PREACH IT! Kristin Chenoweth does our job for us. Thanks, doll! [poll]
It all started when Setoodeh posted an article essentially saying that gay actors should stay in the closet. He cited openly gay thespians like Sean Hayes -- star of the Broadway revival of “Promises, Promises” with Chenoweth -- and “Glee’s” Mr. Vocal Adrenaline, Jonathan Groff. Setoodeh’s general point: Gays can’t play straight, because they’re just too gay, gay, gay.
“Frankly,” Setoodeh writes, “it’s weird seeing Hayes play straight. He comes off as wooden and insincere, like he’s trying to hide something, which of course he is. Even the play’s most hilarious scene, when Chuck tries to pick up a drunk woman at a bar, devolves into unintentional camp.”
Of Groff, Setoodeh says, “When he smiles or giggles, he seems more like your average theater queen.”
Setoodeh also argued that none of this hetero bigotry is anybody’s fault. It’s just, like, how we’re raised: “We are molded by a society obsessed with dissecting sexuality, starting with the locker-room torture in junior high school.”
This ticked off some people, including Chenoweth, who wrote an angry letter ...
-- “We’re actors first, whether we’re playing prostitutes, baseball players, or the Lion King. Audiences come to theater to go on a journey. It’s a character and it’s called acting, and I’d put Hayes and his brilliance up there with some of the greatest actors period.”
-- “Setoodeh even goes so far as to justify his knee-jerk homophobic reaction to gay actors by accepting and endorsing that ‘as viewers, we are molded by a society obsessed with dissecting sexuality, starting with the locker room torture in junior high school.’ Really? We want to maintain and proliferate the same kind of bullying that makes children cry and in some recent cases have even taken their own lives? That’s so sad, Newsweek!”
-- “No one needs to see a bigoted, factually inaccurate article that tells people who deviate from heterosexual norms that they can’t be open about who they are and still achieve their dreams.”
And oh: Chenoweth wasn’t done. Oh no, she was not.
“I am told on good authority that Mr. Setoodeh is a gay man himself and I would hope, as the author of this article, he would at least understand that. I encourage Newsweek to embrace stories which promote acceptance, love, unity and singing and dancing for all!”
Boom! Served! Or ... you tell us, in our nonscientific online poll.
-- Leslie Gornstein
Photo: Sean Hayes and Kristin Chenoweth attend the party after the Broadway opening of "Promises, Promises" on April 25, 2010, in New York City. Credit: Andrew H. Walker / Getty
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