Details Picks Clay Aiken and Thomas Beatie as Token Gays For “Power List”

We have it on good authority that despite Details‘ reputation for being six beers away from turning queer, editor Dan Peres is a raging homophobe, that those racist and offensive “Gay or…” pieces that he’s been forced to apologize for are composed laughing at us instead of with us and that the gays on staff are constantly subjected to Mickey O’Rourke-esque fag jokes.

But we like Details. Those “Gay or…” pieces are pretty funny and we enjoy Michael “I write about hot gay sex, but don’t actually do it” Chabon’s ongoing column in the magazine. Plus, carrying around a copy of Details in your back pocket is hanky code for “Likes to fuck metrosexuals/ likes to be fucked by metrosexuals”– we forget which side means which.

The inclusions of Clay Aiken and “pregnant man” Thomas Beatie in their annual “Power 40 List” is a perfect example of the queasy/happy dichotomy Details heaps upon the gay reader.

The Aiken piece sort of makes us uncomfortable, since essentially the message of the piece is “Clay Aiken sucks and you all are pathetic for caring about his gayness”, which of course is true, but something that doesn’t scream “power” so much as “power bottom”:

“When Ellen came out to a national magazine it was a pioneering move. When Lance Bass did it, well, he knew a good idea when he saw one. But when Clay Aiken announced “I’m gay” on the cover of People, it was proof that a has-been’s hunger for publicity is matched only by America’s insatiable fag-scination. Was this a bombshell five years after the former American Idol had his 15 minutes, two years after the National Enquirer reported that he’d solicited sex in gay chat rooms? “You’d have to say good job for something that has so little news value,” says Larry Gross, director of USC’s Annenberg School for Communication.”

On the other hand, Details‘ coverage of Thomas Beatie is surprising just for the fact that the magazine makes no bones about Beatie’s inclusion in a list of men:

“Forget the freakish photos, the media circus, and even the dude-with-pillow-under-his-shirt send-up on SNL. Thomas Beatie, legally speaking the world’s first pregnant man, forced us to glimpse what male motherhood is like—and it’s both beautiful and terrifying. Regardless of how history views the transgender man, a onetime Miss Hawaii Teen USA finalist, he sure left the Y-chromosome crew with lasting questions: Would you if you could? Do the joys of childbearing outweigh the drawbacks? Will they give me an epidural?”

Who would you like to see on a gay Power 40 list?

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  • Jenna

    “you all are pathetic for caring about his (Clay’s) gayness”

    They sure got this part right. Here at Queerty, you’ve been trashing him for 5 years. What is more pathetic than that?

  • Alexa

    Obviously, as a lesbian, I’m not the target audience for Details, but I don’t get it. I assume the list is supposed to be funny? Or ironic? And not just as dumb as it appears? Is this what passes for entertainment and humor among straight men nowadays?

  • Michael vdB

    I used to love Details while I was living my closeted life of straightness. Now I just pass it by. It is a magazine that was a hit during the height of the metrosexual age. Now that we have gotten past that label (well, hopefully) the magazine has no real relevance and instead focuses on things that I would expect to find in the Enquirer (with an extra bit of fashion sense). I hardly think they have the right to say anything about Clay when they have Tom Cruise on the cover.

  • Japhy Grant

    @Jenna: Hey! Queerty’s latest editor is new and doesn’t give a flying fuck about Clay Aiken. Clay makes us sad in a Michael Jackson sort of way.

  • fredo777

    Blah @ Details, in general.

  • D.B.

    I don’t understand “Details” — I would say 90% of the time it’s funny and smart. Definitely not deep reading, but a pleasant distraction. However, 10% of the time it’s just embarrassingly bad — so off base that you wonder if the editor had a stroke or something.

  • lostinmiami

    I don’t know why, but reading that Details was “hanky code for “Likes to fuck metrosexuals/ likes to be fucked by metrosexuals”
    coming from Japhy, who I’m more familiar with talking politics on AfterElton in a more serious tone made me choke on my Scotch. So unexpected, so humanizing. After I stopped coughing I couldn’t stop laughing.

  • Hank

    Blah Queerty!! Blah Details!!! and blah blah Japhy!!

    Everyone knows to have Clay Aiken’s name in their articles just to have hits.

    You are a bunch of publicity whores!!!

  • Qjersey

    off topic but, the best joke on Dancing with the stars last night:

    “what can you say about Lance Bass that hasn’t already been said about Clay Aiken”

  • Sean

    How about Shannon Minter instead of Thomas Beale. Here is a transgender man who is married with children but who is a lawyer in the fight for same-sex marriage? How about Tim Gill and his foundation? Instead we get someone who came out reluctantly and a transgender man who is just seeking publicity more than making a difference.

  • Liberace

    Why is my retort to a homophobic posting deleted, but “Lucifer” is allowed to spam in nearly every post?

Comments are closed.