The Aussie gay couple who vocally supported the Vote No campaign in the marriage equality plebiscite appear to be a little salty at John Oliver, after the comedian turned them into fodder for a joke on his HBO show this week.
In a timely and extremely cathartic segment, Oliver ripped the shit out of our hugely expensive, non-legally binding postal opinion poll, calling it “the biggest waste of Australian money since every Baz Luhrmann film.”
He also hung a fair bit of shit on Mark Poidevin and his partner Ben Rodgers, whose position seemingly boils down to the fact that because Ben doesn’t want to marry Mark (we’re so sorry, bro), no other gay people don’t deserve equal recognition before the law.
Using footage from their ABC interview in September, he called Ben “cold-blooded” and pleaded with Mark to get the hell out because he can do “so much better.”
After the segment with John Oliver’s brutally sassy take on them went viral, Poidevin spoke to Nine News, saying “Ben and I actually laughed when we first saw it, but we were surprised with what they actually did with the footage and how it came out.”
He said that a researcher from HBO’s Last Week Tonight contacted them ahead of the segment airing to ask if they stood by the footage from their original ABC interview. “I told them it was completely accurate but clarified that I do support civil unions,” Mark said.
As for John Oliver’s take, he said:
“Anyone who knows me in real life knows it’s a complete joke and that’s how we took it. He is a comedian. We were not expecting an amazingly intelligent presentation on the whole discussion. It’s just a late night TV show.”
Yeah, something tells us that John Oliver might have hit a nerve.
Mark went on to say: “Ben and I have been together for more than 15 years and will be together in the next 15 – none of this has any bearing on our relationship.”
Earlier this year, gay activist Peter Bonsall-Boone passed away, leaving behind his partner of 50 years, Peter de Waal. Before his passing, on the couple’s fiftieth anniversary, Boone expressed his regret that the law in Australia had yet to catch up to them.
In a video for Australian Marriage Equality, he said:
“I’d love to be able to move my wedding ring from my right hand to my left hand. And then I’d be able to call him my husband and have no problems with that. That would be wonderful. Marriage for Peter and me would be a great sort of fulfilment of many years of association and love. To make it official would be just great.”
“We’ve been second class citizens for all of the 50 years we’ve been together. It would be absolutely wonderful if we could say one day, ‘We are equal.””