Sep. 24th, 2016

rallamajoop: (Illya)
Poking through the old slashfic archives for The Man from UNCLE, one soon notes that where other fandoms have hooker AUs, MfU has the popular Illya Kuryakin: Gay KGB Honey Trap fanon backstory. Like so many old 90’s slash tropes, this one seems to have waned in popularity in today’s (at least theoretically) more culturally sensitive times, which may be no great loss. But the big surprise for me, when reading up on history of espionage for a quite unrelated fic idea, came in discovering just how much historical support there was for this particular sensationalist take on the inner workings of the KGB (let alone all the other Cold War era queer-espionage-shenanigans I'd wind up discovering along the way).

Under the cut: Gay sexpionage, the Cambridge Spy Ring, wild conspiracy theories about the ‘Homosexual International’, the UK secret services’ century-long love-hate relationship with gay spies, and a long and shameful legacy of persecution )

Further reading )

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