‘Will & Grace’ take on the ex-gay movement

The latest episode of the revived TV series ‘Will & Grace’ has something to say about the ex-gay movement with Jane Lynch and Andrew Rannells appearing as a ‘now straight’ married couple trying to convince queer youth to shun their natural feelings.

The popular TV show has returned to our screens after more then a decade off the air with a new series that sees the central characters of Will and Grace, and Jack and Karen, dealing with the realities of 2017 and the challenges of being a decade older.

The fifth episode of the new series just went to air, in Australia you can watch it on streaming service Stan, and the show took aim at the ex-gay movement.

This week Jack’s son Elliot returned to the show. In the original series Jack was shocked to discover that he had a son via sperm donation, with Rosie O’Donnell playing Jack’s mother. It turns out Elliot grew up and moved to Texas where he married into a conservative family, and he and Jack have drifted apart.

In this week’s episode ‘Grandpa Jack’, Jack is shocked to discover that Elliot and his wife Emma, have a son named Skip. When Skip unexpectedly drops by Will’s apartment looking for Jack it becomes pretty obvious pretty quickly that the teenager is all kinds of fabulous.

Sadly, Eliot and Emma are shipping the teen of to a camp called ‘Straighten Arrow’ to “fix him”. Jack and Will head to upstate New York to find Skip and investigate the camp he’s been sent away to.

Here we find the camp run by recently married, and no longer gay couple Roberta and Reggie, played by well known queer actors Jane Lynch and Andrew Rannells.

Hanging on the wall of the camp is a portrait of US Vice President Mike Pence, who has been outspoken about his opposition to LGBTI rights. Roberta and Reggie sing songs about how its better for boys to like girls, and girls to like boys.

While Will distracts the camp counselors, Skip sneaks out and has a heart to heart with his newly discovered grandpa.

The most touching part of the episode is when Jack tell his Skip, that while his parents might not understand him, his grandfather will always be there for him.

“This place can’t fix you, because you’re not broken.” Jack tells Skip.

OIP Staff, Images: Jane Lynch as Roberta, Andrew Rannells as Reggie, Sean Hayes as Jack McFarland, Jet Jurgensmeyer as Skip, photos by Chris Haston/NBC

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