‘Happiest Season’: How Clea DuVall Made the Queer Holiday Rom-Com the World Needs Now

‘Happiest Season’: How Clea DuVall Made the Queer Holiday Rom-Com the World Needs Now
[Editor’s note: The following article contains slight spoilers for “Happiest Season.” This article was originally published on Monday, November 23, 2020.]

Complications, misadventures, and wild assumptions have long been the bread and butter of the romantic comedy. What’s romance without a sexy secret? What’s comedy without a big blunder? So while the plot that drives Clea DuVall’s holiday-themed sophomore feature “Happiest Season” falls neatly into the genre expectations of the rom-com, it also comes with a big twist: it’s about a same-sex couple. How’s that for a complication?

As “Happiest Season” opens, long-term couple Abby (Kristen Stewart) and Harper (Mackenzie Davis) are preparing to, somewhat unexpectedly, spend the holiday with Harper’s uptight, affluent family in suburban Pennsylvania. It’s Abby first time meeting the clan, which is currently in the throes of a political campaign poised to make their already straight-laced take on life even more, well, straight. You can probably guess the problem here:
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