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Why The Internet is Obsessed With This Missing Detail in Love, Simon
The gay coming-of-age story is an almost-perfect depiction of what it's like growing up LGBT+ in the modern age. However, it dropped the ball on one key detail — and the Internet won't let us forget it.
By now you've probably heard about Love, Simon and its importance for queer and questioning youth. At its heart, the film a coming of age story in which a young adult learns to be comfortable in his own skin. The fact that the protagonist, Simon Spier, spends much of the film thinking any boy his age who is even slightly nice to him is also gay is one of the most endearing (and accurate) portrayals of growing up LGBT. However, for all its supposed accuracy, the film forgets one key detail — and it has to do with Simon's Christmas playlist.
As Simon, AKA "Jacques", and "Blue" exchange emails back and forth, Simon decides to flex his vast song library collection by making a personal playlist to impress his virtual crush. The songs that were included were not necessarily sensational. Actually, for an introspective, angsty teen with a supposedly great taste in music, his selection was a bit uninspired. What really captured the attention of the internet, however, was the exclusion of Mariah Carey's "All I want for Christmas is You".
Not only is any Christmas playlist incomplete without this absolute banger, but it is also overwhelmingly heteronormative. Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You" is nearly synonymous with the fervor of her gay fans. So why was it not on the list? The Internet (read: Tumblr users) have spouted light-hearted theories, ranging from copyright issues to characterization. While the Internet lovingly roasts its new golden standard for positive gay representation, the Christmas playlist fiasco takes on a new life.
It is almost poetic justice for this minute detail to become a Tumblr meme. A crucial element of Love, Simon is the school blog, "Creek Secrets". This is where Blue posts his confession about being gay. In the film, this blog seems to be an independent site. However, in the novel the film is based on (Simon vs. The Homosapien Agenda) the blog is actually hosted on Tumblr. In a way, this self-aware, mock-outrage over Simon's Christmas playlist ultimately fulfills the promise of the novel — to give queer youths something they can obsess over and relate to, in a safe and familiar setting.