In tomorrow night’s Season 2 premiere of Disney Channel’s ‘Andi Mack’, one of the shows main characters, 13-yr-old “Cyrus”, will come out as gay. This marks an unprecedented and historical day not only for Disney, but for the entire LGBT community.
Disney released a statement saying, “Andi Mack is a story about ‘tweens’ figuring out who they are, (creator) Terri Minsky, the cast and everyone involved in the show takes great care in ensuring that it’s appropriate for all audiences and sends a powerful message about inclusion and respect for humanity.”
Andi Mack currently holds the top spot on the Disney Channel network and the top series among young girls (median age 10). Because of its extensive reach, Disney hopes to encourage inclusivity and acceptance among young people and dismiss the stigma against the LGBT community.
The storyline will follow the show’s main 13-yr-old character, Andi, as she vies for the attention of her long-time crush, Jonah. Her male friend, Cyrus, will also develop feelings for Jonah, and he’ll eventually come out to others as he continues his journey of self-discovery.
While Disney is receiving a surplus of backlash, the network is receiving plenty of support from surrounding organizations. The president of GLAAD (Formally the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) said, “With more and more young people coming out as LGBTQ, Andi Mack is reflecting the lives and lived experiences of so many LGBTQ youth around the country. Television reflects the real life world and today that includes LGBTQ youth who deserve to see their lives depicted on their favorite shows. Disney has been a leader in LGBTQ inclusion and there are so many young people who will be excited to see Cyrus’ story unfold.”