Gay Chat: Top Gay Magnets in 2012

10: Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana

These two funky fashionistas have designed their way into our hearts. They may not know how to bed women, but they certainly know how to dress them!

09: Sean Hayes

As the drama queen sidekick of the Will is US sitcom Will and Grace, his prissy little sissy character has not put us off. The baby blues and the boy-next-door look still make him a firm fave.

08: Perez Hilton

He’s famous for bitching about famous bitches and rarely stays out of the headlines himself. Hilton has to be the homo we love to hate. Whatever the truth is behind how the celeb blogger’s body recently went from bulging to buffed, now he’s ditched the flab and firmed up, those biceps have got our blood pumping.

07: Giorgio Armani

The high priest of high fashion might share a complexion with some of his leather manbag creations, but by a pair of jeans with his name on and you’ll notice how they maximise your bulge! That’s sure to have earned him a fair few fans.

06: George Takei

This veteran actor is happily married now, but I’d like to think in his Star Trek days, when he wasn’t busy manning the helm of the Starship Enterprise, he could have been having a whole lot of fun discovering new worlds with Captain Kirk.

05: Queen Latifah

The hip hop diva hasn’t officially come out, but there are a whole lotta ladies who wouldn’t mind getting their hands on some of that regal booty! She’s soon to make her first official public appearance at this year’s Long Beach Lesbian and Gay Pride Festival, so gay or not, we gotta love a sista for that.

04: Boy George

The British pop prince and DJ made man make-up and guyliner cool for everyone back in the 80s. The public loves a survivor, and Boy George has made it through some serious highs and lows to maintain his status as a style icon.

03: George Michael

Cmon George! You weren’t fooling anyone in that Club Tropicana video, we always knew you were one of us. He brought cottaging to the mainstream; that’s something to be proud of. And the singer is always getting himself in trouble with the police for his sex, drugs and disco lifestyle. Can’t wait to find out what the next episode will be in his car-crash life-story.

02: Elton John

He has to be the ultimate Mr Uber Gay. Look up Homosexual in the dictionary and will be a big smiling photo of the mad hatter. He’s been making music forever and is showing no signs of letting up plus he’s responsible for THE most tear-jerking song ever penned, so he’s bound to stay in our consciousness for a long while yet.

01: Ricky Martin

The hip swivelling Latin megastar has finally decided he’s playing for our team. So now, he’s out and proud, can you think of anyone else with the full package like our Ricky to be our top gay celeb?

For more information go to ibnlive.in.com

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Gay Fun: Japan’s Taste for Gay Anime

To me, it always feels like everything in Japanese culture is cool. Cool design, clothes, music, TV and even porn. Japanese meme, Yaranaika Guy, is the ultimate in gay manga cool, which has withstood the test of time, unlike other internet viral characters. He’s been around for years and I understand why; I do find it hard to resist that hunky character in a manly mechanics overalls, luring me with the way he asks; “Do you wanna do it?” his signature proposal. As cheesy a gay chat up line as it sounds, it works for me.

Yaranaika Guy comes from the Kuso Miso Technique images created by Junichi Yamagawa, who was responsible for starting one of Japan’s first gay mags back in the 80’s. Even though gay and transvestite celebrities were big on Japanese TV, Japanese media as a whole did not acknowledge serious topics affecting the gay community at that time, such as Aids and sexual health.

There’s an icon considered the live action version of Yaranaika Guy. Gay porn star Billy Herrington breathes life into the meme. You might have seen him in porn flicks like HotMenCoolBoyz, but now he pops up regularly in the Japanese cartoon style which has caused him become an internet sensation, affectionately referred to as “Aniki” meaning “Big Brother”. I’m guessing “big” is not just referring to his muscles!

At a recent Nico Nico Douga event inChiba,Japan, Herrington struck a pose on a real version of the famous and much-loved anime Saber Motorcycle.

Nico Nico Douga is the trendy Japanese video sharing site that can take some credit for helping Herrington achieve his meme status, by circulating video mash-ups by his fans. His followers can get their hands on their idol, by snapping up one of the action figure dolls and probably get into some crazy behaviour like getting tucked in bed with the toy at night while fantasising about the real thing! I think I’ll stick to my Billy Herington mouse mat thanks!

Gay Chat News: The Good, the Gay and the Ugly

Anne Hathaway – who is set to play Catwoman in the new Batman film next year – has spoken out about gay marriage. Being a New Jersey girl with a gay brother, she has called on her home state to follow New York’s lead. Quoted from Interview magazine, the Devil Wears Prada star said; “They need to get on the New York bandwagon and legalise gay marriage.” This is most prevalent as a lesbian was refused a wedding dress in New Jersey last week due to the fact she was marrying another woman.

A noted supporter of gay rights, the Hollywood star hopes other US States will follow suit. As well as her on-going support for gay rights, Hathaway has also recorded a video message for the It Gets Better campaign.

It isn’t very hard to understand why there is still so much prejudice and diversity inAmericawhen you think that there were still fifteen States that outlawed sodomy until 2003. Florida was one of those States and even though they still don’t accept it, they cannot legally enforce their own ruling on sodomy thanks to the government.

It’s strange to think of Florida clinging on to this law for so long, especially as the Sunshine State is home to a very large and diverse group of clusters such as Miami Beach, Key West, Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach and even Disney World. But it must say something about the mentality and tolerance of some of the heterosexual populous. In fact a once celebrated teacher of Social Studies has recently been suspended from teaching after making anti-gay comments on his personal FaceBook account. “I’m watching the news, eating dinner, when the story about New York Okaying same sex unions came on and I almost threw up. And now they showed two guys kissing after their announcement. If they want to call it a union, go ahead. But don’t insult a man and woman’s marriage by throwing it in the same cesspool as same-sex whatever! God will not be mocked. When did this sin become acceptable???”

I am a big believer in freedom of speech, but this man is a school teacher (for Social Studies… maybe he needs to go back to school himself!) He is shaping young people’s minds and how they will perceive the world as adults. Closed-minded and bigoted people should not be allowed to teach in schools (or be in government… yes, I do mean you Michelle Bachmann!)

For as long as I can remember, gay men have been banned from donating blood in the UK. This has always been a bone of contention and just another shocking blow for equality. To say gay men are at a higher risk is factually wrong. There is a higher infection rate of STIs with heterosexuals, homosexuals are more likely to get checked out at the clinic than their straight counterparts – and we get free condoms and lube in every gay bar and club. The gay community is now more savvy when it comes to STIs and probably more cautious ever since HIV/AIDS hit our community three decades ago.

A new petition is currently online calling for an end to the gay blood donation ban. We here at Gay Chat Towers signed it today and know that there is an evidence-based review underway with an announcement of any changes from the health association likely to be soon.

But this is not the first time a call on the ban has been incited. In 2008 an identical campaign was put forward (bloodban) and still hasn’t achieved its goal of 5000 signatures. This new petition has already reached almost that in a matter of weeks. Maybe people have now realised that this on-going saga is not just about equality, but about saving people’s lives.

My boyfriend, best friend and I were watching old music videos on YouTube at the weekend. Late at night and rather inebriated, we danced around as we watched Club Tropicana and couldn’t believe just howcamp George Michael and Andrew Ridgley look in that video. How did we not know about George back then? (Okay, we kinda guessed.) Even though they are both very flamboyant, they are still surrounded by and flirting with scantily-clad women. It’s a little unsettling to look back at now!

Since the break-up of 80s pop sensation Wham! George began a successful solo career that wasn’t even damaged by his very public, gay outing in 1998. The music video “Outside” which played homage to and glorified his cruising habits was seen by most as harmless fun – all except Marcelo Rodriguez of course, who was the officer that caught George in the LA public toilet.

George has done a lot for gay rights and HIV/Aids charities over the years. Being a close friend of Elton John who runs the Aids Foundation; together they have performed at money-raising galas and many charity gigs. But George has never really being known as a gay activist even though he has been out of the closet for thirteen years. In NME Magazine recently, George addressed this point by saying he plans to release a gay album to make up for “letting the gay kids down”.

It’s pegged to be a dance album and will be a collaboration with gay/gay friendly artists. “I’ll be 48 when the album comes out, but I have to say that gay men’s relationship with dance music probably doesn’t end at the same time as straight people’s does.” Ain’t that the truth George!

Terry Gee

Gay Chat News: The BBC to deliver primetime gay show… finally!

In 1999 writer Russell T Davis (now known for Doctor Who and Torchwood) engaged, shocked and transformed the nation with Queer as Folk. Later to be remade for the American audience, it was first shown in theUKon Channel 4. Queer as Folk was met by high praise and stark controversy in the British press – but with millions tuning in to see the show; Queer as Folk became a triumph of broadcasting and a great step forward for more queer characters.

In the US the previous year, NBC had started the first series of soon-to-be hit comedy Will and Grace; a high camp and hilarious show about a gay guy living with his (usually) single best girl friend.

The wheels had been set in motion by the late 90s for networks and TV stations to say yay to gay and provide the viewing populous an insight into a world that before had only ever been about death and despair. As the years went on, more pro-gay programming and countless gay characters in films, soap operas and documentaries were brought into people’s home all across the US and Europe. Even the once stuffy BBC have had many gay characters on prime time television but have never broadcast a show that was solely about homo life… until now!

To fill the void of the soon to finish Friday night show, My Family – the BBC are bringing together My Family’s Robert Lindsay and Harry Potter’s Uncle Vernon – AKA Richard Griffiths – as a quirky gay couple in a brand new sitcom announced this week. “It’s slightly less than conventional in terms of the family set up but it’s the 21 century and things move one” said one BBC insider.

The new show will start filming in autumn with the working title: George and Bernard Shaw. So far the BBC are only committing themselves to a pilot, but if this works there’s no reason the show couldn’t run for eleven years just like it’s predecessor My Family.

I’m trying to reserve judgement until I’ve seen the show, but I am unsure whether moving the main character from one primetime programme (where he plays a straight father and devoted husband) to being shacked up with another man in the same timeslot on the same channel is the right thing to do. You would think that the core viewing audience is going to be the same and how differently can Robert’s character really be at that time? Perhaps his character is leaving the onscreen marriage to Zoe Wannamaker, coming out as being a gay man to live with a guy… but I can’t see that happening. Who know though – many more extraordinary things have happened on TV shows; Dallas – it was all a dream, Cheers – the doctor is going to get his own more popular show and let’s not even get started on Twin Peaks?

It is great though that the BBC is bringing a gay sitcom to their primetime audience and I am looking forward to seeing George and Bernard Shaw when it airs next year. Both actors are well known, talented and naturally funny so I have no doubt that they will make a storming piece of entertaining television. Now it’s down to the writing and the audience figures to see if this is sustainable.

Terry Gee

The 56th Eurovision Song Contest – Dusseldorf 2011

We are now only days away from the competition final of the biggest music contest on the planet. But who will win? Blue say ‘I Can’ but who will be the real victor?

The atmosphere here at Gay Chat Towers is intense. As always I would like to see my favourite win, which this year isn’t the UK (again) – although I know a lot of other people who are routing for Blue. To understand the enormity and importance of this competition we first have to take a short trip back in time. The Second World War ended in 1945 andEuropewas still in pieces. Trying to reunite the people was a daunting and almost impossible task. Television was still in its infancy yet by the 1950s, TV was already becoming the main source to reach people on a global scale.

In 1955 the European Broadcasting Union came up with the idea of a European song competition televised across the lands. Just seven countries took park in the first show back in 1956: Italy, Belgium, Germany, France, Luxembourg, Switzerlandand The Netherlands. Can you imagine how strange it must have been for countries that had been at war? Killing each other in their thousands just ten years before and now, performing on stage together in a frivolous television programme. These people were true pioneers in uniting the Europe we know today.

The following year, Austria, The United Kingdom and Denmark joined with more following in the years to come, making up the 43 countries we have today.

Nowadays, The Eurovision Song Contest is the biggest competition of its kind, pulling in around 125 million viewers for the live final. It sometimes may come across as being camp and cheesy, but it is never offensive, is always good fun and (especially in the gay world) brings nations together in a celebration of song and dance. Don’t forget, this competition has made some of the world’s greatest pop stars including: Sandie Shaw, Bucks Fizz, Celine Dion and Abba.

This year, Blue are representing the United Kingdom, and after last year’s utter disaster (Pete Waterman – seriously!) the UK really needs to get into at least the top 10. With a well-known pop group and a catchy song, (which I personally think is far too twee and 90s boy band) it is looking very likely that they will be in the top 5 and even have a real shot at taking home first place. The UK hasn’t won the contest since 1997 and after coming last in 2010 we really need this. If we did win, our calendars are going to be pretty full next year as the UK is already hosting the Olympics, the Paralympics, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and World Pride.

2012 is looking to be a year of non-stop celebration… Bring it on!

Terry Gee

R.E.M. Star Outed as Gay (Again)

It’s not all Gaga and Kylie on heavy rotation here at gay chat Mecca, Maleforce. We love our rock bands too, especially if they are as fabulous as the mighty R.E.M.. Singer Michael Stipe & Co. have been delivering top-notch tuneage since way back in 1980, eventually hitting pay dirt with their fifth album “Document” and hit single “The One I Love”.

Since that time R.E.M have rocked on to become one of the world’s biggest bands, notching up several top 10 albums and releasing over 60 (yes, sixty!) singles, including mega-hits “Losing My Religion, “Shiny Happy People”, and the amazing “Everybody Hurts”.

But it hasn’t always been a shiny or happy ride for Stipe; rumours regarding his sexuality started circulating in the early 90s with unfounded reports that he was suffering from HIV. In 1994, with questions mounting over whether the gay rumours were true, Stipe outed himself as “an equal opportunity lech” saying he was attracted to both men and women.

It may seem a total non-story these days, but back in the eighties coming out wasn’t a walk in the park for a celebrity (or anyone for that matter). Elton John, Boy George, George Michael, to name but three, all remained schtum in regards to their sexual preferences at that time.

Stipe eventually declared himself a “queer artist” in Time magazine in 2001 announcing that he had been in a relationship with “an amazing man” for three years. He currently lives with his partner, artist Tom Dozel in New York.

In an interview with The Observer this week Stipe revealed how his sexuality led him to feelings of alienation at the height of his success: “I wasn’t troubled or confused, but I just felt there wasn’t a place for me.”

“For a time I was conflicted by how I was represented, and then AIDS came, and that’s an era that has still to be spoken about in depth by people of my age. It was a very difficult time to be honest and frank about one’s sexuality. And a very scary time for people like myself, who were not able to be tested anonymously without some concern.”

The new R.E.M album ‘Collapse Into Now’ is out now.

Gary Cosby

Gaga Targets Gay Discrimination

Lady Gaga has scored yet another hit for gay rights by persuading retail giant Target to reconsider its funding of anti-gay causes. In return for the rights to sell an exclusive edition of the singer’s new album Born This Way, Target has also agreed to start donating to gay charities.

In a meeting that Gaga describes as being “intense” the Poker Face singer took Target to task over its funding of causes that advocate discrimination against gay people.

Target has previously come under fire for a $150,000 donation it made to U.S. political action group MN Forward who supported high profile Republican nominee Tom Emmer in his bid for governor, Minnesota in 2010.

Emmer is on record as supporting a state constitutional amendment banning civil recognition of same-sex marriages or its legal equivalent. It has been reported that Emmer’s bid campaign included funding to fiercely anti-gay Christian youth ministry You Can Run But You Can’t Hide International.

Despite publicly apologising for the donation Target has continued to support causes branded questionable by gay rights activists. The company does however pay benefits to partners of gay employees and staff members have praised the firm as a gay-friendly employer.

Gaga’s deal with Target includes a special edition of her forthcoming CD release Born This Way, which includes extra tracks and remixes exclusively available from the discount retailer. In return Target has agreed to discontinue funding causes with anti-gay links and instead fund more gay charities.

In an interview with Billboard, the 24-year-old superstar said: “That discussion was one of the most intense conversations I’ve ever had in a business meeting. Part of my deal with target is that they have to start affiliating themselves with LGBT charity groups and begin to reform and make amends for the mistakes they’ve made in the past… Our relationship is hinged upon their reform in the company to support the gay community and to redeem the mistakes they’ve made supporting those [antigay] groups.”

Here at the Haus of Gay Chat we already think Gaga is God, and the Target deal yet another example of her continued commitment to gay rights. We highly recommend rushing out and buying her new album when it’s released worldwide in May. Go gays! Go Gaga!

Gary Cosby

Story Update March 9, 2011 The partnership between Lady Gaga and Target has dissolved. No official statement has been made, however it has been reported that the deal was ended by mutual agreement. GC

Gay Next Door: Darren Criss Hots Up Glee

Worldwide TV hit Glee has a new gay kid on the block: Blaine, played by swoonsome 24-year-old actor Darren Criss. Since his debut performance, Criss has become an overnight gay sensation. Not hard to see why! His amazing photo shoot and cover interview in the March edition of OUT magazine has got the gay chat team in a flap…

Ok, we adore Glee’s fierce gay diva Kurt; as far as gay characters on the box go he’s one gay we’re proud to have flying the flag. But it’s the dreamy Blaine that gays from Hackney to Hollywood are falling head over heels for. In an interview with OUT Darren Criss and Glee creator, Ryan Murphy talk about Glee and the importance of having gay characters like Blaine on TV.

Being straight and playing such a high profile gay role, Criss says he feels it’s important to show he’s absolutely at ease playing a gay character: “I think it’s more empowering to everybody, including myself, if I’m articulate about identifying myself as a straight male playing a gay character. Ultimately, that’s more powerful for both communities.”

Being raised in San Francisco and involved in musical theatre from an early age, Criss says he grew up surrounded by gay men, and feels the cool part about being involved in Glee is that he was “inadvertently raised by the gay community” – enhancing his role as America’s newest out and proud gay character.

The question on every gay Glee fan’s lips though is: will Blaine and Kurt get it on? They have to, don’t they?

Murphy teasingly remains tight lipped: “It’s my job as showrunner to keep them apart as long as possible. When that moment comes – if it comes – I want to treat that relationship like we treat all the other relationships on the show. I want it to be flawed and as exposed as everyone else’s.”

Read the full interview at OUT.com. The March 2011 print edition of OUT is out now.

Gary Cosby

Adam Levine Strips for Male Cancer Awareness

If there’s one thing we like better than a hot, tattooed rock star it’s a hot tattooed rock star naked! And even better if it’s for a good cause. We’re extremely happy to report that Maroon 5 fitty, Adam Levine, has been snapped naked to raise awareness about male cancer.

The photos, taken in support of Everyman – The UK’s leading prostate and testicular cancer campaign – appear in the February edition of Cosmopolitan magazine. Cosmopolitan UK has long been a supporter of the Everyman campaign, regularly featuring hot male celebrities in the buff.

Past centrefolds have included Lenny Kravitz, Ewan McGregor, Eminem and, the gay chat team’s personal favourite, Welsh rugby hunk Gavin Henson. Amazing!

Most importantly, Everyman’s mission is to stamp out testicular and prostate cancer. Launched in 1997, the charity seeks to raise awareness about male cancer and raise funds to research treatments. It runs a variety of campaigns, initiatives and adverts to remind men that regular self-examinations, and the early treatment of cancer are essential.

Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in young men aged 15-44. With treatment, it has an overall cure rate of 97%. The success rate is even higher if caught early enough – hence why awareness is key.

Prostate cancer kills one man every hour in the UK and has overtaken lung cancer as the most common cancer in men. Despite advances in research, little is known about what causes it or how it develops. We do know that the incidence of male cancer is rising rapidly, yet we don’t know why.

So it’s hats off to Adam for being the latest bit of buff to get his baubles out for the boys.

We’ve had a hot spot for the gorgeous Mr. Levine ever since “This Love” – a smash hit for his band Maroon 5 – way back in 2002! Since then, the group have gone on to sell millions of albums all over the world.

A staunch supporter of gay rights (can this guy get any more adorable?), he was one of the first celebrities to post a video to the “It Gets Better Campaign”. And in 2008 when asked by LGBT news magazine The Advocate as to what kind of guys he’d like if he were gay, he quipped: “Oh, there are beautiful men out there… every male secretly wants to have sex with Brad Pitt, but that’s a given.” What-a-tease!

To find out more about prostate and testicular cancer we recommend visiting:  http://www.everyman-campaign.org/

Maroon 5’s latest album “Hands All Over” is available on iTunes. The February edition of Cosmopolitan Magazine is out now.

Gary Cosby

Doctor Who Star Matt Smith Goes Gay in New BBC Drama

Captain Jack will be ever so pleased! Doctor Who star Matt Smith steps away from the Tardis to star as iconic gay writer Christopher Isherwood in a new BBC film. Christopher And His Kind, due to be screened on British TV later this month, is being hailed as the best gay film you’ll see this year.

Isherwood’s classic memoir is being brought to life courtesy of the BBC and it’s got the gay press, and not to mention our very own gay chat team buzzing. Why? Well, for starters it stars the phwoarsome Matt Smith as one our most beloved gay icons getting it on with a bevy of hot, brawny beefcake!

Said beefcake includes uber-hottie Douglas Booth – you might remember him playing Boy George in the excellent BBC 2010 drama Worried About The Boy. He also happens to be one of Burberry’s hottest models. In Christopher And His Kind Booth plays Heinz, Isherwood’s 17-year-old love interest.

The one-off drama, written by acclaimed playwright Kevin Elyot, chronicles Isherwood’s journey of self-discovery within the decadent world of pre-war Berlin, where he met and partied with the people who inspired his most famous characters.

It may be a complete coincidence, but not so strange that the star who plays our all time favourite time traveller should find himself transported into such a role. Doctor Who has a huge gay following and is scripted by Russell T. Davies, creator of Queer As Folk.

The hit TV series has included openly gay characters including the sexy bisexual Captain Jack (John Barrowman) and has been peppered with camp innuendo regularly over the years. It’s only since the show’s revival in 2005 however that the doctor became delectable. Prior to Smith, David Tenant and Christopher Eccleston upped the show’s fitty factor.

Fast becoming a gay heartthrob, British actor Smith told Gay Times that the gay scenes in Christopher And His Kind didn’t faze him at all, and quipped that he’d already kissed “lots of boys”.  He’s currently dating model Daisy Lowe.

Christopher Isherwood’s works have been adapted for film, televison and theatre – inspiring the multi academy award winning Cabaret, starring Liza Minelli – and more recently A Single Man for which Colin Firth won several Best Actor awards.

Gary Cosby