The political hit drama, Madam Secretary, is in its third season, and in its penultimate episode last Sunday, it tackled the LGBT issue of bisexuality, biphobia and coming out. Earlier in the episode, the US Secretary of State, Elizabeth McCord (played by Téa Leoni) travels abroad with her team on yet another international event involving Rome and the United States.
When they get there, we are allowed a rare peak into the personal story of the secretary’s executive assistant, Blake Moran (played by Erich Bergen) – a personal story that comes with an ex boyfriend!
I honestly think I would have been more shocked if the scathing, dedicated, always nattily-dressed Blake's ex had been a woman. I never really considered the possibility that he could be bisexual; I just assumed that he was gay. And it would appear that he is used to suffering the brunt of biphobia, as evidenced in the conversation he has with his ex, Trevor, where the ex makes a scoffing remark: “Oh Blake, you're not still on that Bi thing...” To which Blake responds, “It's not a thing I am on. It's who I am.”
Having Blake out himself as bisexual in the end was a bold and powerful move. I loved his disclosure to Elizabeth. Blake may be friends with the rest of the team, but his relationship with Elizabeth is special.
Check out Blake’s moving monologue as he comes out as bisexual to his boss:
“I'm Bi, ma'am. Bisexual. I know, you're probably like ‘What? Why is he telling me this now?’ And I can't say for certain, but it definitely has to do with an old boyfriend who can be kind of a jerk but makes good points.
“One of them is about what I always considered my right to privacy. ... But I realize now that my right to privacy is different than me choosing to be private, and really has more to do with trusting people with my private business – which is hard for me because I've experienced a lot of weird biphobia from everyone, straight people, gay people.
“And not that I think you're biphobic or homophobic or phobic about anything. It's just that I've gotten used to keeping people at arm's length ... I've never felt the obligation to satisfy anybody's curiosity by posting pictures of me with the boyfriend or girlfriend on social media like every other millennial.
“And I always justify that by thinking: ‘What does it matter about me?’ I mean, there's so many more important things going on in the world! I mean, who cares about my sexuality!
“But I realize now that maybe it's kind of the opposite – that if I can't be honest with people about who I am, then how can I ever have an honest experience with them?”
And Elizabeth's response to him was perfect. She's two for two in handling disclosures about their personal lives with flawless grace and empathy.
Madam Secretary will air its season finale this coming Sunday, May 21.
Check on the video of Blake’s coming out below: