After reading Gross, Gamson, and Croteau, Hoynes, and Milan’s perspectives about sexual minorities portrayal in media, I started reflecting on my own experience with watching TV and what types of representations I see of LGBTQ individuals in media today. Immediately, I thought about NBC, who recently picked up two new pilots for TV shows that revolve around gay couples. The most hyped show, The New Normal, is about a gay couple and their process of surrogacy to establish their family. However, if you look at the creator of the show, Ryan Murphy, it is the same creator of Fox’s hit show Glee, which is one of the most popular primetime programs to portray a homosexual relationship. The fact that Murphy is evolving into a go-to creator of gay television somewhat proves Gross’s point that we think we are making tremendous progress as a society while, in fact, the actual progress is not so in reality. Though NBC picked up another pilot of the 13 they chose that portrays gays with children, it seems as though this may be a desperate attempt by a desperate network to appeal to a niche audience. I just wonder: why now? Why has NBC not ventured into broadcasting scripted television with gay leads who have a family? And why only when the network is struggling to survive? While I do applaud the exploration of the gay family in modern times on national network television, I pose the question: will this show succeed? Is America is ready to handle a program revolved around a gay family? I will be closely following the progress that this show makes and whether or not it can gain any traction among mainstream America versus solely the niche LGBTQ population.
“The New Normal:” Homosexuality in TV