Captain's Blog - Stardate 80816.3
A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to be "upgraded" to principal on a national commercial. (More on that when it airs). As I've been working very hard to properly "adult" on my part-time survival job salary, I have kept myself from indulging in one of my strongest addictions: purchasing action figures.
However, with a larger paycheck on the way, I decided that I could splurge just a little and pick up a few characters I had been waiting almost a year to add to my collection. The box arrived last Friday and I was very excited to rip into it.
Quick sidebar: When my cat was still with us, she also loved when new action figures arrived. See, the figures are held into their packaging by these sturdy twist ties...a heavy metal tightly wrapped in plastic. Lana delighted in chasing these all over the house and, for a time, I had quite a collection of twist ties for us to play with.
Back to Friday, I took five characters out of their packages and got ready to add them to the IKEA cabinet on the wall. That's when I realized something amazing: Three of the characters I was unwrapping were played by handsome, talented, openly gay actors.
How amazing is that? I can remember when it was a huge deal that straight actors played gay, when a gay kiss was not allowed on national television, and when actors were terrified to come out of the closet. And to be fair, many still are. But how great is it that these men, and so many more, are not only brave enough to come out but have been thriving?
John Barrowman: I was first introduced to Mr. Barrowman by binge-watching the first few seasons of "Doctor Who" and "Torchwood" on Netflix. Especially wonderful is that, not only is the actor out and proud, but the character of Captain Jack Harkness is also sexually open to a wide range of human and alien experiences, though on the show he tended to prefer men. He's still one of the only leading gay genre heroes. Seeing him appear as Malcolm Merlyn on "Arrow" was one of the selling points that got me to watch the show in the first place and, subsequently buy into the whole DC Television universe. Well, Greg Berlanti's shows, anyhow.
Wentworth Miller: I first saw him in his one-episode stint on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer." He was pretty great even when he was tearing his flesh off to become a creepy creature of the black lagoon. And while I never saw "Prison Break," I've read some great interviews with Miller that had me pretty impressed. I was thrilled to see him appear in this universe and Leonard Snart/Captain Cold was and may still be (spoilers) a very dynamic character on "The Flash" and "Legends of Tomorrow."
Colton Haynes: As Arsenal on "Arrow" and on "Teen Wolf" beforehand, the question of this actor/model's sexuality has been hotly debated until recently. With a racy Instagram feed and an "is-he-or-isn't-he" back and forth, this debate was fueled by fantasy for many. But his work on "Arrow" was pretty stellar and it's great to see him living loud on social media.
All three of these men have achieved two career goals of mine: Recognizable recurring roles on major network genre television AND they have their own action figures. In fact, John Barrowman has several (technically two from "Arrow" and at least three from "Torchwood" and "Doctor Who." I have most of them). And all while staying true to themselves.
How fantastic is that!?