In 2016-2017 on NBC, there were only 3 lesbian and bisexual female characters. The network’s rate of representation has been declining for 4 seasons, with less characters introduced each season, and a large percentage of characters killed off. This year marked the lowest number of characters on NBC since 2010-2011, and the lowest number of new characters since 2011-2012.
Number of characters on NBC over the past 8 seasons:
The only character who was still alive and expected to return at the end of the 2015-2016 season on NBC, recurring character Mr Kaplan, had an episode in which her sexuality was finally confirmed via flashbacks – by showing the death of a former love interest. Prior to this, the only indication that she was not straight was a single comment made in 2014. Mr Kaplan was killed off as well in the season finale.
On Timeless, regular character Denise is married to a woman – again, the relationship was only mentioned in a single episode, and there were no other references to Denise’s sexuality.
In other words, in a full year of programming, with 23 scripted TV shows, the screen time dedicated to showing an on-screen relationship between two women was limited to minutes of flashback in a single episode, which ended in death.
Historically, lesbian or bisexual characters on NBC are very rarely depicted in relationship arcs that are explicit, developed on screen, and last more than 3 episodes. When it does happen, those relationships are often with male characters.
To date, there have been 0 f/f relationships between two regular characters.
Relationships on NBC for bisexual* characters
*including the 3 characters whose sexualities were left ambiguous even though they were implied bisexual.