Emmy Nominations: POSE Star Mj Rodriguez Makes History

Mj Rodriguez of POSE
Mj Rodriguez of POSE
Mj Rodriguez of POSE (via Instagram)

Mj Rodriguez made history today as she was honored with an Emmy Award nomination for her role as ‘Blanca’ on the acclaimed FX series POSE.

Receiving a nod for Lead Actress in a Drama Series, Rodriguez becomes the first trans actress to be recognized in a lead acting category.

Series co-creator Steven Canals celebrated the news on Twitter:

The third and final season of POSE garnered a total of 9 nominations this morning including Outstanding Drama Series and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for Billy Porter.

This is Porter’s 3rd nomination having previously made history himself when he took home the Emmy For Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his role of ‘Pray Tell’ in 2019.

The series has been a trailblazer from the get-go by featuring the largest trans cast in TV history. And yet, until now, none of the trans female cast members had been recognized by the Emmys.

“Michaela Jaé (Mj) Rodriguez’s Emmy nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series is a breakthrough for transgender women in Hollywood, and a long-overdue recognition for her groundbreaking performance over the past three seasons of POSE,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis.

“Additionally, the show’s nomination for Outstanding Drama Series, as well as Billy Porter’s third nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, mark a historic show that undoubtedly raised the bar for trans representation on television and changed the way viewers around the world understand the trans community.

In additional LGBTQ Emmy news, RuPaul’s Drag Race was honored with 9 nominations including Outstanding Competition Program and Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program for Mama Ru. Plus, two nods for RuPaul’s Drag Race Untucked including Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program.

Netflix’s Queer Eye garnered 6 nominations including Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program as well as Outstanding Structured Reality Program.

And Randy Rainbow received his 3rd nomination for Best Short Form Variety Series. He won in 2019.

GLAAD has assembled a complete list of LGBTQ nominations here.

You can see the full list of 2021 Emmy Award nominations here. The 73rd Annual Emmy Awards will air live on CBS Sunday, September 19.

News Round-Up: September 21, 2020

Me and the Snoop

Some news items you might have missed:

Snoop Watch: Taking a ride with Snoopy (above). He’s soooo good in the car… #BeagleLife

Law And Crime: A federal judge in Wisconsin ruled on Monday that absentee ballots postmarked as mailed on Nov. 3—namely, Election Day—shall be counted up to six days later.

The Advocate: Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden denounced Poland’s so-called ‘LGBT-free zones’ as “having no place in the European Union or anywhere in the world.” Biden has pledged to make LGBTQ+ rights around the world a priority of his administration.

Flip-Flop: In a letter to his Senate Judiciary Committee colleagues, Sen. Lindsey Graham says he’s reversed on confirming a Supreme Court Justice so close to a presidential election because he thinks Democrats were mean to Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearings.

Tennessean: Former Nashville Councilman Tony Tenpenny died of complications due to COVID-19 on Sunday after several weeks in the hospital. In the months before his death, the conservative Republican shared several social media posts expressing doubts about the coronavirus pandemic including a post calling the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) “pure lying asses.”

Reuters: Spain has recorded 31,428 more coronavirus cases since Friday, bringing the total number of confirmed infections to 671,468, health ministry data showed on Monday. Spain has the highest number of COVID-19 cases in western Europe and regional authorities have ordered a partial lockdown from Monday in some Madrid neighborhoods where cases are rising fast.

ETonline: I thought the Television Academy did a terrific job presenting its virtual Emmy Awards last night, although some of the attempts at comedy fell a bit flat without a live audience’s reaction.

For instance, having lost earlier in the Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series category (for the 4th time), a stunning Laverne Cox presented the award for Outstanding Writing in a Drama Series and did a funny bit about missing out on the award. But the tone of her voice – plus no live audience to laugh along with her – made for an awkward moment, and ABC censored part of her remarks.

The Best Kind Of ‘Schitt’s-Storm’ At The 72nd Emmy Awards

The stars of Schitt’s Creek at the 2020 Emmy Awards (image via Instagram/SchittsCreek)

It was a Schitt’s-krieg at the 72nd Annual Emmy Awards Sunday night as the LGBTQ-themed Schitt’s Creek swept the major comedy categories winning a record-breaking 9 Emmys, the most ever for a comedy series in a single year.

It was quite the capper for the sixth and final season of the show which has become beloved by straight and queer audiences alike, drawn in by the series’ celebration of inclusivity and diversity. The series spent much of the season on the touching, and often hysterical, same-sex love story between Dan Levy’s ‘David Rose’ and Noah Reid’s ‘Patrick.’

Catherine O’Hara was the first cast member to be honored on Sunday night as she scored for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series. The win marked O’Hara’s first at the Emmys.

“This is so cool,” said O’Hara from a viewing party in Toronto. “I will forever be grateful to Eugene and Daniel Levy for the opportunity to play a woman of a certain age—my age—who gets to fully be her ridiculous self.”

Eugene Levy followed that winning Outstanding Actor in a Comedy Series for his role as the show’s patriarch, Johnny Rose.

His son and series co-creator Dan Levy and his co-star Annie Murphy both picked up statues for their performances in the Outstanding Supporting Actor and Actress categories.

At that point, an overwhelmed Dan Levy tweeted out, “What the actual f*ck!”

But wait! There’s more!

Dan Levy was also honored for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series.

And finally, the show took home the top honor, Outstanding Comedy Series.

In accepting the award, Dan Levy took a moment to encourage viewers to get out and vote.

“Our show at its core is about the transformational effects of love and acceptance and that is something that we need more of now than ever before,” said Dan Levy as he accepted the award. “I just wanted to say that for any of you who have not registered to vote, please do so, and then go out and vote because that is the only way we are going to have some love and acceptance out there. Please do that. I’m so sorry for making this political, but I had to!”

His dad chimed in thanking his son for taking “our ‘fish out of water’ story about the Rose family” and transforming it into “a celebration of inclusivity, a castigation of homophobia, and a declaration of the power of love.”

Earlier in the week, Schitt’s Creek also won Emmys for casting and costumes at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards.

It was quite the reversal of fortune for the show which was shut out of contention during its first four seasons. Last year, the Pop TV series garnered four nominations, including one for Outstanding Comedy, but went home empty-handed.

In other queer Emmy news, RuPaul’s Drag Race won 6 awards including the show’s third-in-a-row Outstanding Competition Program Emmy Award and Mama Ru’s 5th straight win for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program.

Former Disney Channel star Zendaya (24) also made history as the youngest actress to win in the Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series for her compelling work as complicated queer teen ‘Rue’ on HBO’s Euphoria.

For a list of all of Sunday night’s winners, head over to Emmys.com.

(source: The New York Times, Emmys.com)

News Round-Up: September 20, 2020

Some news items you might have missed:

NewNowNext: RuPaul (above) has made Emmys herstory by snatching her fifth consecutive Emmy for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program. RuPaul’s Drag Race is nominated for Outstanding Competition Program during this year’s Primetime Emmys, Sunday, September 20 at 8pm ET on ABC.

Edge Media: A gay couple in New York recalls the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg officiating their wedding.

KIT212: Check out Kenneth’s weekly round-up of the latest in LGBTQ publications like South Florida’s Hot Spots! (below) featuring Pose star Billy Porter.

(image via Hot Spots Magazine)

New York Times: Democratic donors gave more money online in the 9 p.m. hour Friday after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death was announced — $6.2 million — than in any other single hour since ActBlue, the donation-processing site, was started 16 years ago. Then donors broke the site’s record again in the 10 p.m. hour when donors gave another $6.3 million — more than $100,000 per minute.

The Nation: Last week, a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) whistleblower told the press that agency officials had ordered him to downplay the threat of white supremacist terrorism. A recent DHS intelligence assessment about physical threats to the 2020 election season identifies “white supremacist extremists” as the foremost threat to the democratic process this year.

Out Music: Ahead of their upcoming, pandemic-delayed album Love Goes, Grammy winner Sam Smith busts some dance moves in the music video for the new electro-pop dance single “Diamonds.” The album was postponed from an original release date in June due to the coronavirus health threat. The powers that be also wisely rethought the original title, To Die For, with the pandemic in mind.

Big Emmy Nominations For Schitt’s Creek, RuPaul’s Drag Race, Billy Porter & More

The cast of Schitt’s Creek (via Instagram)

The 2020 Emmy Award nominations were announced this morning with lots of LGBTQ recognition to go around.

Schitt’s Creek garnered a whopping 15 nominations including Outstanding Comedy Series as well as Outstanding Lead Actor / Lead Actress / Supporting Actor / Supporting Actress for Eugene Levy, Catherine O’Hara, Daniel Levy, and Annie Murphy respectively.

Daniel Levy is also nominated for Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series. The show has received four nominations in past years.

VH1’s RuPaul’s Drag Race scored 10 nominations including Outstanding Competition Program and one for Mama Ru for Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program.

RuPaul’s Drag Race: Untucked was nominated for two trophies including Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program, and RuPaul’s Drag Race Out Of The Closet scored a nod for Outstanding Short Form Nonfiction or Reality Series.

The ‘make better’ show Queer Eye was honored with 7 nominations including Outstanding Structured  Reality Program, and Outstanding Host for a Reality or Competition Program.


Billy Porter was nominated again for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series for his performance as Pray Tell in FX’s Pose. Porter took home the trophy last year in the same category.

The series also received nominations for period costumes, hairstyling, and makeup, but no Emmy love for any of the transgender actresses on the show – Mj Rodriguez, Dominique Jackson, Indya Moore, and Angelica Ross.  Additionally, the show itself was not nominated for Outstanding Drama Series.

Steven Canals, one of the co-creators of the show, made note of that on social media.


The wild and wooly Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness received 6 nominations including Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series.

We’re Here, starring Bob the Drag Queen, Eureka O’Hara, and Shangela, was nominated for Outstanding Unstructured Reality Program.

Holland Taylor was nominated for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie for her delicate turn as a movie studio casting director in Netflix’s Hollywood. Jim Parsons also scored an Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Limited Series of Movie nod for his scheming talent agent in Hollywood as well. Hollywood, which reimagines the Golden Age of Tinsel Town with marginalized communities like Black and LGBTQ Americans finding success in the 1940s, received 12 nominations in total.

In the Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series category, Laverne Cox received a nomination for her appearance in the final season of Netflix’s Orange Is The New Black. Cherry Jones was nominated in the same category for her work in HBO’s Succession.


Political satirist Randy Rainbow was honored with a nomination for Outstanding Short Form Variety Series for his popular parodies of Broadway tunes which lampoon political figures.

HBO’s dystopian superhero drama Watchmen walked away with the most nominations, 26 in all, followed by Amazon’s stylish comedy The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel with 20 nods.

For a complete list of all nominees head over to Emmys.com.

The 72nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards, hosted by Jimmy Kimmel, will be presented on September 20 on ABC.

News Round-Up: July 13, 2020

Jwan Yosef (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

ManCrush Monday: That time when Ricky Martin’s other half, Jwan Yosef (above), showed off his ‘baby lifting arms.’ #dang

Gold Derby: Openly gay former South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has been entered for Emmy consideration in the category of Best Comedy Guest Actor for his guest-hosting stint on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!”

CNN: The body of former GLEE actress Naya Rivera, 33, who was missing since Wednesday, has been found floating in a Southern California lake. Rivera’s role on GLEE gave queer Puerto Rican representation to millions. She is the third original GLEE cast member to die. In 2013, Cory Monteith died of a drug overdose and Mark Stalling committed suicide in 2018 after being found guilty of possessing child porn.

TheaterMania: Hamilton has become the first cast recording to reach the top two on the Billboard 200 albums chart since 1969 thanks to the musical’s premiere on Disney+. In 1969, the original cast recording of Hair spent 13 weeks in the no. 1 slot. Hamilton had previously peaked in the no. 3 position back in 2016, tying with The Book of Mormon.

Miami Herald: Florida resident Joseph Fucheck is facing criminal charges for waving a pistol at a Black homeowner in North Miami-Dade while claiming to be a 35-year Navy SEAL veteran. Except – it was a decades-old lie perpetrated by Fucheck. The Navy SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, which maintains paperwork for all SEALs since World War II, has no record of him.

CBS17: An Arkansas police officer told a colleague he would ‘shoot any protesters’ who might come to his door. But Calvin Salyers, 33, has now been charged with manslaughter after shooting through his door on June 3 killing a fellow police officer who dropped by to pick up a patrol car.

Podcast of the Day: A podcast about gay TV,  Gayest Episode Ever, explores LGBT+ themed one-off episodes that classic sitcoms (like The Golden Girls, Frasier, and Cheers) would do back in the day when it was rare to see queer characters represented on broadcast television.

The podcast – hosted by Drew Mackie, a journalist, and Glen Lakin, a screenwriter – offers insight into the evolution of queer visibility, gay rights, and how culture can both affect — and BE affected by — what we see on TV.

The episode below dissects a 1977 episode of Maude when Bea Arthur’s title character argued with her neighbor Arthur over the opening of a gay bar in town.

Podcast: Chatting With Emmy Award Winning Creators Of ‘After Forever’

The cast of ‘After Forever’ (via Instagram)

Join me as I chat with the Emmy Award-winning creators of the Amazon Prime Video digital series, After Forever.

After Forever stars Kevin Spirtas (Dr. Craig Wesley on Days of Our Lives) and Mitchell Anderson (Doogie Howser, Party of Five) as a mid-life gay couple living in New York City who appear to have it all — until Jason’s untimely death forces Brian to think about his own future and ultimately his own mortality, without the love of his life.

As Brian puts his life back together, Jason periodically appears to help him focus on his new life and moving on, most notably with his new boyfriend.

Spritas co-created and co-wrote the series with acclaimed playwright Michael Slade.

After Forever also stars familiar faces from TV, film and Broadway stages like Colleen Zenk (As the World Turns), Michael Urie (Ugly Betty), Anita Gillette (Chapter Two), Mary Beth Peil (Dawson’s Creek), and Tony Award winner Cady Huffman (The Producers).

The lauded series features a diverse group of characters who find their way through life’s constant changes, including relationships, love, and loss, in an often overlooked group – the mature gay man.

L-R Mitchell Anderson and Kevin Spirtas in ‘After Forever’


Season One of After Forever was nominated for 8 Emmy Awards and won five including Outstanding Digital Drama Series, Outstanding Writing for a Digital Drama Series, and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series.

Season Two has already been nominated for 10 Indie Series Awards including Best Drama Series, Best Ensemble Drama Series and a slew of acting, writing and directing nods as well.

Hit play as I chat (and laugh) with two very talented men.

For more info about the show, click over to afterforevertheseries.com.