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Watched season 3 of Orange is the New Black and really enjoyed it. It's an exceptionally good show, telling lots of stories you don't often see on television.

One thing that puzzles me about it is that, for all their wide perspective and dedication to depicting people without sufficient representation, the show simply refuses to refer to "bisexuality." It's really strange. They have a number of bi characters on it-- Lorna Morello, for example, and of course the lead character Piper. But they never use that word.

There's a bit of a running gag about how Piper's people seem to be unable to understand that she can be attracted to either of those genders. When she's with Alex, they all continually ask if that means she's gay now. On top of that, the lesbian characters bitch about how much it sucks to fall for "straight girls" like her. It's a pretty clear and seemingly accurate depiction of biphobia. I get that. But I feel like the fact that NOBODY-- not even Piper herself --can seem to actually call it for the bisexuality that it is comes off as super weird. I mean, she must have heard the term somewhere, right? Why wouldn't she use it to respond to the people who want to box her into one thing or the other? It's almost like the SHOW is biphobic, with its weird refusal to give the obvious name to the situation.

That seems weird, given how much the show seems to embrace the notion that people don't always fit into your little boxes. The only other thing I can think of is if they're trying some weird foreshadowing for the idea that Piper ISN'T actually bi-- that she really IS gay, and that eventually she's going to completely give up the pretense of being interested in men at all. And her refusal to assert herself as bi is a small way of indicating that label doesn't really represent her.

I actually think that's a little silly, even if that's what they're going for. People can be different things at different stages of their life, and no one stage is necessarily less true than any other just because it was transitory. Refusing to use the term bi comes off to me as weirdly biphobic in the same manner as the biphobia of characters in the show.


Posts from This Journal by “tv” Tag


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jun. 18th, 2015 02:07 am (UTC)
Have wondered about that quite a bit and am not sure what to make of it. Since 2+ seasons without any use of the word "bisexual" is a bit deliberate. Piper seems pretty unambiguously bisexual. ("I like hot girls. I like hot boys. I like hot people. What can I say? I'm shallow.")

I totally get the biphobia in the characters, and distrust of bisexuality in the lesbian community. ("you'll just go back to dating boys eventually"). I'm guilty of that somewhat myself. Not mentioning the word at all (except once, I think) is a bit too deliberate.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

About Me

My name is Phoebe. I'm Boston area theater professional and English professor focused in writing, acting, directing, and modeling. I'm known for having lots of interests, lots of opinions about those interests, and a very high estimation of the value thereof. This blog is for talking about whatever's on my mind, from my daily life to my activities to musing on any number of abstract topics. Thanks for taking the time to read.

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Upcoming Productions:

MRS. HAWKING part 2 and 3

at the Watch City Steampunk Festival 2016

presented by The Chameleon's Dish

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts

at 2PM


Base Instruments
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at 6PM

Saturday, May 13th 2017
at 274 Moody Street, Waltham, MA

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"The Tailor at Loring's End" screenplay
Quarter Finalist in the Final Draft Big Break Screenwriting Competition 2013

"Adonis" screenplay
Top Ten Percent in the Bluecat Screenwriting Contest 2015

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