6. The Loud House (Nickelodeon)
For the most part, Nickelodeon shows are the silliest of the silly. This is especially true with “The Loud House.” The series tells the story of Lincoln Loud, the middle child in a family of eleven. Not only is he the middle child, he’s also the only boy. While having 12 children is out of the ordinary, it’s not the most trailblazing aspect of the show. That part comes courtesy of Lincoln’s best friend Clyde McBride – well, more specifically, his family.
Clyde is the adopted son of Howard and Harold McBride, Nickelodeon’s first-ever gay couple. Ironically, Lincoln’s last line before the couple is introduced is, “This is it! Time to make history!” Along with being the network’s first gay couple, Harold and Howard are also a biracial couple.
While the network did announce in advance that the couple would be introduced, the actual introduction was smooth and natural. They didn’t make the men overly flamboyant, or stereotypically gay. Disney Channel attempted a move like this in 2014, introducing a same-sex couple in its series “Good Luck, Charlie.” Now, following the success of “The Loud House,” Disney has taken things a step further, depicting its first same-sex kiss.
Once again, this destroys stereotypes before kids even have time to form them. Kids adopted by same-sex couples finally see their lives portrayed on screen. The work is by no means finished, but this is a critical step for children’s programming.
These six shows have made huge strides in network television. One can only hope this trend continues, and our youngest viewers continue to pave the way.