Tags: stephanie mcmahon | gay | wwe | character | wrestling

Stephanie McMahon, WWE Brand Chief, Says Gay Character Is a Possibility

Image: Stephanie McMahon, WWE Brand Chief, Says Gay Character Is a Possibility
Stephanie McMahon attends the WrestleMania 30 press conference at the Hard Rock Cafe New York on April 1, 2014 in New York City. (Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 22 Jul 2015 02:10 PM

Stephanie McMahon, chief brand officer of WWE, said that it's possible the organization could introduce a gay character.

The revelation came when a reporter for The Daily Beast encountered McMahon at the ESPY Awards in Los Angeles last week, and inquired about WWE superstar Darren Young, who came out as gay two years ago.

"Darren Young was the first WWE superstar to really come out as being homosexual, but his character in the show is not," McMahon responded. "At least, we haven’t done anything with it either way — just yet."

As The Daily Beast notes, many wrestling fans would be quick to point out that "thinly veiled homoerotic ring theatrics" have long characterized professional wrestling, however no truly positive portrayals of LGBT persons have ever been scripted into any of the entertainment WWE provides. On the contrary, WWE has at times featured homophobic language and unflattering portrayals of persons perceived to be gay.

Somewhere in the middle, however, was a storyline from the early 2000s, when the tag team Billy and Chuck became ambiguously gay, and staged a scripted in-ring commitment ceremony. During the ceremony, the two characters balked, however, revealing it was all a publicity stunt.

Fast forward more than a decade, and McMahon, daughter of WWE founders Vince and Linda McMahon, was seen happily clapping and cheering for Caitlyn Jenner — formerly Bruce — when she received an ESPY award.

WWE personality and writer Paul Heyman, who helped conceive the Billy-Chuck storyline, isn't 100 percent sure that a gay character could be pulled off at present time.

"If you ask me if the WWE has the storytelling nuance and the audience has the ability to accept a character who is gay, and the fact that he is homosexual doesn’t define him or his character . . . I don’t think the WWE has the nuance, and I don’t think the audience is at that point — yet," he said.

McMahon herself seems to have a bit more optimism, however, and thinks a gay character could be good for business.

"It could very well pop up in WWE because we are all about what’s relevant, and what’s pop culture, and what people want to see. So if there is an opportunity, we might just take it," she said.

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Stephanie McMahon, chief brand officer of WWE, said that it's possible the organization could introduce a gay character.
stephanie mcmahon, gay, wwe, character, wrestling
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2015-10-22
Wednesday, 22 Jul 2015 02:10 PM
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