Staff Writer cityXtra Magazine
Tonight is the winter premiere of Siesta Key, and Madisson and the gang are back to soak up the sun and create new drama on the MTV reality series.
Tarik Jenkins is one of the series’ cast members, and the first gay character on the show. Tarik was born and raised in Siesta Key, and he is one of Madisson’s closest friends. In tonight’s episode he tells her how he is ready for a more serious relationship, but what it is like dating in a conservative place like Siesta Key?
“Dating here is kind of a ’don’t ask, don’t tell’ kind of thing. I don’t feel comfortable here yet walking down the street holding hands, kissing a guy in public,” Tarik told NewNowNext. “So I go out to the straight bars with my girlfriends, and the guys hit on them, and 90% of the time the guys hit on me as well.”
“It’s just like a fun adventure for me right now.”
Tarik admits that Siesta Key is more understanding and open about gay people than when he was growing up—even though he actually never came out while he was living there.
“I never came out. For me it was just the process of people finding out. There were rumors, people trash talking me in high school,” Tarik explained. “It put me in a bubble to start playing more sports. I played tennis my whole life, I played semi-professionally. Tennis got me out of that bubble. I got to hang out with people who understood me.”
Tarik show off some of his moves on the tennis court in tonight’s episode, but how does describe his storyline for the rest of the season?
“Provocative. At the end of the day I am Madisson’s best friend and I have her back no matter what.”
Is that a promise or a threat? Find out when Siesta Key returns January 15 at 10/9c on MTV.