Our Top 10 Lesbian/Bisexual Characters on T.V.

Representation in media is a lot more important in our society than most people realize. The media influences our everyday lives. It creates role models and inspirations for all different types of people, or at least it should. Seeing someone on T.V. that looks like you, loves like you, and does what you wish you could do, has the ability to inspire people to follow their dreams and look beyond the limitations they are confronted with. The representation of LGBTQ+ characters has been very lacking over the years, to say the least. Many T.V. series create these characters as one dimensional in which their “queerness” is their only characteristic and make them completely expandable to the series so that they may be killed off as soon as they become an inconvenience. Here are 10 lesbian and bisexual characters that break the mold and give us realistic examples of what it’s like to be a woman who loves other women.

 

Emily, The Handmaid’s Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale is set in a dystopian future where infertility is a major problem among women. The few fertile ones get rounded up and forced to live as handmaids and bear children for powerful influential couples. Despite having sinned for being a lesbian and a professor, Emily is one of the few fertile women. Her wife and son were lucky enough to escape, however she wasn’t. She is rounded up and sent to the Red Center to be a handmaid. After Gilead, she was introduced as Ofglen who became a member of Mayday (a resistance group) and was later discovered having an affair with a Martha (a housekeeper). For their punishment as gender traitors, the Martha was sentenced to hang, and Emily was forced to undergo surgery, female genital mutilation, where they removed her clitoris. This took a heavy toll on Emily as she ran over a Guardian, which lead her to be shipped off to the colonies. She was then brought back to serve as a handmaid once again and was placed in a new household to resume her duties.

 

Rosa Diaz, Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Brooklyn Nine-Nine made history last year by making her the first character to come out as bisexual in primetime television. Before this, no one had actually said the words “I am bisexual” on T.V. Rosa Diaz is currently one of the most scary, secretive, and bad-ass characters on television. This remains relevant when discussing her sexuality, yet she relays on her friendship with Jake when she was coming out to her parents. At first, both of her parents reject her sexuality and try to move forward ignoring the fact that she loves women but she doesn’t allow that. Diaz confronts her parents and forces them to accept who she is. Her father accepts her with heartwarming speech and tells her to be patient with her mother which she understands. Diaz’ coming out story is incredibly important because a lot of people can relate to it.

 

Commander Lexa, The 100

Lexa kom trikru is the commander of the 12 clans of grounders when the 100 landed on Earth. She inspires respect from her people and is known for being neutral and logical when governing the clans. Her biggest problems began when her loyalty to her people conflicted with her feelings for Clarke. After the loss of her first love, Costia, Lexa resolved herself to put her people before her feelings, as those were only a weakness to her. Yet, it is precisely her feelings for Clarke that make the Commander realize there are some people who loving them makes you stronger. After betraying Clarke a few times for the sake of protecting her people, Lexa bows to her and promises she will never turn her back on Clarke again. The pair eventually gives in to their love and relish in it. It is Lexa’s loyalty and strength that set her apart from the rest and make her such a respected and beloved Commander among her people and to the series’ audience.

 

Petra Solano, Jane the Virgin

Petra Solano is known for her wits, determination, protectiveness, and resourcefulness. Throughout the show she has several male love interests, but that all changed in the fourth season of the show when we were introduced to Jane Ramos aka J.R, who becomes Petra’s lawyer after she’s accused of her sister’s murder. Fans didn’t get to see Petra with Jane Villanueva, as they had hoped for so long, but they did get another version of “Jetra” with this new couple. With the obvious chemistry between the two, and the countless sex dreams Petra has of J.R, it was really a no brainer to ship the pair. From being blackmailed to clearing up Petra’s name and getting disbarred, J.R. breaks up with Petra after finding out that Petra had lied about not killing her twin sister. However, fans are left with hope in the season finale as J.R. is seen rushing into Petra’s room after getting word that her life was in danger.

 

Patsy Mount, Call the Midwife

Patsy Mount is an elegant, professional, strong, energetic, and passionate midwife working in Nonnatus House. She is also closed off and likes to keep her work and personal life separated. Who can blame her though? Being a lesbian in the 1960’s was not easy, or safe. Throughout the show, we see how her sexuality is hinted at numerous times; from when her roommate and colleague, Nurse Franklin, commented on her lack of boyfriends to another midwife to when Patsy once told her “I don’t think girls are the equal of boys, I think they’re better”. It was later announced that Patsy had a girlfriend, Delia Busby, a nurse whom she had worked alongside with at The London (a hospital). Due to strong homophobic feelings surrounding that time, the couple is forced to maintain their relationship a secret. Said relationship is put to the test when Delia loses her memories after an accident. Although the two women find their way back to each other, they are still forced to live in secrecy.  

 

Annalise Keating, How To Get Away With Murder

Annalise Keating is the first criminal since Dexter that we want to watch succeed. She is strong, unwavering, unbelievably intelligent, shrewd, and truly a boss-ass b*tch. She commands respect in the courtroom as well as in her classroom. Even through her mental breakdowns, she exudes a strength and power rarely ever seen on T.V. which is evidence of Viola Davis’ amazing acting skills. In the series, she has multiple relationships including ones with Nate Lahey and Eve Rothlo. These relationships become intertwined when Keating turns Lahey into the police for the murder of her husband then asks Rothlo to get him off. Her relationships with both partners, although years apart, are very similar. Both partners are willing to put everything on the line for Keating while her focus is always on her career and success (and staying out of prison).

 

Cheryl Blossom, Riverdale

Cheryl Blossom, a popular mean girl who is self-absorbed, chaotic and has a flair for the dramatic… Or at least that’s what viewers saw when they were first introduced to this Bombshell at the beginning of the show. Despite her Ice Queen reputation, Cheryl is protective, passionate, charismatic, and has a knack for helping people every once in a while, even if it were for her own selfish reasons. This sassy Queen Bee projects a b*tchy side in order to hide who she really is and how she really feels, a daughter deprived of love. Her parents favored her dead brother and her mother had her undergo conversion therapy. She’s not really seen having an interest in boys, other than Archie Andrews because he reminded her of her brother. Cheryl becomes more and more independent as the show progresses and she’s given her first actual love interest, Toni Topaz. After the two have an unplanned movie date of sorts, the pair grows closer to one another and eventually share their first kiss when Toni and Cheryl’s friends help her escape a mental hospital.

 

Alex Danvers, Supergirl

Agent Danvers is proven to be both brawns AND brains in the D.E.O, with her extensive bio-engineering knowledge and her kickass fighting skills. Despite having an alien sister be one of the main reasons she was recruited, Alex proved to be one of the best agents the D.E.O had ever seen. Throughout the series Alex isn’t really seen pining over any guy, or anyone for that matter, but that all changes when she meets Maggie Sawyer, an NYPD detective she met working a crime scene. The two continue to cross paths working on cases and eventually become friends with their regular bar visits. After the pair realize their feelings for each other and Alex becomes in tune with her sexuality, their relationship turns more serious and eventually they get engaged. In the end, the couple breaks off their engagement due to Alex wanting kids and Maggie wanting nothing to do with them, much to their fans disappointment.

 

Santana Lopez, Glee

It is well known that Santana Lopez is your typical high school bad girl. Behind her b*itchy exterior, she’s actually pretty cruel too. One of her best know qualities is her brutal honesty. Although her attitude throughout her arc in the series stays pretty much the same, the way she relates to rest of the characters changes drastically throughout the series. She goes from being just plain mean to doing her best to help her friends. One of the reasons for the change in her character is the acceptance of her sexuality and her friends being there for her throughout that experience. The most important part of Santana’s experience is the role she plays in the lives of young impressionable girls who have trouble dealing with their sexuality. She not only deals with accepting herself and allowing herself to love another woman, but she also comes out to her abuela and deals with the rejection that came with doing so. At the end of the day, Santana thrives beyond what she imagined for herself and that is exactly the kind of influence every young girl needs.

 

Casey Garner, Atypical

Although Casey’s sexual identity has not been confirmed in the sitcom, we can say for sure she’s bi-curious. Casey has a boyfriend, Evan, yet, as season two progresses, she begins to have feelings for her new friend Izzie who becomes her “favorite person” after knowing each other only a short while. The two almost share a kiss before they are interrupted by Casey’s mom, Elsa. Elsa’s reaction to the whole thing is incredibly cool and understanding towards her daughter. She even shares with Casey her experience with a woman and treats the entire situation with complete normalcy. Nevertheless, Casey doesn’t really acknowledge anything is going on between them and goes deeper into her relationship with Evan. Nothing really happens between Izzie and Casey, except some intense hand-holding at the end of season two which leads us to believe that she’s experiencing something new.

 

These are the queens we love and relate to the most! If you have any suggestions for more lesbian and bisexual characters, feel free to comment and let us know which ones are your faves!