The latest episode of Boomerang gave us a look at what Bryson and Ari will likely continue to face as the current season progresses. ‘Reversal of a Dog’ really delivered on bisexual queer representation as well as how men dealing with their emotions (even if certain men don’t want to accept they have a whole lot of them) can be a complex process.
Where the previous episode shared Tia and David’s respective character arcs for Boomerang season 2, ‘Reversal of a Dog’ was all about Bryson (Tequan Richmond) and Ari (Leland B. Martin). This leaves Crystal and Simone. So, of course, I’m interested in knowing what those two women will be dealing with in upcoming episodes.
One of the things I liked about ‘Reversal of a Dog’ was the way it showcased how men address relationships in different ways. Bryson, from what we know, is someone who wants to be in a committed relationship with someone, while Ari is okay with keeping things casual (for now).
That’s why seeing Bryson hooking up with various women (when this season opened) made it clear it wasn’t going to end well for him. And from what he went through this week, it didn’t. Instead of facing his feelings for Simone, he tried to distract himself. Bryson’s inability to perform sexually is linked to Simone and I hope he works on his feelings in an effective manner.
Coming to Ari, he’s a bisexual PoC mess, but the right kind of mess that doesn’t support problematic (and harmful) queer stereotypes. Ari’s journey has been interesting to see since the first season of Boomerang. It took him a while to accept he liked men in a sexual way. So, you know he still has a lot in himself to improve.
Pick a position. Team Tops, Team Bottoms, and Team those still figuring it out! Now listen, we going there. “Don’t you ever get tired of being the man?” Tomorrow, #BoomerangOnBET tackles the nuances of toxic masculinity. 👑🐯
— Lena Waithe (@LenaWaithe) March 31, 2020
‘Reversal of a Dog’ showed him being called out for the way he handled his relationship when hooking up with another guy. I liked the conversation he had with his romantic interest. Turns out, Ari isn’t interested in being the receptive partner. He came up with certain excuses, but it was apparent he didn’t want to take up such a role because he wanted to be the “man” when he was with another dude.
Furthermore, the episode also had the two queer characters visit a homophobic fast-food joint because the chicken being served there was tasty. I don’t want to say any names, but I think most of you will know which particular fast-food establishment was being implied.
Here’s a clue! The name rhymes with Lick-A-Lay.
Anyway, even there Ari was clearly uncomfortable about appearing like the “woman” when he’s out with another man.
I think gender roles are something bisexual individuals do have to think about a lot (even if it’s to their detriment because frankly, we all know gender roles are overrated). For certain bisexual individuals, the way they act when dating a woman is different from the way they act with a male romantic partner. It’s weird and it can be confusing for some, especially when you add in societal expectations.
Even if a bisexual man is in a relationship with a woman, while it doesn’t take away from his bisexuality, the way said “heteronormative” coupling is perceived by society is going to be very different from how society will react toward the same bisexual man being in a relationship with another man. Now, I’m not bringing up the validity of bisexual relationships in homophobic countries because that’s a whole other topic.
I’m looking forward to seeing how Lena Waithe and her team will handle Ari’s character development.
Are you watching the second season of Boomerang yet? You should!
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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