Heartstopper creator Alice Oseman on changing Nick Nelson's coming out story

Alive Oseman was speaking recently at the Edinburgh International TV Festival.


Words: Alastair James; pictures: Netflix

The creator of the Heartstopper world, Alice Oseman, has been explaining why the coming out story for lead character Nick Nelson (Kit Connor) differed slightly in the TV show from her original we-comic.

Heartstopper won the world over when it debuted on the streaming platform in April and has since gone on to be renewed for two more seasons as well as beginning to pick up awards, including the 'Best LGBTQ Show' at the Dorian TV Awards.

Speaking recently at the Edinburgh International TV Festival, Oseman explained why Nick's journey on screen had to be different from the comics.

"The comics are so low stakes," as reported by The Radio Times. "When problems arise in the story of the comics they’re solved almost immediately. And that is something that people like about the comics but it doesn’t work for TV because if there’s no drama, people will get bored."

She goes on to say that the "big changes" related to "adding more tension and elongating the character journeys."

Continuing she said, "Like for example Nick, who goes on this sexuality journey in Heartstopper – in the show it takes him longer to figure out who he is and feel comfortable with who he is, while in the comics he sort of figures it out quite quickly, and that’s really nice."

Despite these slight differences, Alice is still of the opinion that the show serves the characters in her comics well. Judging by how well the show has been received by both existing Heartstopper fans and new ones, no one is disagreeing.

The series has been a hit with both fans and critics, even gaining an extremely rare 100 percent approval rating on the review aggregator site, Rotten Tomatoes.

The Attitude September/October issue is out now.