OMG… OMG! From the first utterance of those words at the beginning of Our Gay Wedding: The Musical, I knew that it was going to be just as awful as I was expecting it to be. Featuring the marriage of Ben and Nathan, I feared that showing something like this on television would reinforce stereotypes and not do our cause any good. Sadly I feel I have been proven correct.
It’s the reinforcement of stereotypes that is my biggest bug bear with the show. For so long there has been a struggle for acceptance, both socially and legally. Barriers have been broken down through those struggles. We have gone from being considered illegal to now being able to marry. There are now more positive and realistic representations of gay people in the public eye instead of the usual camp clichés of yesteryear and that has gone some way in changing the public’s perception of homosexuals. I see that as a massive step in the right direction.
I recently wrote about the battle for social equality now that we pretty much have full legal equality. I feel that battle is not going to be won with shows like this taking place. All this wedding will do is show gay people to be fabulous, camp stereotypes. That really isn’t the case. We are not all fabulous and most of us are not that camp.
While I will always defend someone’s right to live in the way they choose, I have to question why Ben and Nathan chose to conduct their wedding in this way. I would be interested to know whether they considered the bigger picture and how it could lead to gay people being perceived in a negative way.
My opinion is that Our Gay Wedding: The Musical has done us no favours whatsoever, but part of me also has to admire Ben and Nathan. A lot of hard work and effort clearly went into the show. To write, produce and co-ordinate something like this would take meticulous planning and I can only applaud the happy couple on that front. I also thought it was a good call to have a section on gay history and the journey to where we are now. However, despite those positives, the show really wasn’t my thing. It made me cringe. I’m already receiving messages from straight people I know saying how fabulous it was and how the now married couple are so cute, as if objects rather than people.
I do wish Ben and Nathan all the happiness in the world, though. In the same way that I wish every gay couple getting married all the happiness they deserve. As the happy couple put it themselves, love is everyone. It’s a sentiment I entirely agree with.
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Opinions expressed in this article may not reflect those of THEGAYUK, its management or editorial teams. If you'd like to comment or write a comment, opinion or blog piece, please click here.