Nowadays men can hold hands, share apartments, and maybe even sometimes beds *gasp*, so in 2017, you don't expect the issue of sexuality to be much of a problem in cinema. Shows like Game of Thrones thrive on their sexual promiscuity, while Westworld not only gave us a toothy man on man BJ, but a three-minute orgy. Hollywood is packed with gay stars, while Brokeback Mountain is not just remembered for two men getting it on in a tent, but as a damn good film!
Most of us are lucky to live in a society that is accepting of whomever we love, but sadly, some regions of the world have been a little slower to adapt. Now we head to China and the bizarre story of #RidleyScott's #AlienCovenant being strongly censored for its smattering of blood and the sharing of saliva with a same sex kiss.
It Started With A Kiss
While Scott's foray into the depths of space has been muddling along in the UK and US for quite some time, it has only just made its way into Chinese cinemas — albeit under some heavy censorship.
Several scenes of the various Xenomorph hybrids were removed for excessive gore, which will arguably make it even less of an Alien film than it already was, however censors also pulled the gay kiss amidst fears it could warp the minds of the nation. For those struggling to remember at which point we saw any of the cast try and reenact Brokeback, it is actually the scene involving Michael Fassbender's Walter and David inside David's little man cave that got the censors hot and bothered.
After some saucy chat about "fingering" David's flute hole, the doppelgänger androids share a tender peck on the lips after David says no one will ever love Walter like he does. Wait, so that's it? The film already came under fire for the lackluster development of the franchise's first openly gay characters and the pairing of Hallet and Lope. With China removing the whole Walter and David kiss, you can only imagine what they would've done if Demián Bichir and Nathaniel Dean had showed their love for each other a little more. The "Last Supper" prologue for the film did feature Hallet and Lope kissing and cuddling, but none of it made it into the film's final cut anywhere.
Gay Is OK
Although progress is slow, #LGBT rights are making some headway in Asia. Dean Israelite's recent Power Rangers aired even with one scene where Becky G's Yellow Ranger questions her sexuality, and Beijing even praised themselves for leaving in the already ambiguous LGBT themes of Beauty and the Beast. It is more sad than frustrating, but maybe one day it will change. Admittedly, seeing two men physically kiss is a little different than Hallet and Lope's relationship, but reports are that Covenant seems more than a little disjointed without the David and Walter scene as intended. Speaking to the Hollywood Reporter, one woman identified only as Yu had this to say:
"For the other missing parts, you don't notice or know when it happens, but you can really feel something is missing where the gay kiss is supposed to be."
Censorship is nothing new in China though, Brokeback Mountain was denied release in 2005, while only recently, Logan had 14 minutes clawed off it and Resident Evil: The Final Chapter lost eight. Covenant seems to have particularly suffered though, while the removal of the alien scenes has lead to the titular monsters only being on our screens for one or two minutes. The Chinese government has laws in place to protect children from sex or violence, while their TV channels still refuse to show any form of homosexual relationship. Seeing Ellen Ripley lock tongues with a Xenomorph would probably be acceptable, but apparently Fassbender on Fassbender action is "ewwww, YUK!"
Check out the "Last Supper" prologue from Alien: Covenant and don't forget our poll below!
Should China change its censorship laws?
(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)