I just went and saw the new Beauty and the Beast. It’s rather amusing. After the announcement about LeFou, I remember reading someone’s prediction as to how his characterization was going to play out, and it legit did. Beat by beat. I mean, what other way would Disney have done it of course? But… yeah…
On that note… and not to say this is a good thing per se, but during the Gaston song, I got the strong impression that Gaston would be more than happy to have LeFou as his companion. I don’t know, nothing about the performance made me feel like Gaston felt anything at all—even lust—for Belle other than the desire to ‘win’ over the ‘girl’ who everyone thinks is ‘the best.’ The only line that remotely felt like Gaston genuinely having any interest in anyone other than himself or LeFou was the ‘remember the widows’ line.
But he was more than happy to have LeFou lounge across the back of his chair like a cat. The only thing to cheer him was LeFou serenading him. He was more than responsive to all of LeFou’s touches and embraces. In fact, the one where LeFou asks ‘too much?’, when Gaston is legit embracing him and LeFou is holding his arms, that was a joint effort. That was not just LeFou. Gaston just backpeddaled away from it when LeFou asked him about it (probably because he was confused how it got so far when he never would have dared to dream…).
He felt very much to me like a man trying desperately to keep up pretenses, most especially to himself. While in the animated film, LeFou felt like a resignedly put-up-with tag-along, he felt like a genuinely valued comrade in this in a way no other person was for Gaston. In fact, the moment LeFou passes on the task of rubbing Gaston’s ears, Gaston is alarmed to realize it’s not LeFou—well before he realizes it’s some other (grimy) dude.
I don’t know that this take away/interpretation does the movie any credit. If this were the case, it would still be giving us only villainesque queer representation with the primary villain’s motives stemming from his queerness. I’m sure too it wasn’t at al intentional by anyone writing the script (who knows if the actor did it intentionally… though doubtfully). Still, it was interesting to realize that that interpretation felt more organic than any other being attempted on screen to explain his actions.
Anyone else get this feeling? Especially my mutuals?