This time last year, One Life to Live had some of the most gay-inclusive story lines on television: A mass gay wedding, a front-burner story involving a gay couple (played by out actor Scott Evans and Brett Claywell), and a woman pretending to be a lesbian to improve her chances of being elected mayor.
What a difference a year makes, says former All My Children writer turned Deep Soap blogger Sara Bibel.
When the ABC soap’s gay romance coincided with a drop in the show’s ratings, the couple was quickly written off. “That does not explain why, out of the blue, last week’s episodes featured a plethora of borderline homophobic lines,” she writes.
It started with a story line about a pair of thugs who attempt to escape questioning by saying they are on their way to a PTA meeting. One of the men questioning them says, “OK, do you guys have kids together? Which one’s the mom? I think it’s you. Get the hell out of here.”
On last Wednesday’s episode, three of the show’s men strip at a bachelor party to Right Said Fred’s “I’m Too Sexy.” “Since when did this place become a gay bar, anyway?”the character of Todd asked upon arriving. He and his drunk friend then spent the rest of the scene pretending to be gay.
The following day, a shirtless Brody (Mark Lawson, pictured) opens the door to the cousin of his bride-to-be, having just spent the night with his friend John, who is also getting married. Upon opening the door, he says, “No, no, it’s not what you think. We’re getting married ... to Jessica and Natalie, not to each other.”
Bibel concludes, “Maybe I’m just being hyper politically correct. I realize that these are relatively innocuous remarks. Had I not watched three episodes in a block, I might not have noticed.
“But OLTL is a show that has won numerous awards from GLAAD. Headwriter Ron Carlivati is openly gay. I hold the show to a high standard on this issue.”