The Walking Dead Skips Season 3 Gay Storyline – Keeps Imperfect ZERO LGBT Character Rating

Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, writer, blogger and owner of A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Advocate, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, Raw Story, and The Huffington Post

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26 Responses

  1. I forgot about that couple in the prison. Sadly, this show that I love is skipping on some great opportunities, but then, the cast of the show has never been quite as big as the cast of the comics. For one thing, Herschel’s family going into the prison should still be bigger. You mentioned a lesbian storyline seems more possible, as an afterthought to appease LGBT viewers and titillate the straight male audience; they can actually do that by just taking another part of the comics’ prison storyline, the point where Carol starts trying to insert herself into Lori and Rick’s marriage after Lori rebutts an advance by Carol. The Carol on the show is much stronger, though, so I doubt they’d take her character in this direction now. Hopefully they won’t decide to backpedal and make her weaker and needier for no reason, just to toss in some awkward lesbian moments.

  2. Tim says:

    I’m not sure I’m willing to grant your premise that there are no LGBT characters on the show. As you said yourself, “sexuality is an aside, a trait like being left-handed or having blue eyes”. The simple fact that nobody is currently in an LGBT relationship, or running around screaming “I’m gay!” doesn’t seem all that conclusive to me. There are a number of characters for whom a sexual identity has never been defined. As you obviously enjoy the subject matter (having, I assume, consumed both the graphic novels and the TV show), I suggest you continue watching and try to ease up a bit on the trigger finger.

    • GDZ says:

      Totally agreed. Gay characters don’t need a lampshade hung on them, and for all we know the characters shown in heterosexual relationships could be bisexual. If you say it’s an invisible trait just like any other, why complain when they don’t specifically point it out?

  3. Kevin says:

    Well, even in the comic the fact that Dexter and Andrew were homosexual was downplayed being mentioned only once and subtly nodded to once or twice more. In the show Thomas took the place of Dexter in being the main antagonist of the group of prisoners and was killed early on enough that we were unable to learn all that much about him. On a side note the television programs writer are known to deviate from the main story line of the graphic novels in order to keep the audience guessing. I guess what I’m trying to say is that the sexual gender of the prisoners was irrelevant in the context of the show. The focus of the episode was more about perceiving them as a threat rather than looking into their personalities, past, and even sexual orientation.

  4. Brent says:

    I agree that I wish there more gay characters in The Walking Dead, but I’m not too broken up about losing Derek and Andrew. Their relationship is a tired “only gay in prison” cliche, and the characters themselves don’t have much of an impact.

    There is a positive gay relationship later on in the comics, when the group gets to the Alexandria Safe Zone. Aaron and Eric are a couple, and their sexuality is treated very much like you hope–it is just something that is. Their relationship is treated as matter of factly as any other. There is no big, shocking reveal, it never comes up as an issue, and it exists as a natural part of the landscape for everyone. And the best part is that they’re actual, well-rounded characters with personalities and stories. If the show skips over Eric and Aaron, who actually play a significant part in the narrative, then I’ll have a pretty big problem.

    And I echo your fear that they’ll throw in something between Andrea and Michonne. That would be a mistake.

    But hopefully Daryl does turn out to be a kickass gay redneck.

  5. Ian says:

    Does Frank Darabont even have anything to do with the day to day creative output of the show anymore? Thought that all rather dramatically went out the door before season 2.

  6. Darryl S says:

    What self respecting gay zombie would be found in those rags with that bad skin complexion wandering the countryside in Georgia?

  7. Gus Calvo says:

    I rather watch Eric and Aaron as Andrew and Dexter where just stereotypical and with no real connection not to mention that both were dispatched really quickly in the comics too, but that’s just me as a fan talking.

  8. Jordan says:

    This show is completely off the grid from the comic and sometimes, things just write themselves. I agree with others that I’m not too broken up over the two, it was a classic gay prison couple cliche, plus in the comic one really just used the other for personal gain so it’s not really my ideal image of a gay couple. I’m more excited for Eric and Aaron, they honestly love and protect each other and that’s the relationships I prefer.

    • Will Kohler says:

      Thats also art of my point. They’ve added characters so whats the prob with one that happens to be gay? Eric and Andrew are so far down the line in the story theres a very good chance that it will never get there. And season once had EVERY nationality and type of survivor represented except someone who was gay or lesbian. Its kinda annoying that we are so invisible. That you must at least admit.

  9. Pixie Truffle says:

    Will, I am a little disappointed by your remark concerning the socially acceptable nature of lesbianism. You’re effectively saying that inclusion of a lesbian story line would lack credibility in the LGBTQ community. Or to put it another way, we don’t have the same legitimacy as you guys. Nonsense. That your gender finds lesbianism acceptable is a fallacy. Across the board they might find a very narrow view of girl/girl interaction to be titillating, but they still treat the rest of us with violence and disrespect. The inclusion of a lesbian story line would have no less legitimacy. We have no less legitimacy than gay men. You’re willing to accept that the original story line is a prison cliché but whole sense of your piece is that unhelpful gay male stereotypes are preferable to a lesbian storyline. Seriously the continuous prejudice against lesbians from gay men makes me sad and angry.

    • Will Kohler says:

      Actually thats not what I am saying. I am saying that lesbian and bisexual have been used more and seen as more tasteful for in the media than the “ick factor” of two men. So in actuality is it MORE socially acceptable. It doesn’t lack credibility but in TWD in a Michonne/Andrea situation its an easy more acceptable way for them to do it than to introduce a male gay character.

  10. Matt says:

    They also skipped the murder of Rachel and Suzie Greene. They changed how Lori died. They changed how Shane died. This isn’t unusual when changing from a book to film/tv. But don’t take it as some sort of agenda against gay characters.
    And suppose they kept those characters in, and then killed them off? How many people would start bitching that they killed off the only gay characters in the show?
    It’s a tv show, not a master plan to railroad the LGBT community.

  11. Stentor says:

    I guess you can let your breath out now, they just introduced an openly gay male character tonight. Better late than never I suppose. I sincerely hope you apologize to Darabont, Hurd & the rest of the show-runner crew in your next article, but I won’t hold my breath.

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