Inside the church, Gay Sean and his friend decide they actually do want Sophie and Sian to be together. "Juliet and Juliet!" Shawn says (and so did Nikki Wade on Bad Girls! Helen Stewart, mmm!). And then they sing "Teenager in Love" with spirit fingers and jazz hands, and I start packing a bag to move to Manchester for real.
While the choir readies for the ceremony, Sophie and Sian lez it up outside about their feelings. It’s actually kind of heartbreaking. Sophie reaches out to touch Sian’s arm in a gesture of comfort and Sian smacks it away because what will people say? She says everything is all effed up now, that they’ll be under a microscope, that they won’t get to see each other as much, that maybe she should just move back to Southpaw (with her supposed Mother). Sophie tells her not to talk like that, but Sian bolts for the church.
Outside, Sophie gets a face full of Claire who shouts about how Sophie is a shit Christian because she lied and let everyone think Claire was a mental basket. And I actually like that delineation: Sophie’s spirituality, which is kind of a big part of her story, isn’t called into question because of her sexuality. In fact, no one on the show so far has asserted a dichotomy between her sexuality and spirituality. Claire calls it into question because of the lying and lack of compassion.
Sophie joins Sian inside the church while the choir sings "Lean on Me," and it’s so poignant: the lyrics and how they’re looking at each other in turn with all their fears and hope and love and turmoil just right at the surface.
This wedding, as I understand it, is historic because Hayley is a transsexual character who used to be called Harold. And Roy’s toast at the reception is the sweetest thing possibly ever.
It is 11 years since we last registered to be married, and we were informed that we could not. We have remained still, and the world has turned, to meet us. My message to you, Hayley, is this: the world can change its rules, its laws, and its opinions, as frequently as it chooses. But I will remain standing beside you. That will not change.
Sophie and Sian exchange glances across the toast because what if that could be their reality too? What if they could remain steadfast in their love for one another and the world could turn to embrace their relationship with open arms?
Man. I cannot believe this is happening on actual television.