Queering Teen Television: Sugar Rush, Seriality and Desire

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


When queer girls appear in popular film and television, queerness is often characterised as a transient phase entered into during a liminal period of adolescence. In this phase, queer desire, sex and/or romance is framed as acceptable practice for heterosexual desire, sex and/or romance as a form of teenage rebellion. One program that does move beyond such limited characterisation is UK series Sugar Rush (2005-2006). A teen-comedy about a “fifteen-year-old virgin” named Kim (Olivia Hallinan) who is “sexually obsessed” with her straight best friend, Sugar (Lenora Crichlow), Sugar Rush follows Kim’s attempts to deal with her newfound desires as she adjusts to living in a new city with her eccentric family. This chapter argues that Sugar Rush serialises a traditionally ‘closed’ narrative, drawing out and extending the coming out narrative and ultimately moving beyond it, thus ‘opening’ the possibility for more nuanced representations of queer teenagers.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTelevising Queer Women
Subtitle of host publicationA Reader
EditorsRebecca Beirne
Place of PublicationUnited States
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)978-0-230-60080-5, 978-0-230-34098-5
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • television
  • lesbian
  • gender studies
  • teen television
  • youth media
  • television seriality

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