And it today’s “Seriously?” file…
Muckraking homophobes and misleadingly titled grassroots group One Million Moms has selected the Hallmark Channel as its next target. The reason: a hint that the TV network might consider adding LGBTQ storylines to its TV movies.
The controversy began with hopeful remarks from CEO of Crown Media Family Networks Bill Abbott. “In terms of broadening out the demographic, it’s something we’re always thinking about,” Abbott told The Hollywood Reporter. “Always considering and we’ll continue to make the movies where the best scripts are delivered to us and what we think have the most potential.” Abbot made the comments in addressing a lack of diversity in Hallmark TV movie characters. Of 24 new telefilms debuting this season, only five have black leads. In the same interview, Abbott commented that the network would also consider films based around LGBTQ leads as well.
Now, according to the New York Daily News, the idea that Hallmark might produce more films without a straight, white lead (the horror!) has sent One Million Moms into a tailspin. “Please sign our petition asking Hallmark to do what is right and reject airing movies and commercials with LGBT content!” the group posted on its website. NBC reports that, at the time of this writing, the group had only collected 16,000 signatures. Fundamentalist Catholic website LifeSite also joined in the outrage, collecting 40,000 signatures under the auspice of preventing “promotion of homosexuality and transgenderism.”
Hallmark Holiday movies, though popular, also have a reputation for sentimentality and silly plotting, often revolving around implausible romance or magical events. In addition to enduring criticism for a lack of ethnic and sexual diversity, Hallmark has also come under fire for attempts at integrating Jewish characters into its movies.