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 AfterElton.com's 2009 Visibility Awards!

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PostSubject: AfterElton.com's 2009 Visibility Awards!   21.12.09 3:48

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What?! It’s not enough that we spent the whole year providing you with insightful news and analysis on gay and bisexual entertainment – now we have to pick which 2009 projects we think best represented gay and bisexual men?!

Sorry, we’re getting a little Grinch-y around here come year-end.

But the fact is, gay and bisexual entertainment-related news is inexorably linked with the issue of visibility. If you know anything at all about the history of such entertainment, you know that it’s almost always been “controversial.” As passionate as the creators of these projects have always been, there’s been a similarly strong counter-pressure to keep these themes hidden or under wraps.

As a result, for a website like ours, covering the “news” of these projects inevitably becomes a question of championing the ones of quality (and giving the hook to those who don’t measure up, or that reflect poorly on our community).

In short, the AfterElton.com Visibility Awards are partly about quality – think of them as our Best of the Year awards – but they’re also about highlighting those moments where someone or something “gay” had a well-earned moment in the entertainment spotlight, and we think they did the rest of our community proud.

(Incidentally, we’re well aware that this has ended up pretty much being mostly the White Person’s Visibility Awards, but we’d like to believe that that’s a function of society’s continuing institutional racism, not any racial insensitivity on our part. In short, please don’t shoot the messenger!)


If you don’t watch One Life to Live, you’re no doubt snickering that we chose three soap opera actors and their head writer as our Men of the Year. But if you’ve been watching One Life to Live’s remarkable gay love triangle as it’s played out all year on this long-running ABC soap, you know we absolutely made the right choice.

Sure, it’s a soap, but it’s also some of the best, most daring writing and acting on television, soap opera or not.

Without a doubt, last year’s groundbreaking gay teen storyline on As the World Turns opened the door for this storyline, but One Life to Live has since gone places that that other, notoriously tentative soap never dreamed.

Every day, we’re drawn deeper into the complicated and passionate love that Officer Fish shares with his old college flame Kyle Lewis – to the dismay of Kyle’s politically active ex, Nick Chavez. The show has been both politically pointed, with all the positive characters arguing in favor of same-sex marriage, and passionately sexual, with Kyle and Fish (or “Kish”) getting at least as intimate as every other good-looking character on a daytime drama.

And it when it comes to visibility, it matters to us that three of the four men we’ve named – Evans, Rodriguez, and Carlivati – are openly gay, and that the fourth, Claywell, has been so supportive of the show and its attitudes.

Honorable Mention: True, it was Adam Lambert’s year – so much so that we couldn’t quite bring ourselves to dedicate still more pixels to his incredible rise (but we’re not ignoring him completely, as you’ll see below). And let’s not forget Dustin Lance Black’s two monumental achievements of 2009: his award-winning screenplay for Milk, and his touching Oscar acceptance speech for the script where he told the entire world what he thought Harvey Milk would have wanted him to say: “to all of the gay and lesbian kids out there tonight who have been told that they are less than by their churches, by the government or by their families, that you are beautiful, wonderful creatures of value.”

Dishonorable Mention: Yes, yes, we’re all completely sick of Perez Hilton, but the slime-dwelling attention-whore sank even deeper into the muck this year, for actions that are best left un-repeated here. But suffice to say that having ol’ straw-for-brains on Larry King to debate same-sex marriage is surely a new media low.



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PostSubject: Re: AfterElton.com's 2009 Visibility Awards!   21.12.09 4:56

Here's the "see below" text mentioned:

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Honorable Mention: How much credit do the producers of American Idol get for the presence of Adam Lambert on their show? That’s debatable, but it’s simply a fact that the show is responsible for his explosion onto the musical scene. We also have to give Idol some of the credit for the very close (and groundbreaking) friendship that developed between Lambert and Kris Allen, a conservative (but not homo-hating) Christian.

I don't see how Idol gets credit for Kradam. Kradam should take full credit!
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