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Superlatives: The Best LGBT Characters on TV in 2014

Superlatives: The Best LGBT Characters on TV in 2014

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This year's crop of LGBT characters on TV had us thinking they deserve awards -- so we made some up.

dnlreynolds

As 2014 comes to a close, it is time to reflect on the standout cast of LGBT characters from television this year. Viewers saw some longtime favorites leave, some promising ingenues arrive, and others carry on and rejoice in season renewals. But who were the best? The brightest? The most badass? Take a look at the superlatives from this year's lineup.

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Class Flirt: Kalinda Sharma, The Good Wife

There's no bigger tease on television than Kalinda Sharma (Archie Panjabi), the super sleuth (and super sexy) investigator for the Chicago law firm Florrick, Agos, & Lockhart. The bisexual Sharma has used her powers of persuasion to seduce both men and women throughout the six seasons of the popular CBS drama, and her flirtations will be sorely missed when her character departs this season.


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Best Looking: Patrick Murray, Looking

Patrick Murray (Jonathan Groff) was a shoe-in for the category of Best Looking, because, well, he is the star of HBO's Looking, in which he portrays a lost gay 20-something looking for love in San Francisco. Also, look at those arms! The Advocate can't wait for season 2 premiere on January 11, when viewers can once again admire Murray as well the other good-looking physiques of Dom, Richie, Agustin, Doris, and Kevin (Russell Tovey!).


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Most Musically Talented: The Glee Club

How can it be? Is it truly the last season of Glee? Since 2009, the Fox drama has provided a showcase for some of the queerest entertainment and characters on television. Goodbye, Kurt and Blaine! So long, Santana and Brittany! Farewell, Unique! For years of songs old and new, you've all earned the superlative of Most Musically Talented.


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Most Likely to Succeed: Maura, Transparent

The debut of the Amazon series Transparent, which was recently nominated for two Golden Globe awards, marked a watershed moment in television for the portrayal of its heroine Maura, a transgender woman in her 70s who comes out to her family. Maura's journey illustrates that one is never too old to begin a new chapter in life, and The Advocate can't wait to see what Maura accomplishes next.


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Class Clown: Bianco Del Rio, RuPaul's Drag Race

Bianco Del Rio won season 6 of RuPaul's Drag Race for her display of charisma, uniqueness, nerve and talent. And her strongest talent by far is her ability to make others laugh. Through the season, viewers came to love Bianca for her quick wit and sassy commentary of the other contestants, which was refined through a lifetime of working in entertainment. By bonding with fellow contestant Trinity after she came out as HIV-positive, Bianca proved she had a heart as well.

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Cutest Couple: TIE: Amy & Karma, Faking It/ Mitch & Cam, Modern Family

Mitch and Cam, the gay couple on ABC's Modern Family, has changed the hearts and minds of millions of viewers across the country who tune in weekly to see the hilarious and adorable couple raise their adopted daughter Lily. In this respect, their contributions to LGBT rights are invaluable. But The Advocate would be remiss not to mention Amy and Karma of MTV's Faking It. Though A & K are a "fake" couple, their relationship has raised provocative and important questions about love and identity to a younger generation of viewers.


Superlatives007_0Teacher's Pet: Connor Walsh, How to Get Away With Murder

Connor Walsh (Jack Falahee) is one of the standout pupils of law professor Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) on ABC's How to Get Away With Murder. He'll do anything to get to the head of the class, including sleeping with men to get leads on important cases. Through his many sexual exploits on the show, Connor has accomplished the unthinkable: he's educated the viewers of network television on the art of rimming. And that's a lesson they'll never forget.


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Best Dressed: Pam De Beaufort, True Blood

With heavy hearts and a bit of relief, viewers said goodbye to HBO's True Blood, the long-running vampire drama that boasted one of the most diverse and LGBT-inclusive casts of characters on television. But the one who gay fans may miss most of all is Pam, the sharp-witted, Sookie-hating, retired brothel madame who had some of the best one-liners throughout the show's run. Women, especially, had taken note of her fierce portrayal and superior sense of style, telling the actress who portrays her, Kristin Bauer van Straten, on more than one occasion, "It's so nice to see a lesbian character who's a snappy dresser." For breaking down stereotypes of sartorial choices of queer women everywhere, The Advocate bestows the Best Dressed superlative on Pam.


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Most Athletic: Nate Kulina, Kingdom

The writer of this article has not seen Kingdom, which lives in a faraway place called the Audience Network. But one certainly has seen a lot of Nick Jones, whose chiseled physique has graced magazines and media appearances throughout the past several months in promotion of his role as a MMA fighter, who may not identify as gay, but recently was the recipient of oral sex from another man in an alley way. Yes, perhaps Kingdom is a show worth binge-watching.


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Most Changed Since Freshman Year: Piper Chapman, Orange Is the New Black

When viewers first saw Piper Chapman at the onset of season 1 of Netflix's Orange Is the New Black, she was scared, powerless, and unaccustomed to her new environment of a woman's correctional facility. She was almost starved to death by the vengeful Russian cook. A crazy evangelical woman nearly stabbed her to death. But season 2 has seen great progress for Piper. She's come a long way, climbed up the social ladder of the prison, lost her naivete, and realized she's not quite the victim she thought she was. We're all a little guilty of something, aren't we, Piper? And we must all change sometimes, in order to survive.

dnlreynolds
30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff & Wayne Brady

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Daniel Reynolds

Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.
Daniel Reynolds is the editor of social media for The Advocate. A native of New Jersey, he writes about entertainment, health, and politics.