196788_d0154b.JPGReality TV has always embraced gay contestants, although in the early days, it was often only to sow conflict: The Christian mother of four teamed with the flamboyant bottom. But shows like “Project Runway” and “Top Chef” have made it not only passe to be gay, sometimes it seems like a requirement.

But with the latest installment of “Big Snooz”… er, “Brother,” it looks more like the era of the “token” gay is here to stay … for a few more weeks, at least. Gay Dallas media buyer Josh was teamed with L.A. Realtor Neil in a “Death Do You Part” twist where teams compete as one — and the producers insist that they have been paired with their potential “soulmates.”

But last night, we lost one of the gays. Neil left “due to a personal emergency,” and Josh’s only option was to team up with a straight guy or a straight girl, both of whom were booted before America could learn to hate them. So Josh’s “soulmate” is now just some stranger who’s already proven expert at getting kicked out of the house.

The gimmick — like the entire show — is stupid in the first place. A showmance is one thing, but a “soulmate”? C’mon.

But what really ticks me off is that Neil was so casually allowed to leave. “Big Brother” is the show that openly weighed whether to inform the contestants of the 9-11 attacks, only deciding they should because one contestant’s family member was in one of the buildings. So what “personal emergency” could warrant allowing one of only two gays to quickly and unceremoniously leave the show?

 I’m so over this show. Oh, I’ll keep watching for the beefcake. But it is so over.

— Arnold Wayne Jones 

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