LGBT Representation on Television is Up, Fox is Winning
While things remain bleak at the movie palace, over on the teevee things are looking up for the LGBT community. In its annual study of LGBT representation on television, GLAAD has concluded that the 2012-2013 season was a banner year for LGBT inclusion. In a way, television is more important, as the characters we see are often more familiar to us than the ones we watch in movies. We invite the characters of our favorite television shows into our homes once a week; their victories, and their failures, often resemble ours more closely than, say, the problems Superman encounters.
Of all broadcast networks, Fox wins this year with 42% of its primetime programming containing LGBT characters or themes. ABC follows with 33%, then NBC (29%), the CW (28%) and CBS falls in last place with a paltry 14%. On the cable side, ABC Family takes home the top spot with 50%. It’s followed by FX (40%), Showtime (31%), MTV (28%), TLC (27%), HBO (26%), USA (20%), TNT (17%), TBS (10%) and History (0%).
No network was given an “excellent” rating, the study’s highest distinction. ABC, ABC Family, the CW, Fox, NBC, MTV and Showtime were all marked “good” while TBS and History were branded “failing.”
However, it’s not all good news. Another study released today by GLAAD finds that only 3.3% of characters in scripted television shows in the current 2013-2104 season are LGBT, that’s down from last year’s record high of 4.4%. The only networks featuring more LGBT characters this year than last year are ABC and Fox.