In a new interview, Robert Sheehan
talks about how his character on The Umbrella Academy was
re-written as gay.
In the Netflix series, Sheehan plays
Klaus Hargreeves, also known as Number 4 and The Seance. The show
follows a group of seven adopted siblings born on the same day with
extraordinary powers. Klaus can talk to the dead. The series is based
on the Dark Horse comic book of the same name.
In an Attitude cover interview,
Sheehan explained that he welcomed producers' idea to change his
"In truth, at the time [working on
season one], [the story] was that Klaus had had a relationship with a
Vietnamese woman, who has a child in the 1960s, and then he goes to
find a daughter who’d be quite old and make contact,” Sheehan
told the outlet.
"Then it became, ‘Well, what if
he had a gay relationship in Vietnam?’ I was like, ‘Yeah,
"You have to follow your nose to
find the most interesting road to take. And I found that really,
really interesting and quite subversive of the Vietnam that’s been
depicted before,” he said.
The following paragraph includes
spoilers for the show's second season.
In The Umbrella Academy season
two, Vanya Hargreeves, played by out actress Ellen Page, has a
romantic relationship with another woman. In season one, Vanya was
dating a man.
Sheehan said that the series presents
same-sex relationships without prejudice.
“One thing I really do love about
Umbrella Academy is that there aren’t any kind of finer
points put on love and things like that,” Sheehan
"The show is delightfully and
wonderfully and aspirationally non-prejudicial in that sense; it’s
just about connection and love. That’s all it should be about,”
According to Attitude, Sheehan
identifies as straight but has had experiences with men in the past.