OP-ED: Couples of Color Scarce in Formulaic Gay Cinema

Gay Voices (The Huffington Post)
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February 1, 2013
Issues: 

During my rare free time I love to watch movies. Usually I go through a period of watching a particular genre, then I move on to another. This past summer I became highly intrigued by LGBT cinema, particularly LGBT films focused on gay men. The films I was watching were mainly on Netflix. Some of the films I watched were dramas, and some were comedies with a lot of romance, but all were gay-themed. As I moved through them, I noticed a common formula, especially in gay romantic comedies: An average-looking (but attractive in an adorable way) white male becomes interested in a hotter, confident and charming white male. The movie's plot is typically built around the funny obstacles, lies and deceptions that arise when these two archetypes date or become close friends, and that eventually brings them together in the end. This formula, or some variation on it, could be found in literally every gay-themed movie I watched. I sought out different types of gay-themed cinema, but all the films I came across utilized that common formula. It started to bother me that there were rarely black or Latino males in prevalent roles, and Asian-American males were almost nonexistent in these films. A lesbian or transgender character might be added to the mix in a smaller role, but rarely with depth.