New TV shows to watch during Pride Month
Pride Month each June is the perfect time to be reminded of the LGBTQ+'s vibrant presence in every nook and cranny of society, real and fictional, past and present. So we’ve pulled together a list of eight new TV series — and returning ones with new seasons — to catch up with this month's most colorful shows.
After all, the old saying never really gets old: We're here, we're queer, get used to it.
Let's dive into the best queer TV has to offer this month, so you can celebrate Pride Month right from your couch.
- Umbrella Academy
A crime-of-the-century adventure from the perspective of time-traveling superheroes, Umbrella Academy, at its best, is an indescribable alchemy of family, history and damaged adult children: In other words, a perfect metaphor for growing up queer in America.
Better yet, the long-awaited third season features Elliot Page's character coming out as transgender.
How to watch: Season 3 premieres June 22 on Netflix. Seasons 1-2 are on Netflix now.
- First Kill
If you’re dying for a dose of delicious supernatural queer teen angst, look no further than First Kill. Based on a short story by V.E. Schwab, the series puts a young lesbian twist on the classic forbidden romance between a vampire and a slayer.
Teenage vampire Juliette Fairmont, played by Sarah Catherine Hook, has hit vamp adolescence and is finally expected to kill and feed on actual humans. Although she has been pushing back against this rite of passage for as long as possible, Jules can't help but be drawn to her crush, Calliope Burns, played by Imani Lewis. Cal, a recent transfer student, has a secret of her own: She's the youngest daughter of a family of monster hunters.
The series should appeal to anyone who thought Buffy the Vampire Slayer or Twilight would have been better if it were gay.
How to watch: Premieres June 10 on Netflix.
LGBTQ+ TV: Dead Ends and Gentlemen
- Dead End: Paranormal Park
Fans of queer cartoons should make sure to clear their schedules for the arrival of Dead End: Paranormal Park. The animated horror-comedy, based on creator Hamish Steele's graphic novel series DeadEndia, follows trans teen Barney, voiced by Zach Barack, who gets a job at the local haunted theme park where an encounter with a demon gives his dog Pugsley, played by Alex Brightman, the ability to talk.
The coming-of-age story will see Barney, along with his pal Norma, played by Kody Kavitha, encounter zombies, ghosts, and other supernatural beings while also navigating family, identity and even crushes.
How to watch: Premieres June 16 on Netflix,
- Gentleman Jack
Based on the experiences of a landowning Yorkshire woman of the 19th century, Gentleman Jack stars Suranne Jones as Anne Lister, often called "the first modern lesbian" for the intimate relationships with women she recorded in her queer-coded diaries.
Along with my beloved Dickinson on Apple TV+, the series — which just concluded its second season — offers a richly detailed portrait of the ways that queer people managed to live, and love, long before there were modern terms for our sexuality or gender identity. Plus, Anne's sheer, decisive capable-ness as a business-minded lesbian in a patriarchal society might be the "Move. I’m gay" meme of Georgian England.
How to watch: Seasons 1-2 are streaming on HBO Max.
LGBTQ+ TV: Queer shows unite
- Queer as Folk
The men, the sex, and the city are hotter than Hades in Peacock’s multicultural, New Orleans-set remake of the pioneering soap, this time without the same over-reliance on white, cis men to propel the narrative.
Still, carving out new terrain by moving Babylon to Frenchmen Street, and queer Southerners — especially queer people of color — to the foreground, this Queer as Folk conjures its share of carnal pleasures. As Brodie's, played by Devin Way, move home upends the lives of his ex, played by Johnny Sibilly, and a talented young drag artist – Fin Argus – you can have your bourbon ginger and drink it too.
How to watch: Premieres June 9 on Peacock.
- Book of Queer
The most appropriate way to kick off Pride Month is with a celebration of LGBTQ+ history, honoring the heroes who likely never imagined there would be a month-long explosion of rainbow merchandise and corporate statements.
With the help of queer historians and experts, The Book of Queer aims to shed light on historical figures whose contributions have been overlooked, or their queer identities erased, by mainstream society. Narrated by queer icons and featuring an entirely LGBTQ+ ensemble cast, the five-episode series will include stories about Abraham Lincoln, Eleanor Roosevelt, Bayard Rustin, Josephine Baker, Harvey Milk, Sylvia Rivera, Marsha P. Johnson, and more.
As conservative lawmakers across the US attempt to ban educators from even acknowledging the existence of queer and trans people in classrooms, this series, infusing facts with comedy and musical fun, is a vital reminder that LGBTQ+ people have existed throughout history.
How to watch: Check out Discovery+.
With so many options, there are plenty of ways to turn on some new show and get to celebrating Pride Month!
Cover photo: Collage: Unsplash/robmaxwell & dariox