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Grace Chu

Five animated characters who did not escape my gaydar


We’re here. We’re queer. And we’re going to force your daughter to wear fleece in public. And what better way to trick the young and impressionable into living a life of sin and collecting North Face outfits than to insert lesbian subtext into cartoon characters? Get ’em while they’re young!

Here is a short list of lesbian-ish animated characters, which should strike fear into the hearts of decent Americans everywhere.

Peppermint Patty
Every lesbian has raised her eyebrow at the tomboyish Peanuts character who had an ambiguous relationship with her BFF (girlfriend?) Marcie. Marcie, in fact, addresses Patty as “sir,” which leads me to believe that Patty is the first genderqueer cartoon character in existence. Peanuts creator Charles Schultz said that Peppermint Patty was inspired by tennis player Billie Jean King, and we all know about the King of tennis. Hint: When the King of Pop (RIP) sang that Billie Jean was not his lover, it wasn’t a lie.

Ah the bespectacled misanthrope Daria, who was born to attend an expensive private college, away from the unwashed masses of cheerleaders and jocks. She will either fall in love with a librarian or become one herself. Expect plenty of sex in the stacks with this one.

Tank Girl
If “queer” doesn’t leap off the page, you have more problems than I can count.

Lisa Simpson
Lisa Simpson was personally visited by representatives of the Seven Sisters colleges. (Okay, it was in a dream, but what does that say about her subconscious?) Need I say more?

Jessica Rabbit
A curvaceous red-headed bombshell who can have any man or woman in the world falls for a goofy rabbit wearing overalls. I don’t think so. Any dyke will tell you that Roger Rabbit is a beard. Miss Jessica Rabbit has chosen the least likely partner to give us the hint that she is one of us and is seeking her princess in shining armor. But will this princess be a swaggering butch or another power femme who understands that wearing makeup and high heels isn’t a sign of kowtowing to the patriarchy but is instead a subversive form of warpaint?

I’ve identified five, but I know that there are more lurking in Sappholand. What other animated characters set off your gaydar and why?

26 Responses to “Five animated characters who did not escape my gaydar”

  1. Roxy Says:

    Reggie from Rocket Power! http://aninetopia.tripod.com/reggiebig.gif

  2. bex Says:

    tula from pirates of dark water!


    Judy Funny (i mean just look at her buzzed cut)


  3. Emily Says:

    Cathy? Maybe there is a reason she has no success with guys… and she does love her cat..

  4. beebo Says:

    peppermint patty isn’t genderqueer – she’s being mislabeled by marcie. peppermint patty keeps telling marcie to stop calling her by the wrong pronoun. :)

  5. Grace Chu Says:

    Ya know… that thought actually crossed my mind after I posted this post. (Seriously!) But I figured that, since this is a lesbian blog, someone would bring that up, even though this is a silly post about cartoon characters. I was disappointed that no one hadn’t by the time I woke up, but better late then never! Go lesbians!

  6. Thorne Says:

    Okay. After a bad head change today I needed a good laugh. I’m so glad I found you via twitter (@MeanderingMuse #FF). Peppermint Patty is definitely queer. Marice (like any good femme after a hawt lil butchette) just happens to know it before patty has owned it.

  7. ameliaaardvark Says:

    Back when I was a little dork and watching more Sailor Moon than I can safely admit to without putting my dignity on the line, I always thought Sailor Uranus and Neptune were together, even though the series said they were cousins.

    Then I found out they actually were in the original Japanese version and the Americanized Sailor Moon folks thought that seemingly incestuous cousins who were firmly closeted were somehow better than straight up lesbians.
    Go figure.

  8. Elise Says:

    I cannot believe no one has mentioned Velma from Scooby-Doo yet. Along with P. Patty, girl is the poster child for dykey cartoon characters.

  9. Anon Says:

    Here is a clip of Peter from Family Guy visiting Marcie and Peppermint Patty:


  10. Molly Says:

    In one of the cartoons I watched as a kid, “Pepper Ann,” I suspect the title character may have been a lezzie. I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s ever had these sorts of thoughts. ^_^

  11. Crystal Says:

    Lor from the Weekenders was SO GAY.

  12. Quigley Says:

    Francine from that cartoon Arthur.
    Loves sports, hates any and all femininity, and for SOME reason puts up with that annoying Muffy girl(hmmmm, I wonder why)

  13. Sarah Says:

    OMG, I loved Daria. But my favorite was actually Jane Lane. Mmmm :-)

  14. ameliaaardvark Says:

    Dude… Did anyone watch Recess? Spinelli is gay perhaps?

  15. Emily Says:

    Spinelli defo no… she and TJ were meant to be… but Lor from the Weekenders is dead on… no room for disagreement there. Pepper Ann also has major potential.

    Maybe I should have noticed some foreshadowing when I was nicknamed Daria at a summer camp when I was 10…

  16. Erie Says:

    Poison Ivy in general, but particularily when she’s around Harley Quinn in any of the animated series. This is not just because of my childhood dream of living in the jungle and raising slightly deranged children with her, really.

    I’m tempted to say Harley is at least a little bit queer as well. Outside of her crazy mad Joker obsession/adoration, Ivy seems to be her healthy!relationship option, while Ivy despises most of the human race aside from Harley. Their love is so pure.

  17. Molly Says:

    Oh, how could I forget the Weekenders? It always came on right next to Pepper Ann. Yeah, definitely Lor; what about the one with the glasses, though? I think her name was Tish (sp?).

  18. reegirl Says:

    I’m thinking Dora the Explora

  19. Kaylee Says:

    reggie rocket was sooo gay. she set my gaydar off even when i was like 9. clearly the fact that she was my hero when i was little was major foreshadowing…

  20. Jessica Says:

    I though Pepper Ann’s little sister Moose was SO GAY!!! Though I like the idea of Pepper Ann being the gay one.

    Out of the Weekenders, I agree with Lor being gay, but my gaydar also goes off for Tino’s mom. Lol, or it’s just wishful thinking.

    I’d like to think Sandy Cheeks from Spongebob Squarepants is gay. I think she’s Spongebob’s beard and vice versa.

    The mom from Amy Poelher’s new cartoon, The Mighty B, seems super gay! I mean she has dread locks, is quite liberal, is a feminist, and pretty granola.

    Don’t know if this is a valid one or not, but I always Carmen Sandiego to be gay. Can’t recall if there was any subtext between her and Ivy. It’s been way too long since I’ve seen the show.

  21. Kristin Says:

    Definitely Velma from Scooby-Doo. No question about it.

  22. fufuberry Says:

    tank girl is awesome. aint a lesbian. nor do i think jessica rabbit is. this was a stupid thing to post on the internet. ill give ya props for your insight though i guess

  23. Morgana Says:

    velma and daphne were SOO a couple on scooby doo.

  24. Denise Says:

    Lisa is 8 years old. She’s not anything yet.

    Having said that, all arrows point to her being straight, or at least towards liking guys. She has dated boys (Ralph and Nelson, plus she falls in love with or has crushes on numerous others, including the actor named Corey, the environmentalist in “Lisa the Treehugger,” and another boy in the episode “Trilogy of Error,” and yet another in The Simpsons Movie).

    Also, there was an entire episode dedicated to Lisa’s college years (probably Harvard) where she meets and almost marries a Brit named Hugh. The episode is called “Lisa’s Wedding,” and I recommend it.

  25. Dan Says:

    1. Patty – no. She’s just sporty. Marcie’s the lesbian.
    2. Daria – no. Her sister, Quinn, however…
    3. Tank Girl – well, not the one in the movie. Being Punk Rock doesn’t make you a lesbian.
    4. Lisa – could go either way.
    5. Jessica Rabbit – spot on.

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