Christine Woods has just joined a new group: When her Agent Janis Hawk on ABC's rookie drama FlashForward came out, she instantly became associated with a small but notable league of gay characters on prime-time TV. And while other newbies in the group — like Chris Colfer's Kurt Hummel on Fox's Glee — spend time in high school halls and singing groups, Woods has a story line that almost requires a road map.
On FlashForward, her Agent Hawk is part of a Los Angeles-based FBI squad investigating the causes and culprits behind what led the entire world to simultaneously black out for two minutes and 17 seconds and catch a glimpse of what happens in that same amount of time six months into their future. And Hawk's flash forward is a gem: The single lesbian is pregnant.

Woods, who is playing gay for the first time in her career, paused to discuss her character (who treated LGBT fans to not one but three on-screen smooches during a recent episode), U-Hauls, and what ABC is doing right when it comes to writing gay characters. For those who haven’t seen FlashForward yet, how would you describe your character?
Christine Woods: I would describe her as very intelligent, very strong; I mean, she's in a career that's predominantly male but she holds her own. She does the right thing, she's honorable and honest and she's all about her job.

In episode 3, you're questioning a Nazi who has knowledge of what caused the blackouts and he basically outs you based on a thumb ring.
He does. [Laughs] It's funny because they didn't want that scene to be Janis's official outing in the show; they just wanted to drop the clue. And I'm thinking to myself that it's pretty obvious. I know that's just a clue, but people are going to pick up on it and they're going to blog about that kind of stuff. The whole idea is that I would stare at him blankly and try not to give anything away even though it's pretty freaking obvious.

What did you think of that in terms of how characters are outed on TV?

The way I made it seem is that Janis is such a workaholic and she's obsessed with her job. I know some women in law enforcement and they say, "Well, yeah, everybody tries to make jokes about the fact that we're gay because we're tough broads." So in my mind, Janis has had to deal with that several times, and so she kind of just rolls her eyes and deals with it. But I think it's something that women in predominantly male fields have to just deal with because we challenge our male counterparts in terms of sexuality and that kind of thing. So I just blew it off as something that she has to deal with constantly.

Tags: television