Out on the Wing
Being gay in the armed forces isn’t illegal any longer, but in the male-dominated world of sports, it would appear that, even in the 21st century, boys can only play football professionally if they’re avowedly heterosexual.
DC Jackson’s new comedy takes place in the studio of one of Scotland’s most popular football phone-in shows on the night a prominent SPL footballer comes out as gay. Jackson, a keen football fan, is dismayed by the lack of attention given to the subject. ‘It’s really interesting that the governing bodies in Scottish football enact these initiatives about kicking sectarianism out of football and showing racism the red card, and yet there remains a fairly endemic homophobia in football that just never gets mentioned.’
Jackson knows the territory well, having worked on football phone-in shows as a student, and, while critical of aspects of Scottish masculinity, he’s keen to stress the comic nature of his work, hoping to cross the conceivably mutually exclusive boundaries of football and theatre. ‘There are certainly a few jokes that rely on having some people in the audience with a bit of knowledge of these kind of shows,’ he says. ‘I hope that it’ll be mildly thought provoking but it’s not really a meditation or an indictment of football and national culture. More than anything, it’s meant to be a laugh.’