You have probably heard by now that Kevin Spacey has "a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor." Seriously, dude, back off. If there's anyone whose respect and admiration Rapp cares least about, it's probably yours. As we all learned last night from Buzzfeed:
Rapp is publicly alleging for the first time that in 1986, Spacey befriended Rapp while they both performed on Broadway shows, invited Rapp over to his apartment for a party, and, at the end of the night, picked Rapp up, placed him on his bed, and climbed on top of him, making a sexual advance. According to public records, Spacey was 26. Rapp was 14.
Spacey did not respond to Buzzfeed's request for comment, the Buzzfeed story initially said, but after it came out Spacey did take to Twitter to try to deflect attention from the alleged incident by, uh, coming out.
It was a move not intended to inspire "tens of thousands of struggling LGBTQ kids around the world," as openly gay actor Zachary Quinto pointed out on Twitter this morning, but a "calculated manipulation to deflect attention from the very serious accusation that he attempted to molest one."
Rumors about Spacey being gay have circulated for years. One of my coworkers went to acting school at a college in the Midwest just a couple years ago where it was the subject of regular gossip among gay students; when this colleague went to London to do a semester abroad, it was frequently whispered about among gay boys at Shakespeare's Globe.
Rapp says he came forward because he was inspired by the women who'd come forward with allegations about Harvey Weinstein.
As someone who's been inspired by Rapp since I was a little gay boy—well, 16—I got to work today, sat down at my computer, and watched a bunch of YouTube versions of Rapp singing "La Vie Boheme," a song I memorized every word to in high school. (Had no idea at the time that Rapp was gay.) The best version is the clip from the Christopher Columbus movie.
"La Vie Boheme" is the faux-funeral lament Rapp sings after a gentrifying developer announces the death of bohemia.
But that little ditty of an elegy could be applied to the death of anything. For example, Spacey's career. Netflix announced today they're "deeply troubled" by the allegations—which Spacey didn't deny—and that the sixth season of House of Cards will be its last. Meanwhile, Spacey's past career highlights are already being viewed in a new light.
Nope to Kevin Spacey's statement. Nope. There's no amount of drunk or closeted that excuses or explains away assaulting a 14-year-old child.
— Dan Savage (@fakedansavage) October 30, 2017
Kevin Spacey has just invented something that has never existed before: a bad time to come out.
— billy eichner (@billyeichner) October 30, 2017
My gay son & his friends fight stereotypes constantly - shame on you Kevin Spacey for linking assaulting a minor with coming out as gay.
— Sherri (@SociallySherri) October 30, 2017
But anyway, enough Spacey. Today is Anthony Rapp Appreciation Day. Want to watch him do the "Tango Maureen" while we're at it? Why not.
He's had a full career beyond Rent, too.