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BBC Claps Back at Complaints of Same-Sex Kiss in The Next Step

BBC Claps Back at Complaints of Same-Sex Kiss in 'The Next Step'

BBC Claps Back at Complaints of Same-Sex Kiss in 'The Next Step'

The broadcaster is standing firmly in support of the cute queer storyline in its longrunning teen drama series.

byraffy

Though we have a lot more queer representation in mainstream media now than we have ever had in the past few decades, there's still a long way to go when it comes to the way society sees and values LGBTQ+ people. In the year of our lord 2020, there are still people out there who complain at the mere suggestion that queer people should see themselves existing in their fave films and television shows, and what happened recently with Candian teen drama series The Next Step is proof of that. 

According to a report from The Metro, when the CBBC (the BBC's children's brand) mockumentary series aired a same-sex kiss between characters Cleo (Dani Verayo) and Jude (Molly Saunders) late last month, they were inundated with complaints from homophobes who hated seeing two girls sharing a living moment together and kissing each other. Because apparently we can't have nice things, a petition (which PRIDE will not be linking to) was even started to "remove sexual content from CBBC and all kid’s programs" even though, you know, it was literally just a kiss and there are plenty of examples of straight characters getting their own kisses and romantic storylines. (Though no one is throwing complaints or starting petitions against those, now are they???)

Luckily for us, the BBC, CBBC's parent company, didn't take any of the double standards and homophobia to heart and stood firmly with the production of The Next Step in affirming the lives and relationships of queer youth.

"The decision to include this moment, as part of a longer storyline throughout series 7 which has been tracking the development of a romantic relationship between two of the characters, Jude and Cleo, was taken very carefully and with much consideration, and came about after CBBC and Boatrocker (the production company who make the show) acknowledged that the series could and should do more to reflect the lives of LGBTQ+ young people," the BBC said in an official statement on their website. "This is an important part of our mission to make sure that every child feels like they belong, that they are safe, and that they can be who they want to be."

They continued: 

"We believe that the storyline, and the kiss, was handled with sensitivity and without sensationalism, following as it did the portrayal of Jude & Cleo’s developing relationship and I’m afraid we do not agree that it was inappropriate for the audience age—CBBC regularly portrays heterosexual young people dating, falling in love, and kissing, and it is an important way of showing children what respectful, kind and loving relationships look like."

Read the BBC's full statement here. And watch Cleo and Jude's touching kiss from The Next Step in the video below!

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Raffy Ermac

Digital Director, Out.com

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel