Dylan O’Brien Accused of Stealing Queer Role In ‘Weird City’! I’m So Tired!

Weird City trailer Dylan O'Brien

The early reviews for Jordan Peele’s Weird City are in and it has been confirmed (as shown in the trailer) actor Dylan O’Brien is playing a queer character on the show. Of course, certain people have an issue with such a casting choice.

If you are someone who has been part of the Teen Wolf fandom and know about the hate Dylan O’Brien gets for playing Stiles, the most popular character from the show, the current uproar over his casting in Weird City shouldn’t be much of a surprise.

I would have ignored the issue if it didn’t include the very real problem Hollywood has of casting straight actors in queer roles. It is something I take quite seriously and that is why I decided to write this opinion piece.

Do I think queer actors should play queer roles? Yes!

Queer actors, who are publicly out, don’t get the same opportunities as straight actors do even when they are auditioning for queer roles.

Do I think every queer role should go to a queer actor? No.

I’m someone who looks at the project as a whole. For example, Disney’s upcoming Jungle Cruise will have a queer character. Now, that is a role which should have gone to a publicly out actor to move the needle in a positive manner as far as LGBTQIA+ representation on the big screen is concerned.

As for Weird City, Dylan O’Brien playing a queer character is okay in my book.

Why?

Well, because his role is only for a single episode. Also, have you looked at the entire cast for Weird City? There is a good amount of diversity and inclusion going around. So, it isn’t as if O’Brien stole something.

I can see how some of the backlash against O’Brien’s casting has to do with Tyler Posey fans. It is as if Posey can’t seem to get away from O’Brien’s shadow. Stiles is the most popular character in Teen Wolf even though the show was about Posey’s Scott. And now, even when the two actors have booked gay roles, it still seems O’Brien is the one being talked about the most.

I would have gone after O’Brien if he was cast as a queer character in a project without any openly queer talent around him. But the point is O’Brien’s role in Weird City is different.

However, Posey and Avan Jogia (both straight actors) being cast as queer characters in Now Apocalypse and the upcoming show having no openly queer talent in the cast (as far as I can tell) is problematic.

Anyway, I have said what I wanted to say. O’Brien is blameless in my opinion for playing Stu Maxsome in Weird City.

Weird City will premiere on YouTube Premium on February 13, 2019.

Feel free to share your thoughts with us.

Author: Farid-ul-Haq

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.


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About the author

Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.

Comments

  1. Has Dylan ever stated his sexuality publically? Asking because in the context of this article, Posey has stated his heterosexuality. So that does also add another element into why these cases are different.

    1. Dylan hasn’t stated his sexuality publicly. And yes, that does add another element to the current case. But still, I didn’t want to go too much into likely assumptions. And while unfortunate, unless an actor publicly comes out as queer, the default is to think of them as straight. That’s why I mentioned how openly queer actors should be given opportunities to be considered and cast in queer roles.

  2. ” know about the hate Dylan O’Brien gets for playing Stiles, the most popular character from the show” Lol. That’s simply not true. He doesn’t get much hate at all. And we know that you are an avid Dylan stan and Posey hater. So of course you felt the need to write an article about perfect Dylan and his perfect LGBT role comparing it to evil Posey and his bad LGBT role. Try at least to be a bit more subtle next time.

    1. If your experience is he doesn’t get much hate at all, then good for you. As I stated due to this being an opinion piece, I wrote from my truth and what I have seen over the years against Dylan in the Teen Wolf fandom and even after Teen Wolf ended. As for me being a Dylan stan? I don’t think I am. If he was cast in a major queer role without any other openly queer talent around him in front of the camera, I would drag him. As for Posey, I leave him be, too, but I think you too (hopefully) should see how problematic him playing a queer character is in Now Apocalypse which has another straight actor in another queer role as well, without any openly queer talent present in the entire cast.

  3. Straight actors are always going to get heat for playing gay roles. The problem with you attributing that solely on Posey stans just proves you’re biased and a hypocrite. Regardless if one or two Posey stans complain about Dylan playing queer, it was going to happen regardless. You didn’t have to make this about Posey but you couldn’t help yourself because that’s what gets you more views. Try better next time.

    1. Due to this being an opinion piece, I decided to make this article about Dylan and Posey because of the history they (and their fans share), and how both of them will next be seen in queer roles and how both cases are different, and Posey’s role in Now Apocalypse being problematic. Talking about one without mentioning the other wouldn’t have offered a good context.

  4. First off, O’Brien does not get a past because of diversity. The creator of Now Apocolypse is a gay man telling a story that includes queer charachters. So It makes no sense to say O’Brien is okay because they have a diverse cast and say Posey isn’t because that show doesn’t (something you have zero knowledge of) If you feel Posey is guilty then O’Brien is equally so.

    1. If your opinion is O’Brien doesn’t get a pass due to the diversity in Weird City, then yes, you continue thinking that. And if you don’t think it is problematic for the creator of Now Apocalypse casting two straight actors for two queer roles without any other openly out actor in the casting list, then you have the right to continue thinking that, too.

      As for Dylan’s role being equally as bad as Posey’s, I don’t think that. However, again, you can if you want to. No big deal.

      1. How do you know there won’t be any other queer actors? Diversity isn’t only important in front no matter what Matt Damon tells you. A LGBTQ man telling LGBTQ stories is just as valid as queer actors telling those stories. O’brien is not an openly LGBTQ actor and looking at your posts I don’t see an article about O’Brien’s other queer role on New Girl where the character’s queerness was a punchline for laughs. Also a show with no openly queen actors. You have a dislike for Posey over Sterek. You’ve proven that. Stop conflating actual LGBTQ issues and downplaying LGBTQ rep for moc while uplifting white LGBTQ simply because it’s what you prefer to see.

  5. A role should never be defined by gender or sexuality as long as they got the required skills that should be sufficient.

    Acting is about skills and never about our sexuality.

    1. That’s an amazing thought to have. Here’s to hoping Hollywood follows suit and allows skilled openly out talent to even audition for certain roles… James Bond, leads in potential tentpole blockbusters, and more… instead of blacklisting them due to their sexuality.

  6. I’m sorry did I miss Ed O’Neill leaving his wife if 30+ years and coming out? No? Then miss me with any fake outrage about Dylan O’brien taking a role where he MIGHT be playing gay character. We don’t even actually know yet. Both O’Brien and O’Neill are lgbtq allies and I would be shocked if either signed on for a role that disrespected members of the community. Also, you might wanna check the casting for the rest of the series if you think they weren’t hiring lgbtq actors. ::eye roll::

    Also, let’s consider the legit fact that it’s really fucking wrong/gross to demand every actor publicly come out with their sexuality in order to play a role that isn’t straight. Everyone should be allowed to do that at their own chosen time.

  7. I don’t see this as an issue – the only issue I have is people making such a big deal out of this. Straight people playing gay – so what???? They are playing a role – an actors job. They have the skills for the part and they are portraying a character that many gay teens out their need. Seeing them as a role model.
    Dylan O’Brien is a fine actor and a positive role model for teens and I feel that him playing a gay character is a positive thing as he is smart and I know he will portray it in a true way. And I am a fan of his and I see no problem him portraying a gay character – he obviously has what the producers/creator wants for the part.

  8. Was this brought on by one or two tweets or a Tumblr post? The tendency to turn a few comments into internet-wide outrage is so tiring. As is the “Tyler Posey is in Dylan’s shadow” nonsense. Tyler and Dylan are both making strides in their careers doing exactly what they want to do. This competition exists in the heads of a few fandom nerds.

    Of course you give Dylan a pass but don’t offer any concrete details beyond the “diverse” casting of Weird City. What’s different? Not much other than how you feel about each actor. And I guess two men of color being paired together isn’t diverse enough, but two white actors being paired together is, because the rest of project has a “diverse” cast. It seems this was written to take jabs at Posey (being in Dylan’s shadow, Stiles being the most popular character) which is fine but attempting to cast your distaste as anything other than “I hate Tyler Posey” is disingenous.

  9. This doesn’t make sense. There are multiple actors and actresses that are GAY or HOMOSEXUAL who play STRAIGHT characters and no one complains. I’m not saying that the LGBTQ community aren’t at a disadvantage when it comes to getting roles because they are. But if you’re gonna call out Dylan O’ Brien out for this then you got to be fair and look at both sides. In addition, 9 times out of 10, when there is a gay character, it’s played by a gay actor.

  10. Dylan has never made it clear what his sexuality is. He is also an ally to the community. As someone is is lgbt I think him playing a gay character is okay as long as he isn’t disrespectful. Also, it isn’t stealing if there wasn’t a gay person who also audition for the role.

  11. this article makes no sense. So i don’t personally think casting dylan was a bad thing but if we’re going with that then: Why should dylan get a pass just because there’s other diversity and you never mentioned if this was represented by other queer actors. A queer person and a person of colour is different types of representation.
    You do know that posey being cast in a queer role along with another poc is diversity right?

    Also as someone who used to be a teen wolf fan and is a big dylan and posey fan,there was never hate for dylan and stiles lmao.Sure people voiced their opinion that scott, even though the main character,was sidelined in the show by stiles but that’s just constructive criticism and taking a good look at covert racism. And posey being in dylan’s shadow???? they’re both doing different projects now and part of posey’s is his music so you really can’t compare.

  12. Hi, I think this was good article and I want to thank you for writing it and being polite to people who don’t share your opinions. It’s rare.
    And yes, Dylan gets lot of hate for being more talented then Posey and just generally being a nicer person then him.
    But it’s not like someone just says “I hate him. He is dumb.” People usually don’t like to be called assholes.
    So they say something that will make them look superior. Something like this: “You don’t like Scott because he is Latnix! Of course you would like white side kick. You are racist!” or “You can’t compare this two actors! They are playing completely different roles. Are you stupid or what?” and that’s just a tip of an iceberg.
    I could go on about what’s wrong with this sentences, but I think everyone with at least one braincell can see it.
    So again thank you for writing this article and I hope you will get more positive comments.
    And sorry for my mistakes. I’m not English native.

  13. As gay teen I think he did a good job. Im just happy to see representation on screen. Im not on anyone’s side but I think it’s important to take into account that he was willing to take the role and that the directors we able to represent a gay couple without making it so sexual. Also we could take into that one, there are probably not a lot of actors that are openly gay. that should not matter if they are straight or gay ,what matters is how they are representing the Lgbtq+ community. Not a lot of actors are willing to play a gay Chartres to whatever reasons. I think the characters and story was written in cute and funny way. Also im a huge fan of dylan and tyler and the fact they are both tock queer role means a lot to me.

  14. Ed O’Neil is also playing a lgbtq role in that same exact episode, he is literally the other person in the relationship yet was never mentioned? why was this only targeted towards dylan? Anyways, Dylan did a great job acting and he is an ally so I am not upset. I think people should watch the show and look past the actors to see the message they are trying to send.

  15. I don’t get this, isn’t playing a gay/bi character just another sample of acting?! Like I get white washing, especially when a character is meant to be a different race and yet still somehow they get a white actor. But sexuality? That has nothing to do with physical looks. A straight actor should be able to play a gay character, just as a gay actor can play a straight character. By saying that a gay actor should play a gay character, you’re basically saying that they are not aloud to play straight characters, which doesn’t make much sense to me. Take Neil Patric for example, his gay yet he was fantastic at playing a straight Barney in How I met your Mother, a straight guy. I honesly don’t get why it should matter if the actor is straight or not playing a straight or not character. Thats the whole point of acting, pretending to be someone your not.

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