Netflix's,“Special,” Showcases Disability & Sexuality
On April 12th, 2019 Netflix released, Special, an eight episode television series. The series is loosely based on the memoir, I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves by Ryan O’Connell, who also wrote, starred and executive produced the series.
O’Connell is a gay man and has Cerebral Palsy, being in various writers rooms in Hollywood, he never saw any roles for for himself. And more importantly any that reflected what his experience was like. With his new coming of age comedy series, he created that role for himself. The show, inspired by real life events, explores coming to terms with disability and sexuality.
For a long time O’Connell told his coworkers his limp, brought on by Cerebral Palsy, was from a car accident. The memoir and shows O’Connell coming out of the “disability closet,”. The resulting show is filled with O’Connell’s charisma and comedy that may seem familiar from Will & Grace and Awkward, where he got his writing start.