Pandemic Could Change How The LGBTQ Series Tells Its Story

L-R Dyllon Burnside and Billy Porter in ‘Pose’ (screen capture)

As Pride Month 2020 has begun amid ongoing concerns for dealing with the COVID-19 health threat, this certainly would be a good time to serve up a new season of the critically-acclaimed FX series Pose.

But alas, while the first two seasons of the diverse, queer-themed series premiered in time for Pride, this year we are without our fix of ballroom fierceness as production was shut down early in the coronavirus pandemic.

Series star Indya Moore, who plays aspiring model ‘Angel Evangelista,’ recently told Variety, “When production paused, I wasn’t shocked — I knew it would happen — but it was a bittersweet moment for me.” 

“On the one hand, if anyone had gotten sick, it surely would have spread fast,” they added. “On the other hand, most folks working on a production are living paycheck to paycheck. So I was worried about how they are going to survive.” 

Co-creator Steven Canals shared with the venerable Hollywood outlet that the show will definitely return – it was renewed for Season 3 after just one episode of the second season had aired – but how the storytelling is handled may shift.

“Things like kissing — we will likely forgo those moments,” said Canals.

“The place on our show where the biggest impact will be felt will be the ball scenes,” he added referring to the massive number of background actors featured in the dance sequences.

“Those scenes have 125 to 150 background actors,” explained Canals. “That’s tricky because that’s such an important and critical part of our show and the narrative. We’re just, only now, having conversations of ‘Is there a world where we forgo these things?’”

Canals shares that the entire season hadn’t been fully scripted yet when the production shut down.

“I haven’t had anybody reach out asking for those scripts,” said Canals. “It’s all been about family and really caring for each other’s well-being.”

But Canals does guarantee there will be another season of Pose, and one that will put the powerful LGBTQ politics of the series “upfront and center,” where they always have been.

“So in terms of the narrative of Season 3 and the way we’re moving forward, I think it will inherently address what’s happening currently with COVID-19,” adds the openly queer screenwriter. “All of that was already baked into the DNA of the show.”

It’s hard to imagine the series without the now-iconic ballroom scenes depicting so much LGBTQ tribal pride. Or groundbreaking love scenes between Emmy Award-winner Billy Porter’s ‘Pray Tell’ and Dyllon Burnside’s ‘Ricky Evangelista.’

But trust and believe, the creative powers that brought us the most diverse LGBTQ cast of actors and writers will find a way. 

Season 1 of Pose is currently available on Netflix with Season 2 joining the lineup on the streaming platform on June 11.

(source: Variety)

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