Power Rangers Reboot Features Gay Superhero [VIDEO]

The Hollywood Reporter has the scoop:

Power Rangers is breaking down a barrier no superhero movie has before. The Lionsgate reboot of the ’90s children’s TV show is the first big-budget superhero movie to feature an LGBT protagonist.

During Power Rangers‘ second act, there’s a scene in which the titular heroes learn that the Yellow Ranger Trini (Becky G) is coming to terms with her sexual orientation, with one character assuming she’s having “boyfriend problems,” and soon realizing that perhaps she’s actually having “girlfriend problems.” It’s a small moment, but one director Dean Israelite calls “pivotal” for the entire film.

“For Trini, really she’s questioning a lot about who she is,” Israelite tells The Hollywood Reporter. “She hasn’t fully figured it out yet. I think what’s great about that scene and what that scene propels for the rest of the movie is, ‘That’s OK.’ The movie is saying, ‘That’s OK,’ and all of the kids have to own who they are and find their tribe.”

It’s interesting that this news comes out just a couple of days before the movie opens, giving the wingnuts little time to organize yet another failed boycott. It also seems possible that Power Rangers publicists took a look at the grosses for Beauty And The Beast and decided to hype that “small moment.”

  • bambinoitaliano

    Boycott!!! I think the movie producer of this sure flop could use the publicity more than OMM.

    • Todd20036

      Don’t be so cynical. PowerRangers is quite a successful franchise. This movie may not win an Academy Award, but people will take their kids to see it.

      • Mikey

        not if it has “teh gheys” in it!

        • Todd20036

          A few of the RWNJs won’t. Everyone else will.

    • Rambie

      Why I’m not surprised they didn’t leak this before. The whole, “There is no such thing as bad publicity” thing.

    • Gustav2

      The sad thing for OMM is there are fewer and fewer movie theaters in rural American. Since the big sort of religious conservatives to rural areas (AKA white flight), the evil more secular cities determine which movie gets made and makes money.

  • Todd20036

    About time. A bunch of men in skintight uniforms the color of the rainbow. Nothing gay about that.
    Finally someone is out about it.

    • Mikey

      except it’s the woman who’s gay… so more of a straight guy fantasy.

      • Todd20036

        Eh. Close enough

      • Disqusdmnj

        That way Batman from “Chasing Amy” can try to make her straight again, even if just for a little while. 😜

      • Friday

        Why do you insist on treating any lesbian portrayal as though it must be for straight guys’ titillation?

        • Mordred LeFey

          Eh, I’m just kind of bitter that it’s not a guy. It’s my personal belief that lesbians are easier for the general population to swallow, thus why they’re the go-to for gay characters.

          • Friday

            I don’t think we’re actually overrun with positive lesbian characters, never mind counting any depictions that *are* for straight guy fantasies. You didn’t hear us gals complaining about the Beauty and The Beast thing not being about lesbians or something.

          • Mordred LeFey

            That’s true. We’re short on any kind of positive LGBT characters as it is.

          • greenmanTN

            I do think there is a difference in media representation. Y’all get to be practical and wise and we usually get killed in the 2nd act.

            No blaming lesbians, but in mainstream films about gay men they might as well name the character “Cannon Fodder”

          • Todd20036

            That used to be true, now not so much

          • greenmanTN

            Perhaps not, but we have seen a LOT of that, and it’s easy to fall back on that reasoning. Things are, or have been, a lot better.

            Sometimes we get to be the gay best friend of the leading lady who gets to take her shopping and give relationship advice while we have none our own. /s

            I know it has improved, but I guess I’m venting today.

          • JCF

            As I just wrote, it’s lesbian characters I’m familar w/, who could be named “Cannon Fodder”!

          • greenmanTN

            Even Brokeback Mountain, which was hailed as a barrier breaking gay male themed film, ended with one of them being beaten to death and the other living in regret.

            The other thing that happens is that until recently we were often portrayed as “queens,” silly and vapid. I don’t mind “effeminate” gay male characters so long as they are well rounded (Mark from Ugly Betty for example), but when that is the ONLY representation you see it starts to get annoying.

            I have to confess that I don’t watch TV or many movies, so I am WAY out of touch with current shows and I guess I’m coming from a historical perspective. Both gay male and lesbian characters have been portrayed as comic relief, predatory, psychotic, or doomed to die.

            Things are changing though and I’m glad to see that. One of the few shows I have watched (not even until the end of the season) was Scream Queens, and I thought this scene was very funny.


          • Mikey

            Bo from Lost Girl; Maia on The Good Fight (spin-off of The Good Wife); and The Good Wife’s Kalinda.

            Other series with prominent lesbian characters: Orphan Black, The Fosters, Pretty Little Liars, American Horror Story, Arrow, Grey’s Anatomy, How to Get Away With Murder, Orange is the New Black, Jessica Jones, Walking Dead, Dr. Who, Sense8, Gotham, Game of Thrones, Supergirl… the list actually goes on quite a bit from there.

            I think there is a good quantity of positive lesbian characters that far outweighs the number of positive gay male characters presently on TV or in movies.

          • Friday

            Well, I haven’t had TV in years so I can’t address the quality of such portrayals, but in sci-fi/fantasy/comic book genres there’s a lot more upset from the boys if someone ‘turns’ one of their role models gay in a rewrite, (Sometimes it doesn’t come off very convincing, honestly. Completely new characters can just be a harder sell, though, never mind for romantic leads.)

            Speaking of Dr. Who though, I affectionately subtitled Torchwood as ‘The Bisexuals Who Save Cardiff.’ πŸ™‚

          • JCF

            Bo & Kalinda are both bisexual (I’m not familiar enough w/ Maia to know). Re Gotham: I stopped watching when they showed that the bisexual female character was an evil psycho (that’s another part of the trope). I’m behind on “Orange is the New Black”, but I understand (damn unavoidable spoilers!) that they killed off a beloved lesbian character. Supergirl: the lesbian storyline is new this season—praying to Rao they don’t kill either of them (in the new couple) off!

          • JCF

            …and when there are lesbians, they’re ALL TOO FREQUENTLY killed off [See re “Dead Lesbian Trope”, now often referred to as “Bury Your Gays”]

          • Friday

            This seems to be common to many minorities, ,,,better I suppose than being cast as villains and psychoes and having them call that somehow ‘inclusion.’

        • Tawreos

          Given the demographics that this movie would most likely be going after it is fairly safe to say that it would be for straight guys titillation. I will say that to be certain we would need to see the scene in question.

          • Friday

            Well, it doesn’t sound like it, from what we know so far, and I never actually had the impression it was all that much about the usual boy-sci-fi-fans audience anyway. My stepdaughter liked it.

        • Mikey

          I’m sorry if that’s how my comment came across, but that wasn’t my intention at all. maybe I worded it poorly.

          As I wrote in my earlier response to this, it appears to be a far easier sell for TV/movie producers to introduce a lesbian character than it is to introduce a gay male character. one of the probable reasons for this is that for many straight men the idea of two women is a sexual turn-on.

          I don’t think that the inclusion of a lesbian character “must be” for straight men’s titillation, but that element cannot be factored out of the equation.

          • Friday

            Or there’s more of a tendency for males to feel threatened or like they can’t identify with a gay character, and it may not be seen to attract a female market segment either. It’s not doing lesbians any favors if portrayals *are* just performing to titillate men or something, though.

      • GayOldLady

        Hey……A lesbian Power Ranger is a huge fantasy of gay women, especially young gay women. I personally prefer Xena, but I’ll take one of my great grandchildren to see this movie and enjoy every minute of it. πŸ™‚

        • Friday

          I have to admit it never occurred to me to have fantasies about people running around with funny plastic weapons. πŸ™‚

          • GayOldLady

            Well, Power Rangers are way to juvenile to me, but Xena & Gabrielle. Yikes


          • JCF

            And by “Yikes”, I assume you mean delicious!

            In all honesty, XWP cost me my (het) marriage—and I’ll never regret it.

          • JCF

            Heh-heh: re that scene above. I remember going back & forth v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y w/ VCR (and later, downloaded clips). Some fans INSISTED Renee (O’Connor, “Gabrielle”) had a Nip-Slip in that scene (but personally, I could never *quite* be sure. Must.Investigate.Again! ;-D )

        • Mikey

          my comment, while mildly tongue-in-cheek, was more of a commentary on how it seems that showing lesbian characters is easier to accept for TV/film producers than showing gay male characters.

          there are so many lesbian or bisexual female characters on TV shows right now (and has been for a bit). almost every prime time show I’ve watched has some scene with woman-on-woman action. And no one complains.

          but the one show that actually has man-on-man relatively graphic scenes (How to Get Away With Murder) gets complaints about content. (and they really make gay guy seem “slutty”)

          I don’t think there’s anything wrong with a lesbian superhero.
          but I’ll be considerably more surprised when they make a gay male superhero in a movie, and don’t make him a morose, sulking, troubled, disturbed, throw-away character… or comic relief.

      • Hunter M

        Yeah, there was nothing “Gay” about that.

  • Mikey

    it doesn’t have an “LGBT character”. it has a lesbian character, or a bisexual character. But it most certainly doesn’t have a character who is lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans.

    I wish people would use the acronym LGBT in the correct context. It refers to a group of people, not to a single person.

    • Friday

      It just means a member of that broader group, is all.

    • lymis

      Yes, it applies to a group of people, of which this Power Ranger is a member.

      It would be equally valid to say she is lesbian, or bi, or apparently, questioning, but that doesn’t make using the broader label inaccurate.

  • crewman

    Time to fire up the One Million Moms copy machine and fax out some free publicity.

  • Bj Lincoln

    Cool! About time. My son was a little old for them but I would catch him watching them on Saturdays. I think it is because they are a lot like Voltron. I spent a fortune on the big Voltron that broke down to each character.

  • bambinoitaliano

    Dear Malaysia government, will you be taking AirAsia out of commission? LOL!!!

    • Todd20036

      Oh the things I’d love to do to him…

    • Strepsi

      He’s fierce and adorable, I hope he faces no repercussions. If he does, come to Air Canada — our attendants need that energy!

      • bambinoitaliano

        All at the mercy if the government decide to stick its finger to gauge how strong the publicity wind is blowing. Maybe they will hire that “gay no more” to give a proper counsel how to behave manly πŸ˜›

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    • olandp

      Oh, the song is called Toxic.

  • Raising_Rlyeh

    Kind of wish it was the blue ranger instead since the original blue ranger was portrayed by gay actor David Yost. His sexuality was the reason for leaving the show because many of the production staff, and even some of his co-stars, were assholes.

  • Rex

    She showed up driving a Subaru, that wasn’t a clue?

    • Friday

      Well, sometimes it is. If I were in the market I might check out a BRZ which isn’t exactly the stereotype. πŸ™‚ Not exactly a working vehicle, those. But people like Subies for reasons. πŸ™‚

  • Capritaur

    Visibility and representation is always good, but when will franchise movies show LGBT characters with actual, active, and meaningful sexuality that at least partially drives the narrative, instead of nonthreatening, sexless children and sidekicks with a background story? It’s not for a lack of source material (how many superheroes/villains are gay now?), and even network TV is way ahead on this. Not faulting the movie, but I feel there should be more by now.

    • Friday

      I haven’t seen the movie and don’t know the characters, but it’s basically about a superhero team, so you’re only going to see so much of any one character’s personal life. And I for one don’t mind if once in a while LGBT characters *aren’t* defined just by having sex or something. Besides, it’s a movie about *teenagers* and historically popular with even younger kids, so I’m not seeing a need for a ‘sexually-driven narrative.’

      Who knows, though, maybe her love-interest will turn out to be one of the ones in peril from whatever bad guys the movie’s about fighting.

      • Capritaur

        I understand. The quoted text says that it’s a small moment, though how “pivotal” it is remains to be seen. Sexuality-drive doesn’t have be about having sex, and I’m talking about specifically franchise movies, though, where heterosexual character’s romance and sex life are often a major part of the plot (including teenagers). Think about James Bond, Captain Kirk, Cyclops and Jean Gray, Batman, Superman, Spider-man, Kick-ass, all Disney princesses, etc, you name it, yet LGBT characters on screen so far are so muted that it’s just a line or two or a brief scene that allude to their sexuality yet adds little to the story (Mr. Sulu, LeFou, is that it?). Even the infamously pansexual Deadpool got entirely straightwashed.

        • Friday

          In some ways I’m willing to be patient about there actually being a lot of lesbian romantic leads out there: even some well-intentioned efforts to that end don’t always come off very convincing to *me.* Possibly sometimes it seems kissing a woman or something is the only way to actually write of portray a lesbian character.

          Besides which, in high school there’s only so much dating potential for gay gals. (And when I was growing up it had to be clandestine anyway, rather than part of the social dramas of straight kids dating and all that,)

          Your examples of course *are* all main characters and often the romantic leads, so comparing them to more background characters or rank and file team members only says so much.

          In that regard, well, making LGBT *lead* characters would be the real issue, and demographically we *are* a minority, where the big studios really are trying to appeal to as many moviegoers as possible.

          • Capritaur

            I’m willing to be patient about a LGBT romantic lead in a franchise movie as well, but once again, LGBT sexuality/gender identity can be important to the story without the character being the romantic lead, though in the case of Power Rangers, all rangers are main characters. I mentioned network TV before ahead on this, so let me provide an example. Not sure if you’ve watched ABC’s How to Get Away with Murder, which has an ensemble set up somewhat similar to Power Rangers: a bunch of law students (in equal standing) led by a law professor. The simple fact, established in previous seasons, that one of the students is gay and in love with another character was used to sustain the central mystery of the entire 1st half of the 3rd season (the show does a major reveal every half a season) and without the gay couple’s story line featured any more prominently than the other main characters’. When I say that LGBT characters drive the narrative, I mean that the inclusion of their sexuality contributes meaningfully to the development of the plot, but it doesn’t mean it has to overtake the plot. It doesn’t even have to happen very often. I don’t think that’s asking for too much or too soon.

          • Friday

            As far as this movie goes I’d kind of expect her love interest to be in that trope of needing-to-be-rescued-from-baddies, though. And/or the whole thing fitting into the usual sort of gaining-confidence-to-do-heroics sort of tropes. Presumably alongside the rest of the ensemble having their own personal things.

    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      Arrow, the Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl are all light years ahead of movies and many other TV shows. Their characters are fleshed out, sexually expressive and solid characters. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that producer Greg Berlanti is family and is engaged to Robbie Rogers.

  • Skeptical_Inquirer

    Does the girlfriend actually appear onscreen?

  • greenmanTN

    Cue the Six-Pack of Hysterical Harpies in 5, 4, 3…

    • bambinoitaliano

      Shiny object here! And forgotten they have to boycott πŸ˜›

  • CB

    The Power Rangers are teenagers, and this is what teenagers grapple with, especially today. Kudos to them! I know that there will be frantic reactions, but there’s also very little buzz around this movie, so…

  • kevin vincent

    Honestly I was kinda hoping BILLY would be the gay one since well… the original Billy’s actor David Yost is gay… but cool that there is a LGBT character.

  • worstcultever

    Sounds good! And that lil’ gal is purty.

    Btw, Supergirl’s sister Alex (a fairly major character/ass-kicker on the show) had a great coming out storyline a while back – dunno why it didn’t get more attention from the hate crew, but it was really well done


    • Jean-Marc in Canada

      True that and it’s dealt with fairly regularly as just another romance…as it should be. That and Wynn is knocking boots with an actual ‘alien’, talk about diversity.

  • JWC

    Hey a million Mums (ya all 17 of you) Time to rally once more What is the industry ttrying to do, throwing these faggot shows at you every second day

  • Dave B

    Maybe, they can hire OMMs to do the PR for the film, those moms are always so successful at promoting gay culture. Everything they touch turns to gold.

  • Doggidaddi

    Austin St. John, the original Red Ranger did gay porn.

  • JCF

    Bryan Cranston slumming in this thing. Funny to see him hamming it up about it on Colbert last night.

  • TheManicMechanic

    The 12 year old in my chortles when I see the word “titular.” I try to squeeze that word and other loaded words into serious writing just for fun, especially when my intended audience might tend toward uptight types and knuckle draggers.

  • bmoore4026