Stars from ‘Love on the Spectrum’ hold discussion and meet and greet at JMS Screening Circle

Students gathered to learn about the cast members’ experience with autism and hear about their time on the show


Photo by Corinne Davidson

SDSU students eagerly pose with Subodh Garg and Dani Bowman from Love on the Spectrum.

by Gwenyth Hoebing, Staff Writer

Students gathered at the Tula Community Center last Thursday for a screening of Netflix’s hit show “Love on the Spectrum U.S.” which displayed an episode of the series followed by a panel discussion and meet and greet with stars of the show.

“Love on the Spectrum U.S” is a series that follows seven people on the autism spectrum as they navigate their way through the tricky world of dating, while also tackling common misconceptions about their daily life. 

Abbey Romeo, a star of the show who couldn’t make it to the event, sent in a personalized video saying hello to the San Diego State University students in attendance. In the video, Abbey expressed that her favorite part of being on the show was meeting her boyfriend David. 

Episode three of the Netflix show was shown before panel members and stars of the show Dani Bowman and Subodh Garg made their entrance, alongside Sandy Vielma, Bowman’s aunt, and Aarti Garg, Subodh Garg’s sister.

The panelists answered numerous questions about their experiences on the Netflix show, how they navigate relationships and personal careers and how they think media representation for people on the spectrum is changing for the better. 

Bowman shared how it felt to be on the show and gave advice to those who might be facing the challenging obstacle of dating while on the spectrum. 

“Showing my life on TV felt a little scary, especially because I was afraid to say or do something wrong, I was just being myself and I made mistakes just like everyone else, but remember we are all human,” Bowman said. “I would advise those who are on the autism spectrum that you don’t need to hide your autism, just be proud of who you are.” 

A snippet from a project created through Danimation, Bowman’s animation company that specializes in talent development for artists on the spectrum, was also shown during the panel discussion. Bowman said she has seen an increase of support and interactivity with her company over the last couple of years. 

Garg said that his main takeaway for succeeding in relationships is finding time management and continuing to put yourself out there by going to dating events. 

“It was amazing. I watched the show back when it came out, and it was so cool to see them here,” said Vivian Cody, a first year journalism student. “My brother has autism and so it’s always been something that I’ve dealt with, so it was really cool to see real representation of people on the spectrum.”

Following the discussion panel, attendees got the opportunity to meet and take pictures with the stars of the show.

Journalism Media Studies Marketing and Events Coordinator Faye Ogawa explained the importance of having events like this to give a voice to underrepresented groups. 

“I think it’s great to showcase people that aren’t represented in the media as often,” Ogawa said. “Having shows and movies that show underrepresented and marginalized communities are great to showcase them. I think it’s important to have these kinds of events on campus.”