The Disney Channel will soon achieve a historic first by presenting its first-ever coming-out story in the history of its broadcast. The coming out will occur in the series Andi Mack and involve a younger male character, 13-year-old Cyrus Goodman, who begins to realize his feelings for his friend, Jonah, and will subsequently come out as gay to his friends. The storyline will begin when the show airs its Season 2 premiere this Friday.
Andi Mack is comedy-drama series that follows a 13-year-old girl who discovers that her older “sister” is actually her mother. Cyrus will confide his same-sex attraction to his supportive friend Buffy. He will navigate his feelings, possibly throughout the rest of the season and beyond.
In a statement, the Disney Channel said, “Andi Mack is a story about ‘tweens’ figuring out who they are. (Creator) Terri Minsky, the cast and everyone involved in the show takes great care in ensuring that it’s appropriate for all audiences and sends a powerful message about inclusion and respect for humanity.”
Here is a Season 2 teaser trailer for Andi Mack:
Deadline.com reports that the show’s creator and network executives consulted with child development experts and screened the episode to organizations such as Gays and Lesbians Allied Against Defamation (GLAAD), Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) as well as The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy and Common Sense Media, an organization that specializes in helping develop and rate age-appropriate content for younger viewers.
Andi Mack is Disney’s fourth step towards same-sex content
The Disney Channel has taken several steps over the recent past to present gay content to its young viewers.
In August 2017, the channel aired a groundbreaking episode of the Irish animated children’s TV series Doc McStuffins which featured a same-sex female couple voiced by lesbian actresses Portia de Rossi and Wanda Sykes.
The episode marks the second time that Disney’s broadcast cable channel presented a same-sex couple in its animated programming.
The first occurred in a February 2017 episode of their animated adventure series Star vs. The Forces of Evil in which a non-recurring, male same-sex couple kissed at a boyband concert. Disney also featured a same-sex female couple in a 2014 finale episode of their live-action sitcom Good Luck Charlie.