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Masters of Sex Crushes Us with A Lesbian Character Death

Masters of Sex Crushes Us with A Lesbian Character Death

Masters of Sex Crushes Us with A Lesbian Character Death

Masters of Sex is yet another show to, disappointingly, fall into the "Bury Your Gays" trope. 


[This article contains spoilers for the 10/16 episode of Masters of Sex]

2016 is apparently going for a "Bury Your Gays" all-time record. On Masters of Sex's most recent episode, resident lesbian couple Betty Moretti  (Annaleigh Ashford) and Helen (Sarah Silverman) were about to become happier than ever - a rarity for TV lesbians, as we know well. That should have been our first red flag that everything was about to go south, since we've learned the hard way over the last several years that happiness in a queer female couple often means impending doom.

As a lesbian couple in the 1960s, these two were always climbing uphill. However, over recent episodes they had forged a comfortable - if private - life together, and they were even expecting a child that Helen was carrying.  Helen's parents didn't quite take the news of her and Betty's relationship well when they found out, but at least the couple had their love to get them through. Taking a note from that infamous The 100 episode, in the latest episode Helen and Betty are found cuddling and discussing the possibility of an optimistic future. Cue sadness.

As Helen goes into labor, the first blow we experience is Betty's exclusion from the delivery room. The second comes when there are complications with the birth, and Dr. Scully, another gay character on the show, is forced to perform a C-section. This doesn't go well for Helen, and while Dr. Scully is able to deliver the baby, neither he nor Dr. Masters are able to save Helen as she bleeds out on the operating table - all while Betty is unable to see her.

But wait - it somehow gets worse. Helen's parents now have custody of the child, and they've barred Betty from being a part of her daughter's life. According to Autostraddle, Betty "will have a much more involved story going forwards in Season 4," and we certainly hope that includes a triumphant reunion with her and Helen's child. Even if that is the outcome, we're still disappointed that this is the route they had to take to get there. Way to go, Masters of Sex, you've fallen into TV's trap of truly letting LGBT viewers down.

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Preston Max Allen