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‘Heartstopper’ Is a TV Love Story With the Soul of a Comic

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Nick, 16, and Charlie, 15, sit side by side on the couch, watching a movie. Charlie has fallen asleep, arm outstretched, palm facing upward.

Nick (Kit Connor) gazes at a sleeping Charlie (Joe Locke) — first with tenderness, then with trepidation. His eyes dart down to Charlie’s hand and the tension is palpable.

When he reaches out and lets his hand hover above Charlie’s, sparks fly, in a literal sense, onscreen. Tiny animated stars and lightning bolts burst with the quiet sound of fireworks.

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