¡Viva la Ricky!

Why Gay People Should Get Behind Ricky Martin’s Attempt To Reconquer America

Ricky Martin moved to New York with his partner and two sons this winter to get ready for his reemergence on the American scene, including a Glee appearance, MAC charity campaign with Nicki Minaj and a role as sexy revolutionary Che in the Broadway revival of Evita.

But while any other gay foreign superstars’ attempt to reconquer America would be received fabulously, gay people tend to be divided on the subject on Ricky Martin.

You’ll inevitably meet the queen who knew Ricky was so totally gay when “Livin’ La Vida Loca” blasted him to American fame in 1999—well, yeah, a lot of us had our suspicions.

So why did it take Ricky 11 years to come out of the damned closet? That’s a question he never quite addresses, but one gets the sense that’s he’s a very emotional, yet still private, dude in this new Advocate cover story.

The bon-bon shaker reflects on his memoir Me, released a few months after he came out via Twitter in 2010. Writes the Advocate:

Martin says he hasn’t read the book since it was published. “Exactly a week ago I had it open on my computer and I started reading a paragraph and had to stop,” he says, his voice cracking and his eyes tearing up. “I had to stop. It reminded me of the place I was when I was writing it.” Martin stops, regains his composure, and smiles.

Yes, perhaps he deprived LGBT youth of a gay superstar to idolize, but you can tell it was very difficult for him to be in the closet, and perhaps he was going on his own journey to reconcile his sexuality with his Latin Christian roots.

Let’s cut Ricky a break—he didn’t pull a Ken Mehlman on the gay community, after all—and embrace his return to the American scene.

He may have not been completely honest with us for all those years, but when he talks about playing a revolutionary loosely based on Che Guevara in Evita, you get the sense the Ricky is a sincere hombre.

“I get to feel many things. I can go from anger to love to uncertainty within 30 minutes of the show,” he says. “That’s amazing because that’s what my life has been about for the last three years—feeling. Not sabotaging any kind of emotions. Letting everything just come through me and verbalize it. It’s a very spiritual exercise that I’ll do every night.”

And, perhaps the next chapter of the buff conquistador’s campaign on America will be to infect televisions nationwide. Ryan Murphy certainly would aid and abet:

“He has such star power,” says Murphy [of Martin’s appearance on Glee]. “Even the straight boys in the cast were just gob-smacked by his confidence and said if they ever turned, it would be for Ricky Martin.”

Murphy says Martin was nervous about the acting but nailed every take. In fact, he was so taken with the star’s professionalism that he has spoken with Martin about starring in his own series. “If he’d relocate to L.A., I’d write a TV show for him in a heartbeat.”

What do you guys think a Ricky Martin-carried pilot would look like? We’re thinking a modern reboot of the classic I Love Lucy franchise—Martin could play Desi Arnez and perhaps, this time around, Lucy could be Luke, Martin’s gay life partner, instead.

¡Viva la Ricky Martin!

Photos via The Advocate