*THIS POST CONTAINS POSSIBLE SPOILERS TO SEASON THREE OF THE WALKING DEAD AND SPOILERS OF THE GRAPHIC NOVEL.
PLEASE CONTINUE AT YOUR OWN RISK……
The Walking Dead, the zombie post-apocalyptic horror television series on AMC based on the comic book series of the same name by Robert Kirkman and developed for television by Frank Darabont just might have its first gay characters in Season 3 if Darabont and Kirkman stay true to the comic books original storyline.
But are they the kind of positive gay characters that the LGBT community wants and needs to be presented on television?
The show to this point has had a multitude of characters types, White, Black, Asian, Hispanic, and even added the red-hot redneck character of Daryl (played by Norman Reedus) but there has not up to this point been one character identifies as LGBT.
Kirkman, with a few exceptions has stayed true to the comic’s story-lines thus far in the television series with just a few exceptions. Sophia who in the comics is still alive and well, was turned into a walker and was subsequently shot and killed by Rick in the second season of the TV show. And Carol consumed by grief commits suicide. The biggest change from the comic’s storyline so far has been the surprise demise of Dale who in the comic after being bitten by a zombie has his leg amputated and sneaks into the forest to die alone, but is kidnapped by a group of cannibals, who yes you guessed it, eats him. But so far in Kirkman’s Walking Dead series world as in most of the most television world dramas LGBT people just don’t exist.
But that may change in Season 3 if Kirkman sticks to the comics Prison storyline but unfortunately it might not be for the better.
At the end of Season 2 of the Walking Dead the final shot was that of “The Prison” which leads into a new story arc in The Walking Dead comic series. In the comics the remaining members of Rick’s group, join up with four surviving inmates to fortify the prison against zombies. But danger comes from within because one of the inmate is a psychotic killer.
But his is where an old gay cliché’ come in with the possible introduction of two of the surviving inmates at The Prison, Andrew and Dexter.
From the Walking Dead Wiki
Dexter is a towering, physically intimidating African-American inmate who survived the outbreak trapped in The Prison cafeteria. He has a covert homosexual relationship with Andrew, but is in the relationship purely for sex. Dexter also knuws how take advantage of Andrew’s love for him..
Andrew is a convict who dealt in drugs but he survived the initial stages of the undead Apocalypse trapped inside The Prison cafeteria. A homosexual relationship between him and Dexter was hinted at, and explored later. And at one point there is a conversation between him and Axel (another inmate) concerning the availability of women now that the new group was among them and Dexter will turn heterosexual again
So is this the representation that the LGBT community will get in The Walking Dead? A cliche storyline of “gay prison sex/down low relationship” because there are no women around? Let’s hope not.
Now there is no guarantee that Kirkman will introduce this into the storyline. But if he does it will be a total insult to the LGBT Community. (Not to mention the Black community because, of course BOTH characters are Black) As of now considering the United Nations of characters that have been seen on The Walking Dead the fact there has not been one LGBT character on this show is beyond belief. Does Kirkman, Darabont and A&E not think that a LGBT person couldn’t survive a Zombie Apocalypse? Have they ever seen a pissed off Drag Queen fight? In this day and age that gay characters might be introduced as a “convict and his bitch” is just unconscionable and NOT a step in the right direction.
Invisibility on television is a major problem for the LGBT Community. And many of the LGBT characters who are on television are satirical stereotypes. Even on “Modern Family” which GLAAD lauds the two main gay characters are so stereotypically gay that they are really nothing more than a caricature.
For this to change television shows and movies must learn that a character being LGBT isn’t and doesn’t have to be THE storyline. A persons sexuality is an aside, a trait like being left-handed or having blue eyes and should be presented and treated as such. There are many a gay man out there that don’t wear cardigans and shop at Abercrombie & Fitch and can kick some serious ass if they needed to.
LGBT viewers of The Walking Dead and television in general deserve much better. Better characters, better representation, and better advocating for such by our organizations instead of applauding tired old stereotypes.
Hopefully Kirkman will see the light and deliver at least one positive character that just happens to be gay during the shows run. The Dexter/Andrew storyline is old, tired and really kind of offensive and who knows it may just be what bites the The Walking Dead in the ass.
At the end of last night Season 3 – Episode 1 première. Rick and the others did indeed find a group of prisoners hiding in the prison cafeteria mirroring the comic’s storyline. While these characters were not introduced by name, during the end credits one character was indeed listed in the credits as Andrew. But there was no listing for the character of Dexter.
On the bright side Daryl DID fend off Creepy Carol’s advances so there is still hope for an asskicking gay redneck character.
I can dream can’t I?