Nelsan Ellis Nelsan Ellis

Television has become more gay-friendly, led by True Blood, which boasts the most gay characters on a series, according to GLAAD's 2010 Where We Are On TV report.

MTV, CW top GLAAD's gay-friendly programming index; CBS fails again

The HBO vampire smash was named the most inclusive program for featuring six regular and recurring lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered characters. HBO also leads cable networks with 10 LGBT characters, bumping the overall cable total to 35 characters from the 2009 count of 25. Cable networks had been suffering a two-year decline until this year's turnaround, the study said.Across broadcast television, 23 LGBT characters account for 3.9 percent of 587 characters in 84 scripted series in the current 2010-11 season — up 3 percent from last year, the study said.

Glee honored at GLAAD Awards

"The increase in lesbian, gay, and bisexual characters on primetime television not only reflects the shift in American culture towards greater awareness and understanding of our community, but also a new industry standard that a growing number of creators and networks are adopting," GLAAD President Jarrett Barrios said. "The recent critical and commercial success of shows like Modern Family

and Glee clearly indicate that mainstream audiences embrace gay characters and want to see well-crafted stories about our lives."ABC continues to lead broadcast networks with 11 LGBT characters on such shows as Modern Family and Brothers & Sisters. Fox placed second with five characters, followed by the CW and NBC with three each. NBC was the only network to decline from 2009, but CBS finished last again with one character.

CBS president: Network adding more gay characters to its shows

However, as GLAAD noted, the network has said it will introduce more LGBT characters on its series this year. The L Word's Dallas Roberts is already set to play Alicia's gay brother on The Good Wife.

The Good Wife casts role that "immediately impacts" Alicia, producer says

Following HBO, ABC Family and Showtime tied for second on the cable list with seven LGBT characters each. Syfy (four), and TNT, FX, Starz and Teen Nick (three each) round out the list.