Queer Stream: One Day at a Time and refreshing queer representation

Since we could all use a mental break from the chaos of the quarantimes, we’ve launched Queer Stream, a series of short essays highlighting great queer TV and film you can stream right now. Today we’re talking about the delightful sitcom One Day at a Time.

One Day at a Time is a queer reboot of the 70s sitcom of the same name, except this time it’s focused on Penelope Alvarez, a nurse and veteran, and her family: her kids Elena and Alex, and Lydia, Penelope’s mother. Within a classic sitcom format this series explores queerness, intergenerational understanding, Cubanx culture, US politics, class, race, and so much more. Deeply loved by viewers who fought hard for the series, One Day at a Time has even survived being canceled by Netflix after three seasons. In fact, Season 4 currently airs on Pop TV.

We’re big fans of One Day at a Time here at Bella Media Channel, so make sure to check out these great essays about how coming out shifts between Ellen and One Day at a Time and about Syd and coming out as nonbinary. In a time where there is still very little queer Latinx representation, Elena’s coming out and her family’s grappling with her identity represents a beacon of hope. While Penelope struggles with her daughter’s identity at first, she becomes a stalwart supporter. And Lydia, who we expect to be more challenging given her fervent faith, takes about 60 seconds to come around to supporting Elena as a lesbian. Add to that the inclusion of a nonbinary character starting in Season 2—and how everyone gets their pronouns right every single time—and you’ve got one heartwarming and important queer series.

Queer stream One Day at a Time at: Seasons 1-3 on Netflix, Season 4 on Pop TV

Queer characters: Elena, Syd, Pilar, Susan, Ramona, and more!

Queerest episode: “To Zir, With Love” (Season 2, Episode 3) – it’s hard to choose a queerest episode for a show partially built on queer Cubanx experiences, but this fun episode is all about gender identity and how to tell if someone likes girls. D’aw!

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