Thursday, December 30, 2010

Urban Legends: Is Carl Winslow Gay?

Back in the early 90's, when i was a small child, TGIF ruled my Friday nights.  I went to ABC to get my generic family comedy fix.  All the hits were there, like Full House, Perfect Strangers, Hanging with Mr. Cooper, and my personal favorite; Family Matters.  As a child who had a less than normal upbringing, these cheesy sitcoms gave me an escape to what I thought a family should be, and Carl Winslow was the kind of Father I wanted.  He was a nice guy, but could give you a kick in the ass when needed.  Plus he was a badass cop, on the rough streets of Chicago.  It doesn't get much more masculine than that.  So, there have been many rumors over the years of Carl Winslow(portrayed by actor Reginald Vel Johnson) being a homosexual, but its hard for me to fathom, so lets take a look at the evidence.

Through my feverish google research, I can not find any record of good 'ole Reggie being married.  His IMDB page lists no record either, which would make him a 58 year old bachelor.  There have also been some interesting Internet rumors about him as well over the years.

My favorite however, was the rumor of him and James Avery(Uncle Phil from Fresh Prince) being gay lovers.  Can you imagine?  The two quintessential black TV Dad's of the 90's being romantically linked.  The only thing that could possibly top that, would be a tryst between Will Smith and Darius McCrary.  However, apparently James is married, so this couldn't be true, unless James got a little on the side.  I, however, do not buy this rumor.

Then, most of the roles that Johnson has selected over have been as the same type of character, a cop.  He played a cop in Turner and Hooch, he made a brief appearance as a cop at the end of "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, and in one of his most famous roles, he played Al Powell in Die Hard.  I like to pretend that his name is Al, and his character is the same one from Die Hard.  ABC should have done that, it could have been a great marketing tool.  So does Reginald, a.k.a. Carl the Great playing cops because he likes the Village People, or because  he is choosing masculine roles, so he can throw people off.  Or, its because he is a portly gentlemen.

We may never know the answer to this urban myth.  Reginald has stayed low since the conclusion of Family  Matters, choosing bit parts in movies, and a few TV shows.  Gay or not, his character, and Family Matters will always be a fond memory of my childhood.  Your a legend, Carl Winslow!


  1. Yes he was a flamer!!!! You can just read it off his body language and by the way he spoke. I first heard of this publicly around 2001 on vh1 or some other network, and only caught the tail end of it

  2. Yeah he was gay. I heard that not only was Carl Winslow gay, Waldow was gay, Urkel was Gay, and Eddie Winslow was suspect. lmfao

    1. they were not all gay and you dont even know how to spell waldo

  3. Honestly, who cares? It doesn't effect his ability to entertain either way, so it's a non-issue. As it should be.

  4. Everyone's gay in "family matters", more importantly I think youre all gay.

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  6. Masculine?! WTF does his masculine roles haves to do with anything? Many homosexual men are very masculine. Homophobes are so stupid!


  8. I heard carl was gay but I love family matters know matter what