Camile Wray rules Stargate Universe
I was more than a little concerned when I heard Ming Na's character Camile Wray on Stargate Universe was going to be a lesbian. The instant homophobic reaction was not a surprise but the way SGU handles not only her character but the topic of sexuality in general is fascinating.
Sexuality on SGU
The Destiny is millions or billions of light years from Earth, so the crew has to use the Ancient Communication Stones to talk to their loved ones. As a result, the crew are not in their own bodies. This raises some interesting questions about fidelity, since one of those intimate encounters lead to an affair between Everett Young's estranged wife and Colonel David Telford (whose body he used).
But as she always does, Ming Na's Camile steals the show. Her relationship is one of the realist and most touching on the series thus far. I can only assume this is a result of the acting and the fact the writers knew everything Camile does would be scrutinized by people like me.
Camile Wray is probably one of the best written GLBT characters on TV since Queer as Folk or Buffy the Vampire Slayer went off the air.
Camile's World View
Camile like so many of my GLBT sisters and brothers has a skepticism about anything people say in front of her, and she doesn't feel included in the heterocentric world she finds herself trapped in.
She has learned how to stand up for herself and follow the path she believes is best, not the path given to her.
Camile will not be excluded
I am not sure if it was intentional or just the lucky happenstance of plot, but Camile's main struggle on the Destiny is to make sure her voice is not only heard but respected. This is a struggle not unfamiliar to the GLBT community. We are used to being patted on the head like a good pet and ignored when the time comes.
The IOA may have introduced a request that will make this internal fight and overt one when they asked Camile to insinuate herself as the voice of authority on the Destiny.
This is something that would have happened whether or not the IOA asked. Young is a weak, ineffective, and compromised leader. Sooner or later, someone would have risen up to fill the void. That would have been either Camile or Rush, but with him out of the picture, Camile's only real rival is Eli unless Yong really steps it up,
Finally someone like me
I am so excited to finally see someone like me in a Scifi show. One good GLBT character is a start. (I know some of you probably just screamed out Sam Adama from Caprica... but that is another post)
Camile Wray is the character to watch on SGU. I expect to see her try to win Eli over to her camp soon, and set everything in motion for the crew to see her as the rightful leader of the Destiny. She is the kingmaker, she might even get Young to see her as his best choice to build morale among the crew. She has something to lose if she doesn't get home, and she will focus on that goal and find a way to make it happen.