Love, Simon starring Nick Robinson is anything but “just another gay movie.”
In theaters everywhere March 16th, the blockbuster follows closeted gay high schooler Simon Spier who has fallen in love with an anonymous classmate online. The movie tackles many experiences of the average queer teen, from coming out to parents, dealing with isolation, and wondering why heterosexual has always been society’s default. But instead of painting a gloomy picture of a gay teen’s life, Simon’s journey is filled with romance, humor, and heart. A lot of heart.
Love, Simon is a fresh, cheery addition to the fairly short list of LGBTQ+ blockbusters. A positive rom-com centered around a gay high schooler, starring well-known faces like Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel, is not something you see in theaters every day. Or ever. Yet the pessimism and doubt are still present (often from adults who don’t have a single clue what it’s like to be a gay teen).
"‘Love Simon’ is a groundbreaking gay movie. But do today's teens actually need it?" https://t.co/9ScmnaNQCw
— TIME (@TIME) March 8, 2018
Of course, we do. And the rest of Twitter agrees:
"do gay teens really need to see themselves happy on screen?" is literally the worst take of all time https://t.co/gFCYAcc4ny
— Rowan Ellis 🌈 (@HeyRowanEllis) March 9, 2018
that "do gay teens really need 'Love, Simon?'" article is funny to me because I'm imagining a world where heterosexual art must also double as activism. in that world, the headline is "do straight people *need* Transformers 2?"
— JuanPa (@jpbrammer) March 10, 2018
do LGBT teens need love, simon? cishet adults weigh in!
— allie (@jewsinaroom) March 9, 2018
The argument that LGBTQ+ kids do not need Love, Simon has been harmoniously and aggressively refuted by the entire community. Frankly, it is absurd to claim this is an unnecessary production just because “times have changed” (the nation’s views on queer rights haven’t changed as much as we all think).
The film’s motto “Everyone deserves a great love story” speaks to all LGBTQ+ youth who are closeted — from small towns to big cities — who may not have the opportunity to see themselves represented often. Especially not as a protagonist in a highly publicized movie like this.
– are in EVERY movie, even LGBTQ+ ones
– they don't end up together
– one of them dies
– or leaves
– or cheats
– focus on homophobia
One LGBTQ+ movie:
– is about… romance
Straight person: but dO TODAY'S TEENS NEED IT? DO THEY REALLY???? https://t.co/gvbeyMJyVK
— Letícia (@berry_sck) March 10, 2018
We need Love, Simon. We need the authentic story of a gay boy who isn’t going to play into every stereotype on the big screen.
We need familiar faces to play the characters of a journey millions of teens go through every day. We need a romantic comedy for us, just like the ones straight teens get twice a month. We need light-heartedness in our media, not always just tragic and gloomy films.
And even if we didn’t need our representation to take center stage for once, we deserve to have a great love story just like everyone else.
this is what love, simon did to adults. imagine what it can do to the youth?? an actual group of kids and teens who are struggling with their identity? please think again before you vilify something that actually matters to other people. it’s not that hard pic.twitter.com/U6ct0nydtP
— love, vel (@GAYSPlER) March 10, 2018
Keiynan Lonsdale, who literally stars in LOVE SIMON, says working on the film gave him the courage to come out.
so maybe keep the "do queer teens REALLY NEED movies like this?" thinkpieces to yourself. https://t.co/TdMlAN9G0D
— Anthony Oliveira (@meakoopa) March 10, 2018