When it comes to the portrayal of GBLT people, the Anita Blake series is a classic warning that quantity is never a substitution for quality and that mere number of portrayals does not make a book, TV series or film friendly to GBLT people. We’ve seen this in True Blood as well, where, again, sheer number of portrayals doesn’t change the very large problems with those portrayals.
I can understand the reaction. Most books and series simply don’t have any GBL inclusion at all. And when they do it’s usually one or two characters, in minor roles (usually as best friends and support staff - barely even side kicks). We have started praising even the tiniest inclusion - it’s depressing when we see even progressive blogs analysing media, praising Teen Wolf for its single bit-token gay character, while criticising it for its portrayals of other, more numerous, minorities. So when we see a series that has several GBL characters it is extremely rare and it is tempting to praise it - especially when tiny, virtually characterless tokens are seemingly due fawning.
But quality matters. A book with a terrible, trope laden stereotypes is bad, problematic and prejudiced. The mere fact you have a hundred of them rather than just one doesn’t makes these terrible, trope laden stereotypes ok. And this is abundantly clear in the Anita Blake series.
The easiest place to begin is to look at some of the villains of the Anita Blake series, because I think I spot a pattern:
Did you catch the pattern? When you have more GBL rapists in a series than you can count on the fingers of one hand? There’s a problem.