"If the representations in question utilize humor, are queer people in on the joke or are they the joke?" This question is one I've asked myself several times in the past year or so with the increase in gay characters in TV sitcoms, movies etc and this is why...
In this video, (Embedding was disabled by used, sorry!) we view various clips of fairly recent TV sitcoms like Modern Family, Will and Grace, Mean Girls etc where we see gay men as being portrayed as overly feminine. I've met gay men and women and I know not all gay men are overly feminine. So my question is always are they ridiculing gays? In one of the articles assigned for this week, we says lesbians are portrayed as being butch and masculine but not every lesbian is acts like that. After all these isn't a rubric or certain standards to meet in order to identify as lesbian or gay! In my opinion having these stereotypical portrayals of homosexuals is actually taking a step back from the improvements we've seen in media portrayal. At the end of the day, we are just internalizing these damaging stereotypes.
One of the reading discusses how the queer community is being targeted by marketing which is something we discussed early on in the semester when we read Palladino "Where Did Teenagers Come from". In this article Palladino talks about how marketers were targeting teens because of how lucrative that group of people was, the same is true with the queer community. In the reading this is described as being a double edge sword which I completely agree with. As in with teenagers, lower/ middle class queers might feel marginalized by not being financially able to purchase what is being marketed towards them.
The above add by JCP, caused controversy when it was published but why should it? I see nothing wrong with the add, do you?
As a side note I just want to say that by re representing these negative stereotypes and thus internalizing them we are pushing teens to be afraid of "coming out" and possibly pushing them into depression, self hate/mutilation and even suicide. Although it homosexuality is becoming more common, we still must realize how much of a judgemental society we are as a whole and how damaging that can be to not only our youth, but to all humans.