New Delhi: Representation is always important. And when it comes to web series, proper LGBTQIA+ representation requires strong characters that queer people can relate to. This is critical not just to help members come out openly, but also to facilitate a change in the mindset of straight people who don’t know much about the beautiful people of this community. It helps them understand that the love between people with a different sexual or gender identity is pretty much just like theirs.
We all grew up watching the queer community, often being mocked in movies and TV shows in the name of comedy. But today, things are gradually beginning to shift. These days, we encounter more shows with inspiring, and meaningful LGBTQIA+ characters, essaying strong, important roles - and that's not just the case with international content. Our very own mainstream Indian movies and shows are portraying the queer community through a sensitive lens, and helping with the normalisation of conversations related to the subject. It’s true that we still have a long way to go, but we must acknowledge the strives we've made so far.
So, here are five web series featuring strong LGBTQIA+ characters you should definitely watch.
1. Made In Heaven
Available on: Amazon Prime Video
Revolving around the personal hurdles of Tara Khanna played by Sobhita Dhulipala and Karan Mehra played by Arjun Mathur - a Delhi-based wedding planner duo, ‘Made In Heaven’ is by far one of the most queer-friendly and women empowering Indian TV shows to hit a streaming site. It touches on the topic of homosexuality with skilful subtlety and highlights the struggles and prejudices that the community faces on a regular basis. The intimate scenes between actor Arjun Mathur and Vikrant Massey are approached with great sensitivity and care.
2. Romil and Jugal
Available on - ALT Balaji
Giving a modern twist to Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, Romil and Jugal showcase the romance between two queer men. Starring Rajiv Siddhartha as Jugal and Manraj Singh as Romil, the show talks about two men in love who not only have to fight family opposition but also society's orthodox approach to their relationships and how their love conquers all in the end. Their on-screen chemistry is brilliant, and it’s a pleasure to watch them fall in love.
3. Married Woman
The series adapted from Manju Kapur's novel, 'A Married Woman' addresses various other social issues and taboos that people do not see fit for day-to-day conversations. It is present in subtle forms in almost all sections of society, making it an essential series to find solutions to all kinds of discrimination. The Married Woman revolves around a married woman Astha and her search for individuality. The 'Married Woman' is an urban relationship drama about women and their conditioning levied by society and her search to find herself. Starring in the series is Monica Dogra and Ridhi Dogra. Along with these two incredible women, there is Suhaas Ahuja, Imaad Shah, and various others.
4. His Storyy
ALT Balaji's latest urban relationship drama, His Storyy released in 2021, and it dealt with homosexuality and infidelity. What sets His Storyy different from others is that it deals with it subtly and does not get preachy anywhere. Satyadeep Misra, as the closeted Kunal and Mrinal Dutt as the free bird Preet, has done a commendable job. And when they come together on screen it gets difficult to comprehend that both these actors are heterosexual in real life. His Storyy is based on Kunal and Sakshi's successful marriage for 20 years with two beautiful children. Sakshi's world tears apart when she learns the truth about Kunal cheating on her with another man, Preet. This eventually leads to their marriage hitting the rocks. His Storyy is a journey of two people, Kunal and Sakshi, trying to rediscover their ties to each other in the face of a crushing revelation. Actors Satyadeep Misra, Priyamani Raj, Mrinal Dutt, Nitin Bhatia, Parinitaa Seth, Rajiv Kumar, Charu Shankar, and Mikhail Gandhi play the primary characters in the show.
5. Firsts Season 3
Firsts Season 3, pushes boundaries and explores a same gender romantic relationship between two young girls, who instantly click on a dating app and decide to get onboard an exhilarating journey of understanding love, life, and more together. Drawing real-life experiences and staying truly aligned to the story arc, the show is beautifully penned by Sulagna Chatterjee who, identifies as a queer and is directed by the very talented Bharat Misra. Firsts season 3, is a tale of acceptance, and coming together to celebrate the beauty of love, which has no labels.
It's time to pick your favourite LGBTQIA+ character from these amazing web series and let us know your favourite web series.