The “queer Disney story” was made on Friday when the absurdly titled High School Musical: The Musical: The Series debuted the children’s entertainment giant’s first gay love song between two boys on Disney +.
In the episode, titled “The Transformation”, Carlos (Frankie Rodríguez) sings to his boyfriend Seb (Joe Serafini). Seb feels insecure in their relationship and Carlos wants to calm down, so he sings the new song “In a Heartbeat” to him.
The lyrics themselves aren’t explicitly gay, but the fact that it’s a boy singing about his love for another boy was enough to get the media excited.
Weekly entertainment reported that “Disney’s first romantic song between two members of the same sex” is “finally breaking that old-fashioned trend” of love songs between a male and female character. (In fact, last month another Disney + show, The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, featured a lesbian teen kiss after one girl sang to the other a love song she wrote called “Everything to Me,” but that one seems to have gone unnoticed for some reason).
EW celebrated the “groundbreaking romantic ballad” with an interview with the two actors, who are also dating in real life. Rodríguez said he was “very happy” when he learned the meaning of the song. “He is very special and I hope that people can connect with him. I just hope this is like a model of what is to come and what else you can explore and what you will do. Being the first is crazy! “
Unfortunately, it seems like this is just the beginning. They have a very clear agenda.
… So how does it feel to know that you are presenting this more inclusive picture of how a love story can be viewed more clearly to a young audience?
RODRIGUEZ: Oh my gosh, it feels amazing and is obviously very much needed. The fact that we become that representation that we definitely couldn’t see grow on a platform like Disney with a popular franchise, it means a lot. We definitely see the response, especially on social media, from kids who came up and said, “Your characters gave me the confidence to be myself” or “Your characters gave me the confidence to come out of the closet.” Those are major life-changing decisions and therefore it is very special to be a part of someone’s journey in that way.
SERAFINI: Yes, and it is very important to have people to look to, especially if you are in a situation or environment that may be less tolerant, to see that if I feel these feelings, other people are too and there is hope. There is someone to look at. It will all work out and hopefully it will get better.
They want their characters to be an inspiration. “… the fact that they are only teenagers who really adore each other and that is what we are seeing, and not only that, but they are being supported by the people around them, I think it is very important,” Rodríguez continued. . “I hope people take away some kind of hope and feelings of support from seeing it.”
“And validation,” Serafini added. Of course. First it was tolerance, now it is validation.
Gay teen romance was first introduced in season 1 and the show has been pushing gay pride from the start, not to mention AOC, Greta Thunberg, and Michelle Obama as teen idols. Needless to say, its “inclusiveness” excludes conservatives.