Exclusive: Warehouse 13 Goes Gay
By Phillip B. Crook
What's Steve's back story as a gay man? Is he out? Do his parents know?
Jack: We haven't explored a lot of Steve's history, other than we know he has a sister. In the back of my head, it was a difficult coming out. I don't think his parents were accepting right away. Steve's an emotionally conservative guy and I think that came from the way his parents reacted. I think he's been in a couple of relationships and he's hurt. He's hesitant about opening himself up to somebody. These are things we'll explore as we get to know the character more, but I base a lot of that on how Aaron has played the character. It's fun to watch him fill out Steve.
I'll admit, sci-fi isn't really a genre I immediately think of as being gay.
Jack: There's a surprising number of gay characters in sci-fi '- in Caprica, in Torchwood. I always wondered why there weren't more gay characters in Star Trek if it was so far into the future. It's interesting how futuristic shows still adhere to current mores. I think our fans love the show -' the tone, the way we approach story telling, the family aspect -' so the important thing Steve brings to the show is another Warehouse brother. And that's what's so great about him being gay: it doesn't matter.
Will there be ripple effects now that there's a gay character on Syfy's most-watched show?
Jack: No, I don't think there will be, thankfully. We as a minority group have achieved a lot of what we've hoped to in the entertainment industry in that a gay character just happens to be gay. I think people will respond a lot more to what Aaron brings to the screen rather than what Steve being gay brings. It's more about the individual, and Steve's an exceptionally good guy. That's a wonderfully quality for a gay character to have, because he's someone you want to get to know. Any minority group is scary until you put a face on it.
How does Syfy deal with controversy, especially in comparison to your experience with NBC [which canceled your religiously-charged show Book of Daniel]?
Jack: Syfy is totally cool. My experience with NBC was in a different political climate. In 2006, the right wing had a stranglehold on so many things. If Book of Daniel had come out two years later, I think we'd still be on the air. Everyone was so afraid of the right wing, and I was vilified in the press. How dare a gay man write about Jesus and faith? These days, that kind of response would be laughed at and ignored. It was a different world then. But because the suggestion for Steve being gay came from Syfy, I think that says it all.
Lastly, because we're talking about gay sci-fi characters, I think it's only natural that we discuss which of the Star Wars characters was most likely gay. Thoughts?
Aaron: I think it would be Luke. Definitely not Han.
Jack: We all want Han. He's my dream.
The only woman we saw Luke kiss was his sister, so maybe that's telling.
Jack: You'd have to be gay to do that, right? But, you know, Chewy would be in the bear community. And Obi-Wan certainly could be an old queen at times. C-3PO was the obvious gay. Actually, maybe they're all gay.
Aaron: So that's what a Jedi is.
Warehouse 13 airs Mondays at 9 p.m. EST on Syfy. For more info, visit the show's official website.