Star Wars – Finally Entering the 21st Century with Gay Characters?

Raythe says:

In a galaxy far, far away the only gay characters you ever saw in Star Wars existed only in fanfiction.

With the release of the newest movie, Mark Hamill, bless him, has already said that people can think Luke is gay, because it’s never been  stated one way or another.  But many were hoping for more than just to use our imaginations.  We’ve been doing that in fanfic for ages.  Now, it has been confirmed that Star Wars will join the 21st century and have openly gay characters.

imgres Some of you may know that I got my start writing Star Wars fanfiction.  One of my most “famous” pieces was a Luke x Vader fanfic called Forbidden. Despite the fact that I haven’t written fanfiction in over 6 years I STILL get requests to update that piece and write Luke x Vader in general.

I think this expresses a deep desire for people to see gay characters and gay romance in one of the most beloved franchises on Earth.  (Also, the forbidden aspect of Forbidden, i.e., the incest, really worked for a lot of people, too, but that’s another blog post.).

I’m thrilled that Star Wars is finally addressing the actual existence of gay people.  So why am I not as hopeful as I can be?  

Because while many franchises recognize the power of the fan who slashes their favorite characters (Supernatural even had an episode on it), normally, we’re only given crumbs.  Sometimes, we’re openly mocked.

I don’t think a main character in Star Wars will be gay. The gay character will probably be a tangential player.  We likely won’t see any actual romance between them and their partner.

It certainly won’t be a sweeping centerpiece epic (but wouldn’t that be awesome? Already I see a Jedi and Sith hopelessly in love and … THE ANGST).  For example, when people thought Poe Dameron and Finn might be in love it was shot down real quick.

So while I’m glad that things are finally changing a little bit, I still think we will have to look to fanfic to see the epic, romantic stories we want.  But maybe I’m wrong. What do you guys think?

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31 Responses to Star Wars – Finally Entering the 21st Century with Gay Characters?

  1. BuddhaAlex March 10, 2016 at 10:14 pm #

    I’m shocked. Am I truly the first person to comment?

    Wild. Its… odd and forced sometimes when Hollywood tries to write about “gay” or “lesbian” characters… as thought the directors, screen writers and even actors have never met one and only have a vague idea of the stereo type. particularly in blockbuster-style action movies. Generally if we’re lucky the gay person is the plucky comic relief and side-kick and survives. Sometimes though the gay character is still the villain or a bit perv who gets killed during act 2. Very frustrating for anyone gay or bi and trying to “live vicariously through film and mass-media.”

    That being said I was so happy for my Finn and Poe Dameron head-fiction. I just love that pairing more than I can say…

    • admin March 10, 2016 at 10:20 pm #

      Email just went out so I’m thrilled you commented first.

      The Poe/Finn pairing was natural and automatic, but guess what? It’s not real, because you know both are manly men and main characters and; therefore, must be straight … It’s not like the other movies are written so why COULDN’T they have taken the couple that people liked (and immediately read into them a love connection) Poe and Finn and kept it that way? That’s why I’m not really hopeful.

      • Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:31 pm #

        silly hollywood. when fans tell you two characters have chemistry like that… you go with it lmao

  2. Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:27 pm #

    agree we will prob see most of it in fanfiction still even if they are more open about it in the films. i remember reading a post about finn and dameron and someone commented “why is this happening everywhere leave star wars alone” and it made me really irritated because only in movies (less and less now thankfully) is EVERYONE magically hetero and some people act like anything other than that is a taint 🙁 it makes me really sad. im curious to see what star wars will do in the future since they have decided tobhave openly gay characters and i hope fans will be open enough to give it a chance and allow it to help to pave the way for LGBTQ in entertainment and in general.

    • admin March 10, 2016 at 10:32 pm #

      Fanfic will always be ahead of the curve for sure. I just worry that the character will end up like many token characters do: which is in the corner or dead … they always seem to end up dead. While I am not really interested in a “coming out’ angsty b/c the character is gay plot, what I don’t want is for them to have it be so tangential that it plays no role. I could totally see Kylo Renn being gay and having this angsty relationship with a light-sider. But they would never do that … Sigh.

      • Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:45 pm #

        i understand your feels T.T and i think youre right – they will probably end up in the corner… or dead. i never thought of kylo renn that way… but (MWAHA) i can see it work lol new head cannon lmao i actually kinda wondered if maybe he had a thing for rei (sp?) but i think it was more his obsession with luke and the fact that she perhaps reminded him of luke that drew him in… and eventually un-nerved him

        • Keith March 10, 2016 at 10:54 pm #

          Noooo no no Kylo Ren is with Hux!!! I’ll fight you tooth and nail about that!

          • Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:58 pm #

            ahahah guess ill have to read that fanfiction XD

  3. Keith March 10, 2016 at 10:49 pm #

    They said there would be an openly gay character in the movie, but I don’t think we will actually see any gay romance in the movie. Why? Because so far in Star Wars, we’ve only had ONE romance per trilogy (Anakin/Padme and Leia/Han), and I don’t think that’s going to change. Side characters just don’t get romance, there is no time to get into their love stories. I don’t even feel bad about it — it would probably slow down the movie to focus on too many love stories. People don’t go watch Star Wars to see romance.
    So in the new trilogy, we’ll probably again have one romance only. And it will most probably be Finn/Rey and not Finn/Poe. It makes me sad but… again, can’t really blame Disney… Rey and Finn are the main characters. I’m not gonna complain because a GIRL finally have the major lead! Poe wasn’t even supposed to survive the first movie in the original version of the script (or so I’ve read somewhere). So they’ve most probably planned Finn/Rey since the start… they could change it but I don’t think they will.
    The “openly gay character” will be either Poe or a new side character, and there will probably only be a very short hint that he’s gay. But hey we’ll see!

    Anyway, we have our fanfictions!!! And there, not only Finn loves Poe, but even more importantly… Kylo Ren loves Hux!!!! <3 <3 <3 <3 And they have a cat named Milicent and they have angry sex and they just LOVE each other even though they suck at admitting their feelings and, and!!!! *screams internally*
    (yes I'm Kylux trash and I love it and I just can't do anything else in my life than spending hours on tumblr everyday reblogging Kylux stuff!!! XD)

    By the way, for all those who love Kylux, I VERY STRONGLY recommend the fanfiction Children Wake Up by hollycomb (on AO3). It is just AWESOME! All the Kylux fandom is crazy about this fanfic it's not just me x) So many fanarts about it already it's crazy. It's the next best Star Wars fanfic after Forbidden. I'm a mess emotionally since I've started reading it… next chapter will be out in a few hours I just CAN'T WAIT!!!

    • Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:54 pm #

      true story, Rey IS totally awesome lol. thanks for the fanfic recommendation 🙂 and happy reading!!!

    • Andarial March 10, 2016 at 10:58 pm #

      also, i think it would be awesome to have Rey without necessarily having a love interest (or one thats explored in the movie anyway) and have Poe x Finn if they are only gonna do one romance. lol *sigh* one can dream

      • Keith March 10, 2016 at 11:08 pm #

        Yes Rey not having any love interest would be awesome I think. Not ALL the girls in the movies need romance!! When only a small pourcentage of the male characters get one…
        On the other hand if she does have a romance while trying to become a Jedi it could be interesting. There is no more Council to forbid her from having a relationship, but history showed that a married Jedi could become very bad news… though while Vader’s love for Padme made him go the wrong way, it’s definitely his love for Luke that made him come back to the light, so I guess it would be silly to forbid love for Jedi again…

    • admin March 10, 2016 at 11:00 pm #

      You’re undoubtedly right. But I would put out there (ahem) that there WAS another romance in Star Wars. It was Vader’s seduction of Luke and Luke trying to save his father. It was far more intense that Leia x Han could ever be. That was the centerpiece. I really don’t see Rey with Finn because she seems like the tragic: I must go this alone figure. But yes, I love that she’s a woman and the lead and that Finn is a black man and the lead and that they could be together. Normally as a POC Finn would be dead, but he isn’t and he’s kicking ass and taking names.

      • Keith March 10, 2016 at 11:12 pm #

        Ah, true, there was that! <3 <3 <3 Now that you say it, I realize Vader x Luke was indeed way more intense than Leia x Han.

  4. Jamie March 10, 2016 at 11:43 pm #

    I would like to note that this is not actually the first reference to homosexuals, married people who work, fight, raise kids and actually exist in that particular universe with traits beyond, “the gay one” for Star Wars. In the books, canon until Disney redacted the whole thing, there was at least one Character, and his husband, who is gay. A Mandalorian named Bevin.

    He’s not big as a character (in terms of import), and I can only think of him and his husband off the top of my head, but he does, or rather did, exist, and he was in the canon. It just saddened me that one of the precious few references to something like this in a mainstream sci-fi franchise was totally forgotten.

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 12:00 am #

      You’re right (though one character in a book …) anyways, I really meant in the movies. I know that the canon has totally changed, which is cool as it lets them put in a lot of different things now though we lose the good parts, too.

  5. River Iris March 11, 2016 at 12:42 am #

    I haven’t seen that movie yet, though I plan to when it hits digital download. And I can’t comment on ‘Star wars’ slash, because it’s not my cupa outside of seeing the moves a time or twelve over the years. But it would make my ears turn green with pleasure if the new ‘Star Trek’ tv show that’s planned would have even one side story or couple be openly gay (or bisexual). Why not pansexual and one alien they come across be from a world where gender is as mundane as clothing choice. And yes, I remember that episode with Riker and the “single gendered” alien. Kirk/Spock might have well been canon because of T’hy’la was Roddenberry’s a-okay. Garak/Bashir would have been canon if not for the producers (it’s canon with the actors though!). Gender and love have been almost abused with how much they analyze and flit around with hints of something not said. If any show or movie could pull it off without it feeling out of canon, that show could! I realize the fears of producers (and everyone involved). For many people this “gay” thing is new, and that means frightening to most. I don’t judge people who are against this negatively for that reason. I just wish they wouldn’t be so quick to say green alien slave master women are okay, but two humans of the same gender are not.

    On that long note, I wanted to say I will probably read your ‘Smallville’ fic ‘Guardian Devil again’. To any who haven’t read it, read it even if you haven’t seen the show. If you know anything about it, know anything about ‘Superman’, or just like a sweet story with an original character that would fit in on this sight, spend a few hours and enjoy.

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 12:48 am #

      Oh, my God, a shout out to my old fanfic! I actually NEVER watched Smallville. I just read all the fanfic on it because it seemed to attract particularly good writers and wrote my own. And I would love to see Star Trek have a gay side character though have you seen how slashy they made Kirk and Spock in the new movies?! If only they could really be together … But yes, I think Star Trek, too, is way overdue for a gay love interest.

      • Ellie March 14, 2016 at 2:47 pm #

        I would suggest going on youtube and typing in the search, Star Trek: Blood And Fire.

        It’s a gay love story involving Captain Kirk’s nephew and his male lover.
        It’s a very good story, but very angsty and tragic, as a warning.

        I eventually plan on writing a fanfic where they get they’re happily ever after! 🙂

  6. Bianccaw March 11, 2016 at 1:59 am #

    I wish they would openly support ships of thier characters together but of course they dont, although i would die if i ever saw kylo and (kylux) hux canon cause its so cute and omg.

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 2:16 am #

      That was what sort of got me about the Supernatural issue. They basically made fun of the shippers that keep that damned show alive …

  7. Evilcleo March 11, 2016 at 5:56 am #

    Not a Star wars fan but Batman’s sexuality has always been questioned. I don’t think I could see him as homosexual though. I did read a shounen-ai manga where he is gay and I liked it a lot but the mangaka’s version is more of a gag in a “this is so cliché” yet enjoyable way that it cannot be compared. It’s called “deep black” by mamahara Ellie if anyone wants to check it out.

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 6:53 pm #

      Batman is a classic slashable character with Robin though! I guess though it depends on which “version” of Batman you see. There are so many!

      • Evilcleo March 12, 2016 at 12:44 am #

        Not to mention, there are 4 people who have played Robin; all of which have very different personalities and connections to Bruce Wayne. Especially if you slash Damien Wayne, which accuses Batman of 1) incest, 2) sexual abuse, and 3) pedophilia.

  8. susi aka fearless March 11, 2016 at 5:58 am #

    I THINK it’s a good sign that more and more lesbian and gay playrolls exist in movies or shows. But the way they do it sucks in the most cases. Because they use klichees – a lot of them. And the gay or lesbian characters are low in playroll or actors or script. And I miss some romantic scenes too or when some exist then a cold or bad side of the gaylife… Or really worse – they take a pseudo straight scene with a one-night-stand with a woman or another gayman with a huge gender problem in him – like a woman in him etc… It sucks. So I hope we will get more in the future, special better couples and playrolls etc…

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 6:56 pm #

      Yeah, there’s the downside of it, too. But hope springs eternal that they’ll do it right.

    • Evilcleo March 12, 2016 at 12:12 am #

      They need to work on at showing bisexuality better too. Adaptations show them as indecisive people who jump from males and females when it suits them in their need for drama and romantic tension. As much as I appreciated how they made Korra bisexual at the end of the series, it was a last minute change that undermined the entire love triangle that went on for 4 seasons and the on-off relationships they had. Korra had her flaws but being an indecisive flake wasn’t one of them.

      • admin March 12, 2016 at 5:55 am #

        As a bisexual myself, I think of it as the “final frontier” in terms of actually showing it properly and not as some freaky thing. Though maybe trans-sexuals will be the very last on that list of being shown as something respectful. But I do hear you.

  9. Methusleah1 March 11, 2016 at 9:56 pm #

    I think Poe will probably end up being the “Gay but rejected by the straight guy” character but honestly, although I have read some GREAT fanfics about her and Kylo and Finn, I kinda hope that Rey either isn’t the romantic focus, or that she falls for a woman. Captain Phasma perhaps? Either way I really want the focus of the next film(s) to be on developing Rey’s character more because we have so few movies where the woman is the hero without somehow being sexualized somehow or made to focus on what sexist Hollywood writers think Women think about. And I also hope some women of color and trans or nonbinary people show up in the next few films as well, because while women don’t get shown as full characters, LGBTQIA+ people and women of color often don’t show up at all.

    • admin March 11, 2016 at 10:25 pm #

      I think that you are right on that it would be an issue if Rey has a love interest, because it would be nice not to have a woman sexualized. I’m positive though that she will be with a man though if she does have a love interest. As to trans and POC, I am sincerely hoping that they don’t kill them off like they usually do. Finn hold onto your life!

  10. Keith March 13, 2016 at 4:49 pm #

    I saw this on tumblr and of course it made me think of the conversation we were having here:
    In a recent episode of the anime Star Wars Rebels, two male characters have a storyline that looks SO MUCH like the typical scenario of a yaoi fanfic!!! To quote the artist comment on the episode: “I mean… two characters who hate each other, trapped in the snow… forced to huddle for warmth.. one is injured… I feel like I read a really weird fanfic”.
    Haha. Now I kinda ship those two characters.

    Though of course they aren’t going to REALLY be a couple…sadly… it would be so awesome if they did become a couple but I have zero hope :'(

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