1: Adventure Time (2010)
Princess Bubblegum and Marceline have always had something going on between them in the show — with fans speculating that they were gay for years. There was some intentional subtext left in the show that the two were dating, but unfortunately due to the prejudice at the time Cartoon Network wouldn't make it official/allow it past censorship. It wasn’t until the series finale in 2018 that the duo got an on-screen kiss together, cementing their relationship status as a canon couple. The two even got their own extended special dedicated to them recently in Adventure Time: Obsidian which aired in 2020.
2: The Legend of Korra (2012)
Although Korra and Asami weren’t able to get much attention drawn to their relationship because of Nickelodeon barring the team from doing so at the time — they were confirmed a couple in the finale. They even ended up having much more development given to their love life down the line in the official The Legend of Korra comic series.
3: Steven Universe (2013)
Steven Universe is hella queer, and undoubtedly laid the foundation for much of this decade’s later gay shows just from how casually open it was about gay characters and relationships. From a lesbian wedding between Ruby and Sapphire, the crystal gems being nonbinary, and having numerous gay leads such as Pearl, Garnet, and more, Steven Universe was truly revolutionary on the LGBTQ+ cartoon front.
4: The Loud House (2016)
The Loud House ain’t bad went it comes to gay representation from Nickelodeon. One of the characters Clyde, has two dads — Howard and Harold McBride. In addition, one of the main kids of the Loud family, Luna Loud, is openly bi and has a girlfriend Sam.
5: The Hollow (2018)
A rather underrated Netflix cartoon, The Hollow is a show about kids who show up mysteriously in a strange world — many crazy plot twists and weird turns ensue; think of it like Lost for kids. In season 2, it was revealed that the main character Adam is gay!
6: OK-K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes (2013)
Another show that is slightly under the radar but had some great representation is the show OK-K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes, an action-filled cartoon about superheroes with a bright, funky retro aesthetic. The main female sidekick Enid is bi and has a girlfriend Red Action, and the main villain Boxman is pan-sexual, and married to his partner, Professor Venomous, a bisexual man. Almost all of the characters in the show, protagonist and antagonist alike are coded quite queer and do not abide by typical gender norms.
7: The Dragon Prince (2018)
From the makers of Avatar the Last Airbender, The Dragon Prince is another big turning point for animation — not only in regards to gay representation, but also for disabled and POC rep — hosting many black main characters, a blind pirate, and badass deaf general and aunt, Amaya. Some major highlights for the Dragon Prince in terms of LGBT characters include a nonbinary elf named Kazi, Rayla’s dads Runaan and Ethari, and lesbian queens Annika and Neha of Duren. There are even subtle hints towards a possible romantic relationship developing between aunt Amaya and the Sunfire elf general, Janai.
8: Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts (2020)
Kipo and the Age of Wonderbeasts is a really fun show, topped off by impressive black representation, an excellent soundtrack, popping visuals and a refreshingly unique art style to boot. A bunch of teenagers stuck in a crazy post apocalyptic wasteland full of bizarre mutant animals — and it’s gay? Sign me up. There honestly really is a noticeable lack of black gay characters in animation, so it was awesome to see a character like Benson take center stage as one of the main protagonists in the show.
9: The Owl House (2020)
The Owl House is essentially about a girl, Luz, who gets whisked away to a supernatural world full of demons and witches; it certainly gives off some heavy Gravity Fall vibes as well, likely owed to the fact that it’s show runner Dana Terrace was also a former storyboard artist on Gravity Falls. Luz’s main love interest is Amity Blight, a rival that she meets at Hexside School of Magic and Demonics, and slowly warms up to over the course of the series. In addition, some of the background characters seen at Grom are noticeably gay as well.
10: She-Ra and the Princesses of Power (2018)
A full fledged reboot of the hit 80s cartoon of the same name, She-Ra is a show you cannot miss for gay rep. It has lesbians. It has gays. It has nonbinary rep. Some of its characters are implied to be trans. Pretty much all of the main characters are gay, queer, and everything in between — and its wonderful.
In summary, Bubbline walked so Catradora could run!
Rocko’s Modern Life: Static Cling (2019)
A Netflix reboot/special of the cult classic 90s Nick show, Rocko’s Modern Life, Rocko’s Modern Life: Static Cling is centered around the gang being transported to the future, in the late 2010s. They adjust to the wild and weird new customs and technology that they missed out on after being stuck in space for 20 years. Along the way, they help Rachel Bighead, who came out as trans to adjust to her new life and help her reconcile with her dad Mr. Bighead.
Clarence tells the story of a 4th grader Clarence, who along with his best friends Sumo and Jeff, explore the day to day life of middle school all while having crazy adventures. It’s a pretty down to earth cartoon that should ring familiar to a lot of people’s fond childhood memories. In the show, Jeff has two moms, EJ and Sue!
Arther made major headlines a year ago when one of it’s long running characters, Mr. Ratburn, came out as gay in the episode, “Mr. Ratburn and the Special Someone”, where he marries his partner Patrick. It was a very wholesome episode to watch, and great to finally see some positivity in kids shows towards same-sex marriage.
In the current iteration of Blue’s Clues, Blue’s Clues & You, there was an Alphabet Song video which not only displayed plenty of diverse people to celebrate Black History Month, but also displayed a series of LGBTQ+ flags under P for Pride. This recently took the media by storm, with many giving the show praise for it’s positive representation of LGBT rights, and rightfully so!