The Bi Life wins praise for bi representation and breaking down stigma
E!’s ground-breaking The Bi Life has won praise from social media critics for representing the bisexual community—and helping to break down stigma.
Hosted by Shane Jenek and his drag persona Courtney Act, The Bi Life follows a group of “sexy singletons” as they live, party and date in a villa in Barcelona.
“Visibility is the most important thing for the forward movement of LGBT people in society,” one Twitter user wrote. “I commend @EOnlineUK and @courtneyact on you’re new show #TheBiLife for providing that .”
The first episode saw Michael, a professional swimmer for Jamaica, go on his first-ever date with primary school teacher Ben—although the sportsman told PinkNews that there was no “sexual chemistry” between the pair.
Sanjay Sood-Smith, director of empowerment programmes, wrote: “So #TheBiLife is a lovely entertaining blend of First Dates, Love Island, Celebs Go Dating, Gogglebox and The Real World whilst also educating people on Bi/Queer identities and breaking down stereotypes and stigma. I am HERE. FOR. IT. ”
The episode showed the girls discussing coming out and the biphobia they have faced.
Leonnie explained how she was recently discriminated against by a gay guy, who told her she was “greedy” for being bisexual, adding that she had responded: “You need to educate yourself.”
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She added that she had been afraid to come out to her mum and sister, saying: “I was really worried about her because I wouldn’t want her to get bullied at school because I’m with a girl…it’s not nice.”
Daisee said that her younger brother was bullied at school when she came out as bisexual.
“It broke my heart. I couldn’t do anything,” she said.
Speaking to PinkNews after the show, Daisie says: “I didn’t actually realise how much it was affecting my little brother. He didn’t tell anybody. So, I found it really, really hard when I did find out. It needs to be known that people do get bullied at school, and nothing gets done about it… I felt maybe a little bit ashamed about being bisexual because of the affect it was having on him.”
The topic discussed on the show clearly resonated with the audience. One Twitter user posted after the show: “Love it so much! as a bisexual person is almost unbelievable to see such representation on a tv show, I wanna go tell my younger, closeted (and kinda scared) self about it.”