okay im going to attempt a rant cos im on my laptop and yeah okay cool
so. we all know why enjonine is queer erasure. and we understand why queer erasure is bad.
but i wanted to talk a bit about why enjolras being queer is important. because it is important. it’s very important.
for a very, very long time when we’ve seen the portrayal of queer characters in both literature and cinema they’ve been antagonists or they die. they don’t die in a righteous or heroic way like enjolras does. more than often these characters are antagonists AND die, because what always happens to a villain? they are killed by the magical heroic straight white male protagonist. this is prominent in film in the earlier 20th century leading up to the 70s.
and even as things changed. even as we saw gay characters that werent inherently “evil”, we see them hate themselves and hurt themselves. and the same from the people around them.
queer characters have been a stereotype. the “sissy” and the “villain”, the “weak” and the “predator”.
so why is enjolras being queer important?
he is not weak or evil, hilariously, i can’t even believe it myself, he is righteous and heroic and does not die because he likes men. he dies fighting for a cause he believes in he goes out a martyr and a hero fucking holding hands with a man who loves him.
why is enjolras being queer important? he doesn’t fit into a mainstream stereotype. you don’t see him being the “sissy” character in an old film only there to be a laughingstock. you don’t see him crying curled in a corner being beaten to death for being a fairy. you don’t see him hating himself and hurting himself for what he is.
enjolras dies with a smile on his face. he’s not just a hero for people with any passions, his passions. he’s a hero to queer people who have been longing to see a queer character whose sexuality is not the base of their sad existence.
he’s a hero to queer people who want to be strong and be a revolutionary in their own right and don’t have to worry because they’re queer.
and you know what makes that even better. les mis was published over 100 years before the stonewall riots and harvey milk’s political run, over 100 years before you could have someone say “it’s okay” and you could go somewhere where it could be.
and les mis is a classic, yes it’s huge and takes forever to read, but people know it. you can find les mis anywhere. it’s universal. and
omg. just enjolras is queer. and it’s fucking awesome. and he’s a fucking hero. and he’s got a cute butt and all the amis want to touch it.