Gays on TV: Your guide to the week's best LGBT TV and film

Here's what not to miss on the box this week.


Words: Hugh Kaye

OK, I’m old. I remember when there were only two TV channels so maybe that’s why this column always starts with programmes on your regular telly box set.

But don’t say you can’t teach this old dog (oi, less of the “old”, please) new tricks: some of the best shows can be found elsewhere this week.

The OA returns to Netflix for a second series (although the makers seem to prefer the word “part”). Anyway, while OA wakes up in strange surroundings, a private eye is trying to find a missing girl in San Francisco.

For more about the show, pick up a copy our 25th anniversary issue, where we speak to the show's transgender star Ian Alexander about what's in store for his character Buck this season.

The streaming service also has Forbidden Games: The Justin Fashanu Story. This documentary looks at the life and struggles of the only openly gay footballer to play at the highest level in this country.

He pulled on the shirt of Norwich, Nottingham Forest and Southampton among others and will be remembered by football fans for one of the greatest goals ever seen on Match of the Day. But things went very wrong for him after he came out in a front-page splash in The Sun in 1990.

Staying with Netflix, if you haven’t seen the Batman sequel Gotham, there’s a chance to watch series one.

The dark – and pretty violent – drama features LGBTQ actors in major roles, including Robin Lord Taylor as Oswald Cobblepot/Penguin, Cory Michael Smith as Edward Nygma/The Riddler and BD Wong as Hugo Strange, who enters the story a bit further down the line.

One more programme worth taking note of before we move on to “standard” television is Mimi on a Mission: Sex Ed, which can be found on iPlayer from Friday 5 April.

YouTube star Mimi Missfit takes seven teenagers (under the age of 16) to the Netherlands to see how the Dutch handle sex education (far better than certain people in Birmingham, needless to say). Episode three focuses on LGBTQ issues and includes a party for National Coming Out Day.

Celebs on the Ranch (5Star, Mon-Fri 1-5 Apr, 9pm) is likely to be somewhat more trashy. Louie Spence is among the famous names tasting the life of a cowboy in Arizona, with daily elimination challenges. Ye-hawrr!

Another LGBTQ stalwart pops up in a new series, Joe Lycett’s Got Your Back (C4, Fri 5 Apr, 8.30pm), a sort of Watchdog show where wronged viewers are helped in their battle against corporate giants – sometimes getting back thousands of pounds.

Elsewhere, Duncan James pops up on Pointless Celebrities (BBC1, Sat 30 Mar, 6.05pm). But if you are looking for something a bit deeper, check out Toffs, Queers and Traitors: The Extraordinary Life of Guy Burgess (BBC4, Weds 3 Apr, 10pm).

This Storyville documentary looks at what became known as the Cambridge spy ring, which caused a scandal in the early 1950s – a story which reverberated on for almost 30 years.

Finally, much has been written and many programmes made about serial killer John Wayne Gacy who murdered at least 33 teenagers and young men, all of whom he branded male prostitutes.

But Deadly Legacy (ID, Weds 3 Apr, 11pm) takes a slightly different tack: due to a lack of DNA technology at the time of the killings, some of the bodies found under the Gacy’s house remain unidentified and this documentary tries to link a missing person’s case to the Gacy.

Did the 'Killer Clown' murder 16-year-old runaway Jimmy Haakenson? ID can be found on Sky channel 154, Virgin 170.