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my recommendations

A list of media that I've consumed that I would recommend you check out if you haven't! I've tried to exclude media that I think most people have consumed at this point, but there are a few exceptions to this. This is all in no particular order except that similar types of media (ie, games, movies, ect) are grouped together. Also, I won't be giving the rating for each of these pieces of media, so please take care to look it up for yourself and figure out if it's right for you. Hopefully, you find a new favorite!

SPARKLECARE

TYPE: webcomic

WARNINGS: cartoon gore, eyestrain, torture, abuse of psych ward patients by staff, involuntary detainment

Sparklecare (a reboot of the original comic by the same name) is the only webcomic recommendation I will be giving, because this is the only webcomic I keep up with! Sparklecare is a comic which commentates on the abuse of patients in mental hospitals, the lack of care given to those who go through this type of abuse, and the people that enable it. This comic follows a cast of anthropromorphic animal / furry mental patients as they navigate the hospital and try to escape. The characters the webcomic follows are charming, and there is a great system on the website where you read the comic that gives you trigger warnings for a comic page before viewing it. The Sparklecare cast is also very queer and neurodiverse! The only canon cishet is the main villain. (As it should be.)


BAD END THEATER

TYPE: video game

WARNINGS: references to religion, death, cartoon gore, implied homophobia

BAD END THEATER is a visual novel-style adventure/puzzle game where you get to select your character and explore a wide variety of terrible fates! This cast of characters follows a set of tropes found in adventure stories. There is The Hero, The Maiden, The Underling and The Overlord. But don't let that fool you into thinking this game is cliche! BAD END THEATER is one of the most creative games I have ever played. It, too, is delightfully queer, as well, with 3 out of the 4 main characters being canonically queer in some way. Such a shame that all of their endings will lead to tragedy, right?


SMILE FOR ME

TYPE: video game

WARNINGS: involuntary detainment, referenced child abuse

Smile For Me is a point-and-click puzzle/adventure game with horror elements. You play as Flower Kid, and your goal is to make all of the residents of The Habitat (a place where people learn to smile again) grin, before the ominous Big Event. This game has such a charming art style, and even more charming characters. Once again, it is filled with canonically queer characters, and is a good casual playing experience while still being beyond memorable.


CELESTE

TYPE: video game

WARNINGS: panic attacks

Celeste is a very challenging platforming game with a subversive take on mental illness. You follow Madeline as she struggles to fight her inner demons and climb Celeste Mountain. The game's pixel graphics are so gorgeous, and its music is equally so. I'm not exaggerating when I say that the first time I played this game, it changed my life.


MIDNIGHT MASS

TYPE: miniseries

WARNINGS: religious trauma, death (pet and human), gore, drug and alcohol use, vomiting, islamophobia

Midnight Mass, man... Midnight fuckin' Mass!!! What can you even say about a masterpiece like Midnight Mass... Well, it's a supernatural horror, for one, and was created by the genius Mike Flanagan. After the arrival of a charming yet mysterious young priest, a religious small town begins to experience both unimaginable miracles and horrors alike. The dialogue is beautiful, the themes and ideas it bring forth left me on the floor, and its critique of organized religion and the harm that it causes is scathing. I try not to use 'perfect', but this is damn near it. If you can stomach it, please check this out; especially if you're an ex-Christian or have religious trauma of any flavor. You won't regret it.


GOOD OMENS

TYPE: series

WARNINGS: childbirth, alcohol, crucifixion

Let's keep on the religious trauma train, actually! Good Omens is a fantasy/comedy following an angel and demon with an unlikely... Let's say, bond. The two of them have become attached to Earth, and they must now work together to stop the approaching Armageddon without Heaven or Hell finding out that they associate with the other. You've probably heard already of how the angel (Aziraphale) and demon (Crowley) are impossibly queercoded. (To be honest, I think that they're just flat-out canon; a LOT of the things they do quite literally have no platonic explanation. And I don't mean that in a tumblr shipper way, I mean it in a, "I am a human with eyes," way.) While the relationship between the two is very much the backbone of the series, there is also an aspect of faith deconstruction that lingers throughout. Again, THIS series is TRULY for the religious trauma gays.


THE OWL HOUSE

TYPE: series

WARNINGS: child abuse and neglect

I don't care how many times you've been recommended it. YOU WILL BE RECOMMENDED IT AGAIN. The Owl House is a fantasy cartoon series with horror elements, and, to be frank, an absolute fucking MASTERPIECE. It follows Luz, a bisexual neurodivergent teen with an interest in fantasy who struggles with bullying and fitting in, who accidentally ends up in a world of magic! It's not exactly what she'd hoped; it's a horrifying world with demons at every turn. But she eventually finds friends, a girlfriend, a family and a place she belongs in The Demon Realm, which she eventually learns she has to help protect. Please watch this show if you haven't. I know the first half of season one isn't exactly great, but I promise you it's the weakest of the entire show. The storytelling is absolutely mind-blowing for a Disney show. Not to mention the multiple canon queer characters! Please watch it. Please.


LUCA

TYPE: movie

WARNINGS: possible homophobia told in the form of metaphors

You've probably already heard about how Luca is a pretty obvious queer metaphor (which the creator didn't say was wrong, by the way, despite the popular misinformation stating otherwise), so I'll skip that. Instead, I'll tell you that Luca is a coming-of-age fantasy following a pair of sea monsters who have to disguise themselves as humans, and their desire to win a race so they can use the prize money to run away together. It's a low-stakes watch and a huge comfort movie.


THE LEGO BATMAN MOVIE

TYPE: movie

WARNINGS: n/a

Listen. This is the best Batman movie. I don't care. What more could you need?? We have the found family trope (with the explicit message 'friends are family'), we have an interesting method of queercoding in Joker and Batman's relationship, and the movie is also just HILARIOUS. It is not afraid to poke fun at Batman's character. It doesn't take itself too seriously, and it's just a fun watch! You'll like this if you also liked The LEGO Movie.


PROFESSOR LAYTON AND THE ETERNAL DIVA

TYPE: movie

WARNINGS: n/a

Widely considered to be the first video game movie of all time, I'd argue it to also be the best! This movie takes place entirely in the style of the Professor Layton cutscenes, which means it feels pulled straight out of the games. Like its game counterparts, it's a mystery movie; this time following Professor Hershel Layton and his assistant, Luke, as they learn that an opera preformance they went to was a cover for a high-stakes competition, where the winner recieves eternal life! You don't necessarily have to be familiar with the Layton game series to watch this movie, and it's even up for absolutely free on YouTube! It's such a good watch, with all of the puzzle-solving, excellent music and tear-jerking scenes that the game series is known for.


KNIVES OUT

TYPE: movie

WARNINGS: death

Knives Out is a crime drama. When a renowned novelist is found dead in his estate, a detective is enlisted to investigate the mystery, meeting the novelist's dysfunctional family along the way. I can't tell you much more, because it would spoil one of the movie's many twists, when it truly is best experienced blind. The twists and turns it takes are excellently done, and the ending is so beyond satisfying. If it sounds bland from the plot synopsis, please trust me: that's just the setup. It soon takes on a whole new direction. This movie had me stomping my feet and pumping my fists at every reveal, because everything came together so PERFECTLY! Knives Out is the only crime drama I have ever enjoyed; not even to mention enjoyed so thoroughly. In the words of the wise Penny Snapcube and Dollip Daze: "Watch Knives Out."

@Repth