Kit Connor and Joe Locke (‘Heartstopper’) on showing young queer people that ‘everything will be okay’ [Exclusive Video Interview]

“It’s a real honor to be able to make a show like ‘Heartstopper,'” says actor Kit Connor about the Netflix original series, which is based on the graphic novel series by Alice Oseman and follows the romance between a pair of teenage classmates. “To have a show like ‘Heartstopper’ kind of shows how far we’ve come as a community and as a society.” We talked with Connor and his co-star Joe Locke about their work on the show. Watch our exclusive video interview above.

Locke plays Charlie Spring, who was recently outed as gay and faces bullying at school, but Locke marvels that Charlie is still “just such a nice person … He cares about his friends and family” and his hardships haven’t taken away his innate goodness. Connor plays Nick, who’s popular, plays on the rugby team, and isn’t exactly sure what his sexuality is: “I think one of the best things about playing Nick is, he’s got so much going on in his head,” Connor explains, “and he’s just so desperate to not let anyone down,” so “it’s lovely to play him in that sense.”

Though there’s conflict on “Heartstopper,” as there’s bound to be on any show about lovestruck teenagers trying to figure themselves out, the series is ultimately marked by its optimism. “When it tackles problems … it does so with the light always at the end of the tunnel,” Locke observes. “You always know that it’s going to be okay at the end, which I think is so important, especially for younger queer people, especially in the turbulent societies that we live in, to know that everything will be okay.”

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