9 standout bisexual+ moments from the 2018 GLAAD Media Awards

The 29th annual GLAAD Media Awards honored quality news and entertainment media representation of the bisexual+ (bi, pansexual, fluid, queer) community in both Los Angeles and New York.

GLAAD’s groundbreaking entertainment media research found last year that 13% of major studios’ LGBTQ-inclusive films counted bi+ characters and 28% of LGBTQ characters across TV platforms were bisexual+. As GLAAD’s 2017-2018 Where We Are in TV report notes:

Bisexual+ people actually make up the majority of the LGBTQ community*, and yet this community continues to be underrepresented in media or as characters who fall into harmful tropes. Both of these issues undermine how people understand bisexuality, and contribute to the hesitance which bisexual+ people may feel in coming out to family and friends.

While the media still has a long way to go before the bisexual+ community is fully and fairly represented, the landscape continues to see good progress. The GLAAD Media Awards celebrated some of the best bisexual+ content, characters, and creatives. Check out a few of our favorites:

Las Chicas del Cable, This is Us, Brooklyn Nine-Nine win across TV categories

Netflix’s Las Chicas del Cable features the out bi character, Carlota, and won for “Outstanding Scripted Television Series” in Spanish-language TV. William, the aging bisexual father and grandfather, moved audiences, broke ground representing an elderly Black bisexual man, and helped This Is Us win “Outstanding Drama Series.” The award was presented by Rachel Bloom, the star and show-runner of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, the musical comedy series acclaimed for its high quality representation of multiple bisexual characters who occassionally burst into song.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine took home the “Outstanding Comedy Series” award for its portrayal of Rosa, a newly out bisexual Latina woman, who’s played by out bisexual actress and advocate Stephanie Beatriz.

If you haven’t seen Stephanie’s acceptance speech about the need to tell accurate bisexual stories, do yourself a favor and hit play on the video above.

Keiynan Lonsdale makes history at the L.A. Rising Stars Luncheon

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Keiynan, who appeared alongside Stephanie in GLAAD’s video of bi+ celebs sending supportive messages to bi+ youth for #BiWeek 2017, presented the inaugural “Oustanding Kids & Family Programming” award with his Love, Simon co-star, Alexandra Shipp. He also appeared on stage the following night at the GLAAD Awards with Tommy Dorfman, and Jazz Jennings. Jazz, who is an out pansexual and transgender author, advocate, and TV personality, has previously won GLAAD Awards for her reality show, I Am Jazz. Speaking of Rising Stars…

GLAAD awards grants to 3 bi, pan, & queer young people already saving the world from itself

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The GLAAD Rising Stars Grant Program celebrates young people’s commitment to accelerating LGBTQ acceptance within their communities and culture at large. Grants are offered to support young people who are leveraging media to move hearts and minds and create change. Lea Juliett (they/them), Delta Air Lines Accelerating Acceptance Grant recipient, is the founder and Executive Director of the internally-acclaimed cyber civil rights group, #MarchAgainstRevengePorn. Turner Visionary Grant recipient Shayna Warner is expanding her print and video interview series, “The First Time I Saw Myself,” a collaboration with OutWrite Newsmagazine chronicling reactions to LGBTQ story lines. Pea (they/them) received the Telemundo Innovation Grant for embarking on their first virtual reality docudrama dedicated to increasing empathy and understanding for undocumented immigrants. These bisexual+ young adults are changing the world with diverse, innovative projects. They had the crowds on their feet with poignant and original acceptance speeches.

Nico Tortorella and Blair Imani rocked Rising Stars and the New York GLAAD Media Awards with stunning fashions & messages of inclusion

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Nico from TV Land’s Younger (and also that adorable video I mentioned earlier about bi+ celebs sending love to bi+ young people) hosted the Rising Stars Luncheon in NY and told the crowd of his marriage, “you could say we have been in a queer polyamorous relationship that we’ve been developing over the past 12 years,” noting that he and his spouse are both queer. “Our own identities are evolving,” he said, and added, “There’s more than one way, right?” Nico also presented an award at the GLAAD Awards the next night.

Blair Imani spoke at Rising Stars about her intersecting identities as a Black, queer, bisexual, Muslim woman of faith, asserting to the crowd, “I do exist.” The following night, she stood with Pulse shooting survivor Brandon Wolf on stage and called for an end to Tucker Carlson’s strategy of inciting targeted attacks on marginalized communities, Blair and Brandon have both experienced first hand the vitriol Tucker has caused.


Asia Kate Dillon, Nyle DiMarco, and Anthony Rapp highlight trans visibility

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In L.A., Star Trek: Discovery’s Anthony Rapp and Wilson Cruz introduced two transgender service members, Laila Ireland and El Cook, who discussed their documentary, TransMilitaryIreland and Cook shared their stories and highlighted the issues with a proposed ban on transgender troops in the military. Anthony, who has spoken about his queer identity and past relationships with people of different genders, helped bring wide-scale attention last year to the epidemic of sexual violence bisexual+ men face at higher rates than their gay and straight peers.

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Non-binary and pansexual Billions star Asia Kate Dillon and Nyle DiMarco, who is bisexual, presented additional winners at the New York ceremony. Asia said on stage, “Tonight, we’re here to celebrate art that creates empathy. Thanks to GLAAD – and to all of you – visibility for trans, non-binary and gender nonconforming people is increasing at a rapid rate. But there is still so much representation and visibility needed.”

Bi+ journalist Samantha Allen wins for amplifying often-erased bisexual+ men

Samantha Allen, who frequently covers bisexual+ community issues as a writer for several outlets like the Daily Beast, won GLAAD’s “Outstanding Digital Journalism Article” award in L.A. for her piece, “Why Bisexual Men Are Still Fighting to Convince Us They Exist” in Splinter. Read it here.

Halsey stays one of our favorite bisexual musicians and has the receipts to prove it

And the “Outstanding Music Artist” award goes to…Halsey for her “Hopeless Fountain Kingdom” album! The album includes the hit single, “Strangers,” featuring fellow bisexual artist Lauren Juaregui, Many listeners consider it a “love song to the LGBTQ community.” Along with the GLAAD award, “Strangers” received its own love letter from GLAAD when it came out last year.

In her acceptance speech for the award, Halsey said: “I’m a young, bisexual woman, and I’ve spent a large part of my life trying to validate myself — to my friends, to my family, to myself — trying to prove that who I love and how I feel is not a phase; it’s not part of some confusion that’s going to change or could be manipulated. So I tried really hard to find the courage this year to write female pronouns into my music." She also called attention to the staggeringly high rates of homelessness that LGBTQ young people face, largely because their families reject them for being who they are.

Lena Waithe calls for bisexual+ and transgender inclusion

When Lena Waithe accepted the "Outstanding Individual Episode (in a series without and LGBTQ regular)" GLAAD Award for the “Thanksgiving” episode of Master of None, she used her acceptance speech as an opportunity to call for a more inclusive, unified LGBTQ movement that accelerates acceptance for all. Lena especially noted the bisexual and trans community members, who are often erased from the national conversation. She said:

"I'm honored to be a part of this community and a lot of people of people ask me why I say 'I'm queer,' and I say that because I think it's a big umbrella. I don't want to separate myself from my trans family, my non-binary [family], the bisexual [community]. I feel like sometimes we can be a little segregated. You know how you have the wealthy gays over here, the gays on a budget over there. You got the asexual hero in their group and that crew. We need to be united because Laverne Cox's struggles may look different than mine but the pain we feel is the same. Someone who may be asexual may have a different journey than mine, but we have a similar life. There's things we have in common...We have to support each other, we have to talk to each other, we have to educate each other about our own individual journeys, because."

Honestly, I'm getting emotional all over again just thinking about it. I'm not crying at my desk, you're crying at your desk.

Bisexual+ advocates and influencers helped turn the red carpets pink, purple, and blue

Those are the colors of the bisexual flag…get it? Anyway, some of your favorite bisexuals+ were busy being everyone’s fashion goals ahead of the shows in each city. I snagged a few pics for you:

All photos credit: Getty Images

Be sure to check out the full list of bisexual+ nominees from this year's GLAAD Media Awards!