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Best LGBT TV shows 2019: Netflix’s Sex Education to Euphoria

Amy Ashenden August 16, 2019
Euphoria's queer couple kiss

Zendaya stars in Euphoria (Euphoria/HBO)

LGBT TV shows from Netflix’s Sex Education to the BBC’s lesbian period drama Gentleman Jack and Euphoria on Sky Atlantic have kept us all busy binge watching this year.

New LGBT TV series Sex Education landed on our screens in January and we immediately fell in love with Otis’ awkward dramas and his best friend.

Not only does the Netflix show star Gillian Anderson as a hot mum and sex therapist, Sex Education also brought us Eric.

Played by Ncuti Gatwa, Eric quickly became a queer icon with his very relatable coming out scenes, iconic prom outfit and banana blowjob incident.

Watch our rundown of 2019’s top LGBT TV series:

Black Mirror

After Netflix brought us queer romance in ‘San Junipero’, we’d been waiting for another LGBT moment on the show.

Black Mirror season 5 episode ‘Striking Vipers’ sees two straight men have virtual reality sex through a video game.

Danny with a Striking Viper avatar
Danny (Anthony Mackie) with Lance, a Striking Viper character in Black Mirror. (Netflix)

Avengers: Endgame star Anthony Mackie plays Danny, a man who is trying for a second baby with his wife when he reconnects with an old friend, Karl (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II).

The virtual reality game ‘Striking Vipers X’ allows them to “replicate all physical sensation,” leading them to question their relationship as friends.

Gentleman Jack

Gentleman Jack
Gentleman Jack actress Sophie Rundle has spoken about the impact a lesbian relationship had on viewers (BBC)

BBC drama Gentleman Jack tells the true story of Anne Lister, a 17th century lesbian whose diaries were later decoded, revealing an incredible tale of butch lesbian history.

Anne Lister, played by Suranne Jones, falls in love with Ann Walker, played by Sophie Rundle.

While you cannot ignore the importance of historical lesbian representation, it’s also impossible to ignore just how much power walking Jones’ character does.

Special

Ryan O'Connell in Netflix comedy series Special
Ryan O’Connell in Netflix comedy series Special

Ryan O’Connell plays a fictionalised version of himself in the Netflix series, which is based on his memoir, “I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves.”

The star also serves as the showrunner and executive producer for the project, which follows his journey in the world as a gay man with cerebral palsy.

Some fans likened the show to acclaimed Josh Thomas comedy series Please Like Me, which featured an LGBT+ cast and featured a number of queer people with mental health problems.

Euphoria

Euphoria's queer couple kiss
Zendaya stars in Euphoria (Euphoria/HBO)

An exciting new teen drama, HBO series Euphoria (on Sky Atlantic in the UK) has been compared to Skins—except this time there’s plenty of LGBT representation.

An American adaptation of the Israeli show of the same name, Euphoria’s cast includes Zendaya, who plays the show’s protagonist Rue Bennett, who crushes on Jules, played by transgender actor, Hunter Schafer.

Queer Eye

Queer Eye's Jonathan Van Ness surprises his former teacher
Queer Eye’s Jonathan Van Ness surprises his former teacher (Netflix/Queer Eye)

Season 4 of Queer Eye dropped this year with several episodes destined to make us all shed a tear, as well as sparking rumours that Jonathan Van Ness and Antoni Porowski are dating.

The episode that really got fans teary eyed, however, was a trip to Jonathan Van Ness’s high school where they gave his former teacher a makeover.

Atypical

Netflix's Atypical bi moment
Fans are shipping these characters (Netflix/Atypical)

Netflix series Atypical is a coming-of-age drama about an autistic teenager, Sam.

Brigette Lundy-Paine plays his sister, Casey Gardner, who has a crush on the new girl at school.

Batwoman

Ruby Rose's Batwoman will be given her own series.
Ruby Rose as Batwoman (Jamie McCarthy/Getty)

Although Batwoman has not yet been released, heartthrob Ruby Rose has starred as Batwoman in several crossover episodes.

Ruby Rose will star as Kate Kane, Batwoman’s alter-ego, who is CW’s first out lesbian superhero to headline their own show.

The Australian actor, who identifies as genderfluid, initially faced backlash from fans who accused her of not being “lesbian enough” for the role.

Batwoman will premiere on 6 October on The CW Network.

The L Word

The L Word returns with Generation Q
The L Word is returning for a sequel (The L Word/Showtime)

Over 10 seasons, The L Word earned the title of ‘the lesbian bible’ as they brought us queer women “talking, laughing, loving, breathing, fighting, f*cking, crying, drinking, riding, winning, losing, cheating, kissing, thinking, dreaming.”

Now The L Word is relaunching in autumn 2019 with ‘Generation Q’, and have done casting call outs for transgender men.

US network Showtime has confirmed that the new series will feature the return of actors Jennifer Beals (Bette), Katherine Moennig (Shane) and Leisha Hailey (Alice).

Tales of the City

Photo of Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis in Tales of the City
Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis as Mary Ann Singleton and Anna Madrigal in Tales of the City. (Nino Munoz/Netflix)

Netflix’s Tales of the City follows Mary Ann as she returns to San Francisco and is reunited with her daughter Shawna (Ellen Page) and ex-husband Brian (Paul Gross). She returns 20 years after leaving them behind to focus on her career.

Based on a book of the same name, the show stars Ellen Page and features intergenerational relationships in the LGBT+ community.

Killing Eve

Killing Eve returned to BBC America in 2019, bringing serious levels of sexual tension between serial killer Villanelle (Jodie Comer) and M15 agent Eve (Sandra Oh) to our screens.

The show was criticised by some fans for ‘queerbaiting’ after Sandra Oh’s comments that viewers were reading into their relationship.

Orange Is the New Black

Orange Is the New Black's final season
Orange Is the New Black’s final season landed in 2019 (Netflix/Orange Is the New Black)

From Big Boo’s “big hetero hello” to Crazy Eye’s love poem for Piper, Orange Is the New Black isn’t short of iconic moments.

The Emmy award-winning show, which premiered in 2013, finished filming its seventh and final season on 26 February, 2019.

During its six-year tenure as one of Netflix’s flagship LGBT TV shows, Orange is the New Black sparked debate on topics such as racial and transgender inequality within the justice system and prison reform.

Pose

FX ballroom series Pose follows ballroom culture in the 1980s in New York City, most notably highlighting the lives of Black gay men and transgender women of colour.

Pose star Billy Porter spoke to PinkNews about why men can–obviously–wear dresses, why LGBT TV shows matter, and playing drunk.

Watch more on LGBT TV shows on PinkNews’ YouTube.

More: Atypical, batwoman, Black Mirror, Euphoria, gentleman jack, netflix, orange is the new black, pose, queer eye, sex education, special, tales of the city, the L word

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