From Doctor Who and Star Trek to Buffy and Wynonna Earp, sci-fi has been one of the more consistent places we, as queer people, have been able to find ourselves on TV over the past few decades. I think the reason is a combination of people who write sci-fi and fantasy already connecting with the “outsider” themes and therefore inherently include more minority groups, we Autostraddle outsiders sometimes being the ones writing said stories, and because it’s likely a little easier to pitch “also there are lesbians” when you’ve already been approved for “a woman sees herself jump in front of a train and then realizes she’s a human clone.”
Sci-fi and fantasy have always been my favorite genres, ever since I was a wee child watching Ghostwriter or Power Rangers. I liked the escape and the magic and the limitless possibilities, and I still do. So honestly even though I think this took longer than writing my final paper for grad school, I had a lot of fun doing this research and seeing how far we’ve come (and how far we’ve yet go to) when it comes to representation.
I had an overly complicated ranking system, and a very intense, annotated spreadsheet that was maybe entirely unnecessary, but helped me be sure I was putting as many FACTS into this list as I was heart. So while I used my own judgement for tiebreakers, to get a general idea of order, I awarded points as follows:
Every show got 0-3 points based on quantity of queer women characters. (0 = throwaway lines/my dad wouldn’t have registered it as queer, 3 = more than one main character or 3+ queer characters over the course of the series.)
Then they got judged on quality, also on a 0-3 scale. (0 = a nameless witness mentions her wife while giving her account to the police and is never seen again, 3 = high-quality storyline, rich character development, no buried gays.)
I awarded one point for each of the following achievements: the show had a character on Carmen and Natalie’s Top 100 Queer and Trans Women of Color Television Characters in TV History, I could find an out queer and/or trans actor or writer with a reasonable amount of research, the show being critically acclaimed by mainstream critics, and the show being critically acclaimed by queerstream crirics.
And maybe this will be controversial, but despite the fact that sci-fi is the first type of show to claim “everyone dies” in equal amounts, I still removed one whole point for every single dead queer female or non-binary character. Because we’re not at a point yet where it doesn’t count. The only time a dead queer woman did not count against a show is if their death didn’t mean they were no longer on the show. Since it’s sci-fi/fantasy we’re talking about here, often a person would die but their ghost would hang around, or they’d die but be resurrected; that’s fine. As long as the character is still on the show, I didn’t take away a point.
And finally, I had our TV Team here at Autostraddle give their faves a rating of 1-5, with the ability to give out ten 10s. Because it doesn’t matter how perfect a story is on paper if actual queer people didn’t like or connect to it.
And before you Ctrl + F for She-Ra or Carmilla: I didn’t include cartoons because I think they belong in their own special category, and I only included original series produced by streaming services (aka Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, DCU, YouTube Premium originals) but not webseries, because those also would need a list of their own. Also this isn’t an exhaustive list of all the sci-fi/fantasy shows of all time that have ever had so much as a queer character, it’s just the top 100.
I would like to thank Riese’s exhaustive TV database for giving me a foundation to start on, Carmen and Natalie for giving me an idea for point structure, and sites like LezWatchTV, LGBT Fans Deserve Better, and Wikipedia for being invaluable sources of information, plus any help/input from friends (and my dad) I got along the way. Also shout out to the folks who keep fan wikis up to date, you’re the real MVPs.
I think those are all the caveats.
Oh wait, one more thing: This is for fun! While based on a fuckton of reading and watching and learning, and a lifetime of experience consuming sci-fi, this is a rating system I made up! While I feel like my hours of research and toiling makes for a fairly accurate list of 100, when it comes down to it, the difference between the #15 show and the #10 show could have just been how many people on the TV Team saw it. This is mostly a space to discuss all 100 of these times we’ve been represented in the genre. I do HIGHLY encourage you to make your case for why your favorite show should be higher on the list in the comments; just remember that this doesn’t actually have any bearing on anything besides our hearts, so please be kind to each other about it, okay? Sara Lance doesn’t keep coming back to life just so you can set each other on fire.
Okay, without further ado… the top 100 Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV Shows featuring lesbian, bisexual, queer and/or trans characters OF ALL TIME!
100. The Exorcist (2016 – 2017)
This show practically snuck in on a technicality, because if it wasn’t for out actress Brianna Hildebrand being cast in Season 2, it might have been beaten out by something else. Because to be honest, The Exorcist’s lesbian storyline isn’t…great. Season 1 follows the story of a teenage girl, Katherine Rance, whose family believes is possessed when at first it seems really she’s just depressed that her girlfriend Julia died. Which she did. After a heartbeat of screentime. But here the show is, because technically it had a queer main character, and hey at least SHE survived.
99. Krypton (2018 – 2019)
This is another show that only really made the list because their queer character was in the main cast. Nyssa-Vex was a main character, in all 20 episodes of the series, but her ex-girlfriend Araame (who apparently cheated on her in their relationship that happened entirely before the events of the show) got shot to death. That said, Nyssa-Vex was a fierce warrior, and would eventually become Superman’s grandmother, so I’m not too mad at her being on the list of badass bisexuals.
98. Supernatural (2005 – Present)
This is probably the lowest Supernatural has ever been on anyone’s TV list, given that it’s been around for 900 years (okay fine 15 seasons), but they sure like to kill off their queer characters. There was Jenna Nickerson, who got killed by a demon baby. Then Lily Baker and her girlfriend, because Lily killed her girlfriend by accident, and then eventually was hanged by a demon. But their saving grace was Charlie. Even though she only appeared on 11 of the 327 episodes, and even though she got hella dead, Felicia Day’s charm really stood out. Even when she wasn’t kissing fairies. An alternate reality version of her came back to the show for a bit, but all in all, with the sheer quantity of episodes, you’d think we’d have more to report re: queer female characters on this show.
97. The Last Ship (2014 – 2018)
Lt. Alisha Granderson made it four and a half whole seasons being a lesbian on a sci-fi/post-apocalyptic show, taking charge and taking names, before she ultimately met her end at the hands of her girlfriend, Kelsi. Alisha realized Kelsi was a baddie so Kelsi stabbed her to death. Kelsi made it sound like her feelings for Alisha were real, but that doesn’t really matter much now. Kelsi ended up dying too, and while I promise eventually we’ll get to shows that haven’t killed 100% of their queer characters, but I will warn you that literally 40 of our 100 shows have at least one Bury Your Gays offense.
96. Hemlock Grove (2013 – 2015)
One thing I noticed while doing this research was that sometimes an actor has a BEAT. For example, Kandyse McClure, who plays Clementine Chasseur on Hemlock Grove, is on like 10 shows on this list alone. Unfortunately, Clementine also has the distinct pleasure of having her skin eaten off her body and then suffocated to be put out of her misery. She was focused and serious and kept people at arm’s length, emotionally. Clementine sought out Destiny, a fortune-teller, for some answers, and they shared an intense spiritual connection that lead to a physical connection. Though after their…connection was over, Clementine left money to ensure Destiny knew it was nothing more than sex. Unfortunately Destiny was eventually murdered too; but while she lasted, she was a strong, loyal woman who would do anything to protect the people she cared about.
95. The I-Land (2019)
Black Mirror meets Lost in this widely-hated Netflix miniseries, but hey they had a lesbian character (Blair, who does doing her best Mary Kills People impression, which is what landed her in the prison simulation) and they didn’t kill her, so here we are, in a respectable (?) 97th place. (And actually the flashback they gave her where she remembered she had a wife was very sweet and cute.)
94. Dominion (2014 – 2015)
This show has true love and fake love, queer humans and archangels, deception and WINGS. Technically Uriel dies between Seasons 1 and 2, but it happens off-screen, so it’s not AS terrible as it could have been? And Akira is still quite queer and in love (for real this time) with a nurse named Daria. It’s a strange, fantastical show, but I have mentioned the wings.
93. Dante’s Cove (2004 – 2007)
A truly bonkers supernatural soap opera, what’s unique about Dante’s Cove is that it was a made up of largely LGBTQ+ characters, and a good number of the actors were queer, too. However, it was mostly centered around men, and since it was whackadoo, a lot of the characters ended up dying. This show had a whopping five queer women on it, and my favorite of the three deaths was listed on Riese’s Dead Character List was, and I quote, “killed by the shadows.”
92. Hex (2006 – 2007)
Hex starts out by turning the tropes on its head — technically the lesbian dies, but she ends up staying on in a huge capacity as a ghost for the rest of the series. She does eventually get a ghosty girlfriend so she can stop invading her roommate’s dreams to get her rocks off, though that doesn’t end particularly well for anyone involved. But in the meantime this show has British accents, boarding school, witches, fallen angels, and so much more.
91. The Expanse (2015 – Present)
This out-of-this-world adventure series (see what I did there) has already lost one queer character, though to be honest they didn’t do a great job of declaring her queerness; if it wasn’t for Julie Mao’s dating profile, we may have never known she identified as pansexual. Unfortunately she died in the Massacre of 2016, along with too many other queer characters. Season Three, however, boasted Elizabeth Mitchell as Reverend Doctor Anna Volodov, who has a wife, and is still alive. Small victories.
90. Swamp Thing (2019)
This short-lived DC venture didn’t quite make it to Arrow-status but it did gift us Liz Tremayne, intrepid reporter, and her girlfriend, Margaux, a shrimp fisherwoman. They are cute, and I would say it was a shame it got cancelled before people could get a handle on how even to watch things on the DC Universe website, but Jennifer Beals was in that show, and we all know she’s moved on to better things now.
89. Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams (2017 – 2018)
It’s always nice when an anthology series thinks of us, and in this case one of the ten episodes of this series has Anna Paquin, known bisexual, playing a woman with PTSD whose wife gets her a virtual reality simulator to help her through it. However, the character she becomes in this VR world, George, thinks HE’S in the simulator and that the woman, Sarah, is the character. Hello, existential crisis, nice to see you again.
88. Ghost Wars (2017 – 2018)
In this short-lived venture, Beck from Victorious investigates supernatural happenings in a creepy-ass town. Wives Marilyn and Val become reluctant believers when their daughters get tangled up in the ghosty goings-on and they have to do everything they can to save their family. This is one of those instances where on paper this seems ideal, but considering the show was cancelled after one season, and no one on the TV team saw it, I’m not sure it hit audiences the way it hoped.
87. Falling Water (2016 – 2018)
As someone who often has vivid or lucid dreams, this show as a bit of a trip for me. Strangers have trippy, realistic dreams about each other, and about horrible things, and they have to figure out how to use this power to their advantage. Alexis and her girlfriend Christy were the lady-kissers in this series, and FUN FACT Christy was played by Sepideh Moafi aka Gigi from Generation Q. Trans actress Pooya Mohseni also pops up in three episodes as Dr. Duria.
86. Dark Angel (2000 – 2002)
A few years after Buffy arrived in Sunnydale, Jessica Alba cartwheeled onto the scene as Max. By her side from day one was Original Cindy, the funny, no-nonsense best friend, who never shied away from making it clear she was a lesbian. Add to it that she was a woman of color, and Original Cindy is probably more groundbreaking than we give her credit for. That said, her only on-screen love interest, Diamond, was in one episode before she was killed off, but 20 full years ago, the creators of the show fought through two actresses dropping out and network push-back to ensure Original Cindy stayed a lesbian, so I have to give them credit for that.
85. Van Helsing (2016 – Present)
One way you know this list isn’t 100% just me picking an order arbitrarily is because if it were, Van Helsing would be mysteriously missing. But that’s just because I’m a vampire snob and this show’s “vampires” follow practically none of the established vampire lore on my favorite TV shows. And also because they made their title character queer then killed the friend she kissed, Susan, not too long after. However, the lead is still bisexual, which is not nothing, and she’s still a sort of vampire slayer I GUESS, and there are still two lesbians left alive in this canon, Doc and her girlfriend Carol.
84. Babylon 5 (1994 – 1998)
Starting in 1994 makes this one of the earliest shows on the list, so I’m honestly impressed it’s here at all. (Though, its first episode has a woman running for president of Earth against the male incumbent, and she lost to the man whose campaign promised to “preserve Earth cultures in the face of growing non-terran influences” so it may have been ahead of its time.) It’s considered a “space opera,” aka my new favorite phrase, and featured a nice slow burn between Talia Winters and Susan Ivanova. These fierce ladies passed the Bechdel Test the first day they met, which in 1994 And though eventually Talia’s personality was wiped, ending their relationship, their love (and the fanvids) will live on forever.
83. For All Mankind (2019)
This what-if imagining of a future where the space race was more diverse and neverending, this addition to the queer canon is one of the newest shows on the list. Set in the late 60s/early 70s, Ellen the astronaut (played by Jodi Balfour from Bomb Girls) can’t exactly reveal to NASA that she is a lesbian who used to date Pam the bartender. Instead she finds herself a beard (a gay man himself, because the best beards are mutual beards) and shoots for the stars.
82. Nightflyers (2018 – 2019)
A lesser-known adaptation of George R. R. Martin’s writing, Nightflyers is classic “let’s go find aliens, oh shit we found aliens” kind of story. Our queer friends in this are genetically enhanced cadet Melantha Jhirl and Lommie, a gender-fluid cyber technician who would rather port into computers than interact with humans, which is, frankly, relatable. Their relationship is short-lived, not unlike the show itself, but both were main characters and neither of them died, giving them the boost they needed to get to this position in the list.
81. Shadowhunters (2016 – 2019)
Shadowhunters is the classic coming-of-age tale of a girl who discovers not only are supernatural creatures real but also she IS one. It’s also one of those shows where it seems like no one is entirely straight, and also no one is entirely human. It clocks four total queer women Aline Penhallow, Helen Blackthorn, Ollie Wilson, and Samantha. Both couples get a relatively happy ever after; Aline and Helen discussing their future wedding, and Ollie and Samantha going into hiding together. (I said relatively.)
80. The Strain (2014 – 2017)
You might remember The Strain as “the one whose posters were of a worm coming OUT OF AN EYEBALL,”, or maybe you watched and loved seeing Ruta Gedmintas play bisexual hacker Dutch Velders. And despite the entire premise of this show being about people dying from a virus outbreak, somehow she and her ex-girlfriend Nikki survive it. Their on-again/off-again romance is heated and stressful, though short-lived, and includes the too-relatable phrase, “I have always been in love with you and it has never made me happy.”
79. The First (2018)
This show is about the first humans to travel to Mars, and features a black queer astronaut named Kayla Price. Her storyline with her wife Kayla isn’t the most fleshed out story in the world, Kayla IS played by Tracie Thoms, and I can’t be mad at that. Plus they both survive. Cannot emphasize the importance of that enough.
78. Dark Matter (2015 – 2017)
This show is like if someone handed you a handmade gilded plate and you used it to serve chicken nuggets and ketchup. It’s still pretty and still has good structure but goddamn is it a mess. Dark Matter had a lot of great things going for it — one of the leads of the show, Two/Portia Lin, was an absolute badass with some killer fighting skills, and the android on the ship was hilariously executed by lesbian legend Zoie Palmer. But when it came to the queer storylines, it fell short. One was barely a storyline; Two hallucinated kissing her dead shipmate Nyx (and the actress later said they kissed in a friend way :rolls eyes:) and the other was the human that Android, Irena Shaw was based on and Two’s original identity were in love, though Two doesn’t remember loving her. There was also shipmate Solara but she didn’t get nearly enough screentime. We could have had it all, Dark Matter!
77. The Man in the High Castle (2015 – 2019)
This show is another what-if historical re-write but way worse than For All Mankind. This one is: what if the Nazis won. I’m not sure anyone asked for this, but I suppose in 2015 they didn’t realize just how terrifyingly close to home this would become. In this version of reality, homosexuality is illegal, but Nicole and Thelma find themselves drawn to each other and decide to risk it anyway. It…doesn’t go well for them, as I’m sure you can imagine.
76. Travelers (2016 – 2018)
This is a timey wimey, body-jumping, occasionally confusing show where people called Travelers are assigned to inhabit people from the past to help prevent an apocalypse. It is dramatic and exciting an, occasionally, a bit queer. Recurring FBI agent Joanne Yates mentions she has a wife, plus Samantha Burns and her partner Amanda Myers appear in the show’s third and final season, developing an advanced engine that is extremely energy efficient that may or may not eventually wipe out 1.4 billion people. Oops.
75. Smallville (2001 – 2011)
A beloved Superman origin story, Smallville, had many characters that were canonically queer in the comics appear (Maggie Sawyer and Barbara Gordon to name a few) but the only character that was queer on screen was Tina Greer, a shapeshifter who was…well, a psychopath. When she first appeared she became (understandably) obsessed with Lana Lang and set out to BE her. Like actually shapeshift into her and take over her life. But after a stint in jail she realized actually she LOVED Lana and used trickery to try to get her, impersonating people to get closer to her, including Clark. This escapade ended in her death, her last words about Lana.
74. Pandora (2019- Present)
This futuristic venture is centered around Jax, a student at Earth’s Space Training Academy, who is trying to figure out who she is and who she wants to be while defending Earth from threats from anywhere in the galaxy. Along with a band of misfits she joins, because let’s be honest, friendship is always the best part of shows like these. Jax (aka Pandora herself) is queer, along with her ex Cornelia and pansexual clone Atria-Nine.
73. Legend of the Seeker (2008 – 2010)
Tagged as “swords and sorcery” on Wikipedia, which I think is my kink, this show is high-fantasy with killer costumes, Bridget Regan, and, though only on for two seasons, queers! Main character Cara Mason is another bisexual badass for the books, and for a while is in a relationship with aother Mord-Sith (long story) named Dahlia. Though Dahlia…did not fair well.
72. Roswell, New Mexico (2019 – Present)
There was a long time where I couldn’t figure out what the heck was going on re: the queerness of this aliens-among-us reboot of the 90s show, and frankly it’s still not entirely clear. Alien hottie Isobel was possessed by a creepy man when he was hitting on the now-dead Rosa. However, when Isobel was remembering this connection with Rosa, she says she thinks she was in love with her, and doesn’t seem fazed by this news, accepting her welcome from her bisexual brother. Plus I’m still convinced that Rosa’s best friend Maria was in love with her but that is neither here nor there.
71. The Walking Dead (2010 – Present)
This zombie apocalypse drama is another critical darling that is lower on our list than it would be a mainstream site’s because they have killed three of its five lesbians, including one named Tara, which frankly is just rude. Alisha and Denise also went the way of the Tara, and as of the ninth season, the gang met up with girlfriends Magna and Yumiko, a leader and an archer respectively, that can hopefully survive until the shows eventual end. (It has to end someday, right??)
70. Carnival Row (2019 – Present)
It’s always a delight when a queer person gets to play a queer character, and Cara Delevingne’s Vignette Stonemoss is no exception. A magical fantasy to be sure, Carnival Row follows some mystical creatures (like Vignette, who’s a fairy) in a gritty, dramatic tale of mystery. Vignette’s story is linked with fae Tourmaline Larou, who had a romance during events that preceded the show, but do share an on-screen kiss in the show’s first season; and maybe/hopefully more in the upcoming second.
69. Being Human (2011 – 2014)
This show is like Friends but with supernatural creatures. Okay, fine, it’s not quite as simple as that, but it does explore the hilarious (and occasionally dramatic) situations that arise when a vampire, a werewolf, and a ghost are all roommates. The show overall was very good, though the werewolf’s sister, Emily, is the only lesbian character, and she just bops in and out at random. She eventually goes into rehab for alcoholism, but overall her role is to be supportive of her werewolf brother like he was supportive of her lesbianism. It hits the metaphor a little on the head but I like it.
68. Gotham (2014 – 2019)
This show as undeniably a mess, top to bottom, but it did have queer characters front and center for most of its run, which cannot be discounted. Even though I will never forgive the show for letting lesbian detective Renee Montoya walk off into the parking lot of no return, Babs Kean did continue to be a bisexual babe (though occasionally crossing the line into the “crazy bisexual” trope we all know and hate). Unfortunately one of her girlfriends, Tabitha, fell victim to a trope too, and was stabbed to death by the Penguin.
67. The Flash (2014 – Present)
The only show in the Arrowverse to not provide us with a meaningful wlw relationship, The Flash really let me down by introducing the daughter of Barry and Iris, Nora aka the speedster XS, making a point to let it be known she was into women, then never mentioning it again. Granted, she didn’t have any relationships of any kind, but as someone who makes jokes about her own sexuality all the time, I’m sure it could have come up again at least one (1) more time over the course of her stint on the show. That said, Nora was undeniably not straight, and was a very delightful addition to the show. The only other on-screen ~situation~ between two women on the show was when Marlize DeVoe’s husband inhabited the body of a woman and she still loved him the same, but a) I’m not sure that counts b) it turns out she was being drugged into being compliant, so either way, no thank you.
66. The Boys (2019 – Present)
I like to describe this show as “what if superheroes were assholes.” It’s kind of The Magicians of the superhero world in that way; take a typically joyful and empowering genre and make it dark. The Boys imagines a world where the capitalism of Marvel Studios also involved the superpowered people themselves, and being a hero is a high-profile job, not an honor-bound duty. Queen Maeve is this show’s answer to Wonder Woman, casually stronger than all the boys but getting less respect. She’s jaded and broody and grumpy, and, much to my delight, gay. She has some issues with her ex-girlfriend though, and maybe a few more things to work out, but can she save her relationship and the world at the same time? :cue dramatic music:
65. Manifest (2018 – Present)
Imagine if, on Lost, instead of landing on a mysterious island with smoke monsters in polar bears, the people on the plane landed back in their real life, but five and half years after their plane took off, despite it feeling like one (1) plane ride. That’s Manifest. There are visions and mysteries and someone killing the passengers off and it’s all rather exciting. One of the flight attendants, Bethany, was illegally transporting her (male)cousin’s boyfriend from Jamaica, where it is illegal to be gay, and also just trying to get home to her wife.
64. Timeless (2016 – 2018)
Remember how Wishbone tried to teach you facts about history but also there was an ADORABLE DOG so you were actually paying attention? That’s sort of how I feel about Timeless. I learned so much (Hedy Lamarr was a legend, Google it) because instead of boring lectures, Abigail Spencer was dressing in period garb and teaching me through ACTION. The boss of this time travel operation was Agent Denise Christopher, who casually revealed at one point she had a wife and kids, and then sometimes those wife and kids would be on screen, and there was never a to-do about it. Except that one time Lucy and Jiya pretended to be lesbians named Cagney and Lacey to try to encourage young Christopher to come out to her mom and not go through with her arranged marriage. That was a to-do and a delight.
63. Dracula (2013 – 2014)
This is another way you know I am not just arbitrarily making this order up because Dracula would be MUCH higher if I were. Katie McGrath was the picture of perfection as Lucy Westenra, harboring a soul-crushing love for her best friend Mina, knowing her feelings would probably never be returned. She learned to identify these feelings by way of Lady Jayne, who showed her what kissing girls is like, Cruel-Intentions-style. Lady Jayne was mercy-killed at the end of the WAY-TOO-SHORT run, because she’d rather be dust than a vampire, and technically Dracula killed Lucy, but SHE was totally down to be a vampire, and I will never, ever, ever forgive the TV gods for denying me at least one season of Vengeful Lesbian Vampire
K’tay McGrawww Lucy Westenra for as long as I live.
62. Stargate Universe (2009 – 2011)
This space adventure, a spinoff of Stargate Atlantis, boasts the first lesbian character in the franchise, Camile Wray, highest ranking officer on the spaceship, played by none other than Ming-Na Wen. She occasionally gets to visit or communicate with her girlfriend Sharon Walker. They don’t quite get a happy ending, but frankly it’s not the worst on the list, and even though Sharon only ends up in a handful of episodes, Camile remains a regular character throughout.
61. Into the Badlands (2015 – 2019)
In this post-apocalyptic world, society is split into factions, and only the strongest survive. With magical abilities as an undercurrent, this show was a combination of stunning visuals and battle scenes that could be mistaken for a ballet. One of the main characters, Tilda, a baby assassin who is ready to grow into her own person, falls for a sex-worker-turned-assassin named Odessa. Just two little Butterflies in love. (The assassins were called Butterflies…hence the caption above.) Eventually the two part ways, Odessa moving on to date a fellow assassin named Mercy, and overall their storyline didn’t feel like it got the closure it deserved, but it was nice while it lasted. X
60. Agents of SHIELD (2014 – Present)
I’ll be perfectly honest with you, Agents of Shield had exactly one (1) point for being critically acclaimed, and the rest of its points that got it to the 60th position came from TV Team points. Because it’s a compelling, action-packed show, with some seasons better than others, but they don’t have much to report on re: queer women. Victoria Hand and Isabelle Hartley were queer in the comics, but that was never mentioned in the show, and even if you count them, they both died pretty quickly. And Sk-Daisy and Simmons should have kissed decades ago, it seems. In the meantime, Briana Venskus as Piper is holding it down for us; hopefully she gets an on-screen love interest some time soon.
59. Legion (2017 – 2019)
Legion took a character written for a man and cast Aubrey Plaza in it without changing a single thing, which gifted us which the magical chaos that is Lenny. Technically Lenny died a bunch of times but always came back in one way or another (not as a ghost though…this show is real weird, y’all) so who knows if she would have returned if the show continued on. She also had a relationship with a woman called Salmon, because, as I may have mentioned, this show is real weird. But Aubrey Plaza is truly a sight to behold and takes the weird to a whole new level in the most delicious ways.
58. Light as a Feather (2018 – Present)
A cheesy horror series — think “I Know What You Did Last Summer” meets “Final Destination” but with a PLL-esque cast — Light as a Feather focuses on a girl who lost her twin sister, a mysterious stranger, and a deadly sleepover game. One of the main girl’s best friends is a lesbian named Alex (of course), who may or may not have harbored feelings for the dead twin, but definitely got a girlfriend named Penny in Season 2. Unfortunately, the girlfriend ended up being evil and psychotic and crushed possibly to death (but possibly not??) but you can’t win ’em all.
57. Limetown (2019 – Present)
Based on the spooky narrative podcast of the same name, Limetown follows lesbian journalist Lia Haddock as she tries to solve the mystery of an entire town that disappeared, in one of those every-answer-begs-more-questions type of situation. Lia has a girlfriend, and she may or may not have slept with her boss, Gina, played by Sherri Saum. It’s a creepy, disturbing tale (and Jessica Biel is a bit creepy and disturbing herself) so it won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but it is undeniably gay gay gay.
56. Under the Dome (2013 – 2015)
Based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, this show explores the lives of people in a small town who find themselves trapped under a mysterious, invisible, inescapable dome. Amongst these people are wives Carolyn and Alice. Unfortunately neither of them make it out from under the dome alive, leaving their teen daughter Norrie a likely-very-traumatized orphan.
55. Witches of East End (2013 – 2014)
A tale about a family of witches cursed to live and die a thousand lives without remembering the last, this show starred Jenna Dewan and Riverdale’s Mädchen Amick and I’m afraid part of the reason it went highly under appreciated was that it was on Lifetime. The matriarch of this magical family, Joanna Beauchamp, is revealed to have been in a relationship with (yet another) Alex, played by the illustrious Michelle Hurd. We get a glimpse into the domesticated life in the past and one post-baddie goodbye kiss and it sure is magical. (Side note: Bianca Lawson is also on this show. I believe her character drew from Bianca’s real life when she revealed how she stays eternally young.)
54. Defiance (2012 – 2015)
Jaime Murray is another actress who shows up in multiple shows on this list, but this is only one of two where she plays canon queer. (Though let’s be honest, Jaime Murray has chemistry with practically everyone like some kind of Katie McGrath.) In Defiance, she plays a quiet, obedient alien wife who has her eyes opened up to the world beyond her husband and starts to rebel in her own ways. One of which is by sleeping with
Jenny Schecter the madame at the local brothel, Kenya Rosewater. This show also boasts queer alien Doc Yewll, and while Kenya goes the way of Jenny in this show, overall it’s still a fun supernatural romp.
53. The Shannara Chronicles (2015 – 2017)
Shannara is a rare mix of post-apocalyptic and high fantasy, not too dissimilar from Into the Badlands in that regard, but with more elves and magic. The opening scene in this show features an elven girl named Amberle running a blindfolded race intended only for men and winning it, so I was in from the start. Then they added bisexual rover Eretria, and though they killed her ex-girlfriend, she ended the series with a literal princess (played by Toni Topaz herself, Vanessa Morgan) by her side.
52. Now Apocalypse (2019)
Not unlike Legion in its what-the-fuckery, Now Apocalypse is confusing, interesting, and sometimes upsetting. This is also another show that has an everyone-is-queer vibe, with one of the main girls, Carly, saying that their generation (X, I presume) has a much less binary view on sexuality and assumes everyone’s at least a little bit gay. There is a somewhat eye-rolly lesbian teacher/predator situation, but also an interesting explore into an attempt at polyamory. Overall this weird trip has a very can’t-look-away vibe to it that is hard to peg as good or bad. (Which just goes to show how far having main/many queer characters and not killing any of them will get you on a list like this.)
51. Firefly (2002 – 2003)
A cult classic, this one-season Joss Whedon space cowboy show made waves long after it was over, leaving us to wonder if Inara, the spaceship’s resident sex worker and confidante, could have explored relationships with women further if the show had continued on. As it stands, she takes on female clients occasionally, seemingly by choice and not out of necessity. She also seems to have a bit of a history with Julie Cooper Nichol, but that might be me projecting.
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