By Jordan Jones
Popular graphic novel and WEBTOON star, “Heartstopper,” premiered on Netflix April 22 of this year. Amassing a fanbase of over 52.1 million excited viewers worldwide, the eight-episode special made a splash across the online world!
“Heartstopper” shares a heartwarming tale of high school lovers Charlie Spring and Nick Nelson, highlighting their path to embracing the deepest parts of themselves and overcoming the various pressures around them. This coming-of-age, LGBTQ+ positive show was an instant hit for UK and US audiences, topping nearly every chart within just a day of its release.
“Heartstopper” truly feels like it does something differently, focusing not just on the traumatic experiences faced within the LGBTQ+ community, but instead providing a more positive, optimistic story revolving around our favorite duo. For several young queer viewers, this show represents a part of their lives that maybe weren’t as heard before—and that’s powerful.
Pulling an audience of thousands every week through popular app WEBTOON, the eight-chapter novel has been highly sought-after for a live action depiction for several months now. Rumors began circulating at the start of 2022 for a potential representation on Netflix, and come April, it was confirmed.
By no means did it disappoint!
Fans and critics alike agree that there’s an important message to share with the world between every page. From all the diverse, unique cast of characters to the impact it leaves on readers worldwide, this show does it right in a lot of ways. It’s a story that can leave everyone with something to appreciate, even those who don’t necessarily associate with the LGBT community.
That, to me, is a genius move that I feel helps normalize the show in a very healthy way. From the sometimes bubbly atmosphere to the heart wrenching moments between two stressed teens, it’s a show that many of us can relate to—especially those of us who have lived through the stress of coming out or feeling comfortable in your own sexuality.
Rated a perfect 100 percent on Rotten Tomatoes, it goes without saying that “Heartstopper” has touched the hearts of many. If you haven’t seen the show yet, I’d highly recommend giving it a watch; it’s only eight episodes, and it pulls inspiration directly from the graphic novel! Another season is likely already brewing beneath the surface, and I for one was thoroughly impressed (and felt heard!) with the representation this series accomplished.