Avary Amaral ‘27 / Emertainment Monthly Writer
Larry Charles’s Dicks: The Musical offers a twist of a societal narrative. In the film industry, there has been a popular line of thought that suggests straight actors are courageous for taking on roles of a different sexuality. Dicks: The Musical addresses this right away, wasting no time. As soon as the movie begins, the film acknowledges that Josh Sharp (Craig) and Aaron Jackson (Trevor) are gay men who are bravely playing straight men. The introduction mocks the common appraisal of straight men “braving” the world of LGBTQ+ to take on gay roles, setting the tone for the remaining scenes.
As the film continues on, it becomes clear what social rhetoric Charles, Sharpe, and Jackson are trying to criticize and bring attention to. The twin brothers, Craig and Trevor are portrayed as stereotypical “dicks”, only concerned with money, power, and wielding their phalluses. These two main characters start off by trying to hide their vulnerable side, a common interpretation of how men handle their emotions. As the plot continues, the twins find themselves confiding in each other, revealing their intense and wholesome emotions to each other, contradicting the common man preconception.
Throughout the film, despite the switch from competing masculinity to passionate bromance, the twins display flamboyant tendencies, animated and proud of that. This ironic personality, displayed by both twins goes against the grain of what a straight man is seen to be in the eyes of social constructs.
The entire film is hellbent on destroying the viewers sense of sexuality and gender identity. The twin brothers are parented by two even more eccentric beings, their father, Harris (Nathan Lane), and their mother, Evelyn (Megan Mullally). Harris, dressed so fabulously like a rich archetypal gay man, shocks Craig with his homosexuality, because how could a man so in love with mimosas and entranced by fine silk be gay? Evelyn, adversely, plays into the lonely woman trope, instead of continuing Charles’s upside down rehearsal of social interaction. Her home, filled with trinkets and needlepoint, is eye-catching and overwhelming, a world of distractions to remove her from the reality of her separation from the twin’s father.
The continuing objective of completely annihilating social labels is further supported by the confusing relationship between Lane and Mullally. Lane, considering himself gay, declares he still finds Mullally attractive, the two of them laying in bed, debating what they are and who they are in terms of relation. The pair decide to let go of trying to find a box to contain themselves in.
The most memorable part of the film is the ending scene, where God (Bowen Yang) completely disregards common Christian ideals and pronounces that love is love, even if it means marrying two brothers. Nuns, a cowboy, and other customary Christian followers who have shown up at the wedding to protest, are completely turned against their traditional beliefs solely on God’s word.
Not only does the film end with a shocking celebration of incest, but the final screen is shrouded by Mullally’s flying vagina, followed by the credits.
Despite the film’s entertaining vibrant colors and comedic songs, two aspects did disappoint. Due to sexuality taking the spotlight, the plot comes off as being a bit underdeveloped, with the only driving factor for the latter half of the film being Lane’s desperate need to find his sewer boys. Megan Thee Stallion also reveals her lack of acting experience in her scenes and musical numbers, delivering less than expected. As a vocally strong woman, her performance would be anticipated to be at a level that would be in competition with the twin’s musical numbers, but sadly doesn’t even compare.
Charles’s Dicks: The Musical provides a visual for the social discussion surrounding sexuality that asks what labels even do, and why love has boundaries to begin with. While some may argue that the movie goes too far, it can be suggested that going that far is what has been necessary for some to rethink their positions on how humans perceive love and sex.