Her ex-wife Wendy Ross-Hogarth, and girlfriend Pam also represent lesbians on the show. Piper, Alex, Big Boo, Nicky, Soso, Poussey, Suzanne, and numerous side characters offer a range of portrayals lesbian and bisexual women on one show. The show also features transgender teen Cole who is played by trans actor Tom Phelan. The show also deals realistically with HIV. Gibson is completely unashamed of her sexuality, and unapologetically pursues casual relationships with men and women. Local lesbian police constable, Danielle Ferrington, helps solve the case.
Such a definition, however, dismisses the formal variety of twentieth-century gay culture, and fails to take account of the specific contradictions and complications produced by the double movement of that culture since the beginning of the century. One direction of movement has been towards the elaboration of an autonomous subculture with its own sites and styles; the second, occurring simultaneously, has been towards the integration often superficial and always troubled of gay images, languages and individuals into the culture as a whole. Between these two ideals of autonomy and integration lies a spectrum of cultural operations devised by those who have supported, challenged, appropriated and exploited the existing order. The twentieth century has been a period of extraordinarily rapid social and cultural change for gay people, but within all this diversity and change one factor has remained until recently constant. By the turn of the nineteenth century, at the end of a year period in which both the subculture and its collisions with the world of culture had produced increasingly confident gay styles, the distinctive features of the gay theatre of our own century had been set. This formative period was not, however, characterized by a collective sense of gay culture.