trench, as well as his sticky-uppy brown hair and square black glasses.

Via The Atlantic, in the category of “completely obvious” news, a study shows that the objectification of women is a measurable and observable phenomenon. This isn’t the first study to show that sexualized women are perceived as objects by viewers.

From Doctor Who News, as I’m sure you’ve heard, Matt Smith bore the Olympic torch this year!

Matt Smith, holding the gold Olympic torch aloft , flashes the crowd a peace sign.

Feministing reports that One Million Moms (the optimistic name of a conservative hate group) is outraged by gay comic book characters. This after their important campaigns to keep representations of happy gay couples out of retail advertising.

An upcoming issue of Marvel's Astonishing X-Men will feature the wedding of Northstar and his boyfriend. In the image, Northstar and his boyfriend embrace at the altar, about to kiss. They are centered in the foreground, with other X-men in the middle ground, and city buildings in the background.

At The New Yorker, William Gibson writes about seeing the future in science fiction:

To a curious, anxious, white male child coming of age in an incurious and paranoid white monoculture, there was literally nothing like it—though a great deal of science fiction, possibly the majority of it, I was starting to notice, depicted futuristic monocultures that were dominated by white males. The rest, however, had as much to do with making me the person I am today as anything else did. Things might be different, science fiction told me, and different in literally any way you could imagine, however radical.

If you have a suggestion for our linkspam, please email it to: courtney (at) doctorher (dot) com.