Pride Month: Webtoons

For Pride Month, Matt & Simon give their picks for best LGBTQIA+ centered Webtoons.

Webtoons has always been a hub for a lot of LGBTQIA+ content and during Pride month, I thought it especially important to highlight some of these engaging series. These picks are just some of our recommendations and not an ultimate representation of everyone under the LGBTQIA+ community. The beautiful thing about Webtoons is being able to find content you enjoy and sharing it with others, so if you think there’s something we’ve missed, comment below and share your favorite LGBTQIA+ Webtoon picks.

Castle Swimmer
Author: Wendy Lian Martin
Genre: Fantasy
Number of Episodes: 98
Current Status: Ongoing; Updates on Sundays
Submitted By: Matt

A similar prophecy was handed down to multiple different kingdoms throughout the sea that foretold a mysterious being called The Beacon, who would come and save them. Kappa has spent his life tied to these prophecies going from kingdom to kingdom selflessly resolving their woes. One day, a prophecy brings Kappa to The Castle of Sharks, who have been cursed who seek The Beacon and rid them of it. The prophecy connects Kappa to the Castle’s prince, Siren, and the two bond with each other as people rather than as two halves of an inescapable prophecy. 

Castle Swimmer is a beautiful story telling the tale of two boys fighting against their own destinies. The world building within the story is compelling and as you begin to read, you will learn how deep the lore goes. It’s fun to learn what type of undersea creature each of the merfolk are based off of. 

One of the things I love about this story is its view on sexuality. Siren is acknowledged as being interested in men and is stated as just a normal everyday fact. You don’t need a coming out moment to have a good LGBTQIA+ story. As a Webtoons Original, the story updates weekly on Sundays allowing you to keep up with the tale of Kappa and Siren regularly.

Author: Alice Oseman
Genre: Romance
Number of Episodes: 162
Current Status: Ongoing
Submitted By: Matt

Charlie Spring is a student who goes to a British all-boys school. He was frequently bullied after coming out as gay. Charlie soon finds himself an unexpected friend on the school’s rugby team, Nick Nelson. Their friendship blooms while they begin to understand each other and themselves. 

Heartstopper is such a captivating story. The character’s are easy to get to know and feel very real. The story touches on a lot of sensitive subjects like bullying and mental illness while exploring the minds of high school students. Surprisingly, it reads as a light-hearted story. Heartstopper is so binge-worthy, you’ll start the first episode and next thing you know, you’ve read the whole series start to finish and you’ll be wanting to read it again.

The story is also very inclusive covering many aspects of the LGBTQIA+ community. It’s nice to read a story and see so many people being represented in it. Heartstopper was also recently picked up by Netflix. Alice Oseman also wrote the screenplay for the series as well. If you enjoy this webtoon, then definitely keep an eye out for the Netflix series when it is released during 2022!

Our Walk Home
Author: furanc0
Genre: Slice of Life
Number of Episodes: 29
Current Status: Ongoing
Submitted By: Matt

Akihiko Shiraishi is the popular kid at high school, but he fights everyday to keep up the charade as long as he can. In reality, when he was in middle school he had no presence at all. Thanks to a new haircut, he’s been placed up on a pedestal as the school’s idol. One day, Akihiko learns that the rival high school has a student that has also been placed on a similar pedestal. The rumors paint this student as a scary person, but do the two have much more in common than they think?

The art for this series is definitely one of my favorites. The colors feel warm and look so soft. It truly is eye-catching. Reading through one of Akihiko’s mental breakdowns is not only humorous, but also painfully relatable at the same time. 

As a Webtoons Canvas series, it doesn’t have a set updating schedule and currently hasn’t had an episode in a few months. According to the author’s Twitter, they are working hard on the next couple chapters and I can’t wait to read more of this story.

Always Raining Here
Author: Hazel and Bell
Genre: Slice of Life
Number of Episodes: 35
Current Status: Completed
Submitted By: Matt

Carter Brooks is a seventeen year old gay guy living a boringly, average suburban life. His high school does not have a lot of other gay students, meaning his dating pool is slim to nothing. Carter discovers one of his schoolmates at a bookstore reading a gay magazine and tries to set up a “mutually beneficial deal” with him. The student’s name is Adrian and he is less than amused by Carter’s proposition. Carter is persistent and Adrian is exhausted at his tactless attempts. 

This series did not originally start on Webtoons, but had recently been uploaded to it after its completion. Always Raining Here predated Webtoon’s global launch by three years starting in 2011 and finished in 2016. Being able to see the style of art changing between the chapters is such a beautiful thing to me. It’s always great to see someone grow as an artist.

The story of Carter and Adrian is heartwarming and filled with a lot of good feelings. While it has been quite awhile since reading this particular webcomic, it is definitely one of the first ones I recommend when trying to introduce people to the world of webtoons.

Flourishing Flowers
Author: RoseNose
Genre: Romance
Number of Episodes: 79
Current Status: Ongoing; Updates Weekly
Submitted By: Matt

Milo and his sister, Hanna were walking home one day when they passed by a flower shop. Hanna insists on stopping to look at the flowers and they meet the owner of the shop, Ben. The two begin to frequently stop by the flower shop and eventually they get to know Ben much better. After getting to know Ben, Milo realizes that there might be more to his feelings about Ben than just a friendship.

Reading Flourishing Flowers feels like reading a really well-done manga. The art is done in black and white and uses screen tones for shading which creates that distinct manga feeling. Also, Milo’s friends are supportive when he comes out to them and we love nothing more than friends who support the person you are.

Not So Shoujo Love Story
Author: Curryuku
Genre: Comedy
Number of Episodes: 43
Current Status: Ongoing; Updates Weekly
Submission By: Simon

This Webtoon by Curryuku follows a girl named Rei who’s a huge fan of shōjo manga. While she has her eyes on the most popular boy in school, Hansum, a girl named Hanna is interested in Rei… and maybe, with time and some effort on Hanna’s part, Rei will grow to reciprocate Hanna’s feelings. A consistently funny romance packed with absurdity and shōjo references, Not So Shoujo Love Story’s characters may have exaggerated traits, but Curryuku still manages to make their feelings and conflicts feel genuine. Seeing Rei slowly grow to accept and rely on Hanna is really sweet and their relationship is one of my favourites in current webcomics. Plus, this series is packed full of running gags, such as Hansum continually making references to the fact that he may be an alien. It’s a ton of fun.

There are so many other LGBTQIA+ Webtoons out there and it’d be impossible to cover them all, but there is a story out there for everyone. Considering it is Pride Month, I challenge you all to read through some LGBTQIA+ stories and support the authors’ work in creating a more inclusive world through the work of their webcomics!

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