Popular black gay web series
The Come up is an LGBT reality show on Youtube about black LGBT entrepreneurs which is directed by Karon Wilson. I was binge-watching some shows on Youtube and came upon The Come up. I only watched one episode and was hooked. The fights and drama are intense, especially during the reunion episodes. The show is set in different major cities including Atlanta, Miami, and New York City.
One of the first seasons of the Come Up was set in New York. New York-bred persons have a flair and distinct personality which gave The Come Up New York a certain edge. A new season just started a few weeks old with some veteran characters including the fashionable Oneil, vlogger Spanky, and hairstylist Andre. New characters have been added to the cast which has given it an interesting vibe.
Bad Boyz Club
Bad Boyz Club is a black gay reality series produced by Gemini Filmz. The man behind the camera is Karon Wilson who also produced The Come Up. The concept of Bad Boyz Club is a male version of VH1’s Bad Girls Club. The first season was set in Boston and centered around black gay individuals living in the same home. Throughout the years Bad Boys Club has made dramatic improvements in production. Big ups Karon. The last season of Bad Boyz Club was a huge success. Definitely my favorite. The views surpassed one million which I expected. From the first episode to the intense reunion, the show was very entertaining. If you haven’t watched Bad Boyz Club get on your couch and look it up on Youtube.
Chasing Atlanta is one of my favorite black gay reality web series. I found out about the show a couple of months ago after randomly scrolling through Youtube. I was so excited about Chasing Atlanta that I binged watched it for a whole weekend. The web series is reality-based and is about a group of black individuals chasing their dreams in Atlanta including fashion designers, singers, and media personalities. The series gives an interesting perspective of the black gay social scene which can be fun, and entertaining but also very messy.
Veteran cast members:
Lauryn England- Lauryn is the sassy hairstylist who owns her own wigs at Kes. She’s only in her 20s and is making big moves. Honestly, when I first watched the episode of the first season I almost had a disdain for her after her conflict with her and castmate member Devon. The tension was so high between each other that they ended almost got into a physical altercation after only the 2nd episode that the show premiered. But then she showed a better side of her after she and Devon reconciled in the 2nd season.
Oliver Twixt- Oliver is a Morehouse graduate who’s making big strides as a rapper. I’m a big fan of rap and hip-hop music and even listened to underground music when I was much younger. And so I can pinpoint a lyrical rapper. And let me tell you Oliver knows how to spit and flow. Oliver seems to be one of the smartest castmates on Chasing Atlanta.
Cameron- Cameron is a fashion designer from Chicago, Il. He’s been on all the seasons of Chasing Atlanta. I admire his resilience as he fought his way through cancer.
Quentin Harris- Quentin is a media personality from Raeford, North Carolina. He has his own clothing line, #Dreamsare Real, which he created in January 2015. Last year he published his book Dreamer which empowers entrepreneurs to pursue their dreams. In the gay community, Quentin would be considered “trade” which is a man appearing to be straight who gives off masculine energy.
The Shit We do for Love
You’re probably like damn, another Atlanta-based reality show. Well, I have to give credit where it’s due. The Shit We Do for Love is a black gay web series involving the dating lives of black gay men. Dating is a struggle for many people, especially within the gay community. So often I walk into gay spaces and I hear horror stories of gay men’s dating lives. In the show, there is a dating coach who helps the cast navigate the dating scene. I recognized the dating coach from Instagram and can say that he’s knowledgeable about dating and black gay culture. One piece of valuable advice he gives is that heteronormativity can’t be applied when dating meaning that there should not be strict gender roles for a same sex couple.
Set it Off: ATL
This is another black gay reality show based in Atlanta. There was a pilot season in 2021 but the show actually premiered this year. The show features grown black gay and bisexual men from different walks of life. What’s different from this black gay web series from the other shows on this list is that the cast is older.
This web series is set in Dallas, Texas. The show follows the daily lives of black gay men from different walks of life. The confessionals by cast members including Tonio and Whitney with their witty and snarky commentary.
G-Status: ATL Hustle
G-Status: Atl Hustle is another reality show based in Atlanta, Georgia following the lives of black LGBTQ professionals within the entertainment and fashion industry. The show first aired in June 2018 and has amassed tons of views since that time. It is directed and produced by Tobijah Harriott. There are two seasons of G-Status which you can watch on Youtube, Apple Tv, Roku, and other video channels. Even though it’s an LGBT-themed show all types of people will enjoy watching the series. We black gays are very amusing and have a huge sense of humor as shown in the confessionals by the cast members. If you’re in Atlanta you can watch the live taping of the G-Status Atl Hustle reunion on November 7, 2020, at 2775 Premier Pkway, Suite 100, Duluth, GA, 30097. Tickets are $45.
Veteran cast members, G-Status Atl Hustle
Devon- Devon is my favorite character in the show. I like his charisma and energy which you can easily see in any of his confessionals. Devon has been on Chasing Atlanta, another black gay web series I enjoy watching. Devon owns his catering company, Taste of Royalty.
Kendrick- Regdrick is a makeup artist and hairstylist. I love her swag and in every confessional, she dresses on point. Keep slaying girl!!
Sherrod- Sherrod is an entertainer with different talents. He acts and acts among other things. He’s done porn in the past and has gotten some negative feedback for it. I don’t knock any adult entertainers. As long as you respect me, others, and yourself then we are good.
Ike- Ike aka Isaac is an R&B singer and native of Donaldsonville, Louisiana. Ike owns his clothing company Dasockboxx, a line of socks for different genders. Of all the castmates in the group, I find Ike to be the most diplomatic.
Circle City New York
Circle City New York is a reality show which features some of New York’s most popular black gay influencers. I live in New York so I had to make sure I keep up with the season premieres and episodes. What I like about the series is the realness of the characters. The show follows the lives of LGBT persons of color living their lives in the fast-paced New York City. The show is produced and directed by Lester Matthews who’s also known as Newnue. There are 4 seasons of the show which are all filmed in New York of course. .
Veteran cast members:
Melli B- Mellie B is a rapper from Rochester, NY who currently lives in Atlanta. Aside from rapping, he manages his business Lemon Brands, a creative agency, in which he works with brands and companies to help them with their marketing. Mellie B is also the owner of Frozen Lush, an ice cream shop. Mellie B is one of the most outspoken individuals in the show.
Kleionne- Chile, this man should be on America’s hot gay list of black gays. He’s a singer and dancer who’s making strides to make it in the music industry. Kleionne is probably the least dramatic individual in the show.
Styling Hollywood (no longer running)
Styling Hollywood is a Netflix series about the life of the power black gay couple Jason Bolden and Adair Curtis. Jason is a fashion stylist and Adair is an interior designer. They are a mature couple living in California and making big moves. They have worked with celebrity clients including Taraji P Henson and Gabrielle Union.
What I like about this black gay tv show is that Jason and Adair are shown in a positive light as successful entrepreneurs. I’ll keep it real. A lot of times black gay men are portrayed as either passive-aggressive, overly feminine, or snobbish in the media. In the show, Jason and Adair are shown as relatable characters.
Jerrod Carmichael: Rothaniel
HBO Max has a ton of LGBT and gay-friendly content. This includes shows and movies like Gentlemen Jack, The Bird Cage, Desert Hearts, Looking: The Movie, and Euphoria. There are some shows and movies with a lot of sex and drugs which to some can be considered inappropriate content; Nevertheless, HBO Max is a good platform for great shows. One good show is Jerrod Carminchael: Rothaniel. It’s actually a comedy stand-up series.
Loveworks (no longer running)
Loveworks is a reality web series that truly stands out from a lot of other black gay reality web series. Think of Good Morning America but with a relaxed and black gay twist. The show is hosted by black gay power couple, Juan & Gee Smalls, and filmed in their home. One thing I absolutely love about the show is it’s positive and educational.
Juan and Gee discuss taboo and common black LGBT topics like dating, divorce, racism, and differences within the LGBTQ communities. One of my favorite episodes was the “Kappa wedding”. It hit home to me because I’m in a black Greek fraternity and I could imagine the backlash they received.
What if I’m not a fan of reality shows?
There are other genres for the LGBTQ community including dramas, comedies, and even anime. Some of the most popular gay dramas are Queer Eye and Orange is the New Black. Gay anime include Bloom Into You and She-Ra. Streaming services like Netflix (The Netflix code for LGBT movies is 500), Hulu, and Amazon Prime have given us a plethora of LGBTQ shows and movies to watch; what’s new on LGBTQ Netflix is Smiley, Mars One, and Young Royals. There are even LGBTQ Indian movies like Dostana and Noblemen and openly gay directors in Bollywood like Apurva Asrani and Shonali Bose. Dekkoo is a streaming service that has one of the most LGBTQ shows.
As homosexuality has become more accepted in society more LGBTQ content has been produced on television and in films. Netflix has a bunch of LGBTQ-friendly shows like Queer Eye and Elite; Netflix doesn’t ask for gender so content is available for the whole LGBTQ+ spectrum. There’s a new genre called BL (boys love) which are Asian-inspired movies such as The Bos in the Band and Born Beautiful; BL became popular in Japan in the 1970s and though it has gay male characters it was targeted to women. BL is produced heavily in Thailand and Taiwan. Disney even had their first lead gay character played by Ethan Calde in the movie Strange world.
Today there is a lot more black LGBTQ representation in television and film. You’ll see more and more black queer content creators creating black gay films and web series of all categories including romance, comedy, and drama. I just listed a hot gay list of web series that you should watch. There are many more black gay web series but the ones I listed are some of my favorites.