Cyrus Goodman is one of the most important characters to look at when discussing LGBTQ+ Disney characters. He is the first Disney Channel character to refer to himself as gay.
As seen here in this clip from the season three episode, Once In a Minyan, Cyrus refers to himself as gay. It’s a small moment but one of the biggest things about this episode is the fact that Cyrus was able to say gay. That always felt like a word that children’s media seemed to like to dance around that word. Now, another big thing to look at in this episode is how it also deals with homosexuality and religion. As you see Cyrus’s family is Jewish and his grandmother has just passed away, so this takes place while they are sitting in Shiva.
Shiva is a period of mourning that generally lasts seven days, starting when the mourners return home from the funeral.
It does seem as though, this part was handled with respect, and while I am not Jewish and cannot speak to the authenticity of how it is portrayed. I believe in ways that come from the writer of this episode, Johnathan Hurwitz as it pulls from his life as he wrote for GLAAD. Hurtwitz himself is both gay and Jewish so that does help things feel authentic. And as he wrote for GLAAD…
…. I shared a personal story about how nervous I was to come out to a college friend back in 2010. While grabbing burgers one afternoon, he asked me to pass the ketchup, so I handed him the bottle while mumbling the words, “I’m gay.” He looked up at me, said “Cool,” then proceeded to put ketchup on his burger as if I hadn’t just revealed my most personal, deepest truth. I remember thinking: “That’s it?! After a ten-year journey to come out to myself, I finally come out to my friend and all I get is a ‘Cool?!’” But what I ultimately realized was that my friends and family loved me unconditionally before I’d even learned to truly love myself.
This is something that I know and imagine so many other LGBTQ people go through as we build up the moment of coming out in our heads and how the people around will react. I had nightmares and fears for weeks before I finally came out as bi to my mom. Though, it went okay in the end. And like Cyrus here, where he lets it casually slip that he’s gay, I’ve accidentally let it slip that I was bi and it was a little mortifying but things went well. As seen throughout the episode, Cyrus is trying to figure out how to come out to Jonah from what I understand, he had a crush on him in the early days of the show. Aw, cute.
Overall as I said, everything is handled well and I think this is one of the best handlings of a character coming out and making it so that kids can understand. Oh, and btw Cyrus’s actor, Joshua Rush later came out as bisexual.
First to respond to this tweet is bi lol,” he tweeted.
Rush, who played Cyrus Goodman on “Andi Mack,” which recently wrapped, answered his own tweet first.
“First! I win! it’s me. I’m bi. And now that I’ve said that, I have a few things to rant about,” he tweeted. “There are more important things to talk about than me liking a whole bunch of genders, but I do want to share a few things with you guys.”
Apparently playing Cyrus gave him the courage to come out and that is wonderful. Anything that can make young LGTBQ youths feel more comfortable being their true selves is wonderful. And I can only hope that characters such as Cyrus can serve to show how accepting the future generation will be of the LGBTQ+ youth. Join me next time as we head to The Lodge, a British Disney Channel show that I didn’t know existed to look at the character of Josh.