Love, Simon: The Connection Between Homosexuality and Femininity in Media

Love, Simon: The Connection Between Homosexuality and Femininity in Media

Photo by Daniel Roe on Unsplash

Every year on June 1st, I sit down in my comfort cave (AKA my bedroom) and re-watch the movie Love, Simon. I think about the first time I watched this movie. 2018. AMC Theaters. Sitting with my two closest friends. Not out. Just watching a movie that meant more to me than I could ever admit. As I sit here and watch Love, Simon this year, as an out queer person, the nostalgia hits me harder than it ever has before.

Love, Simon is not your average teenage queer coming out story. It is so much more. It’s a story about keeping your identity a secret, not because your friends and family will disapprove, but because you don’t want to be seen as a different person than you have been perceived all your life.

This film is an exploration of growing up with a gigantic secret, figuring out who you are, learning the ropes when it comes to femininity and masculinity, and how to navigate relationships of all kinds.

To start off this analysis, there are many scenes where Jack Spier (Simon’s father) made some remarks from a heteronormative standpoint. In one of the first few scenes, Jack walks in on Simon looking at his computer and makes a remark about Simon secretly looking at pictures of Gigi Hadid. He also makes several comments about porn and Simon’s past girlfriends throughout the movie, pushing the heteronormative agenda onto his son.

As for the juxtaposition of femininity and masculinity in this film, I present to you Ethan, the only out gay student at Creekwood high. Compared to Simon’s masculine clothing aesthetic, Ethan is the polar opposite with his scarves and bobbedhaircut.

Later on in the film, Ethan is approached by some jocks at a football game and asked why he was even there, insinuating that as a feminine gay man, he must not like football. I found this intriguing because feminine women go to football games all the time and don’t receive much hassle, so what makes a man’s femininity so different from a woman’s femininity?

Keeping with Ethan’s narrative, toward the end of the film, Ethan confides in Simon, telling him all about his mother who is ashamed of her son, lying to his grandparents about all the girls he is dating. Ethan notes that his mom uses the reasoning that they are old and religious, but Ethan can tell that his mother would prefer a straight son over a gay son.

Overall, Love, Simon is a great film to capture the queer experience. From questioning societal norms, using pseudo names online to speak your truth, not wanting people to think differently of you, the loneliness of having such a massive secret, to queer rage for having to experience so much all at once.

I would like to conclude this article by reminding all my readers that you are not alone and that I am always open to chatting. You are still you, reader, no matter how you identify and what you keep public or secret. You are loved.

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