Glee

The episode, as the title suggests, is about having sex the first time. Virginity is depicted as something that is given or taken, with the individual with power doing the taking. Lea Michelle’s character even says something along the lines of “you’re going to get something that no one else can say they got,” reinforcing the idea that the man takes something that the woman has to give up. Since both these characters are depicted as being virgins, Lea Michelle is also ‘taking his virginity,’ not just the other way around.

The episode also suggests that intimacy is a prerequisite to losing your virginity, in both the heterosexual and homosexual sexual encounters. From our discussions, we know that intimacy is closely tied to ‘the end’ goal of marriage and children. This implies that you must lose your virginity to ‘the one’ that you end up with, which almost always is never the case. The fact that society frames these broken relationships as ‘failures’ shapes its citizens’ belief system as well.

In addition, this episode reminded me of the conversation we had in class about innocence and losing innocence. Virginity in our society is synonymous with innocence, and you are no longer ‘pure’ once you lose it. Yet this ‘purity’ is only applied to women. Would like to interrogate this idea more.

In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue

“Moonlight” shows depictions of black masculinity and what can happen as a result of deviating from that role. From the start, Chiron does not play into the stereotypes of black masculinity, leading him to be bullied from a young age until adolescence. Kevin, on the other hand, is also attracted to women, making it easier for him to play a heteronormative role in school while hiding his queer identity. This is because blackness is not something you can hide yet queerness is.

Vaught talks about the state categorizing students into the bully and the bullied. In “Moonlight”, when Kevin is forced to hit Chiron, Kevin plays the role of the bully and Chiron plays the role of the bullied. They are both queer black men, but Kevin takes on the role of “perpetrator” while Chiron takes on the role of “victim.” We then see what happens when Chiron does take on the role of “perpetrator” when hits a fellow student with a chair. At that point, his queerness becomes invisible while his blackness determines how the institution treats him.

To the state, only White queerness can be visible. Black queerness cannot exist in our current institution since people who are both black and queer will only be visible as “black” and their queerness will not be acknowledged. Therefore, when anti-bullying legislation is made to protect queer youth, it cannot protect non-White queerness.