If I was a kid, I would be obsessing over The Owl House and making sure the VCR was set to record it every week. Thankfully it’s 2021 and my DVR auto-records every episode so this fun grown adult without kids can sit with a bowl of popcorn every week and squeal.
What’s It About?
The premise of the show is simple. A quirky, self-assured, girl named Luz steps through a magic portal and winds up in a new world – The Boiling Isles. She quickly befriends Eda, the Owl Lady (who lives in the Owl House), and the adorable little monster named King. While Luz has no magical powers, she figures out how to use spells to be a witch, goes to witch school, makes friends, and has adventures.
It sounds familiar, right? A lot of tween and YA fiction has that vibe. A kid who walks their own path finds out they’re special all along. Something we all wanted as queer kids. To be special, to be seen as special, and to find family. It’s basically queer kid central.
When we first meet Luz, she doesn’t seem to have anyone she’s really interested in. Early on in season one, there’s a hot guy, but that fizzles out for reasons (go watch!), and Luz befriends some actual witches. Some are nice, some are not, and one is incredibly complicated. That complication blossoms into more than ‘just’ friendship, which is why we’re here.
Who Are the Queers?
There are three obviously queer characters, and one questionably (until she declares herself at least).
- Luz, our protagonist, is a bouncy bisexual with a zest for life and who cannot be stopped. She likes guys, but in short order (and after sneaking into school), Luz meets a girl who sweeps her off her feet.
- Amity is incredibly complicated. Forced into being who she has to be by her parents (seriously, her mother dyes her hair green to match her siblings), Amity is cool, collected, powerful, and seemingly everything Luz is not.
- Raine is the head of the Bard Coven, and is non-binary. They’re not happy with the current state of rule around, and used to date the Owl Lady, Eda.
I know someone’s going to say “Well if Raine’s non-binary and used to date Eda, doesn’t that mean Eda’s queer too?” The answer is … probably, but maybe? We don’t actually know (yet) how Eda defines herself, but I have faith that Dana Terrace will absolutely let us know.
Star Crossed Fools
For season one, I mostly watched because it was cute and everyone said there was no heterosexual explanation for Amity and Luz. They had the classic “Enemies to friends” storyline, where Amity was upset about Luz being wacky and … well … Luz, and Luz was cheerfully confused about why Amity wouldn’t want to be friends. They liked the same books, after all! There’s a lot of cute looks, which yes are very much “there is no heterosexual explanation …”
What’s Grom? It’s like prom. Only not at all. Amity is selected Grom queen, which turns out to mean she has to fight a shape shifting fear demon. Clueless Luz pops up and offers to fight for her, resulting in a co-fight where the girls win and we find out that Amity wanted to ask Luz to the after dance.
That pretty much cemented this as not just a queer suggestion but a queer reality. Of course, the kids being 14, they mess everything up over and over. And over. The blushes between them increase, they help each other, they have arguments, but Amity’s older twin siblings are all for it, and absolutely help out Luz every time.
Hooty Hoo! Requited!
Finally in last week’s episode, though, the girls sorted out their stuff (with the help of Hooty the owl). They ask each other out and spend time studying:
And the best part about all of this is that it just is. No one makes a fuss that Raine’s non-binary, they just use the pronouns and move on. Eda doesn’t care that Luz likes a girl, she just wants to be sure Luz really does like Amity! And Amity’s annoying older siblings are, as I mentioned, totally for it.
Choices Will Be Made
Of course, the creeping doubt I have is that Luz wants to go home. She misses her mother after all. Will Amity go with her? Her mother is kind of a jerk, after all, and Luz’s mom hasn’t sorted out that Luz is even missing, so odds are they could get away with the whole hair and ear things. But.
This show actually dares to make things complicated and deep. Nothing is super easy, there are challenges and losses and tension. Eda’s cursed, there’s a doppelgänger of Luz running around Earth, and I don’t trust Amity’s mom as far as I can throw King.
Which means this falls under some of the best YA stories. The ones adults can sit with their popcorn and watch excitedly every Saturday. You should join me.