Monday, February 26, 2024

Workplace Comedy Grosse Misconduct Centers LGBTQ+ Actors, Characters

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Sometimes, there’s nothing quite so relatable as a workplace comedy. We’ve all been the awkward person at the party, or had that weird interaction with our boss (okay, maybe not that extreme), or been the one to have to teach Kevin from sales how to use the printer for the umpteenth time. Jesus, Kevin. This isn’t that hard! (insert twss joke here)

Unfortunately, a lot of television workplace comedies lack the diversity of our workplaces when it comes to queer representation. It’s as if Hollywood doesn’t think LGBTQ+ folk work normal jobs. Either that or the one LGBT character present is a walking stereotype, or worse, a punchline.

Enter Grosse Misconduct, a six-part queer digital webseries and workplace comedy that veers from the dramatic to the absurd and features not one, but two leading LGBTQ+ characters. Created by out actor Colby Ryan and co-written with his writing partner, Anne Schroeder, Grosse Misconduct depicts an eccentric Human Resources team as they navigate personal and professional struggles under the leadership of their high-maintenance director, Mitch Grosse. Now, I’ve never worked in Human Resources, by one of my good friends has and when I showed the teasers to her, she about died with how real it felt.

Grosse Misconduct also stars Iranian American transgender actress and activist Pooya Mohseni as Alicia Castile, Anne Schroeder a Sarah Wilson, Steve Barkman as Brian Lambert, and Colby Ryan as Mitch Grosse. The series was released in May, a few days ahead of Ryan Murphy’s groundbreaking series Pose and was, in part, inspired by it.

From let to right: Sarah Wilson, Steve Barkman as Brian Lambert, Pooya Mohseni as Alicia Castile, and Colby Ryan as Mitch Grosse.

What’s so engaging to me about the series is that, as a workplace comedy, it offers a refreshing and very much welcome perspective on queer life and experience. If you’ve been looking for a show that bypasses traditional coming out stories and struggles over gender identity—both valid and necessary stories to tell, of course—Grosse Misconduct is for you. The characters are allowed to be people first, just like everyone else. Their gender and/or sexual orientation isn’t the sum total of their characterization. The characters live, love, work, argue, celebrate successes, and deal with failures just like everyone else.

That’s what makes workplace comedies so relatable to so many people. Because we’ve all been there. No matter what industry, job, boss, or office it is; we get it. What sets Grosse Misconduct apart is that multiple of the relatable characters are queer.

About time.

More information about Gross Misconduct, including all six episodes, is available on the website. Please give it a watch, I highly recommend it!


Images Courtesy of Clownfish Productions

Author

  • Gretchen

    Bi/pan, they/them. Gretchen is a Managing Editor for the Fandomentals. An unabashed academic book nerd and aspiring sci/fi and fantasy author, they have about things like media, representation, and ethics in storytelling.

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