Writer / Reader / Fandom Extraordinaire
Chiara / August 30, 2018 , Thu / films & music, lgbtqia

It’s been a while since I shared five of my favourite LGBTQIA+ shows, and since then I’ve discovered and fallen in love with more. And also remembered some that I didn’t include in the first post. So! Here are some more queer shows I love…

1. black sails

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I only started watching Black Sails about two weeks ago, and I am Obsessed. There are four main queer characters in this badass pirate show and it makes my heart so happy!!

Black Sails makes you think that it’s a run of the mill dudebro show, and then all of a sudden it’s like: hey, my whole premise is gay. And it’s fucking brilliant. I want more shows like this, nay, need more shows like this.

I’m nearly done with the second last season and I don’t want this to end. I am pretty sure I’ll go back and rewatch it because the storylines are so complex I’m certain I missed some things along the way. And also, I would get to see my bloodthirsty sons and daughters again, yay <3

2. lost girl

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I had absolutely no idea that Lost Girl was about a bi heroine until I started watching it. So much shame on the world for not hyping up this show!! It’s a queer urban fantasy show!! And also really good!!

I read an article about Lost Girl and the fact that Bo is bi (sadly, the word is never used in the show). It was pretty good, and I liked the fact that the writer/creator (can’t remember who the interview was with, sorry) was like: we made the decision to make Bo’s two love interests (one of whom is a guy, the other a girl) equally important on the screen, in both romantic and sexual ways.

So yeah, Lost Girl is a about a succubus so there’s quite a lot of sexual content, but to be honest I never felt like it was fetishising. In all honesty, I felt like Bo and her girl’s love and relationship was more nuanced and invested in than her and her boy’s.

All in all, I really enjoyed watching Lost Girl, and I was super invested by the end. Also, there’s a bunch of side queer characters – Bo isn’t the only one!!

3. buffy

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Okay, so this is not just one of my fave queer shows, but one of my fave shows, period. And even though I was never happy with the way Willow’s sexuality was handled (let us never forget the “I’m gay now” line), and the fact that there was a tragic lesbians storyline, it still counts.

I first watched this show when I was about 15, so around the same age as Buffy is in the beginning. I thought that it was the coolest fucking thing ever, and I still kind of do. I have grown more aware of its problems since I was a teen, but I can’t erase it’s importance to me, or the fact that it was one of very few TV shows in the nineties/early noughties that featured queer characters at all.

So, problematic? Yes. But also featuring a cute as hell and Super Soft f/f couple? Yes.

4. dawson’s creek

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Okay so  am 100% not ashamed to admit that this show is my life. I was but a wee lass when it was on TV so I only remember season five and onward, but since then I have lost count of how many times I have watched Dawson’s Creek. It is my childhood, my teen years, and my adulthood. It is everything to me.

And also has a gay character in Jack, bless. There was still a bit of fumbling regarding Jack’s sexuality in the beginning, but to be honest they got to the point of it pretty quickly. And he had just as much of a romantic storyline as the rest of the characters. In fact, his romantic endgame was so strong. One of the strongest, to be honest.

5. degrassi: next class

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I love this show. I’ve loved this show in all its iterations across time, and have been mildly obsessed since I was a teeny tot watching Next Generation on ABC, with that woman warning parents about the content, hahaha. Even though when I started watching this Next Class on Netflix, I had no idea who any of the characters were or what their relationships had been, I was still hooked. The drama in this show is like nothing else and I live for it.

There was a bit of bi erasure in one episode, though, which I was not a fan of. And I can’t remember if the character was brought up on it or not… However, besides that one incident that I remember, I’ve loved all that I’ve watched of this show and I eagerly await more.

Have you watched any of these shows? Do you want to? What are some of your favourite shows with LGBTQIA+ characters?

Chiara / July 13, 2018 , Fri / food

Hello there! You may or may not know this, but I’m vegan. But that doesn’t mean that I want to spend half my life cooking. I didn’t suddenly turn into an amazing cook when I decided to go vegan, nor did it make me want to try outlandish recipes that have 67 ingredients, 42 steps, and only a three hour cooking time! I’m guessing there are other vegans out there like me, so I decided to share some actually simple vegan recipes here on my blog. Often, there will be a gluten free or super cheap option as well! Today we are cooking…

fried rice

Serves: Two massive bowls, three moderate bowls

What You’ll Need:

– 1 cup of rice (I use Jasmine because it’s yummy but you can use whatever tickles your fancy)

– 2 cups of frozen vegetables (I use onion, peas, corn, and capsicum, but again you can use whatever you want!)

– 1-2 tablespoons of soy sauce (to taste)

– 1 tablespoon of oil (I use olive, you can use whatever!)

– sprinkle of pine nuts (these are high in iron)

How You’ll Cook It:

1) Bring a pot of water to the boil and then add rice (yes, I cook my rice by boiling but you can also use the absorption method)

2) After you’ve added the rice to your pot, put your saucepan on a medium heat and add the oil. Put the two cups of frozen veggies in the microwave

3) When the veggies are cooked, toss them in the saucepan with a sprinkle of pine nuts. When the rice is cooked, add that to the pan as well

4) Stir in the soy sauce, and cook until sizzling and non-sticky

5) Serve and eat!

Gluten Free Option:

Use a gluten free soy sauce! Kikkoman does one, and I just found out that Fountain soy sauce is gluten free, as well

Under $5 Option:

Coles brand rice – $1.40

Coles brand soy sauce – $1.90

Coles brand mixed frozen vegetables (which are actually not crappy!) – $1.60

Total: AUD $4.90

(Coles brand pine nuts are only $3.80 and last for a long time cause they’re so tiny, so it you wanted to add them the meal is still under $10 :D)

So there you have it! A super simple vegan recipe for fried rice. This is absolutely one of my go-to meals cause the prep time is short, and the end result is both yummy and good for you, which is awesome. If you try this one, let me know what you think!

All my love,

Chiara / June 11, 2018 , Mon / this book is lgbtqia

This Book is LGBTQIA+ is my way of putting a spotlight on books that may not be widely recognised as such. I want these books to have as much exposure as they can, and I hope you add some of these titles (or all) to those never-ending TBR piles!

Today’s book is:

the alchemists of loom by elise kova

Title: The Alchemists of Loom (Loom Saga #1)

Author: Elise Kova

Publisher: Keymaster Press

Genre/s: Fantasy/Steampunk

Her vengeance. His vision.

Ari lost everything she once loved when the Five Guilds’ resistance fell to the Dragon King. Now, she uses her unparalleled gift for clockwork machinery in tandem with notoriously unscrupulous morals to contribute to a thriving underground organ market. There isn’t a place on Loom that is secure from the engineer turned thief, and her magical talents are sold to the highest bidder as long as the job defies their Dragon oppressors.

Cvareh would do anything to see his sister usurp the Dragon King and sit on the throne. His family’s house has endured the shame of being the lowest rung in the Dragons’ society for far too long. The Alchemist Guild, down on Loom, may just hold the key to putting his kin in power, if Cvareh can get to them before the Dragon King’s assassins.

When Ari stumbles upon a wounded Cvareh, she sees an opportunity to slaughter an enemy and make a profit off his corpse. But the Dragon sees an opportunity to navigate Loom with the best person to get him where he wants to go.

He offers her the one thing Ari can’t refuse: A wish of her greatest desire, if she brings him to the Alchemists of Loom.

Why This Book is LGBTQIA+

I usually go into a book knowing that a main character is going to be queer, but with The Alchemists of Loom I had no idea. Most likely because I read the book before release so there was no one to tell me that the main character, Ari, is bisexual. But I guess that lack of knowledge made it all the more exciting when I realised that Ari was bi because I hardly ever get to read a surprise queer book.

It made me super excited to read a steampunk fantasy novel with a bi protagonist. We hardly get bi girl characters, and we get fantasy novels with queer protagonists even less. So a queer girl fantasy novel? HELL TO THE YES.

I really quite enjoyed The Alchemists of Looml. The world building was unique, and the storyline is one that I was intrigued by!

Side note: Another POV character is revealed to be queer in book three! So there are two queer girl POV character in this trilogy *cheers*

If you want to read my full review, head over here.

(trigger warning: cannibalism, multiple murders (including killing a sibling), physical assault, organ trafficking, use of ableist language, and racist elements (presented between fantasy creatures) in this novel)

Chiara / May 4, 2018 , Fri / queer movies i've watched recently

1. the limehouse golem

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The Limehouse Golem isn’t a queer movie per se but the main character – Detective Kildare – is gay. There isn’t really any storyline regarding his sexuality, but to be honest I was just excited that I watched a movie with a surprise queer protagonist.

In general, The Limehouse Golem was pretty incredible. I was absolutely riveted from the moment it started to the moment it ended. The actors were brilliant, the storyline was incredible, and the cintematography, sets, and costumes were sublime. If you’re into period mysteries then you should definitely give this one a go.

2. love, simon

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I finally saw Love, Simon! And it was so incredibly gorgeous. I actually saw this one with the queer youth that I work with, and I think it made the experience all the more special. To see these young people see themselves on the big screen was absolutely amazing.

Love, Simon was quite different to the book, which surprised me a little. But every adaptation has its changes. And I think the changes made were the best ones to make the story fit the screen. It was honestly so incredible to see a queer rom-com for teens make it to theatres. I cannot hope enough that Hollywood realises that the time has well and truly come for movies about queer teens to hit the screen, and that non-queer teens aren’t the only ones who deserves to see themselves, who deserve love stories.

I seriously cannot wait for this movie to be released on DVD because I know I’ll be watching it again and again.

3. call me by your name

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I m so very uninterested in people trying to pit this movie and Love, Simon against each other. They are completely different stories, different genres, and also set in different times and places. So that’s that for me talking about the two together.

Call Me By Your Name was a beautiful piece of cinema. It is slow and luxurious, which is perfect because it’s set in the summer and what is summer but slow and luxurious? It was so cute, honestly, to watch Elio’s feelings for Oliver change from the beginning of the movie to the end. The arc of those emotions and the relationship between the two were hands down my favourite aspects of this movie.

There were a lot of poignant moments in the film, and I was almost in tears when Elio was talking to his father toward the end. That conversation was such a good one, and so affirming for Elio, and I adored it. I adored his relationship with his family overall, really. Another one of my favourite scenes is where they’re all on the couch together and the mother is reading to her husband and son. It was beautiful.

I loved this movie and I know I’ll be watching it again.

4. professor marston and the wonder women

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I was instantly keen to watch this movie when I found out it was about the polyamorous relationship between Professor Marston, his wife, and another woman. I’ve never seen polyam rep in a movie before so I was Excited. And it didn’t disappoint.

Professor Marston and the Wonder Women was an interesting movie about the origins of Wonder Woman, and the two women that inspired her creation. There wasn’t a whole lot about the creation of Wonder Woman, apart from a few scenes, as the bulk of the movie focussed on the relationships between the Professor, his wife, Elizabeth, and their partner, Olive.

It was interesting to see how their relationship progressed because they faced a lot of hurdles. It was especially hard to see how the public’s judgement of their relationship influenced Elizabeth, but it’s okay: this queer movie has an overall happy ending. The best part of Professor Marston and the Wonder Women was seeing the three of them in a happy, loving relationship together. It was cute as hell, to be honest.

5. princess cyd

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Princess Cyd came up when I was looking through Netflix’s queer movie section. It was around an hour and a half long, and about a queer girl so I decided to give it a go. Overall, I was kind of underwhelmed.

The story follows Cyd, who stays a few weeks with her aunt, who she hasn’t seen in many years. I think I wasn’t a huge fan of Princess Cyd because of Cyd herself. She was very strange, but not in a cool way. The way she spoke to her aunt sometimes was pretty rude, especially since her aunt was at least trying to make Cyd feel welcome after her dad shipped her off. Also, I think that talking to your estranged aunt about her sex life is… weird.

The best part about this movie was the romance between Cyd and Katie. Though I really would have liked some more scenes with and about Katie because I think she was an interesting character and her potential wasn’t used to the fullest. Most of all, I would have liked to see her talk about her gender, since Cyd’s aunt and Cyd had a tiny conversation about it but it was never brought up with Katie herself.

Cyd came off as pan to me, because when there was yet another sexual conversation with strangers, Cyd answered “everything” when asked what she “liked”. I would have loved to see more conversation about that, as well. But I think Princess Cyd was less about queerness and identity than about a slice of life and summer romance.

Have you watched any of these movies? Do you want to? Have you seen any LGBTQIA+ movies recently?

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