I must have seen several episodes of Doogie Howser, but nothing really stuck in my memory. I was aware that Neil Patrick Harris was still around, mostly from his memorable role in Starship Troopers, but that was about it.
A few months ago I decided to try How I Met Your Mother and by now I caught up with all the episodes that aired so far. The show is basically a Friends clone that tries really hard not to be a friends clone and while it's nowhere as good, it's consistently entertaining. The cast is good, but there's no doubt that Neil Patrick Harris carries the show. He's absolutely amazing as Barney. I was also aware that he was openly gay so I was very pleased that he proved that a gay man can play a straight womaniser convincingly.
Today I found this interview he had on Ellen three years ago.
What can I say, I was a bit disappointed. On the one hand I appreciate his honesty. He could've said that he decided to come out of the closet to inspire other gay people and use his status as a popular star to help raise acceptance, but instead he said the truth: He came out of the closet because some scandal with one of his old flames was going to explode in the papers and he wanted to pre-empt it. What can I say, it left me a bit cold.
We hear the occasional idiot argueing that a gay person isn't going to be convincing in a straight role. This is obviously a load of crap. A good actor is a good actor. After all you don't see straight actors being accused of being unconvincing when they portray gay or transsexual characters (Tom Cruise, Felicity Huffman, Al Pacino and so on). So to hear Neil Patrick Harris actually admitting that he was staying in the closet so he won't be denied straight roles was actually a little bit depressing.
I can't judge him, though. Maybe if he did come out of the closet before getting role of Barney in HIMYM he might've never gotten it. Who knows. It's just a little bit uninspiring.