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Is the popularity of “Hard Gay”on tv a help or hindrance?

by Melanie Burton

Shane Rice
Marketer, 24
I think that it’s OK. I think it’s light-hearted, fun and not really too serious. People aren’t too threatened by it and don’t feel like they have to have much of an opinion on it, as opposed to having it shoved in their faces.

Nick McGlynn
ALT, 23
Gay people are often associated with cross-dressing here. Japanese often consider gay and transsexual to be interchangeable. It’s exposure, but it’s a bad stereotype. It’s not helpful for young Japanese who might think they are gay.

Eriko Yokota
Office worker, 23
Gay people on TV is OK. I don’t have any problems with it. I’m kind of interested in gay people I think that they are very fashionable and sensitive. I don’t have any gay friends right now, but I would like to.

Damian Fung
Civil servant, 25
People have the image of Hard Gay as being part of the gay community. At first I wasn’t pleased, because I would hate to have people think all gays are like that. But, it’s better to have someone in the media than no one at all.

Tomokazu Kawano
IT assistant, 26
I’m not sure of the difference between Hard Gay and gay people because I haven’t met a lot. I thought it was always quite taboo to mention someone was gay, but the gay people I do know are just normal. It’s no big deal.

Heather Wilson
ALT, 24
It’s important that they’re in the media, because that’s all Japanese see of gay people. But it’s stereotypes, so it’s not so realistic. In America, gay people are all over the media because it’s more accepted, but it Japan, it’s like a joke.