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"Police Story: The Ripper" (1974)  Darren McGavin and Michael Cole  hunt down a serial killer who is murdering gay men in this tv version of "Cruising"   McGavin plays the more liberal cop who teaches Cole some lessons on gay tolerance. Cole over uses the f word so much and over does the gay hatred that I thought at the end he was either going to turn out to be the killer or come out as a closet case .   We do get  fair cross section of gay suspects, a psychologist, a butch cowboy, and the effeminate head of modeling agency.  . The show is well written and directed . You can see it on  very good print on You Tube

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I'm glad you started this thread.

One that comes to mind is Season 6 Episode 9 of Hunter with Fred Dryer & Stepfanie Kramer.  

When Hunter & McCall investigate a string of homosexual murders, a local painter confesses to committing all but one of them.

Hunter may currently be viewed on Amazon Prime.

***

Also, I was thinking about certain episodes of Brothers & Sisters which starred Sally Field from 2006-2011. The fifth and final season has two main gay couples. There's a young couple played by Matthew Rhys and Luke Macfarlane who are trying to start a family with a surrogate. And then there's an older couple played by Ron Rifkin and Richard Chamberlain who are both HIV positive and reconnecting after years apart. We find out that Chamberlain's character had infected Rifkin's character years ago, which is what caused the rift in their relationship.

Both of these storylines on Brothers & Sisters are handled with sensitivity and intelligence; and the show won a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Drama Series that season.

Brothers & Sisters may currently be viewed on Hulu.

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1 hour ago, TopBilled said:

I'm glad you started this thread.

One that comes to mind is Season 6 Episode 9 of Hunter with Fred Dryer & Stepfanie Kramer.  

When Hunter & McCall investigate a string of homosexual murders, a local painter confesses to committing all but one of them.

Hunter may currently be viewed on Amazon Prime.

***

Also, I was thinking about certain episodes of Brothers & Sisters which starred Sally Field from 2006-2011. The fifth and final season has two main gay couples. There's a young couple played by Matthew Rhys and Luke Macfarlane who are trying to start a family with a surrogate. And then there's an older couple played by Ron Rifkin and Richard Chamberlain who are both HIV positive and reconnecting after years apart. We find out that Chamberlain's character had infected Rifkin's character years ago, which is what caused the rift in their relationship.

Both of these storylines on Brothers & Sisters are handled with sensitivity and intelligence; and the show won a GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Drama Series that season.

Brothers & Sisters may currently be viewed on Hulu.

I got the idea from your post on "The Streets of San Francisco" and yes there are many examples of gay images on tv

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8 minutes ago, jaragon said:

I got the idea from your post on "The Streets of San Francisco" and yes there are many examples of gay images on tv

Good, I'm glad. 

We could probably also discuss gay characters on soap operas.

As the World Turns under the guidance of Doug Marland as headwriter featured the first contract role for a gay male character in 1988. Marland was gay in real life. But the actor who played Hank Elliott, his name's Brian Starcher, was not gay. He had screen tested for another role and didn't get it. Then Marland and the executive producer approached him about playing daytime's first regular gay male character.

It was still the Reagan era and there were many gay men dying of AIDS at that time. But the network (CBS) and production company (Procter & Gamble) were very specific on what could and could not be depicted with Hank on camera.

For starters, his lover remained off screen living in another state. That meant Hank did not have any love interest on the show like the heterosexual characters. And thus, no screen kisses for him. He was a fashion designer which was a bit cliched, but Starcher had a deep voice and looked very masculine plus he didn't play it as a stereotype even if it technically was.

I think Hank lasted on the show for about 18 months. Ultimately he left town to go take care of his lover who was dying from AIDS off screen.

The main point of Hank's story, if I recall correctly, was about whether the people of Oakdale could accept him being openly gay in their sleepy town. Also, he had befriended a sixteen year old boy who was not gay but had a drinking problem. While Hank took the boy under his wing, some of the more catty characters on the show gossiped that Hank had an unhealthy possibly sexual interest in the boy.

It was a thought-provoking storyline. After Hank left town in late 1989 and was written out of As the World Turns, I don't think there was another regular gay male character on the American soaps until the 2000s.

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8 minutes ago, jaragon said:

Steve Carrington was the gay son on "Dynasty" - that meeting at the door should have ended with a kiss

 

The interesting thing here is that Jack Coleman who played Steven is straight in real life. But Gordon Thomson, who played Adam, is gay. So it is rather ironic for Thomson to utter that slur in the first scene.

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There were two gay characters who worked at Ken Olin's ad agency (he didn't own it).  One of them played Andrea's father in Devil Wears Prada (I think Nigel is supposed to be gay).  There have been gay cops on the original Law and Order (with Chris Noth and George D.).  HBO made a movie And The Band Played On about the AIDS epidemic.  Richard Gere played (I think) a Broadway producer who succumbs to AIDS.  Another great movie is Long Time Companion.  All My Children did a very good job with Bianca realizing she was gay.  Interesting, on reality shows, for example cooking shows, HGTV shows, there are often same sex couples.  I sometimes get angry when someone notes that an actor who plays a hetero is gay and vice versa (same with women).  A good actor or actress is a good actor or actress.   I forgot about the movie Consenting Adults.  I think there was an early movie where Hal Holbrook may have been gay and had to come out to his family.

I still remember Billy Crystal's character on Soap - he was just one part of a couple of large, "crazy" family.

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20 minutes ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

There were two gay characters who worked at Ken Olin's ad agency (he didn't own it).  One of them played Andrea's father in Devil Wears Prada (I think Nigel is supposed to be gay).  There have been gay cops on the original Law and Order (with Chris Noth and George D.).  HBO made a movie And The Band Played On about the AIDS epidemic.  Richard Gere played (I think) a Broadway producer who succumbs to AIDS.  Another great movie is Long Time Companion.  All My Children did a very good job with Bianca realizing she was gay.  Interesting, on reality shows, for example cooking shows, HGTV shows, there are often same sex couples.  I sometimes get angry when someone notes that an actor who plays a hetero is gay and vice versa (same with women).  A good actor or actress is a good actor or actress.   I forgot about the movie Consenting Adults.  I think there was an early movie where Hal Holbrook may have been gay and had to come out to his family.

I still remember Billy Crystal's character on Soap - he was just one part of a couple of large, "crazy" family.

The reason I mentioned Gordon Thomson being gay in real life is that I found it interesting, because on Dynasty he played a sometimes vicious homophobic character. Thomson did not publicly come out until many years later, in 2017. So I wonder what it was like for him to get those scripts and have to say those lines. Even what he thinks of it now when he rewatches the episodes.

The show with Ken Olin you are referencing is thirtysomething. David Marshall Grant played the gay man on that series, and he was not a regular but a recurring character. 

The TV movie starring Hal Holbrook as a gay man coming out to his family is THAT CERTAIN SUMMER (1972). Martin Sheen played his lover.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/That_Certain_Summer

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Joe Penny  😍  plays a closeted police officer who risks coming out to solve a crime in "Lou Grant"( 1979)  Season 3 Episode 1  Penny gives very good performance  .  They go out of their way to show Penny as butch as possible, lifting weights, at a shooting range even coaching a kid's sports team but as the show progresses his sensitive side comes out and he goes to explain how he is forced to sacrifice his personal life.  He never does anything gay with another man ( hard to believe a guy who look like Penny would not have boyfriend) .  This episode must have really affected me when it first ran. I could not get it out of my mind and clearly remember entire scenes.  I wonder because this was one of the first time I had seen a young gay man presented in such a positive way. You can see it on ok print on You tube

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2 hours ago, jaragon said:

Joe Penny  😍  plays a closeted police officer who risks coming out to solve a crime in "Lou Grant"( 1979)  Season 3 Episode 1  Penny gives very good performance  .  They go out of their way to show Penny as butch as possible, lifting weights, at a shooting range even coaching a kid's sports team but as the show progresses his sensitive side comes out and he goes to explain how he is forced to sacrifice his personal life.  He never does anything gay with another man ( hard to believe a guy who look like Penny would not have boyfriend) .  This episode must have really affected me when it first ran. I could not get it out of my mind and clearly remember entire scenes.  I wonder because this was one of the first time I had seen a young gay man presented in such a positive way. You can see it on ok print on You tube

That's an interesting comment. Sometimes we forget how much television can make an impression on us when we're younger.

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I've been having a Dack Rambo afternoon. On YouTube I found a TV movie he made from 1978, which was actually a pilot for a short-lived series he starred in. It was interesting to see him at that stage, since I mostly remember him from Dallas which was in the mid-80s. I then found some clips of him on YouTube from when he did a role on All My Children and later a role on Another World. He aged very well and looks fantastic in the 1990/91 episodes I watched of him on Another World. Such a shame he died of AIDS in 1994.

You can see his goodness come through in all of his screen work. He had a wonderful voice and all of his line readings are on the money.

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11 hours ago, TopBilled said:

I've been having a Dack Rambo afternoon. On YouTube I found a TV movie he made from 1978, which was actually a pilot for a short-lived series he starred in. It was interesting to see him at that stage, since I mostly remember him from Dallas which was in the mid-80s. I then found some clips of him on YouTube from when he did a role on All My Children and later a role on Another World. He aged very well and looks fantastic in the 1990/91 episodes I watched of him on Another World. Such a shame he died of AIDS in 1994.

You can see his goodness come through in all of his screen work. He had a wonderful voice and all of his line readings are on the money.

Rambo was a sexy looking man.

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I remember Dack Rambo on All My Children.  He had a twin brother and I believe they were on a show with Loretta Young.  It is very sad and remember it used to be called GRIDS or something like that.  Arthur Ashe, one of my favorite people, died from AIDS because he needed a blood transfusion and did the young boy (Ryan something?) that had hemophilia (he was championed by Elton John).  The mention of Joe Penney and the typical depiction of women who are lesbians being "butch" is classic stereotyping.  A man with a high-pitched voice can be straight and several gorgeous women and men are bisexual or homosexual.  

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11 hours ago, TopBilled said:

That's an interesting comment. Sometimes we forget how much television can make an impression on us when we're younger.

That is so true but this also shows the importance of having positive gay images on screen- this was specially rare back in the 70's-80's.  I kept trying to find this particular episode and was convince it was from another series- and yes and it's not just because I obviously had a crush on Joe Penny😍

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4 minutes ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

I remember Dack Rambo on All My Children.  He had a twin brother and I believe they were on a show with Loretta Young.  It is very sad and remember it used to be called GRIDS or something like that.  Arthur Ashe, one of my favorite people, died from AIDS because he needed a blood transfusion and did the young boy (Ryan something?) that had hemophilia (he was championed by Elton John).  The mention of Joe Penney and the typical depiction of women who are lesbians being "butch" is classic stereotyping.  A man with a high-pitched voice can be straight and several gorgeous women and men are bisexual or homosexual.  

I think the  point of the episode was too show that a gay man could look and act like a "regular guy" of course there is nothing average about Joe Penny.

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1 hour ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

I remember Dack Rambo on All My Children.  He had a twin brother and I believe they were on a show with Loretta Young.   

I never watched All My Children during the time Dack Rambo was on it...I believe it was in 1983, before he did Dallas. I never watched Another World either since we mainly watched CBS soaps in our house, and AW was on NBC.

Fans of Another World have painstakingly uploaded almost every episode of AW on YouTube from the years 1988-1992 which are supposed to be the best years of the show. I read that '88-91 was rerun on SoapNet, then '91-92, which includes a lot of Dack Rambo's episodes, was available on Hulu. So the picture quality is very good. 

Of course it's all a time capsule now but it's fascinating to watch the stories and the performances and to see someone like Dack in his very last television role.

His twin brother, named Dirk, was killed in a car accident in 1967. I don't think Dack ever got over the loss. They are buried together in their hometown.

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1 minute ago, jaragon said:

A well made for tv movie about  a young man dealing with AIDs

 

One of the problems with network television, which still persists today, is that they seldom have gay or out-gay people playing gay characters. Like it's "better" almost if the person playing gay is straight in real life and not really gay at all. Then we have out-gay people that are expected to play straight characters to feed into the fantasy that if they can play a heterosexual so well, then maybe they are not really gay after all.

There's a weird double standard in Hollywood about the casting and playing of LGBT roles. That hasn't changed since the 1980s.

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Personally, I can't be bothered with who is straight and who is gay.  On the short-lived James Patterson-based CBS drama that Alan Cumming starred in, he was gay (and he is gay in real life).  However, Mario Bello on NCIS is either gay or bisexual in real life (her partner is a French chef), and she just doesn't click with Mark Harmon.  For an interesting series using transgender and gay characters, has anyone watched Pose (I think that is the name) on FX?

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I believe in casting an actor who is right for the role. If there is an out gay actor who can play the character than use him but if a straight actor is better for the role then why not choose the straight actor.  Acting is about pretending after all- this has become an issue in recent times- specially from projects involving transgender characters- some big name stars have dropped out of projects because of it- now I wonder will the producers find money if they cast a transgender unknown?

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6 hours ago, chaya bat woof woof said:

Personally, I can't be bothered with who is straight and who is gay. 

Well, and there are people who are more "fluid" like Anne Heche and they seem to go back and forth.

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2 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Well, and there are people who are more "fluid" like Anne Heche and they seem to go back and forth.

I really don't buy this sexual fluidity thing- yes there are people who are bi-sexual- and yes that makes sense- but this going back and forth thing is not something I'm buying- well maybe in females but not in males.

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