I wrote last month about the need to see a much wider range of love stories between same-sex couples in our culture, moving away from relationships that are marked by tragedy because of the sexual orientation of the participants, and towards stories that can be purely happy, or tragic because of other factors, or the basis for heroics unrelated to the relationships. We’re in the early stages of some television shows that do that, like The L.A. Complex and Lost Girl. And now we have a music video that advances that narrative, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s gorgeous cradle-to-the-grave short film for “Same Love”:
Part of what’s fascinating and politically effective about the video is that the images are much more subtle than the lyrics themselves, which are a blunt call for equality. The couple in the film confront implied homophobia from their teenaged peers, from a couple on the street, but they also get to experience normal milestones, from teenaged fights with their parents, to public kisses, to introducing each other to their families, to an anxious proposal, to a joyous wedding. Homophobia, both internalized and external, is a factor in their relationship, but it’s far from the sum of it, and it doesn’t consume them and end in a cliche spasm of violence, as was the case for Murs’ “Animal Style” video. They just get to live, and love, and we can focus on the beauty and tremulousness and steadfastness of their relationship, above all else.