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Love, Sidney

By Wikipedia

Love, Sidney was a 1981-1983 comedy television series which starred Tony Randall. The show is remembered best as a milestone in the progress toward public acceptance of homosexual characters on television, but often regarded as a seriously flawed one.

The premise of the show was established in a TV movie aired earlier the same year, entitled Sidney Shorr: A Girl's Best Friend. Randall played the title character, a well-to-do gay New Yorker in his 50s, who befriends an unwed mother and the daughter she gives birth to, and then becomes the daughter's guardian when the mother leaves for California. The movie was fairly well-received, enough so that a series followed.

The series premise did not actively retcon that of the movie; the girl's mother (now played by a different actress, Swoosie Kurtz) was part of the regular cast, but it was explained that she had returned to New York when her marriage in California didn't work out. However, NBC had received a few complaints from wacko special-interest groups upset about a positive portrayal of homosexuality, and so nothing in the series referred to its lead character's sexuality except oblique, coded hints.

Thus, even though Love, Sidney was the first prime-time television series to have a gay character as its central lead (as opposed to one lead in an ensemble cast, like the character of Jody on Soap, or Vincent Schiavelli's character on the much earlier The Corner Bar) the character's orientation was hidden in "the closet"for all forty episodes of the show's run. Thus, while the show is still remembered as a significant point in popular culture's portrayal of homosexuality, it is also remembered for the risks it did not take.We've not had time to write about this TV show yet. If you were a fan, we'd love to have you help us out by writing a synopsis or review!

 

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TV TIDBITS

Aired: 1981-1983

Cast: Tony Randall, Swoosie Kurtz

Network: NBC

Genre: Sitcom

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from this Wikipedia article, which is probably more up to date than ours (retrieved August 12, 2005).

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