Welcome to The Queue — your daily distraction of curated video content sourced from across the web. Today, we’ve got a video about the difference between queer coding and queerbaiting.
Look, it says it right there at the top of the page: we are film school rejects. Academic theory can feel obtuse and inaccessible. Luckily, the internet is full of talented creators who excel at untangling tricky terminology and empowering folks to feel more informed about the content they consume.
I’d heard the terms “queer coding” and “queerbaiting” before. But I would have struggled if you asked me to explain the difference between the two. So, what’s the difference between queer coding and queerbaiting? And, more to the point, what can that difference teach us about the history of queer representation and the censorship of queer stories?
The feature-length video essay below answers these questions and then some. It is, effectively, a free documentary about how the subtle queer nods of the Pre-Code era evolved into a troubling modern pattern of media that draws in queer audiences without committing to queer storylines. This is an exceptionally structured video essay. And, as a result, it’s length never feels rambling or indulgent. For anyone curious about the terms, their origins, and their modern iterations, this video has you covered.
You can watch “Unrequited: A History of Queer Baiting” here:
Who made this?
More Videos Like This
- If you watched the entire hour and a half video above and you want to see more of Somerton’s work, we’d recommend this hour-long look at LGBTQ representation in horror films
- Another explanation of what is (and isn’t) queerbaiting
- Here’s a clip from Thou Shalt Not: Sex, Sin, and Censorship in Pre-Code Hollywood about queer representation in pre-code Hollywood
- Filmmaker IQ has an informative video about the history of censorship in Hollywood: from silent-era scandals to the turn in the 1960s, from censorship to classification
- Here’s Renegade Cut applying a queer theory to ’80s and ’90s action movies
- A video on the pronounced amount of queerbaiting in animation
- Here’s a video from Vox about the Catholic Church’s involvement in the Hays Code
Lindsay Ellis has a marvelously entertaining video on the queer under/overtones of Michael Bay’s filmography