In Blades of Glory, Will Ferrell and Jon Heder are figure skaters who get in a nasty fight at the podium while receiving their medals. Because of the fight, they are banned for life and there's only one way they can go back into figure skating. They need to skate in the pairs category. Since no lady will take either of them, they end up stuck with each other. The movie is pretty funny, I bet you'll laugh. I did, a lot.
I still don't really know exactly what to think of the gay content, though. There was very little explicit gay content, but the movie can be seen as being about, I think, male intimacy and the discomfort straight guys feel with that.
The fact that men are (or pretend to be) uncomfortable touching another man is one of our biggest problems. I think that explains a lot of the homophobia in the world. Ending that unjustified disgust may very well help decrease discrimination against us queers. Because the movie displays a lot of man-on-man action, I think that the resulting light turns out to be positive. We see the two lovebirds touching each other a lot, with no problem.
Not once a homophobic slur is used, and that's great. At first, the two are really bad at the touching-each-other thing, but it all gets better as the plot moves forward. It is for that reason above all that I think the light for the gays is positive (MSNBC's review of the movie seems to agree with me).
But the picture isn't all rosy. The gay innuendos and all the male intimacy were use as the butt of the jokes, no doubt about that. But, in this case, I think the price to be paid is almost agreeable. The gays were used for a laugh, but on the way to laughter, I think that the audience is led to see that two guys can be together, touch each other, dance: be partners.
In many scenes, the writing does feel overly concerned with making sure we, the audience, know Will and Jon's character are not even remotely gay homosexuals. There are all sorts of hetero love interests for them. On one level, I guess it's good for the public to see that you can look all gay, and still be straight. As in: looking gay is fine for straight guys.
But on another level, why couldn't we have one or two gay characters in a movie dealing with a sport so famous for having gay (even if deeply closeted) athletes? I think we lost a nice chance to see some of those closet doors being opened.
The little explicit gay content comes when we first learn Will and Jon are going to compete as a pair. A random guy being interviewed for a sports show says something like this: "like figure skating isn't gay enough already." The comment came off as kinda negative. Also on the negative side, we have Nick Swardson in a role so dear to him: the gay freak. Our freak is a fan of Jon Heder's character and stalks him throughout the movie. It is pretty clear that Nick's character is gay, but no names are named. I must admit he is very funny in the part.
By the way, is Nick gay in real life?
You can see a funny video with Nick after the jump.