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    Where We Are on TV 2023-2024

    Representation in Kids & Family Programming

    Representation in Kids and Family Programming Andrew Rannells as Gary Prince and Donald Glover as Marshall Lee Adventure Time Fionna and Cake
    Andrew Rannells as Gary Prince and Donald Glover as Marshall Lee - Adventure Time Fionna and Cake

    As anti-LGBTQ legislation continues to be proposed and instituted at alarming rates — much of which is directly aimed at access for LGBTQ kids to schooling, facilities, and education systems — it is vital that content made for kids and families depict the LGBTQ community in a positive and accurate light. 

    Though there are several kids and family programs counted within our methodology, there are also many series that do not fall within our research parameters; either they don’t air in primetime, they have shorter episode lengths, or characters were not in enough episodes to count as recurring. Others detailed below were counted elsewhere in this report, but are still highlighted here due to their impact in the genre. 

    Disney Channel debuted the new animated sci-fi series Hailey’s On It!, introducing queer couples Becker and Kennedy and Jonathan and Thad. The second season of Marvel’s Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur continues to feature trans student Brooklyn and nonbinary student Tai, though they are now in guest starring roles. Disney Jr. is airing the second season of Firebuds, which includes nonbinary character Corey, Violet’s two mothers, Val and Viv Vega-Vaughn, and Axl’s two fathers, Arnie and AJ Ambrose. On Disney+, the final season of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series features an ever-growing ensemble cast, including fan-favorite couple Seb and Carlos, bisexual ex’s Big Red and Ashlyn, and lesbian new student Maddox. The season also re-introduces High School Musical character Ryan Evans, who is finally free to kiss his boyfriend at East High. 

    Netflix aired a bevy of LGBTQ kids and family programs this year. The streamer’s hit coming-of-age series Heartstopper returned for its sophomore season this summer, which introduces Elle’s new trans friends Naomi and Felix while exploring Isaac’s newfound asexual identity. The second season of animated series Princess Power also premiered on Netflix and features the lead’s gay fathers, King Barton and Sir Benedict, as well as the queer Queen Ryung. The fifth season of The Dragon Prince dropped in the summer, continuing to spotlight the charming transgender character Terrestrius and lesbian couple Queen Janai and General Amaya. Additionally, the final season of Netflix’s Power Rangers: Cosmic Fury further explores the relationship between history-making queer couple Izzy and Fern. 

    Premiering in March, Nickelodeon airs the sophomore season of Monster High, which delves deeper into the backgrounds of the iconic teenage monsters, including nonbinary student Frankie, and continues expanding on the theme of friendship. The network also renewed Transformers: Earthspark, which features the first character in a Transformers cartoon to identify as nonbinary. 

    Max debuted the Adventure Time spin-off series Adventure Time: Fionna and Cake this summer, which introduces the gender swapped versions of Princess Bubblegum and Marceline the Vampire Queen, gay couple Gary Prince and Marshall Lee. The final season of Summer Camp Island airs on Cartoon Network and includes queer couples Puddle and The King, Ava and Blanche, and Kent and Cole. Also on Cartoon Network is the final season of Craig of the Creek, which features numerous LGBTQ characters, including queer couples Kelsey and Stacks, Cat Burglar and George of The Tea Times, and Raj and Shawn.

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