Sunday, July 09, 2006

screw massage therapy. I'm going to be a pirate.

The thoroughly heterosexual Mr.--er, Captain, sorry--Sparrow at San Francisco Pride.

I just got back from Dead Man's Chest--don't worry, no spoilers--with an old friend and had a awesome time.

Until we got into the car.

We were swooning over Johnny Depp (come on, who doesn't want to do Johnny Depp? There was one scene where I didn't know who to be jealous of, him or Keira Knightley) and I said something to the effect of "Only Johnny Depp could pull off a gay pirate anti-hero!"

My friend was totally appalled. "JACK SPARROW IS NOT GAY!!!"

And we proceeded to go ten rounds on this issue all the way home. I kept trying to explain that Johnny Depp is a genius for incorporating gay male stereotypes--the swishy hands, mincing walk, fey diva attitude, and hello, eyeliner!--into the macho role of pirate-inspired-by-drugged-out-rock-star. And I'm not the only one of this opinion, I've read tons of comments on the internet and elsewhere who've said similar things. It's not that Jack Sparrow is gay, but that Johnny Depp is riffing on those coded behaviors. That's not the whole of his characterization but that's a brilliant part of it.

My friend totally blew a gasket. She kept going on about how he's only doing Keith Richards and Keith Richards always acts like that and anyway those aren't gay mannerisms, all drunk stoners act like that, and that she totally resents "certain groups of people" trying to make him a political statement and always trying to take everything thats ours by claiming it's gay and I just want to have fun summer entertainment that's not promoting a cause and if people go around saying Jack Sparrow is gay that totally ruins it and I can't enjoy it anymore!!!!

I wasn't sure what dumbfounded me more, the waves of knee-jerk homophobia pouring out of her mouth or the fact that she was so pissed off by the notion, taking it so personally. What do I know, maybe Keith Richards does act swishy, but anybody who saw Depp's character with no prior knowledge or context would think "That pirate acts kinda gay!" not "That pirate acts like Keith Richards!"

I mean, I'm totally okay with being wrong on this idea too, it just astounds me that for her any implication that Sparrow incorporates gay, effeminate behaviors totally destroys any pleasure in his performance. And that even suggesting such a thing is totally politically motivated and is a direct result of all these malicious gay people running around deliberately trying to ruin everybody else's fun, they have their own stuff, why can't they let our stuff alone? Us gay people, always in people's faces, controlling all the media, dictating the nation's culture!!

Oh, I'm out to her, by the way.

She's an old school friend and we hadn't seen each other in years, but frankly I'm not sure I'm willing to put up with more "tolerant" straights of the "as long as they don't flaunt it and stay inconspicuous" variety. Jeez louise. I hope nobody's told her about Rock Hudson...

Anyway, I think it's time to add some Patrick O'Brian to my efforts at self-medication reading list.


At 9:43 AM, Blogger reasonably prudent poet said...

if we can fuck up a summer blockbuster movie, imagine what we can do to the insitution of marriage...

At 9:46 PM, Blogger Katie (Kinney) Stegeman said...

We need to do something together before you run off again, which I'm sure you will do at the first possible opportunity! I'm leaving for Ireland on Saturday, but plan on me for a date in August!

At 9:56 AM, Blogger Kim said...

The don't call it "Keith Richards' Eye for the Straight Guy," do they?

(Gads, tho. I'd want to see THAT show!)

At 4:02 PM, Blogger Andygrrl said...

Katie: I'll email you!

Kaka mak: I would totally watch that show! It would be like some bizarre cross between Queer Eye and The Osbornes, I bet...


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