Still Tragic After All These Years
Padlock IconThis article is only a portion of the full article. If you are already a premium subscriber please login. If you are not a premium subscriber, please subscribe for access to all of our content.

Published in: March-April 2023 issue.



Directed by Michael Grandage
Prime Video


Directed by Michael Showalter
Focus Features



To continue reading this article, please LOGIN or SUBSCRIBE

           My Policeman and Spoiler Alert could not be more dissimilar in tone, but they both portray men in love as dismally doomed from the get-go. Neither challenges the cultural script that male relationships must end disastrously, though My Policeman does offer the two principles some redemption as old men. Both of these bummers left me with the dispirited sense that queer love stories with happy endings remain unavailable for mainstream audiences. In this respect, Spoiler Alert is no spoiler at all, as audiences have been watching gay men lose at love and die prematurely for decades. Where are our love stories unblemished, unspoiled by imprisonment and drawn-out scenes of disease and dying? This is not a starry-eyed plea for fabulism but a reminder that if representation matters, the Movie-Industrial Complex keeps serving up an extremely bleak view of what it means to be LGBT both in the past and today.


Colin Carman is the author of The Radical Ecology of the Shelleys.