LGBTQ+ Characters of Color In Media

Co-created with the amazing s4karuna! Check out her fancasts on tumblr!

[An image of Avatar Korra, Buck Vu, Captain Raymond Holt, Sophia Burset and Selina Kyle with the text

[An image of Avatar Korra, Buck Vu, Captain Raymond Holt, Sophia Burset and Selina Kyle with the text “LGBTQ characters of color”.]

Note I: If you send me a character for the list, please tell me their ethnicity in your comment/message and as much detail a you can!
Note II: Mixed-race, white passing actors are totally counted as long as they consider themselves non-white, even if the piece of media whitewashed their characters. Actors who don’t match the race/ethnicity of the character, specially in the case of white actors playing non-white roles, will also be clarified.
Note III: If you see any character is missing details or has any incorrect information, let me know!

Same-gender couples with people of color in 2016

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Chiron and Kevin
(Moonlight; USA; Dir. Barry Jenkins)

Lady Hideko and Sook-hee
(The Handmaiden; South Korea, Dir. Park Chan-Wook)

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Kelly and Yorkie
(Black Mirror, 2011-still running; episode s03e04: San Junipero)

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Amanita Caplan & Nomi Marks, and Hernando Fuentes & Lito Rodriguez
(Sense8, 2015-still running, the 2016 Christmas Special is on Netflix now)

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Annalise Keating and Eve Rothlo
(How To Get Away With Murder; 2014-still running)

Kevin Cozner and Raymond Holt
(Brooklyn Nine-Nine, 2013-still running)

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Kisa and Manola Jimenez
(From Dusk Till Dawn, 2014-?, no renewal for a fourth season confirmed)

Root and Sameen Shaw
(Person of Interest, 2011-2016, ended/cancelled)

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Kareema and Sofía
(No Tomorrow; 2016-?; first season will be up for streaming on Netflix in January 2017 and it might get a second season on Netflix depending on its views)

Corey and Mason Hewitt
(Teen Wolf, 2011-2017, last season airing now)

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Amy Raudenfeld & Sabrina; and Noah & Shane Harvey
(Faking It; 2014-2016, cancelled, you can read the creator’s Goodbye Letter here)

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Alexander Lightwood and Magnus Bane
(Shadowhunters, 2016-still running, second season premiered January 2nd 2017)

Anne Bonny and Max
(Black Sails, 2014-2017, last season airing January 29th 2017)

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Chantall and Nova Bordelon
(Queen Sugar, 2016-second season confirmed, first season will be up for streaming on the WatchOWN app in January 2017)

Dizzee Kipling and Thor 
(The Get Down, 2016-?, second half of the first season will be streaming on Netflix during 2017, renewal hasn’t been confirmed)

Celebrities who came out in 2016

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[images: square pictures of the celebrities listed below, arranged in rows of three square pictures each.] // #coming out cw, #outing cw, #transphobia cw

Rowan Blanchard, in January 2016, tweeted about being “open to liking any gender in the future, which is why I identify as queer”.

Amandla Stenberg came out as bisexual in January 2016 via the Teen Vogue Snapchat, though they later talked about preferring the label “pansexual” and not using it due to people’s ignorance. They also stated that they prefer gender-neutral pronouns, though they’d rather keep it low-profile so it won’t affect their career.

Mara Wilson came out as bisexual in June, while expressing her pain about the Orlando Shooting. She began by talking about her experience in gay bars and, when someone asked if she was gay, she replied with “Bi, but yeah.

Vincent Rodriguez III made his marriage public by posting a collage for his year and a half anniversary with his husband on Instagram.

Rebecca Sugar came out as bisexual during the San Diego Comic-Con.

Robin Lord Taylor made his marriage public by posting on Twitter a picture of his and his husband’s wedding rings for their 5th anniversary.

Sara Ramirez came out as bisexual with a speech during an event for LGBT Youth in October 2016.

Clea DuVall publicly declared her sexuality during a panel for LGBT writers, explaining that “I’ve played a lot of gay characters, but I haven’t really played a gay character that is gay in a way that is the gay that I feel like I am.

Lilly Wachowski publicly announced her transition in a statement after various publications threatened to out her without her consent. After addressing the transphobia in the media and the terrible consequences it has, she said, “So yeah, I’m transgender. And yeah, I’ve transitioned.

Lauren Jauregui was outed when someone leaked her pictures kissing a girl on Twitter, but days later she made her own, public coming out in an open letter to Trump supporters about being “a Bisexual Cuban-American Woman & So Proud of It”.

Gina Rodriguez was asked if she was gay on Twitter, to which she answered “I don’t need anyone to define their sexuality to me nor do I feel the need to either. I love hearts.

Stephanie Beatriz came out as bisexual on Twitter, quoting Aubrey Plaza’s “I fall in love with girls and guys. I can’t help it” in a tweet.

Jordan Raskopoulos came out as trans in February 2016, in a Facebook video where she said, “I am transgender. No shit. That’s right, I’m a girl. I am transgender.

Brianna Hildebrand announced that she has a girlfriend on Twitter. She was asked if she had a boyfriend, and she replied, “Kind of except she’s a girl”.

Gigi Gorgeous came out as trans back in 2013, and this year she announced on a YouTube video that she is a lesbian.

Feminist/Queer reads in Spanish

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[image: the cover of Devenir Perra, showing a woman in lingerie staring at herself in the mirror as a naked, feminine angel leans over her.]

  • Devenir Perra (To become a bitch), a queer/feminist book by Itziar Ziga, is amazing and you can read the author’s blogspot here.
  • ¿Así que sos lesbiana? (So, you’re a lesbian?) is not exactly a “queer blog” or a “feminist blog”, it’s one of those old-style auto-biographical blogspots that’s long been abandoned, but it’s written by one of the most talented women in my city and it’s beautiful.
  • Anfibia Magazine and Furias Magazine are online queer magazines!
  • La Revuelta is an online feminist/queer community.

[image: a photo of Maria Eva Rossi, smiling, with sunglasses on.]

Here is Despertando a Lilith (Waking Lilith) a documentary about the transition of Maria Eva Rossi, a teacher from my city who transitioned while on the job. 

[image: a black and white photo of two men in a stage-adaptation of Kiss of the Spider-Woman. one of them lies in the bed of the cell, while the other towels his hair.]

Some essential queer readings in Spanish-speaking lit include:

  • El Beso de la Mujer Araña (Kiss of the Spider-Woman), by gay author Manuel Puig. About a man arrested for being gay during the last Argentinian Dictatorship and his cell-mate, a revolutionary.
  • Antes que anochezca (Before the night falls) by Reinaldo Arenas is an autobiographical book about what it was to be gay and a disident in Castro’s Cuba.
  • Loco afán: crónicas de sidario (Crazy toil: HIV cronicles) by Pedro Lemebel is a series of four scenes of the trans scene in Chile pre-Dictatorship.
  • Aristóteles y Dante Descubren Los Secretos Del Universo, by Benjamin Alire Sáenz; which you might have heard of via tumblr because it can be also found in English.
  • Federico García Lorca’s sexuality isn’t a secret, and he’s got a bunch of poems about men and being gay.

[image: a picture of Susy Shock speaking on a microphone, what looks like a pandereta next to her, lights shining from behind her.]

And it’s not just dudes writing…
  • My favorite poet is Jewish-Argentinian bisexual artist Alejandra Pizarnik, and many of her poems can be found online.
  • Cristina Peri Rossi, Uruguayan lesbian poet.
  • Rosa María Roffiel, Mexcian lesbian poet and novelist.
  • Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, a 17th Century Mexican poet, isn’t Confirmed Gay™, but she’s got some very sapphic poems about her friend Countess María Luisa de Paredes.
  • Susy Shock, an Argentinian trans poet and singer. (Here is her blog!)

[image: promotional still from Para Vestir Santos, of the three sisters sitting together on a couch, all looking in the same direction with more or less distressed expressions.]

Also, if you want to watch some Gay Content™ in Spanish:

And I never miss a chance to insist that people listen to Kumbia Queers and Sara Hebe (x) (x), my favorite lesbians. You don’t truly know Spanish until you can listen to Sara’s rapping and understand it.

[image: black and white picture of a young Frida Kahlo and Chavela Vargas, laughing together while laying on the grass.]

Singer Chavela Vargas was Frida Kahlo’s lover, extremely talented and always unapologetic. Also, one of the singers from Eruca Sativa is bisexual!

Latinx LGBTQ Icons

  • Frida Kahlo, of course, who was openly bisexual.
  • Sara Hebe, a lesbian Argentinian rapper.
  • Flor de la V, a trans Argentinian celebrity (she’s messy but she’s been one of the most visible trans people in Lat Am since the 90′s when I was a kid, so I’ll always have a soft spot for her).
  • Kumbia Queers, a band of sapphic women that includes five Argentinian musicians and Mexican singer Ali Gua-Gua.
  • Alejandra Pizarnik, one of my favorite writers, was Jewish, bisexual and wrote a lot about her mental illness. I’ll be uploading translations of some of her poems in the next few days, because they’re hard to find.
  • Benjamin Alire Sáenz is a gay Mexican-American writer, and he’s the author of Aristóteles and Dante discover the secrets of the universe.
  • Amaranta Gomez Regalado, an Indigenous Mexican activist for the rights of people with HIV, is two-spirit and was the first transgender Mexican person to run for office.
  • Orlando Cruz lost this year, but the chance that he becomes the first openly gay boxing world champion in the future hasn’t gone yet.
  • Back to Argentina, Susy Shock is a trans musician and activist.
  • Vange Leonel Gandolfo was a Brazilian musician and activist, and an out lesbian.
  • Manuel Puig was a gay writer during the Argentinian military dictatorship, and his novel “The Spider Woman’s Kiss” is a retelling of his experiences in jail. It’s a beautiful book, though also very crude and painful. 
  • Argentinian writer Maria Elena Walsh was a lesbian, fact I sadly didn’t know about during my childhood.
  • Sylvia Rivera, one of the founders of the LGBT movement in the USA, was a Venezuelan-Puerto Rican trans woman who dedicated her life to the fight for trans and gay rights.
  • Of course, there’s Ricky Martin (who could forget Ricky?).
  • Michael Nava is a gay Mexican-American lawyer and author. (suggested by @sayitwithsarcophilus)
  • Gabby Rivera is a queer Puerto Rican comics writer who will soon be writing the America Chavez solo book.
  • Venezuelan supermodel Patricia Velásquez came out as gay recently.
  • Jesusa Rodríguez is a lesbian Mexican director, actress, playwright, performance artist, social activist. (suggested by @queersherlockian)
  • Mark Indelicato, who played Justin in Ugly Betty, isn’t straight. Raul Esparza (from Law and Order) is bisexual. And actresses Stephanie Beatriz, Sara Ramirez (who played Callie Torres in Grey’s) and Gina Rodriguez are all bisexual. Also, Lauren Jauregui, from Fifth Harmony, recently came out as bisexual too.