The fifth and final season of Netflix and DreamWorks' She-Ra and the Princesses of Power debuts Friday and there are a lot of mixed feelings. According to Linda Meleh at Forbes, the season is "incredibly satisfying … but its also difficult to say goodbye to a show that has made such an impact in the short time it's been on the air." When the coming-of-age adventure centered on a princess named Adora who transforms into a giant warrior debuted in November 2018, Vox called it "a huge step for LGBTQ representation on TV." The original 1980s animated series had featured skinny, white princesses. But the reboot, from an all-female writing team, has characters in all sizes and skin colors (there's also a non-binary character) and some "are shown to be attracted, romantically and platonically, to the same gender, or not just one gender."
"I know I'm not the only one that my first ever crush on a female character was Velma from Scooby Doo," showrunner Noelle Stevenson tells NPR. "I think it's important to know that this is an OK way to be. You don't have to hide." She grew up loving Star Wars and The Lord of the Rings but "never quite saw myself reflected in them." Viewers can certainly see themselves in She-Ra. "I didn't know before that I could act this way—that I could love this way, that I could dress this way—and have a loving family and friends," journalist Mey Rude tells NPR. "Shows like She-Ra show you that you can be." And it finishes "with more heart than ever," writes Shannon Miller at the AV Club. "Of all the final notes that She-Ra leaves behind, the most resonant is perhaps that nothing trumps the collective power of friendship, love, and solid storytelling." (Read more TV shows stories.)