CBBC’s Response To Complaints Over A Same-Sex Kiss Scene Is Going Viral For How Great It Is

‘It’s an important way of showing children what respectful, kind and loving relationships look like.’

The Next Step scene

by Georgia Aspinall |
Updated on

CBBC has responded to complaints over a same-sex kiss scene that was aired on dance drama The Next Step. Defending their decision, their response has received tons of support online for how well it combats the homophobic reaction.

CBBC, whose target audience is aged between 6 and 12, aired the scene last week on the teen drama. The storyline on The Next Step, which is about dancers competing for a national title, follows two female teenagers, Jude and Cleo who share a kiss after performing a duet together.

Receiving over 100 complaints in response to the scene, CBBC felt obliged to respond to the angry viewers.

‘The decision to include this moment, as part of a longer storyline throughout series seven which has been tracking the development of a romantic relationship between two of the characters, Jude and Cleo, was taken very carefully and with much consideration, and came about after CBBC and Boat Rocker (the production company who make the show) acknowledged that the series could and should do more to reflect the lives of LGBTQ+ young people,’ they said in a statement.

‘This is an important part of our mission to make sure that every child feels like they belong, that they are safe, and that they can be who they want to be,’ it continued. ‘We believe that the storyline, and the kiss, was handled with sensitivity and without sensationalism, following as it did the portrayal of Jude and Cleo’s developing relationship and I’m afraid we do not agree that it was inappropriate for the audience age.’

CBBC regularly portrays heterosexual young people kissing.

Comparing the scene to heterosexual kissing scenes, they added that ‘CBBC regularly portrays heterosexual young people dating, falling in love, and kissing, and it is an important way of showing children what respectful, kind and loving relationships look like.’

The response has since received tons of support on social media, with TV critic Scott Bryan tweeting that is was ‘simply A+’ and receiving near 30,000 likes. Because, despite the seemingly dramatic reaction this is not the first time CBBC have aired a same-sex kiss. In fact, their first scene dates back to 1994 in Byker Grove.

You would hope that by 2020, such a moment being included in a children’s TV show wouldn’t be a cause of such outrage nor would it be even a notable or significant moment. It just goes to show how much more work is to be done to spread positive and inclusive attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community.

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