08/25/2014 12:19 pm ET Updated Feb 02, 2016

How 'My So-Called Life' Helped Me Discover My Own Queer Identity

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The TV landscape for LGBTQ characters has shifted dramatically since the groundbreaking show first aired 20 years ago

When I was 8, my favorite thing to do after school would be to visit the set of My So-Called Life. My mom, who created the show, had to be there all the time, so I’d visit her on days when a babysitter could drive me or when my dad was shooting scenes as Angela’s grandfather. I’d play behind the scenery, do my homework in the unused fake school hallway, and plunder the craft service snack table. I loved reading the scripts and watching rough cuts of the episodes. A lot of what I saw went over my head, but I could totally identify with Angela’s intense crush on Jordan Catalano. I was already boy crazy, pining after classmates, camp counselors, my friend’s older brother, and the bowl-cutted hunks of Tiger Beat.

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