as someone who was a closeted gay teen back during Pee Wee’s 80s heyday, i can attest to that Slate article’s spot-on assertion. it was definitely there, and it was a godsend to me.
Interesting, and thank you for sharing.
If anyone can watch the Pee Wee Xmas Special – the most wonderfully campy, gay thing he’s ever done – and think that the subtext is being imagined ‘for lulz’, they are nuts.
I’m 'way ahead of you
The apostrophe in “I’m” is fine. The apostrophe before “way” has no business being there. Why must Robin put things where they don’t belong?
I see that in a lot of older books, when “way ahead” was a shorter form of “away ahead”.
I’m willing to guess that’s both there and deliberate. Reubens developed the character as an offshoot of his comedy work in the 70’s, and the act was at first exclusively targeted at adults. He was originally intended as a hack comedian, and I remember hearing that Reubens spent a lot of time performing the early act in venues known for edgy comedy and drag shows. And often in traditionally Gay neighborhoods in NY and LA.
Ok I get it.
I spose for consistency’s sake, Robin could do the same thing to “ahead”, and say, “I’m way head”.
I now officially cannot stop thinking about whether the books were really about the dangers of sticking your finger into the ring of power.
The HBO PeeWee special did feature PeeWee trying to look at women’s panties and breasts, like, a bunch. If that makes sense of my skepticism of the Slate article.
Anyways, I don’t want to get too off topic because apparently that is verboten according to @milliefink.
Batman is not not gay but sure ins’t are not helping my arguments here… oh hell with it. I give up
Heck isn’t implying they are gay half the fun of reading the comics?
ETA it isn’t just batman and robin…
Oh, totally – Paul Rubens likes to have Pee Wee act like a naughty kid by trying to peek at girls, having multiple “girlfriends”, that kind of thing. There was a lot of that in the old HBO special. But then you’ve got sequences of Pee-Wee and Cowboy Curtis having a weenie roast at a campfire and talking about putting their weiners into buns. Pee-Wee’s campiness winked at everyone.
There are so many unjustified speculations of their gayness that I had to beat them off with a stick, lickety split!
That would be the TEXT, subtext is a different thing. Particularly if you’re talking about gay subtext you’re talking about subtle, indirect references to gayness or gay cultural references which are often hidden behind/beside overt demonstrations of heterosexuality. Besides the humor in all things Pee Wee is in large part built out of double entendre, goofy statements that “accidentally” mean something else (wink wink), actual sarcasm, exaggerated sarcasm. And generally a whole hell of a lot of shit that makes room for both oblique references to gay shit and straight shit. Without being internally inconsistent. Its kind of how the whole gag works.
What you describe violates every ethical norm surrounding the special relationship between guardian and ward.
I worked on the 1st season. It was totally there. People on set were cracked up by it. I mean, “Cowboy Curtis, what big feet you have!”. I was in my early 20’s and found Reubens terrifying.