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Home #Hwoodtimes Queering at Home: Comic Con LGBTQ panels

Queering at Home: Comic Con LGBTQ panels

By Susan Hornik – Los Angeles Blade

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, hundreds of people missed the opportunity to engage in gender free cosplay at San Diego’s Comic Con. Nevertheless, the virtual Comic-Con gave attendees the rare opportunity to watch a plethora of lgbtq panels from their own home.

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One of the highlights during the four day confab was the “LGBTQ Characters on Television – What’s Next?,” a  Comic-Con@Home panel chat, moderated by Jim Halterman of TV Guide magazine, which featured Orphan Black’s Tatiana Maslany, and the dynamic duo on Star Trek: Discovery: Anthony Rapp and Wilson Cruz.

Cruz talked about how far television has come since the days when he played a gay teen in the beautifully written 1990s series, My So-Called Life. “People ask me all the time, when was the first time I saw myself on television? And I always say, ‘When I saw myself on television.’ … I understood how much I wanted and needed to see myself and my lived experience represented in some way.”

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These days, Cruz is thrilled to see a coming of age gay comedy like Hulu’s Love, Victor. “What’s exciting to me about where we are now is the fact that we have something like ‘Love, Victor,’ which takes Rickie (his So Called Life character) and expands on that story in a lot of ways.”

He added: “That show looks at a queer Puerto Rican boy and his family and how he navigates that. And it’s incredibly moving and fresh on my mind because I spent the whole night bingeing the entire series in a bucket of my own tears.”

Cruz would like to see more lgbtq representation working behind the scenes too. “We have to have more LGBTQ (people), especially trans people behind the camera – producers, directors, writers. That’s how we’re going to see more diversity.”

As much as fans would have loved to see Cruz and Rapp sing Rent songs, the two did discuss their onscreen romantic relationship during their Star Trek: Discovery panel.

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“Star Trek is, of course, fiction,” Rapp said. “It’s science-fiction. But, it’s always meant to imagine a future and world where people are valued for who they are, the content of their character, not the color of their skin, not their gender, not their age. In this explosive time it seems more resonant than ever. It’s not shining a light super vividly all the time. It’s just part of the fabric of it.”

He continued: “It really blends the personal/family nature of our show,” “Not just literal family like our coupledom, but the family of the ship. It really explores family in wonderful new ways. That’s one of the major things that gets developed in season 3 for sure.”

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Another interesting panel was “Horror is Queer,” which featured co-host of “Attack of the Queerwolf” podcast, Nay Bever, who talked about what defines the genre.

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“If queer or trans folks see themselves in something, then it’s ours, period,” Bever stated. “Any community who is marginalized and experiences the death rates and death threats that we do, we are 100% allowed to find ourselves wherever we can. If anyone has a problem with that, that tells us something about them… Horror is just a playground for the imagination and queer folks are so used to see things outside the little box they are given or outside these made up set of rules to behave by, it’s just such a wonderful combination.”

Child’s Play franchise creator Don Mancini, Hannibal creator Bryan Fuller, director of the Shudder documentary Sam Wineman, “Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” actor Lachlan Watson and moderator Jordan Crucchiola also participated.

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Valerie Milano is the well-connected Senior Editor and Entertainment Critic at TheHollywoodTimes.today, a website that aggregates showbiz news curated for, and written by, insiders of the entertainment industry. (@HwoodTimes @TheHollywood.Times) Milano, whose extraordinary talents for networking in the famously tight-clad enclave of Hollywood have placed her at the center of the industry’s top red carpets and events since 1984, heads daily operations of a uniquely accessible, yet carefully targeted publication. For years, Milano sat on the board and tour coordinator of the Television Critics Association’s press tours. She has written for Communications Daily, Discover Hollywood, Hollywood Today, Television International, and Video Age International, and contributed to countless other magazines and digests. Valerie works closely with the Human Rights Campaign as a distinguished Fed Club Council Member. She also works with GLSEN, GLAAD, Outfest, NCLR, LAMBDA Legal, and DAP Health, in addition to donating both time and finances to high-profile nonprofits. She has been a member of the Los Angeles Press Club for a couple of years and looks forward to the possibility of contributing to the future success of its endeavors. Milano’s passion for meeting people extends from Los Feliz to her favorite getaway, Palm Springs. There, she is a member of the Palm Springs Museum of Art and a prominent Old Las Palmas-area patron.