Director Vivian Kleiman details the extraordinary emergence of five scrappy pioneering queer comic book cartoonists as they go from being featured in gay newspapers and bookstores to eventual worldwide fame. Spanning everything from the AIDS crisis, workplace discrimination, to the fight for equality, the five artists tackled the humor in queer lives in a changing world and the everyday pursuits of love, sex and community. Their work is funny, smart and profound, providing a unique, uncensored window into LGBTQ lives from the 1970s onward, beginning at a time in which there was no other genuine queer storytelling in popular culture. The artists include Jen Camper, Howard Cruse, Mary Wings, Rupert Kinnard (former Chicagoan and creator of the first Black queer comic book characters featured in the now defunct Outlines), and Alison Bechdel. Bechdel’s graphic novel about her closeted father and her budding lesbian sexuality led to her being chosen for a MacArthur Genius Grant and was the basis for the Tony award-winning musical FUN HOME – all lovingly detailed in Kleiman’s entertaining and thought-provoking historical documentary.
Available to stream in the U.S. only.
Gerber/Hart is a LGBTQ Library and Archives located in Rogers Park in Chicago. Founded in 1981, Gerber/Hart’s collections focus on the culture and history of LGBTQ peoples and additional marginalized sexual and gender minorities in Chicago and the Midwest. Open to all, Gerber/Hart serves these communities by collecting, preserving, and making accessible collection items of individuals, organizations, and businesses, as well as publicly distributed items. Additionally, Gerber/Hart provides programming and exhibitions related to items in its collections and on other topics in LGBTQ history and culture.