Yuri!!! on Ice finally returns

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Four years after the first season premiered, the beloved gay anime Yuri!!! on Ice has confirmed a follow-up movie with a brand new teaser trailer.

The original anime followed the story of Yuri Katsuki, a shamed professional figure skater who, after a disastrous Grand Prix Final, returns to his hometown and rethinks his career. Seemingly out of nowhere, five-time World Champion Victor Nikiforov agrees to coach Yuri and the two strike up a whirlwind romance amidst the tense figure skating competition.

The stunning animation and groundbreaking queer storyline garnered the series a massive and loyal fanbase around the world.

The team behind season one originally announced a Yuri!!! on Ice film entitled Ice Adolescence was coming in 2017 alongside an image of Victor Nikiforov bundled up in the Russian winter with his dog Makkachin, but radio silence since has dashed the hopes of many fans.

Their statement reads:

“The production of YURI!!! on ICE the movie: ICE ADOLESCENCE is still ongoing with the aim of further enriching the film. However, we have not yet reached the stage where we can announce the release date.

Our team will continue to work diligently to deliver a film and share our unwavering love and dedication for skating. We deeply apologize to all fans for the circumstance and ask for your generous understanding.”

Take Me To Prom

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Depicted in so many movies and tv shows, prom is an important rite of passage in North America. Marking the end of high school and the start of a new life chapter, while lots impatiently plan for it months in advance, others can be less enthusiastic or even decide not to go.

Ultimately, whether you go or don’t, everyone has a story centred around this end of year dance and in Take Me To Prom, director Andrew Moir asks seven adults of the LGBTQ+ community, from seven different decades, to recount their prom night. With a very intimate approach, all seven subjects share their moving stories, their tales of resilience.


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Through his struggle with gender identity, a young boy stands up for himself and embarks on a difficult journey of self – discovery and contentment.

Same blood: Let the Right One In and young queerness

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Oskar, the pre-pubescent protagonist of Let the Right One In, is about as pale as the snow that blankets the frigid landscape around him in Stockholm, Sweden. His hair is technically blonde, but looks so drained of its color it might as well be just as frosted as his skin. He’s emaciated, seemingly all skin and bone with no muscle to be found. His lips look like faint, thin grey lines on his face. He is, most importantly, androgynous looking.

All of these elements that make of Oskar’s character, not to mention his slight personality, so timid and naïve, are enough to give the bullies at his school reason enough to violently harass him. Even at the tender age of 12, the roles in this society are set: if one does not demonstrate the perceived standard for masculinity (or, conversely, femininity, such as in Carrie), one is immediately ostracized. It’s nothing new. Oh, and Oskar just might be a young person in search of his queer identity.

Then, it seems almost too perfect a framework to use the vampire story (film or otherwise) as a way to examine adolescence. What’s interesting about vampirism and vampires are they are the monster that can best represent a multitude of ideas: The pain of immortality (and mortality), the cruelty of adolescence, the seductive quality of lust and sexuality, and loneliness. Tomas Alfredson’s 2008 film Let the Right One In (Låt den Rätte Komma In), based on the novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist, wraps the many themes into one, but keys into the romanticism of the vampire with an adolescent and queer edge.

The vampire has an extended history as a symbol or representation or image of queerness. There was the countess Elizabeth Bathory, infamous for allegedly bathing in the blood of her young mistresses as a way to preserve her youth. There was the story “Carmilla” by J. Sheridan LeFanu published in 1871 about a lesbian vampire.

And, while the queer content isn’t necessarily explicit, Bram Stoker’s seminal Dracula nonetheless flows with queer subtext, notably Count Dracula’s mistresses. (This subtext was basically made text in Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula, in which the vampire mistresses appear to be lascivious and bisexual.) In film, there was 1936’s Dracula’s Daughter and, certainly, The Hunger in 1983 (starring queer icon David Bowie).

But all of these examples involve adults. Vampires, by nature, are heavy in exploring sexuality, but it appears to be difficult to do that with younger characters. It’s difficult to explore the sexuality of younger characters in general, because there ends up being a fine line between examination of such and exploitation or sexualization. Which brings us to Let the Right One In.

Read on…


Lasting Marks

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The story of sixteen men put on trial for sadomasochism in the dying days of Thatcher’s Britain was told by the police, the prosecution and the tabloid press — but not by those in the dock.

Lasting Marks is the story of a group of men, brought together through their shared sexual desires, and the vice investigation (named ‘Operation Spanner’) that followed when the police acquired a video tape of these acts being performed, Lyne delves into a somewhat forgotten, historic case in this informative and engaging film.

Call Me By Your Name director will create queer coming-of-age show

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Luca Guadagnino, the director of Call Me By Your Name is looking to bring his work to television for a change. Observer is reporting that Guadagnino is working on a queer coming-of-age series, directing the first two episodes (at least) and writing scripts with a pair of co-writers. The series has the tentative title We Are Who We Are and is set in Italy. The show centres on Fraser and Caitlin, a pair of teenagers discovering themselves while living on a military base.

One detail from this report stands out: “Fraser is actually missing his friend from home, Mark, while also developing an innocent romantic connection with an older soldier named Jason.” While that’s not exactly a Call Me By Your Name redux, it does seem like there might be some thematic connection between Guadagnino’s highest-profile film to date and his biggest TV foray yet.

Star Trek’s first Gay Kiss

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Star Trek: Discovery is boldly going where no other Star Trek series has gone before. Last month the space drama introduced Anthony Rapp’s character, Lt. Stamets, as the first openly gay character in the television history of the franchise. But the show took things a step further this week by featuring a same-sex kiss between Stamets and his partner, Dr Hugh Culber, played by fellow out actor Wilson Cruz.

The franchise has been known for pushing boundaries since it first aired in 1966, and came under fire in the late ’60s for featuring an interracial kiss between the characters Kirk and Uhura.

Despite being known as groundbreaking, the episode still faced homophobic criticism from fans who don’t like seeing a happy gay couple on their TVs. But Cruz had a response for anyone who had a problem with Discovery’s queer representation.

“I’m not here for your comfort,” he wrote in a poignant Facebook post. “That’s not why we are here. We’re here to grow.”

Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu was portrayed as a married gay man by actor John Cho in the film Star Trek: Beyond, but a scene rumored to show a kiss between Sulu and his husband was ultimately cut from the film.

Yuri!!! on ICE

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The story of Yuri!!! on ICE revolves around Yuri Katsuki, who carried all of Japan’s hopes on his shoulders to win at the Gran Prix Finale figure skating competition, but suffered a crushing defeat. He returns home to Kyushu and half feels like he wants to retire, and half feels like he wants to continue ice skating.

With those mixed feelings swirling inside him, he confines himself inside his parents house. Suddenly the five-time consecutive world championship ice skater Viktor Nikiforov appears before him, and along with him is Yuri Plisetsky, a young Russian figure skater who is already defeating his seniors. Viktor and both Yuris take up the challenge on an unprecedented Gran Prix series.

Yuri is a young figure skater considering retirement after he plummeted from world championship level to failing to qualify at nationals over the course of a single season. He goes home for the first time in five years in poor physical and emotional condition, reconnecting with his family and trying to reconnect with his love of skating – not realising everything is about to change.


We often get sports anime at the start of an athlete’s career. Picking up with elementary school Yuri as he first discovers skates then comes to surpass his friends, or middle school Yuri struggling to balance training for regional competitions with studying for high school entrance exams, or high school Yuri working his way up to his first national championship – any of these would have made for a solid anime. Instead, we meet Yuri when he is 23, at a crossroads and in a state of doubt. To the people of his no-name hometown he is a proud success, but to other skating professionals he is a failure; he is aware of both opinions, and they are equally painful to him. To start an anime with this kind of everyday, relatable complexity is pretty rare, and it is handled expertly.

The storytelling works by gently layering multiple elements, characters and settings to build up a world in which a story happens rather than spoon-feeding information to the audience. Throwaway comments in normal conversations hint at reasons why Yuri might have stayed away for five years, or what he sacrificed by leaving. There is occasional exposition given in voiceover or through SD imagery, but it is quick and lightly handled. As a general rule, the animation is used to convey both character details and set an atmosphere, supporting and elevating the storytelling, which is strong and sophisticated to begin with. The script sets up and subverts expectations, making a fairly slow-paced drama less predictable and even more satisfying to watch.


Despite frequent use of cartoony facial expressions and visual gags, Yuri’s world is one of the most grounded of the season. His world is full of people who feel like people, not archetypes, with full lives which continue outside Yuri’s view. There are female characters of different ages, all with individual personalities, styles and mannerisms, none of whom are sexualised.


This episode gives a lot of information on story, backstory and characters in this episode, but its focus is tight: Yuri is in a slump and needs to find a way out of it. To add stakes and complications, his idol, exceptional Russian skater Victor, has no idea who he is. His idol’s younger teammate told Yuri in no uncertain terms that he should retire, but Yuri knows that if he retires he will never get another chance to skate on the same ice as Victor. However, his performance has dropped so dramatically he may be forced into retirement anyway simply by failing to qualify for anything. Also, didn’t he love this once? What happened?

Review by Anime Feminist