Many teenagers were left awestruck by this concept of a fully LGBTQ+ show, which is something that can be backed up by the numbers. Hetero got more than a million views across social media before people had even caught a glimpse of the trailer. Now the trailer is out the following Hetero has on Instagram and Tiktok has grown out to over 55,000 followers and the count keeps going up with each passing day. One of the people whose attention was caught is the eighteen-year-old, queer singer Chloe Moriondo. You’ll be hearing her song I Want To Be With You at the beginning of the episodes, since it became Hetero’s theme song.
The set was filled with young people only, which is remarkable and quite different from a set filled with adults. When Mckenzie Shea was asked about what it was like working in this environment she said the biggest differences she noticed were in the way people interacted with each other. “To us, the comfort and boundaries of each person on set were the most important and came before anything else, especially when we were dealing with difficult subject material. Nobody was intentionally dismissed, talked over, disregarded, or disrespected. It was such a safe environment to work in." Sabina Etscheid also said they felt supported in every which way, when asked what the filming experience was like.
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The past couple of years the amount of LGBTQ+ representation on screen has been increasing, but to this day teens who are part of the community, often find themselves missing the representation they crave. The teens who worked on the show Hetero decided to change that by taking matters in their own hands and giving real, authentic LGBTQ+ representation a place in this world. One of the major things that make Hetero, originally titled Gay Straight Alliance, so authentic is that it was actually based on writer KJ Kieras’ real life experiences and their participation in the safe haven of their GSA at a Catholic high school.
In the show we follow the journey of five misfit friends called Quinn (Sabina Etscheid), Sarai (Jubilee Lopez), Zel (Adriane Watson), Mickey (Eden Blanford) and Cohen (Johan Blue). The group faces a tough task as they single handedly have to try and save the Gay Straight Alliance at their school from the unsympathetic principal. They're forced to recruit the school's heterosexual population to save their club. Saying they’re going the extra mile, would be putting it lightly, because the teens go as far as selling themselves out as "gay best friends" to the school's population. During the process they learn about love, pride, and ultimately, how to be (or not to be) Hetero.
Now you’ve heard all about this show, you might be wondering how it actually came along. Understandable, because it has been quite the journey. Hetero was being written by KJ Kieras four years before the production began. The pre-production began in October 2020 when KJ and Bentley met each other online. The two co-founded Third Charm Films and brought the crew together.The cast and crew for hetero consisted of volunteers from the Pacific Northwest. filming took place, summer 2020 located in Seattle, Washington (All covid guidelines were followed)
It’s clear this entire project has come together, because of passion and dedication from all people involved. It was made with love. The team values the story of creating Hetero as a collective group achievement that thrived in their dedication to the message of the story: it was created to forever celebrate the people and place (GSA) that has been so important to how teens find their place in the world and beyond. This message you can only support and it’s incredibly important projects like these exist, because like mentioned in the beginning of this article: the industry needs change. So, if you’re looking for a new show to binge make sure to take Hetero into consideration. (Oh and if you’d like to see more after finishing season 1, it might be good to know season 2 production is planned for July-August 2021 after the pride month fundraising campaign.)