A&E wages war on marriage equality


by Tommy Rocco

“Wedding Wars,” an A&E original comedy directed by Jim Fall ("Trick", "The Lizzie McGuire Movie"), tells the story of Shel (John Stamos), an average event planner who happens to be gay. When Shel begins planning the wedding of his brother Ben (Eric Dane), he is thrown into a whirlwind of passion and politics, becoming the poster boy for equal rights and gay marriage.

At the heart of “Wedding Wars” there lies not only the struggle for marriage equality, but also a struggle between families and their differences of opinion, lovers and their romantic struggles, and individuals and their own internal struggles. For anyone who has ever struggled in their beliefs, this film is for you.

Shel begins planning his brother’s wedding, and his brother happens to be the speech writer for the current governor of Maine. When Shel listens to a speech given by the governor that his brother wrote about conserving the sanctity of marriage between men and women only, Shel decides to go on strike. When word gets out more and more gay people begin to go on strike too, leaving the straight world pretty much out of luck. It comes as a shock to some of the straight characters that gay people are, in fact, more than just hairdressers and choreographers.

One thing that truly stuck out was the fact that Stamos’ character was not even necessarily a political character. He was an average guy who was confronted with hypocrisy and inequality, and it is his human reaction to that hypocrisy that makes him a believable character. He was not a gay activist or a militant defender of good, but an everyday citizen who took a stand. Many will relate to his character because his triumphant actions, hopefully, are a reflection of how any of us would have reacted in the same situation. 

With the recent “yes” vote on 1, it is more important than ever to see this film. It is not only funny but inspiring and uplifting, the kind of film that will be remembered when marriage is finally equal. It is important for people to see this film, gay and beyond!

So, “Wedding Wars” is political as well as sweet. One more thing worth mentioning is the fact that John Stamos is most definitely at his hottest since he lost his “Uncle Jesse mullet.”

Catch “Wedding Wars” on A&E Monday, Dec. 11, at 9:00 p.m., 8:00 p.m. central.