Monday, December 13, 2021

TV: Coming out kind of- Colton

Colton Underwood is a 29-year-old male and some might argue that's awful young to be the sole focus of a 'reality' TV show.  But Colton's already been a contestant on 2018's THE BACHELORETTE and the star of 2019's THE BACHELOR.  In April of this year, he came out as gay.




Now he's the star of NETFLIX's 'reality' program COMING OUT COLTON.  

Colton has several things going for him -- looks, an interesting past and a likeability factor.  

He also has a few things going against him.  He had a very bad patch publicly when he stalked a woman, Cassie Randolph, after their 'reality' TV hookup and then break up.  In COMING OUT COLTON, Colton explains (repeatedly) that he became convinced that Cassie was his one shot at being straight and that he just couldn't let her or that go.  We have no reason to doubt him and we don't believe, if there's a season two of the series, that he needs to continue to rake himself over the coals.  He's tried to make amends and if the person in question doesn't want you to make amends to them, move on.  Otherwise, it's not about you making amends, it's about you making that person uncomfortable.

We were uncomfortable watching much of the series.  We'll come back to that in a moment but instead note a decided plus: Gus Kensworthy.  Going in, we thought he would be the worst part of the show.  His actions at the Olympics really did not impress us one bit.  We felt he focused too much on the outside world and not enough on the events and that this was reflected in his Olympic performance.  But he seemed more focused in the mini-series and more honest -- was that porn star Diego Sans he admitted to having had sex with?  

He also offered honesty on the show at a time when it seemed in short supply.

That's not to pick on Colton.

A friend of ours has a comedy special and it's being hailed as many things -- all of them good.  We've ignored the special.  Why?  The man is gay.

There's nothing wrong with being gay.  But in the special, he's talking about his demons and what he's dealt with and lived with and . . .  The suggestion is that he's straight.  This comedy special would have been the perfect opportunity to come out as gay.

But he didn't.

Gay is complicated.  A lot more complicated than most grasp, we're starting to realize.  Especially when it comes to men.  Tenderness between women is not something shocking so maybe that's why society can better understand when romance develops between two women?  

Or maybe it's just because straight men frequently fantasize about two women having sex so it's more easily pictured?

What we're getting at is Colton's not done coming out.

Let's back up.  Colton presented himself, as part of ABC's 'reality' programs, as a virgin.

Was that true?  We don't know.  And this is a failure of season one of COMING OUT COLTON.  It's never asked, it's never explored.  

Was he a virgin?  He may well have been.

Equally true, "I'm a virgin" may have also just meant he never had sex with a woman.

Had Colton had sex with a man.  Oral, anal, mutual jerk off as a teen, anything?  


He didn't want to be gay, okay, we get that.  But were their times when he acted on his urges?  That's part of the story that should have been told. 

The Colton in the media at that point and in the series apparently didn't even masturbate.

When you consider the various things discussed and implied on the show, the fact that we have no idea about how the adult star has acted -- or not acted -- on his healthy, sexual urges is a cop-out.

It's also a cop-out that we have to do the work.  

Unless the point is that season two is going to be the second coming out.

Frequently, a man has to come out as gay.  And then there's the second coming out.  

That's the subtext of season one of COLTON COMING OUT.  It's the story in the background.

Colton is now dating Jordan C. Brown.  We found that out from friends we discussed the series with a few weeks back.  Friday and Saturday, they called to say, "You were right! You picked up on what no one noticed!"

We find it hard to believe that no one else noticed it -- even if our friends didn't notice it.

Colton's next coming out is as a bottom -- if he's honest.

No one really asks that about women.  Well, Richard Avery on KNOTS LANDING did ask "who's the man?" when he accused his wife Laura (Constance McCashin) of having an affair with CJ (Lisa Hartman).  But most people -- even what you might call the de-volved -- can grasp how women interact with one another sexually.  It's only when it's two men that so many feign shock and surprise.

We grasped Colton was a sub or bottom early on.

There's a conversation where Gus is asking him about his ideal man.  Colton's looking down, looking to the side, looking all over before he uncomfortably cites 'wisdom' and Gus correctly notes that Colton wants a "daddy."  It's said briefly and then immediately disappeared.

But that's what he wanted -- and with Jordan C. Brown, it's what he's gotten.

We get how this is uncomfortable for Colton.  He's a former professional football player, he's someone desperate for his father's approval.  He's also a guy who wants to be penetrated and we're still not at a point in our society where everyone's comfortable with that.  

But if that's what Colton wants and his failure to get that (Gus really picked a bad group of men to have him interact with -- maybe Gus thought he was being silly when he said Colton wanted a 'daddy') is what's hampering season one, that's not making for 'reality' TV.  We do expect a certain honesty and a certain reality even though we know it's not really reality.

There is nothing wrong with Colton wanting to take a cock.  But because it's something that so many women do, there's a stigma attached to it.  Two women eating each other out, for example, doesn't carry that kind of stigma.  Again, men can relate to that.  

Truth be told, probably most men can relate to a cock inside them as well.  They may not want one in them but they can relate to it.  And a lot of the reaction to it is, honestly, pretense.  They're overreacting because they don't want to be seen as gay.  Pegging's popularity may end up being the thing that shatters the pretense.

Colton is clearly worried about his father's approval -- much more so than his mother's.  Maybe that's because his mother has experienced penetration and he feels she can relate to his desires?  Equally true, if he were a man dating a woman, people would think it was cute if he wanted a woman like his mother or if he were a woman dating a man and he wanted a guy like his father.  We need to grow up as a society.  There's nothing wrong with Colton wanting to bottom or with him wanting a Daddy.

It's not fair to Colton, or any gay man, that their lives may require multiple coming outs.  But it's also not fair to do a 'reality' TV show about a man who has come out when you're not really being honest, when watching a full season of six episodes still requires you to 'do the math' to figure out what's going on.  



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