LGBTQ TV

(Photo by © ABC / Courtesy: Everett Collection, Adrian S. Burrows / ©Showtime / Courtesy Everett Collection, Courtesy of Netflix, Pari Dukovic/FX )

175 Essential LGBTQ+ TV Shows  

Updated 5/30/2021

TV has been instrumental in the LGBTQ+ rights movement and in changing attitudes towards the community. It has also, perhaps most importantly, been a platform to tell stories that have made gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex, and more people feel less alone in the world – to know there is a big and varied community to which they belong. One pioneering show at a time, groundbreaking character by groundbreaking character, TV and streaming series have given the world an insight into the LGBTQ+ experience, and provided LGBTQ+ people with reflections of their own lives – stories to laugh along with, to cry with, and to identify with. In this list of essential LGBTQ+ TV shows, we highlight 175 shows that have broken ground, enlightened, and entertained.

We’ve arranged the list into four categories: shows that were big TV firsts, or featured TV firsts; shows that center on LGTBQ characters or experiences; shows that feature LGBTQ+ characters and stories, but where that isn’t necessarily the primary focus or thrust of the series; and reality shows and docuseries. As with all lists like this, even an “essential” one, there will be titles we’ve missed, and you may disagree with some of our categorizations; we encourage you share your thoughts and add your favorites in the comments, so when we do an update, we can have even more great LGBTQ+ titles to consider. 


GROUNDBREAKERS AND BIG FIRSTS

In many ways, nearly all of the series on this list could be called “trailblazers,” “pioneers,” and recognized for their contribution to furthering fuller LGBTQ+ representation on TV and in streaming. But the titles in this first section stand out for breaking boundaries and crossing major milestones. They did so by being the first network superhero TV show with an LGBTQ+ lead (actress and character), as is the case of the CW’s Batwoman, or featuring some of the earliest recurring gay characters on American TV, like Vincent Schiavelli’s Peter Panama on the short-lived The Corner Bar, or Billy Crystal’s Jodie Dallas on Soap. In this section you’ll also find the first Disney Channel show to feature a gay main character (Andi Mack), the first animated show to feature a same-sex marriage proposal (Steven Universe), and Pose, which broke ground with its diverse, largely transgender cast, and for being the series on which Janet Mock became the first transgender woman of color to direct and write an episode of television.

Andi Mack (2017)

#175
Synopsis: Life goes from routine to a roller-coaster ride overnight for artistic teenager Andi Mack. It all happens on the eve... [More]

Batwoman: Season 1 (2019)
80%

#174
Adjusted Score: -1%
Critics Consensus: Though it needs more time to develop its own identity to truly soar, Batwoman's fun and stylish first season is a step in the right direction for representation and superhero shows alike.

Boy Meets Girl (2009)
33%

#173
Synopsis: A DIY man wakes up one day and finds himself trapped in the body of a thirty-something woman.... [More]

()
%

#172

Ellen (1994)

#171
Synopsis: Ellen works in a Los Angeles bookstore called Buy the Book and hangs around with her friends discussing lovers, work... [More]

#170
Synopsis: The lives and loves of residents of a seedy Baltimore hotel.... [More]

The L Word (2004)
57%

#169
Synopsis: This long-running Showtime series features intertwined stories about the lives and loves of a group of lesbians and bisexuals in... [More]
Directed By: Ilene Chaiken

Modern Family (2009)
85%

#168
Synopsis: Told from the perspective of an unseen documentary filmmaker, the series offers an honest, often-hilarious perspective of family life. Parents... [More]

Noah's Arc (2005)

#167
Synopsis: This drama series follows the lives and relationships of four gay men in Los Angeles. Noah is a struggling screenwriter... [More]

#166
Synopsis: Piper Chapman is a public relations executive with a career and a fiance when her past suddenly catches up to... [More]

Pose (2018)
98%

#165
Synopsis: "Pose" is a drama spotlighting the legends, icons and ferocious house mothers of New York's underground ball culture, a movement... [More]

Queer as Folk (1999)
100%

#164
Synopsis: The lives of three gay men living in Manchester, England.... [More]
Directed By: Russell T. Davies

Queer as Folk (2000)

#163
Synopsis: Set in working-class Pittsburgh, the drama revolves around a group of gay friends and their relationships, careers, loves and ambitions.... [More]
Directed By: Daniel Lipman, Ron Cowen

Sense8 (2015)
86%

#162
Synopsis: Eight strangers around the globe find themselves connected -- first by a violent vision, then by their shared ability to... [More]

Soap (1977)

#161
Synopsis: This classic comedy series is a satire on all the daytime soaps out there. The stories revolve around a rich... [More]

Special (2019)
98%

#160
Synopsis: Actor-writer Ryan O'Connell stars in this semi-autobiographical series based on his memoir. He plays Ryan, a gay man with cerebral... [More]

Steven Universe (2013)
100%

#159
Synopsis: The Crystal Gems are a team of magical beings who are the self-appointed guardians of the universe. Half-human, half-Gem hero... [More]

Tales of the City (2019)
100%

#158
Synopsis: Upon returning to San Francisco, Mary Ann is reunited with her daughter, Shawna, and ex-husband Brian 20 years after leaving... [More]

Transparent (2014)
90%

#157
Synopsis: Mort has a secret that he really wants to tell his three adult children, who are so self-absorbed they don't... [More]
Directed By: Jill Soloway

Will & Grace (1998)

#156
Synopsis: In the original eight-season run of this groundbreaking sitcom, best friends Will, a meticulous corporate lawyer, and Grace, a neurotic... [More]


SHOWS THAT CENTER ON THE LGBTQ+ EXPERIENCE

In this section, we focus on shows whose central character, or multiple central characters, are LGBTQ+, and whose storylines and approach have a distinctly LGBTQ+ focus. You’ll find High Fidelity, in which Zoë Kravitz plays bisexual record store owner Rob; Ryan Murphy’s period gay fantasia, Hollywood; and Twenties, Lena Waithe’s semi-autobiographical BET series. HBO’s short-lived but long-loved Looking, which followed the lives of three gay San Francisco men, is here, too, along with Lana and Lilly Wachowski and J. Michael Straczynski’s envelope-pushing Sense8, and Vida, about two Mexican-American sisters living in L.A. The list also features a group of LGBTQ+ comedians who crafted smart, critically acclaimed, funny, and moving shows around their own personas, among them Josh Thomas (Please Like Me), Mae Martin (Feel Good), Tig Notaro (One Mississippi), and Abby McEnany (Work In Progress).

AJ and the Queen (2020)
52%

#155
Synopsis: Robert, a down-on-his-luck drag queen who performs as Ruby Red, prepares for a new adventure, heading out on a journey... [More]

Angels in America (2003)
90%

#154
Synopsis: Adapted from Tony Kushner's award-winning plays about social, sexual, religious and other issues facing 1980s America as the AIDS crisis... [More]
Directed By: Mike Nichols

()
%

#153

Banana (2015)
100%

#152
Synopsis: Through eight stand-alone stories, this series follows different aspects of LGBT life. Each episode focuses on the unique storyline of... [More]

Betty (2020)
98%

#151
Synopsis: Young women navigate the predominantly male-oriented world of skateboarding in New York City.... [More]

Bonding (2019)
71%

#150
Synopsis: Tiff is a grad student in New York City who is moonlighting as a dominatrix. For Tiff, her sexually explicit... [More]

Broad City (2014)
99%

#149
Synopsis: The critically acclaimed Web series "Broad City" moves to Comedy Central as a half-hour scripted series. It's created by and... [More]

Cucumber (2015)
91%

#148
Synopsis: Russell T. Davies writes this drama exploring the many facets of contemporary sex culture. "Cucumber" delves into 21st-century gay life... [More]
Directed By: David Evans

Dickinson (2019)
87%

#147
Synopsis: Budding writer Emily Dickinson uses her outsider's perspective to explore the constraints of society, gender and family in the 19th... [More]

Difficult People (2015)
96%

#146
Synopsis: Life is really tough for Julie and Billy, two 30-something aspiring comics living and working in New York City. While... [More]


EastSiders (2012)

#144
Synopsis: A young gay couple battles infidelity and substance abuse in Los Angeles.... [More]

#143
Synopsis: Nicholas is a neurotic twenty-something visiting his dad and teenage half-sisters, one of whom is on the autism spectrum. When... [More]

Feel Good (2020)
100%

#142
Synopsis: Recovering addict and comic Mae tries to control the addictive behaviors and intense romanticism that permeate her life; her efforts... [More]

Gentleman Jack (2019)
90%

#141
Synopsis: It's 1832 in West Yorkshire, England -- the cradle of the evolving Industrial Revolution -- where landowner Anne Lister is... [More]

Halston (2021)
65%

#140
Synopsis: Iconic American fashion designer Halston skyrockets to fame before his life starts to spin out of control.... [More]

High Fidelity (2020)
86%

#139
Synopsis: Rob, a record-store owner in the rapidly gentrified Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn, revisits past relationships through music and pop... [More]

Hightown (2020)
80%

#138
Synopsis: After a body washes ashore during a holiday weekend, a National Marine Fisheries officer is caught up in a web... [More]

Hollywood (2020)
58%

#137
Synopsis: In post-World War II Hollywood, aspiring actors and filmmakers will do almost anything to make their showbiz dreams come true.... [More]

#136
Synopsis: A teenager navigates the complexities of high school, family and her sexuality while dealing with new superpowers; based on Charles... [More]

It's a Sin (2021)
98%

#135
Synopsis: Ritchie, Colin and Roscoe leave home at 18 to begin new lives in 1981 London, but they find themselves challenged... [More]

Killing Eve (2018)
89%

#134
Synopsis: Eve's life as a spy is not adding up to what she had hoped it would be when she started.... [More]

Looking (2014)
90%

#133
Synopsis: Three best friends living in San Francisco share the nuances and complexities of contemporary gay relationships as they explore a... [More]
Directed By: Andrew Haigh, Sarah Condon

Los Espookys (2019)
100%

#132
Synopsis: A primarily Spanish-language comedy (with English subtitles), the series follows the adventures of Renaldo, a horror and gore enthusiast who... [More]

Love, Victor (2020)
95%

#131
Synopsis: "Love, Victor" is set in the world of the groundbreaking movie, "Love, Simon," which was inspired by Becky Albertalli's acclaimed... [More]

#130
Synopsis: Ten years after the previous events, the original group of friends is joined by new faces as they continue their... [More]

One Mississippi (2015)
96%

#129
Synopsis: This Amazon original series is a dark comedy inspired by events in comic Tig Notaro's life. Starring as a Los... [More]
Directed By: Diablo Cody, Tig Notaro

The Other Two (2019)
94%

#128
Synopsis: Former "Saturday Night Live" head writers Chris Kelly and Sarah Schneider are the creative forces behind "The Other Two," a... [More]

Please Like Me (2013)
100%

#127
Synopsis: Twentysomething Josh is going through a number of big changes as he navigates his first decade of adulthood. After being... [More]

The Politician (2019)
48%

#126
Synopsis: Wealthy high school student Payton Hobart has known since he was 7 years old that he is going to be... [More]

Queers (2017)

#125
Synopsis: "Queers" takes a look at the lives of gay men and women in the U.K. This new project runs eight... [More]
Directed By: Mark Gatiss

Schitt's Creek (2015)
93%

#124
Synopsis: In the sitcom "Schitt's Creek," a wealthy couple -- video store magnate Johnny and his soap opera star wife Moira... [More]

Torchwood (2006)
94%

#123
Synopsis: This series is set inside a branch of a covert agency called the Torchwood Institute, where dashing commander in chief... [More]

Trinkets (2019)
56%

#122
Synopsis: A grieving teenager finds an unexpected connection with two classmates at her new high school when they all land in... [More]

Twenties (2020)
88%

#121
Synopsis: A black woman in her 20s named Hattie and her two straight best friends, Mari and Nia, chase their dreams... [More]

Vida (2018)
100%

#120
Synopsis: "Vida" is a drama series about two Mexican-American siblings from East Los Angeles. Party girl Lyn lives a carefree life... [More]

Veneno (2020)
100%

#119
Synopsis: The true life story of Spanish transgender singer and TV personality Cristina Ortiz Rodríguez, better known by the nickname "La... [More]

#118
Synopsis: Starring Golden Globe-nominated actor Hugh Grant and based on a true story, "A Very English Scandal" tells the story of... [More]

#117
Synopsis: Contemporary revival of a classic Australian prison drama series.... [More]

When We Rise (2017)
82%

#116
Synopsis: Academy-Award winner Dustin Lance Black executive produces this miniseries chronicling the real-life personal and political struggles, setbacks, and triumphs of... [More]

Work in Progress (2019)
100%

#115
Synopsis: At 45-years-old, Abby begins to re-evaluate her life and perspective after her misfortune and despair lead her to a transformative... [More]


SHOWS WITH LGBTQ+ STORYLINES AND CHARACTERS

A number of shows that don’t focus exclusively or centrally on LGBTQ+ characters or storylines, but which do have story arcs and standout LGBTQ+ characters in their ensembles, have done great things for representation. Think Sara Ramirez’s Dr. Callie Torres in Grey’s Anatomy, Asia Kate Dillon’s non-binary Taylor Mason in Billions, Wilson Cruz’s Ricki Vasquez on My So-Called Life or, for that matter, an all-grown-up Wilson Cruz’s Dr. Hugh Culber, whose relationship with Anthony Rapp’s Lt. Commander Paul Stamets forms the heart of Paramount+ series Star Trek: Discovery. In this list, you’ll also find Buffy the Vampire Slayer, on which couple Willow and Tara featured in TV’s first lesbian sex scene (albeit a suggestive, tame one), and a number of recent sitcoms that have challenged stereotypes about gay men and masculinity (Brooklyn Nine NineHappy EndingsIt’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia). In recent years we’ve seen more trans actors cast in trans roles, too, playing full and rich characters such as Margo Fairchild (Jen Richards) in Mrs. Fletcher and Jules (Hunter Schafer) in Euphoria. And progressive showrunners have been ensuring representation is a priority in genre, with superhero series such as ArrowDoom PatrolThe FlashJessica JonesDC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and more populating their action-packed series with LGBTQ+ heroes, sidekicks, and villains.

9-1-1: Lone Star (2020)
75%

#114
Synopsis: Nearly 20 years ago, Owen Strand was the lone survivor of his Manhattan firehouse on 9/11, and in the wake... [More]

Adventure Time (2010)
100%

#113
Synopsis: Twelve-year-old Finn battles evil in the Land of Ooo. Assisted by his magical dog, Jake, Finn roams the Land of... [More]
Directed By: Fred Seibert

American Gods (2017)
77%

#112
Synopsis: Ex-convict Shadow Moon roams a world he doesn't understand, left adrift by the recent, tragic death of his wife. Little... [More]

#111
Synopsis: "American Horror Story" was created by the co-creators of "Glee," but the shows have little in common besides that. The... [More]

#110
Synopsis: After a heroin overdose kills his mom, Joshua "J" Cody moves to Southern California to live with his freewheeling relatives.... [More]

Arrow (2012)
86%

#109
Synopsis: When presumed-dead billionaire playboy Oliver Queen returns home to Starling City after five years stranded on a remote island in... [More]

Billions (2016)
89%

#108
Synopsis: Wealth, influence and corruption collide in this drama set in New York. Shrewd U.S. Attorney Chuck Rhoades is embroiled in... [More]

Black Lightning (2018)
92%

#107
Synopsis: CW and Greg Berlanti expand the footprint of their DC Comics universe with this exploration of the intersection between family... [More]

The Bold Type (2017)
91%

#106
Synopsis: Putting together a magazine is not an easy task, requiring a lot of teamwork to finish the job and get... [More]

Brooklyn Nine-Nine (2013)
96%

#105
Synopsis: The detectives of Brooklyn's 99th Precinct -- hotshot Jake Peralta, overachiever Amy Santiago, tough-as-nails Rosa Diaz, sweetheart Charles Boyle, devoted... [More]

#104
Synopsis: Sarah Michelle Gellar takes on the role of Buffy Summers in this TV version of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," based... [More]

Cable Girls (2017)

#103
Synopsis: It's the 1920s and Spain has just gotten its first national telephone company, located in Madrid. For four young women... [More]

Castlevania (2017)
94%

#102
Synopsis: Inspired by the popular video game series, this anime series is a dark medieval fantasy. It follows the last surviving... [More]

Synopsis: This adaptation of the "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" tale is a dark coming-of-age story that traffics in horror and the... [More]

The Comeback (2005)
73%

#100
Synopsis: "The Comeback" tells the story of a B-list sitcom star so desperate to revive her career that she agrees to... [More]

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (2015)
98%

#99
Synopsis: Successful and driven, Rebecca Bunch seemingly has it all -- an upscale apartment in Manhattan and a partnership at a... [More]

Daybreak (2019)
70%

#98
Synopsis: Navigating a post-apocalyptic world full of zombies and "Mad Max"-style gangs, a teenage outcast searches for his lost love.... [More]

#97
Synopsis: "Arrow" and "The Flash" have some new superhero company in the CW's lineup with the addition of "DC's Legends of... [More]

Dear White People (2017)
95%

#96
Synopsis: Based on the acclaimed film of the same name, this Netflix-original series follows a group of students of color at... [More]

Synopsis: Students encounter common high school issues.... [More]
Directed By: Matt Huether

#94
Synopsis: "Dispatches From Elsewhere" is an anthology series from creator and star Jason Segal. The story centers around four ordinary people... [More]

Doom Patrol (2019)
97%

#93
Synopsis: Doom Patrol is a team of traumatized and downtrodden superheroes, each of whom has suffered a horrible accident that gave... [More]

Easy (2016)
90%

#92
Synopsis: From director and creator Joe Swanberg, this Netflix-original comedy anthology series explores diverse Chicago characters, modern romance technology and culture.... [More]
Starring:
Directed By: Joe Swanberg

Elite (2018)
97%

#91
Synopsis: When three working-class teens enroll in an exclusive private school in Spain, the clash between them and the wealthy students... [More]

Empire (2015)
84%

#90
Synopsis: Hip-hop artist and CEO of Empire Entertainment, Lucious Lyon, has always ruled unchallenged, but a medical diagnosis predicts he will... [More]

Euphoria (2019)
90%

#89
Synopsis: An American adaptation of the Israeli show of the same name, "Euphoria" follows the troubled life of 17-year-old Rue, a... [More]

The Flash (2014)
89%

#88
Synopsis: At 11, Barry Allen's life changed completely when his mother died in a freak accident and his innocent father was... [More]

For All Mankind (2019)
87%

#87
Synopsis: Exploring the possibilities that might exist if the global space race had continued.... [More]

The Fosters (2013)
97%

#86
Synopsis: Stef, a dedicated police officer, is in a relationship with Lena. The two have built a close-knit family with Stef's... [More]

Genera+ion (2021)
74%

#85
Synopsis: High school students explore modern sexuality, testing deeply entrenched beliefs about life, love and the nature of family in their... [More]

Girls5eva (2021)
98%

#84
Synopsis: When a one-hit-wonder girl group from the 1990s gets sampled by a young rapper, its members reunite to give their... [More]

Glee (2009)
70%

#83
Synopsis: Optimistic teacher Will Schuester heads up McKinley High School's glee club -- New Directions -- a place where ambitious and... [More]

GLOW (2017)
92%

#82
Synopsis: Alison Brie stars as Ruth Wilder, an out-of-work actress living in Los Angeles in the '80s. Wilder finds an unexpected... [More]

Good Trouble (2019)

#81
Synopsis: "Good Trouble" follows Callie and Mariana as they embark on the next adventure in their lives in Los Angeles. Mariana... [More]

Grace and Frankie (2016)
88%

#80
Synopsis: For as long as they can recall, Grace and Frankie have been rivals. Their one-upmanship comes crashing to a halt,... [More]

Grey's Anatomy (2005)
84%

#79
Synopsis: The medical drama series focuses on a group of doctors at a hospital in Seattle, including several who began their... [More]

Hacks (2021)
100%

#78
Synopsis: A dark mentorship forms between Deborah Vance, a legendary Las Vegas comic, and an entitled, outcast 25-year-old comedy writer.... [More]

Halt and Catch Fire (2014)
90%

#77
Synopsis: It's the early 1980s, and the spirit of innovation in personal computing is about to catch fire. Hot on the... [More]

The Handmaid's Tale (2017)
83%

#76
Synopsis: Based on the best-selling novel by Margaret Atwood, this series is set in Gilead, a totalitarian society in what used... [More]

Happy Endings (2011)
76%

#75
Synopsis: For years, perfect couple Dave and Alex were the core of their group of friends, holding them all together. But... [More]

Synopsis: Annalise Keating (Oscar- and Tony-winning actress Viola Davis), a brilliant, charismatic and seductive professor of defense law, teaches a class... [More]

I May Destroy You (2020)
98%

#73
Synopsis: After being sexually assaulted in a nightclub, Arabella's life changes irreversibly and she is forced to reassess everything, including her... [More]

Synopsis: Depraved underachieving might look easy, but for the egocentric Mac, Charlie, Dennis, Frank and Dee, it's an art form. "It's... [More]

#71
Synopsis: This romantic comedy involves Alan Buttershaw and Celia Dawson, two 70-something widowed people. After their respective grandsons put their profiles... [More]
Directed By: Nicola Shindler

Limetown (2019)
71%

#70
Synopsis: Journalist Lia Haddock attempts to solve the mystery behind the disappearance of over 300 people at a neuroscience research facility... [More]

Little America (2020)
95%

#69
Synopsis: An anthology of funny, romantic, heartfelt, inspiring, and surprising stories about the lives of immigrants in the United States.... [More]
Starring:

#68
Synopsis: The intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and an enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.... [More]

Lovecraft Country (2020)
88%

#67
Synopsis: Atticus Black joins his friend Letitia and his Uncle George to embark on a road trip across 1950s Jim Crow... [More]

The Magicians (2015)
91%

#66
Synopsis: Quentin Coldwater, a grad student at Brakebills College for Magical Pedagogy, has been fascinated by the magical fantasy world since... [More]

#65
Synopsis: This Netflix original chronicles the life of one of the darker Marvel characters, the mysterious Jessica Jones. When a tragedy... [More]

Master of None (2015)
93%

#64
Synopsis: Comic Aziz Ansari and writer Alan Yang are the creators of this Netflix-original comedy, which is loosely based on Ansari's... [More]

Masters of Sex (2013)
84%

#63
Synopsis: William Masters and Virginia Johnson are known as pioneers of the science of human sexuality. Their research shoots them to... [More]

Melrose Place (2009)
60%

#62
Synopsis: This update of the popular 1992 soap features a new group of diverse 20-somethings living in an elegant Spanish-style apartment... [More]

Mindhunter (2017)
97%

#61
Synopsis: Catching a criminal often requires the authorities to get inside the villain's mind to figure out how he thinks. That's... [More]

Mom (2013)

#60
Synopsis: Bonnie, a recovering alcoholic, focuses on her marriage to her husband, Adam, and on what she wants to be now... [More]

Money Heist (2017)
92%

#59
Synopsis: A criminal mastermind who goes by "The Professor" has a plan to pull off the biggest heist in recorded history... [More]

#58
Synopsis: Three young witches with basic training in combat magic prepare to defend the country against looming terrorist threats by using... [More]

Mrs. America (2020)
96%

#57
Synopsis: "Mrs. America" tells the story of the movement to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), and the unexpected backlash led... [More]

Mrs. Fletcher (2019)
82%

#56
Synopsis: A divorced woman jumpstarts her love life by adopting a sexy new persona and discovers that her world is full... [More]

My So-Called Life (1994)
95%

#55
Synopsis: "My So-Called Life" is a bastion of teen angst. Angela is a high schooler in constant turmoil over her exposure... [More]

Nashville (2012)
91%

#54
Synopsis: After two decades as the reigning queen of country music, Rayna Jaymes (Connie Britton) is faced with pressure to adapt... [More]

The OA (2016)
84%

#53
Synopsis: In addition to her role as creator and executive producer of this mind-bending series, Brit Marling also plays the role... [More]

One Day at a Time (2017)
99%

#52
Synopsis: This comedy-drama is inspired by Norman Lear's 1975 series of the same name. This time around, the series follows the... [More]

Orphan Black (2013)
93%

#51
Synopsis: Sarah is a street-wise woman with a troubled past as an English orphan who bounced around foster homes before being... [More]

Oz (1997)
92%

#50
Synopsis: Inmates and correctional officers inside the Oswald State Correctional Facility, nicknamed "Oz," battle for power and survival amid warring factions... [More]

Ratched (2020)
61%

#49
Synopsis: A young nurse at a mental institution becomes jaded and bitter before turning into a full-fledged monster to her patients.... [More]

Riverdale (2017)
86%

#48
Synopsis: Archie Andrews starts the school year with the world weighing on his shoulders. He's decided he wants to pursue a... [More]

Secret City (2016)
100%

#47
Synopsis: Beneath the peaceful facade of Canberra, there is a secret city of deals and divided loyalties, lies and opportunism. Political... [More]

Sex Education (2019)
96%

#46
Synopsis: Socially awkward high school student Otis may not have much experience in the lovemaking department, but he gets good guidance... [More]

Shadow and Bone (2021)
88%

#45
Synopsis: Sinister forces plot against a young soldier after she reveals a magical power that may unite her world.... [More]

Shameless (2004)

#44
Synopsis: The lives of the dysfunctional Gallagher family.... [More]

Shameless (2010)
82%

#43
Synopsis: Oscar-nominated actor William H. Macy stars as Frank Gallagher, a single father of six who spends much of his free... [More]
Directed By: John Wells

Shadowhunters (2016)
76%

#42
Synopsis: On her birthday, Clary Fray discovers a surprise concerning her life. The teenager is not who she thinks she is... [More]

Synopsis: In this reboot of the 1980s series, a magic sword transforms an orphan girl into warrior She-Ra, who unites a... [More]

Siren (2018)

#40
Synopsis: Legend has it that Bristol Cove was once home to mermaids. Now, this coastal town has a mysterious new visitor... [More]

Six Feet Under (2001)
81%

#39
Synopsis: Laced with irony and dark situational humor, the show approaches the subject of death through the eyes of the Fisher... [More]
Directed By: Alan Ball

Skins (UK) (2008)

#38
Synopsis: ... [More]
Starring:

Smash (2012)
68%

#37
Synopsis: A successful songwriting duo of industry veterans, Julia and Tom have an opportunity to create another Broadway hit, but making... [More]

Soulmates (2020)
73%

#36
Synopsis: In the very near future, a test is developed that incontrovertibly lets a person know who their soulmate is. The... [More]

#35
Synopsis: Created by Bryan Fuller and Alex Kurtzman for CBS All Access, the story of "Star Trek: Discovery" begins roughly a... [More]

Star Trek: Picard (2020)
87%

#34
Synopsis: Retired admiral Jean-Luc Picard -- still deeply affected by the loss of Lieutenant Commander Data and the destruction of Romulus... [More]

Supergirl (2015)
90%

#33
Synopsis: At 12 years old, Kara Zor-El escapes doom on planet Krypton to find protection on Earth with the Danver family,... [More]

Sweetbitter (2018)
56%

#32
Synopsis: A new life awaits 22-year-old Tess when she arrives friendless in New York City and lacking any specific ambitions beyond... [More]

This Is Us (2016)
93%

#31
Synopsis: The Pearson family's generational story unfolds in this emotional drama. In moments of love, joy, triumph and heartbreak, revelations emerge... [More]

True Blood (2008)
70%

#30
Synopsis: Small-town Louisiana waitress Sookie Stackhouse already is viewed as an oddball by her friends and neighbors, since she can read... [More]
Directed By: Alan Ball

Ugly Betty (2006)
97%

#29
Synopsis: The series focuses on the life of wannabe writer Betty Suarez, a plain girl from Queens, N.Y., who is smart,... [More]

#28
Synopsis: On one day in 1989, 43 infants are inexplicably born to random, unconnected women who showed no signs of pregnancy... [More]

#27
Synopsis: Rescued after 15 years in a cult, Kimmy Schmidt decides to reclaim her life by venturing to New York, where... [More]

Versailles (2015)
57%

#26
Synopsis: It's 1667 and 28-year-old King Louis XIV has finally taken over sole command of France. When he commissions Versailles, Europe's... [More]
Directed By: Jalil Lespert

The Wire (2002)
94%

#25
Synopsis: This series looks at the narcotics scene in Baltimore through the eyes of law enforcers as well as the drug... [More]

Wynonna Earp (2016)
92%

#24
Synopsis: Wynonna Earp has been away from her hometown, Purgatory, for years but returns to reluctantly take on the role that... [More]

Years and Years (2019)
89%

#23
Synopsis: An ordinary British family contends with the hopes, anxieties and joys of an uncertain future in this six-part limited series... [More]


REALITY SHOWS AND DOCUSERIES

LGBTQ+ representation on TV has been advanced through reality shows — both competition and otherwise — and documentaries, even those that aren’t explicitly billed as queer: MTV’s The Real World was a groundbreaker for gay and lesbian representation, and Project Runway has spotlighted the talents of dozens of LGBTQ creatives. In this list you’ll find the queen of them all, RuPaul’s Drag Race, along with some more hidden-gem reality competitions to check out, among them TRANSform Me, hosted by Laverne Cox, and The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula. Also here: insightful docuseries like Gaycation, in which Ellen Page explores different LGBTQ+ cultures across the planet, and Apple TV+’s Visible: Out on Television, which dives into the impact that television — including some of the shows on this list — has had on the community and how it is perceived.

()
%

#22

Synopsis: Comic Billy Eichner transitions his man-on-the-street-style interviews that first became popular via the Funny or Die website to TV, roaming... [More]
Starring: Billy Eichner

Synopsis: The Boulet Brothers host a competition for drag performers with dark themes and challenges.... [More]
Starring:

Synopsis: They're not typical farmers in the least, but Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Dr. Brent Ridge hope their entrepreneurial spirit makes up... [More]

Gaycation (2016)

#18
Synopsis: Openly gay actress Ellen Page heads out, with best friend Ian Daniel, on a journey to explore various LGBTQ cultures... [More]
Directed By: William Fairman

Gayme Show! (2020)
93%

#17
Synopsis: Matt Rogers and Dave Mizzoni host as two straight contestants compete in a series of physical, mental, and performance challenges... [More]

I Am Cait (2015)
86%

#16
Synopsis: Caitlyn Jenner's first public appearance since her transition included making an impassioned, heartfelt speech at the ESPY Awards about the... [More]
Starring: Caitlyn Jenner
Directed By: Andrea Metz

I Am Jazz (2015)

#15
Synopsis: When Jazz Jennings was 2 years old, she asked her mother when a fairy was going to change her from... [More]

The Lady and the Dale (2021)
100%

#14
Synopsis: The story of Elizabeth Carmichael, who released a fuel-efficient vehicle during the 1970s gas crisis; as she wins over major... [More]
Starring:

Legendary (2020)
91%

#13
Synopsis: Pulling from the underground ballroom community, voguing teams, called "Houses," compete in dance challenges and showcase fashions for chance to... [More]

Synopsis: A dance team based in Mobile, Ala., the Prancing Elites face more obstacles than similar troupes as they work for... [More]

Pride (2021)
100%

#11
Synopsis: "PRIDE" is a documentary series chronicling the struggle for LGBTQ+ civil rights in America from the 1950s through the 2000s.... [More]
Starring:


Queer Eye (2018)
93%

#9
Synopsis: More than a decade after the original series went off the air, Netflix reboots the "Queer Eye" franchise with a... [More]

Synopsis: Gay men give advice on fashion, grooming, interior design, food, wine and culture to straight men.... [More]

#7
Synopsis: Seven young adults share close living quarters.... [More]
Starring: Janelle Casanave
Directed By: Kasey Barrett

Transcendent (2015)

#6
Synopsis: From the producers of Fuse's highest-rated series, "Big Freedia," comes a reality docuseries focusing on a 21st-century cultural perspective: what... [More]
Starring:

TRANSform Me (2010)

#5
Synopsis: Helping women make changes from the inside out, each episode of this show follows one person in need of a... [More]

#4
Synopsis: In this offshoot (sort of) of Showtime's drama series "The L Word," cameras follow lesbians in Los Angeles and New... [More]

RuPaul's Drag Race (2009)
83%

#3
Synopsis: Drag queens compete to be the last contestant standing.... [More]

Synopsis: The history of the LGBTQ movement through the lens of American TV; combining archival footage and interviews, a look at... [More]
Starring:

We're Here (2020)
100%

#1
Synopsis: Drag queens recruit and train small-town residents to participate in a one-night-only drag performance.... [More]

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