Agents of SHADE: Say Bi

Friends, I want to believe that Fitz and Simmons are bisexual.  That is how I am opening this, and that is where we’re going to be this week.  I want to believe it because I, like all of you, thirst for representation.  I want to believe it because it’s been my personal headcanon that they’re both genderqueer pansexuals since episode 1.  I want to believe because as an audience, don’t we deserve this?

 

We do.  But the issue seems to be, as it is with Teen Wolf, as it is with How to Get Away with Murder, bisexuality is some kind of fleeting, beautiful butterfly.  Now, we have to keep in mind that these are two other shows that have openly gay characters, and Teen Wolf did include a bi female character.  In passing.  Of course.  Agents of SHIELD had two canonically queer characters, and never confirmed their queerness.  I vented my frustrations about that in the very first Agents of SHADE, and I think it bears repeating.  This is a show that I really do love, but it’s LGBT track record is not a good one.

 

That’s why I want to believe that Fitz and Simmons are bi, I think.  I really, really want to believe that the show writers have heard the criticisms surrounding Victoria Hand and Isabelle Hartley, and are at least, in some way, trying to amend that.  But until I hear verbal confirmation of it, I can’t actually confirm anything.  I can’t do anything but speculate.

 

Yes, we get scene where subconscious Simmons says to Fitz (about Mack,) “He’s quite a lot of man, isn’t he?”  To which Fitz replies, “Well I obviously agree with you since you’re my subconscious.”  And yeah, that’s pretty exciting.  But until Fitz actually says “I have a crush on Mack,” we’re still pretty stuck in the queer-baiting dark, here.

 

The same goes for Simmons and Bobbi Morse, or Simmons and Skye.  While Simmons seems to bask in the beauty, grace, and badassery that is Bobbi Morse, exclaiming “she’s amazing!” to Coulson and May, that’s still not a technical confirmation of queerness.  And as much as Elizabeth Henstridge and Chloe Bennet say “We ship Skimmons,” in interviews, it doesn’t actually do anything unless either character talks about her romantic feelings for the other in-show.

 

And while there are those of us out there that will read it as queer, there’s still a lot of backlash we have to deal with.  How many of you have heard “stop trying to make everything gay?” before?  I’ve seen it quite a few times in fandom.  It’s shitty.  It’s really shitty, and guess what?  It will happen even if we get queer confirmation, but it will happen one hell of a lot less.

 

Quick note: a great way to confirm it would be to have a scene where Fitz and Simmons are sitting together and they want to catch up and it’s kind of awkward.  So Simmons says “let’s just say what’s on our mind at the same time, okay?” And then in union, they both say “I’m super into Mack/Bobbi,” and then there’s a short pause and then they both burst into giggles and start talking about their crushes.  See? I just solved the whole issue.  You’re welcome.

I can only recall two times I’ve ever seen bisexuality confirmed on screen.  First, on Arrow, when Sara Lance kisses Nyssa al Ghul and changed my life.  Second, in the movie Dodgeball.  Yes.  That movie.  At the end, when Christine Taylor’s character kisses her girlfriend in front of Vince Vaughn, and then goes “I’m not a lesbian, I’m bisexual.”  This was in 2004.  And how is it that a Vince Vaughn movie was more progressive about bisexuality than freaking Buffy the Vampire Slayer?  What is going on here, friends?

 

I will continue, as always, to say that FitzSimmons are bisexual.  But I’ve been doing that since day 1.  And I’m a queer viewer.  We always look for representation, even when there is none.  But don’t let this be one of those circumstances.  There is a really good opportunity here for the show, and I hope it’s not wasted.