The 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards are coming up on April 8, and several of the nominees include media projects showcasing fair, accurate, and inclusive representations of the bisexual+ community. Although bisexual+ people are still widely underrepresented in media (despite making up the majority of the LGBTQ community), several nominees at the 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards continue to move the needle for bisexual+ represenation.
Nominated for Outstanding Film – Wide Release, Netflix’s Ma Rainey Black Bottom highlights the legendary “Mother of the Blues.” Academy Award-winning actress Viola Davis plays Ma Rainey, the unapologetically free spiritied bisexual jazz singer. Taking place in the 1920s, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom celebrates the blues and musical creatives who go against societal norms. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Viola Davis shared her perspective on portraying the iconic LGBTQ pioneer: “There’s a sense of confidence with her because she owned her sexuality—she was a bisexual woman—and she was a leader. She had her own band that she paid, and she was an entrepreneur in 1927, Jim Crow America.”
The Craft: Legacy, a remake of the legendary 1996 cult classic The Craft, introduces covens and witchcraft to a new generation. The film, which has been praised for its inclusion of trans lead character Lourdes (played by Zoey Luna), also explores the story of self-discovery and acceptance for Timmy, a bisexual young man played by Nicholas Galitzine. Nominated for Outstanding Film – Wide Release, The Craft: Legacy explores the importance of increasing representation for bisexual men. In a press interview, director Zoe Lister-Jones told reporters: “I think I really wanted to also look at the ways in which young men are also being harmed by the systems that are oppressing women…Even if you benefit from that system of oppression, you’re also being harmed by it. I think that’s just such an important recognition for all of us to have. So I wanted to really look at that and look at aspirational masculinity which includes sexual fluidity and bisexuality and queerness and a celebration of all of those things.”
Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini star in Netflix’s Dead to Me, a series about the friendship between two women who, after traumatic events, meet at a grief support group. Nominated for Outstanding Comedy Series, Dead to Me features a multi-dimensional bisexual storyline, presented in a refreshingly casual way. For Judy, played by Linda Cardellini, there is no official coming out moment and she does not define her sexuality before she begins dating her girlfriend Michelle, played by Natalie Morales, in the newest season.
Another show nominated this year for Outstanding Comedy Series is HBO Max’s Harley Quinn. This past season, Quinn, voiced by Kaley Cuoco, embraced her romantic interest in Poison Ivy, voiced by Lake Bell, while attempting to take over Gotham City from the most popular DC Universe supervillains. Harley Quinn is fearless love story that portrays the importance of queer women supporting one another in male-dominated societies and the process of healing trauma from past relationships. On the show, Ivy does have a romantic tie to Kite Man but ultimately chooses Harley Quinn. They unapologetically embrace their love and create room for a more inclusive conversation about bisexuality.
In 2019, Lilly Singh made history when she became the first openly bisexual woman to host an American major broadcast network late night talk show with A Little Late with Lilly Singh. Nominated for Outstanding Variety or Talk Show Episode for her segment “Lilly Responds to Comments About Her Sexuality,” Singh’s candidness and passion for visibility and representation continues to break barriers for bisexual women of color. As the first woman of Indian descent to combat bisexual stereotypes on late night television, Singh promotes open conversation for cultural acceptance within the LGBTQ community. In the segment, Singh shares: “Coming out was truly one of the scariest things I’ve ever done, and I choose to come out online which is a great way to let people know something, especially if you instantly want to know exactly how they feel about you. As scared as I was, I quickly realized for every negative comment I recieved, I’d get 100 that were super supportive and I was now part of this loving community that was ready to step up and support me.”
This year, bisexual artists Lady Gaga and Halsey and pansexual artists Kehlani and Miley Cyrus are nominated for Outstanding Music Artist. In the newly added Outstanding Breakthrough Music Artist category, bisexual artists CHIKA, Phoebe Bridgers, Rina Sawayama, and Victoria Monét, as well as queer artist FLETCHER, received nominations.
The 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards feature several other series, films, and projects that highlight bisexual representation, including Sex Education, Big Mouth, Everything’s Gonna Be Okay, Killing Eve, The Wilds, Wynonna Earp, Ana, #Luimelia, Élite, The Loud House, The Owl House, and many more. For a full list of nominees for the 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards, click here. A tip sheet with a breakdown of nominations by media and trends among the nominees is also available here.
The 32nd Annual GLAAD Media Awards will exclusively premiere on GLAAD’s YouTube at 8pm ET. The event will stream on Hulu starting at 10pm ET on April 8, and will be available to stream on-demand on Hulu until the end of June. For more details, click here.