Body Language (Pros/Harry & Johnny story)

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Title: Body Language
Author(s): Antonia Jordon Kay
Date(s): 1986
Genre: slash
Fandom: Pros/Harry & Johnny story
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Body Language is a Pros/Harry & Johnny story by Antonia Jordan Kay.

It was published in Mixed Media in 1986.

This story was the subject of a discussion in Short Circuit #3 (October 1990).

It's a bit more difficult to postulate that two contemporary male agents, raised in a society which eventually spawned such homophobic measures as Clause 28, could fall in love with each other — all the while being completely and blissfully ignorant of the significance of such an act. I've seen it done in some stories. Bodie, who has never before fallen for a man, falls in love with an equally inexperienced Doyle. Now this certainly CAN happern, and has many times. Many gay people reach their 30s or 40s or even older ages before they find each other. In real life, such same-sex couples are forced by our society to confront the prejudice, discrimination and condemnation with which our society greets these realizations of love. But a few slash writers completely pass over these societal consequences. Bodie and Doyle happily whisper to each other that they're NOT gay, that they don't love men, they only love each other. A few stories carry this even further by asserting that the two will not have a monogamous relationship (would it make them too "gay" to have them be exclusive?) They'll continue having sex with their "birds" (but not other men, heaven forbid) while they continue their relationship.

Fortunately, I have found many Bodie/Doyle stories which DO deal with the significance of their commitment as a same-sex couple. I don't know the sexual orientation of the writers involved, nor is it really important. To name a few well-known examples of gay-positive stories, I'll name the more recent works of Kathy Keegan and Jane, many of Meg Lewtan's works, and Jane Carnell's works. [snipped] And no, the two do NOT have to move into the "gay ghetto" nor do they have to become out of the-closet activists to be gay in this society. They can actually be bisexual in orientation (I see Doyle from the episodes as being bisexual; I may discuss this more in depth later on). The "gay lifestyle" doesn't only mean cruise bars, baths and promiscuity. It can simply mean two men (or two women) who commit themselves to a primary relationship.

A story I just read illustrates this: "Body Language" which is a Bodie/Doyle and Harry/Johnny cross-over. In this story, Bodie and Doyle see themselves forced by their job and society to immerse themselves deeply in the closet. This brings adverse results; Doyle gets drunk periodically and Bodie keeps his emotions closely under wraps. Bodie finds it necessary to assert to himself and also to Harry Callahan that he "isn't gay." This isn't the author engaging in an unrealistic fantasy; the author is portraying the reality of a deeply closeted man. Doyle asks Bodie to kiss him. Bodie hesitates, even in the private company of another same-sex couple (H & J). When he overcomes his fear (yes, big brave Bodie can be terrified of such an act), the ensuing scene is one of the most loving I have ever read in B/D literature. No fireworks, no long, drawn-out sexual gymnastics -- merely a kiss. But the story is "dark" in tone. Bodie and Doyle are isolated, they don't have the safe company of other gays. Their too-brief encounter with the American couple is an oasis in a desert. This is sad reality for many gay couples in our society.