In an effort to build a space for queer people like myself, every Sunday (or when I’m feeling spicy) I’ll be posting interviews, opinion pieces, listicles, reviews, and more focused on the LGBT community from a Latina perspective. Welcome to Queerly Not Straight! Enjoy and leave a comment below if you have a suggestion for what I should cover next.
P.S. I, Lyra Hale, do not give any site permission to copy or repost my work in any form. If you are reading this on any site besides Fangirlish, it has been stolen.
As a bisexual woman, I have complicated feelings about the sapphic representation happening on Apple TV+’s Ted Lasso. Now I’m not talking about Keeley Jones (Juno Temple) and Jack Danvers (Jodi Balfour) kissing, holding hands, having lunch together, or just being a couple in general. That I like and welcome sapphic & bisexual moments because this show has desperately needed them for a long long time. What’s been hard to watch has been Jack becoming a walking red flag comparable to Rupert, the amount of LGBTQ+ biases and homophobia from many Ted Lasso fans, and then the sheer hypocrisy of some shippers.
This has made watching season 3 of Ted Lasso difficult instead of the transformative ride it was in seasons 1 and 2. And while I did do a small thread on my concerns when it comes to this current season here I wanted to take my time with this and break it down a little more. Because it hasn’t been talked about enough and whatever comes next for Ted Lasso, they have to do better. And doing posts like this, where we shed light on the problematic ways that LGBTQ+ relationships are written and examined, is the way to do it. So, let’s dive in.
1. The writer’s room really didn’t see what they were doing?
Firstly, LGBTQ+ characters can be the bad guy. There’s no denying that. We’re as multi-faceted as anyone else. It does say something about how unaware Ted Lasso writers are about the general landscape on TV when it comes to LGBTQ+ representation. Because from where I’m standing, stories about us and our experiences are being canceled left and right or are treated as a side story for the episode of the week. And when you don’t see a lot of our stories on screen, it becomes problematic AF when the first sapphic story on a show like Ted Lasso is a cautionary tale about love bombing and a comparison to the turd that is Rupert. I just wanted to see our stories in a positive light with one of the show’s most beloved characters. And now here we are.
2. The dismissal of Keeley/Jack by some shippers.
I will admit that it has been quite frustrating the way that some shippers have immediately dismissed Keeley/Jack. Even I know they’re not endgame. That doesn’t mean I’m not going to give them a chance or see where this journey will take Keeley and Roy, who are most likely endgame. Some have even gone as far as to talk about “When is the real ship coming back?” or “Why are they wasting time on Keeley and Jack?” Or my personal favorite, “I’m ok with LGBTQ+ relationships, but…” STOP. RIGHT. THERE. As soon as you throw a “but” in there it negates what you just said. You don’t care for LGBTQ+ relationships and it really shows.
3. The uproar over the lack of Keeley Jones’s backstory.
Over three seasons we have learned plenty about Keeley and watched her grow from someone who made due to someone who wanted to chart her own course. There’s no denying though that Keeley hasn’t had the backstory that other characters on this show have had. I’m talking about her childhood, family, and what set her on her initial career. And it’s quite suspicious that there has been a significant uptick of people complaining about Keeley’s backstory now that she’s with Jack. Where was this energy when Keeley was with Jamie or Roy? Some fans have been asking from the start. Those fans are aces. Those “suddenly” up in arms about the lack of Keeley backstory now that she’s with Jack…check your LGBTQ+ biases at the door.
4. The fact that it took this long to do LGBTQ+ stories.
Ted Lasso took way too long to introduce LGBTQ+ characters and to bring queer representation to the foreground. It’s important to note that Colin’s journey is his own and no one can or should be forced to come out until they’re comfortable. Keeping that in mind, I still believe that this show took way too long to get into Colin’s story, to introduce Jack, and for LGBTQ+ relationships to actually happen. And for a show that is ingrained in the concept of love and its various forms, I have felt left out for seasons. So much so that while I love watching Colin’s story develop and Keeley/Jack explore their sapphic relationship, at this point I feel like an afterthought. This doesn’t mean I’m going to stop watching this show. It’s just a note to writers’ rooms about how much their viewers notice their choices.
5. Those who suddenly have a problem with boss/employee relationships.
Now this doesn’t go to all Tedbecca shippers. This goes out to a select group of Tedbecca shippers who I have seen on Twitter who are up in arms that Keeley and Jack are in a relationship and how that’s wrong because Jack is Keeley’s boss. In any context, a boss/employee relationship is wrong because of the power imbalance. This includes Keeley and Jack. It also includes Ted and Rebecca, the very ship that these specific shippers want to see set sail. And it’s quite suspicious that Tedbecca is “ok” and Keeley/Jack isn’t. Because Ted Lasso has made it very clear that they don’t care about the issues with boss/employee relationships. So the only logical conclusion is that there are LGBTQ+ biases at play disguised as suddenly being the morality police.
Ted Lasso premieres new episodes every Wednesday on Apple TV+.
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.)