10 Bisexual TV Characters, Ranked by Quality of Representation

For the very end of biweek, I have compiled a list of bisexual women that I’ve watched on TV and analyzed their quality of bisexual representation. Here we go!

10. Alice Pieszecki, The L-Word

Although Alice reigned from one of the queer classics, she just barely makes the list. As the only self-proclaimed bisexual regular on the show, Alice becomes a token amongst the assembly of lesbians, and a target for many punchlines from them too. But she gets kudos for identifying as bisexual and not shying away from that label.

9. Naomi Campbell, Skins

Naomi is one of two female queer characters in generation two. Unlike Emily, Namoi’s sexuality is presented fluidly as she displays attraction to both men and women, although throughout the show she pursues attraction with almost exclusively women. Her coming out storyline overshadows her character during its peak, but stays true to the experience. She would be further up the list, (SPOILER) had she not died by the end of the series.

8. Piper Chapman, Orange is the New Black

Honestly if this was just a ranking of character quality, we all know Piper would probably be the last on the list. But this aside, Piper displays attraction to both men and women in the show, and the coming out story is minimized to flashbacks. The only real issue with her sexuality is how other characters perceive it. Notice how straight characters call her a lesbian and gay characters call her straight? Biphobia.

7. Sarah Manning, Orphan Black

Sarah’s bisexuality does not come up until season four when she engages in a threesome. Her sexuality is treated as a non-issue and likely predates the pilot. Her portrayal has a bit of a negative stereotype by associating bisexuality with threesomes and a general promiscuous attitude. Sarah, however, is a very complex character whose sexuality becomes just one of her many facets.

6. Brittany Pierce, Glee

What’s great about Brittany is that she is one of the few (maybe only?) queer characters on Glee who does not have a coming out story and whose sexuality/gender is treated as a non-issue. She simply presents her sexuality as fluid and throughout the show dates both men and women. Her character, however, lacks complexity, but in a sort of charming way.

5. Annalise Keating, How to Get Away with Murder

Annalise is such a complex protagonist who happens to be a black bisexual woman. (Yes she gets bonus points for being black.) Her sexuality is such a beautiful side story to her complexity that it adds an element of intrigue without even coming close to being her defining quality. Although she is a great character, her intentions are questionable at best and malicious at worst, dropping her down a few places on the ranking.

4. Kat Edison, The Bold Type

Kat’s coming out storyline has been treated with a refreshing lighthearted attitude that reflects how its not exactly an problem for her, and definitely not one for her friends. She questions her sexuality often, but in offhand comments that reflect how much of a non-issue it is (although it is still developing). She too gets bonus points for being a person of color.

3. Clarke Griffin, The 100

Despite how much The 100 screwed over their queer viewers with the controversial way they handled a lesbian character, Lexa, Clarke stands as a very strong and young bisexual protagonist. She displays strong leadership alongside her attractions to both men and women. Even better, her sexuality is never questioned by any character, not even herself.

2. Delphine Cormier, Orphan Black

Delphine is high up this list because she is one of the few characters on here who use the word ‘bisexual’ to define themselves (believe it or not). And unlike Alice, she is not treated as the token bisexual in this cast of characters. She falls head-over-heels for a woman for the first time in her life and comes to this “bisexuality” (her word!) conclusion in a stunning two episodes. Although she is a self-proclaimed bisexual, the show does not allow Delphine to pursue any opposite-sex attractions.

1. Callie Torres, Grey’s Anatomy

And here we have Callie Torres. Callie is a smart, sassy, and another beautifully self-proclaimed bisexual. Although her coming out story is on the lengthier side, her sexuality allows her character to grow, and allows other characters to grow to acceptance. And unlike Delphine, her bisexuality is consistent throughout the series as the gender of her partners change often. She also gets non-white bonus points.

Are some of your favorite bisexual characters not on the list? Let me know in the comments! I’ll already admit there’s a couple that should be on the list that I just haven’t watched yet!

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