Remember the Babadook, the titular character from that kitschy horror film who ended up becoming a pseudo-gay icon after a little Netflix category mishap? He might’ve earned that title after all because just like every other jaded queen, his creator claims he’s just “trying to stay relevant.”
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Aussie filmmaker Jennifer Kent, who directed The Babadook all the way back in 2014, said she’s still trying to understand the character’s explosion into the public eye—and his crowning as a veritable gay icon.
“I’m still trying to work that one out,” Kent told EW. “I feel it’s really quite beautiful, but I still have no idea why.” (She then paused and added, “I mean, I kind of do.”)
my new favorite Tumblr meme is insisting that The Babadook is gay pic.twitter.com/Id1PJpkkgX
— Ryan Broderick (@broderick) February 15, 2017
Although it was unclear whether Netflix ever actually mislabeled The Babadook as an LGBTQ film or if the
damning evidence screenshot receipts were doctored, the streaming service ended up promoting the film during Pride Month in 2017.
8. the babadook is my favorite lgbt movie pic.twitter.com/dxCtyf9Kib
— moved (@xiumyeri) May 31, 2017
The character’s popularity among queer fans inspired Pride-themed Babadook merch and costumes. In the United States, Shout Factory and IFC Midnight even released a limited edition Pride-themed Babadook Blu-ray. (Don’t worry, he wasn’t totally capitalizing on your rainbow dollars: All of the proceeds from those sales went to the Los Angeles LGBT Center.)
“I guess he’s an outsider of sorts,” Kent added to EW. “It’s funny. It’s charming, I think, that the gay community has latched onto it. It’s really sweet. He’s trying to prolong his life, he’s trying to stay relevant.”
Same, gurl. Same.