From Glee to Modern Family and House MD to Torchwood, there is one thing in common amongst these shows. I’ll give you a clue: it’s not the hot men who cannot seem to keep their shirts on.
The answer is homosexual characters.
Lately, there is an increase in LGB characters on television. LGB representations increased from 3% in 2009 to 3.9% in the 2010-2011 broadcast television schedule. This increase may cause viewers to become desensitised (as mentioned in post 4). But, the increase in homosexual characters also fossilised negative stereotyping.
Often, gay men are portrayed as feminine and feisty divas with a penchant for designer clothes. Lesbians on the other hand seemed to be out seducing heterosexual women and convert them into a homosexual.
Whilst it is true for some gays and lesbians, it is not applicable for all. Such stereotypical representation can hurt the homosexual community’s image. As the cultivation theory suggest, these shows will impart their viewers a common interpretation that all homosexuals behave as they are portrayed on television. The stereotypical behaviour of the homosexual community on television strengthens most viewers’ existing notion that homosexual behaviours, personalities and lifestyles are very much different from heterosexuals. As a result, in general, the society tends to view the members of LGB community as outliers. This underlying negativity prevents more people from accepting the LGB community.
GLAAD’s “Where We Are” report – http://www.glaad.org/files/whereweareontv2010-2011.pdf
The homosexual propaganda campaign in America’s media – http://www.massresistance.org/docs/issues/gay_strategies/after_the_ball.html
Television’s gay characters aim to add diversity, but unintentionally reinforce negative stereotypes – http://www.dailyorange.com/2.8656/television-s-gay-characters-aim-to-add-diversity-but-unintentionally-reinforce-negative-stereotypes-1.1247730
Gay stereotype hurt or help – http://adelantemagazine.com/2010/04/do-gay-stereotypes-hurt-or-help-the-gay-community/
Stereotypes that need to stop – http://www.sundancechannel.com/top-ten/top-ten-gay-stereotypes-that-should-stop/
Pssst: The Girl’s Guide To Lesbian Cliches & Stereotypes – http://jezebel.com/5205953/pssst-the-girls-guide-to-lesbian-cliches–stereotypes
The Portrayal of Gays and Lesbians on TV – http://www.aber.ac.uk/media/Students/mtw9402.html
Glee image – http://iphonewallpaperclub.com/the-glee/
House MD image – http://www.alliphonewallpapers.com/images/wallpapers/e1ar7t03s.jpg
The Real L Word:Top 5 Misconceptions About Lesbians – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k4ygU89BN08
Gay Myths Busted: Setting the Record Straight. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pgmMp9HdlFc&feature=plcp
What Is Being Gay (According to the Media)? – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qJyV85J1VhM