The quiet and fleeting depiction of lesbian mothers in an opening scene of “Toy Story 4” is being praised by homosexual advocates as a “small moment of normalization.” However, the cursory inclusion has also raised concern among some family groups who opine that it is a “subtle [way] to desensitize children” to homosexuality.
According to reports, in the beginning of the animated film, as Woody’s new owner, Bonnie, attends her first day of kindergarten, in the background — among the other children arriving for class — is a boy who is dropped off by two women. The women, who appear to be the child’s “mothers,” also embrace the boy as they return later at the end of the school day.
“[I]t’s certainly not the major representation that queer people have been waiting for, but it’s still important. This is one of the biggest movies of the year, after all, and will be seen by millions of all ages around the world,” opined the UK Gay Times.
“Here was a major family-friendly film, one of the biggest Disney Pixar releases, and they included a lesbian couple with their son. It’s a small moment of normalization, even if it’s minor,” The Mary Sue also remarked.
The lesbian site Mombian was likewise pleased, additionally noting that actress Annie Potts, who voices Bo Peep, had a role as the mother of a lesbian in the television series “The Fosters.”
But family groups said that while the depiction is fleeting, and may not even be noticed by some, it was still “unnecessary.”
“The scene is subtle in order to to desensitize children,” said One Million Moms, a part of the American Family Association (AFA), in a post about the matter. It said that the movie also contains a passing reference to not hiding in the closet.
“These ‘blink and you will miss’ moments were included strictly to push an agenda,” it opined. “Issues of this nature are being introduced too early and too soon. It is extremely common yet unnecessary.”
One Million Moms created a petition over the matter, which has received over 12,000 signatures as of press time.
Focus on the Family’s Plugged In movie review said that while the movie is “kid-friendly and tear-up-in-the-end sweet” as it tells a story about purpose, value and belonging, the “very brief inclusion of a same-sex couple in the background of one scene … is … an important issue families will want to consider with regard to this film.”
As previously reported, in 2017, “Beauty and the Beast” director Bill Condon told reporters that one of the characters — LeFou, played by Josh Gad, who is a homosexual — makes his homosexual urges in the film “really subtle and delicious.”
“And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie,” he told the outlet “Attitude.”
The moment turned out to be during a dance where LeFou briefly finds himself in the arms of Stanley, a henchman who is wearing a dress, although other scenes suggested that LeFou was struggling with feelings toward Gaston.
Condon also told the outlet that homosexuals have had a history with “The Beauty and the Beast” as the man who wrote the lyrics for the animated version of the film, released in 1991, had been fighting AIDS while working on the project. Howard Ashman died before the movie was released in theaters.
“Specifically for him, [the Beast] was a metaphor for AIDS,” he said. “He was cursed, and this curse had brought sorrow on all those people who loved him, and maybe there was a chance for a miracle — and a way for the curse to be lifted. It was a very concrete thing that he was doing.”
Psalm 15:1-2 states, “Lord, who shall abide in Thy tabernacle? Who shall dwell in Thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and speaketh the truth in his heart.”