It has been over two decades since Queer as Folk hit TV screens. Originally meant to be called Queer as Fuck, the title was later changed to become more acceptable for general audiences. Pushing the envelope of gay representation on the screen with hot topics, graphic sex, hot boys, and a stellar soundtrack have all become mainstays for the franchise. This Pride, we go back to Babylon as Peacock premieres a Queer as Folk that embraces a new generation of racially diversified, inclusive, and gender-free newbies.
Even in the last decade, so much has changed for representation of the LGBTQ+ community in media, a direct opposite of what is happening around the nation as conservatives look to silence our youth and take back our equal rights. Based on Russell T. Davie’s British version of the show, it’s back with even more colors of the rainbow!
STEPHEN DUNN (HE/HIM) CREATOR/WRITER/PRODUCER/DIRECTOR
The stars aligned for this new iteration to come together. QAF reboot creator, writer, executive producer, and director Stephen Dunn, inspired by TV shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and films like The Piano as a youth, had been working on a specific concept for the show, centering on a community coming together after tragedy.
His first experience with Queer as Folk was watching the series in his basement with the volume turned down low for fear of someone walking in. What started as a lonely experience turned into his first exposure to queerness and his sexual awakening. He felt part of a community. When he found out the rights had reverted to Davies, he immediately made a trip to Manchester to pitch his idea. In addition to QAF, Davies is also responsible for last year’s It’s A Sin, a powerful but much less cheerful look at queer life. He immediately took to Stephen’s vision.
Dunn: (Davies) really responded to it and felt this was the way to expand this specific avenue, to expand on the legacy of the show and tell a new story for this generation of queer folks. Russell’s been like a godfather – he weighed in on scripts and the edits, and his DNA is all over it. There are several winks and nods and references to the British series, even the design of the Babylon logo. I am blown away with his work, he continues to create such relevant and moving groundbreaking stuff, whether it’s in the queer space or not. I’m just enamored by him and so grateful that he trusted me and all of us to create this new chapter.
This reboot puts the central group of characters in the hotbed of diversity and debauchery that is New Orleans. Reflecting what our community actually looks like, there are more shades of skin this time around, gender identities abound, and the disabled members of our community get a voice. According to Dunn, there could only be one choice on where to set this story.
Dunn: There’s nowhere else. I wanted to make a new Queer as Folk that was distinct and came from a specific culture that was like punk, irreverent and rebellious. I was really close with (Drag Race’s) Chi Chi Devayne and we would often go to New Orleans together. I started spending a lot of time there and I just got embedded and deep into the drag scene and the queer scene. It’s so unlike anywhere in the entire world with so many stories from within the community that are just begging to be told. We’ve seen New York and San Francisco and LA, there’s a lot of stuff already out there. With the legacy of this show, I wanted to use it as an opportunity to shed light on a specific community that cannot be replicated and that needs to be seen.
Die-hard fans of both the American and British series will recognize some of the situations and energies of the characters complete with a woke mom, the young boy trying to find his way, newbie parents trying to get used to adulting, and the successful business gay juggling career and party life. But whereas the original series meant to put out a fantasy version of the community, prototypes of gay men, this series presents fully fleshed out characters, with a bit more grit and complexity. The actors that Stephen put together are as diverse as the characters they play, each with a different journey into the world of entertainment, differing levels of experience, and a connection with the LGBTQ community that is uniquely theirs. The show’s cast main cast includes Johnny Sibilly, Jesse James Keitel, Devin Way, CG, Fin Argus, and Ryan O’Connell. These relatively fresh faces are joined by guest star veterans Kim Cattrall, Juliette Lewis, and Ed Begley, Jr. Not only is the series bolstered by a group of talented artists, but the creative team, including the writers, also represents our community. This is not a show that is just pandering to Hollywood’s call for more LGBTQ storytelling. It is truly for and by the community.
Dunn: I wanted to find people who really brought the characters to life or who would surprise me in ways that I maybe didn’t expect. Casting the show, in general, is just like the most fun ever. I have to say to all casting directors, there is an incredible pool of actors out there. When you’re casting a big ensemble like this, you’re looking for different vibes that work together and create a messy family. I think that’s what is so exciting about our cast, they’re all so different. Sit down with any of them and their energies are so all over the place; sitting in a room with them together, there is nothing funnier than seeing them all interact because they’re just so different. So that’s something I was really looking for.
And I was able to hire a writer’s room of really all queer writers. There was this one moment when our writing assistant, Alyssa, came out to us as straight. It was a massive realization. This is the first time, for a lot of us, when our writer’s room is really diverse, a direct reflection of the characters in the show. And that was really important to me as I was sculpting who’s in it, how are we going to tell these stories with authenticity? We have to be fearless in the approach to writing this show and the only way to do that is to be in collaboration with other people who have lived these kinds of experiences. I didn’t realize the freedom that came from that. And it’s the same with being on set and being with this cast. I didn’t realize how starved I was for those kinds of spaces in my work environment. It just allowed us to tell even more authentic stories.
JESSE JAMES KEITEL (SHE/HER) as RUTHIE:
The first person that Dunn cast was Jesse James Keitel, playing a trans teacher and a new mother trying to balance parenthood with the allure of the nightlife around her. Keitel made headlines playing the first non-binary character on TV Land in Younger and for being the first non-binary actor to play a non-binary series regular on primetime television for her role in ABC’s Big Sky. Today, she identifies as trans, highlighting the evolution of identity that never stops. We no longer feel the pressure to keep ourselves affixed to a label.
Keitel: People have to come out a thousand times in a thousand different ways before they really know who they are. Non-binary was a lovely part of my journey that no longer serves me. I think non-binary is a great way for people to give themselves permission to explore. You don’t have to be a man, you don’t have to be a woman. There are no rules. You can just do what you want to do. That was something I fell back on in moments of my own dysphoria or feeling like the world limited my transition options. It gave me a place to feel safe within myself.
Keitel’s Ruthie is a spitfire. Keitel’s own journey and candid chat about the LGBTQ community and beyond makes her the perfect choice. Even with the opportunity to tell Ruthie’s story, she knows our community still has a way to go.
Keitel: There is a lot of transphobia and homophobia within the community and that permeates into non-binary. Some of the most transphobic people I’ve met have been gay men. But also, Ruthie has a line in the show that says she’s a woman of “fag experience” and that feels so true. We’re a big, broad community of people, all who have different bodies and different romantic inclinations. And I think there are some people who certainly reject parts of the community and some people who lift them up.
While some actors still have trepidation about coming out as part of the LGBTQ+ community, Jesse did not shy away. She is the new generation of actor and a very necessary addition to the QAF world.
Keitel: Life before being myself was limiting. Embracing myself is what gave me a career, embracing myself is what gave me confidence, embracing myself and who I am at my core made me confident and unapologetically free. I think the original versions of the show gave voice to people who weren’t being seen on television and it was groundbreaking, and it completely changed the television landscape. Our iteration of the show has an opportunity to do that again, but for a 2022 audience. We have different expectations of queer characters, now we have different expectations of queer people in the world and in the media. It’s a really rich opportunity to tell stories like my character’s on the show and some really cool stuff that never would’ve made it to television without previous versions of the show.
Keitel has proudly stated that the show is explicitly queer. With all that the conservative side is doing to silence our community, shouldn’t we be building bridges?
Keitel: That’s not our job. We are here, living our lives, being authentic, and having fun. Existing is not antagonistic. We are not the ones out there making laws and doing hate crimes, etc. to hurt our community. We are just out there trying to love and live and dance and have jobs and careers and hopes and dreams, you know? Why can’t we be unapologetically queer and unapologetically ourselves when so many people in the world are systemically trying to tear us down?
CG (THEY/THEM) as SHAR (THEY/THEM):
Playing Jesse’s partner is newcomer CG, a New Orleans native and non-binary actor, playing Shar, the voice of responsibility for the couple. Getting into the entertainment industry was inspired by their own family, not only was their grandmother a character unto herself, but their cousin’s success on TV in shows like Fresh Prince and X-Files showed CG that they, too, could shine. It wasn’t until recently that coming out at as non-binary was even a thought.
CG: I did a pilot called Acts of Crime before this came along. At that time, I was just doing mad work on myself and taking into account all the different kinds of presentations that I could go about with myself in the realm of TV and Hollywood. I’ve always been me to me, but the application of that, the action of being me on the outside, is different. I thought I was going to be doing theater gigs, but then COVID happened. However, film and TV were still viable. So, I had to switch gears and change the mindset of what that meant as far as the eyes on this person. And it’s been a tornado of a ride to come to that moment of knowing within myself, nothing else matters as long as you’re grounded. Not until recently have I found that footing.
CG had not watched QAF until getting into the audition process. Twenty years ago, certain terms and identities were not considered main characters in the telling of LGBTQ stories. Now, with this show’s mission of inclusivity, it has new relevance in expanding the scope of what we consider our community.
CG: I know that QAF was groundbreaking at that time for that audience. But as I was watching it, I had this feeling that it wasn’t me. It was very pointed to the white, gay CIS dudes and the lesbian couple. I didn’t see myself.
Now representing the non-binary community in their character Shar as well as on a personal level, what does it mean to CG to define non-binary, not the standard definition, but the definition for them? And how did it help them create their character?
CG: My heart’s beating fast because no one’s ever really asked that question. You know, they just assume non-binary oh, okay. This person’s non-binary so that must be what that means. But non-binary is just a whole spectrum of wholeness. It’s a lot to come to terms with when you live in a world where the body is the first thing you see.
I kind of just took Shar by the hands, or Shar just took me by the hand, being this grounded adult character in the midst of all of these people who are also adults, but Shar being this kind of anchor. They’ve been in this relationship with Ruth, they’re starting a family – so you have to be as sure as you can be. Even though it seems like a very minute place to start, it’s where I had to start with Shar. If they’re going to be a strong post, they have to exude sureness.
The scenes CG and Jesse share are touching, sexy, and at times, heartbreaking. They do not shy away from the camera either physically or emotionally.
CG: I remember having a conversation with Jesse early on in the process. We were talking about how being in a space with so many queers is new, and how comfortable it was, and how odd that comfortability was. She just said, “You are allowed to be comfortable.” And those words were all I needed to hear. And I thank her for that deeply.
JOHNNY SIBILLY (HE/HIM) as NOAH (HE/HIM)
Johnny Sibilly plays Noah, a lawyer whose party life and grief are in constant battle with his career. Johnny has enjoyed a recent string of success from his appearances on Pose and Hacks following the popularity of his viral social media videos with skits that were often related to his Latin culture. His videos as his alter ego Julissa are side-splitting. Being interested in acting from an early age, he was constantly reminded of the type of roles that were possible. Fast forward to being a lead as a double minority in a show where being a minority was just the opposite.
Sibilly: I grew up mostly in Miami, Florida, so a lot of the representation I saw on TV wasn’t really from the mainstream, it was more so from telenovelas and the things like that. But then I remember also seeing shows on UPN like The Parkers and Martin, Black-centered shows that were the closest thing to what my family looked like, acted like, and seemed like. So there never was a show that was exactly like what I was growing up around. There wasn’t really space, but I knew for a fact that if I wanted to, I could create space, especially watching people like John Leguizamo break into it and create a name for himself. There is always a possibility, you just have to forge your own path.
Even when I started my acting career, a lot of the auditions that I went on were “hot gardener” or “sexy UPS man” and I knew I was so much more, especially growing up watching Martin Lawrence, Eddie Murphy, and John Leguizamo. So, I started creating my own content online, wearing wigs and doing these characters who really allowed me to fill that space, but also continued to audition for roles that were available at the moment.
Even when called in for the hunky roles or being what a casting person might designate as being “straight passable,” he never hid his sexuality.
Sibilly: My mom always used to say, with her knowledge of the industry, that you don’t want to get pigeonholed as “the gay actor.” I would see stories like Rupert Everett and actors who came out and all of a sudden, their worlds changed. But for me, I always felt like I had no choice but to live my authenticity. I think because of that choice, doors have opened for me. There was no question about hiding my sexuality or being anyone other than Johnny Sibilly.
Being a part of the reboot is a testament to Johnny’s determination and hustle, and whose experience with early Queer as Folk mirrors creator Stephen Dunn’s. He had to be in this show.
Sibilly: Queer as Folk was the show that you wanted to watch, but couldn’t watch. I even get goosebumps thinking about being a kid, secretly watching QAF with finger on the remote, ready to flip back to the Disney channel. Anything for people not to know I was trying to understand what I was feeling, who I was through the guise of these characters that Russell T Davies had created, and then again with the American reboot. Queer as Folk has always been part of my own existence and upbringing. When I found out there were rumblings of a reboot, I emailed my agents immediately. Anytime I want to do something, I tell my team with certainty, “I need to be a part of it.” It was the same thing with Pose. I don’t care how, what character, but I need to be in this world. I remember walking down Fairfax in LA when I found out I got it and just screaming at the top of my lungs. It felt like such a weight lifted off my shoulder and I was able to step into the next level of my career. Also, it was a full-circle moment of queerness knowing that I would be part of the next chapter of this incredible franchise.
After reading the script for the first time and listening to the music choices that creator Dunn had inserted in the notes, Johnny burst into tears. Not only was he fulfilling a personal dream, but he was now a fully-fledged series regular. His character Noah is not without its challenges; his personal demons often bring him to dark places.
Sibilly: I am so very similar to Noah. The ways in which he operates, through his emotional being, is very much the way I approach things. We have very big hearts – we’re very similar in that regard, and very ambitious as well. There is some internal work I have done over the couple of years that Noah probably could use. It’s interesting to play a character who is flawed in those ways. With the struggles I’ve personally been through, I understand how my character Noah feels. As an actor, it’s a wonderful thing to have in your toolbox. It’s so exciting to play a character that is multi-dimensional, especially a Latinx character who is more than just the eye candy or the boyfriend. It really opens him up to be a fully realized character.
It wouldn’t be Queer as Folk without a little, or a lot of, sex. Though Johnny has posted slightly thirsty traps on his social media, he has never revealed himself so explicitly. We get to see ALL of Johnny. Many from the gay community have dealt with body image, now add a camera crew for a network series on top of that. How did Johnny deal with the sex scenes?
Sibilly: I’ve been very public about how I feel about my body and that it ebbs and flows. Some days I feel like the baddest bitch on the block and some days I don’t feel as great. It’s important to honor that truth and not always need to be like Lizzo every day, right? I’m sure even Lizzo has days where she’s thinking, I hate this. It’s such a testament that we can all live in those spaces and know that we are worthy, no matter how we’re feeling. There’s definitely been times on set, even where Stephen, came up to me and asked, “How are you? How are you feeling? Because it seems like you’re a little bit out of it.” And I am because I’m thinking about what I look like. No one will understand unless they’re in that circumstance. On one hand, it’s very freeing to proclaim, “Baby, this is me!” but I can totally see why actors are insane and why they’re worried about what pictures are taken of them. So that was definitely a learning moment. But it’s so important is to show these characters as real people, no matter who they are. I see my weight fluctuations in the episodes and I’m like, that’s a human thing.
All of those things are very real, and should always be honored. We’ve lived in a society for a very long time that has told us, especially in the queer community, that there is one type of way to look and be. It’s a constant work to dismantle that kind of thinking. I have learned to love my body more after being so exposed on this show. I have told Steven I want to be naked more. You’re out there on camera naked and afraid, but then when you realize you’re taken care of and you are loved by yourself, your friends and family, then it makes it so much easier.
RYAN O’CONNELL (HE/HIM) as JULIAN (HE/HIM)
Body image in our community is not just about nudity. Ryan O’Connell, who also serves as an executive producer and writer for the show, puts the spotlight on the often-ignored disabled voices of both screen actors and of the LGBTQ community, physically and emotionally. Ryan’s character Julian is the nerd of the group who is seemingly shy but not averse to some public action. Julian’s journey is to find his own identity, free from an overbearing mother (played by Kim Cattrall). Ryan worked as a successful blogger and writer for years, hiding his cerebral palsy from his coworkers. He came out of the disabled closet in a column that he later fashioned into his memoir I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves that, after some difficulty getting produced, became the Netflix series Special. A gay character who was disabled? It was a first for television. Ryan is no stranger to content that challenges the industry norm. The transition from running the entire project for Special to joining a group endeavor was a welcome change for Ryan.
O’CONNELL: I loved it. Doing Special was amazing, but it deleted years off my life. I really, really, really was excited to be part of an ensemble. The show is Stephen’s baby, so it’s his vision but he really let me spread my creative wings. I just felt like I was in service of his vision, which I really enjoyed. Stephen and I just work really well together, and I feel like what he wanted to do with QAF and what I wanted to do was very much simpatico.
Ryan’s relationship with QAF started with the American version, renting it at Blockbuster incognito explaining to his mother that his closeted interest in the show was merely writing research. Even though he was seeing the gay lifestyle presented as normal, he still wasn’t quite represented.
O’CONNELL: It was the first snapshot of queer life that I ever had. And also, as a horny 12-year-old going through puberty, it definitely supplied a lot of jerk-off material. That being said, and this is where it gets complicated, is that in the late 90s, disability was not at the forefront. I mean, it still isn’t, to be honest, but my takeaway from watching the American version of QAF was, “okay being disabled and gay is gonna be a rough journey for me.” When Stephen told me he was doing the reboot and he wanted me to be a part of it, I felt like this was an opportunity to do a solid for 12-year-old me in a way.
There are so many reboots now that I feel can’t justify their existence beyond a cash grab. And I really believe with Queer as Folk, there needed to be a reboot. A lot has changed in the last 20 years. And it was really exciting to tell a story about what being queer looks like now and do it in a really cool, inclusive way that didn’t feel like woke intersectional bingo.
Not only does the series include one disabled character, but there are many in this ensemble, including Marvin who doesn’t take crap from anyone. Ryan writes an episode in the first season that specifically focuses on the disabled LGBTQ community. Ryan masterfully meshes the emotional trauma that can exist in that niche of the community with beauty and passion that also exists in the celebration of sex. Not to give anything away, but there is a touching scene where a disabled character’s body is lovingly explored in a moment of hot lovemaking.
I think disabled people were castrated at birth. Like our dicks just get cut off by the doctor. They’re like, “Well, they won’t be needing this. Here you go!” I think it’s really important to highlight that disabled people are sexual, that they’re sexually viable and they have needs and wants and desires. We’re horny as hell! I love being a THOT on screen and it’s so funny because in Special, I was naked a bunch, but it was a very documenting style. It was very raw, which I love, and I thought was really important to show. But there’s just something about being in a hot Queer as Folk sex scene … you know what I mean? I just want to be hot. Is that okay?
With the evolution of our community’s growing alphabet, the queer disabled community is still not getting the inclusion it deserves. Showcased characters on screen are few and far between, nightclub layouts and Pride events don’t seem very able to include those with disabilities and dating apps can be even worse. For Ryan, disabled representation goes beyond our community.
O’CONNELL: Ableism is everywhere. It’s like carbon monoxide, you’re breathing it in and you’re getting poisoned without realizing it. We live in a capitalist society where a lot of our value is tied to our productivity and being bigger, faster, stronger and producing, producing, producing. Some have this idea that people with disabilities can’t hang. Also, we live long enough, we probably will all end up being disabled in some form and people are profoundly uncomfortable with that idea in the way they’re uncomfortable with aging. We don’t really know what to do with aging, so we stick people in nursing homes. Disability is something that we just don’t like to think about. That’s another great thing about Stephen. When he told me he wanted me to be in the show, my poisoned brain was thinking, “wait, what do you mean? But there’s already a disabled character!” I was already blown away that he included the character of Marvin. I thought including two disabled characters is truly groundbreaking, which is kind of sad. For me the bar is so low it’s underground, but what’s amazing about Stephen is that when he talks about inclusivity, disability is always a part of that which is seldom the case. I think it’s cool to be a part of something where I’m not the only disabled character. I mean, that’s like pretty fucking chic.
FIN ARGUS (THEY/THEM) as MINGUS (HE/HIM-THEY/THEM)
Where would QAF be without an angst filled high schooler? Enter Fin Argus as Mingus, the baby of the group. With a leading role in Disney+ musical drama Clouds and an appearance in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Fin is able to celebrate and explore their queer identity for this role. Whereas previous iterations have presented cookie-cutter versions of the pretty gay boy, Fin’s Mingus is the high schooler for today’s generation and Fin’s acting approach is equally part of that generation.
Argus: The beautiful thing about Mingus is that they are not interested in labeling themselves and that’s the power of this new wave of queer youth. There is less explaining the minutia of identity and that’s something that I can relate to. What’s really beautiful is you see this fluidity in their queerness and that’s something I don’t think Mingus has ever second-guessed. They’re on this coming-of-age journey and coming into their own queerness and you get to watch that unfold. I think that’s going to keep on developing and who knows where it’ll go. And that’s how I feel about my queerness as well. It’s this moving target every time I try to put my finger on it, it’s somewhere different. So, I’m just not all that concerned with trying to find the right word, because what you’re watching is the truth. That is Mingus’ truth and it’s constantly evolving and fluctuating between masculine and feminine. They embody authentic humanity and that’s what I love about queerness.
The thing that I love is explicit queerness, and I want to see more of that in TV and film. That’s what really drew me to doing this show besides Stephen just being a super talented filmmaker. I heard from him, firsthand, how important it was to represent stories and have those stories performed by queer people. And even on the production end of things. It’s a very queer show on every level of production. And that’s something that I’ve never experienced. I would imagine it’s not very common, so that was really special.
Mingus is not only exploring his gender fluidity, but he is also experiencing the ups and downs of sex and the emotional power behind drag. There is a lot of complex queerness happening here. Was Fin worried about being cast in such a queer role so early in his career?
Argus: I’ve been really passionate about explicit storytelling for a while. And my plan was to do that through music. I’ve been holding onto my music because I’ve historically played very boy next door type characters. I wasn’t necessarily in a place in my career where I felt like I’d be able to support myself. There is still typecasting and queer actors being put in a box. It’s still very real because there’s a lot of nuanced politics in casting. I see that shifting now and I feel really lucky to be a part of such an explicitly queer show. I firmly believe that everyone does an incredible job in this show, and that’ll speak for itself. This is a team of queer people who have come together and told an incredible story and an entertaining story and I think queerness is an asset. It has helped me tap into my own vulnerability and I’m 100% confident that my queerness is going to help me book the roles that I want in the future.
Fin is a consummate musician. After seeing his older sister perform the classical guitar, he was inspired to start his own musical journey and in addition to learning piano, the French horn, cello, ukulele, mandolin, banjo, and bass guitar, he started writing music at the age of 10. Music is at the center of everything he does.
Argus: Music is always involved in my character building, no matter what, even if the character’s not a musician, per se. I build playlists based on the character; I try to figure out what type of music the character would listen to. You can see in Mingus’ bedroom all the posters on the walls, those are based on musicians I shared with the set design department. All of the musical influences in Mingus’ life were built by me and Stephen, who also had a large hand in deciding what songs were performed. For this one, it was a lot of my middle school and early high school; pop-punk era and hyper pop. It’s very angry, edgy, often queer artists, and a little bit of new wave. That’s the vibe of Manus in my mind.
As the fates would have it, Fin and Stephen met before QAF came around. Under lockdown, tucked away in a small town, Fin would see a guy walking his chihuahua every day and would wave. After watching the film Closet Monster, Fin looked up the writer/director on Instagram just to find out that it was his dog-walking neighbor. The two became friends and would share ideas and ultimately, Fin shared his music with Stephen. Mingus’ aesthetic was born.
DEVIN WAY (HE/HIM) as BRODIE (HE/HIM)
Devin Way rounds out that cast as Brodie, a young man lost in limbo trying to decide what life path to take, collecting hookups and nights out in the process. Starting his career as a competitive cheerleader and model, Way moved from Texas to Los Angeles and appeared as Blake Simms in Grey’s Anatomy. The role of Brodie is certainly a change for Devin.
His early exposure to QAF sounds familiar.
Way: Growing up I didn’t have access to the UK version of the show. However, through my secret teenage, dial-up internet, exploration of my queerness I discovered the American QAF. It was a show that I would watch clips of in the dark. It portrayed a world that I didn’t know or understand but always hoped I would one day have the freedom to explore myself.
After six rounds of auditions, he gained a deep understanding of Brodie and allowed him to become comfortable with his queerness, discovering parts of himself that he never fully allowed himself to explore. Filming the series has changed him.
Way: Both myself and my acting became more honest. When you are surrounded by people who are discovering what is true and honest about themselves, then it inspires you to look for the truth and honesty of yourself. I was so grateful to get to be placed in a space as creative and SAFE as our QAF set to explore the honesty of my work and myself. I learned so much during shooting about the different shades and colors of queerness. I am so excited for the world to also get to see an honest look into that through the eyes of our show!
Brodie is the show’s bad boy that we root for. Does he make the best choices? No. Does he learn from his mistakes? Probably not. Are we a fan? Absolutely.
Way: Brodie and I have a lot of similarities, which I love! I am most like Brodie in the sense that we both lead with our hearts and want everyone around us to feel seen and loved. I am least like Brodie in the sense that I don’t run away when there is conflict. Brodie’s most frustrating trait to me is his inability to stay in a room when being confronted.
The passion and optimism in talking to this group of trailblazers is hope for the future of the entertainment industry. The show checks all the boxes without being cliché. The show is unapologetically queer and looks like our community and not a paper doll version of what is commercially interpreted. But with our boom in representation and so much new LGBTQ content, why do we need to go back to Babylon?
Dunn: Our community is really divisive, divided, and critical, and for good reason because we’re starved for reflections of ourselves. And then when we see them, it’s like, that doesn’t look like me. Now I think where we’re allowed to have messy, flawed, complex characters who don’t need to necessarily be the ideal, the role model. By being gifted the opportunity to continue the legacy of QAF and to create a new chapter in the book of Queer as Folk. QAF is allowing us the power to tell our marginalized stories that do not ever get to see the light of day. We have characters in our show that have never really been seen on television before in this way. Being under the umbrella of QAF allowed us to blast through the door, demanding that green light to make sure this show and these stories get heard now.
Queer As Folk premiers on Peacock on June 9th.
Last modified: May 31, 2022