In an effort to build a space for queer people like myself, every Sunday I’ll be posting interviews, opinion pieces, listicles, reviews, and more focused on the LGBT community (and occasionally about the Latinx community since I am Latinx.) Welcome to Queerly Not Straight! Enjoy and leave a comment below if you have a suggestion for what I should cover next.
HBO Max’s Father of the Bride could’ve and should’ve been gayer. And this is coming from someone who absolutely loved the movie, is queer and is also part of the Latinx community. So I saw the signs immediately when Isabela Merced‘s character Cora started hanging out with Ana Fabrega‘s Vanessa. They were both parts of the LGBTQ community and were coded as such.
With their introductions, I was excited about what was to come and the avenues explored while watching. And I’m not even asking for the old-fashioned dad to be upset that Cora was getting closer with Vanessa in a way that was not strictly platonic. That’s old and overdone. Instead, I would’ve loved for Father of the Bride to make it a little more obvious that there was something romantic there.
Sure, they get points for normalizing the LGBTQ experience. That’s fantastic. I want to see our relationships treated like everyone else’s. But even the father of the groom got two women in his life that he’s had or is in clear relationships with. But we couldn’t get any clarification that Cora was gay and in the beginning stages of a relationship? Instead, they’re shuffled about within the story or drinking and dancing together.
Personally, I think what the Father of the Bride needed was to be less ambiguous about it. Yes, I don’t want to take attention away from the actual bride. But movies are a balancing act and I feel like we were let down on an issue that really is highly frowned upon in the Latinx community and that I have personally faced judgment and hatred from my family because of it. Oh, and Cora and Vanessa dancing together closely in front of their loved ones; a declaration of intent for sure.
What Father of the Bride should’ve done is given us a line where they acknowledged that Cora was part of the alphabet mafia and that they were ok with it. Or one of the parents acknowledging that they were dancing together and going, “Cora and Vanessa really do look cute?” Or they could’ve told Cora, “We know you’ve been hanging out with Vanessa a lot and we want you to know that we like her.” That would lead to Cora blushing and walking away to prep for the wedding.
Instead, we were left with one missed opportunity after another in a movie that was truly wonderful but could’ve been magnificent. Because we’re here, we’re queer, and we should be acknowledged and normalized in equal turn; especially when it comes to the intersectional aspects of our identities. So, here’s hoping there’s a sequel to Father of the Bride where it’s Cora’s turn to walk down the aisle with the woman of her dreams and see the family work through that.
I’d watch it. And I bet plenty of us in the LGBTQ+ community would watch it too.
Father of the Bride is now available on HBO Max.
Queerly Not Straight posts every Sunday with opinion pieces, listicals, reviews, and more focused on the LGBT community (and occasionally about the Latinx community since I am Latinx.)