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Dear Reader, we have gathered here today to talk about the latest, greatest entry to the grand cinematic legacy of queer women who could step on me: Peach Salinger (Shay Mitchell). Arguably the best of the worst on YOU, a dramatic, soap opera-level comedic thriller in which a man stalks a not-so-innocent woman, Peach is one of the rare evil bisexuals on TV who doesn't leave me conflicted and heartbroken.
Like most queer women who grew up in the era of Disney villains who were far more complex and layered than their goody-two shoes counterparts, there are two distinctly different parts of my brain that start screaming when a woman like Peach graces my screen. Forebrain: Why must all this nuanced queerness be presented as unequivocally bad? When will I enjoy a narrative that doesn't reduce queer characters to a plot point that must be overcome? When will the queers simply be able to enjoy the onscreen queers without the Sisyphean burden of advancing representation? What if there was a queer love story that wasn't tragedy porn (bonus points if neither of them die)?
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Hindbrain: Good lord... she's gonna shoot this trash man over a stolen book while wearing a black silk robe. I would die for you, Peach.
Landscape - YOU - Penn - Badgley - Evolution
But against the florid emotional landscape of YOU, which gives us Penn Badgley as the natural evolution of his Gossip Girl character (stalking women, stealing identities, prematurely ejaculating in 8 seconds, murdering people left and right, as well as sincerely thinking that he is the only true feminist his reluctant girlfriend knows), Peach's sinister proclivities seem totally normcore. It's not that Peach's own bad deeds are negligible. Between a hard drive full of creepshots and playing gay chicken in a threesome in which the dude is completely...
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