Okay, sometimes it's a little bit more complicated.
A woman looking for Mr. Right eventually finds a great guy with all the right things she's looking for - but it turns out he's homosexual, leading to the dismissive statement about straight men. This is loaded with the Unfortunate Implication
that only (and all) gay men possess the qualities women want—tenderness, consideration, etc.—while heterosexual men are pretty much primitive cavemen or perverted Jerkasses
who don't know how to act in public and treat other people.
Ironically, there is no shortage of gay men saying the reverse: that all the good men are taken or straight
, admiring the stereotypical positive traits of straight men (masculine mannerisms, straightforward with emotions, laid back attitude, etc.). There's some Truth in Television
here though; given human nature
, healthy relationships
are a seller's market
- the most desired goods are either "previously purchased" or otherwise "unavailable for sale" — on both
sides. Not to mention people's tendancy to make sly, humorous negative observations along the lines of Murphy's Law
. ("All the good men are gay… isn't that just my luck.")
Compare to Incompatible Orientation
, where she may still love him despite his orientation. Also compare Sorry, I'm Gay
where he may actually be straight and still trying to ward off her advances. The Fag Hag
is this trope turned Up to Eleven
and happens if the woman in question eventually gives up on straight men and prefers the company of gay men, even though she knows she will never get any of them. This may be the attitude the Last Het Romance
of a gay man takes after he outs himself.
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- Happens in this ad by an insurance company; not only the good men, but all men in the world are gay.
- In the movie of PS I Love You, Lisa Kudrow's character repeatedly asks out guys by asking them first if they are single, then asking if they're gay.
- Happens — oh so much — in Love and Other Disasters.
- Zack and Miri Make a Porno — Miri's high school crush returns to their small town for a high school reunion. Well ... he brought his boyfriend. And they're both porn stars.
- In a rare gender swap of this, the main character of Chasing Amy finally finds the perfect girl for himself: she's smart, funny, attractive, witty, creative, and talented. But she's a lesbian.
- Played for laughs in In & Out, where after Emily (played by Joan Cusack) finds out her fiancee is actually gay, she hits on another man, who also is gay. The result is a bit of a Heroic BSOD and the Crowning Moment of Funny in the movie.
- In Clueless, the female main character falls for an attractive male classmate. The way that she fails to notice that he's gay, when most of the audience and their school friends will have spotted the fact within minutes if not seconds, is a big sign that she's not quite as smart as she thinks.
- Comes up in the Alex Rider movie — Jack, the American housekeeper, mentions that "the problem with this country is that all the good-looking men are either gay or married."
- Happens in many a Lifetime Movie of the Week film. Being gay is pretty much the only way a human male can appear in one of these and not be depicted as a horrible monster, in fact.
- A riff in the Jack Frost episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000:
Every time I meet a man, he's either gay or a bear.
- Frasier episode "Out With Dad". Martin pretends to be gay, to fend off the advances of an older woman. When asked by her daughter, she sighs, "Opera queen" in a tone that clearly states they're quite common. Subverted when Martin's gay act makes him a perfect target for the daughter's uncle.
- It must be noted that Martin only goes along with her when she assumes he's gay when he stumbles over why he can't date her.
- Doctor Who, 'The Unicorn and the Wasp' gives us this exchange, after Donna notices some 1920s-style Ho Yay.
Donna: 'All the decent men are on the other bus.'
The Tenth Doctor: 'Or Time Lords.'
- In one episode of The War At Home, Kenny complimented on Hillary, Larry's sister and eventually spent a lot of time with her. Hillary proposed Kenny to be her boyfriend by kissing him, but Kenny avoid himself from the kiss because he's got a crush on Larry (hence he's gay). But then he's Flying Under the Gaydar, so he had to lie that he doesn't want to be her boyfriend because he wants to treat her like a sister.
- On Eureka, after discovering that her New Old Flame is actually a Ridiculously Human Robot, Jo complains that all the good ones are "either married, gay, or robots".
- Subverted by the Modern Family third-season episode "Treehouse". After inverting Sorry, I'm Gay when Cameron wins a bet with Mitchell and their likewise-gay friend Longinus by getting a woman at the bar to give him her phone number (funnier still when you keep in mind that Eric Stonestreet is straight in real life), Cameron winds up getting close enough to her to not want to let her know until Mitchell shames him into doing it. But when he does, after hiding any evidence of Mitchell or Lily from their apartment before she comes over, it turns out that she knew all along; she just wanted to have a gay male friend because it would be cool. He then rebukes her for viewing him through a tropish lens (perhaps angry that his portrayal didn't fool her), and then just as Mitchell returns the episode subverts its own subversion: she makes the angry, hurt speech you'd expect if the show had simply played the trope (ahem) straight.
- 30 Rock:
Liz: What did I tell you?
Jenna: Not to freak out.
Liz: Right, and what else?
Jenna: Stop falling in love with gay guys.
Liz: About this.
- The TV series Happily Divorced explores this trope. Based on Fran Drescher's real life, the character had been married 18 years to a very nice man, but he realized he was gay. They remained good friends and still lived in the same house even after the divorce.
- In Game of Thrones, Sansa has had a crush on Loras Tyrell since the first season, and in the third finds some of the little happiness she's had lately when she finds out she might be able to marry him. She's completely ignorant of his real sexuality and the marriage gets called off before it can happen. Similarly Brienne of Tarth is in love with Renly Baratheon, the lover of the aforementioned Loras, since he's one of the few men who's ever been nice to her and is similarly ignorant of his orientation.
- Described in the spoof country song, "All the Men I've Loved are Either Married, Gay or Dead".
- The Weezer song "Pink Triangle" is about a man who finds his dream woman, only to discover that she's a lesbian.
- The Robbie Williams song "Supreme" includes the line "And all the best women are married, and all the handsome men are gay."
- At the end of the music video for Carly Rae Jepsen's "Call Me Maybe", the hot guy she's been singing about writes "call me maybe" to one of her male bandmates.
- In Doonesbury, Mike's secretary Marcia Feinbloom set out to prove to Mike that all the good men were either married or gay. She called out to a good-looking jogger, asking if he were married or gay, and he answered, "Both." note She then turned to Mike and said, "See? It's getting worse!"
- In Non Sequitur, Danae and Lucy pretend to be grown women at a bar. Danae denounces the character of all men and dismisses Lucy's immediate counterexample as gay. (Which implies that gays aren't actual men.)
- This is Eglante's reaction to learning that Galehaut is gay in the contemporary Arthur, King of Time and Space. (In the baseline arc, Eglante and Galehaut are in a relationship, although she does sometimes wonder about his knightly devotion to Lancelot. In the space arc, Eglante and Galehaut are in a relationship, and it's not clear if she knows he's also attracted to Lancelot or not.)
- Susan's introduction to Justin's gayness in El Goonish Shive.
- Played with in Girls Only, where at a school with over 400 girls and 32 men, they only think that the men are all gay. It turns out, they're actually straight, they just like to pretend so that the fanservice they deal out allows them to be given better treatment.
- Fletcher of Nothing Nice To Say actively attacks this trope in one strip, when a woman at a bar utters it practically word for word. His response? "You mean, why are the only guys you find non-threatening the ones with no possible ulterior motives to sleep with you? Yeah, the mind boggles." Fletcher is, perhaps rather obviously, far from the best example to the contrary of this trope...
- Played with in Shortpacked!. Amber's mom comes to visit, and is initially unimpressed with her boyfriend Mike. She would rather her daughter pursue her gay friend Ethan ("I hear they can fix these people in camps"). When one of Amber's other co-workers runs past screaming in terror because two beautiful women want to have sex with himnote , Amber's mom asks if there are any straight people in this town. Amber says it's just her and Mike, to which her mom replies "No wonder."
- Sticky Dilly Buns:
- Amber occasionally invokes this trope, usually when she's complaining about her dating problems in the presence of the Camp Gay Dillon, if only to flatter him.
- Minor character Clara uses a variation of the phrase, again in relation to Dillon, here.
- As a matter of cultural opinion, Japanese women have the lowest average opinion of the romantic ability of their own country's male population, compared to women from any other country who have rated their own men. Japan is also a country where women (of all ages and social backgrounds) are far more likely to be fans of the Boys Love, and these relationships are usually portrayed with far more frank romance than Japanese straight relationships. So, as a female Japanese culture-wide attitude, All The Good Men Are Gay. Or are from Korean soap operas.
- The feeling found in many a poor woman/girl when they find out their celebrity crush is gay. Unless they're a Yaoi Fangirl.
- Of course, many gay men only wish this were true.