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Roc Has a Gay Uncle

Gayest Episode Ever

Release Date: 07/08/2020

Frasier Dates a Gay Guy show art Frasier Dates a Gay Guy

Gayest Episode Ever

“The Doctor Is Out” (September 30, 2003) Three episodes into its final season, the gay subtext of Frasier comes to a climax, so to speak, when a dashing opera director played by Patrick Stewart becomes infatuated with Dr. Crane — and Frasier goes along with it about as far as a confirmed hetero can. This is our final episode of the year! We did so many episodes! Isn’t it amazing what you can do when sex and socializing are completely off the table? AUGH! Listen to our previous Frasier episodes: (our first episode ever!) and .   And special thanks to Matt Baume whose pointed out...

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Will & Jack Embrace Every Gay Stereotype show art Will & Jack Embrace Every Gay Stereotype

Gayest Episode Ever

“Fagmalion, Part Two: Attack of the Clones” (January 30, 2003) — We’re covering part two of a four-part Will & Grace arc, but it actually make sense in that this itself is part two of two-part crossover with Kyle Getz and Mike Johnson from the podcast Gayish, which is all about the stereotypes that surround gay identity. Is this Will & Grace a carnival of gay horrors? Yes, but that doesn’t mean this show isn’t worth examining.

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A.C. Slater Was Gay for Zack Morris… for Five Seconds show art A.C. Slater Was Gay for Zack Morris… for Five Seconds

Gayest Episode Ever

“The Zack Tapes” (December 2, 1989) What’s gay about Saved By the Bell, aside from Slater’s singlets and Tori’s leather jacket? Well, there is one episode that very briefly demonstrated that same-sex attraction was a thing — on Saturday morning, no less. It’s all he more surprising because the new Saved By the Bell manages to make amends for all the things the original series did wrong except feature any kind of same-sex love. And yes, we’re doing this episode because we really dug the reboot anyway. Watch the little-seen original pilot for Good Morning, Miss Bliss , and watch...

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The Golden Girls Meet a Trans Man show art The Golden Girls Meet a Trans Man

Gayest Episode Ever

“Strange Bedfellows” (November 7, 1987) The Golden Girls is beloved by many in the queer community, and for good reason, but the series is not batting a thousand when it comes to LGBT representation. This third season episode features a character who may just be the first trans man character on American TV. It’s… not great, but not wholly a disaster, and writer is here to offer the perspective of a GG newbie. Listen to our previous Golden Girls episodes: Subscribe to Henry’s newsletter, . Read Henry’s NewNowNext . And is the Mary Ann Doane article Henry mentions. If you...

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ALF Never Did a Gay Episode show art ALF Never Did a Gay Episode

Gayest Episode Ever

“We Are Family” (May 2, 1988) Finally, at long last, ALF! This is the first in a new series where Drew and Glen discuss shows that never did a gay episode. “But wait, Drew and Glen! You have done episodes that weren’t explicitly gay before,” you may be saying. This is true, but at the very least we could pretend that the writer maybe-kinda-sorta had some gay metaphor in mind. This new series is for all the shows that never even treaded that far, but we think there’s something to talk about anyway. In this episode, ALF contemplates coming out as an alien, even if going public might...

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Spin City Stumps for Same-Sex Marriage show art Spin City Stumps for Same-Sex Marriage

Gayest Episode Ever

“Grand Illusion” (October 29, 1996) — The first LGBT-themed episode from Spin City makes the odd decision to focus not on the out gay character, Michael Boatman’s Carter Heywood, but instead on Connie Britton’s Nikki. Drew thinks is lame.

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Jennifer Slept Here Is a Little Gay Boy’s Fantasy show art Jennifer Slept Here Is a Little Gay Boy’s Fantasy

Gayest Episode Ever

“Jennifer: The Movie” (October 29, 1983), Jennifer Slept Here — We’re celebrating both Halloween and week two of our celebration of Ann Jillian with an episode about how the 1983 NBC series Jennifer Slept Here is both so very weird and also a little gay boy’s fantasy.

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It’s a Living Waits on a Trans Woman show art It’s a Living Waits on a Trans Woman

Gayest Episode Ever

“Gender Gap” (January 11, 1986), It’s a Living — Heads up: Initially, at least, Drew thought the episode being discussed was more transphobic that most, but special guest Ashley Lauren Rogers pointed out the ways the one trans episode of It’s a Living isn't a total wash — and since Ashley happens to be the host of the Is It Transphobic? podcast, that counts for something.

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Penelope Alvarez Is the Mother of a Queer Teenager show art Penelope Alvarez Is the Mother of a Queer Teenager

Gayest Episode Ever

One Day at a Time, “Pride and Prejudice” (January 6, 2017) — The new One Day at a Time gets major points for focusing on a Latin family, for successfully re-inventing a Norman Lear classic and for giving us another reason to love Rita Moreno. Most important for this podcast’s purposes, however, is its nuanced handling of teenage Elena’s coming out.

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Julia Sugarbaker Dates a Possible Homosexual show art Julia Sugarbaker Dates a Possible Homosexual

Gayest Episode Ever

Designing Women, “A Toe in the Water” (September 23, 1991) — What is Designing Women minus Delta Burke and Jean Smart but plus Julia Duffy and Jan Hooks? An interesting beast that is different than the Suzanne/Charlene years, yeah, but still pretty damn interesting. This episode is a showcase for Duffy’s anti-Diane Chambers, Allison Sugarbaker, who only lasted a season but it wasn’t her fault? Jonathan Bradley Welch makes his second GEE turn to talk Sugarbakers and his new podcast with Stonewall D

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“Can’t Help Loving That Man” (October 20, 1991)

Looking at the various 90s-era Fox shows that focused on black characters, Roc was the one with the reputation for tackling social issues with the most gravitas. Early in the show’s run, Richard Roundtree — Shaft himself! — guested as the title character’s uncle, who comes bearing the news that 1) he’s gay; 2) he’s getting married; and 3) his beloved is a white man. To discuss the various layers of this Roc episode, Drew and Glen are joined by University of Iowa professor Dr. Alfred L. Martin Jr., whose field of study includes a focus on the depiction of gay black men on sitcoms. Alfred’s forthcoming book is titled The Generic Closet: Black Gayness and the Black-Cast Sitcom. Yes, we would love to interview him when his book comes out.

Read more about Alfred’s work on his faculty page.

We mention the episode of Golden Girls that was recently pulled from Hulu for its alleged use of blackface, and Alfred mentions the larger racist implications of that episode that were not discussed and may not be discussed as a result of being pulled. This week, Steven W. Thrasher wrote an excellent piece for Vulture on various moments on the show in which the central characters display racist attitudes and why the show’s fans are better off acknowledging these failings.

Lisa Simpson singing “God Bless the Child” on The Simpsons Sing the Blues.

Also Glen’s favorite song, “Macho Duck.”

The book Alfred brings up is Fade to Black and White: Interracial Images in Popular Culture, by Erica Chito Childs. It’s about the depiction of interracial couples on TV and in other media. And the book Drew brings up is Queering the Color Line, by Siobhan B. Somerville. It’s about the intersection of racial and queer identity.

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Buy Glen’s movie, Being Frank.

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This is a TableCakes podcast.

This episode’s outro theme is “Color My Love” by Fun Fun (Apple Music / Spotify / Amazon Music)