Today on the blog we have Mia Siegert, author of Jerkbait which comes out on May 10th. Add it to your Goodreads or pre-order now! Now I'm going to move aside and let you all read Mia's guest post! Be sure to share your thoughts in the comments! I'm sure Mia would appreciate it.
|Source - Showtime|
Queer as Folk and How It Influenced Me
In the horse show world (at least in America for the hunter/jumper circuit), the LGBTQ community is widely accepted. This is something that baffles some people as there’s a lot of big money, but I guess maybe that money comes with passion and care about animals.
It’s interesting how, in growing up in that world, I became attune to a lot of the prejudices against the community. Or at least aware. I think this can be attributed to a lot of the books I read and movies I watched, especially Queer as Folk.
Although it’s often been criticized as portraying one perspective of gay culture with the parties and the drugs and the wild sex, Queer as Folk was almost my awakening. I can see the show’s flaws without rose-tinted lenses, but the grittiness of it woke me up. The fearlessness. I saw how one show fearlessly approached things, like gay bashings, drug overdoses, affairs, questionable consent. It had everything, even if we wonder why we sympathize with Brian, the protagonist, as he goes through man after man, not learning names, screwing around, doing coke. We see how his past with his abusive father led to these decisions, how he had to be dominant, the definition of a control freak, confusing power with sex and sex with power. We cry as we witness how he was unable to realize that he was the victim of statutory rape as he boasts about sleeping with his gym teacher when he was only fourteen because, “he loved it.” We cringe as we see the cycle continuing as 29-year-old Brian falls in love with 17-year-old Justin and, after learning what Justin’s age actually was, justifies it as best as he could.
So in a weird way, Queer as Folk taught me about the LGBTQ community to the mainstream world instead of just the sheltered world with horses. It alerted me to the realness of hostility, the issues within. It led me to realize why we sympathize with characters we shouldn’t, what makes an anti-hero likeable, and why. And, certainly, without question, it changed the way I write.
Have you ever watched Queer as Folk? For those that aren't aware, this was a show in the UK and then it was turned into a series on Showtime in the U.S. I didn't watch it on Showtime, but I found it online afterwards and have watched about half of the series now (I own all seasons). I need to continue, but I'm definitely a fan!