The second season of She-Ra has just dropped! As with the past season, we got a great set of LGBTQ+ characters to give us some hope. Like The Dragon Prince, which I wrote about previously, She-Ra is shaping the type of fantasy that will be our future. Full of diversity.
We need more of it. The world isn’t straight, able bodied, male and white. But fantasy would sometimes try to tell us it is. Given fantasy has long been my favourite genre, this has always been a personal pet peeve. To see popular media starting to change that makes me delighted and hopeful.
My story isn’t unique: Growing up in a small town, with religious parents, and being deeply closeted. I never saw gay representation in media. It made me hurt as a kid, and deeply wish I was “normal” by my parents religion’s standards. I’m so glad the next generation of kids will get to see themselves reflected in television.
I have a friend who has to remind me from time to time that even when we have bad stuff happening, that our society is getting more positive than it has ever been before. She-Ra is one of the things that makes me hopeful about the progress we are making.
Spoilers for She-Ra season 2 ahoy
Season two gives us some more glimpses of the Lesbian princess Spinarella and Netossa, but to me the most important episode this season is Season 7. Here, we are introduced to Bo’s dads.
There is no great fanfare about the fact he has gay parents. They’re shown to be loving, and with a deeper personality that really shines, instead of being gay stereotypes. But what stands out is that they’re shown being affectionate to each other.
Even when we get told a character is gay, showing their relationship as healthy, loving and with displays of affection is just going overboard for most media. She-Ra treats Bow’s dads as they would a straight couple, and it just made my day.
There is a subplot about Bow not being honest to his fathers about wanting to fight in the rebellion. The scene, where he finally admits it, is very strongly coded as a coming out moment.
Though they evidently didn’t want to push it so far as having it be a coming out, the parallels are strong. The moment when Bow’s dads embrace him, and say they’ll accept him doing what he thinks is right for his happiness, is heartwarming.