The Outs – Gay Web Series – Review

the outs

Christian Watts

Christian is a soon-to-be design student at Goldsmiths, London. Originally from (near) Liverpool, he can usually be found with a camera or sketchbook. Works at art galleries pretending he knows what he's talking about. Follow on twitter @cjfwatts

Arguably my favourite gay drama on the web, The Outs follows the lives of an ex-couple, Jack and Mitch, through their arguments, reasons for splitting up and ultimately finding new love. Even though their relationship has ended before the start of the first episode, we are kindly given flashbacks to piece together the puzzle of their dramatic relationship. To be fair the characters are pretty much the stereotypes that I talked about in the first part, however, these characters are dealt with well, much better than in other shows.

What is interesting to note is the similarities between this show and for example, the story arcs of heterosexual relationships on mainstream TV.  The story is dealt with in a depth likened to longer shows, in a more concise way. More so than in other gay dramas that I have watched online, The Outs provide personalities to the characters. Mitchell, I have found, is more than the camp one in the relationship. His troubles with his straight best friend, and even his relationship with his ex give him a greater sense of morality.

The show does still play on the annoying aspects of how LGBT are represented in the media. The ‘straight’ one is an instantly hateable, seemingly now bisexual guy who oozes sexual magnetism. You know the ones, he’d walk into G-A-Y and a queue would form.  With a wider cast than you would expect for a gay web series however, in general characters are well thought out and unique.

My main opinion on The Outs is how annoyingly relatable it all is, to pretty much anyone. The exes go through a whirlwind of emotions together throughout the short series, culminating in a longer ‘Hanukkah Special’. They hate each other, they love each other, they tolerate each other and they’re friends, almost all at the same time.  Between all this they do find love again, something they highlight can happen while they continue to co-exist (so for all you folks out there, The Outs confirm there is more than one fish in the sea), alongside dealing with their own careers and lives. Dealing with relationships can be a difficult process for anyone, so it is nice to sit back and watch how two people do it: well and not so well. The characters are by no means perfect, and handle some of the situations they’ve been in pretty badly.

This in turn makes the show effectively real. For some people I can imagine the drunken mistakes, the sober mistakes and the drama will really hit home. Love is lost and gained in show, and it is nice to see a happy ending without any collateral damage. Well a bit, but it’s still nice to see everyone relatively happy.

Watch the first episode here:

The Outs: State of the Union from The Outs on Vimeo.

Next week will be In Between Men, an incredibly stylised drama with overly attractive men getting into awkward situations.

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