Ew, Comedy Central India! It’s 2020, We Can Handle Two Men Kissing on Schitt’s Creek

Pop Culture

Ew, Comedy Central India! It’s 2020, We Can Handle Two Men Kissing on Schitt’s Creek

Illustration: Reynold Mascarenhas

Canadian TV show Schitt’s Creek has had quite the year. At the 2020 Emmy’s, it picked up nine awards for its sixth and final season, more than any other comedy in history. As a result, it has gained immense popularity around the world, including back home in India.

A promotional video recently put out by Comedy Central India, urging Indians to watch the show, however, ended up catching the ire of the show’s co-creator and star Dan Levy on Wednesday. The actor took to Twitter to call the channel out for cutting out a scene that showed two men kissing from its 2019 promo.

He noted, much like many others on Twitter, that the scenes that showed men and women kissing were left untouched.

The snippet shared by Comedy Central India was excerpted from an episode in Season 5, “Housewarming”. In it, characters David Rose (played by Levy) and Ted (Dustin Milligan) shared a kiss during a game of “spin the bottle”. The decision to remove this kiss from the clip didn’t go down too well with Levy, who is a prominent LGBTQ rights activist.

“This show is about the power of inclusivity,” Levy explained on Twitter, using the hashtag “loveislove”. “The censorship of gay intimacy is making a harmful statement against that message.”

This call-out received a lot of support back home, as several Indians noted that the recent ruling legalising homosexuality in our country, clearly hadn’t done much to change the general attitude of people toward same-sex couples and relationships.

Comedy Central later defended itself in the statement, saying the kiss wasn’t cut out from the actual episode, but only the promotional post. “A lingering, close up and passionate kiss shown during child viewing hours on channels in India may lead to content-related issues regardless of whether the kiss was between a man and a woman, a woman and a woman or between man and man,” Huffington Post quoted a representative as saying.

But the fact that it only decided to cut out the scene in which two men kiss essentially ensured that this argument would find very few takers. Plus given our television channels’ enthusiasm for censoring words that don’t need censoring — swapping out the word “breast” for “chest”, for instance — doesn’t help matters.

It’s 2020, CC India, time to grow up. We can handle a kiss.