#GeekGirlTalk: Queer Representation in Roswell, New Mexico
Welcome to Geek Girl Talk, a (biased, subjective, opinionated) conversation about the pop culture we’re currently loving, hating, and obsessing over. For our first installment, we’re unpacking queer representation in Roswell, New Mexico.
Who We Are Vaguely and in Terms Only of the Media We Seek Out Most Often:
Teal (roman type!)
Literally any teen TV show, YA, women’s and feminist media, everything Star Trek
Hanna (italics, baby!)
Reality TV, memoirs, romance novels, anything British, any podcast ever
[Spoiler disclaimer: If you’re not caught up, this post won’t be too spoiler-y, as we just talk about general interpersonal stuff between the characters. We might recommend watching the first episode, though!]
While I’m not (yet) familiar with its source material, I do consider the original Roswell TV series to be an important piece of teen media—not to mention one that I specifically harbor a lot of fondness for. And so, the new CW adaptation, Roswell, New Mexico, is a series I’m both excited about and slightly skeptical of. That being said, I’ve found that this version does have a lot of things going for it. The characters are older by about a decade, the show addresses current social issues directly instead of relying solely on the ambiguous implications of the alien-human metaphor, and the blatant whitewashing of the original cast is being backtracked. In other words, there’s a lot to be hopeful about. If I’m being honest, though, what’s struck me the most about this retelling is what it’s doing in terms of queer representation, and with one of the alien protagonists, Michael, in specific. I won’t argue that it’s the most radical or robust depiction one could imagine, but something about the way they’re writing his bisexuality is affecting me personally and, by extension, shedding light on the way this particular facet of queer representation has been failing us even as popular media is beginning to do a better job of normalizing non-hetero characters and relationships overall.