Russell T Davies has come out swinging against Disney’s “pathetic” attempts to include LGBT+ stories, calling Loki‘s bisexual coming out scene a “feeble gesture”.
The It’s a Sin writer joined a virtual Pride month panel for Swansea University. Davies spoke at large about his career in screenwriting, telling queer stories and how the TV industry has changed over the years to include more LGBT+ characters.
The multi-BAFTA award-winning writer was asked about how he believed media had changed between his esteemed series Queer As Folk and It’s a Sin. Davies spoke about how, in his experience, TV drama commissioners “want gay stories” before he spoke out against the rise of streaming services – like Disney Plus and Netflix.
“Nonetheless, I think huge, cleaning warning bells are ringing as the giants rise up with Netflix and Disney Plus especially,” Davies told the online panel.
He continued: “I think that’s a very great worry. Loki makes one reference to being bisexual once, and everyone’s like, ‘Oh my god, it’s like a pansexual show.’
“It’s like one word. He said the word ‘prince’, and we’re meant to go, ‘Thank you, Disney! Aren’t you marvellous?’
“It’s a ridiculous, craven, feeble gesture towards the vital politics and the stories that should be told.”
Davies added that his “worry” about the future of LGBT+ stories on TV is that streaming services will “damn us” with “their condescension in the end”.
Loki has been widely praised as the first canonically bisexual Marvel character on screen
The revelation came during episode three of the Disney Plus series when Loki and Sylvie have a heart-to-heart chat. During their chat, the trickster god shared that he likes “a bit of both” when asked if he had a “princess” or “prince” waiting for him at the end of their crusade.
However, after that scene, Loki’s bisexuality is largely ignored throughout the rest of the series.
Showrunner Kate Herron, who herself is bi, said in an interview with Entertainment Tonight that the scene is “how we acknowledge” the character’s sexuality, but she didn’t think there would be more scenes included in the first season. Instead, she said she hoped the scene “paves the way for deeper exploration”.
Loki gets real with Sylvie in episode three, Lamentis (YouTube/New Rockstars)
Earlier this year, a trailer for Loki revealed a document from the Time Variance Authority that listed Loki’s sex as “fluid”. LGBT+ Marvel fans revelled in the news that not only would the trickster be bisexual but also “officially gender-fluid”.
In the Marvel universe, Loki is canonically pansexual and gender-fluid.
The god has a highly developed talent for shape-shifting and can present himself in many forms. He has expressed himself in different genders, taken on animal forms and even disguised himself as his adopted father, Odin.
He has also been described by Odin as his child “who is both” his daughter and son in one comic book.