Los Angeles Times journo Tom O’Neil sure ain’t happy with GLAAD.
O’Neil wrote last week that the homo media watchdog should revoke the award it bestowed upon As The World Turns for the soap’s gay teenage love story. Though certainly ground breaking, that story’s caused a bit of protest among gay fans, who have urged producers and writers to lift a ban on the character’s sex lives. The teens, Luke (Van Hansis) and Noah (Jake Silbermann), kissed in early 2007, but a spokesperson from Proctor & Gamble, which produces the show, says they nixed new scenes “”because of some of the feedback that we’ve gotten, and because of what we thought was best for the show creatively”.
O’Neil’s infuriated and wants GLAAD to take action against its previous action:
Not only should GLAAD be publicly denounced for giving an award to As the World Turns, but it should be pressured to rescind the prize.
It’s an outrage that an organization devoted to battling gay discrimination in the media would honor a TV show that blatantly and notoriously discriminates against gay romance.
GLAAD’s Damon Romine defended the award, saying the show definitely broke new ground and perhaps has laid the groundwork for more progressive arcs on television:
While there may be some compromises made about what’s being shown, the story line is very romantic. They were the first gay couple on daytime TV ever to share a kiss, so that was pretty monumental.
…I’m looking at this from a historical background and my 20 years of working with daytime, how long it’s taken to get to this point and, while maybe concessions are being made, I’m hoping that, as the audience grows to accept the story being told now, that we’ll reach the point where a relationship between two men can be seen in an authentic way like other romantic characters. It’s clear that the writers and directors are doing the best they can to tell this gay love story within whatever boundaries they’ve been given.
O’Neil goes on to again accuse GLAAD of bowing to corporate discrimination, as well as focusing too much energy on grabbing headlines than actual equality. It’s way harsh. And kind of real, although we can understand where GLAAD’s coming from, which surprises us.