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Big Gay Summer Preview: 10 LGBT Films and Television Shows You Should Be Excited For

By /bent | /Bent May 9, 2014 at 9:13AM

Summer is almost here, and though you might not be expecting much in the way of great LGBT content coming your way given the season's big straight blockbuster tendencies (not that some of those worthwhile… every gay man we know is more than excited to go see the Zac Efron shirtless opus that is "Neighbours" this weekend), we are here to queerly assure you that is not actually the case. On screens big and small, there's actually a really strong mix of LGBT film and television about to come your way, and here's a big gay summer preview to prove it.
1

Orange Is The New Black

When/where can you watch it? Netflix will post the show's second season in its entirety on June 6th (in all territories!)

Why should you be excited for it? Do we really need to even go there? An instant cultural phenomenon when it debuted last year, the second season of Jenji Kohan's dark women-in-prison comedy is at the top of summer anticipation lists for millions of people gay or straight.  We'll find out what happened to Piper after she seems to beat the shit out of Doggett at the end of the season finale, and whether Alex is sticking around much, not to mention the season two happenings of Crazy Eyes, Alex, Sophia, Red, Nicky, Taystee… We are more than ready to feast our eyes on some next level crazy.

Watch the second season trailer:

Please Like Me

When/where can you watch it? Starting on August 1st on Pivot.

Why should you be excited for it?  If you have not heard of "Please Like Me" you should immediately find a way to watch it's first season (as soon as you're done reading this article, at least). The Australian import -- which got picked up for US release on Pivot -- is a half hour comedy-drama based on the autobiographical stand-up of 26-year-old gay Aussie comedian Josh Thomas. Drawing consistent comparisons to "Girls," "Louie" and "Enlightened" (who doesn't want to be compared to those amazing shows?) the first season gained a cult following, and the second should be an event as far as we're concerned. 

There's no trailer for season 2 yet, so here's the season 1 trailer as a reminder:


Queer Film Festivals

When/where can you go to them? All the time, and all over. We recently posted a preview of May's LGBT film festival calendar, and there will be plenty more where that came from with dozens of cities around the world hosting such events through August. 

Why should you be excited them? I know including LGBT Film Festivals on this list might feel like a cheap attempt at rounding it out to ten, but seriously: They're such amazing opportunities to see not only the best LGBT films eventually coming to theaters near you, but also the many that probably won't. Check back with us for a preview of the best films the summer circuit has to offer in the coming weeks and look out in your own area for when and where an LGBT film festival is happening.

Check out the Sundance Q&A for George Takei doc "To Be Takei," likely to be a fixture (often with Takei himself) at pretty much every queer film festival around:


The Skeleton Twins

When/where can you watch it? In theaters on September 19th (okay, we know, this doesn't sound like summer but it technically still is! And this film is too good to keep off the list).

Why should you be excited for it? "The Skeleton Twins" gave us a very notable new queer voice in co-writer and director Craig Johnson when it premiered at Sundance this year, and you best go see what he has to offer. Starring Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader as estranged siblings who come together after Hader's openly gay character tries to kill himself, "Twins" mixes melancholy and hilarity in its ode to family needing to stick together. And while Wiig is reliably great, Hader gives one of the most layered, moving performance of the year. Between this and Stefon, Hader is quickly drifting into gay icon territory, as far as we're concerned.

No trailer yet, but here's a feature from the Sundance Film Festival where director Johnson talks about the film:


Test

When/where can you watch it? In theaters and on VOD come June 6th.

Why should you be excited for it?   Set in 1985 San Francisco, Chris Mason Johnson's "Test" follows two modern dancers (Scott Marlowe and Matthew Risch) who develop a relationship amidst the increasing paranoia coming out of the onset of the AIDS epidemic. It's a refreshingly unpretentious and wholly affecting film that fits nicely in the all too small canon of narrative films about HIV/AIDS (and offers a nicely complimentary option after you see "The Normal Heart").

Watch the film's trailer:


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