Comics Creators

Diversity in Modern Society


He’s the lead in a CBS procedural, though not one I expect to last past next season. The ratings were pretty poor.


Are we? I thought we were just talking about actors in general, TV or movies, leads or supporting roles. So instead we need to get so specific that we’re talking about heading what size of budget of movie? How specific do we need to get?

Ezra Miller just starred in a big budget superhero movie. Are we limited to Marvel movies only too?


Sure, but when the issue is to some extent about the public perception (and commercial impact) of casting a gay actor, whether they are publicly ‘out’ or not is obviously significant.

Saying that when actors come out it becomes their defining characteristic illustrates the issue, I think. I’m not saying you’re wrong about that, but I think it shows that it affects the public perception of them.


Sure, but I think it’s tough to argue against public perception sometimes. When you’re part of an identified minority you’re seen as that minority. Being gay is like being black or being a foreigner or being fat or being tall. It’s the thing that separates you from the average white template that’s the majority because in the US and Europe it’s the population majority by a significant margin. It’d be ideal if that were different, but it’s like being a white guy visiting China or a Nigerian visiting Ireland.

The critical issue is whether there’s prejudice that comes along with distinguishing you. Like I said, there’s clearly lot of gay actors working in Hollywood, some in the closet and some out. I’m not sure it’s a barrier to work - it may simply be the actors choice to not reveal themselves as it would impact their career.

Take Henry Cavill for example. If he came out as gay it might impact his sex appeal to women who view him as no longer available (not that he’s ever available to them but you know what I mean). The straight female market is much larger than the gay male market, so he’s making a business decision to be a heart throb for women. Doesn’t he have that right? My worry a little is that we mix up real prejudice in the world with perceived prejudice. And that we continue to look for outrage where it really shouldn’t exist.


I’m not sure if you intend that to refer solely to actors, or more generally.

If the latter, I definitely disagree.


Most people are defined by only a handful of things - their country of origin, their skin color, their sexuality or what they do for a living. That isn’t to mean there’s not more to them, it’s just the first word that would come to mind when thinking of a person you don’t know too well. Millar for example is Scottish. His name may as well be Scotsman Mark Millar. For lots of gay celebrities the first thing people will remember about them is that they’re gay.

If two people unfamiliar to you were talking about you what do you think they’d lead with to identify you - the Scottish doctor, the gay doctor or the sleep doctor?



I know one girl who was disappointed by Clive Barker sexual orientation. And even I, straight man, think he could had any women he wanted, just looking at his earlier pictures. He wasn’t that masculine as Cavill though.

But, speaking of self-representation, the case of David Bowie always puzzled me.



This meme is old by now but I just saw he pic and it cracked me up.


Would depend on the specific context, but if people were referring to me in a work context, the two most likely adjectives would either be “children’s” or “sleep” doctor. (Possibly “colourful” …)

Even though I’m currently doing a relatively prominent piece of specific LGBT+ related work externally , I don’t think anyone working directly with me would ever really refer to me as “the gay doctor” (I’m fairly sure there’s a significant number of colleagues who don’t know (and don’t really care to be honest) what my sexuality is.


It’s just so damned ambiguous! Is this a doctor who only treats gays or is the doctor gay or is he just glad to see you? And, really, who cares? Anywhere in medicine or psych (or most other fields, really) the main thing I want is competence! A competent fry cook! A competent police officer! A competent neurosurgeon! A competent comic books writer! After that, it’s all details and preferences.


I’ve spent 19 years being the Irish guy. It’s the biggest thing that people remember about me. Not the data guy or the Jigsaw guy (name of my company). I suspect if you lived in the states you’d be the Scottish Doctor first, sleep doctor second. Which is the point I’ve been making - how you stand out is by the thing that makes you uncommon among your peers. There’s not many Sleep Doctors. So too when an actor or actress comes out they’ll be tagged as the gay actor, at least for a portion of their career. Folks like Ellen and Neil Patrick Harris are household names at this point so they’ve eclipsed the need for that kind of tag.


Most people just call me Mike :slight_smile:

I know the point you’re making but I think it needs taking to the next level - allowing more people to be who they are means that identifying in the same way doesn’t mark them out as particularly distinctive any more for that reason. That means gay actors have to be cast in roles as if their sexuality doesn’t matter. For now, most feel the only way they can do that is by masking it; it needs to flip to the other extreme. The problem is that it’s not a move that’s amenable to a sudden flip.

Gay top-level football players is a perfect example; they’re all terrified to be the first or only one. Removing the stigma is a key step to normalising differences which are just that - normal.


Not true. Most of the people here remember you as the guy who mows his lawn in a dress.


I always thought of Mike as the Millarworld Dr! I didn’t realize he’s gay until recently, even the Captain America rainbow shirt didn’t tip me off. (I like rainbows and don’t automatically connect it with the pride movement) After watching him interviewed on YouTube and reading more of his posts, especially about NHS, I just think of him as a cool guy. :sunglasses:

As far as actors go, is there a stigma attached to straight actors portraying gay characters? Should gay characters be portrayed only by gay actors? (not in my opinion) Sexual orientation is way different than say race when it comes to roles. Gary Oldman wouldn’t take flack for playing a gay man but probably would if he played a black man. It’s hard to believe there is a concerted effort to keep gay actors from working in Hollywood. I think it’s more about audience perception than the studios.
Speaking of audience perception, my VERY conservative grandparents took me to see Death Trap in 1982. At 10 years old I was shocked to see Superman making out with “the guy from Zulu” (Michael Caine)! However it didn’t effect my view of them in other roles. (Grandma and Grandpa were way more freaked out by it than me) and Ian McKellen seems to get plenty of work, coming back to my original post on the topic, an actor’s sexual orientation just doesn’t seem relevant.


Of course he’s “just” Dr. Mike. Anyone who lives in a city and knows more than a dozen people knows gay people and it’s neither here nor there.

I do think Jim’s point about celebrities and actors is well taken. I don’t think he should have extrapolated it to normal people like us, but unquestionably male celebrities who are out generally become known for that before anything else, with some exceptions (playing, say, both Magneto and Gandalf tends to get you known for that first). It isn’t fair but it is what it is.

Also…if seeing a Scotsman in rainbow Captain America gear doesn’t tip you off then congratulations on having gaydar so low that it’s actually…kind of endearing? As ever, we just think of you as a cool guy. :sunglasses:


Yeah a few friends have come out that I knew for years and had no idea they were gay, one of my brothers came out to me 6 months ago, I was floored! My gaydar isn’t doing well. :wink:
I became a “Rainbow Warrior” (referring to Black Elk’s vision of the Rainbow Tribe) in a ceremony in 1992, so that’s where my mind went when I saw that shirt. :slight_smile:

Edit: for the record Ian McKellen came out long before either of those roles.


How soon they forget…

I do wonder how it has affected Luke Evans career. He still seems to play primarily hetero characters, though. In the end, the orientation of the actor is not important to the movie, but it does seem to affect their careers.


Which Millarworlder said that? The Hipster one.