If you’ve watched any of my YouTube videos, then it’ll be no surprise that I’m utterly obsessed with fictional lesbians. Emily and Alison. Stef and Lena. Karolina and Nico. Tamsin and Bo. I’m the captain of so many queer ships that I’m thinking of investing in a fleet. And yes, I’ll admit it, I’m THAT girl. I will literally watch anything (even this trash) if someone tells me a bisexual, queer or lesbian woman makes an appearance. For instance, I’m terrified of psychological thrillers but that didn’t stop my 20-year-old self from buying a ticket to see Black Swan. Sure, I didn’t sleep for weeks but hey that 45 second lesbian scene was worth the trauma!
(On a practical note, if the government ever needs lesbians for anything, just promise us queer content. We’ll all follow, no questions asked.)
However, with all the chants of “new year, new me” still faintly circulating the internet, I’ve decided to look toward the future! So, here are four lesbian characters who are either debuting or becoming more prominent in 2018.
1) Alice/Tilly, Once Upon a Time [March 2]
Once Upon a time is no stranger to gay storylines. They teased a relationship between Mulan and Aurora in 2013 and even showed an iconic lesbian kiss between Dorothy and Little Red Riding Hood in 2016. However, each of these storylines were short lived and left fans feeling disappointed and underrepresented. Despite the show-runners’ attempts to normalize a homosexual love story by making it just “a part of every day life” they completely missed the mark. Each plot is rushed and the episodes end up feeling like an ill conceived publicity stunt. (I won’t even get into SwanQueen and the massive missed opportunities there.)
Luckily, with the introduction of openly lesbian character, Alice, Once finally seems to be getting it right. In the 4th episode of season 7 titled “Beauty”, Alice is revealed to be a lesbian who has had at least one relationship with another woman in the past.
However, this casual admission is more than just throwing us gays another rainbow colored bone. According to Once producer and co-creator Eddy Kitsis, “an epic love story” awaits Alice in the back half of season 7. After watching the winter finale, it’s pretty obvious that this profound romance involves Robin, the daughter of Robin Hood and the Wicked Witch of the West, Zelena.
Without giving away the plot, something happens in the final episode before hiatus (7×10) that forces Robin and Alice to lose their memories and live apart from each other . However, it’s obvious this separation won’t last for much longer. Kitsis assures viewers that we’ll “see Alice and Robin in love, and for the second half of the season, we’re going to see how they met and how they got to that place. Of course… they don’t know each other. They don’t remember each other, and they don’t even realize they’re in love. So we’re going to see how they met in the fairytale side, and we’re going to root for them to find each other.”
I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited to watch a plot unfold. This season of Once has been absolutely amazing in my opinion and I’m so excited that the writers are doing away with poorly constructed mini arcs about gay characters. Alice and Robin’s story is developing with patience, consideration and tact. It seems Once is finally giving us a true, enduring fairytale about lesbian love. How awesome is that?
(Also, just looking at how cute they are is enough to make anyone swoon. You’re welcome.)
2) Anissa Pierce, Black Lightning [Tuesdays]
This next character is literally making television history this year! Anissa Pierce, daughter of Jefferson Pierce (aka Black Lightning), is the first ever black, lesbian superhero to appear on live action TV.
“I think it’s so important for brown, lesbian girls to see themselves because we’re not seeing that on TV,” says Nafessa Williams, the actor who plays Anissa. On top of being an out and proud lesbian, Anissa is a big sister, medical student, teacher and all around bad ass.
The show does an excellent job of normalizing her sexuality. In fact, we discover she’s a lesbian simply by seeing her in bed with another woman. The show doesn’t portray a long and difficult coming out storyline. Anissa’s relationship with her girlfriend is treated like any other relationship (because *gasp* maybe it is just like any other relationship!) Not something special.
“Anissa has no apologies for who she is. She owns it,” says Williams. “She’s not hiding in the closet, she’s come out when she’s a teenager, they’ve accepted it, and we’ve been living boldly in that.”
As someone who struggles to publicly embrace my sexuality, I really admire Anissa and her family’s ability to be open. Her father unabashedly talks about his daughter’s relationship with other women. Jefferson has no issue telling people that Anissa is at her girlfriend’s house. It’s just accepted and the entire family supports her fully.
Since, LGBTQA+ people who are rejected by their parents are eight times more likely to attempt suicide their peers who have been accepted, this type of bold acceptance is incredibly important.
Keep on breaking barriers and encouraging radical acceptance, Black Lightning!
3) Ximena Sinfuego, The Fosters [Tuesdays]
If you’re a member of the LGBTQA+ community and have never seen the Fosters, then you’re missing out on some wonderful representation. The premise of the show centers around Stef and Lena Adams-Foster, an interracial lesbian couple, who are raising five children (Brandon, Jesus, Marianna, Callie and Jude) four of whom are adopted. Their youngest son, Jude, is openly gay and Callie’s sexuality is questionable. Needless to say, the Fosters is used to highlighting queer voices.
However, Ximena Sinfuego’s storyline is particularly important because of it’s political implications. Ximena is an undocumented immigrant and her uncertain Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status has left her seeking sanctuary in a church. This leads to a pretty humorous scene where Ximena comes out to her best friend, Callie, on an altar. (I mean, name a better place than a church to come out….)
Call it lesbian intuition, but immediately after this scene aired I knew the writers were going to have Ximena fall for Callie. Prior to this blooming relationship, Callie had been dating Aaron, a transgender character on the snow. (Fun fact: according to TV guide their relationship was “the first time a lead heroine of a teen drama has entered into a romantic relationship with a transgender character.”) However, Callie recently called it quits with Aaron because she needed time to figure herself out. But apparently, and luckily for us, rules don’t apply to Ximena!
The pair have been growing increasingly close all season due to Callie advocating for Ximena’s DACA hearing. So, it’s no surprise the two girls were involved in a lip-lock during last week’s episode, #IWasMadeInAmerica. Emotions were running high after a protest Callie staged on immigration got picked up in a national paper and Ximena, overcome with joy, kissed the girl!
Unfortunately, Callie’s reaction to this kiss is very difficult to read. She raises a hand to her lips and looks away…either happily or concernedly. As someone who has been in love with Callie since season 1, I’m very excited about the prospect of her having a female love interest. That being said, I’m not sure if she’ll enter into a relationship with Ximena because of her need for personal space and the fact that she’s exclusively dated men up to this point.
Regardless, Ximena Sinfuego is the newest lesbian to grace the Fosters! And you can’t deny that Callie and Ximena have some incredible chemistry. I mean, just take a long at these gifs.
What do you think is going to end up happening between these two?
4) Ava Sharpe, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow (Feb 12)
Sara Lance has had her fair share of lesbian love interests ranging from a highly trained assassin and a 1950’s nurse to the queen of France and the legendary Guinevere on Legends of Tomorrow. However, I think she’s finally met her match with the strong, intelligent and bossy, Ava Sharpe. Ava is a high-ranking agent of the Time Bureau, an adversary to Sara’s team of Legends. Needless to say, their relationship started off with a lot of conflict, guns and steamy looks.
However, as the season progressed Ava slowly began to respect Sara’s motley crew of superheroes. She even assisted their efforts to correct “aberrations”, or mass alterations to history due to time travel, multiple times. Ava seems to complement Sara’s stubborn strength perfectly and would be an ideal longterm girlfriend. (She’d also be Sara’s first real relationship since being resurrected through the Lazarus Pit)
While Ava’s sexuality has not been explicitly confirmed, the sexual tension between the two women is palpable. (I think this is the definition of “bedroom eyes”.) Not to mention, Marc Guggenheim, the executive producer for Legends, revealed that Sara would be getting a steady love interest, (who is a new character) during this season.
“It’s definitely time for Sara to settle down, or at least have a relationship that’s more than a roll in the hay, “says Guggenheim.It’s hard when you’re traveling through time,” This all points to the extreme likelihood that Sara Lance will be establishing a relatively long term relationship with Ava Sharpe! (And I can’t wait!)
Here’s some gifs of Sara kissing girls to tide you over until February 12!