and lovable.

When I was a kid growing up in the in the 90s into the early 2000s, I honestly didn’t know what being gay meant. From my earliest years to today in my late twenties I have always loved animation and the first time I ever even heard the word gay on TV was during THE FLINTSTONES theme. My relative told me the reason they sang that lyric was because gay meant happy. For awhile that was the only definition I knew. So I never understood why when somebody my age or a little older wanted to insult somebody they would call them “gay.” It wasn’t until I was a tween that a close relative came out to me. I finally understood what being gay meant.

In that instance I realized all those people were using this form of personal identity as an insult; it was wrong. I saw how backward our youth’s culture was. One of my best friends in high school came out to me, and I was so happy I smiled and said yippee when I got that AIM message. He was finally being who he really was. But then he said something that took away a bit of the joy. He told me the main reason I was one of the first people he told was because I had somebody I was close to who was also gay. I wondered “Why is that important?”

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Sadly, it’s because many teens weren’t comfortable with that idea back then and still today. I remember retroactively thinking about when I heard about gayness in life and then I thought back to THE FLINTSTONES. Why was that the only time I heard that word on kids TV? Why were there only couples in children’s media like Doug and Patty, Cory and Topanga or Mickey and Minnie? Couples that bring thoughts of joyful nostalgia even today. But why were there no representations of couples for kids/teens like my best friend and relative in media? Maybe if the idea of same-sex couples wasn’t so alien in kids TV, gay wouldn’t have been a slur in high school. This brings us to Nickelodeon’s THE LOUD HOUSE.

Loud House 2

THE LOUD HOUSE is an American animated television series created by animator and comic illustrator Chris Savino for Nickelodeon. This Sunday funnies style series revolves around the chaotic everyday life of a boy named Lincoln Loud, who is the middle child and only son in a large family of ten sisters. That may seem like way too many characters to remember, but after a few episodes not only do you remember their names but also what makes each Loud child so unique.

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The show has never been one to shy away from representing the under-represented in children’s media. In the first season, we are introduced to Lincoln’s best friend’s parents the McBride’s, a gay interracial couple. Their introduction wasn’t glamorous or dramatic, they simply were dropping off their son to his first sleepover at Lincoln’s house in an adorable scene in which the McBride’s tear up as their son takes another step towards becoming a young man.

Nickelodeon’s newest Nicktoon continues to break boundaries with their most recent episode, “L is for Love”. In this episode, Lincoln discovers a love letter addressed to one L. Loud. The obvious problem with this being that each of the Loud children is L. Loud. Throughout the episode, each sibling tries to figure out if their perspective crush is also their secret admirer. It isn’t till they receive the second letter in the mail that it is discovered that the Loud in question is a brunette. It is decided that Luna, Luan, Lynn, and Lisa will offer each of their romantic interests a token of their affection and see if they accept it.

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Luna is the only one who doesn’t give her token, a guitar pick, to her crush Sam. Luna believed her crush was just out of her league. Nevertheless, a third and final letter invites the Loud in question to a British rock and roll eatery Bangers & Mosh. The only one that could have been meant for is the rocker in the family, Luna. However, the children find out that the letter was meant for their father, from their mother, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their first date.

The parents explain that back in the day Rita was a crossing guard, and Lynn Sr. jogged her route. However, because she didn’t have the courage to talk to him, she would instead send him love letters. After the third note, Rita finally had the courage to ask him on a date, and they met at Bangers & Mosh, where they fell in love.

Luna is inspired by the story and decides to take action. She decides to slip a note into Sam’s Locker and just take a chance. A trio of bandmates, a male and two females, walk by the locker. Sam, who’s revealed to be a female, stops to open her locker. She opens her locker, and the love letter Luna slipped in falls out. Sam picks it up, reads the letter…

And you know what Sam did when she saw it?

 

She smiled!

This wasn’t an act of malice with an agenda or ulterior motive, but an act of young romance from a young girl who had a crush. I hope one day a young viewer finds themselves liking a Sam and instead of thinking they are weird or different, instead they’ll think “I’m like Luna Loud” and that’s wicked awesome!

Make sure to check your local listings to catch up on LOUD HOUSE!

Click Here for more LOUD HOUSE!

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