Saturday, February 7, 2009

Speaking of Tomboys: A Tribute to Kristy McNichol

Our community should acknowledge the contribution of Krisy McNichol to lesbian awareness in the 1970s. She is not officially out, I don't think, but, nonetheless, can you think of another tomboy who was so prominent--and popular--in that era of Anita Bryant's shameful, mainstreamed hatred toward gays? Kristy was a mega-star of the 1970s, beloved by everyone, and everyone, unless suffering from some kind of unfortunate perception disorder, could see she was a little baby dyke.

I loved Kristy McNichol even before she starred in her Emmy-award-winning role in the late 1970s television drama, Family. (Let's not forget, her character's name was "Buddy" on that show. Have you ever known a straight female called "Buddy"?) Before Family, Kristy was in a wonderful, unappreciated show called Apple's Way, which tragically lasted one season in 1973. In my opinion (as a six-year-old), it was some of the finest television ever. Other great baby-dyke-vibe roles McNichol played were in films such as Little Darlings with Tatum O'Neal and Only When I Laugh with Marsha Mason.

Once McNichol became a star and aged into her teenage years, things started to go downhill. She was known to party at Studio 54, which we can assume involved drugs. I think her inability to cope with her lesbianism in the homophobic world of Hollywood contributed to a nervous breakdown she suffered in the early 80s. Even though she had been an enormously popular actor (and pop singer with a remake of "He's So Fine"), and even though she was the first young actress to break the $1 million pay scale, her career never really recovered from B-films and uninspired television sitcoms. McNichol retired in 1998, at the age of 36, stating that she was suffering from bi-polar disorder and needed to take care of herself. The lesbian world sends its best wishes and gratitude to our brave Ms. McNichol.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Reasons to love Starbuck

She's a tomboy, and, frankly, there just aren't enough of them on TV.

No one says "frak me" quite like her.

She does not mind if she smells, as in: "One of us needs a bath."

She is complicated.

She is better than the boys.

She winks.

President Roslin has a crush on her.

And, apparently, so does everyone else.

She looks great in a uniform.

She smokes cigars.

She drinks too much. (A good quality in a fictional character. Unfortunately, does not translate to reality.)

Moby-Dick references are always appreciated.

She swaggers in a sports bra.