alessnox: Aless Nox - A writer (Default)
I haven't heard it said, so I am going to just come out and say what I think the show runners are doing on the show Sherlock.

They are straightbaiting.
Okay, that is not a word, but I've heard people talk about queerbaiting as when people bandy about gay themes to draw viewers with no intention of ever getting the "possibly" gay couple together.

By straitbaiting, I mean that the writers fully intend for their characters to be gay, but are dressing them as straight to attract people who are disturbed or do not expect to see gay characters.

The Sherlock fandom is polarized by people who insist that the main characters are either Gay or Straight. The fight is not only over perception, but intention, to the point that people post things like...
"I swear, if they make them kiss/ not kiss I am never watching this show again.

These kind of arguments disgust me because not only is the poster trying to influence the writers to chose their point of view, but it also sounds like they are saying that to write gay or straight stories are wrong.

But back to the point.
I think that in the beginning Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss were simply hoping to make a one off adaptation of The private life of Sherlock Holmes where Sherlock was implied to be gay. The story changed when it became popular, and so many people laughed at the thought that a character as famous as Sherlock Holmes could be gay. I think that after that, it became a secret challenge to see how many overt gay stereotypes they could put in the show, and still have people call the characters straight. In my estimation, they have currently reached the level of performance art!

For example, in what other story can there be a character who turns down or ignores any come on initiated by a woman, dresses very well in shirts so tight and sheer that you can see his nipples, Lives with a man who he stares at constantly, gets jealous of, and laughs at all of his jokes, and yet have people strongly deny even the possibility that he could be gay.

Every new season sees the addition of some new blatant homosexual reference, from a wedding crowd discussing a 'meat dagger', to Moriarty deep throating a gun. It is as if the writers are saying, "How obvious do I have to be until you get it?"

The easiest way to see that this is happening, is to watch the show and imagine everything is exactly the same, except that Sherlock is female.

"Sherlock is a girl's name."

Then the love confession at the wedding and Sherlock walking out early are obviously the poigniant and sad acts that they were meant to be.

What the show seems to show is how far you must go to have people abandon their comfortable narratives. For most watchers, gay people are others. Sherlock Holmes is one of us. If you make Sherlock gay, you steal him away from us.

So as the show goes on, I find the response to it uglier and uglier. The writers may think that people will watch it and realize that gay people are okay, but all I see is the likelihood that when and if a reveal comes, most watchers will write the entire show off as the gay one that got it all wrong.

September 2017

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