The last couple days have been aglow with true love and support for the LGBT movement with the legalization of marriage in all 50 states. While my tumblr dashboard and facebook page have shown picture after picture of happy couples I’ve also noticed fans paying tribute to those fictional same sex couples who would be just as happy about the win.
LGBT representation in media has been growing since the 90’s and varies from media to media in how well it is used. Even as a hetero woman I love watching these shows. I could go on and on about why this may be, the ever present question of what draws straight women to squee over gay men should be given a closer look.
But that’s not what this post is about. This post is a celebration, my tribute to my favorite couples who have shown me that a love story doesn’t have to be between a man and woman. That a story can, and should, have characters of all types to add to its voice. Here is a list of my favorite LGBT shows, books, and comics.
1. Revolutionary Girl Utena (f/f)
A classic anime that everyone should watch, regardless of the fact that it has anime’s iconic f/f couple. The entire series is a journey for two girls Utena and Anthy who are first roommates, then friends, and finally lovers. This show is incredibly ahead of its time as it tackles issues of abusive relationships, gender roles, and feminism.
2. Yurikuma Arashi (f/f)
I couldn’t leave this show off this list because of the numerous themes that are interlaced in it that represent the struggle of the LGBT community. While the show does have its uncomfortable moments the relationship between Kureha, Ginko, and even Lulu is deeply emotional.
3. Sailor Moon (f/f)
Sailor Moon is one of my favorite shows and always will be. I love the characters and it has a lot of positive things to say about relationships between females. It also features my first exposure to same sex relationships in any media form. Even when the show came to America and tried to explain the gay away by calling them “cousins”, there was no hiding that something else was happening between Sailor Neptune and Uranus. These two have a relationship that gives even Usagi and Mamoru a run for their money.
4. No. 6 (m/m)
One of the few yaoi animes that have equal parts drama and romance. It is really is difficult to find an anime with m/m characters that are in a healthy relationship and while Shion and Nezumi have their problems they both have undeniable respect and love for each other. Another thing I enjoyed about the show was the way it handled the intimate moments between these two, there isn’t any graphic sex scenes but instead focuses on more subtle romantic gestures. Small kisses, domestic house work, and even a dance scene.
Madeline Miller retells the story of The Illiad with behind the scenes background in her novel, Song of Achilles. While the story follows Achilles, our main character is actually Patroclus his childhood friend. It’s long been suspected that Achilles and Patroclus were more then just friends and Miller shows the depth of their relationship in this book. It is one of the most beautifully written LGBT stories I’ve ever read, focusing on the deep love between both men and the struggles they encounter.
I just have to add, that anything by Mary Renault is also a worth while read. Renault wrote about male/male relationships in Ancient Greece. She was a profound author of her time and an expert in ancient history.
This book is the high fantasy m/m novel that I’ve been waiting for. The first of a series the story is a well written, in depth fantasy world where the two main characters just so happen to be gay. Their relationship is not the driving factor of the story but handled more as part of the character. Definitely one of my favorite books for that reason alone.
- Young Avengers (various) and Runaways (various)
These are two different comic series but I put them together because they both feature a group of super powered teens looking for their place in the world. Because of that these series are a lot more accepting of different types of characters and have numerous types of relationships in them. Young Avengers features my all time favorite comic book couple, Teddy and Billy. While Runaways features one of my favorite female characters in comics, Karolina Dean.
These two comics both show teenagers struggling with their sexuality the same way many readers might. Despite the fact that they have super powers and are battling aliens, sometimes it is the more human element of these characters that we are drawn to.
- Rat Queens (f/f)
Betty is an adorable, sometimes blood thirsty, halfing who just so happens to be gay. Halfings are never considered the traditional anything in fantasy, just look at Lord of the Rings. Frodo wasn’t a traditional hero, so I think the choice of making Betty a lesbian was awesome. It’s also implied that Betty is a bit of a lady killer, I bet she has a lover list a mile long.
One of my favorite web comics right now is hosted on Tumblr and tells the story of a college hockey team. The newest member is Eric Bittle who use to figure skate but is now adapting to life in a more aggressive sport. It updates irregularly but has been very successful overall. There was a recent kickstarter to compile the comic into it’s first volume.
This is a new discovery of mine and has become a quick favorite. Tobias and Guy started off as a silly one-shot comic that grew into something much more. The basic premise follows Guy (yes that’s his name), who unwittingly makes a comment about selling his soul to the devil. This allows him to meet the handsome Tobias and the two have been in a relationship ever since. Awww, here is a link to the first comic.
- Steven Universe (heavily implied f/f)
Steven Universe is quickly growing to be one of my favorite shows it has a great balance between kid friendly humor and gut wrenching moments. One of the most noteable things about the show is the majority female cast and the increasing hints of romance between them. Actually, they aren’t even hints anymore. The love between characters like Ruby and Sapphire as well as Pearl and Rose, runs deeper than friendship and anyone who says otherwise is clearly in denial
2.Legend of Korra (f/f)
While I have mixed feeling about the Korrasami relationship, as a whole it does deserve a mention and Legend of Korra is a great show! It gave us a lot to cheer about; an awesome female protagonist of color, a great cast, and finally confirming that same sex relations do in fact exists in the world of Avatar.
These are just my personal favorites but of course there are a lot of things that didn’t make this list. So I’ve supplied some master lists other people have compiled.
- Ten Great LGBT Super Heroes
- Recommended LGBT Anime
- Recommended LGBT Web Comics
- Popular LGBT Books on Goodreads