Greg: Why are we always holding hands?Have I Mentioned I Am Gay is when we know that a particular character is gay because we are told so, often repeatedly, and not because we actually see them display any sort of romantic feeling or sexual attraction toward characters of the same sex. The character is out of the closet, and may even proudly talk about past relationships, but we, the audience, never see them going on dates with the same gender, let alone actually having sex. You might notice that on United States TV, you'll see girl-on-girl kissing, but never boy-on-boy unless it's a huge punchline, because Most Writers Are Male and Girl-on-Girl Is Hot. Every once in a while, especially in the later seasons of a show, the writers will become aware of this trope and suddenly (well, as sudden as it can be after three or four seasons) do a single episode that deals with the character's sexuality. Often involves Token Gays and Unfortunate Implications, the main implication being that gays are lonely. The polar opposite of Ambiguously Gay, and often the inverse of the Transparent Closet. Sometimes overlaps with Straight Gay. See also: Word of Gay (when this comes from an author announcement rather than in-story), Get Back in the Closet, Urban Legend Love Life. If the character does get enough action for their sexuality to be more than an Informed Attribute, but still less than others, that's But Not Too Gay. When involving bisexuals, that is But Not Too Bi. Contrast Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?.
Terry: How else would people know we're gay?
Greg: Oh. Yeah, you're right.
Terry: How else would people know we're gay?
Greg: Oh. Yeah, you're right.
open/close all folders
- Both parodied and subverted in Scott Pilgrim via Scott's roommate Wallace. We initially learn that Wallace is gay not because of his actions, but rather because no-one will shut up about it to the point where it becomes blatantly superfluous. Later we do actually see Wallace in relationships with men, however it's often intentionally exaggerated to draw attention to itself (especially so in The Movie).
- The only reason anyone knows that Northstar from Alpha Flight and the X-Men is gay is because he can't seem to go five minutes without referencing that fact. Less so that now he actually has a steady boyfriend and in fact married him in a high profile event, but in the days right after he came out, it seemed like he couldn't stop coming out.
- Wiccan and Hulkling of the Young Avengers tend to go out of their way to remind people of the fact that they're dating
- Averted in Gillen's run - we actually get to see more of their relationship and what they're like by themselves, so they're not just paying lipservice to it anymore.
- Iceman was suddenly revealed to be gay in All-New X-Men #40 after having his mind probed by Jean Grey. Of course, given the amount of Ho Yay surrounding the character in the past, this wasn't too out-of-the-blue a revelation for some.
- Punisher: War Zone issue 5 brings us this lovely gem of dialogue:
"So, you ever been in a firefight with a lesbian before?"
- The only reason why we know that Troy, Eve's male BFF in Blast from the Past is gay at all is because Eve tells us.
Eve: (to Adam, about Troy) "He's gay, by the way."Adam: (to Troy, thinking Eve means that Troy is happy) "Well, good for you!"Troy: (confused) "Well, I do try..."
- Poseidon: The lone gay character announces his breakup with another man.
- JD from Saving Silverman mentions he's gay a few times. It's an unusual example in that neither he nor anyone who knows him has ever considered him gay, and he got the idea into his head only because the film's villain brainwashed him into believing it. But then at the end of the film it turns out he is gay - but we still don't know whether it always was so and he was in denial about it, or if he completely internalized the brainwashing.
- Damian from Mean Girls being "almost too gay to function" doesn't seem to involve him dating or even being attracted to men. Although to some extent this can be Truth in Television for gay teens in high school (the not-dating part) as there are often few openly gay kids around. And then there's the moment near the end of the film where he and Janice try kissing and he is immediately turned off of it.
- In A Brother's Price, Cira mentions her girlfriend, who left her some time ago. Later on, she again refers to said girlfriend to emphasize that she's really, really gay. She just pretends, because some women want to rape Jerin, and she wants to take the fun out of making her watch. She's actually bi, and eagerly kissed Jerin earlier.
- In The House of Night, Damien is kind of like this, until he gets a boyfriend (so there at least is an excuse to mention that he is gay).
- In Otherland, Susan van Bleeck's butler, Jeremiah Dako, is openly gay but, due to the circumstances of his employment and later, his involvement with the protagonists' quest, he is never shown having a relationship. He laments this in character, subtly lampshading the trope.
- In Cell, one of the characters randomly reveals he is gay for one line. It is never brought up again.
- In the first book of The Echo Case Files, Tycho drops into conversation that itís not that another character is too young for her, but too male.
Live Action TV
- Will & Grace spent a while getting Will a boyfriend while securing Grace as his soul mate. A prominent episode in the first season being one where Grace has a boring romance in the typical manner with some guy in Story A, with Story B focusing on Will talking on the phone to some guy that he liked, in an unnecessary, one-episode version of He Who Must Not Be Seen.
- Not to mention Jack, most of the time. Sure, he's sometimes seen with a date, but mostly he's seen talking about being on or going on a date.
- One of the biggest issues viewers had with One Big Happy. It wasn't that the lead character was a lesbian. It was that the show couldn't go five minutes without mentioning that she was a lesbian, but didn't seem to develop her character beyond that, and rarely actually show her in a real lesbian relationship.
- The whole premise of Steve Agee and Brian Posehn's characters from The Sarah Silverman Program.
- Eric Van Der Woodsen from Gossip Girl might also fit this. One episode featured his "outing" in it's A-story, yet to date he never seems to be closer than 8 inches to his "boyfriend". If you were to watch the show muted, you would probably just guess they were just friends.
- Serena Southerlyn from Law & Order. Less so than most in that the show doesn't really show any of the main characters romances.
- George Huang from SVU as well. He's mentioned twice that he is gay and has never had even a mention of a relationship.
- Jody, Billy Crystal's character in Soap, verbally informed the audience of his sexual preference pretty much every episode, yet you saw him going out with women far more often than with other guys. This was because the show's producers and ABC's standards and practices department had to walk on eggshells with regards to their treatment of Jody. A few years earlier, NBC had canceled the sitcom Snip less than a month before its pilot episode's scheduled debut — it didn't even get the chance to be a One-Episode Wonder — because of the public backlash over what would have been the first open gay character on an American TV series.
- Ashley's friend Griffin in The Secret Life of the American Teenager. He did eventually end up getting a love interest (Peter), but they've seldom appeared since they hooked up.
- Queer as Folk, strangely enough. Vic is undoubtedly gay, but is portrayed as almost asexual for a long time. Partly Truth in Television, as it can sometimes be much harder for older gay men — especially ones who are HIV+, as Vic was — to find the same sort of sexual and romantic opportunities that their younger counterparts have.
- Britannia High had Jez, in which his father mentions him being gay and Jez confirms it later on. There's also when a guy who likes Jez tells Lola, one of Jez's friends to ask him out for him, in which she does, but Jez thinks she's pointing to an ugly guy stood next to the other guy, who both have similar shirts. Hilarity Ensues. However, this is never mentioned again and Jez does not get a boyfriend/kiss/hug/love interest at all. Instead, he gets a kiss from a girl.
- Glee: The first few episodes spend time reinforcing the fact that Kurt Hummel is gay - his crush on classmate Finn is a plot point during the first season - and yet the boy doesn't get a kiss until season two. After that, he gets boyfriend Blaine and they share varying degrees of physical affection throughout the rest of the series. This is of course Truth in Television seeing as they lived in homophobic small town Ohio and the odds of finding love when you're the only out gay kid at your school is pretty slim.
- In Living Color! had the Overly Confident Gay Man, played by Jim Carrey, who would often introduce himself as "Hi. (beat) I'm gay." In his first sketch, he incessantly hits on every man within his field of vision, but when one actually reciprocates to any degree he goes directly to feeling harassed and makes a big deal of it, much to the other guy's embarrassment. In his second sketch, his sexuality briefly comes into question when he, lying unconscious on the floor, gets really into the CPR a hot woman gives him, but then it turns out she's a post-op transgender man, and the Overly Confident Gay Man is in fact happy to discover this. They immediately leave for a gay club together.
- Daffyd from Little Britain. Played with, in that his isolation from other gay people is entirely self-imposed due to his blind spot about being "the only gay in the village", which causes him to reject the (many, many) other gay people in the village as not being gay even when he is set up on a date, or has the opportunity to join a gay social group, or learns that he's not even the only gay person in his own family.
- Kay from Marry Me. Other than mentioning that she's gay and a token "boy, I sure do love women" comment every episode, her romantic life is rarely shown. It's not until the eighth episode that any specifics are given and she talks about an ex and apparently hooks up with her, but their interactions past eye-contact occur almost entirely off-screen. It's not until the twelfth episode that she's actually shown interacting with a romantic interest.
- The MTV series of Teen Wolf features Danny, who so far has had his not otherwise apparent sexuality referenced as many times as he has spoken lines.
- They make good on his sexuality in season two, with an episode taking place at a gay club, and showing Danny lamenting his breakup as his ex dances nearby. And of course, there's a funny bit where Scott, using Super Senses to try and find a werewolf, sniffs Danny who helpfully pipes up he's wearing Armani.
- Season 3 features a fairly explicit scene with Danny and Ethan in a motel room. There are also two boys making out in the background at Lydia's party in season two, and one of them appears to be Danny at first glance but isn't.
- In Season 4, there's new character Mason, who also fits this role. Even worse, he seems to have replaced Danny, who made no appearances the whole season.
- Mason, too, averts this in later season by getting an on-screen relationship with Corey, one which also forwards the overall plot in several instances.
- Warehouse 13 has Steve Jinks, who mentions that he is gay while Claudia is going on about how they can't have an Office Romance. He is Straight Gay so it would be hard to figure out. He never had any romantic relationships in the season, but neither did any of the straight characters.
- After this revelation, references to Steve's sexuality pop up significantly more often, nearly reaching critical mass in the final season. Examples include Pete mistaking a romantic kiss from Myka as Steve using a transformation artifact to trick him, as well as Steve himself uttering the phrase "okay, no more Mister Nice Gay".
- Top Chef features at least one openly homosexual contestant in almost every season. Many of them make sure everybody knows their orientation as soon as possible. Ash in Season 6 states that he's the only chef "with a boyfriend," and then pauses for a second before elaborating, "a same-sex boyfriend."
- Channel 4's reality contest Four In A Bed featuring battling small hotels competing for the accolade of best B&B of the week pits teams of owners against each other. Generally small boarding houses run by husband-and-wife couples are featured. But in any given week, there is always one very obvious husband-and-husband or wife-and-wife among the teams. Their sexuality is never an issue and is never explicitly mentioned. But this is so obvious to viewers that a subtext of the show is "spot the gay couple".
- Tara, the first openly gay character on The Walking Dead, suffers from this a bit. In her first appearance she manages to drop her sexuality into a casual conversation, seemingly so that Lily and "Brian" can start up their romance without the worry of a Sibling Triangle developing between the only three adults in their group. The next episode introduces Alicia as a love interest for Tara, but though we're told repeatedly that they're in as much of a committed relationship as Lily and Brian, we only see a couple of snippets of conversation between them and Alicia coming to Tara's aid during a confrontation. Then Alicia dies in the next episode, though Tara is the only member of the group to make it through alive.
- Roommates takes this to amusing lengths. One of the two main characters, Bowser Koopa, Jr., is blatantly openly gay, and makes no secret of it. But most of the people he knows in college (like track teammates Olly and Mondo) continually presume that all his flirtations and homoerotic innuendo are Gay Bravado, never actually believing he's gay. This comes in sharp contrast to Junior's boyfriend Giancarlo Rosato, who is not that conspicuously gay, but ends up noticed by deeply homophobic Olly and Mondo for the "gay" ear piercing on his right ear. As they start to beat Gian up for it, Junior comes to his rescue, announcing that the piercing was a gift from him as Gian's boyfriend. They are genuinely shocked that Junior actually is -- and has always been -- gay. Then Olly and Mondo go home, discuss what happened earlier, and then have sex. Twice.
- Szark Sturtz of Dominic Deegan to a rather ridiculous extent after he came out as gay rather than bisexual. The snarkdom picked up on it and started sarcastically referring to him as "Szark, the gay man who's gay (he's gay)," and the like.
- Dumbing of Age has Becky, a girl who comes from a very repressive home and was gleefully shouting "I'm a lesbian!" in public.
Joyce: I just wish everyone could leave the closet with as much joy as Becky did.
Ethan: She didn't just leave it. Becky nuked the closet from orbit, just to be sure.
- Consequently, Book 5, which features the story arc where she comes out, is called "Hey, Guess What, I'm a Lesbian!".
- This Yogscast video with Simon Lane and Lewis Brindley (a Gag Dub of a Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D trailer):
Reporter: OH GOD! We lost the video! I'm still gay, but we don't know where Dave is!
- Averted/inverted in Welcome to Night Vale. Local radio host Cecil has a massive crush on Carlos the Scientist, and frequently gushes about him on the radio. Eventually the two of them enter a relationship, go on a date, kiss, and move in together. Despite this, the word "gay" is never actually used to describe either of them. It can be assumed that in a town as strange as Night Vale, sexual orientation isn't something worth making a fuss over.
- There was a Very Special Episode of The Simpsons guest starring John Waters that revolved around homosexuality. Though the Waters character was undeniably flamboyant, one awkward conversation with Smithers aside, he never actually shows his sexual preference.
- Archer: Ray Gillette's sexuality is frequently mentioned but never really demonstrated outside of the occasional Cutaway Gag of him hanging out with male strippers.
- Stewie Griffin of Family Guy is constantly hinted as being gay but it's never amounted to anything, which is a bit suspicious considering the amount of girls he's been with or crushed on.
- Terry and Greg from American Dad! apply to this; though their relationship has driven the plot several times and they are common characters, the most intimate they get is holding hands and the occasional innuendo. Even lampshaded in "Don't Look a Smith Horse in the Mouth", which supplies the quote at the top of the article.
- Subverted in "A Jones for a Smith", where Greg and Terry are actually shown sleeping in the spooning position wearing only underwear. Granted, it's very brief and nowhere near as intimate as Stan and Francine are shown, but tropes aren't discredited overnight.