Tuesday, February 25

AK Soufflé: God bless queer TV

- July 18, 2017


God bless Auntie, by which I mean the Beeb, or should I be being more respectful? What I am getting at is the flurry of queer telly that is currently filling our screens. God bless Channel 4 too, who seem to be taking a bit of a break from the normal pap diet of fly on the wall, car crash programming that seems to be their stock in trade for the most part, if it were not for Countdown I might never tune in.

The 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality was bound to create a lot of attention and it is great to see so much coverage being given to the subject and the issues that surround it. I was heartened also to see that London Pride was actually given coverage in the main news bulletins, although rather a lot of emphasis was put on the enormous risks involved and the huge turnout of police required to ensure safety. Still, it was there to be seen and not sidelined as it has been for so many years.

I’m enjoying watching much of the TV programming and in particular the Channel 4 programme Epidemic: When Britain Fought Aids on the way the UK dealt with the rise of AIDS and HIV. Hats off to the then Minister for Health Norman Fowler who comes across very well in the programme which highlights the fact that the then Prime Minister, a certain Thatcher woman, could hardly bring herself to say the words gay or homosexual let alone acknowledge that the country was facing a massive crisis.

It was there to be seen and not sidelined as it has been for years

Less convincing was the programme Britain’s Great Gay Buildings, informative in part but rather silly too, these were only great gay buildings by being the associated locations to major gay events, all except perhaps Heaven, that certainly seemed to ring true.

Fifty Shades of Gay worked well and handing it over to Rupert Everett was an inspired idea, Everett is rather fearless in voicing his own views rather than spouting received information. I didn’t agree with everything he said or thinks but I admired his approach and his honesty.

There’s plenty more to come with, one has to hope, a balance of fun and the inevitable sad stories. If anything these seasons will bring our world to the attention of the non-gay world and perhaps one day we can see a world when being gay is not worth mentioning, where the word equality needs not be used and that we live in harmony side by side, not matter how we express our sexuality.

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