Star Trek: Discovery actor Anthony Rapp, set to portray space-fungus expert Lt. Stamets in the upcoming series, spoke with Metro Weekly in a new interview today about his thoughts on portraying one of the first regular in-universe gay character in the Trek franchise.

METRO WEEKLY: I don’t know what you can say about it, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t bring up Star Trek: Discovery.

RAPP: I can say that I’m in it, and that I’m really excited about it. I pretty much am not allowed to say anything else. I don’t even know if I’m allowed to say that. It’s so profoundly under wraps, which I completely understand and actually endorse. But I’m really excited.

MW: It’s been reported that the character you’re playing is gay.

RAPP: Yeah. Anything that’s been reported in the press, and has officially been confirmed by CBS, I can say.

MW: How does it feel, from a perspective of a gay man, to be playing the first ongoing gay character in Star Trek, Sulu’s recent revelation in the films notwithstanding?

RAPP: I’m honored. I’m also honored to be a part of a piece of work that’s part of the cultural pantheon. It’s kind of crazy that I get to be a part of something that means so much to so many people. It meant a lot to me, too. I’m thrilled and I’m honored to be the vehicle for this aspect of the story that’s being told.

Stamets is not Trek’s overall first gay regular character, as John Cho’s version of Hikaru Sulu was revealed to have a husband and daughter in last year’s Star Trek Beyond, and of course LGBT themes have been touched upon in episodes such as TNG’s “The Outcast” and DS9’s “Rejoined”.

You can read the full interview with Rapp, which also touches upon his early acting career and current non-Discovery projects, at Metro Weekly.

  • Connor Thomas

    Looking forward to this show! This has been long overdue in STAR TREK IMO. <3

    • Adam Bentley

      What has been overdue?

      • Jeffrey Walker

        Apparently he feels the need to have things re-affirmed by a Hollywood typical stereotypical half baked version of a member of a certain community. Gay, Christian, Foreign its always equally idiotic and craptastic.

      • Tone

        Do you need him to say the words “gay” and “character”?

        • GRiM

          If that is what he meant how is it overdue? This may be the first gay male but it’s not the first gay character. There has already been a
          gay character in Star Trek. Ezri Dax in mirror universe was gay.
          There have also been various bi-sexual characters like Jadzia Dax as
          well as Kira in mirror universe. There was also Asexual species.

          • Locutus

            I don’t really find Star Trek’s portrayal of characters as “gay” or “bisexual” in the Mirror universe that compelling. Frankly, it sends kind of the wrong message. Only in that twisted and evil mirror universe do we find our heroes can be gay or bisexual? It almost supports those who would say it is a “deviant” trait. I don’t think it was by any means intentional, and I love Mirror Kira in particular, but those examples are not exactly the paragon of Star Trek inclusiveness.

            Having a regular on the crew who identifies himself as gay is a step forward. I would agree that Star Trek has handled gay issues metaphorically in other episodes, but it has not portrayed it in the universally accepting atmosphere like in TOS of having a black woman on the bridge or an asian and Russian man at the helm. In that sense, Star Trek has been lagging.

          • Tone

            Agreed. The whole over-violent and S&M overtones in the later series was always slightly unsettling. This I think is what many fans are worried about, that we will have gay situations exaggerated and scenes aimed at provoking shock.

            I trust it won’t be like that. I don’t watch Trek for sex, I watch it because I want to escape in to my imagination.

          • Tone

            I can’t see what else he could have been eluding to. However your right about there being many gay and sexually ambiguous characters in all of Trek. I hope for this series to just present the gay characters in an everyday kind of way. They really don’t need to do much with the gay aspects, just let it evolve naturally, and get us invested in the characters. No need for a full frontal assault, because that will not do anyone any good.

          • M33

            “full frontal”

            LOL

          • Tone

            Oooh, I see what I did there! Pardon me…. hehehe

  • can someone put me into suspended animation until august, please? 🙂 CAN’T WAIT!!

  • MattR

    “A second chapter frees you up to take risks you could not in your first.

    #StarTrekDiscovery #StarTrek”

    That was tweeted out earlier today by @startrekdog

    https://twitter.com/startrekdog/status/844916443871432709

    This could imply a second season, or maybe just a second episode. I’m hoping it’s the former.

    • Locutus

      That is tantalizing!

    • DS9 is King

      OMG I hope this means Nicholas Myer is writing a second season now or soon.

      • Tone

        Erm, is he the only writer now?

        • Locutus

          Considering Star Trek Enterprise barely made it to a fourth season and that its cancellation has led Star Trek to be off the air for over ten years, I would say nothing is “guaranteed.” If this was on network TV, it probably wouldn’t make it to a second season. Since it is the flagship show for the CBS’s streaming product, it has a better chance of survival at least beyond season 1.

        • MattR

          Yeah, I figured that if Netflix licensing fees covered the entire production budget of the first season, and there’s no reason why Netflix wouldn’t want to continue paying for it, that it’s pretty easy for CBSAA to greenlight another season.

    • Tone

      Sounds like the Fuller influence will be watered down in season 2.

    • Locutus

      It occurs to me now that perhaps Nicholas Meyer is referring more generally to his involvement in Star Trek. It is essentially the “second chapter” of his involvement in Star Trek, his former movies being the first chapter. Perhaps he sees it as an opportunity to explore some ideas he could not when working on the movie franchise.

  • scooternva

    Anthony Rapp is a terrific actor *and* singer. Hopefully Dr. Stamets shares the same passion for opera as Worf and The Doctor and we’ll hear him belt out some tunes during his off-hours 🙂

    I have to admit that I am, as a gay man, just a wee bit nervous about how Dr. Stamets is portrayed. Let’s face it: Star Trek doesn’t have a good track record with LGBT representation. I’m really, really hoping that he’s not “the gay character”. Here’s hoping he’s shown to be just another character on the show, one who happens to be gay.

    I’m also *just* gossipy enough to idly wonder whether the casting of out actor Maulik Pancholy means anything here… will his character of Dr. Nambue hook up with Dr. Stamets? 🙂

    • StuUK

      I thought ‘the scene’ in Star Trek Beyond in which the movie declares Sulu as gay was handled perfectly; so casual… so no big deal… so everyday…
      The revelation wasn’t rammed down everyone’s throats; a sensationalism (and unrealism) that television and film have been guilty of for years.
      I hope the writer’s of Star Trek Discovery are wise enough to layer Rapp’s character with lots of personality and err… character and really resist the urge to sensationalise and hard sell his sexuality at every turn.

      • Jeffrey Walker

        That is exactly what I feel announcing it so early is their goal. And that is what I find stupid in modern tv. If they do that kinda crap I won’t watch. Stereotypes in TV that they shove down your throat are stupid.

      • Tone

        Your right, I did not care for what they did, but the way they handled it was very tasteful. I hope that is something that will be displayed in this new series, taste and restraint. And that includes all types of sexual behaviour. A little goes a long way.

    • SpaceCadet

      As a gay man myself, I’m excited by Trek’s first regular televised (streaming) gay character. But with Bryan Fuller’s influence on the direction of the series, and Anthony Rapp being an out gay man himself, I have confidence in the execution of the character. I doubt Rapp would stand to portray a gay character that wasn’t dignified and is some outdated stereotype.

    • Tone

      Maybe they will hate each other at first, but then…

  • Adam Bentley

    This may be the first “gay” male in TV series but is certainly the not first gay character in Star Trek at all. Ezri Dax (Mirror Universe) was the first openly gay character as far as I know. Before her there was various bi-sexual characters like Jadzia, the other female trill and various other species.

  • Sounds like he’s striking all the right notes! We’re honored to have you in the Trek family, Mr. Rapp.

  • TrekRules

    Again though, why is this such a big deal to people? Unless it was something show specific, you didn’t know the sexuality of the characters because it didn’t matter any more than their race or skin colour. For all we know, we have aleady seen hundreds of gay characters but just didn’t know because their sexuality had nothing to do with the story. I don’t care that they have a gay character, i just wish they would have kept it secret so when it was finally revealed in whatever story, it had some real impact instead of people watching the episodes complaining that they aren’t doing anything/enough with the gay character because they miss the point.

    • Tone

      It’s not a big deal, but those that like to hide behind their keyboards and attack strangers love this kind of thing.

    • Eric Cheung

      This is in line with the character traits they’ve promoted in advance of past shows.

      It’s also never been done in a franchise that was once prized for its ahead-of-the-curve diversity. It fulfills a promise Roddenberry made throughout his time on TNG. So it’s really 30 years overdue.

      And one’s sexuality often does have to do with the story, especially since almost every regular in Star Trek has had some kind of romance in the show. Tellingly, in fifty years, Sulu is one of the few that never had such a storyline shown on screen, until the fleeting glimpse in Star Trek Beyond.

      But really, the more we know about a character, no matter what the trait, the more insight we can have into how it informs his/her decision-making process, point of view, goals.

      So, yeah, any trait is a big deal, especially since we know little about the show anyway.

    • M33

      There was a great quote by Gene where when asked during TNG why he didn’t have any gay characters, his response was something to the effect of “nobody in Star Trek has to define themselves by these sorts of labels anymore. Star Trek is beyond this kind of thinking.”

      • Eric Cheung

        Well, there’s a difference between people who have same sex relationships and the labels themselves. It’s a bit of a dodge for Roddenberry to say that, when they could certainly portray same sex relationships without calling the characters gay.

        It actually runs counter to what Roddenberry’s said elsewhere about wanting to show LGBT characters on the show.

        • M33

          LOL
          Yeah, he was a man of many different opinions given his state of mind at the time.
          Unusual guy, but forever grateful for his imagination.

      • Muzer

        That’s pretty much not what we saw though. There were countless times in TNG when the existence of homosexuality was ignored. For example, in the scene where Guinan was explaining kissing to Lal, Whoopi Goldberg had to fight just to be able to say “when two people” instead of “when a man and a woman”. In The Outcast, which was supposed to be allegorical to homosexuality, the relationship both in-universe and out is between people who identify as male and female, gay people are never mentioned, and Riker’s discussions of sexuality again completely ignore the possibility that gay people exist.

        When we had the AIDS message show in Enterprise, besides being really ham-fisted, once again, it only ever alluded to homosexuality, without ever actually mentioning it, IIRC.

        There are admittedly some better outings, but even later on in DS9 which was probably least shit for this, it was still always “gay but with an excuse” (or the mirror universe), and even then usually lesbian rather than gay men (which people have always had less of a problem with, for whatever reason).

        Trek has had a piss poor record for LGBT, and it KNOWS it.

        THAT’S why it’s such a big deal to people — finally attempting to make amends for this very poor performance.

        • M33

          There is a really interesting movie about hollywood stereotyping gays called “The Celluloid Closet”.
          Worth seeing, and very interesting.

        • M33

          Most of those episodes, however, were after Gene was pretty much forced to turn over the creative reigns on Star Trek.
          After that is when we got the Berman-led episodes, and his perspectives.
          So when you look at seasons 1 and 2 of TNG, it still pretty much leaves everyone’s sexual preferences ambiguous and unstated (for the most part).
          Even that uncomfortable scene where that woman undressed Riker with her eyes in the pilot episodes doesn’t necessary make her straight–she could be bi.
          (And boy was that moment ever 80s).

          • SpaceCadet

            I loved that moment! It was very funny and very human!

      • Even the android was portrayed as heterosexual! 🙂

  • Jeffrey Walker

    Not needed and sad to see this come about. May be the first Star Trek Series I boycott.

  • Tone

    I get the feeling that this character might end up being comic relief. I mean, a fungus expert??? Surely this is not going to be a purely serious position?

    • Eric Cheung

      Why not? There are real mycologists. Why not an astromycologist? And in TOS especially, they’d often trot out a landing party member that had an extremely specific specialty. It’s just that this is the first time such a specific specialist is made a regular. And even if the character had a sense of humor about his own work, I can’t see how that would be a problem. It might be fun.

      • Tone

        No, I agree with you. It COULD be a serious character. But it just has the hallmarks of comic relief, and he will no doubt be a nerd or geek as well. It’s just a feeling. I hope that he is a good character, and that he is handled just like any other member of Starfleet.

        • Eric Cheung

          I see no grounds to make the assumption that he’ll be treated as a subject of ridicule, given Trek’s record in the past. The ship’s alien outsider characters, such as Spock, Data, Worf, Odo, the Doctor, T’Pol, and Phlox have been considered quirky by their colleagues, but never because of their occupation.

          If this weren’t a Trek show, maybe such an assumption might be safe to make, but I have faith that they’ll treat the character with respect. Though I’m not entirely familiar with the show, I suppose you could look to how Fuller and his staff wrote the forensics team on Hannibal. They definitely joked with each other, but were they made fun of?

          • Tone

            I hope your right.

        • Pedro Ferreira

          Egon.

          • Tone

            Got it!

  • Newdivide1701

    And if low grade morons who are worse than those that says the Kelvin timeline is an abomination says something idiotic about pushing the gay theme, remember this:

    By the time the 23rd century gets here, when someone admits they’re gay or bisexual, the attitude is, “Yeah, so?” Meaning they are not seen as diseased or sick, they are seen as ordinary people, and no one can fathom the idea of the struggles homosexuals had to endure just to have the right to marry.

    In fact by the time the 23rd century gets here homophobia, Islamophobia, even xenophobia will be shunned upon. There will be prejudices, but prejudice doesn’t rule the Federation. Despite the fact that Kirk did call Spock that pointy eared bastard, he then shot down Lt. Stiles for his bigotry over Spock.

    Not every world shares that idealism, after all the Vulcans did say that they were amazed over Spock’s accomplishments despite his disadvantage, namely Amanda Grayson, thereby allowing xenophobia to surface. Not to mention the Vulcan children who tormented Spock because he wasn’t fully Vulcan.

    And Worf whose hatred of the Romulans made him refuse to help that one Romulan they found on Galorndon Core. Michael Dorn himself hated that, but — Hopefully Donatra help quell his hatred — or even Ba’el.

    But by the time the 23rd century gets here, homosexuals will be seen as so different from heterosexuals.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2ccca70875f06e65ef88270c24a915ea2fb91b6e393a493151bf35ced5a4ad36.jpg

    • Ben

      How can you defend gays and Islam in the same sentence? I don’t give two hoots if someone is gay, them getting married will see gay gene’s go the way of the dinosaur, I don’t see this as good or bad just evolution.
      However the very same man who popularised the term Islamophobia has since stated he regrets it after doing massive polls on the percentage that want strict sharia law. No one is scared of Muslims, but the majority do find it offensive. It’s offensive to throw gays off buildings, it’s offensive to murder women for looking at another man the wrong way. This is what you defend when you defend Islam make no mistake about it.
      They will out breed the west and enforce sharia law onto non Muslims in a few more decades. To do nothing now is nothing short of creating a civil war. Bad ideas only survive with censorship. Only the best ideas survive long debate.

      • M33

        I didn’t know much about Islam until I read their book.
        And, yeah, they are sooo not the religion of peace.
        Buddhism, now that is a religion of peace.
        The Christian New Testament, specifically the words of Christ, which follow mostly Buddhist thinking, are peaceful.
        All the horrible, hateful (including anti-gay) rhetoric comes from the Hebrew Bible (or the Christian Old Testament), and the Koran puts its stock in continuing those traditions.
        Tolerance and acceptance is not giving non-muslims these choices:
        1) become Muslim by choice
        2) stay non-muslim and become subject to second-class & overly taxed citizen dhimmi laws
        or 3) death.
        No joke folks.
        Look it up.

        • The Science Fiction Oracle

          You kind of proved the opposite point of what you are trying to convey here — you essentially allow Christians a free pass because you infer that they can ignore the Old Testament, but you don’t give Muslims the same freedom to ignore some of the backward teachings in their book.

          We are all people, and I personally know Muslims who selectively don’t support the “bad parts” of their book, just like most Christians pretty much ignore the “bad” parts” of the Old Testament.

          • M33

            The difference is how the Koran and the Hadith are written. Many people will quote the “tolerant” passages of Islam as examples of moderate belief.
            The problem is that Islamic law follows whatever were the latest words of the prophet as the correct ones, even if they contradict whatever he had said in the past.
            Many of the intolerant passages are the most recent ones, most negating the tolerant ones that were said before.
            And Christians don’t get a free pass, per se, but Christ’s claims essentially were that all the really screwed up Hebrew bible laws didn’t matter if they conflicted with 1)loving God, 2) loving others as onesself.
            For Christians, like Muslims for their prophet, whatever was said most recently is what is to be followed.
            People throwing around Leviticus to be intolerant to gays is really not in line with actually BEING Christian.
            Plus, they are picking and choosing old testament, which is always dubious.
            I agree, the world would be better without religion, but the reality is that not all religions are equal when it comes to peace and tolerance.
            Read “Better Angels of Our Nature” by Steven Pinker. Hes an atheist Harvard professor, and one small part of his book explains a lot on the question of why civil rights did not blossom very well in the Islamic societies later on.
            It is also a great book on the decline of violence in the world.

          • The Science Fiction Oracle

            See my post above. Look back at the past 2000 years and tell me which religion, Christianity or Muslim, has the most blood on it’s hands?

            As I said above, it seems rather arbitrary to pick this particular moment in time, just because the “Christian West” happens to be “more enlightened” now, and tell the Muslims that they must immediately catch up to us?

            It’s wasn’t too long ago that Christianity could easily be argued to be the “bad religion” for all of it’s atrocities going back hundreds of years. Case in point the Crusades.

            Karma can sure be a bitch!

          • M33

            I suggest you read the Eurasian history prior to the Crusades.
            Prior to that, the Islamic Caliphate had conquered well into Europe and into India.
            Eventually both sides pushed back.
            Check it out. It is fairly fascinating.

            However, there is no good excuse for accepting violence, even if it is karma.
            Countless atrocities have been committed in the name of religion, worse so when they don’t actually follow their own teachings.
            I despise oppression in all its forms, including by religious “freedoms”.

            I think you’d enjoy the Pinker book. It is very much a worldwide history of violence and civilization that covers everything. Best 20 bucks I ever spent.

            BTW, I do enjoy our conversations.

          • The Science Fiction Oracle

            Good post! I enjoy our conversations as well.

        • Ben

          Yep, moderate Muslims support the extreme ones too. And I’ve even had a close friend go from very moderate to extreme almost overnight once his brother was arrested for planning attacks. Though I still hang out and openly debate with him. We both agree the west is screwing itself.

          • The Science Fiction Oracle

            No way your generalization pasters muster. Not the ones that I hang out with and work with — not even close

      • The Science Fiction Oracle

        LOL — you need to read Christian history. Same deal.

        Pot calling the kettle black.

        And your describing them like animals, using terms like “breeding”, is offensive, dude. Just saying….

        • Ben

          I’m not a Christian so my bias is null. All religions have some lesser problems. Though Christians separated Church and state hundreds of years ago so it matters very little what they think of the old testament.

          They sacrificed hundreds of thousands of lives ending slavery in the west. Muslims still have millions of slaves today and that’s not including forced and underage marriages.

          What are the effects on DNA when frequently marrying first cousins for close to a hundred generations? The Koran says it’s OK so it must be even today in the west right, it’s a bit rude of us to expect them to adopt our science and culture right?

          My point with the “high birth rates” was that the west will become Islamic within decades unless it’s banned from spreading like they have done in Japan. Any religion that has a death penalty for leaving or tax for not joining is a bad idea.

          But lets have it your way, what will be the benefits for women by having more Islamic countries? If your going to say they will change the religion just for us and not introduce more sharia law as they increase to a majority then name an example of this happening in ANY country in the past?

          I don’t think this is the place to get much further into it and I’ve avoided throwing crime and rape statistics at you but look up independent survey’s on what they think of Sharia law, it’s the vast majority that want it.

          • Muzer

            My god. I don’t even know how to respond to this without dirtying my browser history looking for evidence.

            On separation of church of state: Err, Bosnia-Herzegovina? Kosovo? Turkey? There are plenty of secular Muslim-majority countries. In fact, I visited Bosnia twice and didn’t even realise it was Muslim-majority until I looked it up just now. On the other hand, I live in a non-secular Christian nation. It’s just we’re living in a pretty moderate time for Christianity thanks to the political stability of the areas where it exists.

            On the effects on DNA when marrying first cousins: yes, there is a culture of that in some Islamic nations, just as there is in other non-Islamic nations and religions — Mormonism, for example. This does have a mild effect on health, yes (apparently about as much as a woman having a baby in her 40s). It’s probably something we could do without, but it’s kind of surprising you’re making such a big deal out of it, especially since, if you’re moaning about high birth rates, surely you should be happy about first cousin marriage as this causes more fatal birth defects…

            And as for statistics — here’s one about British Muslims. I’ll be using this poll which was very thorough, and is frequently misquoted in the media: http://www.icmunlimited.com/polls/icm-muslims-survey-for-channel-4/ . Twelve in 1081 wanted to live in a segregated Muslim area subject to Sharia law. That’s 1%. Some 29% said there should be separation in “some” areas like schooling and law —- which could just mean that most of them want to go to Muslim schools, which (given we have a lot of faith schools in the UK — I went to Christian schools even as an atheist) seems fair enough to me. In the question about there being areas in Britain where Sharia law should be introduced, 23% did express some level of support, and that’s definitely higher than I’d like; but 43% expressed some level of opposition. That’s a LOT of Muslims who are happy with our being a Christian-in-theory-but-secular-in-practice nation. So, we’re talking about a minority of a minority here — and so even if you do decide that they’re all breeding like rabbits, and we did become a Muslim-majority nation, we’d STILL have a majority opposing Sharia law.

            Now, personally, I feel the world would be better off without ANY religion. But I also feel there’s no particular way you can claim that Islam is inherently particularly worse. It just so happens to overlap with what is a very volatile region politically at the moment, which of course inspires things like fundamentalism and extremism; just as similar situations have done in Christianity, hell, even Buddhism, in the past. People should be taken on their own merits, and not taken to be all just like some extremist minority of some 1.5 billion people.

            I’d much rather live in a country of moderate British Muslims than a country of people like you.

          • The Science Fiction Oracle

            “But I also feel there’s no particular way you can claim that Islam is inherently particularly worse. It just so happens to overlap with what is a very volatile region politically at the moment, which of course inspires things like fundamentalism and extremism; just as similar situations have done in Christianity, hell, even Buddhism, in the past.”

            EXACTLY.

            As I said, Karma is a bitch, isn’t it? LOL

          • The Science Fiction Oracle

            Muslim’s are behind Christians in today’s world in terms of human rights – that is a fact. But it seems rather arbitrary to pick this particular moment in time, just because the “Christian West” happens to be “more enlightened” now, and tell the Muslims that they must immediately catch up to us?

            It’s wasn’t too long ago that Christianity could easily be argued to be the “bad religion” for all of it’s atrocities going back hundreds of years. Case in point the Crusades.

            Karma can sure be a bitch!

      • SpaceCadet

        I don’t understand what you mean by “if someone is gay, them getting married will see gay gene’s go the way of the dinosaur…” Um, that’s not how the gay gene is passed on. I’m gay, my parents are straight. As long as straight people continue to reproduce there will be gay people. And it’s really only western society that cares so much to label someone as gay or straight or bi. Other cultures understand sexuality is a spectrum. Two people of the same sex, say two males, can experiment and have sex or just do it because it’s convenient or pleasurable, and still not identify as gay and remain having a preference for the opposite sex.

      • Are you actually saying that treating all Muslims as terrorists and proponents of world-wide sharia law will help make the future a better place? It’s self-defeating. “Out breed the west”? Seriously? Muslims are some sort of breeding factory intent on taking over the world and imposing sharia law? You disgust me, and the drivel that you’re spewing only makes the world a worse place for all to live in and endangers current and future generations.

        I don’t think you understand genetics. Are you saying that gay gene’s are only perpetuated if two gay people have a child? I’m guessing most gay people are born to heterosexual parents. You sir are an idiot.

    • The Science Fiction Oracle

      “But by the time the 23rd century gets here, homosexuals will be seen as so different from heterosexuals.”

      I completely disagree. By the 23rd century, this will be no big deal, and the differences will hardly be noticed.

      Your post started off great, but your conclusion I completely disagree with.

  • trojoe

    Let me start by saying that I’ve been an out and proud homosexual since I was 14.

    That said, this concerns me.
    I would hope, that centuries from now, labels like gay and straight would have been long retired.
    The fact that there are headlines about a “gay” character in Star Trek gives me pause.
    But I’ll remain hopeful that his sexuality doesn’t become a side show or a nudge, nudge, know-what-I-mean.

    • Eric Cheung

      It’s possible they won’t use the word in the show, but show that would identify as LGBT in the 21st century exist in the 23rd as people. In all probability, people would just guess that everyone’s on a spectrum similar to the Kinsey Scale, but that we’d actually see some of the relationships characters on different points of the spectrum have in an organic manner.

    • jstimson

      Had the internet been present in the 60’s we probably would have seen a lot of talk about a black woman being part of the bridge crew.

      And the nice thing about TOS is that it was just presented as normal and not called out. I hope Discovery can follow suite.

    • The Science Fiction Oracle

      Well said!!!

  • Fiery Little One

    Yeah, as some have said, I’m a little concerned (now that I actually sit down to think about this) that everybody’s making a big deal about this. The characters will probably treat his preferences as an afterthought. We should too.

    • The Science Fiction Oracle

      Yea, this should not be a big news story or plot point.

      Maybe it’s just me, but this seems so 1990’s? But then again, we have a president who is so 1950’s. 🙁

      • Fiery Little One

        Looking at it like that does balance things out a bit.

    • I think it is a big deal. If Star Trek had never had a black character until now and they cast one, I think that would be an important moment. If there had never been a female character until now and they cast one, that would be an important moment. Any argument about why it doesn’t matter “in-universe”, is really missing the point of a large percentage of Star Trek, IMO. Also, the argument that this should have been a big deal in the 80s or 90s, but not now, is really further emphasizing how strange Star Trek has been for its lack of openly gay characters (or LGBTQ in general), and why it actually IS important now. Star Trek has always been a show in which a diverse viewership should be able to identify with the characters.

      It’s not like Lt. Stamets is going to walk around declaring that he is gay. It *won’t* be emphasized at all in-universe, but it’s important out of universe.

      • Fiery Little One

        Fair enough.

  • MidnightEkaki

    Id prefer they casually made the character gay in the series rather than labeling him ‘the gay character’ but because its important I understand why they feel the need to. I’m hoping he’s also not the only gay character, because he needs someone to be with right? I’m trusting them to handle it well.
    Another thing I personally will be happy to see in regards to sexuality as is hopefully no more heteronormitivity which kind of annoyed me in previous ST series. And by that I mean not assuming sexualities to be heterosexual when there’s no good reasoning. One example is that you would assume Data was straight with his few encounters with females, but why would Soong program him that way when sexuality shouldn’t matter in the future? Let alone for a robot? (why program him with sexuality at all actually…) I know its because at the time it was safer to make everyone straight even if it didn’t make sense, but it will just be nice to see this sort of thing handled better if it ever comes up.

    • Eric Cheung

      There’s no evidence they won’t do that. The only reasons we know him as “the gay character” now is because they’re naturally tight-lipped about any other details about any of the characters and because only now is the campaign to have some representation from the LGBT community successful. It’s the real-world placeholder description of the character, not the in-universe one.

    • The Science Fiction Oracle

      Whether you believe the percent of the LBGT’s on the planet is 2% or 5%, it still follows that the vast majority of people are going to treat people they meet in a heteronormitive manner at first, regardless of how progressive they are socially and politically.

      If one out of 30 people adopt children, does that mean that people will start asking every parent they meet if their kids are birth children or adopted children? Even if you were to say that “well they should ask,” they still won’t.

      It’s a numbers game based on human perceptions. Barring a massive increase in the percentage of people on the planet who are LBGT, this is not going to change. We don’t have to agree with it or like it, but it is what it is and is unlikely to ever change.