Disney Channel makes history with first coming out story of gay character
On “Andi Mack”, Disney Channel introduced its first openly gay major character with a storyline on his sexuality.
The show featured an emotional coming out scene during its second season, where Andi’s (Peyton Elizabeth Lee) best friend Cyrus (Joshua Rush) reveals that he has a crush on one of their male friends, Jonah (Asher Angel).
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The cast, which consists of teenagers, have expressed their support for the storyline and their gratitude to fans.
“We include. We support. We love. Everyone. No matter what,” wrote the 13-year-old Lee on Instagram.
Rush said, “I’m overwhelmed by all the support for tonight’s season two premiere of #AndiMack. I couldn’t be prouder to be part of a series that is paving the way for acceptance, love and support.”
They also used the hashtag #yourenodifferent.
The series, written by “Lizzie McGuire” creator Terri Minsky, is Disney’s attempt to compete against edgier shows on Netflix.
Gary Marsh, president of Disney Channels Worldwide told New York Times that in seeking to update themselves, they searched for “stories that matter, that deal with more complex issues, that are emotional, resonate longer.”
Even the title character has an unconventional backstory: The series starts out with Andi discovering that her older sister is her mother.
“’Andi Mack’s is a story about tweens figuring out who they are. Everyone involved in the show takes great care in ensuring that it’s appropriate for all audiences and sends a powerful message about inclusion and respect for humanity,” Disney Channel said in a statement. JB
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