My Third List of Queer Content on Netflix

Hey pals,

We are onto part three of the queer media I am finding on Netflix (obviously this is not just Queer media, this is just the media with Queer rep and letting you know if it’s a disappointment or not). Hope you enjoy this list during Pride Month of 2020.

Tales of the City – basically everyone is queer and live on an estate-like gay commune, racial diversity, one disabled (deaf) queer person, black, asian and latinx queers, bisexuals and the spectrum, lesbians, trans man, black drag queen, trans woman, couple who have threesomes, and the one dedicated straight duo whose child is one of the gays but (get this) the straight couple lived in the gay commune first! It’s pretty fun but also really on it with inner community violence and prejudice. Highly recommend. 

One Day At A Time – Elana is gay, has a genderqueer partner who uses they/them pronouns, a lesbian cousin married to her wife. Had this recommended to me a long while ago and binged the show. It also has so much other great rep (latinx families, addiction, mental health, disability benefits, being a single parent, etc.) very family friendly but also very on it politically. Great show (and glad to say it’s coming back!)

Friends With Benefits – gay best friend. That is all. 

Always Be My Maybe – queer best friend of female lead, poc in a wlw relationship having a baby, basically some side rep just coz they can which is still nice to see. Also the film generally is great with two asian leads in a RomCom. Very funny, very cute. 

Wine Country – White middle age lesbian, young Asian queer woman. This is a fun film with tonnes of leading women in their 40’s. Mostly white, which is no surprise but it’s pretty good. 

When they see us – last episode it is revealed one of the boys has a trans sibling (a Black trans woman), this is an incredible show. Very dark, based on real life events. Very important watch but also quite unsettling. 

Easy A – the guy she does detention with is a gay white dude. I think this film is pretty funny and well spoken about the issue of slut-shaming. 

Saved! – her boyfriend is gay and they have a love child at the end after he busts out of the conversion therapy center with his new boyfriend. Sorry spoilers but its a RomCom and I thought you should know it does end well for him. It honestly hilarious in a very late 90’s-early 2000’s way. 

Degrassi: next gen – new generation gay dude, bi dude, a brief weird poly thing, Asian gay guy gamer, nonbinary afab gamer. A nice little sprinkling of rep across gender and race. It’s cringe but I actually really enjoyed it and I’ve never seen the original Degrassi. 

Otherhood – one of the sons is gay and has a boyfriend and lives with other gay men and has a lesbian couple friend. I won’t lie, coming back to this list to add details and thoughts, I couldn’t remember this film. It wasn’t terrible but I wouldn’t go watch it again. 

Everything sucks! – main girl is a lesbian. Kiss at the end of the series. I hope there’s a follow up coz this was such a long build up and quite enjoyable. 

Unfinished Business – someone who works for the competitor is gay and they all go to a gay sex club in Germany. Typical dude film (kinda like the Hangover) so if that’s your thing you might enjoy this. It was alright to watch but wouldn’t watch again. 

Rough Night – wlw relationship at beginning (later one of them is divorcing a husband and the wlw couple aren’t together) two main characters woc. A couple looking for a third. This has Scarlett Johansson in it but if you can ignore her (she is the least likable character and also badly acted) then it’s not a terrible film, quite funny. Kinda like a lot of dude-bro films where they all got really fucked up and ended up in a really shite situation (the Hangover) and I like when it’s turned into a women lead film, they’re funnier to me the humour is similar but less gross.

Falling Inn Love – husbands who run a cafe in New Zealand (side characters) very minimal role but I thought they were cute so wanted to include them. This is a very tacky RomCom but I liked it enough to keep it on my list on Netflix. 

Hearts Beat Loud – main character (daughter) is queer and has love interest. Both woc. This is a very cute film with a daughter and her single father. She wants to go to school and studies hard but he wants her to give singing a shot (coz she has a wonderful singing voice) and I love this actress. 

Atypical – doesn’t get gay until near end of season 2 and gets gayer in season 3. Possibly two bi girls, or realising they are gay. Unsure, obviously going to be explored next season as this season was more about the two getting together (spoilers sorry). I really enjoy this show, though it is apparently linked to Autism Speaks which is a really shitty charity. Not sure on the link but I was sad to hear it as the queer rep is so good! Also the queer main character is played by a nonbinary actor!

Derry Girls – one of the main group comes out as a lesbian ep 4/5. This is a really funny comedy based in Ireland during a very real TIME they had in the 90’s. It was super interesting watching it, but also entirely daft a lot of the time. The actors are amazing. 

End of the fucking world – two queer lady police officers and one is black. This show was relatively funny but very intense. Quite a few content warnings for this show like attempted sexual assault and animal death. It was a new concept for a show I’ve not seen before, it was pretty enjoyable. 

The president – gay/bi cis Male lead ? Bi cis Male lead? His girlfriend?? Gender nc black person. Main characters mother. I can’t lie, I didn’t finish this coz the more I watched, the less it made sense. I thought this show was a pile of shit but you might like it. 

Cat fight – one of the main women is in a wlw relationship. Both white cis women in the queer relationship(i re-read how i write this and it sounded like i meant the two leads, and no Sandra Oh is definitely not white haha). This was honestly also a pile of shit. Sandra Oh is in it which drew me in, but it’s just women beating each other up until one of them goes into a coma and loses all their shit, repeat.

Let it snow – two girls. One is Asian. Both played by queer actors, one is actually nonbinary too! I enjoyed the book but was pleased they added a queer story to the film. I do recommend this, it’s very cute and silly. 

Merry happy whatever – lesbian adult daughter previously married to a bloke, is not out to family. This was quite a weird show but I was into it. It’s Christmas with one family and you see all the in-laws have a secret meet up to get through living with this crazy family. 

The Durrells – Mrs. Durrell almost marries a man who turns out to be gay, he later on has a male partner. I think they have to move away as the community finds out.

Being Human – there was one cis white male couple in one episode and one of them dies and the other has to flea. The rest of the show is constantly queerbaiting, but if you can get past that, it’s pretty funny and plot I’ve never seen before for werewolves, vampires, and ghosts. Also the werewolf actor is gay.

Skins – Generation 1 we have lovely Maxxie. Generation 2 Emily is a lesbian and Naomi is bisexual. Generation 3 none of the truly main cast are gay but Frankie has two dads and her and Mini seem to have a bit of a queer relationship in the second series. There is also Alex, not a main character really but there is some emphasis on him for plot.

Dynasty – One of the leads in the family is gay.

October Faction – the son of the main family is Black and gay, has a few love interests dotted around including other POC. I honestly don’t remember watching this… only some bits.

The Half Of It – A lovely film about friendship and becoming okay with who you are. Asian queer lead. Wholesome watching. Some weird issues with plot/story telling/writing in some areas where character actions don’t seem to make a lot of sense… but as a whole it’s a lovely film and has great rep. Also MC’s dad is so sweet.

Glee – I’m late to Glee and I’m glad i didn’t waste my life on it in my youth and used it as a time fill during Lockdown. We have out main guys Kurt and Blaine who are both gay men, both have interactions with other gay men. Then we have lesbian Santana (Latina) and bi Brittany. Santana also sleeps with Quinn at a later date in series 5 I think. Adam Lambert does a cameo as a queer band member in season 5. There’s a Black trans woman in season 5 but totally overshadowed and mostly vague, she never had any real love interests. Then there’s another surprise trans character season 6 which I’m not fond of, clear it was just a dramatic plot shoehorned in rather than something pre-planned. Season 6 has another gay character who is a jock and finds love with a hipster kid. Also introduced is a queer coded 13 yo character.

Elite – a fantastic drama based in a high school in Spain where all the rich kids go. One of the rich kids is gay, another is bi and a selection of polyamorous relationships shown. One of the non-rich is a gay Muslim boy. There’s also suggestion a female character has multi-gender attraction but hasn’t had the chance to be shown in the show, I have my fingers crossed for season 3!

3% – a dystopian show with similar vibes to the Hunger games, everyone has to compete at age 16/18 I don’t remember it’s been a while to get into the luxurious life of the 3% but it’s a lot creepier than that. One of the main characters has multi-gender attraction to some extent, ends up with a character of the same gender. Not a lot of rep otherwise but I liked this addition. There’s also a Black disabled main character for a couple seasons.

Hollywood – a different timeline of Hollywood if things had gone a little better with accepting LGBT+ people and BIPOC. We have Rock Hudson and his writer lover, the Gas station of male sex workers who also serviced many gay men. Lots of gay male rep in this and Queen Latifa plays a queer woman (Hattie McDaniel) dating one of Hollywood’s most well known queer women, Tallulah Bankhead, who just kinda dated everyone apparently (I’m hoping Jessica Kelgred-Fozard makes a video on her). There is a bisexual actress, Anna May Wong, in a minor role whose sexuality is never addressed.

Black Lightning – one of the main characters (one of the sisters) is queer, I’ve not watched very far yet. Based around a Black superhero father who has the power to control electricity and his daughters start exhibiting powers too.

Dear White People – both the show and film, Lionel is gay, in the show he spends more time in the closet and slowly coming out. Struggles with being Black in the gay community but also gay in the Black community. There are a few latinx queer characters too. The story of Black students at Winchester University (an ivy league) fighting racism and trying to gain equality on campus. One of the more minor characters is actually a Black femme lesbian as well.

Dead to Me – had a lot of sapphic undertones but turns out one of our main characters is queer and gets into a bit of a pickle. Dead to Me is about a woman’s husband suddenly dying and his murderer feeling so guilty she befriends the wife without her knowing she murdered her husband and things spiral and get a bit crazy but it’s a great show with two amazing leading actresses. One of her love interests is also actually played by a queer actress.

Cheer – this was a weird one, kinda thriller-y. About cheerleaders who hate their new coach and try to ruin her life. The main character is a Black queer woman, it’s relatively clear she is sapphic but is keeping it a secret. Unsure if she is attracted to multiple genders or performing straightness. Same for the best friend and the Coach, not sure if it’s multi gender attraction or performative straightness/queerness depending on the situation. content warning: abuse of power. There’s a football coach (i think) but definitely some adult man who sleeps with the high school girls and also the female coach of the cheerleaders engages in some inappropriate behaviour with her students.

I hope you enjoy your viewing, my previous posts are here and here 

Happy Pride!

~ Artie

Check out all my other content here

Check out my queer Youtube content here

Book Review: WRANGLESTONE by Darren Charlton

wranglestone zombie book YA

Hey pals,

I got the chance to read this amazing book before Christmas and I get to be part of the blog tour! It was described as a Zombie Apocalypse adventure book for

Wranglestone CoverYA with some elements of mystery and… A GAY PROTAGONIST!

I honestly had no idea I wanted or needed this book until I read the description. The writing is focused on the plot, not the character’s queerness, doing well to fill in the gaps in dystopian YA. The cover is so gorgeous as well and really fits the brief.

Here’s a short snippet from the novel:

A canoe hung on the dark water as silently as a wolf in the woods. Peter stumbled back. “Dad!”

“Aw hell,” came a voice. “I didn’t mean to startle ya.” A forest of tangled blond hair swished forward followed by a bloodied face.

Peter let out a deep sigh. “Cooper?”

Cooper tucked a strand of hair back behind his ears and shrugged. “I was just checking you was doin’ OK is all.” 

“Were,” said Peter.

Cooper cocked his head to one side like a confused dog. “Huh?”

“Were OK. Was is the wrong grammatical construction.”

Cooper looked away and seemed to rummage around in his head for the right thing to say. And it should’ve felt good watching him struggle for a change. After all, it wasn’t often that a chipmunk could outsmart a bobcat. Except it didn’t feel good at all. It would’ve been easier to live with the fact that the only other boy around Peter’s age happened to be the best Zee-wrangler the lake had ever seen if he was as mean as a westerly wind. But he wasn’t. From the little Peter knew from watching Cooper out on the lake all these years, patrolling it or ferrying people back home late at night when they’d had too much to drink over at one of the neighbour’s, he was more than useful. He was well liked.

It also didn’t help that he had the bluest eyes either. Even now, with his face half caked in dried blood and dirt, like he’d just crawled out of some stinking geyser, they still blazed like the blue of a flame. Peter pulled down on his sweater and looked away. All he had were his dumb words. Cooper had everything.

“I should’ve come and found you to say thank you,” said Peter at last. “Sorry.”

Cooper scratched under his armpit and shrugged. “I din’t come to chase you for no thank yous.”

“Well, I should’ve.”

There was another awkward silence so Peter filled it. “Did you bury the old man and that thing?”

“Yeah. Good and proper, out in the woods.”

Peter turned to leave. “Well, that must’ve been hard work, so thank you.”

“You going to First Fall soon?”

“I s’pose.”

Cooper leaned forward and for some reason looked hopeful. “Me too.”

“OK. Well, maybe see you there.”

Wanna lift?”

“What? No. I’m going with my dad.”

“Oh, I know. But if you wanted to hitch a ride or

somethin?”

“No, it’s OK.”

Cooper dipped his paddle in the water and brought the canoe a little closer to the shore. “It’s just that I sluiced out a bunch a deer guts from earlier and laid down a new hide on the seats and everything, so she’s good to go if you wanted. If you wanted to travel with me, I mean.”

Peter looked at Cooper’s shirt. It was so bloodied you couldn’t even make out the black and red plaid beneath it any more. Cooper must’ve noticed his hesitation and quickly glanced down to check himself.

“Oh,” he said, wiping his muddy palms across his thighs. “I honk. Do I honk? I’ve not washed the guts off yet, but I got a clean tee back home. Well, kinda clean.”

Peter narrowed his eyes. “I can make it across the lake without being killed most of the time, you know.”

“Course. I din’t mean that. I just wondered if you wanted to come with me is all. But it don’t matter.”

Doesn’t matter, thought Peter. “Besides, I don’t even know if I’m going to go yet.”

Cooper furrowed his brow. “How come?”

“Well, your dad’s gonna make sure Henry gets me out on the mainland for one thing.”

Cooper looked out toward those dark places where only the pine trees dared stand still.

“They’ll get off your back just as soon as you’ve killed one of the Dead,” he said. “I can show you how things work. If you wanted, I mean. Besides, it ain’t so bad out there.”

“I don’t see how it can be anything but.”

“Well, I ain’t saying it’s not crazier than a dog chasing its own tail, but you can’t see nothin’ all cooped up on these islands.”

“I can see plenty.”

“No,” said Cooper, “you can’t. The view from where you’re standing ain’t wilderness, it’s scenery.”

Peter followed Cooper’s line of sight, but he could only make out the black tips of the pines against the starry night. “Why, what can you see?”

Cooper struck the paddle down in the water like a post and rested his chin on the tip. “Oh, everythin’. The mountains, meadows, rivers roarin’. The way the stars aren’t like a flat ceiling overhead at all, but a universe that wraps all the way around us deep beneath the planet.”

Peter gazed up at the flat roof of stars you could see above the trees around the lake. He didn’t even know what Cooper was talking about.

“There’s something about open places that makes a man consider himself,” said Cooper, as if his soul somehow belonged out there.

Peter watched Cooper’s Adam’s apple rise and fall in his throat when he couldn’t even see his own in the mirror and marvelled at the ease he had in considering himself a man.

“Open places make you consider yourself?”

“Yeah,” said Cooper. “Like the plains.”

“And the stars?”

“Uh-huh. And the sea and the desert too, Pa says. But I dunno why that is.”

Peter shrugged. “Perhaps it’s because they make us feel small.”

“No. They make me feel bigger, Peter.”

Cooper sliced the paddle through the water and turned the canoe to leave.

“Well,” he sighed, “as long as you’s doing OK. I guess I’ll see you around.”

Peter felt a sudden tug in his stomach he didn’t recognize. He took a step forward and went to delay him. But he stopped himself and a moment later the canoe slipped inside the darkness and Cooper was gone. Peter ran his fingers across his throat to feel for his Adam’s apple and gazed up at the starry night. The tree house door creaked open behind him and light struck the shore.

“He carried you all the way up the steps to Darlene’s from the canoe,” called his dad. “Wouldn’t a hurt you to say yes.”

Peter felt the sharp tug in his tummy again. “Say yes to what?”

“Come on, Pete. Come inside, it’s getting cold.”

Peter held back, scanning the darkness for the canoe. But after a moment or two, the sound of the paddle cutting through the water had all but gone so he headed back toward the tree house. 

 

It’s amazing, I read the whole thing in one day which I haven’t done in ages! I couldn’t put it down. The queer rep is great, Peter and his dad have a moment near the beginning where it was made clear his dad knew and accepted him.

The world building and description was wonderful, it reminded me of the game Firewatch (I’ve never been anywhere near a real American nature reserve so that’s the best I got!) and the map at the beginning does help in placing where everything happens. The idea of living in a tree house over a lake sounds clever, I’ve never read or watched a zombie piece where they actually lived on a lake or in tree houses. It gave me some Walking Dead video game aesthetics as the lake froze over.

I think Darren Charlton approached the more sexual content well and perfectly hinted at it without writing an entire sex scene. I always applaud a writer who does this well as I don’t think it should be entirely omitted in YA but should be handled with care.

I love that there was a little bit of disability rep too! Often people with disabilities in a zombie book/film/show die because of it, so that gave a nice change too. I’d like to see more media that approached disabilities and chronic illness in dystopian futures. Disabled people are creative, ask anyone!

I cried several times, my heart was broken then sewed back together, and the number of TWISTS? Astonishing. Honestly hadn’t a clue who was behind it all until it was unveiled. Such a great mystery plot and not very traditional zombie world either.

As an adult reading this YA novel, I can say it suits the audience well but is written in such an enjoyable way that I got lost in it as well, so the age-range is much broader.

This is a great adventure book that ‘just so happens’ to centre a gay character. I could go on but I won’t coz it’ll just become spoilers and I’d rather let everyone have a chance to read themselves! It’s a great book for anyone who loves zombies.

Comes out 6th Feb

Check out the other stops on the blog tour!

Goodreads // Bookshop

~Artie

My other posts on this book: instagram / Goodreads / 2019 Reading Wrap Up

I also mention it in this post.

Also in LGBTQ+ book recs video here

Why I Take Magnesium Pills

Hey pals,

 

I wanted to talk through my experience of taking Magnesium supplements and why I now take them alongside multi-vitamins.

A few years ago (I say few because I have no concept of how long ago this actually was), my mother and I saw a Kinesiologist. It’s a very bizarre experience, a lot of moving my limbs and tapping. She told me I am very low in Magnesium after listing everything that was wrong and the symptoms linked. She prescribed me Magnesium, another pill and selenium drops. I didn’t really feel any benefits from this back in the day and once I ran out, I stopped.

One thing I remember her saying, “Magnesium is needed for pretty much every human function,” and that definitely stayed with me.

I have always have problems with sleep, constantly feeling fatigued, and have had bouts of really bad anxiety. Earlier this year alone I struggled to leave my uni house to do anything. That was before I started taking Magnesium again.

I’ve googled the benefits of Magnesium on-and-off since seeing the Kinesiologist and debated going back on them or even seeing her again.

I’d recently seen a YouTuber I really like (Melanie Murphy, before you ask) starting to take Magnesium along with a selection of other vitamins and minerals and she said it has really helped her anxiety and she felt so chill! So I thought, “Hey, maybe I should give it a go?”

I could always do with better sleep, more energy, less anxiety, less pain even. Magnesium helps relax muscles and has a lot of anti-inflammatory benefits. At this point, with my chronic pain, I will try anything once.

Melanie mentioned that women (lets ignore the self-misgender, because we are talking bio sex here) should be taking/consuming around 300mg of Magnesium a day. I’ve looked this up, females aged 19+ should take 310-320mg a day. So I looked at Amazon to begin, and decided I would rather buy from a company I can completely trust to give me what they are claiming to sell.

I now buy all my supplements from Holland & Barrett, because that’s their thing. I looked at the highest dose they sell, which was only 250mg, but I decided to give that a chance. Maybe I don’t need to be taking 300+mg a day, but I definitely think I need to be taking some.

 

It’s been a bit over a month now, it’s not a miracle pill but it definitely has made a lot of my above issues easier to combat. I may not dose off at 9pm every day, but getting to sleep before midnight is and waking up between 9 and 10am is becoming a habit. That’s pretty crazy, considering my previous sleeping pattern was 2am bed and 11am wake up. I have more energy and more cognitive ability. My pain is hit-and-miss but it always is. And when it comes to my anxiety, it’s pretty non-existent at this point; I’m capable of just taking things as they come.

If you’re thinking about trying Magnesium supplements, I say go for it. I did read that it can affect medications so double check with your doctor or pharmacist. But I’ve experienced a pretty positive change in my health and hope it continues to get better the longer I take them.

 

I’d love to know about your experiences!

 

~ Artie

 

What I take: https://www.hollandandbarrett.com/shop/product/holland-barrett-magnesium-tablets-250mg-60005830?skuid=005830

Financially Not Great

Hey pals,

 

I had a lot of my plans fall through recently, which was pretty distressing to begin but now I’ve just accepted that it has happened. It has given me some new life possibilities that I would have never even entertained. For example, going abroad. Whether that’s to work, an internship, or just some travelling time, doesn’t really matter. I had to do everything with someone.

I’ve always thought myself independent (except not entirely when within romantic relationships) but having to start over from my Mother’s spare bedroom has given me some thought and clarity. A new perspective, one I really didn’t think I’d ever have.

I love living in the UK. I haven’t explored enough of it for one, but I like how it works (ish), I like what I’ve got here (sort of), and I’m pretty bloody useless at learning and remembering languages (I’ve tried, and I would like to try again). I think mainly, I don’t have to pay for my health care or prescriptions, which is pretty sweet.

I’m often flooded with the realisation of how big the world is, and how I haven’t seen hardly any of it. I want to change that. I’ve been thinking of the different options that might exist. I see groups of school kids from other countries over here during summer, meeting new people but in a safe environment. Considering I’m an anxious mess when it comes to travelling (and many other things that aren’t relevant right now) I wanted to see if I could find a way to travel somewhere with or meeting a group out there with secure accomodation. I clearly can’t trust anyone to do anything with me, OR they don’t have the money, so I do want to do this by myself.

I actually had a brief moment where I thought, ‘wow, who’d have thought I’d be happy to be single?’ because, sure, I was comfortable being alone, but for this reason I was actually happy about it. I would never (and I mean never) gone abroad by myself whilst with someone, I wouldn’t have put that distance between us, that strain. And it’s very freeing to realise that.

I originally wanted to go away somewhere or like everyone does inter-railing, but with a group. Or then I thought, I’ll just go to one place and travel out on their transport to other areas nearby. Then I saw an ad on instagram.

How about

~ an internship ~

So nothing is decided right now, I’m still doing my research. Unfortunately, any of these options would cost a lot (particularly the internship, this actually blew my mind). So, I’ll apologise now, but I’m going to put below ways you can help me with funds, there’s a selection so please don’t click off just yet! And anyone who has done, or is planning to, do something similar, please let me know your experiences in the comments! I’d love to hear more!

~ Artie

 

 

Here is a selection of ways you can help me raise the funds for something like this:

  • I have a Patreon with behind the scenes type content, stuff that no one outside of Patreon would have access to seeing in a selection of levels.
  • I am a brand affiliate of Geopetric.com, they are a vegan, cruelty-free, and fair wage company in the U.S for pet products. With my affiliate code you can get 20% off, and not just once you can use it on every order you make on the website. So use our code: LAYLABARKSALOT20
  • You can make any size donation to my paypal.me link
  • I have a depop where I sell a selection of items (preferably only to U.K residents as postage is awful) find me with @amiexdelisle
  • I do tarot card readings online via email for £1 (or whatever is equal for your currency) just hit me up on any of my social media for more information.
  • and finally if there isn’t anything you can do money-wise, then sharing would do a big help. There’s one of these posts on basically every platform I use.