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The Grey Area

Originally published on Sayoni Speak.

So we all had high hopes. We all stayed glued to our screens, crying with joy about the best thing that ever happened to network television lesbian representation: Callie and Erica on Grey’s Anatomy.

But it was not to be. Season 5 started airing in September, and though yes, I have been too busy to give updates on the sexciting happenings on Grey’s [let’s just drop the pretense we care about Meredith or Cristina or Bailey], I have been following the series along with that other show, Heroes [until the plotline started completely irritating me and I decided to give up].

Callie and Erica did eventually get it on after their hot kiss at the end of Season 4 – for detailed recaps on what happened, check AfterEllen. After the traditional gay panic, the even more traditional lets-take-it-slow dating which ended up in a fast beeline to the bed, Erica figuring out she is soooo gay, Callie figuring out she is bisexual, not lesbian by testing theories with Sloane… it all ended in a big what in the name of Sappho when Erica simply walked away from Callie over a silly argument over who got Denny’s heart and Grey Areas.

Devoted fans knew a week before the episode was released, that Brooke Smiths, who plays Erica was fired by ABC for some reason. No one knows why in the name of Sappho’s U-haul this happened, and why Brooke Smiths had to be fired, instead of them just breaking up and keeping the character of Erica on the show. Even GLAAD is taking Shonda’s side on this, and they are blaming it all on bad chemistry.

Pfft. It would be a little more believable had we not been hearing rumours that Melissa George was coming to the show as a bisexual intern, but that was quickly thrown in the can about the same time as Brooke Smiths was fired.

And here I was, so happy, so proud, that network television was going where no man (or woman) had gone before, in rather bravely portraying queer characters [remember last season? Remember the hot gay soldier kiss? Remember Joe the bartender? What happened to him anyway, after becoming a twin daddy?]. And here it is, all broken. *sobs*

Many queer folks who were already long-time fans of Grey’s, or those who jumped on the wagon after Callica [ie, the shipper term for Callie and Erica] have taken to boycotting the show. Jump off the wagon all you want, I’m riding this to the end to see what happens to Callie, at least. And not just because Sara Ramirez is hot [that gigawatt smile and the curves and the boobs… need I say more?]. And ABC, I love you, I love most of your other productions, but since you decided to stop giving us airtime, I will have to do the same for you on this space which was generously given to you, on the dime of the people who pay for the hosting of Sayoni.

Goodbye, Callica… we’ll miss you!


November 11, 2008 - Posted by | LGBTQ, TV Shows | , , , , , , ,


  1. I’m still not entirely sold on the idea that the network is having issues with portraying the complexities of gay relationships over the long term. I mean, ABC still has Matthew Rhys and Luke MacFarlane on Brothers and Sisters.

    If I had to guess, the fact that they were bringing Melissa George on as a bisexual love interest and the fact that they’re using the excuse of “chemistry” says to me that Brooke Smith wasn’t testing well with straight audiences. They only want to see a lesbian relationship if both parties are hot and while Brooke Smith is beautiful in her own right and a phenomenal actress, she is not a conventional beauty. It’s screwed up, but a sad reality, nonetheless.

    Comment by Clint | November 11, 2008 | Reply

  2. That’s a fair reading, Clint. Well, we will see how the Melissa George storyline goes, shall we?

    I am skeptical. Evidence increasingly points to homophobia on someone’s end but we don’t know how far the net falls. So far I’m buying the relatively recent Nikki Weiss’s story, as the writing and the heart behind the development just seemed too genuine to be a ratings stunt or whimsical tokenism. It’s a great pity they had to go back on their promise.

    Wonder what’s in the next aired episode. Can’t stand the fact that ABC took down all their pictures of Hahn immediately after it happened!

    Comment by nei | November 11, 2008 | Reply

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