by Ian Carlos Crawford
2019 has felt approximately 5,000 years long. Remember 2016? That was only 3 years ago! But it’s that time of year again here at Matthew Shepard Foundation — to remember the best queer things in pop culture that came out this year!
This year felt aggressively heterosexual, so let’s light our Lady Gaga candles and hope that 2020 is exxxtremely queer.
15) Into the Dark: Midnight Kiss
A straight forward slasher flick — but with gay men instead of straight men. A Hulu special, as a part of their Into the Dark horror series, that could’ve easily been high camp but it never goes there yet doesn’t take itself too seriously, which makes it kind of stand out. A fun watch with some genuinely gory kills.
A very gay, Oscar-bait-y musical about the real-life very gay musician Elton John. It also gave us this picture of Taron Egerton dressed as Elton in hot pants lookin’ RIGHT.
13) Marvel’s Runaways final season
The show went out with a really great final season. They didn’t shy away from showing whacky Marvel powers, Elizabeth Hurley vamping around as Morgan le Fay or developing the Niko/Carolina romance. The first episode even had our beloved superhero lesbian couple getting married (albeit it was all mostly kinda sorta dream).
12) The Magicians Eliot/Quentin
While The Magicians might be one of the queerest shows on TV right now, this season they really outdid themselves. We learn that finally-confirmed-bisexual Quentin (Jason Ralph) had confessed to feelings for out gay character Eliot (Hale Appleman), only to be rejected by Eliot out of fear. We also learned it was Eliot’s biggest regret. We cried. Then we watched the finale and cried a whole lot more.
11) RPDR’s Yvie Oddly & Brooke Lynn Hytes Lip Sync
If you didn’t completely scream your head off during or after this entire performance, I’m going to kindly ask you to go to the eye doctor immediately. This was the best of the best. Dare I say even better than Alyssa vs Tatianna’s Shut Up and Drive performance? Maybe. Shut up and watch it already:
10) The Other Two
A comedy that borders on becoming as cartoony as 30 Rock, that can also be really tender at certain moments. The show works because of the great writing and the great cast. Drew Tarver’s Cary Dubeck and Heléne Yorke’s Brook Dubeck are incredibly relatable to anyone who has ever tried to make it in a big city. They’re also relatable because they have famous friends that barely gets them into kids movie premieres even though their brother is starring in said kids movie. The show is also fucking hilarious, the gay brother/straight sister dynamic here is absolutely believable and wonderful. One of the best shows of the year, if we’re being honest!
9) Robin on Stranger Things
The show finally added a gay character! And in a really tender moment, we get one of the best coming out scenes on TV in forever. Robin (Maya Hawke) comes out to her coworker and new close friends Steve (Joe Keery) — while they’re laying on the floor, bloody and beaten up — and then have a nice laugh about everything. It’s truly great.
The best friend chemistry between Beanie Feldstein’s Molly and Kaitlyn Dever‘s Amy is absolutely bananas. They really feel like a straight/gay best friend duo. Also, the movie is hilarious.
Our first gay-lead superhero TV show! And how hot is Ruby Rose? Jeez.
6) Pose Season 2
As Matt Zoller Seitz said in Vulture, “Pose is a joyous series about giving love and staying fabulous no matter what life throws at you.” This season they addressed the epidemic of trans women of color being killed — by killing a main character and breaking our god damned hearts.
5) Are You The One
The first entirely sexually fluid dating show — it was the drama-filled mess we queers deserve! The contestants made for some great TV and also left us rooting for them all to win!
4) The L-Word: Generation Q
Bring back every gay show, tbh! In a world of revivals, this one is very much deserved. Three of the original characters are back — Shane, Bette, and Alice. The slew of new nonbinary, POC, disabled, and trans folx make the next generation of this show a hit — and way less problematic than the first time around, too! Win, win.
3) Lil Nas X
You couldn’t avoid Lil Nas X’s cover of “Old Town Road” this year if you tried! His single shot to the top of the charts, making him the first LGBTQ+ person of color to hit #1. He also officially came out this year! We stan excellence and handsomeness.
2) Schitt’s Creek season 5
This show has always been unapologetically queer and also incredibly wonderful. This season they really leaned into their emotional beats and nearly every episode had a tearful moment. But the biggest moment was when Noah Reid’s Patrick proposed to beloved main character, Dan Levy’s David. And, aren’t we are all just Davids looking for our Patricks?
1)Megan Rapinoe, Sportsperson of the Year
Being named Sports Illustrated’s Sportsperson of the year the same year you win the World Cup is kind of a big deal. Especially for an out gay woman. That’s not even to mention she took a very public stand against Trump — refusing to visit the White House and becoming the talking point for every Fox News brain rot zombie.
What other queer moments have you celebrated in 2019? What are you hoping to see next year? BRING ON 2020, AMIRITE?
About the Author:
Ian Carlos Crawford grew up in southern New Jersey and, like most people from NJ, he graduated from Rutgers University. He then graduated from New School with an MFA in nonfiction writing. His writing has appeared on sites like Geeks Out, BuzzFeed, NewNowNext, and other random corners of the internet. He currently co-hosts a podcast about his favorite thing, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, called Slayerfest 98 and is shopping around his fiction manuscript. Follow him on Twitter @ianxcarlos