Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Queer Gibes for Straight Guys 

Here's a comic you can get behind.

74469.0.jpeg
David MacLean thinks those old sodomy laws were the silliest felonies ever put on the books -- especially in handcuff-happy Texas. "We can get it up the butt [there] now," cracks MacLean, a gay comedian from Toronto, who's headlining the second annual Laugh Out Proud Comedy Show, which kicks off a month-long series of Cleveland Pride events. "The laws never made sense in the first place, did they? You get caught in sodomy, you're arrested and sent to prison. What's your sentence? Sodomy."

Painful pokes aside, MacLean has yucked up his sexual orientation for more than a decade, from guest spots on Showtime's Queer as Folk and Nickelodeon's Animorphs to a bit part in the made-for-TV movie Marciano. In the early '90s, he hit the road for a 22-city tour throughout the U.S. and Canada in the one-man show Quarantine of the Mind, in which he tackled the gay community's reaction to AIDS. The tour honed his dry wit on such issues as gays in sports and growing up homo in the '70s. "So that means I lived through platform shoes, green polyester shirts, mood rings, and the Bay City Rollers," MacLean sighs. "Some traumas never heal."

What hurts more are the gibes from "narrow-minded" comedy-club owners, who hire minority comics for shows. "At some clubs, a comic who is gay, female, or ethnic will be introduced in a way that translates: Okay, I think you've had enough to drink to handle our next act," he explains. "As soon as you say, 'I'm a gay comedian,' they see their beer sales going out the window."

But he doesn't let the prejudice tick him off. MacLean has performed at gay clubs and pride festivals from Provincetown to Vancouver, joking about being single, fighting his weight, and "stuff most people relate to." And the irony? "There are many straight people in my audiences, and they enjoy the show as much as anyone else," says MacLean. "Like Neely O'Hara in Valley of the Dolls, I need mass love."

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club


Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.


Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.


Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of Highlights

More by Cris Glaser

Read the Digital Print Issue

December 1, 2021

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

© 2021 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation