In its annual “Where We Are on TV”
report released Thursday, GLAAD found LGBT representation has fallen
for the first time in five years.
GLAAD has been tracking LGBT
representation in television for 25 years. Thursday's “Where We Are
on TV” is the group's sixteenth report.
“This year’s Where We Are On TV
study found that of the 773 series regular characters scheduled to
appear on broadcast scripted primetime television this season, 70
(9.1 percent) are LGBTQ,” GLAAD said in reporting its findings.
“This is a decrease from the previous year’s record high
percentage of 10.2 percent, and the first season to mark a decrease
in this percentage since it last fell in the 2013-14 report.”
The group said that this decrease in
representation was expected due to the coronavirus pandemic's effect
GLAAD also found that nearly one in
every five LGBT characters appears on a series produced by Greg
Berlanti, Lena Waithe, Ryan Murphy, and Shonda Rhimes, a 3 percent
increase over last year (14% to 17%). Berlanti, Murphy, and Waithe
are openly LGBT.
LGBT series regulars on scripted
primetime cable series dropped from 121 to 81 characters. Recurring
LGBT characters also fell from 94 last year to 37. However, over half
of these characters are people of color for the first time since
GLAAD has put out its report.
Representation also fell on original
content produced by streaming services Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix.
Regular and recurring LGBT characters fell from 153 last year to 141
in the 2020-2021 television season. Twenty-eight percent of LGBT
characters on the streaming platforms are bisexual, a 2 percent
increase from last year. There are 29 regular and recurring
transgender characters and one lesbian asexual character, the report
The findings were presented during a
virtual event on Thursday. Included in the panel were GLAAD President
& CEO Sarah Kate Ellis, writer and actor Ryan O'Connell
(Netflix's Special), actor Harvey Guillen (FX's What We Do
In The Shadows), actor Dyllon Burnside (FX's Pose),
actress Alexandra Billings (ABC's The Conners). Report author
and researcher Megan Townsend presented the report's findings.
The full report can be found here.