Last month, Culture Cruise host Matt Baume looked at the ’80s sitcom Cheers’ first foray into gay subject matter, and how it tackled homophobia at a time when the AIDS crisis was in its early stages. This month, Matt’s back with a fascinating look at how Harvey Fierstein broke a long dry spell of gay representation on the show and he also gives us a look at why Fierstein’s career in general was so groundbreaking..
Writes Baume: “Last month I showed you a 1983 episode of Cheers where everybody panicked because they were afraid the bar was turning gay. Well, this month, I want to show you what happened next — basically a decade of the gang more or less refusing to believe that gays exist, until a queer icon finally showed up to more or less set them straight. Well, not straight, but … you know.”