Disclaimer: Please do not try to contact and harass the author. This topic is about a story from them and its problematic content. At best, I want to inform others here, possibly including the author themselves, about the depictions of marginalised groups and already-underrepresented stuff in Episode stories; at worst I may going to pop a blood vessel ranting
Recently, I was scrolling through the trending page in the app, where I found this completed story moderately trending.
It is called Finding Luca Hoxley, a romcom about a 20-something-year-old girl getting together with a bar owner via the help of her Gay BFF. Yes, the gay BFF is so important he is the subject in the description. Starting from the cover, the story has some red flags IMO:
This character so far is the worst element in this story, and this is just from the first chapter. Mikie is a flamboyant gay man, who is a sexually aggressive cheater, invades other people’s personal spaces and privacy - and even says not once but twice he could make the LI ‘turn gay’.
Content Warning: Nudity, Sexual Harassment and a Homophobic depiction of an LGBTQ+ character.
This is when we first get introduced to the character: buck naked in MC’s house after his boyfriend kicked him out, who apparently spent the whole night and day in her house without ever informing her beforehand.
Even while he is in an open relationship, it is implied that he often cheats on his SO. This is just shitty behaviour regardless of how open the relationship is supposed to be: communication is always key. But hey it doesn’t matter since LGBTQ+ people love sex, right?
Yes, Mikie literally shoved MC in order to make her go out with him to scope out for a guy (who is the LI of MC’s btw)
This is just plain disgusting. Isn’t the gay man seducing and converting other men to be also gay, this predatory behaviour, one of the worst stereotypes in the LGBTQ+ community?
This is a waitress and the LI. This scene implies that what happened earlier in the screenshots above is supposed to be played for laughs.
Also, this guy wanted to sneak into the LI’s office, just because … IDK, because he doesn’t know what privacy and personal space are.
The last screenshot is so yuck. Earlier, when the LI confronts MC and her friends about sneaking into his office, he and MC were having an intimate stare-off, and MC only ran away is because Mikie suggested she could work for LI being a server. Despite fully knowing the attraction between them and the other times people said to him that LI isn’t gay, Mikie mentions this.
Again, these screens are from the first chapter of the story. Among a couple of other issues with the story, this character is a walking disrespectful homophobic anti-gay stereotype (and by extension putting GNC and polyamorous people in a negative light) and I am very shocked how this story became so popular so quickly.
Here I am thinking of linking some resources about the subject matters in question so people have a better idea on how they should be portrayed properly.
For instance, this Episode Axiom post about representing polyamory. It is talking about the relationship dynamics itself, but could be applied to specific people in a poly relationship too.
Seems a bit fitting that I linked this, since later on in the story it is revealed that one of MC’s friends often has threesomes with her now-husband. The way it got introduced is so abrasive.