Series Review: Fellow Travelers

Fellow Travelers is a 2023 historical romance series that is based on the 2008 book by Thomas Mallon of the same name. Fellow Travelers is available with a subscription to Paramount+ that specifically includes Showtime access. As this series includes profanity, sexual content, homophobic language, moments of suicidal ideation, and depictions of smoking, drug and alcohol use, it is recommended for viewers 18 years of age and older. This eight-part show follows the initial meeting between Hawk Fuller (Matt Bomer) and Tim Laughlin (Jonathan Bailey), two State Department workers who are forced to conceal their romantic relationship amid the government’s effort to uncover and to prosecute Communists as well as those suspected of homosexuality in the 1950s.

This, however, is only the beginning of the lover’s story as the series continuously moves back and forth between the ‘50s, the political tension during the ‘60s, and the death of Harvey Milk in the ‘70s before concluding with the AIDS epidemic of the ‘80s. Through the changes in these decades, viewers are able to grasp the lasting effects of Hawk and Tim’s relationship that are, for purposes of the show, rooted in major LGBTQ+ historical events.

Apart from the main love story, Fellow Travelers includes the issues of racism, internal homophobia, the struggle of masculinity for some gay men, and religious convictions being at odds with LGBTQ+ identities. The draw of this series is Matt Bomer and Jonathan Bailey’s unwavering chemistry that at different stages can attract but also bring about a catharsis from their tenderness with one another. Fellow Travelers is significant in the way it provides examples of leading characters who learn to embrace their queerness unapologetically. If you are questioning your identity, would like to come out, or are in need of local LGBTQ+ resources, please contact the National LGBT Help Center through the support services listed below.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) National Hotline: 1-888-843-4564

LGBT National Coming Out Support Hotline: 1-888-688-5428 (1-888-OUT-LGBT)

LGBT National Youth Talkline: 1-800-246-7743 (1-800-246-PRIDE)

LGBT National Senior Hotline: 1-888-234-7243

You can also reach out online at