Twenty follows the story of Maya, her girlfriend Catalina, and her group of eclectic friends as they navigate careers, love, and life in their early twenties. With two seasons under their belt, over 5 million views, and over 35,000 subscribers, this hit LGBT comedy has been described as "brutally honest and relatable" by Pride.com and "diverse and incredibly binge-worthy " by Into.
The Directors StatemenT
I was fourteen years old watching an episode of a primetime TV drama with some of my friends when suddenly, it happened. Two of the female characters kissed. I was caught off guard. My stomach dropped into my feet as I immediately became very aware of my every move; terrified that someone in the living room would look over at me at that exact moment and somehow instantaneously know that I was gay. After the tender and romantic moment, the two women go on to murder 200 innocent bystanders in a terrorist attack. The first women I ever saw kiss on television turned out to be sociopathic murderers.
I remember my disappointment seeing a community that I identified with (albeit in secret at that time) being represented so poorly. Everywhere I looked, the representation of LGBT women in film and television was almost always negative. Whether the character was a predatory lesbian, or a straight woman hooking up with another woman for the pleasure of a male character, it seemed that relationships between two women were never intended to do anything more than serve as click bait B plots.
Comedy became my safe space during my closeted years. Being able to laugh at the crazy antics of lovable characters is a wonderful distraction from the chaos of the world we live in. I spent days binging Golden Girls, Louie, Miranda, Modern Family, and anything I could get my hands on with well-rounded and enticing characters. As much as I adored these shows I was still disappointed that not one of them had a prominent lesbian character. I wanted to be able to create something equally intelligent and funny, but with strong, multifaceted queer women.
My goal for Twenty is to open a doorway for comedies that are relatable to everyone while highlighting the experience of LGBT women in today’s world. As a now 22-year-old proud member of the LGBT community, I wish that something similar to ‘Twenty’ had been available to me when I was growing up. Societal expectations for female sexuality are often dictated through a male dominated perspective. Young female sexuality is almost always talked about in relation to men and in many ways men are expected to find your sexuality for you. They are expected to take you on the first date, to kiss you first, to take your virginity. This narrative is harmful to young men and women regardless of sexuality but for queer women it can often be detrimental to developing a true understanding of self. Discovering and owning your sexuality as a young queer woman should be exciting and empowering and I hope that Twenty can open a doorway for more media that fosters that kind of self-discovery.