LGBTQ+ Inclusion in the Television Series

Discussion in 'Wheel of Time TV Show' started by Jeffan Caliarthan, Nov 1, 2018.

  1. Jeffan Caliarthan

    Jeffan Caliarthan Aes Sedai Director of Marketing

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    As a preface to this entire thread, all comments need to be made in a respectful manner, regardless of your opinion of LGBTQ+ inclusion.

    There's not much in the way of LGBTQ+ inclusion in the source material, unfortunately. Yes, there are two named gay male characters (Algarin Pendaloan and Lord Baldhere), and there's references to female/female relationships in Pillow Friends and the like, but even those are seen as existing only when men aren't available.

    Robert Jordan himself stated that homosexual relationships are just taken "as a matter of course", which leads me to believe that a lot of these relationships existed, but they weren't featured at all in the books, which is disappointing.

    What changes do you think could be made in the television adaptation to improve upon LGBTQ+ representation?
     
  2. Leira Galene

    Leira Galene Mafia Admin Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    Since Rafe stated they might change Rand's relationships, I would definitely be down for Elayne and Avi being a couple :look
     
  3. Jeffan Caliarthan

    Jeffan Caliarthan Aes Sedai Director of Marketing

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    Rafe clarified in a late tweet that he wants to focus more on the polyamory instead of the polygamy, which I take to mean that it's going to focus on the four of them being in relationships with each other rather than Rand having a relationship with each of them.

    @Dralyn Montsier explained the actual terms to me, so if she has time, she can do a better job explaining.
     
  4. Leira Galene

    Leira Galene Mafia Admin Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    Totally fine with that. I'm down for multigender poly any time.
     
  5. Jodea Kegan

    Jodea Kegan Aes Sedai

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    They could certainly make ti clear that many of those Aes Sedai continue on with female relationships when there is a male presence. Same with the whitecloaks, black tower, and the kin, not to mention just normalizing the idea of same sex families throughout the series
     
  6. Ashlyn Sindal

    Ashlyn Sindal Aes Sedai

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    One thing I'd really like to see is just casual existence of queer relationships. Replace the problematic idea of Pillow Friends with actual relationships between women in the Tower. Have some of the men who show up with their families to train at the Black Tower bring husbands instead of wives. This isn't to say I wouldn't like to see queer relationships between more prominent characters, but having them exist as an unremarkable occurrence in the WoT world be awesome.

    I'm both excited and nervous to see how they handle the Rand/Elayne/Min/Avi dynamic. On the one hand, I am so there for bisexual poly representation, and I've been wanting to see Elayne and Avi together since I was 16. On the other hand, there is so much cultural baggage around relationships with one man and multiple women being portrayed as inherently titillating and male gaze-y, and the conflation of bisexual/poly/slutty, and the push for every new fantasy TV series to be "the new GoT" that I'm nervous it will be overly sexualized with little focus on the romantic and personal relationship aspect. And I generally trust Judkins as a showrunner, so I'm not super nervous, but still. A little nervous.
     
  7. Jeffan Caliarthan

    Jeffan Caliarthan Aes Sedai Director of Marketing

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    For some reason, I have very little concern that they're going to sex WoT up to make it more like GoT. It's just not the vibe I get from Rafe. I don't know why I trust him so much. :p

    And yeah, casual queer representation would be amazing.
     
  8. Alyria Savoinya

    Alyria Savoinya Aes Sedai

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    I like the idea of just casual Pillow Friends because I like the idea that women can casually have sex without the need of a relationship and it not be a big deal. That women can be sexually active without being in a committed relationship (and without necessitating male involvement,) would be huge for me to see on television.
     
  9. Elania al'Manir

    Elania al'Manir Aes Sedai Forum Moderator

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    Ideally the show would have both casual and more committed relationships, whether same- or opposite-sex.
     
  10. Bracken Farthyne

    Bracken Farthyne Novice

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    Given that RJ said what Jeffan quoted, this seems like the obvious choice. It would be so easy, and they have the author's pronouncement to back them up against any fans who get their briefs in a bunch over "political correctness".

    I also feel like they won't sex it up, but for me it's less trust and more that I don't think it's a smart business decision. Trying to be Game of Thrones would just make them Discount Game of Thrones, and people won't want to watch that. They already have the original, and they already know and care about the characters in that one.

    If they want this to blow up like they hope it will, they're going to have to hit a different niche, and Wheel of Time's source material was already so much more family-friendly that I suspect they will want to lean in on that difference some.

    That makes me hopeful about how representation will play out. If you're not trying to titilate, there's less temptation to get all "male gazey" on a bisexual polyamorous relationship, for example. Romance can be romance, love can be love, without needing the camera to like... leer at it.

    Man, though, I'm nervous about the poly angle, because of how high my hopes are. It could be so great to have a wholesome bi/poly family in fiction. I honestly don't think I've ever seen it done. I once read a novel that was set in a world where mixed-gender marriages of four or five were the norm, though, and I still think fondly of that story. It was a really interesting flip-side image.