June 2, 2023 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Television: The Dull Gays: Desperate Housewives

Comedian Sandra Tsing Loh has been talking about her desire to upgrade her beloved but slightly embarrassing neighborhood in Van Nuys by “bringing the gays.” Loh has an ongoing radio broadcast on KPCC and jokes about how much better things would look if only the gays took an interest. Funnily enough, “the gays” have moved into Wisteria Lane to rather dull effect.

When first “the gays” took up residence amid the Desperate Housewives it looked as though the show might go in an interesting direction. Marc Cherry was being applauded for his bravery in introducing a “normal” couple to the family night program. Kevin Rahm and Tuc Watkins play the couple.

Watkins told USA Today, “Marc should be applauded for creating gay characters who aren’t issue-oriented. A lot of the time, gay characters are known through issues — coming out or health problems. There are a few cliché gay jokes on Desperate Housewives. But Bob and Lee aren’t stereotypical. They have horrible taste. They have a sense of humor. They’re a little mean. They’re certainly not PC.”

So far it doesn’t look like any church groups are calling up ABC and protesting “the gays” on a prime time television show (never mind the adultery, teen pregnancy, statutory rape, drug addiction, murder, lying, cheating, and stealing that goes on every five seconds).

The sad truth is, the “gays” are just too normal, too perfect to be believed. Just because they had bad taste with a ghastly fountain sculpture they wanted in their backyard doesn’t mean they’re working hard to break stereotypes or anything. While it’s a miracle they aren’t “issue-oriented,” it would be far more entertaining if they were as neurotic and twisted as the rest of the cast. Make one murderously jealous of the other; make one a halftime pretend-straight man leading a double life in a mirror town like Wisteria Lane. Make one a serial killer! Oh, I got it! One had an affair with a closeted politician!

Or maybe Bree’s son, himself an out gay teen, could end up having an affair with one of them? I’m guessing on ABC (aka Disney) that would never fly. So we’re stuck with the “dull gays” who will hold their place until the adequately dysfunctional ones arrive. Progress moves at a snail’s pace.

Now that the writers have gone on strike, it might be a good time for them to rethink the storyline. Surely having some thinking time isn’t crossing the picket line, and just imagine all that they’d accomplish without even putting pen to paper.

There are many resources at their disposal to think up something really juicy for the gay couple to become entangled in. Most of us boring straight people watch that show to feel superior that our messed-up lives are nothing compared to these poor housewives. All I’m saying is that the gay housewife be treated with equal disdain. I don’t think that’s too much to ask.

This complaint notwithstanding, Desperate Housewives has gotten a lot better lately. Gabby is back to her own conniving self, Bree has talked her daughter into giving her the baby instead of raising it on her own, Edie is plotting against Carlos, and Susan is pregnant with Mike’s baby. Just another Sunday night on Wisteria Lane.

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