Billy Crystal slams gay scenes on TV

Comedian Billy Crystal slams gay scenes on TV

Comedian Billy Crystal has criticised graphic gay scenes on TV, saying that some scenes are "too far" for his taste.

Crystal was speaking to the Television Critics Association to promote his new show, The Comedians.

Speaking of some gay storylines, he said: "Sometimes, it's just pushing it a little too far for my taste and I'm not going to reveal to you which ones they are."

He added: "I hope people don't abuse it and shove it in our face to the point where it feels like an everyday kind of thing."

His comments provoked outrage on Twitter, especially as Crystal rose to nationwide fame in the 1970s by playing Jodie Dallas in hit comedy Soap who was one of TV's first openly gay characters (pictured below).

He also said playing the first recurring gay character on network TV was "awkward" and "tough".

"I did it in front of a live audience and there were times when I would say to (a co-star), 'I love you,' and the audience would laugh nervously. I wanted to stop the taping and go, 'What is your problem?'

In a statement to The Hollywood Reporter Crystal later qualified his earlier comments.

"What I meant was that whenever sex or graphic nudity of any kind (gay or straight) is gratuitous to the plot or story, it becomes a little too much for my taste," he said.

Billy Crystal as openly gay Jodie Dallas in the Soap TV series of the 1970s

Billy Crystal as openly gay Jodie Dallas in the Soap TV series of the 1970s