Show winning hearts

TWO Northbridge counsellors say a groundbreaking Netflix program which dropped in April is building bridges between the LGBTQIA+ and straight community.

The Netflix TV adaptation of the Heartstopper graphic novels by Alice Oseman avoids the stereotypical queer tragedy of mainstream Hollywood. 

Rotten Tomatoes reviewers have given it a 100 per cent rating with a 98 per cent average audience score, which one of the counsellors (who only wanted to be identified as Daniel) said was an indication of its broad appeal.

“It is so easy to consume, whoever you are,” the Freedom Centre peer educator said. 

Daniel said Heartstopper “isn’t erasing the issues that still exist for queer people, queer young people especially,” but treated them with a deft touch.

It was important for an audience “to be able to understand and empathise with their experiences”.

Within the first two days Heartstopper hit the top 10 of English series with 23.9 million viewing hours globally. 

Daniel’s colleague Oakly said the show which didn’t hyperfocus on any particular queer identity, but showed a range of people integrated into general society.

Oakly said having queer sexuality and gender validated at such a young age was something that most of the queer community wished they had. A common feeling for the young people that Oakly deals with was a “feeling of missing out on this quintessential, beautiful queer narrative”.

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