Welcome to COOL GAY STUFF ! It's a pin-board round-up of Internet snippets which provide a succinct foretaste of new gay-friendly media. This gay 'sampler' also offers pathways to purchase the highly-readable 500-page paperback or Kindle e-book copy from Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK of your host - - fiction-author George Gardiner's - - highly-regarded sensual novel of Ancient Rome titled THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History.

Cool Gay Stuff prioritizes readers & reading. It's a pointer to today's literary culture via brief excerpts from print articles, literary crits, movie crits, & online news etc, while also pointing you to material & sites of particular gay appeal. They're selected by your host, George Gardiner, author of "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA".

As a recently-published historical novel, THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is a highly-praised, erotically-charged, 'good read' Roman Era crime-thriller and sensual m/m romance. It is based on the real-life relationship of ancient Rome's dynamic emperor Hadrian ("... one of the five good emperors ...") with his handsome beau, Antinous of Bithynia, whose over-120 surviving ancient sculptures attest to his muscular good looks. Nevertheless, during an imperial tour of Rome's Mediterranean provinces in 130CE, Antinous drowned under questionable circumstances in Egypt's River Nile. This tragedy prompted an Imperial whodunit investigation whose (fictional) details have encouraged many readers of the paperback or Kindle e-book editions to endow this book a very favorable topmost 5-Star rating by more than half of its 25 Amazon online reviewers (56%, to be precise). This rating also adds the 24% of Amazon readers who awarded the novel 4-Stars. Combined, these figures deliver an Amazon purchaser's appreciation score of 4.1 points out of a possible ceiling of 5.

Cool Gay Stuff also provides direct links to Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK's book-sales sites for you to easily purchase a copy of the paperback (adding a modest delivery fee to the mail address of your choice). Alternatively, you may prefer to immediately download the thrifty Kindle e-book version of the same text? If so, click on the choice offered below. Please note :- the paperback edition of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is NOT available at other public book-stores ... its sole purchase option is online via Amazon-USA or Amazon-UK (direct links displayed below). A 500-page paperback copy will be mailed to your preferred postal address after credit-card payment via Amazon.

Then follows this month's regularly-updated Cool Gay Stuff snippet-sampler of notable GLBTQ articles, essays, news, videos, movie trailers & reviews, plus direct links to the original Net sources. Please note :- this site avoids displaying NSFW images or overt porn so as "not to frighten the horses" (Oscar Wilde's cheery 1890's advice). This site's formal Fair Dealing/Non-Profit copyright criteria are posted at its conclusion, plus a full catalog of The Hadrian Enigma's research resources. So, welcome everyone wherever you are!


.... and now for something subtle ...

Plot : Summer of 1983, Northern Italy. An American-Italian (Timothee Chalamet) is enamored by an American student (Arnie Hammer) who comes to study and live with his family. Together they share an unforgettable summer full of music, food, and romance that will forever change them.

Watch the official trailer for this Italian (English-language) romantic drama "Call Me by Your Name," starring Armie Hammer, Timothée Chalamet, Michael Stuhlbarg, Amira Casar, Esther Garrel, Victoire Du Bois, Vanda Capriolo, and Antonio Rimoldi. Directed by Luca Guadagnino.

The movie had its debut at the Sundance Film Festival (USA) in January, where it received rave reviews. It will play the Toronto Film Festival in August before it's release in the USA on November 24. The 2'10" trailer (above) tells it all in a very compact way ... (See too the related promotional story at : http://www.ontopmag.com/article/32702/Armie_Hammer_Timothee_Chalamet_On_Important_Gay_Drama_Call_Me_By_Your_Name

(Video trailers courtesy of YouTube, with many thanks.)


ONE OF THE EARLIEST RECORDED SAME-SEX ROMANCES OF HISTORY : Hadrian Caesar and his very-fit paramour Antinous of Bithynia, set amid the Roman Empire (circa 125-130CE) two centuries before Rome legalized Christian beliefs.

The two-line blue web-address (below) is an invitation from your host, author George Gardiner, to explore his 498-page romance/crime/historical erotica/m-m romance "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History" at Amazon USA.

Alternatively, a click on the actual book cover-pics (below) will also deliver you to Amazon (USA) to explore purchase details via its Amazon Online link :-

HADRIAN & ANTINOUS - recorded history's first real-life 'out' lovers ...

HADRIAN & ANTINOUS - recorded history's first real-life 'out' lovers ...
... back & front covers of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA. To reach Amazon book sales: CLICK ON THE PICS for direct link to its Amazon USA page to check reviews, prices, & airmail-purchase of a paperback or instant Kindle ebook download.

OPINIONS OF "THE HADRIAN ENIGMA" - genuine online quotes from 25 Amazon purchasers ...

"Five stars .. A wonderful insight into Roman life ... fantastic, well-researched ..."
Amazon Customer, USA (March 2017)

"Five stars ... a good read."
Viola Noll at Amazon USA

"Nobody will ever know what, exactly, happened to Antinoos. But this is IMHO the best yet story about what might have been. ...."
David Woodworth (USA) at Amazon's USA sales site

"Five stars ... This is a good & fast read."
Fr Mike Mangoian (USA) at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... I loved this book ... If you like mysteries, try this book. ... Lots of fun ... "
Eric Sootin, Asheville, NC (USA) at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... Excellent ... couldn't put the book down ... one of the most enjoyable novels I've ever read ..."
Lloyd F Adams (USA), at Amazon USA

"Five Stars ... The best book I've read on Hadrian and Antinous."
JANE (Canada), at Amazon USA

"I recommend it to any historical fiction fan, especially any fan of the redoubtable Mary Renault. ..."
J.R. Tomlin, author of historical fiction, at :- http://jeannetomlin.blogspot.com/

"Five stars ... a tour de force ..."
Elisa Rolle, Amazon Top 1000 Reviewer, USA & UK, & at : http://elisa-rolle.livejournal.com/1092070.html

" ... an absorbing new book ... compelling writing ... action sequences that are brilliantly staged & paced ... on a higher plane than mere homoerotic titillation ... courageous & convincing ..."
Reader Down Under (Australia), at Amazon USA

"... extensively researched picture of life in the Roman Empire ... a mix of mystery, comedy, gay & straight romance - is an entertaining read ..."
Laura Staley, Historical Novels Review, USA, at :-

"... an age-old love story with a twist ... an unexpected delight ... his storyline hooked me immediately ..."
Olivera Baumgartner-Jackson of READER VIEWS, Austin TX, USA

"... You will feel engaged and challenged ..."
Nan Hawthorne, author Beloved Pilgrim, at Amazon USA

"... extremely readable ... it's a page turner ... Gardiner has written an interesting & gripping story ..."
Kim at http://www.desicritics.org/ India

"... Five Stars ... a compelling crime mystery ... a hard book to put down ..."
Terence Charters, Hobart, Australia, at Amazon USA

"... An adventure through Hadrian's world. The story is easy to read and full of the homoeroticism that we love about this era. ..."
P. Novotny, London, at Amazon UK

"... a definitive Five Star read for me ..."
Aleksandr Voinov, UK, reviewer at Speak Its Name

"Five Stars ... A masterful recreation of Ancient Rome ... the historical details are a delight ... characters are outlined in a vivid way which is like meeting old friends ... "
Ernest Gill, Hamburg, at Amazon USA & UK

"Five Stars ... as a reimagining of the Hadrian-Antinous relationship in the context of the age it is fascinating."
Muriel Perkins, Texas, at Amazon USA

" ... this is a novel about the nature of love ... but this is far from just being a gay romance. ..." Kit Moss, historical author, at :- http://kitmossreviews.blogspot.com.au/2013/02/the-hadrian-enigma-forbidden-history-by.html

"A truly exceptional book on 'What Greek Love" is all about ..."
John R. Shelton at Amazon USA

"Five Stars. I so enjoyed this book. Highly recommend it ... "
Stephen Forte, Birmingham, Alabama at Amazon USA

" ... I would recommend the book to anyone interested in the Hadrian/Antinous relationship"
Harrison Sheppard at Amazon USA

NOTE: Amazon USA's &
UK's online book & ebook purchase sites with their 25 independent reader's reviews (fourteen awarding Five Stars for excellence!) can be read in full by clicking on :- http://www.amazon.com/Hadrian-Enigma-Forbidden-History/product-reviews/0980746906/ref=sr_1_1_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1


LUST, LOVE, INTRIGUE, & MURDEROUS REVENGE: challenging suspense fiction suggested by real events in history's most unusual true love story ...

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA: A Forbidden History
A novel
(C) George Gardiner
ISBN13: 978-0-9807469-1-4 (at Amazon USA, UK, Europe, Australia etc) in 498-page paperback or Kindle ebook.
Also iBookstore, iPad, Nook & ePub ebook formats available via online sources. (Not available in street stores.)

The scene: ancient Rome, 130 years after Christ yet two centuries prior to Christianity being legal. Caesar Hadrian is the popular ruler of a vast pagan empire at the height of its power & wealth.

Hadrian, one of Rome's "five good emperors" searches for & eventually locates the love of his life .. Antinous, an elite Greek athlete, huntsman, & cavalry cadet. They become 'companions' under the ancient Greco-Roman mentoring tradition of an erastes (mentor) & his eromenos (student).

During an imperial pleasure tour of Egypt Antinous is discovered dead in the River Nile. Hadrian is distraught. Is the death a drunken prank gone wrong, suicide, murder, or something far more sinister? Hadrian assigns historian playboy Suetonius Tranquillus to investigate.

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA is the outlawed record of Caesar's investigation into one of history's most suspicious fatalities. It reveals more than Hadrian may want to know, or wants others to know. Set in a society increasingly reflecting facets of our own times, it portrays an era of torrid relationships, raging ambition, wealth inequalities, & uninhibited morals within a severely macho culture of honor, shame, pride & prejudice.

BUY ONLINE ONLY (not available in street stores). CLICK NOW ON A LINK BELOW to select or compare your preferred purchase & delivery options ...

For an Amazon-USA delivered (or air-freighted overseas) paperback :

for Amazon's Kindle ebook or Kindle-For-PC's download :

[If you buy a new print edition of THE HADRIAN ENIGMA, or have purchased one in the past, you can buy a Kindle ebook edition for only $1.99 - saving 80%. Print edition must have been sold by Amazon.]

for Amazon UK :

COOL GAY STUFF now introduces current news & opinion in both columns ...

With many thanks to the originating sources, this left-side column offers "
Mobile First" news excerpts ... a 'text-only' stream for mobile devices to identify & promote teaser-snippets of LGBTQ-news, relevant text selections, plus trailer details of likely gay-interest .... culminating in independent readers' reviews of

... meanwhile, the right-hand column (viewable only via full-frame PC's, laptops, & notebooks etc), displays pics, graphics, cinema trailers, or short videos relevant to the main column's subject .....


Monday, August 21, 2017


David Hockney Pops in Paris
----  the opening lines from a well-illustrated report on British artist David Hockney's newly-opened exhibition in Paris, published at the Huffington Post (USA), 20th August 2017 (with many thanks) :-

      'The Tate Britain in London, the Metropolitan Museum in New York City, and the Pompidou Center in Paris have collaborated on the most complete exhibition to date on the career of famed artist David Hockney.
      The global show is a celebration of Hockney’s 80-year’s birthday (born July 9, 1937). Over 160 works of art are represented with paintings, photographs, engravings, drawings, and video installations.
      The important retrospective of his original work comes nearly 20 years after his first Paris debut at the same Pompidou Center.
      The most iconic paintings of the artist are shown here, such as various California swimming pools views, double portraits or monumental landscapes, showing the entire artistic career of the painter, up to today.  .... '
----  see the entire report on this important contemporary artist at the HUFFPOST (USA) at :-

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


Love is in the air on India's first LGBT radio show
----  "better late than never?" ... the opening lines from a Thomas Reuters Foundation report at The Malay Mail Online (Malaya), August 15 2017 :-

      'MUMBAI, Aug 15 — Outspoken Indian gay rights activist Harish Iyer is used to fighting for equal rights but over the last month he has turned into a messenger of love.
      He is the host of “Gaydio”, the first radio show dedicated to lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) issues in India, where homosexuality is a taboo and gay sex can be punished with up to 10 years in jail.
      “As an activist, it is in my DNA to stand up for a cause,” Iyer, 38, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.
      “You hear heart-warming love stories during your activism, but you are busy being the saviour. But on this show, I look at the softer side.”
India’s penal code bans “sex against the order of nature”, which is widely interpreted as homosexual sex .... '
----  see more of this Malay Mail  syndicated report, thanks to the Thomas Reuters Foundation at :- 

Monday, August 14, 2017

BBC America to show "QUEERS" ...

BBC AMERICA to Show Mark Gatiss' Gay Britannia Series 'QUEERS'
----  the initial pars of a publicity announcement by Stewart Clarke, a Variety International Correspondent, published in VARIETY magazine (USA), August 9 2017 :- 

     'BBC America will launch “Queers,” later this year, the British drama series from “Sherlock” writer Mark Gatiss that looks at life for gay men and women in the U.K.
      The short-form project comprises eight monologues from well-known actors. In the U.K. it was part of a longer “Gay Britannia” season on pubcaster the BBC, which was launched to mark 50th anniversary of The Sexual Offences Act, the law that decriminalized homosexual acts in the U.K.
      BBC America, which is a joint venture between BBC Worldwide and AMC Networks, was a co-producer on the series and it will bow on the cable channel in October.
      The monologues run to 15 minutes apiece, covering the past 100 years, and the characters address topics including the HIV crisis, and the Sexual Offences Act itself.
      A roster of British actor perform the pieces including Ben Whishaw (“Spectre”); Alan Cumming (“The Good Wife”); Gemma Whelan (“Game of Thrones”); and Fionn Whitehead (“Dunkirk”)..... '
----  see more of Stewart Clarke's report, with thanks, at VARIETY's website at :-

Thursday, August 10, 2017

TOM OF FINLAND / Celebrating an outrageous gay icon ...

TOM OF FINLAND review - intriguing biopic of a gay liberation hero

---- selected pars from the introduction to a news-&-review movie report by Peter Bradshaw at The Guardian (UK), 10 August 2017 :-

      'Pekka Strang stars as the Finnish wartime artist Touko Laaksonen, whose homoerotic illustrations helped create the iconography of gay culture.
      Finnish artist Touko Laaksonen, known by his nom de plume Tom of Finland, is brought above the radar of cultural history in this well-acted biopic.
      In postwar Helsinki, in conditions of the gravest illegality, Laaksonen produced thousands on thousands of homoerotic fetish illustrations, showing bulgingly endowed leather-clad guys having an unapologetic good time.
      Tom of Finland’s work reached the liberated US in the 1960s via mail order, and he became a counterculture hero of gay liberation, virtually inventing a whole language of hedonism that influenced Queen, the Village People and the club scene.  .... '
----  see more of Peter Bradshaw's review of this new intriguing biog of Tom of Finland at The Guardian at :-
----  & visit the 37-sec trailer for TOM OF FINLAND in the side column here (at right) ....  with thanks to The Guardian (UK).

MALTA / The new gay holiday experience ...


----  a new summertime holiday experience posted in GayGuideMalta online through June/July/August, outlined 10th August, 2017 :- 

       Find out everything there is to know about gay life in Malta and what to expect. Malta has made leaps and bounds when it comes to gay rights by granting 88% of total rights, placing Malta ahead of the UK and Belgium.
      The ease of gay life in Malta has certainly snowballed in the past few years, both from a legal and social perspective. Until just twenty years ago, being gay in Malta was largely considered a taboo.
     Yet, in 2016, Malta placed first in ILGA Europe’s Rainbow Map, which takes into consideration laws and regulations directly affecting the LGBT community.
      Maltese law grants adoption rights to married couples and single persons, including same-sex gay and lesbian couples and individuals. The first official adoption by a same-sex couple in Malta was in July 2016. IVF access for lesbians is currently illegal, however the present Prime Minister announced, in 2015, the impending introduction of a bill to allow IVF treatment for female same-sex couples.
Malta, today, is one of only five countries in the world who have made LGBT rights equal at constitutional level. The Parliament of Malta unanimously approved a bill which amends the Constitution to add protection from any discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. This includes equal opportunities at the workplace.  ....
....  Malta is increasingly gay friendly. The majority of people are very open minded and even enjoy the revolution, however the older generations and the overtly religious are still resistant. A generally macho male stereotype prevalent in Malta, which nonetheless is changing, means open displays of affection between gay men seem to cause more discomfort than those between lesbian women, if at all.  ....'
----   see more information about holidaying amid gay culture in Malta today at :- 

Saturday, August 5, 2017


NBC (USA) Orders Second Season Of 'Will & Grace' Revival
----  selected lines from a substantial tv-news report re-published at ON TOP MAGAZINE (USA) from its original post at Deadline Hollywood, 4th August 2017 :-

      'NBC has ordered a second season of the much-anticipated Will & Grace revival.  ....
....  Debra Messing, Eric McCormack, Sean Hayes and Megan Mullally (see pic in right-hand column) will reprise their roles as Will & Grace returns to NBC this fall to helm a new Must See TV lineup. The show's creators, David Kohan and Max Mutchnick, and director James Burrows are also returning. ....
.... Will & Grace, which premiered in 1998 and ended its run in 2006, was the first prime time network sitcom to feature a gay lead in McCormack's uptight lawyer, Will, and has been credited for helping advance the LGBT rights movement. Former Vice President Joe Biden in 2012 credited the series with helping advance marriage equality. ....
----  see more of this tv-news post at www.ontopmag.com/article at :-

Monday, July 31, 2017


As  brave as any: Letters reveal untold stories of gay soldiers who risked being shot for 'gross indecency' during two world wars
----  selected opening pars from an historical report by Rory Tingle at the Daily Mail'Mail Online (UK), 28 July 2017 :-

      'They dedicated their youth to defending a country that was often reluctant to accept the way they lived their lives - even at the risk of getting shot.
      And now the incredible stories of the gay men who fought in the two world wars has been revealed in a new book on the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality.
      These include the love letters of First World War sweethearts, working-class Ralph Hall and middle-class soldier Montague Glover, who began a long-term relationship in the 1930s. 
      Both men served in the Army from 1914-18, while Hall joined in the RAF during World War Two, and the couple reunited during peacetime and risked imprisonment for their relationship up until 1967.
      Due to manpower shortages, gay men were unofficially allowed to serve in the armed forces, and around 250,000 of some 5 million British men who during the Second World War are estimated to have been gay or bisexual.
      This is despite the law saying gay recruits could be dismissed with a dishonourable discharge for the mere fact of being gay, and imprisoned or even shot for 'gross indecency' if they engaged in homosexual acts ... ' 
----  see more of this revealing extended article at www.dailymail.co.uk at :- http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4735232/Letters-reveal-stories-gay-soldiers-world-wars.html 

Sunday, July 30, 2017


Gay rights 50 years on: Ten ways in which the UK has changed
----  the opening phrases from an extended statistical report by Rachel Schraer & Joey D'Urso at BBC News (UK), 29 July 2017 :-

      'It's 50 years since the partial decriminalisation of homosexual sex in England and Wales. How did the law change society?
1. Social approval of same-sex relationships has risen rapidly
The proportion of the British public who say they approve of same-sex partnerships has soared over the past 30 years.
      Since 1983 the British Social Attitudes survey has asked people whether they think sexual relationships between two adults of the same sex are "always wrong, mostly wrong, sometimes wrong, rarely wrong or not wrong at all".
      The group of people answering that they thought same-sex partnerships were "not wrong at all" has almost quadrupled from 17% when the survey started in 1983, to 64% in 2016.
      Approval fell in the 1980s when the Aids crisis and the introduction of section 28 - a law prohibiting the promotion or teaching of homosexuality in schools - could have swayed public opinion according to NatCen, the think tank which runs the survey.
      But a steady and rapid rise from the early 1990s reflects a wider trend of social liberalisation, something also seen in changing attitudes to pre-marital sex.  ....
----  see more of Schraer & D'Urso's report, complete with appropriate stats, at www.bbc.com/news/uk at :-

Saturday, July 29, 2017


Britain can't just reverse the homophobia it exported during the empire
----  selected introductory pars from an opinion piece by Edward Akintola Hubbard at The Guardian (UK), 28 July 2017, with thanks :-

      'Imposing criminalisation of homosexuality on the colonies was a whole lot easier than forcing them to drop the laws now. This year is the 50th anniversary of the UK’s decriminalisation of its Buggery Act, which was instituted in 1533, during the reign of King Henry VIII, to make homosexual sex a crime punishable by death.
      As Britain gradually became the world’s most expansive empire over the course of a few centuries, “buggery” laws were exported to its colonies where, in many cases, they have remained in effect to this day. Britain can now celebrate the golden anniversary of the end of the act as one of its many progressivist achievements as a modern democracy.
      However, in former British colonies such as Jamaica, homosexual sex is still prohibited, by sections 76 and 77 of the Offenses Against the Person Act of 1861 – sections that specify “buggery” and “gross indecency” (respectively) as crimes punishable by up to eight years in prison.
      Britain’s abolition of the act was a momentous victory for human rights and social inclusion, but it is fraught with irony. For one, many of its former colonies, which were otherwise eager to remove the shackles of imperial domination and pursue cultural and political independence, were very willing to make an exception in the case of buggery. Former colonial outposts, such as the Anglophone Caribbean, are thought of today as spaces filled with the most extreme forms of homophobic danger, which is supported by anti-gay laws which are actively enforced.  ....
....  The fight against homophobia exists in the contemporary world as an important marker of civilisational status, while homophobia is the ultimate signifier of cultural backwardness and dystopia. .... '
----  see more of Edward Akintola Hubbard's view of this British historical anomaly at The Guardian (UK) at :-

Thursday, July 27, 2017


Remaining to be seen
----  brief quotes from an interesting observation on the rise of gay themed video series in Thailand's online tv, as reported by Kornrawee Panyasuppakun at the Bangkok Post (Thailand), 26 July 2017 :-

      'Gay-themed series are now flooding online TV, but whether the contents are strong enough to address the rights of the LGBT population is still in question.
      Boy love. Sweet kisses. Gay flirts. These had hardly been portrayed openly on Thailand's big and small screens until back in 2007, when teen drama Love Of Siam made a bold move with its kissing scene between two male high-schoolers, Tong and Mew. The film addressed family, teen and gender issues while also stirring debate as to its appropriateness. A decade has passed. As a country that prides itself on being gay-friendly and gender-tolerant, we've seen a huge increase in the volume of gay romance, both on the street and on the screen. Particularly on online channels like YouTube and Line TV, dozens of gay-themed series currently air, each featuring scenes far beyond just hugging and kissing.
      In the past two years, Thai alternative media has been flooded with over 20 gay-romance series. ....
----  see more of this extended report from the Bangkok Post at :-

Wednesday, July 26, 2017


Mark Gattiss: "It feels like many gay rights victories are slipping away"
----  opening excerpts from an opinion-piece by Adrian Lobb at The Big Issue (UK), 25 July 2017 :-

      'Mark Gatiss – perhaps the most powerful gay man in British TV – says the current political climate is a threat to LGBT rights.
      Actor, writer and director Mark Gatiss – one of the most high-profile and powerful gay men in British TV – has voiced his concerns about the erosion of gay rights around the world.
As the BBC’s Gay Britannia season begins, Gatiss tells this week’s Big Issue that there is still an “awful lot to fight for” with LGBT rights, especially given the current political climate.
      “In the metropolitan bubble, we can imagine that everything is straightforward and easy,” says Gatiss, who counts Doctor Who, Sherlock and The League of Gentlemen among his TV credits.
      “The world is a very different place. That is one of the things I find frustrating about the splintering of the gay movement. We have arguments about tiny aspects of our privileged experience while halfway round the world people are being set on fire for being gay.
      “There is a lot that has been gained and an awful lot still to fight for,” he continues. “It is frightening how swiftly things could go back. .... '
----  see more of Adrian Lobb's substantial profile of Mark Gattiss at www.bigissue.com at :-

Friday, July 21, 2017


Shakespeare may have been gay says artistic director of RSC
----  selected lines from a substantial news report collated by reporters at The Telegraph (UK), 21 July 2017 :-

      'William Shakespeare may have been gay, the artistic director the Royal Shakespeare Company has suggested, and directors can no longer hide the sexuality of his homosexual characters.
      Greg Doran on Friday dipped into the long-running debate on the Bard’s sexuality, saying he believed it had given Shakespeare an outsider’s insight which had helped his work.
      Mr Doran, who took over artistic control of the RSC in 2012, said it was “no longer acceptable” that performances should conceal the sexuality of Shakespeare’s gay characters. ....
....  Mr Doran told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I guess a growing understanding of Shakespeare as I have worked with him over the many years that I have, makes me realise that his perspective is very possibly that of an outsider.
      “It allows him to get inside the soul of a black general, a Venetian jew, an Egyptian queen or whatever and that perhaps that outsider perspective has something to do with his sexuality.”
      The key clues to understanding Shakespeare’s sexuality were in his sonnets, Mr Doran said. ....'
----  see more of Greg Doran's views at www.telegraph.co.uk at its online address at :-
----  see too Jason Murdock's version of this report at the International Business Times (UK), 23 July 2017, at :-


How Merchant and Ivory's 'MAURICE'paved the way for gay romance
----  the initial pars from a substantial movie historical report written by Pam Grady at the San Francisco Chronicle (USA), 19 July 2017 :-

      'Director James Ivory and his life partner and producer, Ismail Merchant, were riding high after the 1987 release of their adaptation of E.M. Forster’s novel “A Room with a View.” The film resonated with critics and audiences alike and garnered eight Academy Award nominations, winning three.
      With such heady success, Ivory and Merchant could attract backers to make whatever they wanted for their next film. Ivory set his sights on another Forster novel, “Maurice,” a gay love story.

      “It was a movie we all felt strongly about, because nobody really wanted us to make it,” Ivory, now 89, recalled in a 2012 Toronto Star interview. (Merchant died in 2005 at age 68.)
      Nevertheless, the partners persevered. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the release of “Maurice,” which is returning to theaters in a new 4K digital restoration. The film premiered at the 1987 Venice Film Festival, where it won three awards, including the Silver Lion and an acting prize for [UK] co-stars James Wilby and Hugh Grant (it was only his second film). .... '
----  see more of Pam Grady's extended essay on the impact and effect of  'MAURICE' in the development of gay themes in contemporary cinema at :- 

Wednesday, July 12, 2017


National security figures launch project to counter Russian mischief
----  two selected pars from an extended news report published in the San Francisco Chronicle from Josh Rogin's post at The Washington Post (USA), 11 July 2017 :-

      'Amid all the controversy over Russian hacking, interference and propaganda efforts in the United States and Europe, there's a growing concern among national security leaders that not enough is being done to stop the efforts. That's why a large group of senior figures from both parties is launching a new effort to track and ultimately counter Russian political meddling, cyber-mischief and fake news.
      The roster of figures who have signed onto the new project, called the Alliance for Securing Democracy, is a who's who of former senior national security officials from both parties. ....
....  The idea is to create a platform and repository of information about Russian political influence activities in the United States and Europe that can be the basis for cooperation and a resource for analysts on both sides of the Atlantic to push back against Russian meddling.
      The project aims to be able to eventually map out Russian disinformation on social networks, cyber-efforts, financial flows, broader state-level cooperation and even Russian government support for far-left or far-right parties in other countries. .... '
----  see more of Josh Rogin'g three-page report showing further details and personnel at www.sfchronicle.com/opinion site at :- 

Sunday, July 9, 2017


10 Myths About Lesbians You Need To Stop Believing Now
----  a (very delayed since April) opening excerpt from a delightful essay on lesbian social behavior by Rebekah Allen at Teen Vogue (USA), April 2017 :-

      'No, we don't all love The L Word. Forget everything you think you know about Lesbians. Well, not everything. Some truth remain undeniably unavoidable (say, for example, that whole 'being attracted to women' thing) but for reasons our identity also comes with a bunch of misconceptions and stereotypes that range from casually cute to potentially dangerous.
      Of course, some stereotypes exist for a reason. Personally, do I own at least 10 beautiful flannel shirts? Yes, proudly.
      I also own around 30 pairs of Converse and I literally have a rainbow tattooed on my body.
      However, I am fully aware that the next girl I swipe right for on Tinder might hate rainbows and think flannel is downright atrocious. Is nothing sacred any more? Who can we trust?! Just kidding ...'

----  see more of Rebekah Allen's delightfully witty ruminations on the ten myths of being a lesbian at www.teenvogue.com last April at :-

Saturday, July 8, 2017


Thousands march in London for Gay Pride milestone
----  the opening lines from a news post at ChannelNewsAsia (Singapore), 9 July 2017 :-

      'LONDON: Tens of thousands of people descended on London's streets on Saturday (Jul 8) for the annual gay Pride march, marking the 50th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales.
      Armed police and strict security measures were in place to protect revellers following a recent spate of terror attacks, with around 25,000 participants parading down Regent Street, many wearing flamboyant costumes, waving rainbow flags and holding colourful balloons.
      Hundreds of thousands more were expected to party thorough the night around the Soho district.
      "This is the biggest Pride in London's history and in Pride's history, there are more than 1.5 million people here today, and it's really important that Londoners are free to be who they want to be, free to love who they want to love," London mayor Sadiq Khan told AFP as he joined marchers.
      "We've had a horrific few weeks with the terrible fire at Grenfell Tower and three terrorist attacks, and what today's about is love," he added.  .... '
----  see more about current Gay Pride celebrations in London at :- 
----  see too a substantial report on the London Pride celebrations by Sadiq Khan at NEWS24 (USA), 10 July 2017 at :-

Thursday, July 6, 2017

THE PRIDE FLAG / Its history ...

What is the history of the Pride flag and the meaning behind it?
----  a report by Imogen Groome at METRO.com.uk, 5th July 2017 :-

      'Every year, Pride month is celebrated across the world, and the flag that has come to be associated with the LGBTQ community becomes more prominent.
      But what is the history of the Pride flag, and what does it mean?
      The story begins with Gilbert Baker, an openly gay activist born in 1951 who taught himself to sew after receiving an honourable discharge from the US army.
      In 1974, he met Harvey Milk, an influential gay leader. Three years later, Milk challenged Baker to come up with a symbol of pride for the gay community.
      On June 25 1978, the original gay pride flag flew in the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade.
It’s been suggested that Baker may have been inspired by Judy Garland singing Over the Rainbow, and the Stonewall riots that happened a few days after her death. ....

----  Read more of Imogen Groome's interesting historical essay at :- :

Sunday, July 2, 2017


Majority Support Gay Marriage, Even Evangelicals
---- two selected pars from a substantial news report posted by Gary Nguyen at World Religion News (USA), 29 June 2017 :-

      'Support for gay rights in the USA is increasing, according to a new research study. More than 60 percent of Americans, including white evangelicals, support gay marriage. The research has also found that for the first time ever, people from the baby boomer generation have also indicated they support gay rights. The rise in support for gay rights is sudden, and in many ways, even surprising. ....
....  Overall, 62 percent of Americans support gay marriage today, as opposed to the meager 32 percent that opposes same-sex unions. The support for gay marriage has increased from 29 percent to 51 percent, and from 29 percent in 2016 to 47 percent this year.  ... '
----  see more of Gary Nguyen's post and its statistical conclusions at :-
----  and visit the blue-outlined links for further confirmation.

Saturday, July 1, 2017


Germany passes same-sex marriage law
----  selected opening lines from a news report published by press-agency AFP-JIJI, AP at The Japan Times (Japan), 30th June, 2017 :-

      'Germany legalized same-sex marriage on Friday, joining many other Western democracies in granting gay couples full rights, including adoption.
      The election-year bill was pushed by Chancellor Angela Merkel’s leftist rivals, who pounced on a U-turn she made Monday — a maneuver that left many of her conservative lawmakers fuming.
      The lower house, the Bundestag, approved the law hours before heading into summer recess.
      Gay groups cheered the push for marriage equality in Germany, where so-called civil unions were legalized in 2001.
      The law likely will take effect this year. ....
....  Merkel, who long opposed gay marriage with adoption rights, citing “the well-being of the children,” replied that her thinking had shifted since she met a lesbian couple who cared for eight foster children. .... '
----  see more of this news report from The Japan Times at :-

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Eight Books Featuring Bisexual Women ...

8 Books That Feature Bisexual Women (And Don't Focus On Their Sex Lives)
----  the opening lines from a set of extended reviews by Casey of eight books at Autostraddle.com (USA), 29 June 2017 :-

       'This month at Ask Your Friendly Neighborhood Lesbrarian we’re going to tackle something I haven’t focused on yet: bisexual women. A while ago I was tweeting about making a big list of bisexual books, and Mischa replied: “I honestly would like any kind of list, they’re a little hard to find.” Mischa further specified that it seems easier to find bi characters in YA and they’re not into erotica so they would like books that are neither.
      This request gets at a few crucial issues for bi folks. There is a trend in media to have bisexual-behaving characters “reject labels” and refuse to talk about identity. Young adult literature focuses on adolescence, where identity formation is at the forefront, so it makes sense that YA is doing better than books for other ages at making bi characters explicit. But where are the grown-up bisexuals?
      The other issue is the association of bisexuals with promiscuity and hypersexuality. Obviously erotica and porn by, for, and about bisexual women is rad. But the stereotype of bi women as hypersexual means it can be hard to find portrayals of bisexual women outside of sexual situations. .... '
----  see more of Casey's informative reviews of eight titles at www.autostraddle.com (with thanks) at :-  https://www.autostraddle.com/bisexual-women-in-fiction-381595/ 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Human Rights Court rules Russia violates freedom of expression ...

European court rules in favor of Russian gay activists
----   the initial pars of a news report by Nataliya Vasilyeva at the Washington Post (USA), 20th June 2017 :"-

      'MOSCOW — The European Court for Human Rights on Tuesday ruled that Russia’s law banning dissemination of so-called gay propaganda to minors violates the right to freedom of expression.
      In the first major court battle for gay activists who have contested the law, the court found in favor of three gay activists who claimed the law violated the rights to freedom of expression and prohibition of discrimination under the European Convention on Human Rights. The applicants were awarded some 50,000 euros ($55,000) in total.
      Over the course of several years, Nikolai Alexeyev, Nikolai Bayev and Alexei Kiselyov have staged pickets to promote gay rights and unsuccessfully applied for permission to hold gay pride parades in Russia.
      “By adopting such laws the authorities reinforce stigma and prejudice and encourage homophobia, which is incompatible with the notions of equality, pluralism and tolerance inherent in a democratic society,” the seven-judge panel said in the ruling, adding that “Russian authorities overstepped the margin of appreciation” of Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights that guarantees freedom of expression.  .... '
----  see more of Nataliya Vasilyeva's post at www.washingtonpost.com/world at (with thanks) :-

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Germany quashes Nazi Era gay convictions ...

Germany to quash convictions of gay men under Nazi-era law
----  selected pars from an extended news post by the Foreign Staff of The Telegraph (UK), 23 June 2017 :-

      'The German parliament has voted to quash the convictions of 50,000 gay men sentenced for homosexuality under a Nazi-era law which remained in force after the war and offer compensation.
     After decades of lobbying, victims and activists hailed a triumph in the struggle to clear the names of gay men who lived with a criminal record under Article 175 of the penal code.
An estimated 5,000 of those found guilty under the statute are still alive.  ....
....  Germany's Article 175 outlawed "sexual acts contrary to nature... be it between people of the male gender or between people and animals".
      Sex between women was not explicitly illegal.
      Although it dated from 1871, it was rarely enforced until the Nazis came to power, and in 1935 they toughened the law to carry a sentence of 10 years of forced labour. .... '

----  see more of The Telegraph's news post at :-
----  and read a similar report at the Indian Express (India) at :-

Friday, June 23, 2017

"JEWS QUEERS GERMANS" / Introducing "a novel history" ...

Gay history comes alive
----  the opening pars from a book review by Tim Pfaff at The Bay Area Reporter (San Francisco), 22nd June 2017 :- 

      'In calling his compelling new book "Jews Queers Germans" (Seven Stories Press, USA) "a novel/history," Martin Duberman is not being ambiguous, but rather, purposeful. The CUNY emeritus professor of history has long established his scholarly creds, but in his new book, about matters close to his heart, he's expanding on what he knows – not forsaking history, adding imagination.
      As he himself notes, the rise of LGBTQ history as a recognized academic endeavor has made several of his principal subjects – Magnus Hirschfeld and Count Harry Hessler, in particular – celebrated figures in the modern campaign for gay rights beginning in mid-19th-century Germany, where queerness first acquired the name "homosexualitaet." But even in books that have considered that enterprise in toto, the tendency to tell the history through individual story-lines has predominated. Duberman achieves his synthesis – a word I can't imagine he'd mind – by letting their stories intertwine, weaving in with them the far less well-known figures of Prince Philipp von Eulenberg; Kaiser Wilhelm's close friend, the deeply closeted politician and intellectual Walther Rathenau; and Ernst Roehm, the leader of the brownshirt SA, who was as cautious about the categorization of his sexuality as he was profligate in its notoriously open expression. .... '
----  see more of Tim Pfaff's substantial appraisal of Martin Duberman's "Jews Queers Germans" (plus note its cover art in the right-hand site column) at The Bay Area Reporter Online at :- 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

WHEN 'GAY POWER' BEGAN / A half-century of reminiscence since Stonewall ...

Claiming 'Gay Power' History for Ourselves 48 Years After Stonewall
----  a lively first-hand observation contributed as an historical post by journalist Josh-Manuel Andriote at Huffington Post (USA), 19th June 2017 :-

      'New York police thought it would be just another routine raid of a gay bar. But tonight, Friday night, June 27, 1969, was different. The young black and Latino kids and drag queens who frequented the Stonewall Inn were in no mood for it.
      “I was in the back of the bar near the dance floor, where the younger people usually hung out,” recalls Philadelphia Gay News founder and publisher Mark Segal in his memoir And Then I Danced: Traveling the Road to LGBT Equality. Segal was 18 years old at the time, newly arrived in Manhattan, and a Stonewall regular. As usual, he said, the cops “walked in like they owned the place, cocky, assured that they could do and say whatever they wanted and push people around with impunity. We had no idea why they came in, whether or not they’d been paid, wanted more payoffs, or simply wanted to harass the fags that night.”
      As the cops emptied the bar, a crowd gathered outside in Sheridan Square. Onlookers jeered and catcalled as a paddywagon hauled away the bartender, the bouncer, and three drag queens. After a lesbian put up a struggle as the officers steered her through the crowd to a patrol car, all hell broke loose.
      “Limp wrists were forgotten,” the Village Voice reported a few days later. “Beer cans and bottles were heaved at the windows and a rain of coins descended on the cops . . . Almost by signal the crowd erupted into cobblestone and bottle heaving . . . From nowhere came an uprooted parking meter—used as a battering ram on the Stonewall door. I heard several cries of ‘let’s get some gas,’ but the blaze of flame which soon appeared in the window of the Stonewall was still a shock.” Backups rescued the cops from the flames.  .... '
----  see more of this historical reminiscence by Josh-Manuel Andriote at www.huffingtonpost.com at :- 
----  see too a related report by Daniel Megarry applauding Google's funding gesture, as published in the UK's popular Gay Times site at :-

Monday, June 19, 2017

FUSE Magazine confirms a gay hero ...

Future LGBTQ History: The Light & Love in Gus Kenworthy's Public Journey
----  several grabs about a courageous winter sports phenomenon - ski athlete Gus Kenworthy -  from editorial contributor Jeff Benjamin at FUSE online magazine (USA), 19 June 2017 :-

      'The Olympic medal–winning skier's coming out process has been heavily documented and he's been a shining example for anyone struggling with their sexuality.
      Fuse is celebrating Pride Month by looking at a variety of rising forces who are creating Future LGBTQ History before our eyes. Today we're honoring Gus Kenworthy, the Olympic medal–winning freestyle skier who is noted as being the first action-sports star to come out. And less than two years later, now acts as a shining mentor to anyone questioning their sexuality.
      "I am gay," can be some of the most empowering or some of the scariest words a LGBTQ person can say out loud and Kenworthy did so with a high-profile ESPN Magazine cover story. Before the story published, the athlete took to his own social media to share his thoughts and reflections in his own words. "For most of my life I’ve dreaded the day that people would find out I was gay," he wrote in an Instagram post. "Now, I couldn’t be more excited to tell you all the truth. Whether you've suspected it all along or it's a complete shock, it’s important for me to be open and honest with you all. Y’all have supported me through a lot of my highs and lows and I hope you'll stay by my side as I make this transformation into the genuine me—the me that I’ve always really been." .... '
----  see more of Jeff Benjamin's inspiring post at www.fuse.tv/2017 at :-


Hundreds of thousands attend Brazil's gay pride parade, slam religious fundamentalism
----  the opening few pars to an extended news report in The Japan Times (Japan), published 19th June 2017 :-

      'Hundreds of thousands of revelers gathered in Sao Paulo [Brazil] on Sunday for one of the world’s largest gay pride parades, with this year’s event focusing on the threat of religious fundamentalism to Brazil’s LGBT community.
      Under a giant rainbow-colored flag, revelers of all ages, many wearing bright wigs, turned the city’s Paulista avenue into a multicolored sea of people filling more than 10 city blocks. Organizers said they expected 3 million people to participate in Sao Paulo’s 21st annual gay pride parade, though military police did not release a crowd estimate.
      Grammy award-winning singer Daniela Mercury and Brazilian pop star Anitta performed at a parade that organizers said would focus on secularism and the idea that no religion is law regardless of people’s individual beliefs.  .... '
----  see more of The Japan Times' unascribed news report at www.japantimes.co.jp at :-

Sunday, June 18, 2017


The National Portrait Gallery Salutes Queer Icon MARLENE DIETRICH
---- an exhibition acknowledging one of cinema history's most memorable personalities, described by Trish Bendix at NewNowNext (USA), 16th June 2017 :-

      "She pioneered so much for women, as well as openness about sexuality in an age that we wouldn't have expected it," says “Marlene Dietrich: Dressed for the Image" curator Kate LeMay.
      Marlene Dietrich was a queer icon almost as soon as she hit the silver screen: She followed up her debut in 1930’s Blue Angel with Morroco, a movie that saw her singing in top hat and tails and kissing another woman on the mouth.
      The German screen goddess was openly bisexual in real life, too, enjoying dalliances with everyone from John Wayne and Douglas Fairbanks Jr. to Edith Piaf and (allegedly) Greta Garbo. (Dietrich referred to the sapphic-friendly starlets she hung out with—Tallulah Bankhead, Joan Crawford, Barbara Stanwyck and Isadora Duncan—as “the Sewing Circle.”)
       She was also a trailblazing style icon, with an androgynous flair that Marilyn Monroe, Madonna, and even Sasha Velour have paid homage to.
      This month, the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery is honoring Dietrich with the first major North American exhibition dedicated to her..... '
----  see more of Trish Bendix's fascinating article with memorable photographs at www.newnownext.com at :-
----  [Trish Bendix is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor. She is currently the editor in chief of GO Magazine and a former editor in chief for AfterEllen.com.]
----  photos courtesy of The Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, USA)


.... here are a dozen movie trailers from recent international sources (click on center-frame arrows, below, to activate). They are updated regularly ... with thanks to
YouTube & the movies' international distributors ...

ARGENTINA'S 'ESTEROS" / A new movie .... click on the center arrow ...

When someone becomes the CENTER OF MY WORLD (Germany) 2016 ...

A classic movie returns in 2017 ... now on enhanced dvd



ASIAN GAY ROMANCE fights stigma in Hollywood ...

"THE PASS" ... its 2017 movie trailer

"BEING 17" / Young love finds a way ...

Twenty-two year old David has it all – he’s young, hot, and he’s just got into the prestigious dance school of his dreams. But he has a secret: for two years he’s been sleeping with his sister’s husband, Jules.

SOFT LAD is the directorial debut from Leon Lopez, an examination of lust, jealousy and their consequences in contemporary Liverpool. Starring UK artists Daniel Brocklebank (Coronation Street) and Jonny Labey (EastEnders).

Passions ignite and hidden secrets are revealed when a graphic designer in Los Angeles reconnects with an ex-boyfriend he hasn’t seen or heard from in 15 years. LAZY EYE is a story about roads not taken, unfinished business, and the struggle to adjust to progressive lenses. Written and directed by Tim Kirkman (LOGGERHEADS, DEAR JESSE, THE NIGHT LARRY KRAMER KISSED ME), LAZY EYE stars Lucas Near-Verbrugghe, Aaron Costa Ganis and Michaela Watkins.


"LILTING' - British actor Ben Wishaw tests his range again ...


"What is like to live in a world where you have no grasp of its language, and your only lifeline to that is lost." In "LILTING" Ben Wishaw, wide ranging UK character actor from Shakespeare to James Bond movies, tests his range even further.

"Best gay-themed movie ever!" ... ?

STONEWALL | The birth of a Movement ...

FREEHELD - A subtle gay rights challenge ...

VENICE FESTIVAL ENTRY: "From Afar" (Venezuela 2015)

Peter Greenaway's EISENSTEIN, Stalin's eccentric filmmaker ...


BISEXUAL WOMEN | How to be oneself? ...



GAY LIFE in Switzerland in the '50's ...



A fair-haired young man, dressed in rich ceremonial armor, is found dead in the Nile River. When he is identified, everyone realizes the dangerous political implications of this death, because Antinous was the eromenos—the lover and protégé—of the Roman Emperor Hadrian.

A grief-stricken Hadrian appoints two members of the court, Suetonius and his patron Clarus, to find out how and why Antinous died. They have two days to find the answer, permission to interrogate anyone except the Emperor and Empress, and the promise that they may forfeit their lives if they fail to satisfy Hadrian.

Failure is a distinct possibility. While Antinous was well-liked and respected, the circle of suspects is wide, as it often will be when the victim is the confidant of an absolute ruler. The two sleuths quickly draft unlikely but able assistants to help them, including a scribe and an observant, multilingual prostitute.

The book offers an extensively researched picture of life in the Roman Empire of 130 AD. Gardiner is equally convincing when writing about imperial politics and succession laws, marriage and sexual customs, philosophy and the theater.

But The Hadrian Enigma—a mix of mystery, comedy, gay and straight romance—is an entertaining read.

(See more at :-http://historicalnovelsociety.org/reviews/the-hadrian-enigma-a-forbidden-history/

THE HADRIAN ENIGMA | A review by historical fiction author J.R. Tomlin ...

An excerpt from a review of August 15, 2011

" .... In 130 AD, while accompanying the Emperor Hadrian on a tour up the Nile, the beautiful youth Antinous plunges into the Nile and drowns. Hadrian, near maddened with grief, declares Antinous a god. However, Suetonius just happens to be along on this imperial tour. Already the author of juicy books on contemporary Roman life, he is perfectly placed to investigate this mysterious death, so Emperor Hadrian commands him to investigate and find the murderer within 48 hours or suffer the consequences.

In the imperial compound on the Nile, Suetonius searches for clues. Here, semi-isolated, the bubbling cauldron of the Roman court has been transplanted to a fabulous tent city. Yet, the mystery of Egypt is an ever present backdrop to this baffling death. .... Why was Antinous clad in heavy ceremonial parade armor and weapons when he died? How did he come by a slit on his left wrist and strange marks on his throat? And how can Suetonius unravel all this when the Emperor refuses to let Suetonius even touch the body to examine it? The characterization is vivid and the historicity meticulous in this novel. I enjoyed savoring the characters and setting as Suetonius unraveled the imperial goings on. .... "

See more of J.R. Tomlin's review at her author's blogsite "Writing & More" at : http://jeannetomlin.blogspot.com/


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Bye-bye for now from George Gardiner's THE HADRIAN ENIGMA rainbow-community site ...

Thank you for visiting my book's information site COOL GAY STUFF.

Please come back soon to note new posts, movie trailers, or publications & reviews.

Immediately below this bye-bye lies the complete bibliography consulted to research THE HADRIAN ENIGMA, its era, its historical personalities, & its cultural forms.