Wednesday, October 26, 2016

DC TV & It's LGBT Characters

Actually inspired by a Tumblr post that came up in my timeline yesterday, I thought I'd have a bit of a look at the current LGBT characters on the DC shows in question.

1: Legends Of Tomorrow (CW/Sky1)

Sara Lance (Caity Lotz) is the best thing about this fun and chaotic show and with Rip Hunter (Arthur Darvill) currently not in the frame, the current season made the logical decision to make Sara the leader of the ragtag crew on the Waverider (with added Citizen Steel and Vixen). What I love about Sara is that the show and parent series, Arrow has never defined her character by her bisexuality but neither have they shied away from it. In four years and two connected shows, we've seen Sara in significant relationships with both Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) and Nyssa Al Ghul (Katrina Law) as well as a near relationship with Leonard Snart (Wentworth Miller) and a couple of onscreen dalliances with the female guest stars, including a closeted 1950's nurse, the women of Salem and the Queen of France. To say Sara Lance is the best LGBT character on television might be an overstatement but she's certainly up there, that cannot be denied.

2: Arrow (CW/Sky1)

Arrow has been something of a divisive series since it's third season and the producers incessant pandering to the Olicity fanbase but between dull flashbacks and some extremely hit and miss minor and major villains, it's had some great moments. Sara's death in the third season and resurrection and departure in the fourth season could've limited Nyssa's use in the show but it seemed to have the opposite effect and instead, the show successfully fleshed out the character even more (let's pretend that marriage thing with Oliver didn't happen, yeah?). Then there was that nice little episode in the fourth season that guest starred John Constantine (Matt Ryan) but mostly importantly since last season, we've had the delightful Curtis Holt (Echo Kellum), who this season has become part of Oliver's new crew and has donned the mantle of Mr Terrific. Despite some of this show problems, Curtis is one of the best things to have happened to it and I'm glad he has a bigger role this year.

3: Gotham (FOX/Channel 5)

Let's get the elephant out of the room first of all, shall we? Back in the first season, Gotham had possibly the best gay character on this show with Detective Renee Montoya (Victoria Cartegena) and the show wasted her completely with a lifelessly dull relationship with Barbara Kean (Erin Richards) and then gave her an off screen exit where she's never been mentioned since. Then there's Barbara herself who despite being more entertaining as a sociopath than she ever was as James Gordon's (Benjamin McKenzie) fiancee feels like every regressive bisexual trope known to man. Her 'relationship' with Tabitha Galavan (Jessica Lucas) feels like it's little more than a straight guy's fantasy but it seems that while their relationship may continue to be just there in the background, things could be heating up elsewhere. Recent episodes have seen a growing closeness between rogue gallery members Oswald Cobblepot (Robin Lord Taylor) and Edward Nygma (Cory Michael Smith), especially as they now work together and it's been revealed that Oswald harbours romantic feelings for Edward. Now whether or not, Edward feels the same for Oswald is anyone's guess but it's certainly an interesting development in the series.

4: Supergirl (CW/Sky1)

The first season of this wonderful show didn't exactly feature anything LGBT wise, but it certainly felt inclusive as a series. However this season, it definitely seems like things are going to change here. First of all, the third episode of the second season introduced Detective Maggie Sawyer (Floriana Lima) and let's just say, the chemistry between her and series regular, Alex Danvers (Chyler Leigh) made itself rather apparent in their first interactions. Out of all the previous established regular characters to explore their sexuality, Alex actually makes the most sense to be honest and I'm glad that it appears the show is going to go there with her and Maggie. Of course, you could also argue that the show could've gone there with Kara/Supergirl (Melissa Benoist) and Lena Luthor (Katie McGrath) but their dynamic is definitely more akin to Clark and Lex's from the first few seasons of Smallville and it's more likely that Kara will be paired with Mon El (Chris Woods) at a later time in the season, which I'm not opposed to.

5: The Flash (CW/Sky1)

Now I love The Flash to bits. It's a brilliant series, even overtaking Arrow at this point and it's certainly treated us to a slew of great characters since it's 2014 launch but on the LGBT front, it's a little bit of a mixed bag. Not so much that the characters but more that we've barely seen much of them to be honest. Look at Captain Singh (Patrick Sabongui). Aside from having a husband we've met once and being Barry and Joe's boss, he still feels rather under cooked as a character. We've had one off characters with more scope to them than Singh but on the other hand, despite only popping up in three episodes so far, the show has better utilised Hartley Rathaway/Pied Piper (Andy Mientus) and I'm hoping at some point this season we get to find out if the events of Flashpoint have changed his character for the better or worse.

Overall, the current DC television universe does seem to have a good and somewhat depiction of LGBT characters. It could be better in some places but it's still really nice to see that these shows are willing to add these characters into the mix and do significantly interesting things with them for the most part.

No comments: