Teen drama “Heartstopper” became a surprise hit last year after its Netflix release, earning a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes and breaking viewership records for LGBTQ+ programming. Its second season, which dropped on Aug. 3, debuted at the second spot in Netflix’s most-watched list.
Based on the graphic novel series by Alice Oseman, “Heartstopper” tells the story of young, British LGBTQ students coming to terms with adulthood and their burgeoning sexuality. The relationship between a quiet and out teen Charlie Spring (Joe Locke) and a popular rugby player Nick Nelson (Kit Connor) takes center stage.
While season one ended with the pair finally together, this new season explores struggles and criticism that the two boys face as a couple.
However, the second season grants much more screen time to the other main characters for a rich set of episodes full of several complex storylines. By telling in-depth stories about a lesbian couple, a young trans girl and a teen discovering asexuality, “Heartstopper” shows the diverse types of queerness while remaining genuine.
Unlike other LGBTQ stories that focus on suffering and trauma, this colorful show commits to pure happiness — these characters smile, laugh and enjoy life with each other.
Visually, the entire show is bathed in gold light: this bright cinematography combined with the vibrant visual effects further create a joyful, warm feeling.
Fans of the comic book will appreciate how closely the show aligns with the original comic book. Throughout the series, animated leaves like the ones that appear in the comic book appear during pivotal moments between characters.
As you watch these scenes, pay attention to the well-curated soundtrack featuring music by LGBTQ artists — these soft, gentle songs complement how the characters feel and interact with one another.
This heartfelt show will make you smile, laugh, cry and root for these clumsy teenagers as they sort out their feelings. It’s a story worth watching.