Comics Corner – Infinite Frontier establishes DC’s gay past and queer future

In the DC Universe, the only constant is change. The main continuity of the superhero publisher has been rebooted no less than nine times since 1986’s Crisis on Infinite Earths, with follow-up events Zero Hour, 52, Infinite Crisis, Final Crisis, Flashpoint, Rebirth, Dark Knights: Metal, and Dark Knights: Death Metal all re-stitching the fabric of the fictional universe – and if the Watchmen crossover Doomsday Clock proves to ‘count’ in the grand scheme of things (it might not, because of very complicated reasons) that’ll be an even ten major cosmic re-workings.

The most recently concluded of those events – Dark Knights: Death Metal – has given way to a new landscape where DC’s temporarily erased past has been restored, with legacy characters taking up decades-old mantles in the present, and setting the stage for millennia of heroes to come in the future. This new world is established in this week’s Infinite Frontier #0 – and it promises even more LGBTQ+ representation in DC’s roster going forwards.

The comic itself is essentially an anthology, with a framing sequence – written by Joshua Williamson, James Tynion IV, and Scott Snyder, with art by John Timms and Alex Sinclair – following Wonder Woman after her transition to a more cosmic position in the wake of Death Metal. Travelling unseen across the DC universe, before possibly ascending to a state of godhood herself, she checks in on friends and allies alike.

Many of the segments serve chiefly to set up the status quo for various characters and stories going forwards – the Batman segments, for instance, establish an attack on Arkham Asylum that wipes out almost all the residents, criminals and doctors alike. Similarly, a lead-in to the upcoming Justice League run sees Superman encounter a seemingly penitent Black Adam (regrettably nicknamed “Shazadam” here, which hopefully will not stick) on a path to redemption.

However, it’s a section centred on the original Green Lantern, Alan Scott, that’s likely to be the hallmark of the comic for LGBTQ+ readers. In a four-page spread written by Tynion IV, with art by Stephen Byrne, the classic hero is not only re-established as a primary figure in the history of the DC Universe, but confirmed to be gay.

We’ve explored the complicated history of Alan Scott in Comics Corner before, but to briefly recap, the character – who first appeared back in 1940 – was re-imagined as a gay man a decade ago, in a series called Earth 2, set in an alternate universe. The Green Lantern 80th Anniversary Special, published in June 2020, laid the groundwork for Alan’s return in the ‘main’ DC Universe, with a story (also written by Tynion IV) that merged the veteran 1940s hero with the modern gay take on the character from Earth 2. At the time, we wondered if the plan was to have Alan be bisexual, but Infinite Frontier takes things in a different direction.

In an emotional and difficult conversation with his children Jennie-Lynn and Todd, AKA second generation superheroes Jade and Obsidian, Alan confesses that he’s been hiding a part of himself for decades. It was a part that he ignored in favour of burying himself in work and the responsibilities of being Green Lantern. Now, with an important new role ahead as a sentinel protecting the world, he feels he needs to be finally true to himself.

Interestingly, the section is narrated by Obsidian, who himself came out as gay in 2006, in the pages of Manhunter. Having come out before his father, it’s Todd that helps Alan finally get the words out and say “I’m gay”. It provides a nice role reversal, with the younger hero supporting and guiding the elder statesman.

While it’s slightly disappointing that DC hasn’t established Alan as a bisexual hero – bi men have catastrophically low levels of positive representation in mass media – the reveal of the core continuity version of Alan Scott as gay is rather elegant. It maintains the gay representation of the Earth 2 take on the character, while keeping the long history of the character intact. Tynion IV doesn’t erase Alan’s established previous relationships or marriages to women – Alan says he let himself “get married a few times to women I did love with all my mind”; that latter comment, ‘mind’ not ‘heart’, a beautiful, subtle, and slightly sad distinction – and maintains the continuity point that Alan didn’t even know about Jennie-Lynn and Todd’s existence until they were adults. The exchange also establishes that Alan quietly told some of his allies in the Justice Society – a World War II era team of superheroes – decades before, which offers opportunity for future stories to explore the reality of being a closeted gay man in earlier eras. The twist of one of the world’s most powerful heroes protecting people he knows would reject the truth of him is one ripe for exploration.

Perhaps most interestingly, Alan’s new status provides readers with a rare example of an older gay hero – a rarity in and of itself, let alone one dealing with coming out later in life. How Alan deals with his newly open existence, and perhaps more interesting, how his peers react, lays the groundwork for fascinating stories to come.

Infinite Frontier isn’t just a lens into DC’s queer past though – other areas hint at other LGBTQ+ heroes we’ll be seeing more of in coming months. A short written and drawn by Joëlle Jones, with colour art by Jordie Bellaire, focuses on new character Yara Flor – who, readers of the recent Future State series will know, grows up to be the next Wonder Woman. In that possible future, Yara ventured into the underworld to rescue the soul of a fellow Amazon she seemed remarkably close to – close enough to literally walk into hell for. Yara will be seen next in a new Wonder Girl series, launching in May, so it’ll be there any relationships for her are explored.

Meanwhile, the lead-in to a new Teen Titans Academy doesn’t reveal much beyond the introduction of a new generation of young heroes set to trained by the original Teen Titans. However, teen-focussed comics tend to be where new LGBTQ+ characters are introduced, making this a book to keep an eye on.

With other recent comics introducing a , set to take a more prominent role going forward, Infinite Frontier helps pave the way to a brighter, more inclusive and representative future for DC – and that’s something every LGBTQ+ comics fan should be pleased about.

It Looks Like August Kilcher From ‚Alaska: The Last Frontier‘ Is Single!

The 10th season of Discovery Channel’s Alaska: The Last Frontier premieres on Oct. 25, and August Kilcher — Otto and Charlotte’s youngest son — confirmed that he will once again be appearing on the series.

The delightful ginger has logged more camera time ever since he left college to return to his family’s homestead, but unlike his brothers, the 22-year-old has yet to settle down and start a family. Some viewers have speculated that August is gay, and after a little digging, we were able to find evidence of his past relationships.

Comics Corner – Infinite Frontier establishes DC’s gay past and queer future

Frontiers’ Parent Company Shuts Down, Leaving the Future of the 35-Year-Old LGBT Magazine in Doubt

Multimedia Platforms Worldwide has laid off the staff of its five publications, effectively ending publication of Frontiers, the leading gay magazine in Southern California for 35 years.

According to sources close to Frontiers, who asked not to be named, the layoffs were announced to the staff yesterday. Frontiers has published its most recent bi-weekly issue online but no print copies can be found.

In a filing with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission this past Friday MMPW announced the resignation of four of the five members of its board of directors. Those resigning include Robert Weiss, who was named president and CEO of the financially troubled company in June. Bobby Blair, the founder of MMPW, has assumed the role of CEO.

South Florida Gay News reported today that Blair had told some staffers that MMPW is “in suspension.” SFGN said Blair cited as a reason a court order issued on behalf of Massachusetts-based lenders that effectively seized the company’s assets. He said the order “has been issued prohibiting the company from distributing any cash or any other assets of the company.” Blair said he has retained a lawyer to fight the order.

Blair was once one of the country’s top junior tennis players in the United States and played professionally and coached. In 2009, he launched the Fort Lauderdale-based Florida Agenda, an LGBT newspaper. In June 2012, he took control of a company that eventually evolved into MMWP, with plans to buy and expand digital and print products across the country. He now lives in Los Angeles.

Blair purchased New Frontiers Media LLC, the publisher of Frontiers, in September 2015 from Michael Turner, whose profession is assessing the value of properties. Turner acquired Frontiers out of bankruptcy for $361,000 in December 2013. Blair’s MMPW added Frontiers to a portfolio that included Florida Agenda; Fun Maps, a series of maps of gay communities calling out bars and shops; Next magazine, a New York City gay nightlife guide, and Guy Magazine, a Fort Lauderdale website for gay men.

In a filing with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission, MMWP said its net revenue as of the six months ending June 30, 2016, was $1,459,168, leaving it with a net loss of $4,698,798. It reported negative working capital of $5,518,237. As of yesterday, the value of MMPW, including all of its publications, was $299,000 according to an online listing of penny stocks.

Neither Turner nor Blair have responded to requests from WEHOville for comment. A friend of Turner’s told WEHOville that he hopes to reacquire it if, as expected, MMWP files for bankruptcy.

Frontiers was founded in 1981 by Bob Craig and focused on local, national and international news related to the LGBT community, as well as local entertainment and HIV/AIDS-related issues. It also published classified ads for escorts. The paper was purchased in 2007 by David Stern and Mark Hundahl, who died in December 2012. In recent years it claimed a circulation of 30,000 copies throughout Southern California. It once had a large audience in West Hollywood, where 40% of the population is said to identify as gay.

Under Turner, Frontiers magazine headed in an unusual direction. He brought on as editorial advisor Owen Phillips, a heterosexual man, who helped Turner realize what he told WEHOville was his goal of expanding the magazine’s appeal to a heterosexual audience as well as a gay audience. In the last year the magazine has carried reviews of movies, music, restaurants and nightlife with no obvious gay connection. That strategy is unusual in an era where successful magazines are tightly focused on well-defined audiences, moving away from the general audience focus of Look and Life of the 1950s and 1960s.

Turner also expanded Frontiers’ distribution to San Francisco, Fresno, Sacramento, San Jose and Las Vegas. That also was an unusual strategy given the most of Frontiers’ advertisers are L.A.-area businesses whose customers are local.

After Turner’s purchase, the magazine’s advertising pages plummeted. Where once Frontiers published a 68-page or 72-page issue only during the dead holiday season or in August, recent issues of Frontiers contained only 60 pages. Frontiers also lagged in website traffic, with data from Amazon’s showing it was the lowest ranking gay website among eight national sites, including , which leads the others, and and , the website, also ranks far below , which covers local gay issues given that 40 percent of West Hollywood’s population consists of gay men.

John Duran, a West Hollywood City Council member and a gay activist, lamented the closing of Frontiers. “The founder of Frontiers, Bob Craig, was a dear close personal friend of mine,” Duran said in an email message to WEHOville. “We worked together for LGBT/HIV issues at the Life AIDS Lobby and West PAC in the 1980s. It’s a sad day that Frontiers has closed its doors. Bob poured his heart and soul into the news magazine, which was central for LGBT organizing before the arrival of the internet and social media. Back then, Frontiers served as the primary communication tool for all of LGBT Southern California. Bob and Frontiers were also partially responsible for the creation of the City of West Hollywood. The end of Frontiers newsmagazine is a reminder that one era of LGBT history is closing – and another is yet to be written.”

Green Lantern Just Came Out As Gay in DC Canon

In DC’s Infinite Frontier #0, Green Lantern Alan Scott admits to his daughter Jade and his son Obsidian that after years of hiding it, he is gay.

With the launch of DC’s Infinite Frontier, Alan Scott, the first Green Lantern and co-founder of the Justice Society of America, has confirmed that he is a gay man. Admitting this truth to his two children in the halls of the JSA headquarters, Alan’s historic declaration also reveals that his secret wasn’t just known, but protected by some of his closest teammates and friendsThis new side of Scott’s character was first explored with his Earth-2 incarnation, leading many readers of DC’s New 52 books at the time to wonder if the original Alan Scott was harboring the same secret. Now, this sincere and heartfelt admission not only sets the next stage of DC Comics stories, but makes Golden Age heroes part of a companywide movement to make all previous characters and stories relevant.

Create by Martin Nodell, Alan Scott was an engineer who discovered a mystical green lantern following the events of a horrific railroad bridge collapse. Given a ring that granted him flight and the ability to create glowing green constructs of whatever he thought of, Alan became the Green Lantern and began a superhero career that remains relevant today. His first marriage to the schizophrenic villain called Rose and Thorn gave birth to his children, Jennie-Lynn and Todd, who were put up for adoption. Alan didn’t know of their relation until years later when they were Jade and Obsidian of Infinity, Inc. His family life complicated by his dedication to the JSA, Alan regretted not being there for his children and worked hard at building a better relationship with them, which had its own ups and downs.

In the story by writer James Tynion IV and artist Stephen Byrne, Obsidian narrates his complicated history with his father as he and his sister are called to meet with their father. Launching into a monologue about time and being honest with himself, Alan can’t seem to bring himself to say it. He admits how difficult it is to Todd, whose own backstory as a gay hero who’s maintained an undisturbed relationship allows him to provide the necessary love and encouragement. „I’m gay“ says Alan Scott. He is warmly embraced by his children, admitting that he felt he couldn’t take his new position as the Sentinel without being completely honest with his friends and family.

Writer James Tynion IV confirms what he hinted at in his story with Gary Frank in Green Lantern 80th Anniversary 100 Page Super Spectacular, where one of the victims of a bridge collapse may have been more than a murdered friend to Alan. This situation mirrors the Earth-Two series when Alan’s proposal to his boyfriend Sam Zhao was fatally interrupted by the train wreck that led to Alan becoming his universe’s Green Lantern, something that has become canon because of DC’s new Omniverse. As a character created during a time where such identities were misunderstood and ostracized by the public, the mainstream Alan Scott hid away this part of himself, but his relationships, and occasional marriages, were doomed to fail due to him being incomplete. His hints to Todd are a beautiful reference to the former villain’s backstory as a gay hero, sympathetic to his father’s struggle and giving him the necessary strength to finally accept the truth and say it out loud.

Alan Scott’s admission opens up many amazing possibilities for future DC stories. The confirmation that other heroes knew allows other founding JSA members like Jay Garrick, Ted Grant and even unnamed former lovers to comment and tell their stories. Green Lantern has always been the backbone of the JSA and now his role as the Sentinel for the Quintessence signifies hope for the future, as this older hero embraces the best in himself so that Infinite Frontier and the world they’re building can be better, and brighter, because of it.

Drew is a reader, writer, artist, and creative professional based in Westchester, New York. He dabbles into cosplay, movie references, comics, and some anime while also being a Ghostbuster. He has a Bachelors in History, a Masters in Publishing and is excited to be working with Screen Rant. Previously his articles have been featured on Comic Book Resources and Iron Age Comics and he’s excited to see what happens next!

21 Netflix Shows With Awesome Gay Characters

If you need more gay characters in your life, Netflix is the answer! Here are 21 shows featuring gay men that you can stream right now. For shows featuring lesbian characters, check out this list. 

The Showtime drama Queer as Folk ran between 2000 and 2005, and was the first hour-long drama on American television to focus on the lives of gay men and lesbians. All five seasons are currently streaming on Netflix.

The musical comedy-drama show, Glee, featured multiple LGBT characters. Kurt Hummel and Blaine Anderson’s epic love story is one of the best TV romances of all time.

Though technically all of sensates are pansexual according to the show’s creators, closeted actor Lito and his boyfriend Hernando, who really knows how to do the glasses/beard thing, deserve a shout out.

The first and second season of Skins gave us Maxxie Oliver, a gay young adult character who is actually popular, talented, and fairly well-adjusted. That shouldn’t be a big deal, but unfortunately, it kind of is.

You’ll have to get through (or skip through) the first four seasons of The Vampire Diaries to see the first major gay character, but Luke Parker (Chris Brochu) is worth the wait.

Nefarious White House Chief of Staff, Cyrus Beene, and his journalist husband, James Novak, are major characters throughout the first few seasons of Shonda Rhimes’ addictive drama.

The CW’s reboot of The Flash features Patrick Sabongui as sarcastic, hardboiled Central City Police Captain David Singh, who comes out in an off-hand comment.

The Vampire Diaries spinoff features openly gay vampire Josh (Stephen Krueger) who is introduced in Season One.

Shameless explores the tense (and arguably inappropriate) relationship between closeted teen, Ian Gallagher, and his older boss, Kash, with a sensitivity that’s not always characteristic of the show.

Fan favorite, Connor Walsh (Jack Falahee), is an openly gay law student. The show’s steamy sex scenes do not disappoint.

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. features Marvel’s first cinematic gay male hero, Joey Gutierrez (Juan Pablo Raba), who is an inhuman so hot he can melt metal.

Sadly, none of The Tudors’ gay storylines feature Jonathan Rhys Meyers, but the tragic love story between artist, Thomas Tallis, and closeted nobleman Sir William Compton, make it worth a watch.

Roommate of Kimmy Schmidt, Titus Andromedon, has been criticized for playing to gay male stereotypes. Still, Broadway star Titus Burgess brings a little depth and a lot of perfect comedic timing to the role.

Degrassi: Next Class handles LGBT storylines like it handles all Big Issue storylines—with all the subtlety of a peacock swallowing a live grenade. However, the show does feature two regular gay characters, Tristan and Vijay.

The Carrie Diaries features Brendan Dooling as Walt Reynolds, Carrie’s best friend who comes over the course of the show. Because the show is set in 1984 in New York City, HIV/AIDS is often discussed.

The sci-fi drama Warehouse 13 features Steve Jinks, also known as The Human Lie Detector, as a major, openly gay character.

Though United States of Tara is mostly about giving Toni Collette some really intense clips for her reel, the show features Marshall Gregson as a gay teen character. His sexual orientation is presented as matter-of-fact.

Salvatore Romano, the Italian-American art director, struggles with staying closeted and 1960s workplace homophobia on the first few seasons of Mad Men. Poor Sal. Also, while it’s not confirmed, I don’t think anyone is buying that Bob Benson is straight.

Serena van der Woodsen’s little brother, Eric van der Woodson, comes out over the course of the show, though he rarely gets enough screen time.

Remember Tom Mater? With the dimples, and the eyes, and the square jaw? Sexy interpreter for Jodi Lerner? Oh, then do you remember how he impregnated Max and left him when things got real? How could you, Tom? We were rooting for you. We were all rooting for you.

Though Frank Underwood and many of his male conquests (let’s not call them relationships) are bisexual, the Michael Corrigan storyline in Season Three is horrifying, heart wrenching, and completely worth the watch.

‚Brokeback‘ and the gay frontier

Only weeks after its release in the United States, „Brokeback Mountain“ is on the verge of being embalmed in importance. A lightning rod for attention even before it opened, the film has earned plaudits from critics‘ groups along with predictable sneers, and it has provoked argument over its gay bona fides.

That „Brokeback“ is a landmark is a matter of empiricism; its merits as a work of art are a matter of taste. What has gone missing is that this is also that rare American film that seamlessly breaches the divide between the political and the personal, the past and the present. Here, against the backdrop of that mythic territory of rugged individualism and the Marlboro Man, is a quietly devastating look at masculinity and its discontents.

Jack and Ennis, the lovers played by Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger, marry unhappily, but their wives pose far less of a real threat to their happiness and physical well-being than do other men – those overbearing fathers, bullying bosses, leery strangers and lead-pipe-wielding thugs who shadow their affair from start to heartbreaking end. On Brokeback Mountain, away from what Whitman called „the clank of the world,“ Jack and Ennis are free to follow their own (Whitman again) „paths untrodden.“ The mountain becomes their lost paradise, a realm of absolute freedom separate from the law, society and, most radically, the yoke of identity. On Brokeback, the two men are neither straight nor gay; they are lovers, which probably accounts for the category confusion that has greeted the film.

That „Brokeback Mountain“ quickly and jokingly became known as „the gay cowboy movie“ speaks to the unease surrounding the film’s subject, but it also reflects an unfamiliarity with both the West and the western. The image of the cowboy looms large in the popular imagination, even if the heyday of the actual cowboy was relatively short. Hollywood, and later television and advertising, kept him alive in the collective consciousness.

In an interview in a Wyoming newspaper, Annie Proulx, who wrote the original story on which the Ang Lee film is based, corrected the common misconception about her two characters. „Excuse me,“ said Proulx, „but it is not a story about ‚two cowboys.‘ It is a story about two inarticulate, confused Wyoming ranch kids in 1963 who have left home and who find themselves in a personal sexual situation they did not expect, understand, nor can manage.“ Jack and Ennis are not cowboys (if anything, the two are shepherds), but they are, in Proulx’s resonant words, „beguiled by the cowboy myth.“ It is a myth shaped as much by Hollywood as history, which is why when Ennis pushes his Stetson down to obscure his face, the gesture recalls nothing so much as James Dean pushing down his Stetson in the epic 1956 western „Giant.“

I thought of „Giant,“ initially because Gyllenhaal wears a mustache in the film meant to signify that Jack has reached middle age, but which instead makes the young actor look like a refugee from a high school production. The mustache reminds me of those scenes in „Giant“ in which its two male stars, James Dean and Rock Hudson, wear silvered hair and painted-on wrinkles to suggest the passage of time. Hudson, who lived in the closet most of his life, and Dean, who may have lived there too, were meant to look like the kind of men who have weathered the years and their storms, and, importantly, kept the covenant of the country – and of Hollywood – by falling in love with a woman, not with each other.

In „Brokeback Mountain,“ Jack and Ennis embody the classic western divide between nature and culture, their lives split between the freedom of the wilderness and the restrictions of the putatively civilized world they call home. Proulx’s story opens long after the symbolic closing of the American frontier and six years before the Stonewall riots, which delineated a new frontier that would soon change the country’s social and political topography: gay rights. As Proulx has reminded interviewers, Matthew Shepard was murdered the year after her story was published. His death and the debate over same-sex marriage are reminders that this frontier remains open.

Much like the West and the democratic ideal of the cowboy, which helped create the myth of the American frontier and the freedoms it was meant to represent, the movies create fantasies of liberation that don’t always correspond to the world off-screen. In „Brokeback Mountain,“ Jack and Ennis cling to the myth of the cowboy because it offers a freedom that only really exists when they cling to each other, a freedom that remains contingent even now.

Gay Happiness, the New Frontier

Do gay men suffer higher rates of depression, anxiety and suicide because of the bigotry they face? Or is it a result of bad lifestyle choices? Patrick Range McDonald posed that question in last week’s cover story (“Gay Happiness, the New Frontier”).

Some readers, like jasons0660, were receptive to McDonald’s argument. “I think the gay scene itself contributes to depression,” he writes. “Most gay meeting places are built on a sex act. I can’t think of anything more depressing than building your social life on a sex act. There’s also a lot of appearance fascism on the gay scene — if you don’t look a certain way, you’re not wanted. It’s bound to make you feel depressed when you’re rejected simply for not looking a certain way.”

Abramsrl disagrees. “Since being psychologically abused as a child causes psychological problems for adults, one knows that we gays will have a rather high incidence of psychological issues. One grows up in a society where leaders in Congress and in churches and often in our own homes blame everything on us, including 9/11. Aren’t we the ones who coined the phrase, ‚He has issues‘?

“My party days are over, and I loved them when I had them, but they were not ones of desperation and drugs. We were mostly young professionals and business owners with some med students, law students, etc. We had our businesses to run in addition to our daily gym visits. Since I don’t drink or do drugs, if drug abuse was happening on a large scale, I did not really notice.

“If there is one thing I do know about being gay, it is that Gay is Good. Gay is Great! I do not recall deciding to be gay, but if I did make that choice, it was the best choice I ever made in my entire life.“

But reader Annoyed believes McDonald is on to something. He repeats a quote from the article: “Too many gay men are competing with each other and tearing each other down.” He writes, “Absolutely true! One needs to go no further than to see this. Being the outcast, bullied gay kid in your high school is nothing compared to the hate spewed on that website. The website is the embodiment of the self-hatred endured (and thus projected onto others) by gay men in West Hollywood.

“I’m glad gay culture is dying. We once needed a community we felt a part of, that would protect us and stand with us in the battle against bigotry and hatred. Now we need loving family and friends, gay and straight, to protect us from that community.”

As Gene Maddaus reported, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa inked a deal in 2007 that has meant big raises for city union workers — a package that ultimately will cost L.A. $700 million (“The Villaraigosa Hangover,” Sept. 21).

Of Villaraigosa, Phil92508 has this bleak thought: “The people elected him. Twice. Bankruptcy is the only way out at this point, as anyone running as an independent on a campaign of fiscal responsibility would be savaged by the unions.“

Budgetwatcher snipes, “It would be nice if reporters would point out the details of how city workers have worked with city management by 1) renegotiating their contract two years ago to eliminate some raises and defer others, 2) agreeing to pay more for retirement contributions, 3) paying more for healthcare, and 4) furloughs. That is rarely if ever reported. Some balanced information would be nice to counter the perception that city workers are unwilling to help with the city’s financial problems.“

Suureee isn’t buying Budgetwatcher’s argument, beginning with his name. “Budgetwatcher? ‚Moneytaker‘ is more like it,” he snipes. “City workers took too much, and have no cause to pat themselves on the back for ‚deferring‘ some of the excess. Or for their contract that slapped L.A. with a multimillion-dollar penalty if excess workers were laid off. Or for boasting of ‚furloughs‘ — non–paid time off. In the real world, you do the same work for less pay. New York in the 1970s, Detroit now and L.A. not far behind: That is the legacy of public worker unions, and the craven pols who allowed them to run the city instead of working for the city.”

Jack90020 adds, “The public-sector labor unions seem to forget that salaries will have increased 35 percent during the Villaraigosa era. So givebacks and sacrifices are all relative. The Mayor Who Broke L.A. is another moniker for the 11 percent Mayor.”

We got a belated but still share-worthy response to Karina Longworth’s Sept. 14 cover story, “Video Paradiso” — about the migration of the contents of New York’s top video store to Sicily — from Alex Van Dyne. “Interesting article about Kim’s Video,” he writes. “As one of the managers of L.A.’s local video legend Eddie Brandt’s Saturday Matinee, I can verify that Quentin Tarantino has rented from us without any of the snotty strictness that probably aided in Kim’s demise. But we’re snotty too, I guess, because when we read that Kim’s had 55,000 VHS tapes and DVDs, we were not impressed.

“We have more than 100,000 in our collection, not to mention nearly 2 million news and show business photos — the largest collection of movies and photos in the country in private hands. Truth is, the bricks-and-mortar movie rental business is spiraling down, and in this economic climate nobody is immune. We were one of the first to rent movies (starting in 1978) and soon may be the last one standing. Then again, in the not too distant future, don’t be surprised if there’s a news story about the massive Eddie Brandt collection going on the block. Anybody got room and time to sort through five tons of movies and photos?”

Please send letters to L.A. Weekly, 3861 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230. Or write us at . Full name and contact info preferred.

Senior Living Facilities: A Frontier for Gay Rights

Gay people in the U.S. have made great strides in overcoming discrimination. From being the subject of slurs in the 1954 McCarthy Trials to the 2015 Supreme Court ruling making same-sex marriage legal nationwide, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans-Gender (LBGT) Americans have made remarkable advances on the path to equality.

Seattle—with the fifth largest LGBT population of any U.S. metropolitan area—has been in the forefront. In the late 1960’s, not one law — federal, state, or local — protected gay men or women from being fired or denied housing. But in the 1970’s, the Seattle City Council passed landmark revisions to the City’s Fair Employment Practices (1974) and Open Housing (1975) Ordinances, making it illegal for employers, landlords and home-sellers to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. Then Mayor and long-time Bayview Trustee, Wes Uhlman (image above), was a pivotal supporter of these measures. Uhlman also officially declared a Gay Pride Week in 1975, an historic first. And years of persistence by former state senators, Cal Anderson (now deceased) and Ed Murray led to legislation in 2012 making Washington the seventh state to make same-sex marriage legal.

Today, LGBT people enjoy vastly increased acceptance, wield substantial economic power and influence, and openly exercise leadership in our society. One recent study estimated the buying power of LBGT persons in the U.S. to be $884 billion. And consider the following openly gay leaders: Apple CEO, Tim Cook; Talk Show Host, Ellen DeGeneris; CNN Anchor, Anderson Cooper, and Seattle Mayor, Ed Murray.

Yet much more progress needs to be made, particularly for LBGT elders. The Administration on Aging estimates that there are 1.5 million LGBT people age 65 and older in the U.S., and this population will double by the year 2030. And despite data showing prosperity among the general gay population, LBGT elders have disproportionately higher levels of poverty, financial insecurity, and social isolation stemming lifetimes of discrimination.

Senior living facilities generally lag behind in creating welcoming and non-discriminatory environments for LGBT elders. For example, a 2014 study by the Equal Rights Center found that 48% of older same-sex couples experienced unequal treatment when inquiring about housing in a senior living facility, including less information about available units, higher costs and a more extensive application process.

Here we at Bayview look forward to becoming another Seattle leader in breaking down discrimination against LGBT people. For many years, the Bayview community has opened its doors and arms to LGBT older adults. And today, we are enriched by a good number of gay and lesbian elders who call Bayview home. Yet we too have much more to do in providing a welcoming and comfortable environment for LGBT elders. Pro-active marketing and sales, education in cultural competency, and varied pricing. It’s all part of moving forward.

Lost “Star Trek” Episode Breaches Final “Gay” Frontier

The most alien creature in the Star Trek universe? An openly gay person, none of whom have been seen in more than forty years of official Star Trek movies and TV spin-offs.

But the USS Enterprise will be at least a little gayer this Saturday when Peter Kirk, the openly gay nephew of Captain James T. Kirk, and his boyfriend set foot on board the starship.

No, this isn’t a storyline in any upcoming series sanctioned by CBS, which currently own the rights to the Star Trek TV franchise, nor is it part of J.J. Abrams “reboot” of Paramount’s Star Trek movie franchise coming in May. As far as we know, all the “official” Star Trek projects on the horizon remain steadfastly gay-free.

This storyline is part of an independent online project called Star Trek: Phase II, which imagines a “fourth” season of the original series using new actors in the classic roles of Kirk and company. CBS and Paramount allow such “fan” projects, providing they’re not moneymaking operations.

Jonathan Zungre as Lt. Chekov, James Cawley as Captain Kirk, Ben Tolpin as Mr. Spock, Jay Story as Transporter Chief Kyle

The three existing episodes of Phase II, one of which starred Star Trek actor George Takei, have already been downloaded more than thirty million times.

The new “gay” episode, “Blood and Fire”, will be released in two parts. The first part is available for free download this coming Saturday on the show’s website, and Part 2 will be released in February.

The episode, provided exclusively to for preview, is professional in its execution — not surprising given that the project uses some of the original Star Trek sets and that many veterans from the actual movies and series have donated their talents to the project.

Indeed, “Blood and Fire” was co-written and directed by David Gerrold, the out gay writer of the classic “The Trouble with Tribbles” Star Trek episode and a writer and associate producer on the first Star Trek spin-off, Star Trek: The Next Generation. “Blood and Fire” was originally written for that series, with the strong support of series creator Gene Roddenberry, and it was intended as a metaphor for AIDS.

But at the time, television executives and the show’s producers balked at the inclusion of two minor gay characters. “We treated them like they were really good friends,” Gerrold says of that original script. “But someone does ask them: ’How long have you been together?’ Well, a few people in the office went ballistic! A memo came down that said, ’We don’t want to risk the franchise by having mommies calling the station because they saw gay people on Star Trek.’“

Peter Kirk (Bobby Rice) and Alex Freeman (Evan Fowler)

James Cawley, the executive producer of Phase II who also plays James T. Kirk in the project, knew about the rejected script. When he contacted Gerrold, the Star Trek veteran was enthusiastic to adapt his old script for the project, working with Phase II writer Carlos Pedraza to make it more relevant to today.

In Part 1, the Enterprise receives a “distress call” from another starship. En route to the source of the call, we meet a new Enterprise crewmember, Captain Kirk’s nephew, Peter (played by Bobby Rice, an actor from another gay-friendly Star Trek online fan series called ).

Bobby Rice as Peter Kirk and Evan Fowler as Alex Freeman

But there’s tension between Peter and his famous uncle, who is determined to keep him out of harm’s way, even if it means treating him differently than the other crewmembers. Eventually, Peter reveals the real reason he requested a stint on the Enterprise: to be near his boyfriend, Alex Freeman (Evan Fowler). When the couple make plans to marry, Kirk agrees to officiate, but only “after the away mission” — which may or may not bode well for the future of this relationship.

“The episode isn’t about ‘being gay,’” Cawley says. “It’s about family tensions and a lot of other things.”

Still, the gay couple does share several kisses and a surprisingly steamy bedroom encounter (which begins with a cheeky homage to recent Phase II guest star George Takei when one of the two men climbs on back of the other, covering his eyes and asking, “Guess who?” “Mr. Sulu?” the other answers. “You wish!” the first responds).

The gay elements are interwoven nicely into the plot and don’t feel forced or part of a “very special episode”. The couple is accepted by the crew as something perfectly normal though at one point Captain Kirk does ask another crewmember if he was the only one who hadn’t known about Peter.

Furthermore, the portrayal of Peter and Alex’s romantic relationship is treated no differently than any of the dozens of heterosexual relationships the various Star Trek incarnations have included over the decades. Indeed, the storyline is incorporated so naturally as to make the “official” Trek’s inexcusable lack of gay characters even more obvious.

Eventually, the Enterprise discovers that the ship sending the distress call has been ravaged by something called “bloodworms,” which quickly infect all those on the away mission too. Meanwhile, Kirk and those back on the Enterprise are left to wrestle with the uncomfortable implications of a contagious, fatal disease that was previously thought to be contained.

Denise Crosby, who played Tasha Yar in Next Generation, appears in Part 2 of “Blood and Fire”. In addition to Takei, Walter Koenig, another actor from the original series, guested on an earlier episode of Star Trek: Phase II. The episode in which Takei starred was nominated for a Hugo Award.

“Blood and Fire” looks and sounds a lot like one of the original Star Trek episodes, but with much better special effects and a much more contemporary feel. Star Trek: Phase II underplays its portrayals of characters such as Kirk and Spock, so famously portrayed by iconic actors William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy.

Cawley does a particularly good job with his “re-creation” of James T. Kirk; wisely, he doesn’t do a distracting, full-fledged imitation, choosing instead to do something that is merely reminiscent of Shatner’s portrayal (and one that is probably more understated than Shatner’s).

Still, in another very funny bit, which is so “meta” it makes your head hurt, Peter Kirk imitates the much-mocked inflections of Captain Kirk.

“It’s a deadly serious story,” Cawley says,”but David [Gerrold] wanted it to have that humor that Star Trek is famous for.”

But the most refreshing aspect of the episode is definitely its long-overdue integration of gay characters into the Star Trek universe (though, sadly, gay fashion sense has declined dramatically since the 23rd century, with Peter Kirk appearing in a jumper in one scene that is almost surreally ugly).

Better still, Cawley plans to make Peter an ongoing character in the online series. In addition to the two-part “Blood and Fire” episode, the character appears, with gay-related storylines, in two more episodes that have already been filmed and are currently being edited. They will also be released in 2009.

„Star Trek in the 1960s wasn’t afraid to show half-naked women, different races working together, challenges to the Vietnam War,” says Cawley. “You look at those stories, they were ballsy. But Star Trek hasn’t had the guts they had in the 1960s to have a gay character. They should have been the first science fiction series to do this, but they weren’t.”

August Kilcher isn’t gay — but he does appear to be single at the moment.

The reality star’s mom previously shared photos of his last two girlfriends on Instagram, which made fans very happy. Shortly after August’s high school graduation in 2016, Charlotte posted a picture of the then teen with a girl named Megan, leading followers to leave comments like, „What a nice looking couple“ and „So glad you have found someone to love.“

By 2017, August was dating a woman named Geneva, and — according to Charlotte’s social media activity — they stayed together for at least a year. The pair allegedly split before February 2019, which is when one fan remarked, „I hope August finds a great girl.“

In a 2020 special celebrating The Last Frontier’s upcoming 10th season, the TV personality didn’t address his current relationship status, but did reveal that a stranger had recently come to his house to ask if they could quarantine together. Talk about creepy. 

Although Alaska is very much a red state, August seems to have adopted a more liberal mindset when it comes to the coronavirus pandemic. On May 4, he urged his Instagram followers to take COVID-19 seriously. 

„It’s been a minute since I’ve posted anything, but wanted to let people know that a: I’m still alive and 2: that we can get through these unprecedented, trying, uncertain, desperate (insert buzzwords here) times,“ he wrote, adding, „Regardless of what media tells you, be smart and safe.“

He concluded his message by stating, „This is our lives, our families’ lives, and our neighbors’ lives that we have in our (washed) hands alone. Also masks aren’t hurting anyone.“

Love Life: Is August Gay Or Has Girlfriend?

August Kilcher is not gay and is in a buttery smooth relationship with his sweetheart, Geneva Indira Hall. August and his girlfriend’s romantic affair became official when the lovebirds officially declared their relationship on their Facebook bio. As per the couple’s bio, they have been in a lovey-dovey relationship since 11 February 2017.

{border:none !important;display:block !important;float:none;line-height:0px;margin-bottom:15px !important;margin-left:0px !important;margin-right:0px !important;margin-top:15px !important;min-height:250px;min-width:250px;text-align:center !important;}August and his lady maintains a picture-perfect relationship and often flaunt their impeccable bonding on social media posts. On 4 October 2017, August, who is a few inches taller than Geneva, shared a picture from their trip to his home from Oregon. He even showed his happiness for being able to take his lady love to his home in the caption. 

August Kilcher’s relationship with his lady has become more firm and passionate. He feels lucky to have a lovely lady in his life whom he met at OSU longtime ago. Moreover, the duo is nearly in their second years of togetherness.

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