I really liked how the writers and designers dealt with gay characters in this game. First of all, they included them. Second, there was no stereotyping, only logical, realistic depiction. Third, they were treated with the same potential for tragedy and compassion as the other relationships in the game, neither made grandiose or wacky.
I interpret there to be four major gay characters, with the latter two less directly implied. Bill and his partner (whose name I forgot...) are the first, with Ellie's stealing Bill's magazine making the association obvious. And Marlene and Ellie's mom are, I think, the second. My reading of Marlene's letter to Anna, and Anna's letter to Marlene, has a tone of affection and care that felt more romantic than merely platonic. Where the semen that led to Ellie came from is unclear.
I like that the stories of these characters were as interesting and revealing as the other relationships in the game, while they still retained a certain hidden quality that unfortunately exists in a world doused with homophobia. I wonder if that was necessary, though. Is Bill not saying "my boyfriend" or Marlene not being explicit about Anna a choice they made out of security, or a choice to remain in the closet in front of Joel? In an apocalyptic situation, perhaps the secrets we hold now would become even more important as we look to build societies without endangering ourselves.
Mostly, I want to applaud ND for choosing to include major characters of color and various sexual orientations. That's the real world, dog, and it is the right choice. Still would have liked to play as anyone other than a grizzled old Texan white dude. But I do appreciate the care behind their menagerie of humanity in the game.