Ellen Page and Ian Daniels are making a documentary series called Gaycation. It’s one of the best documentary projects I’ve seen, and even though only two episodes have been released I’m already semi-obsessed with this.
- Less than two minutes into the first episode, Page is already talking about the contrast between being closeted and being open and an activist for the LGBT community. She came out in 2014.
- Page is awkward as all hell in spite of her successes and the fact that she’s an LGBT icon. That’s 100% real.
- The series doesn’t wash out trans issues. This doesn’t seem like a big deal, but there’s a significant feeling of resentment between the LGB and T communities, because a lot of gay people think that we’d be farther along with civil rights if we weren’t defending the erosion of gender binaries as well as defending freedom of partnership. (There’s also this argument made between LG and B communities, and also there are lesbians who think that they could do better without gay men, because the porn industry gives them an edge. Many people who hate the idea of sex between men are less opposed to sex between women. None of this bears out in reality but it often leads to one of more groups being diminished or forgotten entirely.)
- The producers picked out some of the most interesting people for interviews. From a gay man in Japan who sells sex toys modeled after his mouth to an ex-cop who kills gay people whenever he sees them, the world is full of unique people that fall into every possible category of social awareness.
- There’s a scene where a Japanese man comes out to his mother. The cast handled it damn well, even though it was incredibly uncomfortable and it was pretty obvious that they were feeling out of place.
- The series addresses class issues. (and not in the dick-ish, condescending way that we seem to get from a lot of celebrities). This is important, because just about every issue is exacerbated by poverty. People living in poverty tend to be more religious and thus also tend to be more susceptible to the side effects of religion like homophobia.
7.The look on Page’s face when a politician defends his homophobia by saying that he would catcall her if he saw her on the street.
- This interview. All of it.
9. Ellen Page makes me feel like a coward. “I want to say that I’m gay. Do you think that’s safe?” She was talking to a man who brags about killing gay people, so no, that was probably not the safest thing she could have done. I’m with Trevor Noah on this. I know she’s okay, but I still get worried every time I watch that scene.
This is what I love, as a journalist. I want tough issues to be handled well, especially when they coincide with so many other tough issues. It’s so incredibly difficult to get something like this right (and I’m just talking about the on screen stuff. I know what goes on behind the scenes as well and that’s always much more impressive).
It’s a really good series so far. If you’re not watching already, check it out on Viceland.