Grey's Anatomy Gender-Bender Agenda: This Week, a Lesbian Kiss

Last week it was a kiss between two male soldiers.  This week, two female doctors.

At the end of last night's episode of Grey's Anatomy, ABC's medical drama in which the main characters routinely play musical beds, Dr. Erica Hahn leaned over and planted a kiss on Dr. Callie Torres.  The kiss is played as a means to arouse a fellow male doctor, but Dr. Torres is obviously left with some conflicting feelings about it.

The question on fans' minds is whether this was just a tease for the male doctor or is there something more between Dr. Callie Torres and Dr. Erica Hahn.

Culture warriors are asking, did this kiss occur because writers think it's compelling entertainment, or are they pushing a social agenda?  

Sara Ramirez, the actress who plays Callie Torres, answered the question during her May 14 appearance on The View.  When The View's Elisabeth Hasselbeck asked her if she would like her character to “switch teams and go for the lady,” Ramirez said:

I think that Grey's Anatomy is a revolutionary show in terms of its casting and in terms a lot of the universal truths in the relationships, the various relationships. And if Shonda Rhimes [the show's creator] decides to expand that even further and expand our homophobic horizons, then I think it would be great.

Rhimes certainly seems to be trying to “expand our homophobic horizons.” Last week's episode featured a kiss between two male soldiers.  An episode from a couple weeks ago treated sexual orientation as a complete non-issue when another character matter-of-factly asked if Torres and Hahn were a couple, which set up the “are they or aren't they” suspense that culminated in last night's kiss.

Grey's Anatomy won the 2007 Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation Media Award for Outstanding Individual Episode for “Where the Boys Are,” an episode that touched on the topic of homosexuals having children and included a story line in which a married man decided to become a woman through gender reassignment therapy.