Cinema and TV, much like literature, have always been a mirror of society in that particular time.
Queer characters were introduced on American TV around the later 1970s. But up until 2016, most LGBTQIA+ characters were a part of what is called the “bury your gays” trope. This trope refers to the tendency of queer characters to have uncertain or sad endings like death, imprisonment, heartbreak, or depression.
Thankfully, that’s not the case anymore. Gay representation in movies and TV is better than ever right now. Gone are the days when the only gay character in shows was the funny, closeted best friend who ends up heartbroken when he finally comes out.
Movies and shows are finally moving on to the subtle nuances and quirks of LGBTQIA+ relationships and friendships rather than focusing on only the queer aspect, and we’re here for it!
In today’s blog, we’ll discuss 5 LGBTQ shows on Netflix that you should binge-watch today!
No. of seasons: 6; with season 7 on the way!
First on our list of LGBTQ shows on Netflix is Élite: the Spanish thriller and drama series.
It features a highly-skilled ensemble cast and revolves around the lives of a group of high school students. But mind you, they aren’t your typical high school students. Set in the outskirts of Madrid, Las Encinas is a fictional high school with a student body so rich and exclusive they can almost be called elite.
Three poor students enroll at Las Encinas through a scholarship when their public school building collapses. And it’s safe to say that this is where things started to go downhill.
The show addresses several gay storylines and the effect race and societal class of a family have on the person coming out of the closet. This includes but is not limited to Ander and Omar’s relationship and the rocky dance they perform to somehow squeeze out of the closet.
The main themes featured in Élite are sex, money, love, religion, drugs, murder, and teen angst. Viewers often describe the show as their guilty pleasure, and we agree; it does tick off all the boxes. Check out Élite’s trailer on YouTube; it’ll surely make your goosebumps rise in anticipation!
No. of seasons: 1, with season 2 on the way!
Next up is Heartstopper, and this one is for all the Alice Oseman comic fans!
This teenage romantic comedy and drama accurately captures the confusion, anxiety, realization, denial, grief, acceptance, and finally, the exhilaration of meeting your first gay love.
Charlie Spring is a year 10 student at Truham Grammar School. He came out as gay at school the year before, and his classmates and seniors him bullied relentlessly for it.
Enter Nick Nelson, a year 11 student who, at first glance, is the typical popular jock. However, his insecurities and his real personality are slowly brought to light, making him that much more human and lovable.
When Charlie is assigned as Nick’s seat partner in class, something clicks in Charlie’s mind. Does the same happen with Nick? Or will Charlie be hurt all over again by yet another person in his life?
Watch Heartstopper’s trailer on YouTube for a sneak peek into Charlie’s world.
No. of seasons: 6
The Canadian comedy-drama and TV sitcom, Schitt’s Creek is one of the most LGBTQ-friendly shows on Netflix syou’ll find. It’s among the first series to show the LGBTQIA+ community as a standard presence rather than an issue to fight for.
The filthy-rich Rose family is betrayed by their business manager. They’re left with nothing but a small town, Schitt’s Creek, that they had bought as a joke.
Jonathan Rose and his wife Moira, previous billionaires, now have to live with their adult children, Alexis and David Rose, in a small-town motel without money or space.
David Rose, the son of the Roses, is a proud pansexual. He discloses it in such a classy way in the show we couldn’t help but tell you about it. When asked if he preferred red or white wine (men or women, respectively), he replied, “I like the wine, not the label.” Who didn’t want to be David at that moment?
To get a look at just how well the Roses’ are settling in, check out Schitt’s Creek’s season 1 official trailer!
No. of seasons: 8
At first glance, Brooklyn Nine-Nine might seem like a light-hearted workplace sitcom with a brilliant ensemble cast. But once you start watching it, you’ll notice there’s much more to it than meets the eye.
For example, in the first episode, in under ten minutes, the precinct squad is introduced to the new CO (Commanding Officer), Raymond Holt.
However, what they didn’t know and never would’ve guessed is that he’s an openly gay officer and has been so since the beginning of his career. The show gives a peek into his career as an openly gay, black detective in the NYPD.
Another important queer character in the show is the strict, secretive, hard-to-read detective Rosa Diaz. Her coming out as bisexual seems uncharacteristic but completely believable; she does so on her terms, in her way, and she’s cool with it, too!
If you’ve been thinking about bingeing Brooklyn Nine-Nine for a while now, check out its official trailer; it’ll speed up your decision!
Queer Eye: More than a Makeover
No. of seasons: 6, with season 7 on the way!
Last on our list today is Queer Eye; you know what they say, save the best for the last!
This light-hearted reality show features “The Fab Five”: Antoni Porowski (food/wine expert), Tan France (fashion expert), Karamo Brown (culture expert), Bobby Berk (design expert), and Jonathan Van Ness (grooming expert).
Together, this flamboyant team of five picks someone for each episode (the episode’s “hero”) and spend a week turning their lives upside down with their expertise. The show loudly and unapologetically represents people from different religions, sexual identities, races, and walks of life.
There’s nothing wrong with being who you are; the Fab Five, with their confident personalities and proud identities, say it all.
If you think Queer Eye: More than a Makeover won’t be as good as Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, we can change your mind; check out its trailer if you don’t believe us!
In our blog today, we’ve discussed 5 LGBTQ shows on Netflix. These feel-good series with wholesome LGBTQIA+ community representation can make any boring family get-together fun.
If you think we’ve left out another amazing show off this list, let us know in the comments section!