It’s true that the advertising for Bros makes it look like a simple homosexual comedy, but there’s actually a lot more to the film than meets the eye.
It’s true that Bros has already been billed as a homosexual romantic comedy, but it’s also much more than that. Bros. made history before it was even released as it was the first LGBTQ+ love story from such a major studio. To have a cast member that is almost exclusively LGBTQ+ itself is a major deal, and it shows that the movie is devoted to doing more than just showcasing LGBTQ+ romance.
Bros seem to be a narrative of Bobby (Billy Eichner) & Aaron (Luke Macfarlane) steadily falling in love. They both begin their narratives as gay men who have settled into a life of singlehood and occasional sexual encounters. Yet by the film’s conclusion, in classic romantic comedy fashion, they’ve decided to give a relationship a shot (at least for a while).
Critics have lauded Bros for venturing into uncharted territory, but they have also pointed out that it doesn’t feel wholly original. However, it works to the film’s advantage because Bros is a romantic comedy that doesn’t stray too far from the conventions of the genre; the storylines that unfold beyond Bobby and Aaron’s provide much of the film’s emotional resonance. I’ll explain why Bros isn’t just a trailblazing LGBTQ+ romcom.
This is why we can say with confidence that it doesn’t matter if you label Bros “just a rom-com.”
Mainstream media representations of the LGBTQ+ community have, for the most part, taken the form of dramas, documentaries, and biopics. According to Bros, cishet performers playing gay characters in films have often focused on tragedy. Bobby points out that the film Bohemian Rhapsody centered on the one occasion Freddie Mercury had a connection with a woman, even while depicting the story of a gay legend like Mercury.
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Since the controversy over 2015’s The Danish Girl, there has been a significant change in LGBTQ+ media toward casting transgender performers more frequently. While not flawless, Hulu’s Happiest Season, the first gay holiday romcom, made headlines in 2020. Bros may be “simply a rom-com” with gay protagonists, and if so, that’s terrific because the LGBTQ community deserves to have its fair share of cringe-worthy romcoms.