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‘Queer’ Quotables and Facts

“To me, ‘Queer as Folk’ means ‘queer as regular people.’ The characters on this show want the same things as everybody else. They live with the same kind of challenges, just in a different shade.” — Hal Sparks, who portrays Michael on Showtimes’ “Queer as Folk,” in The Advocate.

Daniel Lipman, one of “QAF’s” executive producers, along with his work and life partner, Ron Cowen, created the NBC drama “Sisters” and the AIDS-themed TV movie “An Early Frost” (starring Aidan Quinn), both of which won Emmy Awards.

“This is probably the first time in history that gay people will actually get a chance to see their lives portrayed truthfully on television with no restrictions and censorship. … It was certainly written with the intention of showing all aspects of gay life honestly.” — Cowen, in The Advocate.

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“So far I’ve done … several sex scenes, and those are easy. The hard scenes are the emotional ones.” — Randy Harrison, 22 and newly out in real life, in The Advocate. He portray’s “QAF’s” 17-year-old new kid on the block, Justin.

“Nothing has really surprised me about playing Justin just because he is gay.” — Harrison, on playing a gay character in Out.

Harrison, 22, is an Atlanta native and has a boyfriend of 3 1/2 years. His boyfriend is a fellow actor he met while studying drama at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

“He hates himself less than anybody in the piece. Somewhere along the way he just got it that he’s OK, and if you don’t like it, [expletive] off. I think that’s revolutionary.” — Peter Paige, “QAF’s” other openly gay cast member, on his character, the flamboyant Emmett.

According to “QAF’s” producers, several presumably gay-friendly designers such as Versace and Perry Ellis have refused to allow their duds to be featured on the show. And the maker of Cocoa Puffs has said that it doesn’t want the characters using its product.

“I find it disturbing that the Versace company says you can’t show Versace. I mean, he was gay. Perry Ellis’ company said no, and Perry Ellis died of AIDS. Abercrombie & Fitch, whose ads are so homoerotic, won’t allow their clothes [to be shown]. That’s extremely offensive because they obviously want gay people’s money, but they also don’t want to be associated with gay people. And gay people should know that.” — Cowen, in The Advocate.

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“It seems like any time I see lesbians portrayed in film, they have to be carrying guns and doing something dangerous. We’re just two women trying to cope with life.” — Michelle Clunie, who portrays no-nonsense attorney Melanie, on her relationship on the show with her lover, Lindsay (Thea Gill), in The Advocate.

“I have a great connection with Thea. I really do love her, adore her, and would marry her if things didn’t work out with my boyfriend — and would be really happy to spend the rest of my life with her.” — Clunie, in Out.

“‘Queer as Folk’ is about freedom, enlightenment, love, humor. You know, all the things that make life worth living.” — Gale Harold, who portrays sexy ad exec Brian, in The Advocate.

Quotes and facts are from the Nov. 21, 2000, edition of The Advocate and the December 2000 edition of Out.

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