Watch how much gay TV representation has improved in just a few years. (Video.)

A Look at How Far Queers Have Come on TV (Video). 

A Look at How Far Queers Have Come on TV (Video). 

Outward
Expanding the LGBTQ Conversation
Sept. 18 2014 11:25 AM

Gays on TV: From National Freakout to Modern Family Fun

Baby on Board.
Mitch and Cam in Modern Family.

Photograph by Peter "Hopper" Stone/ABC.

Just a few years ago, whenever gay, lesbian, or bisexual characters appeared on broadcast television, a national freakout was never far behind. These days there are more queer TV characters than ever before, and television representations of gay life are increasingly rich and nuanced, even as the old lesbians-titilate, gays-entertain tropes sometimes remain in play.

This video considers all the out-queers on the small screen—as well as all the gay wannabes, pretend-to-bes, and should-bes—taking stock of how far we've come and looking forward to where we might go next. 

June Thomas is managing producer of Slate podcasts.

Grace Na is a freelance producer/editor for Slate. You can see more of her work here.