Sunday, April 1, 2012

April 2012

No doubt by now, Poppets, you have heard about LOGO’s programming change. Everyone seems to have weighed in, and I’m not going to be the exception. Before I start, though, in case you haven’t heard, back in February, LOGO television announced that it was moving away from LGBTQ-centric programming. Are you caught up? Good. Here we go.

The official press release reads:

In the 6 years since Logo launched, there has been a seismic shift in culture and the network’s new programming slate reflects that. From the push for marriage equality, to the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and even the mass appeal of broadcast TV shows like “Modern Family” all signal a significant movement in today’s culture where “out” characters are celebrated for their success and values and the majority of gays and lesbians define themselves by multi-dimensional notions other than purely on their sexual orientation.

“Culturally, we’re past the tipping point. For gays and lesbians, it’s part of who they are, but they don’t lead with it, because many are leading fully integrated, mainstream lives,” said Lisa Sherman, Executive Vice President of Logo. “Our goal at Logo has always been to honestly reflect our viewers’ lives. We’re now reinforcing our commitment to them with programming that truly mirrors how many of them are living and want to be entertained today.” (

Ummm….really? Okay. Let’s break it down…

From the push for marriage equality…” – which we still do not have, nor are we anywhere close to having it nationwide. Lovely.

“…to the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’…” – which is only half the battle while DOMA is still in effect. Lovely.

“…the mass appeal of broadcast TV shows…”- such as Billy Crystal’s character, Jody, in the series Soap, which ran from 1977-1981. They’re relying on a statement that could’ve been made in 1978. Lovely.

“…because many are leading fully integrated, mainstream lives,” – and good for them. Seriously. Said without bitterness, sarcasm, or malice. But many, many more of us are still required to be closeted, to hide.

“Our goal at Logo has always been to honestly reflect our viewers’ lives.” – because so many of us are child beauty pageant stars (Eden’s World), family members of mob bosses (Wiseguys), or want to “test the creative talents of dog owners and their canine companions.” (Design My Dog) No, I’m not making that last one up. Someone, please, tell me what it even means.

Not a single new show has an LGBTQ character as the lead of the focus. Instead, we are the quirky, fabulous best friend/sidekick. That stereotype isn’t okay in mainstream programming. Now, LOGO is asking us to be okay with being relegated there on our own station.

I get that many of us don’t “lead with” our orientation. That doesn’t mean we want to be invisible or a subplot. There is still a place for us to be the leads, the focus, more than a sidekick. We can get all the other stuff on Bravo, TLC, ABC, Lifetime – the list goes on and on. Why hand it to us here, on LOGO, too?

Look, I also get that business run on financial decisions. Reality t.v. is all the rage. If LOGO wants to/needs to incorporate this kind of programming into their schedule for that reason, I really do understand. Business is business. But LOGO, after six years of loyalty and keeping you in business, please, don’t add insult to injury by pretending these changes are about us. Attract your straight audiences; make your money. Even tell yourself whatever lies you need to. Just stop trying to feed them to us.

Until next month, Poppets, take care of you.

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