Shonda talked to the NY Post about Gay Marriage & TV!
One place gay marriage isn’t up for debate: TV
Why gay marriage is no longer taboo on network TV
Shonda Rhimes, creator of “Grey’s Anatomy” and “Scandal,” doesn’t know for a fact that writing gay characters on her popular ABC series has made gay life more acceptable to mainstream America.
But she certainly hopes so.
While other series have their token Asian, black and gay characters, Rhimes has waged a one-woman campaign for tolerance, for creating a “world that looks like the one I live in.” And that includes Asians, African-Americans and gay characters.
“I felt everybody should be represented on television,” Rhimes told The Post.
The first gay marriage she wrote, in 2011, occurred between two women, Dr. Callie Torres (Sara Ramirez) and Dr. Arizona Robbins (Jessica Capshaw), on “Grey’s Anatomy.” In fact, Rhimes showed how Callie went from being in a relationship with a man to realizing she was bisexual.
After the wedding, Rhimes received mail from fans of the show that said the storyline gave them the courage to come out to a parent. “Somebody wrote, ‘My parents finally understand what’s going on with me,’” she says. “It’s amazing the reach television has. Especially with a character like Callie.
“They took the journey with her and learned she liked women.”
On Rhimes’ latest drama, the spicy, intrigue-laden “Scandal,” she features two male characters who are married — the sixtyish Chief of Staff, Cyrus Beene (Jeff Perry) and a younger reporter, James Novak (Dan Bucatinsky). “It’s not a thing. We’re not making a massive statement,” she says. “ Here’s a three-dimensional character who happens to be gay.”
Rhimes’ commitment to diversity has received the full support of Disney, which owns ABC. Never did she receive a panicked phone call from an executive, or a note demanding script changes.
“No one ever said, ‘You can’t do that.’ We really didn’t have any problems,” she says. Granted, she says, “It’s network television. It’s not like I can show a bunch of stuff.” All in all, she says, “It’s been lovely.”
On “Scandal,” there will be an upcoming love scene between the two men, in episodes “19 or 20,” she says. And there was one scene where the two men had to get completely naked because Cyrus thought James was wearing a wire. But no one had a stroke.
On “Grey’s Anatomy,” people at the show were more interested in what kind of wedding dresses Callie and Arizona would be wearing, rather what might transpire on the wedding night.
When it comes to sex, Rhimes says she’s had more resistance to the interracial romance between the lead “Scandal” characters Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) and President Fitzgerald Grant (Tony Goldwyn). About that, Rhimes says, “I have no comment.”
The Supreme Court has already debated that issue.
I appreciate Shonda because she is so determined to have her shows look like the world we live in!
xoxo !Rolling On! xoxo GreysRcksMyWorld
‘Scandal’ actresses, Darby Stanchfield and Bellamy Young, would like to answer your questions about the show on it’s podcast with Betsy Beers!
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