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Ambiguously Gay / Live-Action TV

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"I want to be: An actor"

  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Alphonso "Mack" Mackenzie, so much so that roughly half of the entries on the series' Ho Yay page involve him in someway, especially in his interactions with the Ambiguously Bi Fitz, who are currently enjoying Fan-Preferred Couple status on the Internet. Most of the questions surrounding Mack's sexuality come from the fact that when he discusses his exes with the team during one episode he never specifies the gender of his former significant others, and it seems very deliberate on the writing team's part. His only significant relationship with a woman is with Bobbi. Then again he does start up a relationship with Elena so perhaps he falls under Ambiguously Bi.
  • 'Allo 'Allo!:
    • Lieutenant Gruber who had very camp manners and openly courted René. Word of God confirmed he's gay during a reunion special, but the Where Are They Now epilogue leaves it ambiguous by showing that he married Helga after the war and had children with her.
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    • General von Flockenstuffen is said to be "a bit this-a-way and that-a-way."
  • The Amanda Show: Penelope, who wanted to be Amanda's "best friend" really badly. The website plays it even thicker with tons of captions over her affections for Amanda, her saying she doesn't find a male actor on the show attractive, and her all but outright drooling over cheerleaders. One episode did have her attracted to a boy though.
  • Are You Afraid of the Dark?: Sardo, if you go by stereotypes. His effeminate mannerisms such as earrings, a high voice and quasi-obsessive tidiness could be interpreted this way.
  • Are You Being Served?: Mr. Humphries. He was effeminate, camp, and often talked about his dubious 'leisurely activities', yet it was still hinted that he might actually be straight. John Inman, the actor who played him, came out of the closet years after the show aired. Ironically, Word of God from Inman himself was that Mr. Humphries actually was straight.
  • Arrested Development:
    • Tobias. The (often) very obvious homosexual undertones in his lines are possibly the show's longest running gag.
      "I wouldn't mind kissing that man between the cheeks, so to speak."
    • In Season 4, a lot of Gob's more eccentric relationship behaviors in the first three seasons retroactively became Ambiguously Gay. Series creator Mitch Hurwitz has confirmed several times in post-s4 interviews that Gob is gay, but that Tobias is straight.
  • As the World Turns: Reid Oliver. He and Luke (who was out) hated each other, but had loads of chemistry and the amount of screentime they had together made it seem like he was brought on to be Luke's love interest. When Luke accuses Reid of being homophobic, Reid just laughs and tells him that he himself is gay. He wasn't hiding it, it was just that nobody asked.
  • The Big Bang Theory:
    • Raj likes girls, but he can't speak in front of them unless buzzed. He also likes cooking, baking, romance novels, Twilight, and chick flicks. In one episode he describes himself as metrosexual, telling his parents he likes "women and their skin care products". He also has a lot of homosexual subtext with his best friend Howard, to the point where Leonard's mother, a noted psychiatrist, suggests they have an "ersatz homosexual marriage". And not to mention their Internet kissing make out session.
    • Amy. While she is in a committed (if sexless) relationship with Sheldon, she has a tendency to make some comments about her "bestie" Penny and her beauty. And there was the time she got drunk and kissed her. And the time she wanted to have a bachelorette party that involved stripping naked and painting on each other. Also the time she said Penny had a better chance of getting with her than Leonard did. The list goes on. Of course a lot of it is simply social awkwardness and over expressing her joy at actually having friends, especially a friend with social graces like Penny (aka the resident Cool Big Sis). Amy is more Ambiguously Bi.
  • Breaking Bad:
    • Gale Boetticher is vaguely effeminate or at least Camp Straight from the start, with interests in karaoke and opera. That's not confirmation in and of itself, but In Season 4, when he dies the gangbanger who had been assigned to keep track of him through all of Season 3 has a clearly emotional reaction that suggests much more than a professional relationship. In Gale's lab notes, his dedication to "W.W." sounds more like it's referring to a lover than a mentor. But it could also be referring to Walt Whitman, the source of the quote.
    • Gus Fring. His relationship with his former business partner Max Arciega was extremely close and he endowed a chemistry scholarship in Max's name years after his death. Word of God has said this is a valid interpretation of their relationship.
  • Buck Rogers in the 25th Century: Non-humanoid but male-voiced robot Dr. Theopolis. In the pilot movie, he calls Buck "attractive" within seconds of first meeting him, and all he seems to notice about Ardala is her Nice Hat.
  • Buffyverse:
    • Andrew was such before he came out as gay in the canon comics continuation. He all but said he was in love with Warren, and did as he said because "He promised we'd be together, but he was just using me. He never really loved... hanging out with us." (He changed direction of that last sentence rather uncomfortably, so it seems likely he was closeted). He has rather clear moments of lust over Spike, Xander, and Jonathan Archer. Word of God confirms that he was at least bisexual, but never got around to acknowledging it to himself — thus why it was never acknowledged on the show. The actor who played him is gay, so had some fun with adding this to the character. Then there's his Angel appearance (where he was flanked by two Ms. Fanservice examples), and then again in the comics, which had him as unimpressed with walking in on two girls making out and implying that his Angel cameo was a feint. The comic book eventually did confirm Andrew is gay.
      Andrew: *On seeing Spike and Anya have sex on a table* He [Spike] is so cool... [beat] And, I mean, the girl is hot. Too.
    • Jonathan seemed very close to Andrew, especially when they were in Mexico, where they slept in the same bed.
    • The writers couldn't decide whether Willow or Xander should be gay at the start of the series, so both of them fell into this category at times (most notably, Xander being Mistaken for Gay by Larry, and Willow saying "I think I'm kinda gay" in reference to her doppelganger). Eventually, Willow came out and Xander became purely heterosexual. Xander still had moments of this after Willow came out, memorably in "Intervention".
    • Lorne, the Pylean demon from Angel, may be a much more subtle example of this trope. He constantly flirts with "Angelcake", but then again, we don't even know what gender he is, given that his mother looks like a huge bearded man. The actor stated that he always saw Lorne as an asexual character who enjoyed being alone with a few close friends.
  • Burn Notice: Mason Gilroy, the Psycho for Hire Evil Brit, seems to be flirting with Michael in a lot of their scenes together.
    • Especially the scene where Gilroy scans up and down Michael's body as Michael joins him in a hot tub while "I've got a mad little crush on you" plays on the soundtrack.
  • The Catherine Tate Show: Parodied with the character of Derek, a man who behaves in the stereotypical manner of a Camp Gay but becomes very offended whenever anyone assumes he is homosexual. His Catchphrase: "Who, dear? Me, dear? Gay, dear? No, dear!"
  • The Colbert Report: Stephen Colbert (the character)(and frankly, on The Daily Show, too) straddles the line between this and Transparent Closet. Of course, Stephen Colbert is also in a loving, committed relationship with his soulmate, a gun called Sweetness.
  • Combat Hospital: Dr. Grace Pedersen. When a female character flirts with her and asks her out, she only refuses because she's already taken (never mentioning said partner's gender), and she also claims to have her appetite for men spoiled by her husband.
  • Community: When the Dean has to pretend to be gay for political reasons (or more specifically, just gay), Frankie Dart mentions that she doesn't want her sexuality to define her. Jeff and the Dean share a look, and realize they have no idea what Frankie's preferences are. Later episodes reveal that the rest of the group has a pool going, which pisses Frankie off when she finds out about it. Frankie gets tiny bits of Ship Tease with both Jeff and Annie, but the moments are small enough that she could just be worried about their codependent relationship.
  • Dan for Mayor: One episode featured the titular Dan trying to win the support of an ambiguous conservative for his campaign. As he tries to interrogate the real estate agent for clues on his sexual orientation, the answers he gets are all the more ambiguous.
  • Doctor Who:
  • Downton Abbey: Pretty footman Jimmy was deliberately set up as this as part of a Lured into a Trap plot for Thomas, the only gay man on the show, who is portrayed as a Depraved Homosexual. Given that he shows no real interest in girls unless he needs to prove his heterosexuality and has thrown some rather warm glances in Thomas' direction lately, it's still ambiguous.
  • Electra Woman and Dyna Girl: In the 2016 series there are some hints that Dyna Girl might be a lesbian, but nothing's ever clarified. She has a butch style and it's hinted may feel more than platonically for her friend Electra Woman.
  • Ellen: Pre-reveal Ellen Morgan. Jay Leno's take on the reveal was "... and in other news, Bill Cosby has announced that he is, in fact, black."
  • Euphoria: Lexi is one of the few female characters in the series with no male love interest, and her mom offhandedly makes reference to her "little girlfriends". There are also some hints that she might have a crush on Rue.
  • Eureka: Vincent. He's camp, he comments on a male character's attractiveness in the finale, and on the hypothetical attractiveness of "Joe" when he's forgotten Jo exists, and when the other male characters are talking about wanting to kiss Beverly he says "Even I've thought about it", implying this is unusual. Apart from that, he's more concerned with his cooking than relationships of any kind.
  • The Fast Show: Ron Manager and Tommy Stein.
    • In one sketch, Ron starts rambling on about BSE (Mad Cow Disease), and eventually ends up telling us that parts of the dead cows are used in the cosmetics industry.
      Ron: ... which is another good reason not to kiss girls!
    • Ron and Tommy have also spent discussing which football players are the most attractive (and which ones used to be but have lost it now).
  • Frasier:
    • Gill. Ambiguously Gay from day one, claimed to be married to a woman who fit Butch Lesbian stereotypes, then later official came out as gay. His producer as well, whom Gill admits he's never seen with a woman before.
    • Niles on Frasier exhibits all the stereotypes, except that he's clearly deeply enamored with Daphne. Niles fits the trope so well in-universe that other characters occasionally assume he's gay (either not knowing about Daphne, or figuring that she's The Beard).
    • Frasier was Mistaken for Gay as well on a few occasions. At one point, he assertively tries to get his new boss to date a lonely Daphne, but doesn't realize the man is gay and thinks Frasier himself is the one pursuing him (it also turns out they have a lot in common). Even the great Patrick Stewart became his sugar daddy for an episode, and Frasier of course was oblivious as to what was really going on until the very end. Reached critical mass when he was trying to help Niles find a wedding ring for Daphne, and the way the two bickered about and then agreed on a ring in the store was greeted by a round of applause with everyone thinking they were a gay couple, to Martin's exasperation.
  • Game of Thrones: As in the books, the eunuch Lord Varys seems to have what might be a romantic interest in his "little birds," which are young boys uses as spies. When the bisexual Oberyn questions him openly about which sex he preferred before his castration, Varys claims that he preferred neither boys nor girls and never had an interest in desire. This may simply be a convenient lie or coping mechanism, but Varys also claims to have been castrated as a young child, before he would have experienced any sexual desire, so it's possible that he's telling the truth. Or he could always have been asexual.
  • Gavin & Stacey: Bryn certainly shows a lot more interest in men than women, but it's never confirmed as he's entirely chaste and implied to be a virgin. Given that he's unfazed by other people's homosexuality, it seems not so much that he's in denial as that the thought he is gay has just somehow never occurred to him.
  • The Get Down: Shaolin Fantastic ("The Lady-Killing Romantic") has a LOT of Ho Yay with protagonist Zeke, which a lot if characters directly reference.
    Mylene: Maybe you have the hots for my boyfriend. (Zeke)
  • Gilmore Girls: Michel hit every Camp Gay stereotype (obsessed with his appearance, dotes on his mother, French!) but he did once mention a girlfriend (who went unseen).
    • As of the Netflix revival, Michel is married to a man (who we never see), so it's no longer ambiguous.
  • Glee:
    • The impeccably-dressed Kurt, until he admits to Mercedes that he is gay in episode three. Though everyone else in universe and out already knew.
    • Kind of a Running Gag with the Dalton Academy Warblers, as people assume that they are gay. All of them. One of the judges at a Regionals competition asks if they are a school for gay boys. Even Blaine seems a little unsure about it, at one point in the sixth season asking if any of them are straight when they protest a girl trying to join their choir. For added humor, whenever the question gets asked of one of them directly, the Warbler who answers is almost invariably Camp, yet denies the allegation vehemently.
  • The Good Wife: Kalinda. The show likes to be ambiguous about it (or pretend that they are being so), but even though Kalinda has made out with guys while on cases, it seems strongly implied that she prefers ladies on her own time.
  • Gunpowder: As in real life, it's unclear whether King James I of England and VI of Scotland has homosexual relationships with his favorites in court or whether they're just extremely close friends.
  • Harry and Paul:
    • Danny the cultured fisherman. He doesn't appear to have any interest in women, and, when asking Kenny to come to a posh restaurant with him, it sounds like he is asking him out.
    • The Posh Scaffolders. They both act camp and very rarely discuss women (outside of heckling them, which they only do, according to a tearful Darren, because they were 'trying to be friendly'). They are also constantly touching each other. Kev frequently calls Darren 'dear'.
  • How I Met Your Mother: Ted's boss Hammond Druthers goes through a nervous breakdown and it's implied that it's because of repressed homosexuality, most notably manifested in his designing a skyscraper shaped like a penis which he refers to as "the male organ of love" in a shaking voice. He also lovingly describes his wife as mannish.
  • Heroes: In Season 1, Claire's friend Zach is never explicitly stated to be gay but all of the hints are there, and his big "I know who I am — I like who I am" speech doesn't leave much to the imagination. Then the whole "best friend has super powers and a serial killer after her" plot took precedence, his character was ignored and then he disappeared altogether.
  • iCarly: Sam is either this or Ambiguously Bi. She seems to like guys but none of them ever last past one episode, including the one in "iMake Sam Girlier" that such a big deal was made over. That episode also seemed to lampshade Sam's Butch Lesbian behaviors. Also, she and Carly have a lot of Les Yay. There is also speculation that Carly's brother Spencer might be gay, because of the episode where he was wearing a dress and dancing with cute guys saying, "I think I like it."
  • Impulse (2018): Jenna gets a little here, though so far it's just foreshadowing. When looking up porn for "research" on how to please a guy, she briefly pauses with interest on the "lesbian" keyword. And when she later has sex with him, she doesn't really enjoy it. She's confirmed to be gay in the following season.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia: Mac, for much of the series. While he's initially an unambiguous straight guy with an adolescent fixation on buff action stars, as the series goes on, more and more jokes suggest that Mac is a closeted gay man whose Catholic faith causes him to be an Armored Closet Gay. In Season 12 Episode 6, the ambiguity is finally removed.
  • iZombie has a meta example with Evan, Liv's brother. Due to time constraints, a scene where he comes out to Liv was removed from Season 2. Because the canon status of the scene was never cleared up, neither was Evan's sexuality.
  • On the second season of The Joe Schmo Show, Joe Schmo 2, a parody of reality shows in which everyone is an actor except for the chosen Schmoes, the character of Gerald is billed as the "Gotta-Be-Gay Guy." This season is a parody of reality-romance shows called Last Chance for Love in which the male contestants are competing for the affections of Piper and the female contestants are after Austin. Gerald is supposedly competing for Piper like all of the other guys, but is a bit too effeminate and a bit too into Austin. When they bring in a lie detector and he's asked if out of all the women in the house he's most attracted to Piper, he repeats "Of all the women?" before answering yes and receiving a thumbs-up for a truthful answer. When he's asked if he wants to sleep with Piper, he says yes, and is given a thumbs-down for a lie.
  • Justified:
    • Tim Gutterson is a possible example. In "Veterans", he openly flirts with a (male) bouncer outside of a bar.
      Tim: I love this shit. This shit makes me hard.
      Raylan: Well, now we've both been warned.
    • On the villainous end of things, Wynn Duffy has an odd speech pattern, an obsession with women's tennis, sleeps in a beauty mask, and lives in his trailer with his male bodyguard, Mikey.
  • Just Shoot Me!: It's made fairly clear to the audience that Finch isn't gay, but his family have their doubts (most of the other characters though only played along to annoy Finch). Lampshaded in "Pass the Salt", in which one of his macho big brothers is revealed to be gay instead.
  • Keeping Up Appearances: It was a running joke that Hyacinth and Richard's son Sheridan, who lives with a man named Tarquin (who makes his own curtains, wears silk pyjamas, and has won prizes for embroidery), is possibly gay. Hyacinth however seems blissfully oblivious to the fact, and its heavily implied that Richard either simply pretends not to know for his wife's sake or just doesn't care if his son is gay; he's only bothered that he keeps phoning to ask for money.
  • Keeping Up with the Kardashians : No one in the entire extended Kardashian/Jenner clan (or the media as a whole, really) knows for sure if Kim Kardashian’s best friend, Jonathan, is gay. One episode revolved around them trying to find out, to no avail.
  • The Larry Sanders Show: David Duchovny appeared twice against type as a version of himself whose words and mannerisms constantly had Larry wondering if he was coming on to him.
  • The Latest Buzz: Michael Davies. Being a kid's show, they can't actually state that he is gay but he is teenaged boy who writes the magazine's gossip column, is obsessed with fashion, and loves musicals (and sings the female parts). In the second season, they tried to move away from this characterisation by toughening him up and giving him an interest in girls, with varying degrees of success. In one episode he seems over the moon when a male student compliments his tie, until another character points out that he might have been being sarcastic. Michael then spends the rest of the episode obsessed over whether or not this guy really likes his tie, seeming like he'll be crushed if it turns out he didn't.
  • LazyTown: Robbie Rotten. He’s effeminate, wears makeup and even disguises in drag several times to further his schemes. Despite claiming to hate Sportacus and wanting him to leave the town, Robbie sure spends a lot of time talking about him, touching him and jumping into his arms whenever the slightly-above-average hero shows up.
  • Lewis: Sergeant James Hathaway of refuses to draw neat lines between sexualities or tell Lewis his own orientation. A former seminary student before joining the police, Hathaway seems conflicted about religion and sexuality.
  • Lost in Space: Dr. Zachary Smith, who spoke in an effeminate manner, was a hopeless coward, and whose only real friends were a robot and a young boy.
  • Mad Men: Salvatore falls under this trope for about six episodes before he's resolved as, ah, unambiguous, but that has more to do with the decade he lives in than with maintaining any kind of tension. Compare this to the episode where a more minor character, a copywriter from Europe, very unambiguously outs himself to his coworkers; one look at Sal's face tells you that he was comparing their situations.
  • Malcolm in the Middle: Dabney and Lloyd, Malcolm's two effeminate classmates who like to talk about his eyes and think he is "handsome".
    • It's obvious to those in the universe; Cynthia even brings it up while she and Malcolm are watching the two of them eat lunch. Cynthia claims she can read lips, and fills Malcolm in. It's never determined if she can actually read lips or not.
    • Reese, particularly in the latter seasons as well.
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel: Suzie dresses in a masculine fashion, isn’t married, and once told a man who tried to flirt with her that he was barking up the wrong tree. She also understands that talking about Judy Garland is a code word for being gay while protagonist Midge doesn’t.
  • Brad Bottig on The Middle. He's introduced in Season 1 as Sue's boyfriend, and fits nearly every Camp Gay stereotype. When Sue breaks up with him Mike and Frankie initially assume it's because Sue learned he's gay, although Sue reveals it was due to his smoking habit.
    Sue: (in tears) He was with another guy...
    Frankie: Brick go to your room! (Brick quickly runs offscreen)
    Sue: and they were- and they were smoking! (sobs)

    • Brad and Sue remain close friends after the breakup, giving way to more ambiguous moments. Like this:
      Sue: Brad said a boy likes me!
      Mike: Did he say a boy likes you, or "a boy likes me?"
    • The ambiguity is eventually lessened in Season 7 when he passively comes out as gay to Sue, with the implication that she knew already.
  • Played for Laughs in an episode of Modern Family. Mitch and Cam assume Alex's new boyfriend Michael is gay due to him exhibiting many camp mannerisms, most notably an effeminate voice. Alex denies this at first but eventually confronts him. He was... rather offended by everyone's assumptions.
    Alex: Michael... Are you gay?
    Michael: (camera cuts to Michael running away in tears) Why does everybody think that I'm gay!?
  • The Muppets: Statler and Waldorf are two inseparable old men with reserved box seats at the theater where they make catty remarks about everything. Suggesting it further is that Waldorf's "wife" Astoria is the Statler puppet in drag and Statler himself is never seen with her.
  • Murdoch Mysteries:
    • As James Gillies and his best friend Robert Perry depart from the police station for the first time in "Big Murderer on Campus", James touches Robert's back in a manner which may suggest that there is a greater intimacy between the two of them. Brackenreid wonders out loud, "Just good pals, or something more?" Even less ambiguous by Season 7, where Gillies kisses a struggling Murdoch straight on the lips. However, it could have been just his strategy to shock him as it was his last shot at escaping.
    • Mr. Carducci in "This One Goes to Eleven" is a dandy and has many flamboyant mannerisms, of note, James Pendrick comments that Carducci "...takes an interest in young, male painters".
    • Katie in Sweet Polly Oliver episode "Victor, Victorian" seems highly interested in the fact that Julia is "an unwed doctor living alone", mentions that marriage leaves her "bored and unhappy" and has no qualms about inviting Julia into the secret club. The inevitable betrayal by Julia gets the doctor a disapproving glare from Katie and called "you rat" (not unlike the reaction by Jeffrey when his gay tennis club is busted by Murdoch, in whom he had taken an interest in "Till Death Do Us Part").
    • After the bombing at the start of "War on Terror", Constable Crabtree and Dr. Grace are canvassing the neighbourhood shops when the doctor tries on a hat at a milliner's establishment. The fastidious milliner scolds her sharply for even touching the merchandise, then immediately turns to fawn over the constable, encouraging him to try on a hat and urging the reluctant Crabtree to come to his new shop's opening gala moving sale. As they're walking away, Emily observes that George's forceful manner was more successful at getting the man to give them information than anything she could do. Later, Emily slyly says the shopkeeper would be disappointed to know George is attracted to women.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000: Depending on the episode, Servo and Crow can qualify. In one episode (Racket Girls/Are You Ready For Marriage?) they try to get married and end up with the entire cast in a wrestling match. However, considering they are robots, they may not really understand love.
    • "Brain Guy" Observer was a bigger example of this trope, going into the ladies' restroom with Pearl, dressing up in a stereotypical leather outfit for a "hot date", and refusing to seduce a woman:
      Observer: Oh oh oh, no no, I could never seduce a woman, Pearl.
      Pearl: Oh, because you're...
      Observer: I thought you knew! I am completely, utterly... without a body.
      Pearl: Well, thank you for coming out with that information.
  • The Office: Michael Scott. His unusual obsession with Ryan the temp leads to hilarious moments, such as saying he would have sex with Ryan during a 'who would you sleep with' game, and disturbing moments, like intently peering at Ryan behind the blinds of his office space. Came to a head in Gay Witch Hunt when, to show he is tolerant of gays, tried to kiss Oscar against his will.
  • One Big Happy has Kate when the group first meets her. They decides to play "Gay or Nay" to determine whether Lizzy should pursue her or not.
  • Outlander: The Duke of Sandringham, who is stereotypically effeminate (although this is similar to how many straight "fops" or "dandys" acted), a lifelong bachelor, and played by the openly gay English actor Simon Callow.
  • Power Rangers:
    • Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue: Kelsey. While she is on the femme side of butch, she is an extreme sports junkie, and she got very close to an astronaut named Nancy. She also once offered to teach Chad how to talk to girls. It's debatable, though, as when Chad said Marina was "the one" for him, Kelsey is clearly upset. She could just be feeling sorry for her friend, or...
    • Vida from Power Rangers Mystic Force, on the other hand, is very awfully butch for a ranger based on a butterfly (it was a fairy in Magiranger, by the way), was made into a Lesbian Vampire, and at the end of the series when said vampire was turned human noted loudly how hot she became.
    • On Power Rangers Ninja Steel, it's sometimes hinted that Monty (one of Those Two Guys) is attracted to Victor. He compliments Victor's appearance, thinks he's awesome, and acts like his personal Yes-Man even when Victor is being a bungling idiot (which is often). Monty even looks a bit like a teenage Smithers.
  • Pretty Little Liars:
    • Alison constantly flirts with Emily , the (then) closeted lesbian who was in love with Alison. It's unclear whether Ali was faking all of it, as Emily was something of a Morality Pet for Alison. Later in the series Alison admitted that she basically never loved anyone except Emily
    • Mona, who became A for the sole purpose of having Hanna all to her self. The show never explictly states whether or not this is in a romantic way, but Mona does seem very obsessed with Hanna.
  • A major factor in the Quantum Leap episode "Running for Honor". Sam leaps into a military school student who is being harassed because he might be gay. It's never determined if he really was gay or not, but Sam says it doesn't make a difference either way.
  • Revolution: There is a lot of Ho Yay between Miles and General Monroe. They could just be Heterosexual Life-Partners, but still....
  • Rules of Engagement: A recurring friend of Jeff is this in his first episode, and both women concluded he was gay, whilst both guys did not.
  • Saturday Night Live:
    • Parodied this with the "Lyle the Effeminate Heterosexual" sketches, in which the title character would lisp and mince and prance his way through the sketch — and then object loudly whenever somebody insinuated he was gay. Among those led astray by his mannerism were his wife and son.
    • Mango, played by Chris Kattan. Mango is a male exotic dancer who performs in a strip club. Though effeminate, Mango is adamant that he isn't homosexual, claiming that he stripped to support his wife and children. For what it's worth, one sketch showed his wife and children on screen. Of course there was also the West Side Story-cum-Grease parody involving him in high school, where one of his song lines was "Boobies give me the creeps." It seems to be whatever is funniest at the moment.
    • The Ambiguously Gay Duo originated as a animated sketch on SNL and, as such, are detailed further in Western Animation.
    • Seth Meyers on the Weekend Update segments with New York City correspondent Stefon (played by Bill Hader). Meyers always tries to rebuff Stefon's advances by saying he has a girlfriend, except for the last segment on the Season 38 episode hosted by Ben Affleck when Stefon breaks up with Seth and Seth stops Weekend Update to stop Stefon from marrying Anderson Cooper.
    • Stuart Smalley of the Daily Affirmation sketches in the early 90s, and later, his own movie, is known for being very effeminate, but his orientation is never flat out stated, but it is hinted that he's possibly gay, and any romantic partner mentioned usually has a Gender-Blender Name, such as Dale, Chris, or Merle. His father also once called him Liberace.
  • Schitt's Creek:
    • In the first half of the first season, flamboyant David Rose's sexuality goes unnamed but his manner often leans toward Camp Gay. This makes it surprising when he sleeps with female friend Stevie and then reveals his pansexuality by saying he likes the wine and not the label. He does, however, end up sexually and romantically involved with men in later seasons.
    • In Season 3, Patrick's sexuality is an open question for several episodes, with David presuming the business major who wears straight-legged, mid-range denim cannot be gay. Alexis and Stevie, on the other hand, notice that Patrick has a crush on David and encourage a romance. They turn out to be right.
    • The Roses, especially Moira, presume that butch and snarky town counselor Ronnie Lee is a lesbian, but it takes a while for that to be confirmed onscreen. Moira even assumes that the key demographic that Ronnie is throwing a party for is the LGBT community, but it turns out to be local businesswomen.
  • Scrubs: The Todd began as a hyper-straight chauvinist pig. Later episodes heavily implied he was either a repressed or overcompensating homosexual. Then the hints were that he was a full-blown omnisexual unconcerned with any orientation, until one episode explicitly stated it.
    After the Todd appreciates half a dozen widely varying people in as many seconds...
    Janitor: What are you?
    The Todd: I'm The Todd
  • This issue has, of course, come up among critics of Sesame Street a lot (of all places) regarding Bert and Ernie. In fact, in recent years, when more gay celebrities have been willing to come forward as such, many LGBT rights leaders petitioned PBS to finally come clean about it. PBS made a public reply in the negative: Bert and Ernie are just close friends.
  • Spaced:
    • Brian Topp, who when questioned as to whether he's gay or not replies in the negative, but in a thoughtful tone of voice that suggests that if he's not gay, then he thinks he should be. Many episodes deal with his love-slash-lust for one of the female characters, but one episode also deals with the return of his platonic-love heterosexual ex-life partner.
    • Played up in several episodes, such as the one in which he "comes out" as an artist to his mother, who had been under the impression he was a lawyer because he thought his parents would disapprove of art. Her cheerful response - "Don't be silly, your father and I don't mind what you do, as long as you're not gay!"
  • Spin City: One episode featured the Mayor's nephew, who was basically a walking Camp Gay stereotype that loudly and obnoxiously hit on women at every opportunity, worked as a "closet organiser" and said the word "closet" roughly every three lines. Subverted at the end when he confides to Carter (the local token gay) that he was in fact 100% straight, but adopted an elaborate deception to create ambiguity as to his sexual orientation, because his parents desperately wanted to set him up with a partner (of either gender), and he preferred being alone.
  • The Spy: Ma'azi seems to have a crush on Eli Cohen, but it's never confirmed whether he's a closeted gay man, bisexual or simply infatuated with Cohen. His gaze lingers on Cohen's naked body, and he repeatedly asks about Cohen's sex life, even sending him a prostitute to see if he'll have sex with her. Cohen seems to understand Ma'azi's interest and brusquely turns him away without acknowledging it. However, in another scene, Ma'azi seems to be enjoying making out with a woman.
  • Stargate Atlantis has a strange case - one of the writers has stated that he sees one of the recurring characters as being gay, but we don't know who he is. The leading theory among fans is that it's Major Evan Lorne, Sheppard's second in command who has no canon love interests.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Garak, to the point where nervous executives shoehorned him into a relationship with Ziyal. The actor later on that he played Garak as omnisexual and was attracted to (male) lunch partner Julian Bashir, but with the understanding that Bashir never recognized it.
  • Star Trek: Picard:
    • In "Stardust City Rag", the exact nature of Seven of Nine's relationship with Bjayzl is not spelled out; they were close enough to be on a First-Name Basis and there's clearly a deep level of personal bitterness in their confrontation. Seven in turn refers to herself as The One That Got Away (ostensibly referring to how she slipped out of Bjayzl's fingers despite her priceless Borg tech).
      Bjayzl: I take it you had no awareness of Annika and my close, personal relationsh—
      Seven: (shoving her down on the table) Shut up!
      • Along with Word of God, the final scene of "Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2" makes this a lot less ambiguous. Following a romantic kiss between Ríos and Jurati, Seven and Raffi interlace their fingers below deck, with romantic implications.
    • Hugh is the only male character who remarks that another man (Narek in this case) is good-looking ("dashing young Romulan spy"), his Cuddle Bug behaviour is limited to men, and Jonathan Del Arco had imbued his performance with Homoerotic Subtext between Hugh and Elnor.
  • Stranger Things: Will Byers is singled out by bullies as "the gay one" of the main kids, doesn't show any interest in girls, and his relationship with his friend Mike has strong parallels to Mike's relationship with his own Love Interest, Eleven. A few ambiguously canonical sources (an episode script and an old show bible) heavily suggest that Will is gay and has a crush on Mike. In Season 3, Will's interests start to diverge from those of his girl-obsessed friends. Mike outright accuses Will of not liking girls, which Will neither confirms nor denies. It's not clear whether Will is just a later bloomer or is, in fact, hiding his homosexuality.
  • Supergirl (2015): Alex Danvers was suspected by many fans to be gay as early as the Pilot. Though a male character expressed interest in her in the first season, she never returned that interest. While she had good reasons not to be into that character, she lacked any significant love interests in her backstory. She mentions having dated men in college, but she doesn't seem to have actually liked any of them. When DCTV revealed that a character on either Supergirl or The Flash (2014) would be coming out in the upcoming season, Alex was an immediate suspect. As of Crossfire Alex's sexual orientation is no longer ambiguous.
  • Tales from the Crypt: The mannerisms and speech of Beaks, the assistant of insane stage director Nelson Halliwell from the episode "Top Billing", just scream "gay". Of course, it could also be because he's insane as well.
  • Ted Lasso: Colin Hughes. When Keeley tells the team to sign up for a new dating app she's promoting called Bantr, Colin blurts out that the spelling is like Grindr, a gay hookup app.
  • Teletubbies: Tinky Winky carries a handbag, has a triangle on his head and is purple. He even wore a skirt in one episode. Parodied in The Simpsons when Homer dresses as one.
    I'm Homie Womie, the Teletubbie. And I'm all man in case you heard otherwise.
  • That's Just Me: Monica always pretends to be straight and says she's both bisexual and asexual, although her more masculine traits says something else....
    • Elizabeth's ex-boyfriend Steven loves pink and yellow and girly shows to the point of almost everyone questioning his true sexuality. Even Elizabeth makes fun of him for it.
    • Also, he tricked Elizabeth for a long time by pretending to be a woman named Stephanie....
    • Most girls on this show are super close. Bridget and Joanna have a fake marriage with Anika, Monica is the submissive worker of Hannia, Bridge, Anika, and Tsering, and Lela says some weird things to Joanna...
    • Most notably was in We're Moving?! But We'll Need a Truck was when she hugged Joanna from behind and asked if she wanted a massage.
  • Trailer Park Boys: It is heavily implied throughout the series that Julian is gay, his type being musclemen. in the "Out of the Park: Europe" season the last half of the Helsinki episode covers it almost nonstop!.
  • Ugly Betty:
    • Justin and Luigi Lombardi from the Mexican version La Fea Mas Bella; the Italian name is because Camp Gays in Mexico are usually given these kind of names. Interestingly, Mario Lombardi from the original Colombian version was more open but nothing near to flamboyant, having comparatively few mannerisms while talking about his boyfriends and male lovers quite openly; it seems that, in his case, calling him "gay" openly was a bit redundant. And Justin has the unique distinction of being, at most, thirteen years old.
    • When the show premiered, the actor playing Justin was just 11, and his Ambiguously Gay characteristics were just a running gag. Once he got to high school age, the show starting fleshing it out more, with Marc, an openly gay character, becoming something of a mentor for him. After several arcs that never used the word "gay" but always heavily implied it, Justin was the first to speak openly about the issue by flat out denying it. However, when he and another boy started fighting over a girl, it became clear that they were actually more interested in each other, with their tension finally culminating in a kiss which finally brought him out of the "ambiguous" category.
  • Victorious:
    • Main character Tori is popularly thought to be this or Ambiguously Bi, with those comparing the more bromantic way she acts around boys (despite a few minor one-episode boyfriends) to her often flirty interactions with her female friends, guest stars and background characters and deducing it as a case of Hide Your Lesbians, not entirely implausible for this being on the for-kids network Nickelodeon. Subverted during Season 4/3.5, as perhaps some executive or creator meddling gave her a noticeably contrasting Girly Girl makeover and many boy-centric songs to sing, though she still has a ton of Les Yay moments as well.
    • Robbie was definitely thought to be this early on, though as the series progressed and the popular beta ship with Cat got more heavy teasing, it turned more towards Ambiguously Bi.
  • Wizards of Waverly Place: Fans who don't think Alex is in love with Justin or Mason tend to think this of her, based on how she acts around other girls. Particularly with Stevie, who is less ambiguous.
  • Yellowstone: Beth accuses Jamie of being a closeted gay man and tells him that their father will love him less when he finds out. Jamie counters that he's not gay, only celibate because the world is too cruel to risk fathering a child. This comes across as a weak excuse, and Beth continues to make the same accusation in a few later episodes. When Christina virtually throws herself at him, Jamie seems uncomfortable and perplexed, but does get into a physical relationship with her and eventually impregnates her. Either Beth's accusations are just insults and Jamie is genuinely attracted to Christina, or he's only yielding to her advances to maintain his charade.
  • The Young Ones: Some fans view Rick this way as he's never been with a woman neither have the others but that's another story, has a very effeminate personality (along with feminine articles of clothing and purses), reads women's magazines, has a small obsession over one of his male teachers (along with Cliff Richards), gets personally offended over homophobia, and is a closeted cross-dresser.


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