Young & Restless’ Christian Jules LeBlanc Unpacks the Baggage of Homophobia: ‘I Still Live With the Legacy of That as a Gay Man’
The June 20 episode of State of Mind couldn’t have been better timed for Pride month.
The Young and the Restless’ Christian Jules LeBlanc (Michael) clearly knew when he agreed to be a guest on State of Mind, the mental-health vlog hosted by General Hospital star Maurice Benard (Sonny), that absolute candor would be called for. In fact, at one point during the Emmy winners’ conversation, LeBlanc noted that even just as actors, “our job is to… be so honest about mental health, about sexual preference, about the things you don’t hear in history books… ”
So after joking about their first meeting (watching Daytime Emmy Outstanding Lead Actress reels that left Benard banging his head against the wall) and comparing their ages (“I’m 63, so you’re a tiny tyke to me,” LeBlanc cracked), they got serious. Like, deadly serious.
LeBlanc discussed his brother, who succumbed to AIDS at just 25 years old, and lamented the fact that “in the regular rhythm of education, we are not exposed to so many things that are the main force driving some people. So, therefore, we are pretty much in a bubble with the people who are driven by the same things.”
What that can lead to is… if you are different, if your feelings don’t conform… “then you think that you are just the bizarre one,” LeBlanc said. Hell, “not till after Stonewall did anyone take a gay man serious. [The general consensus was that] they were sick people.
“I still live with the legacy of that as a gay man,” he added. The ramifications of that? “I still don’t hold my husband’s hand of 28 years in public. Can’t do it.”
In part, that’s because LeBlanc and his significant other are “not big PDA people. But part of it is like… ”
Yeah, we get it. Sadly, maybe. But we do.
What do you think? Wouldn’t you like for LeBlanc to feel as free in expressing affection for his mate as, say, former co-star Justin Hartley (ex-Adam) and his third wife? After watching LeBlanc’s interview in full, share your thoughts in the comment section (and read what other fans’ reactions are here).
Then, before you head off to read another story, check out our Dream Daytime Emmy nominations — and winners! — via the gallery below. No, we’re not talking Best Actor or Best Writing but rather, categories such as Best Slap and Outstanding Use of Cheap Jewelry.
Video: YouTube/State of Mind
<p>When <em>Young & Restless</em>‘ Elena slept with Nate and Devon in short order, we had absolutely no doubt that <a href="https://soaps.sheknows.com/the-young-and-the-restless/news/591179/young-restless-will-elena-cheating-lead-scandalous-pregnancy/" target="_blank">she’d wind up pregnant</a>. After all, we’ve seen a few soaps in our time. But in the most shocking non-twist of all time, the show wisely avoided a “Who’s the daddy?” storyline, instead opting to let the complex emotions at play carry the drama. </p>
<p>We’re not sure exactly why <em>Days of Our Lives’ </em>Eve and Vincent thought Ben needed to be stripped to his skivvies in order for their brainwashing efforts to work, but who are we to question their methods? The results speak for themselves. Also, the results say, “Wowza.”</p>
<p>The only thing more shocking than how quickly <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>‘s Steffy got addicted to pain pills? The moment when the fashionista went and pulled a knife on the family members who wanted nothing more than to help get her into treatment. This was the knife’s big break, having previously only appeared in a production of <em>Clue </em>so far off Broadway that it was in Tennessee.</p>
<p>While we never actually saw the ceremonies which united <em>General Hospital</em> supervixen Nelle to first Shiloh and then, a few months later, Julian, we’re pretty sure the first dance at both was to the tune of “What’s Love Got To Do With It?” </p>
<p><em>Young & Restless</em>’ Jill easily walked away with this one, also known as the Mother Knows Best Award, by forcing Lily and Billy to work together at Chancellor Communications. Sure, she said her goal was to have Lily rein in Billy’s more destructive tendencies, but we all know she was also matchmaking. </p>
<p>It was the smack heard ’round the world and the quip quoted ’round the twitterverse. After <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>’s Brooke struck rival Shauna, Quinn returned the favor by hitting her nemesis so hard, it literally knocked the blonde off her feet. “Stephanie taught you to slap? Bitch, you should have learned that from me!” Had Stephanie’s portrait still been hanging above the fireplace, it definitely would have cracked a smile. </p>
<p>Although <em>General Hospital </em>spent a whole lotta time trying to convince us Nina’s half-heart necklace was both valuable and unique, we’re pretty sure a whole army of 12-year-old girls who split the same piece of jewelry with their BFFs could attest otherwise. </p>
<p>The rivalry between <em>Young & Restless</em>‘ Theo and Kyle was as pointless as it was destructive, making both characters wildly unlikable. Worse, it would ultimately result in Tyler Johnson’s Theo being exiled despite being made a newly-minted member of the Abbott family. (Mind you, if we had our way, <a href="https://soaps.sheknows.com/the-young-and-the-restless/news/583339/young-restless-theo-tyler-johnson-cross-over-bold-beautiful/">the character would soon turn up here</a>.)</p>
<p>Seemingly minutes after being sworn to secrecy by <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>‘s Sally, Katie was telling anyone who’d listen about the redhead’s supposedly fatal diagnosis. Not since the infamous ride of Paul Revere has news spread so quickly.</p>
<p>“Stevano” — aka <em>Days of Our Lives’ </em>Stefano as Steve (or vice-versa… don’t ask) — thought he’d finally won over the object of his obsession, Marlena, only to find out that he was actually making out with her double, Hattie! </p>
<p>Not since Lucy Coe proved pigtails never go out of style has a <em>General Hospital </em>character’s mane been so noteworthy. For a while, we thought perhaps if Cyrus let his hair down, he’d be more chill. Unfortunately, when eventually he did, it led to gunshots and hostage-taking! </p>
<p>Somehow, <em>The Young and the Restless’</em> Nick and Phyllis managed to convince themselves that they were just pals for a fairly long time… even when they became the kind of friends who have benefits. Lots and lots of benefits. They may have been surprised to realize they’d fallen back in love, but we’d seen it coming from a mile away. </p>
<p>Kidnapped by rival Sally, <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>‘s Flo reached out to beau Wyatt by writing a message on her unconscious rival’s panties. When the redhead attempted to seduce her ex in an effort to get pregnant, she exposed herself… and not in the way she’d planned! </p>
<p>Sure, it turned out <em>Days of Our Lives’ </em>Gabi was wrong in thinking that scruffy mechanic Jake was her back-from-the-dead billionaire ex, Stefan. But on the plus side, he turned out to be Stefan’s secret twin… and thus, still a very rich, very handsome DiMera! </p>
<p>When illness prevented Emma Samms from returning to <em>General Hospital </em>as planned, quick thinking and a jerry-rigged camera clued viewers in to the fact that Holly Sutton was not dead, as rumored, but being held hostage. The single image — and <a href="https://soaps.sheknows.com/general-hospital/news/578716/general-hospital-who-kidnapped-holly-suspects-photos/">the many question it raised</a> — has haunted us ever since! </p>
<p>When illness sidelined Donny Boaz just as <em>Young & Restless’ </em>Chance and Abby were set to tie the knot, Justin Gaston — aka the spouse of Melissa Ordway — stepped in to fake-marry his actual wife. </p>
<p>It’s not that the digital picture frame <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>‘s Ridge presented to Brooke was so clearly going to wind up showing the worst possible image so much as that he acted as if the cheap device used by every grandparent on the planet was some cutting-edge contraption from the far-flung future. </p>
<p>It would be an understatement to say that <em>Days of Our Lives’ </em>John did not appreciate the cactus Sami brought him as a get-well gift. After hurling it at the wall, he spat, “Leave it to you to bring in a plant that doesn’t need any care. That’s how you treat people, anyway — you think they can survive on nothing. But you, on the other hand… you need all the love and attention because you’re so special. Do you have any idea how sick I am of you?” Guess Hallmark doesn’t make a card that expresses that! </p>
<p>Perhaps the greatest thing to come out of the sucktacular year that was 2020? <em>Bold & Beautiful</em>‘s mannequin story. Had safety protocols not called for actors to occasionally play opposite literal dummies, we’d likely never have gotten what proved to be <a href="https://soaps.sheknows.com/the-bold-and-the-beautiful/news/583461/bold-beautiful-thomas-mannequin-story-genius-why/" target="_blank">the most creative story to hit soaps in ages</a>, that of Thomas’ infatuation with Hope lookalike Fauxpe.</p>
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