Opinion | LGBTQ+ Representation: Has it really progressed?


Lesbian Characters

Lesbian characters especially suffer at the hands of film and television producers on the rare occasions that they are actually represented. So much so, in fact, that a trope was born off of the consistent death of any queer women. “Bury Your Gays” refers to the overwhelming presence of gay female characters that are killed off, even if they are a central character to the plot. There are countless examples of this phenomenon, which paints these characters as simply a means to an end, rather than an integral part of the plot. They are a chess piece in an industry trying to please the younger generation, and they are constantly treated as such.


Gay Characters

Fortunately for many gay male characters, they tend to survive to see a shows end. Unfortunately, they really don’t receive any more character development then lesbian characters do, sticking to the same harmful tropes that fail at breaking down stereotypes time and time again.

Transgender Characters

Transgender characters are drastically less common then other queer characters, so that’s a problem within itself. Still, even when they are present, they are often side characters. They don’t get a title role, any complex character writing, and are often reduced down to only their gender identity.


Of course, there are some knights in shining armor within the television industry. Some networks are becoming more progressive and giving examples of well-rounded queer characters. Here are a few shows that are changing the narrative for how queer characters are written.



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Youth Upholding Democracy

Youth Upholding Democracy

A group of students working to increase civic participation among our fellow young people. https://www.youthupholdingdemocracy.com/