Life&Culture

TV has more LGBTQ characters than ever, GLAAD reports

TV has more LGBTQ characters than ever, GLAAD reports

"While it is heartening to see progress being made in LGBTQ representation on television, it's important to remember that numbers are only part of the story, and we must continue the push for more diverse and intricate portrayals of the LGBTQ community", GLADD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said. That amount comprises 92 regular characters, up from 84 last year, and 50 recurring, down 8 from last year. These increases appear across broadcast networks like ABC, leading others at 7.3 percent of regular characters, and streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon.

Also, the number of trans characters across all platforms has more than doubled since a year ago. Past year there were no trans characters counted on broadcast. The report said more than 25 lesbian and bisexual female-identifying characters have died on scripted TV and streaming series since the beginning of 2016 - a lot of them violently - a move it said "sends a risky message to audiences that LGBTQ people are secondary and disposable".

GLAAD reports that lesbian representation "decreased dramatically" from 33 percent last year to 17 percent this year. And though the number of black series regulars has hit a new high at 20 percent, only 38 percent of those characters are women.

However, the "bury your gays" trope is still alive with over 25 gay and bisexual female characters being killed off on scripted series since the beginning of 2016. Fans were particularly outraged after CW's dystopian teen drama "The 100" killed off a beloved character in March. Out of 16 transgender characters, three are on broadcast networks, none of which had shows with transgender characters a year ago.

Female student killed, another injured in stabbing at Abbotsford high school
We do not believe the suspect has ties to this school, or to the two girls, or specifically to the Abbotsford area. Ann's Parish toward the school carrying a bouquet of flowers. "It ruptures our sense of security".


"Most of these deaths served no other goal than to further the narrative of a more central (and often straight, cisgender) character", Ellis noted. However, the representation skews largely female, with 16 women and only five men. TV has only succeeded when LGBTQ characters are series regulars, and, even better, the leads of their shows. GLAAD notes that the dramedy, which stars Jeffrey Tambor as a 70-year-old transgender woman, features two other transgender characters (both played by transgender actors) and three other characters identified as LGBT.

-Of 895 series regular characters on 118 primetime scripted shows, 43 characters are LGBTQ. While Latinos accounted for eight percent of series regulars (up from seven percent last year), GLAAD points out that figure is still well below the 17 percent estimate recorded in the 2014 U.S. Census.

According to Ellis, there is much more work to do to "ensure fair, accurate, and inclusive stories".