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March 2019

Remembering '30 Rock's' Gay Characters: Devon, and Jonathan, and D'Fwan - Oh My!


Jack and devon 30 rock


NBC's madcap sitcom 30 Rock aired for seven seasons (2006-2013) and won the Emmy for Best Sitcom in each of its first three seasons.  Starring Tina Fey and Alec Baldwin, the show's cast of characters were neurotic and quirky New Yorkers, all of whom worked on a weekly sketch-comedy show that was similar to SNL.  And like any worthwhile show, a number of its characters were gay.  There were three:  Devon Banks, who was a thorn in Donaghy's side (Donaghy was played to perfection by Baldwin); Jonathan, Jack's highly protective executive assistant; and gay stylist/reality star D'Fwan.  Jack was the alpha male and the three were often in a tizzy over him.


DEVON BANKS - Jack Donaghy's arch-nemesis (played by Will Arnett) was always trying to usurp Jack's leadership position at the NBC-like conglomerate. There was a lot of sexual tension between the two, and their fast-paced dialogue was full of hilarious double entendres (enhanced by Devon's breathy voice).  My favorite is when Devon, during a heated discussion, tells Jack that "you're going down" and Jack responds, "No, Devon, I don't do that".  Devon's partner's name was Cashmere (he was never seen).


Devon banks played by will arnett


JONATHAN - Jack's fiercely loyal executive assistant, who Devon once referred to as "that fancy little fellow".  He brought to mind Mr. Burns' second in command, Smithers, on The Simpsons.  Although he was usually shown in the background at his desk and had a few lines each episode, he had the most screen time of the three gay characters.  (He was played by openly-gay actor Maulik Pancholy).


Jonathan  jack donaghy's assistant on 30 rock

D'FWAN -  In the show's final season, D'Fwan became the star of his eponymous reality show (played by Titus Burgess, who later became well known for his role as Titus Andromedon on Netflix's The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt).  Convinced that Jack was closeted, D'fwan changed his mind when he saw him dance.


Dfwan 30 rock



KENNETH PARCELL - An NBC page from Georgia, he was more or less asexual, and is perhaps the 'Q' in LGBTQ (aka "questioning").  In one episode Jack used Kenneth to try to seduce Devon, who had a crush on Kenneth.


Kenneth 30 rock


COLEEN DONAGHY - Jack's hyper-critical, self-centered, mom was played by gay icon Elaine Stritch.  Another icon, Patti LuPone, appeared in one episode as the mother of one of the writers.


Elaine stritch 30 rock


LIZ LEMON (Tina Fey's character) - In one episode Liz, fed up with her poor track record with men, tried to be a lesbian but was rebuffed by one she had befriended.




GRETA JOHANSSEN - As played by SNL alum Rachel Dratch, Greta was an all-business cat wrangler who had a crush on Liz.


Rachel dratch 30 rock


Some TV Game Shows That Trigger My Gay Sensibilities

Devin goda price is right


Although my viewing of game shows is limited to the times when I'm visiting my mother, I find them mildly entertaining, especially The Price Is Right, Jeopardy, Let's Make a Deal and Wheel of Fortune.  Perhaps it's because they serve up a steady diet of eye candy, whether it's the on-screen "talent" or the contestants. It's a very different viewing environment from when I was a child.  Unlike the boyhood crushes I had on some of the actors from shows in primetime, hosts of game shows in the '60s and '70s were a rather bland lot, such as Jeopardy's Art Fleming, Dick Clark from The $20,000 Pyramid, Hugh Downs from Concentration, or The Match Game's Gene Rayburn.  (Let's Make a Deal's Monty Hall was the closest to being a bit cute.) 


Art fleming _jeopardy
Art Fleming


So what is it about the game shows I watch, that arouse my gay sensibilities?  Read on ...


LET'S MAKE A DEAL - Of the four shows, Deal's host Wayne Brady is the sexiest (with or without eyeglasses).  As for the rest of the show, I have no interest.


Wayne brady let's make a deal


THE PRICE IS RIGHT - In the fall of 2012 the show began featuring male showcase models.  The ones I've seen are Rob, James and Devin.  Occasionally they appear bare chested, but even fully clothed they're a pleasure to ogle.  I also like host Drew Carey, who's good-natured and cute in a stocky way, a LEGO™ character come to life.  I'm also dazzled by the colorful sets.  Lastly, the show has a lot of cute male contestants as well, some who are busting out of their t-shirts as they jump around.  And it's not uncommon to hear them shouting out to boyfriends and husbands.  (And when this is happening on a show as main stream as this, there's no going back.)


Price is right male model james
Price is Right model James


Price is Right Stud
Eye-candy contestant (sexual orientation unknown


Sexual orientation known as Anthony said hello to his boyfriend in the audience.


JEOPARDY - Has had its shares of gay contestants (or brainy types that give off a gay vibe) but they're usually not dressed that well, and can be a bit full of themselves (this applies to the straight contestants as well).  And despite aging, host Alex Trebek has always possessed a bit of sex appeal (although, befitting a show that celebrates book knowledge, he's a bit aloof).


Gay contestant John Presloid (Jan. 2019)


WHEEL OF FORTUNE - This one's all about Vanna.  Letter turner Vanna White is somewhat of a campy delight in her Cher-like gowns - and still looks amazing after nearly 40 years on the job.  Additionally, in episodes I've watched in the past 12 months, three contestants were members of San Francisco's Gay Men's Chorus.  As for the rest of the show, the host (rodent-like host Pat Sajak) and the contestants are sort of a sad lot, shouting out "Big Money!" as they spin the wheel.


Vanna white