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The Best Current TV Shows with Gay Characters

Updated January 22, 2021 13.6k votes 4.5k voters 100.7k views42 items

List RulesVote up the best shows with LGBTQ+ characters that are currently airing new episodes on TV or a streaming service.

Gay characters on TV shows have come a long way since the days of All in the Family when a character named Steve shocked the nation by becoming the first openly gay character on a sitcom. Since then, gay TV shows like Will and Grace and Glee have blazed trails for LGBTQ+ characters. Now, scores of shows feature gay characters, sometimes in leading roles and other times as members of the supporting cast. Which gay TV series currently on air are the best?

Unlike in the past, series like Batwoman, Wynonna Earp, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and plenty of others now feature gay and lesbian characters without focusing overtly on their sexuality. In the past, most gay characters' predominant trait was the fact that they were gay. Now, we have LGBTQ+ TV shows with gay characters who are defined by their other traits as well, and they just happen to be gay.

Many people relate the growing presence and positive portrayal of the LGBTQ+ community in television to the gradually changing ideals of America. Many television writers have attempted to tackle the issue of gay rights and in doing so, they have helped to change the national narrative.

Thanks to that, we now have gay shows featuring gay characters who are everything from superheroes to prisoners to stay at home dads. Check out this list of gay and lesbian TV shows and vote up the series you think are the best current TV shows with gay characters.

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    Jules Vaughn
    Katerine "Kat" Hernandez

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  • Wynonna Earp2
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  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine3
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    Detective Jake Peralta, Detective Rosa Diaz

    ActorsAndy Samberg, Stephanie Beatriz, Terry Crews, Melissa Fumero, Joe Lo Truglio

    Premiered2013

    Genres (Tv)Comedy, Sitcom, Police procedural

    Captain Raymond Holt
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  • Grace and Frankie5
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    Grace and Frankie

    Grace, Brianna

    ActorsJane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Sam Waterston, Martin Sheen, Brooklyn Decker

    Premiered2015

    Genres (Tv)Comedy

    Sol Bergstein,Robert Hanson
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  • American Horror Story6
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    American Horror Story

    Constance Langdon, Tate Langdon

    ActorsConnie Britton, Dylan McDermott, Evan Peters, Taissa Farmiga, Denis O'Hare

    Premiered2011

    Genres (Tv)Anthology, Horror, Supernatural

    The Countess Elizabeth, Will Drake, Ramona Royale
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  • Legends of Tomorrow8
    Sara Lance/White Canary
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    The 100

    Bellamy Blake, Clarke Griffin

    ActorsEliza Taylor, Paige Turco, Thomas McDonell, Eli Goree, Marie Avgeropoulos

    Premiered2013

    Genres (Tv)Drama, Dystopian, Sci-fi, Action

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  • Supergirl11
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  • Grey's Anatomy12
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    Grey's Anatomy

    Meredith Grey, Derek Shepherd

    ActorsEllen Pompeo, Justin Chambers, Chandra Wilson

    Premiered2005

    Genres (Tv)Soap opera, Comedy, Medical drama

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  • Gentleman Jack13

    Anne Lister

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  • Batwoman14

    Kate Kane

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    EloideDavis
    Tabitha Foster

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    Doctor Who

    The Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith

    ActorsChristopher Eccleston, David Tennant, Matt Smith, Peter Capaldi, Jodie Whittaker

    Premiered1963

    Genres (Tv)Sci-fi, Adventure, Drama

    Madame Vastra, Jenny
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  • The Flash18
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    The Flash

    Flash, Iris West Allen

    ActorsGrant Gustin, Candice Patton, Danielle Panabaker, Rick Cosnett, Carlos Valdes

    Premiered2014

    Genres (Tv)Superhero, Action, Sci-fi, Drama

    Captain David Singh, Hartley Rathaway
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    Special

    Ryan Hayes

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    Law & Order: Special Victims Unit

    Olivia Benson, Elliot Stabler

    ActorsMariska Hargitay, Christopher Meloni, Ice-T

    Premiered1999

    Genres (Tv)Crime Fiction, Police procedural, Drama, Live action, Legal drama

    Dr. George Huang, Ken Randall
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    Gray

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    Black Lightning

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  • Noah's Arc25
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