There’s the sexy Rolling Stone photo and profile. The cover of New York and its documenting of all his achievements. The lauding piece in USA Today. Sure, they’re all tied to his Emmy hosting gig this month, but more significant than any article mentioning how Neil Patrick Harris operates (so successfully) in a post-gay landscape is the fact that there are so many articles celebrating Neil Patrick Harris as a man who happens to be gay.
He’s a talented actor and comedian. Likable. Enjoys the perks of fame without complaining. Who just happens to sleep with dudes. It’s okay for newspapers and magazines to mention this about Harris now, only because he came out. And you can’t write a profile of NPH without mentioning his sexuality, and how he came out. And generally, we’d find this sort of thing annoying: Aren’t we thoroughly over the fact that Harris is gay?
Yes, of course we are. But also, he’s about the best thing going when it comes to gay men in Hollywood. And while he doesn’t care much to make his sexuality the focal point in any conversation about his career, Harris doesn’t shy away from that part of his life, either. The Howard Stern Show, of course, being the most obvious example.
So while no profile of, say, Ben Stiller will ever mention when he “came out” as straight, and how hard that is to do in Hollywood, we’ve got no problem with the continual regurgitation of Harris’ coming out story. Particularly because it involves, uh, Ben Stiller: