The new homophobic law is vague enough to give a headache as to how it would be enforced but the government’s mouthpiece has already given us a hint: by attacking TV and cinema that portrays LGBT people.
I have been idly browsing through the channels when I ran into an odd title. HBO was apparently running a show called “This is sin” (“Ez bűn”). It sounded like the title of some catholic morality tale, except it wasn’t. I had a terrible suspicion and I was right. It was the hit HBO show “It’s a sin” that intentionally uses the reference to Pet Shop Boys’ 1987 hit of the same title. But the reference only works if you read the title in English – and the TV guides compulsively translate everything into Hungarian (leaving me perennially baffled as to which movie it might be in the original).
We now have a show called “This is sin” about a bunch of gay men in 1980s London having fun and dying of AIDS.
But apparently even that is too much for the government’s zombified mouthpiece that sends messages to Orbán’s enemies and sets the political agenda on political command – all in anonymous editorial hit pieces.
And yesterday’s hit piece was titled:
“Targeting Children: Netflix and HBO – Everyday homosexuality”
The hit piece complains that they found 109 contents on Netflix that portray homosexuality – even if it has nothing to do with the story. In other words, there is no need for the characters to be gay and Netflix still shows them, how dare they!
Take The Queen’s Gambit, they complain. Even though the show is about chess, the character turns out to be bisexual towards the end even if it has nothing to do with anything!
“Homosexuality is not even in the focus any more, suggesting that being different is the most natural thing in the world…”
“They write gay supporting characters into the scripts, whose homosexuality doesn’t even affect the story. … The goal is obvious. Film factories are trying to suggest that homosexuality is a common phenomenon.”
This is how you convert children, apparently. And this is what Orbán’s new homophobic law calls “the portrayal or promotion of homosexuality” to under-18s, apparently, which is now strictly forbidden.
Apart from The Queen’s Gambit, the article damns Frozen, Orange is the New Black, and the Disney Company’s LGBT contents. It analyzes in detail certain scenes from Love, Simon, Friends, Game of Thrones, RuPaul’s Drag race, Bonding, Tales of the City, Sex education, Atypical, Glee, Prom, Modern Family (and a few more shows that I could not figure out from their Hungarian titles, sorry).
The only semi-positive example of portraying the homosexual problem – according to Nemzet – is Philadelphia, where it is duly in focus, as it should be, because it is abnormal. Furthermore, it does not look normal at all, and it looks terrible from beginning to end. Philadelphia got its Oscar for the choice of topic, not the merit of the movie, the article concludes.
Menacingly, the hit piece is singling out streaming services and laments their growth – that is never a good sign in an autocracy. Both HBO and Netflix have protested against the harebrained regulation sending content that has any LGBT portrayal into the 18+zone. Now Magyar Nemzet is listing their LGBT content and calls gay sex scenes “homosexual porn” showing things that heterosexual sex scenes would never do, apparently. I would be worried about their continued license to operate here.
Next target is TikTok…