This is so nutty we are actually kind not completely convinced that it’s real: a woman in the audience of the play Deathtrap was so outraged by a gay kiss that she wrote an insane angry email to the theater. Then the Pioneer Theater Company in Salt Lake City responded brilliantly.
Click through to read the lady's insane email and the theater company's "brilliant" response.
But it's a little hard to view this SLC-based theater company as somehow striking a blow for gay visibility or gay equality by mounting a production of Ira Levin's 1978 Broadway hit Deathtrap. The play that set this woman off—she's a mom who took her impressionable son to the theater where they were ambushed by two men kissing!—is about a Broadway playwright (spoilers ahead!) who murders his wife with the help of his much, much younger boyfriend. Once the playwright's wife is out the way, the closeted gay playwright and his murderous boytoy turn on each other. So the message this Utah mom's son got was this: Homosexuals are treacherous deviants! Their sick love is evil and destructive! And some gay men marry women and while that can kill a woman's soul and self-esteem—and marrying women is exactly what religious conservatives urge gay men to do—gay men who actually murder their wives are going too far!
Deathtrap is a great play, a totally engrossing little thriller. (And with one set and five characters, it's relatively inexpensive to produce.) But it's definitely a product its time—a time when all representations of gay love, gay people, and gay sex in film, on stage, and on television ended in murder or suicide or both. I'm not saying that Deathtrap shouldn't be performed today. Modern productions of Deathtrap are a lot less problematic as there are more varied and diverse representations of gay people, gay relationships, gay boytoys, etc., on stages, screens, and television. And, hey, some gay people are murderous shitbags.
But if I were a homophobic parent... like that outraged lady in Utah... Deathtrap is the only representation of gay men that I would ever want my teenage son to see.