This season on Glee, a number of fans have been vocal about what is has been called as a “gay bias” that has started to develop on the show. Glee has always paid special attention to its LGBT characters — but that doesn’t necessarily mean that these couples get an equal amount of time to display affection on screen.
Notably, there is the fan complaint that straight couple Finn (Cory Monteith) and Rachel (Lea Michele) have kissed more times in one episode than Kurt (Chris Colfer) and Blaine (Darren Criss) have in the course of their entire relationship.
In a recent podcast interview with Gold Derby, creator Ryan Murphy took time to address those concerns. While Ryan says he sympathizes with fans on this issue, he also feels like it’s a situation where he and the Glee writers “really can’t win.”
“I think there are a group of fans that are very interested in the Brittany/Santana romance and the Kurt/Blaine romance. I guess you would call them our gay fans,” Ryan tells Gold Derby during the podcast. “They have become among the most passionate commenters and shippers and the thing I have to say about that is I really do understand it.”
As someone who himself grew up with so few TV characters he could actually relate to, Ryan says he gets why fans are so involved in the Klaine and Brittana romantic storylines. “I really do understand the passion for it. I really understand how important it is for so many young people to turn on a show and say, Oh, I’m like that character. I am like that. I wish I had the freedom to have that bravery. I mean, when I was growing up, I didn’t have that,” he says.
So why don’t these characters get to kiss more on the show? Basically, Ryan says, there is only so much you can show on a network TV program with Glee’s timeslot.
“I feel like this is a network show that is on at 8 o’clock, which is a family hour, and I feel like there is no other show on television that has done more for gay characters and more for gay storylines than Glee. I really believe that, and I’ve really fought hard for it. I have a network and a studio that doesn’t bat an eye and says great.”
Still, Ryan realizes that fans aren’t always happy with the way Glee’s storylines have worked out. “I think that they also feel sometimes that we have not handled those characters exactly like they want. To that I say, You know what? They’re probably right. I think there are some things in the last two seasons maybe we could have done a little more artfully and a little bit more carefully.”
Bottom line, they may not get it right all the time, but Ryan says he and the writers are trying. “I do get the criticisms. Look, you’re doing a show, a lot of things happen. You try and do your best."