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Summer Preview: 10 LGBT Interest TV Series You Can’t Miss

Summer Preview: 10 LGBT Interest TV Series You Can't Miss

Coming in addition to our summer movie preview a few days back, here’s our list of 10 new and returning TV series you can’t miss this summer.  The lists have one glorious thing in common: Ms. Lily Tomlin, who is basically tied with Amy Schumer in our eyes for the designation of Queen of Summer ’15. Tomlin is of course starring opposite Jane Fonda in Netflix’s “Grace and Frankie,” which PREMIERES TODAY! And it’s of course listed below, in addition to 9 other series:

“Bessie”
What’s The Deal: Okay, so this is cheating a bit. “Bessie” is not a series, but a TV movie. One that features Queen Latifah gunning for an Emmy as legendary bisexual blues singer Bessie Smith. Directed by Dee Rees, “Bessie” also stars Mo’Nique as Ma Rainey, who allegedly was the first woman to get in bed with Bessie. Smith’s sexuality was a big part of her life (and inspired the explicitly lesbian song “It’s Dirty But Good”) and Rees certainly didn’t hold back on queer content in her fantastic film debut “Pariah.” So consider us very curious.

Where Can You Watch: HBO

When’s It Coming: May 16th

“Faking It”

What’s The Deal: We have to admit, we weren’t exactly excited for this show when we heard its premise: Two straight girls fake being lesbians to become more popular at high school? In the hands of MTV, god only knew where something like that could go. But the show — premiering the second half of its second season  this summer– is impressively way more complicated than that, and has gotten better with every episode. Set at a progressive high school in Austin, Texas, “Faking It” is probably as insightful as it gets when it comes to LGBTI youth (that “I” is indeed there because the series offers an extremely rare representation of an intersex character) on television.  

Where Can You Watch: MTV

When’s It Coming: The second half of the second season debuts August 31st… Which is still technically summer.

“The Fosters”

What’s The Deal: ABC’s latest modern family was built on a foundation of diversity and progression, so much that it’s been called a franker, broader rival to its funny older brother on the network: the oh-so-aptly-titled “Modern Family.” A creation of gay duo Bradley Bredeweg and Peter Paige, and backed by J. Lo as a tribute to her aunt who never started a family of her own due to societal homophobia, “The Fosters” follows an interracial lesbian couple raising a family of adopted and foster children, as they deal with the struggles of, you know, being a contemporary US famjam. It may be a tired formula that lends itself too easily to soap and sentiment, but the breadth of its characters’ stories keeps “The Fosters” fresh enough to refrain from tuning out.

Where Can You Watch: ABC Family

When’s It Coming: The third season starts airing on June 8th.
“Grace & Frankie”
What’s The Deal: Sorry third season of “Orange is the New Black” (though don’t worry it’s on here too) but the Netflix event of 2015 as far as we’re concerned is the premiere of “Grace and Frankie,” the Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin sitcom that has the following glorious premise: The series follows long-time rivals Grace and Frankie, who are brought together after their husbands announce they are in love with each other and plan to get married. Fonda and Tomlin play the titular rivals, while none other than Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston play their gay husbands. 

Where Can You Watch: Netflix
When’s It Coming: May 8th (that’s today!)
“Halt and Catch Fire”
What’s The Deal: The underrated period drama from Christopher Cantwell and Christopher C. Rogers returns later this month. Set in the “Silicon Prairie of Texas” in the mid 1980s, it offers an inside look at the personal computer revolution… but it’s about far more than its one line synopsis suggests. Its lead character Joe (played brilliantly by Lee Pace) is not only one of the leaders of said revolution but one of the most layered LGBT characters on TV now or maybe ever. If you haven’t watched the first season, go back now and get ready for round two.

Where Can You Watch: AMC

When’s It Coming: The second season starts May 31st

“Hunting Season”
What’s The Deal: “Hunting Season” tells the story of Alex (Ben Baur), who has been keeping a secret sex blog since breaking up with his boyfriend two years ago, and enjoying all the benefits of being young and single in New York – where take out, dry cleaning and sex can be at your door in 15 minutes.  When Alex runs into someone from his past he re-considers the consequences of his freedom and decides to make some changes, with unexpected results.  His two best friends are going through their own turmoil as well, as Tommy (Marc Sinoway) confronts someone who despises him and everything he stands for, and TJ (Jake Manabat) and his husband explore non-monogamy in their marriage. 

Where Can You Watch: Vimeo

When’s It Coming: It debuted this week.
“Masters of Sex”

What’s The Deal: Like its fellow period drama “Halt and Catch Fire,” “Masters of Sex” handles human sexuality in a manner unlike most shows on television. Its third season sets itself in the early 1960s, with William Masters (Michael Sheen) and Virginia Johnson (Lizzy Caplan) continuing their human sexuality research. If season two — which was better than season one, in our opinion — is any indication, we can expect more nuanced, thoughtful storytelling that shines a light on how far we have and haven’t come in terms of understanding our own sexuality.

Where Can You Watch: Showtime

When’s It Coming: July 12th

“Orange is the New Black”

What’s The Deal: As you surely know by now, the hugely popular “Orange is the New Black” offers up the inner-dramas (and comedies!) of a women’s prison. Can creator Jenji Kohan keep the bar set high for season 3? We don’t know much about what goes down, but with episode titles like “I’m a Bitch Because I’m Sad,” “The Great Hate Fuck,” and “Use Your Tears as Lube,” you know we’ll be spending 14 straight hours finding out come June 12th.

Where Can You Watch: Netflix

When’s It Coming: June 12th

“Sense8”

What’s The Deal: Netflix sure is upping the ante this summer (it has four series on this list), giving Andy and Lana Wachowski the chance to show us what they can do with a series via “Sense8” (a play on the word sensate, which means “aware”). The sci-fi series (co-created with “Babylon 5” creator J. Michael Straczynski) revolves around eight strangers from around the world (including a trans woman blogger from San Francisco and a closeted Mexican actor) who suddenly become mentally and emotionally linked, and if this trailer is any indication — it looks super queer. 

Where Can You Watch: Netflix

When’s It Coming: June 8th
“Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp”
What’s The Deal: Reboots have gotten pretty annoying in their excess, but we are not complaining about this one. David Wain and Michael Showalter are offering up a 8 episode prequel to their cult classic 2001 movie “Wet Hot American Summer,” and the gang is all here: Janeane Garofalo, Bradley Cooper (hopefully offering up more of the man-on-man action he had in the movie), Amy Poehler, Molly Shannon, Paul Rudd, Christopher Meloni, Ken Marino, Elizabeth Banks and Michael Ian Black all return, while Jon Hamm, Josh Charles, Chris Pine and Kristen Wiig are among the newcomers. 

Where Can You Watch: Netflix

When’s It Coming: July 31st

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