Hocus Pocus 2 is happening – with a lesbian love story
A sequel to cult classic Hocus Pocus is in the works – and the plot reportedly includes a lesbian love story.
The Disney Channel movie is set to be released in the next few months, 25 years after the original film starring Sarah Jessica Parker, Bette Midler and Kathy Najimy.
It was reported last year that the film was being developed, but now Disney has released a novelised version of the sequel – complete with a queer teen romance.
Hocus Pocus 2, named Hocus Pocus & the all-new sequel, recounts the original plot – which sees Max, his sister Dani and Allison accidentally release three Salem, Massachusetts witches who are back and want to become immortal – before entering new territory.
In the sequel, which the new film is reportedly based on, Allison and Max are married and still living in Salem, but their 17-year-old daughter Poppy is mortified that her parents and aunt Dani are so superstitious about witches.
The only issue with this is that Isabella, a popular, beautiful black girl from Poppy’s school who she has a massive crush on, is fascinated with witches, and specifically with the Sanderson sisters, as reported by Autostraddle.
Since Max and Allison still keep a hexed candle in a safe in their attic, you can probably guess what happens next (it involves the wonderful line “The witch is back”) but the key part for us is the blossoming love story between Poppy and Isabella.
So here’s an excerpt, just for you.
Isabella gives me a smile that makes my stomach flip a little. “There’s no way I’d leave you hanging.”
“It’s not fair that you’re so nice.” I take another piece of pizza. “People aren’t supposed to be smart and popular and nice. What’s your weakness, Isabella Richards?”
Her smile flags a little, and for a second she looks mystified — but then it’s gone. “Halloween candy,” she says, matter-of-factly, then grins and takes another sip of soda.
Having a queer love story in a Disney-sanctioned book is good, but seeing a lesbian teen romance in a Disney film – even if will be limited to TV – is even better.
After all, Disney has been found lacking in terms of LGBT representation in films.
In fact, whenever the company has the chance to incorporate one of its many, many LGBT characters into a global blockbuster, it baulks at the opportunity.
This even means erasing scenes which reveal a queer character’s sexuality, as happened with Thor: Ragnarok‘s Valkyrie.
And fans of Black Panther will have seen the film’s lesbian couple rewritten as straight, their queerness completely erased.
When the film was announced, fans were excited by the prospect of Okoye and Ayo, two of the title character’s bodyguards, getting together as Ayo and fellow female warrior Aneka do in the comics.
And these hopes were encouraged by reports that an early screening of the film featured The Walking Dead star Danai Gurira’s Okoye staring at Ayo flirtatiously as the two danced.
The enthusiasm provoked by this turned to frustration and claims of LGBT erasure after Marvel quickly denied the conclusions drawn by those who watched the scene.