Colton Underwood docu-series ridiculed for bizarre Marsha P Johnson comparison: ‘What fresh hell?’
The Colton Underwood Netflix docu-series has been ridiculed online for appearing to compare the gay ex-NFL player to Stonewall legend Marsha P Johnson.
In April, Underwood, a former football player and the virginal leading man of The Bachelor, came out as gay in an emotional Good Morning America interview.
Coming Out Colton, a six-episode docu-series which started filming before Underwood’s GMA appearance, debuted on the streaming giant on 3 December.
It sees Colton Underwood get a crash course in queer history – with one scene filmed at the Stonewall Inn – as well as come out to his family members and friends, all on camera.
For Underwood, the series was meant to help those who, he told The New York Times, “didn’t understand” his decision to share his truth and the impact it had.
Reflecting on his journey of self-discovery, Colton Underwood said all he can do is “share my story and hope that it helps” before acknowledging the role of the trailblazing activists who came before him.
The episode ends with a montage of various mock newspaper cuttings of a handful of iconic moments in queer history. From the raiding of the Stonewall Inn and the riots and marches it electrified to the Pulse nightclub shooting.
It also pays tribute to LGBT+ figures throughout history, such as Christine Jorgenson, among the first in the US to undergo gender-affirmation surgery, Edith Windsor, whose landmark Supreme Court case led to national marriage equality and Harvey Milk, the first openly gay elected official in the US.
Among other forerunners is Marsha P Johnson, the Black trans pioneer who co-founded the queer homeless collective Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries. Her photograph is paired with a fictional headline that reads: “Change is Coming.”
Viewers, however, took to social media to mock the montage scene, seemingly taken aback at the notion that Underwood’s story could be placed alongside pivotal points in LGBT+ history such as the Stonewall uprising.
It's going to take me months to process that the end of the Colton Underwood docuseries ends with him saying his story is only the most recent one to be told… before breaking into a montage featuring Marsha P Johnson, Harvey Milk, and Matthew Shepard.
— Justin Kirkland (@justinkirkland4) December 2, 2021
— alex (@alex_abads) December 2, 2021
can confirm!!!!!!!!!! i advocated not writing about it because i do not think it’s worth the effort 😌 https://t.co/JYDWWMLs0G
— David Oliver (@doliver8) December 2, 2021
Colton Underwood threw the first brick at Stonewall
— Please Please… Don't Quiz Me! (@PleaseDontQuiz) November 29, 2021
So I’m missing how Colton Underwood is connected to the legacy of Stonewall, Harvey Milk and Marsha P. Johnson.
— James Kicklighter (@jameskick) December 5, 2021
No words. Absolutely psychotic
— Ryan Aguirr-sleigh 🎄 (@aguirreryan) December 5, 2021
I’m going to become the (gay) Joker https://t.co/fvGasAS28E
— Josh Vetrano (@yoshthethird) December 5, 2021
“I know there are a lot of untold stories in the LGBTQ+ community and I’m grateful to be able to add my story to the conversation,” Colton Underwood said in the penultimate segment.
“To continue to push forward until stories like this, you know, don’t have to be told anymore.
“There’s been people before me who have helped me be able to sit in the chair right now and talk with you on a national platform.
“There’s going to be people after me that will continue to push and change people’s hearts and change people’s minds.”