6 LGBTQ AAPIS That We Love

From Internet celebs, and comedy legends to TV icons. Here are 6 queer AAPI pioneers and stars that have gifted the entertainment world with their stories and talent and represent a more inclusive and diverse future.

George Takei

A living icon. George Takei may be known to millions for his role as Hikaru Sulu from the classic TV series Star Trek, but since coming out as gay in 2005, the actor, director, author, and activist, has become one of the country’s leading figures in the fight for social justice. In 2014, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation honored him with the GLAAD Vito Russo Award, presented to an openly LGBT artist who has made a significant difference in promoting equality for the LGBT community.

Margaret Cho
She’s an All-American girl, alright. The Grammy and Emmy Award-nominated stand-up comedian, actress, and singer-songwriter has cemented her place as one of the major LGBTQ figures in entertainment. If you want a primer on her extraordinary career as a comedian where she shares openly about her experience as a bisexual woman, then start with “I’m the One That I Want” (2000), and follow that up with her amazing and hilarious specials: “Notorious C.H.O.” (2001) and “Assassin” (2005). You can also catch her as part of the iconic ensemble of Fire Island, the critically acclaimed romantic comedy starring Joel Kim Booster, streaming currently on Hulu.
Joel Kim Booster

And speaking of Fire Island, you cannot make a list of notable LGBTQ AAPIs without mentioning the film’s lead actor and writer, Joel Kim Booster. The movie is filled with Joel’s observations about his own identity as a gay Asian man, and his stand-up routine showcases his unique perspective as a Korean American adopted by white evangelical parents. If you want a peak into his creative mind, don’t miss his amazing special Psychosexual, currently streaming on Netflix.

Bretman Rock

It’s Bretman’s world! The Filipino-American influencer started his journey towards stardom as a teen creating viral content on YouTube and he is currently of the most influential internet stars. Rock made history by becoming the first openly gay man to appear on the cover of Playboy, and is the star of his own reality show on MTV, and he achieved all of this before turning 24 years old.  

Bowen Yang

Bowen is one of the brightest stars in the current comedy landscape. The Australian-born American actor, comedian, and podcaster made history when he became Saturday Night Live’s first Chinese-American and the third openly gay male cast member. Besides his multiple Emmy nominations, Yang was among TIME’s 100 Most Influential People and made the cover of Entertainment Weekly and Variety’s Power of Pride list. 

Eugene Yang

No list can be complete without the Internet’s favorite Try Guy, Eugene Yang. The American filmmaker, actor, producer, author, director, activist, and viral celeb, is probably best known for being one-fourth of the influential YouTube group The Try Guys. Yang has used his notoriety and stratospheric recognition to shine a light on various human rights and LGBTQ+ advocacy charities such as The Trevor Project.