Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Politically Incorrect: Denis Leary Can Wear a Dress and Use the Word Fag-And Get Away with It

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

Politically Incorrect: Denis Leary Can Wear a Dress and Use the Word Fag-And Get Away with It

Article excerpt

AFTER APPEARING in more than 30 films and multiple HBO comedy specials, caustic actor-comedian Denis Leary cocreated the controversial FX series Rescue Me, in which he stars as troubled New York City firefighter Tommy Gavin. While waiting for his show's fifth season to ignite next spring, the 51-year-old Emmy and Golden Globe nominee releases his book Why We Suck: A Feel Good Guide to Staying Fat, Loud, Lazy and Stupid on November 18. Beware: No one's safe from his flames including Oprah and "fags."

In your book there is a chapter titled "Testicle-Colored Towels," in which you blame "some gay man" for the fancy names used to describe shades of pink. What else can you pin on the gays? There's also the thing in the book about when you go to a restaurant and the waiter, even if he's not gay, has to describe an "heirloom tomato tower" as opposed to just "tomatoes and mozzarella." I just like to cut to the chase. But hey, that's coming from a man who just wore a Gucci dress on national television for a Fashion Rocks gag.

Yes, you made a beautiful host. Did you get any expert gay consultation on that outfit? I chose this powder-blue dress because it was the least complicated dress I could find. My gay stylist, Sam Spector, said, "You can't wear this dress. It's not good enough." I said, "Sam, this is comedy. It's not the fashion world." But when I went to the dress rehearsal he had this incredible dress and said, "This dress you can step into and it was worn by Keira Knightley at the Pirates of the Caribbean premiere. It's funnier and better-looking." And that dress got a huge fuckin' laugh that I don't think I would've gotten in that powder-blue dress.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

You also have a chapter titled "Matt Dillon Is a Giant Fag." What gives you the right to use the f word? Well, because I also have a chapter called "We'd Hate You Even if You Weren't Black." I don't believe in the power of words. My parents came from Ireland, where the word cunt is literally a word your mother and father would use to describe the weather or the car: "That cunting car won't start!" And I come from a Catholic background where the nuns were always telling you, "Don't do this, don't say this," so anytime anyone tells me I shouldn't say something, my reaction is, "Why not?"

After flirting with homosexuality for much of the series, "probie" [probationary firefighter] Mike ultimately decided he was a bisexual who preferred women. …

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