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    My daily writing--emails, journal entries, marginalia, more emails, blog posts, and tweets--shapes me as a writer, helping and hindering the big stuff I'm trying to accomplish. Every word counts.

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Straight Acting

I’m already tired of the self-congratulating heterosexuals involved with the film Milk. Last night I watched a promo on Logo. One of the actors seemed particularly reluctant to celebrate his accomplishment, admitting that he had to have a few drinks before performing a kiss with another guy.

Oh, please, mary. Queer actors have been convincingly acting out their straight characters’ romantic lives for a long damn time now. Here’s some free advice for him and his brethren: take some acting lessons.

I understand that for them kissing another guy might be a big deal, and some handle it better than others. Sean Penn was apparently so excited about his first kiss with another guy that he texted Madonna to brag about it. Challenging cultural norms is a big deal–yeah, I get that. And excited texting beats drunken dread.

To be fair, the “journalists” on Logo encourage the heroic view of straight actors who play gay. They ask stupid questions about what it’s like to kiss another guy, etc., etc., as if these actors’ simulation of historic events makes them as relevant as their publicists say they are.

Visibility costs, and although we seem to be profiting from it, we should consider who’s representing us and whether we’re benefiting as much as they are. And, of course, we should enjoy the movies but not depend on them to educate ourselves about history–queer history or otherwise.

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One Response

  1. Very interesting entry about who shapes our own perception of ourselves James.

    I’ve been waiting to see this film until I can see it with a friend that knew Mr. Milk. I wanted to know how “real” it felt. I suppose I’m worried that I will be fed a skewed, stereotyped view.

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