‘POSE’ & ‘WandaVision’ Lead In Nominations For LGBTQ Critics 2021 TV Honors

Scenes from POSE and WandaVision (Eric Liebowitz/FX; Marvel Studios)

Take pride, Hollywood: GALECA: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, comprised of over 300 entertainment journalists in the U.S. and abroad, has announced its 2021 Dorian TV Award nominations.

“And I’m so proud,” says the Society’s newly-elected president, Monika Estrella Negra. “Our group’s nominations are diverse and fresh, signaling the overhaul of invisibility of marginalized communities and the heralding of a new generation of entertainment journalists.”

Disclaimer: I am a proud voting member of GALECA.

The final season of Pose, FX’s dazzling and powerful found-family drama, holds sway with six nods, starting with Best TV Drama. Disney+’s amusing (and TV-spoofing) Marvel fantasy WandaVision keeps an eye out with five nominations. And following closely with four nominations each: HBO’s grim Kate Winslet-lead murder mystery Mare of Easttown and vividly frank trauma tale I May Destroy You, as well as the heartrending AIDS crisis drama It’s a Sin on spinoff network HBO Max.

Spurred by passionate pleas in trade publication editorials by non-binary activists, as well as non-binary journalists and others in GALECA’s own ranks, the group’s membership recently voted to make all Dorian performance categories gender-neutral (as they were in the group’s first three years of existence, beginning in 2009).

Aiming to alleviate concerns that the elimination of gendered acting categories would cut the number of nomination-worthy roles by half—and leave out artists that might otherwise be recognized—the Society moved to note 10 nominees, rather than the usual five, for Best TV Performance and Best Supporting TV Performance.

In the chief performance category, venerable stars like Winslett (for Easttown), Jean Smart (Hacks) and past Dorian Award winner Billy Porter (Pose) are up against rising talents like I May Destroy You’s creator Michaela Coel and Thuso Mbedu (The Underground Railroad). In the supporting race, Dorian final-ballot voters will choose from the likes of The Crown’s Gillian Anderson, 
John Boyega of auteur director Steve McQueen’s anthology drama Small Axe, Saturday Night Live’s latest breakout Bowen Yang and Easttown standout Julianne Nicholson.

Showing the medium is still thriving amid a pandemic, GALECA’s short-list picks include lots of first-season shows, including the electric dramas Bridgerton, Lovecraft Country and P-Valley, the over-the-top showbiz satires Girls5eva (produced by Tina Fey) and Hacks, and Best Current Affairs Show contenders Ziwe and The Amber Ruffin Show.

And holding court in the group’s trademark Campiest TV Show arena: The annual flashy and drama-filled live music performance battle Eurovision Song Contest, the nasty nurse rehash that was Ratched, the ultra-irreverent WandaVision, and more.

Dorian TV Award winners will be revealed Sunday, August 29. Last fall’s Dorians TV Toast 2020 special, a mix of comedy, original music and meaningful tributes to winners, featured appearances by Janelle Monáe, Regina King, Hugh Jackman, Dan Levy, Josh Thomas, Laverne Cox, John Oliver, Damon Lindelof, Margaret Cho, Chad Michaels and the exuberant Porter. The program, hosted by groundbreaking gay activist and broadcasting veteran Karel, can be viewed for free on demand on Revry.TV.

Viewers who missed GALECA’s more recent special, Dorians Film Toast 2021 can tune to Free Speech TV (FSTV) on June 27, 4pm EST, 1pm PST. The three-hour show, also hosted by Karel, will be repeated on the channel over July 4 weekend as well.

COMPLETE LIST OF DORIAN TV AWARD NOMINEES:

BEST TV DRAMA

Bridgerton
The Crown

Lovecraft Country
P-Valley
Pose
 
BEST TV COMEDY 

The Flight Attendant

Girls5eva
Hacks
PEN15
Ted Lasso
 
BEST LGBTQ SHOW

I May Destroy You
It’s A Sin 
Love, Victor 
Pose
Veneno
 
BEST TV MOVIE OR MINISERIES

I May Destroy You
It’s a Sin
Mare of Easttown 
Small Axe
The Queen’s Gambit
 
BEST UNSUNG SHOW

A Black Lady Sketch 
Show
Girls5eva
Love, Victor 
Search Party
Veneno 
We Are Who We Are
 
BEST TV PERFORMANCE

Michaela Coel, I May Destroy You
Kaley Cuoco, The Flight Attendant
Thuso Mbedu, The Underground Railroad
Elizabeth Olsen, WandaVision
Billy Porter, Pose
MJ Rodriguez, Pose

Jean Smart, Hacks

Jason Sudeikis, Ted Lasso
Anya Taylor-Joy, The Queen’s Gambit
Kate Winslet, Mare of Easttown
 
BEST SUPPORTING TV PERFORMANCE

Gillian Anderson, The Crown

John Boyega, Small Axe

Pappa Essiedu, I May Destroy You

Kathryn Hahn, WandaVision

Marielle Heller, The Queen’s Gambit

Callum Scott Howells, It’s a Sin

Dominique Jackson, Pose
Julianne Nicholson, Mare of Easttown

Jean Smart, Mare of Easttown

Bowen Yang, Saturday Night Live
 
BEST TV MUSICAL PERFORMANCE

Lady Gaga, “The Star-Spangled Banner,” Biden-Harris Inauguration
Jonathan Groff, “You’ll Be Back,” Hamilton 
Kathryn Hahn, “Agatha All Along,” WandaVision

Elton John & Years & Years, “It’s a Sin,” BRIT Awards 2021

Punkie Johnson, Anya-Taylor Joy, Lil Nas X, Kate McKinnon, Bowen Yang, “Pride Month Song,” Saturday Night Live
Bowen Yang (as The Iceberg That Sank the Titanic), “Loverboy,” Saturday Night Live 
 
BEST TV DOCUMENTARY OR DOCUMENTARY SERIES

Framing Britney Spears
I’ll Be Gone in the Dark
Pretend It’s a City
Pride
Tina
 
BEST CURRENT AFFAIRS SHOW

Full Frontal with Samantha Bee
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver
The Amber Ruffin Show
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Ziwe
 
BEST ANIMATED SHOW

Big Mouth
Bob’s Burgers
Harley Quinn
Invincible
South Park: The Pandemic Special
 
BEST REALITY SHOW

Legendary
Nailed It
Queer Eye
RuPaul’s Drag Race
The Great British Bake Off
 
MOST VISUALLY STRIKING SHOW

Bridgerton
The Crown
Lovecraft Country
Pose
Small Axe
The Mandalorian
WandaVision
 
CAMPIEST TV SHOW

At Home with Amy Sedaris
Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Square
Eurovision Song Contest
Ratched
WandaVision
 
WILDE WIT AWARD
(
To a performer, writer or commentator whose observations both challenge and amuse)
Michaela Coel

Kathryn Hahn

Fran Lebowitz

Randy Rainbow

Bowen Yang    
 
THE INAUGURAL “YOU DESERVE AN AWARD!” AWARD
(To a uniquely talented TV icon we adore)
Winner TBA

GALECA: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics’ Dorian Awards, formed in 2009, go to all of film and TV, mainstream to LGBTQ, reminding bigots, bullies and at-risk youth that the world looks to the queer eye for leads on great and unique entertainment.
The Society currently includes approximately 300 active journalists, and 20 culturally influential Advisory Board members, based in the U.S., Canada, Australia, U.K. and beyond. 

‘Love, Victor’ Season 2: Figuring Out ‘Perfect Level Of Gay’

Michael Cimino in 'Love, Victor'
Michael Cimino in 'Love, Victor'
Michael Cimino in ‘Love, Victor’ (image via Hulu)

For a lot young LGBTQ folks, coming out may seem like crossing a finish line, but as we know – it’s just a beginning.

Hulu released the official trailer for Season 2 of Love, Victor today which picks up right at the moment we last saw Victor (Michael Cimino) – coming out to his parents.

The series is the TV spinoff of the acclaimed 2018 film Love, Simon directed by Greg Berlanti.

But the new season of the coming-out/coming-of-age series won’t be our young hero coming out just to his family but the whole community of Creekwood High School.

In the trailer, Victor and boyfriend Benji (George Sear) decide they’re going public as a couple. “I want to tell people,” says Victor. “I’m ready. No more hiding who I am.” The next scene shows the adorbs duo linking hands as they walk through the school hallways.

And we’re off and running as Victor enters his junior year navigating the challenges and excitement of being out while trying to figure out “the perfect level of gay to keep everyone happy.”

Michael Cimino and xxxx in 'Love, Victor'
Michael Cimino and George Sear in ‘Love, Victor’

While Victor copes with his family and basketball teammates dealing with his revelation, his ex-girlfriend Mia (Rachel Wilson) is trying to move on but has her own turbulent times ahead of her.

Plus, Victor’s bestie Felix (Anthony Turtle) is getting more serious with his girlfriend Lake (Bebe Wood) as his mother’s battle with depression deepens as well.

And along the way, having sex for the first time waves hello in the distance.

Last June, co-showrunner Brian Tanen told TVLine, “We’d love to tell sexier stories.” And that looks to be the case as this is the first season of the dramedy produced for Hulu. The first season was originally filmed for Disney+ but was moved to Hulu after the material was deemed too mature for that family-friendly audience.

Season two premieres with all episodes on June 11th on Hulu.

POSE Will End After Upcoming 3rd Season

Billy Porter in the acclaimed FX series POSE
Billy Porter in the acclaimed FX series POSE
Billy Porter in the acclaimed FX series POSE

Pose Executive Producer, Writer, Director and Co-creator Steven Canals announced via Twitter today the acclaimed series will end after the upcoming third season.

“Hey Pose fam! We made the decision to end [the show] after 3 seasons because we reached the intended ending of our story,” tweeted Canals. “This experience has been life changing. THANK YOU is too small a word. And yet, it’s what is in my heart. Hope to see you May 2nd when we debut.”

Canals attached a further statement which read:

“‘Write the TV show you want to watch!’ That’s what I was told in 2014 while completing my MFA in screenwriting. At the time we weren’t seeing very many Black and Latino characters — that happened to also be LGBTQ+ — populating screens. And so I wrote the first draft of a pilot the ‘younger me’ deserved. Pose was conceived as a love letter to the underground NY ballroom community, to my beloved New York, to my queer & trans family, to myself.

“I, along with my incredible collaborators, never intended on changing the TV landscape. I simply wanted to tell an honest story about family, resilience, and love. How fortunate am I to have done that for three seasons. I’m filled with gratitude to our intrepid writers, cast, crew, and producers who worked tirelessly to make Pose come to life, humbled by our loyal audience, thankful to the ballroom community who trusted us to tell their story, overwhelmed by the critics who warmly embraced us, and forever indebted to Ryan Murphy, FX, and 20th Television for changing my life.”

Steven Canals, co-creator of the acclaimed series POSE, announced the series will end after the upcoming third season

The series garnered multiple Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for its first two seasons including a win for Billy Porter for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series at the 2019 Emmy Awards.

Pose Season 3 premieres May 2 on FX.

Matt Baume: Was ‘Bewitched’ About Gay People All Along?

Elizabeth Montgomery and Agnes Moorehead in Bewitched (screen capture)

Smart guy and LGBTQ pop culture historian Matt Baume takes a deep dive into the 1960s sitcom Bewitched calling it “one of the queerest shows” he’s ever seen.

From Baume:

The sitcom Bewitched is one of the queerest shows I’ve ever seen — which is a little strange, since it’s about a straight couple.

Just a few years later, Soap had gay characters; Mary Hartman Mary Hartman had a gay couple; MASH had a gay coming-out episode. Bewitched never had any of that.

And yet … it somehow feels more queer than any of those other shows. So, why is that? Well, that’s what I want to show you.

I love how Matt breaks these things down showing us LGBTQ characters and story themes were really out there all the time, we just didn’t know to look for it.

For more of my coverage of Matt Baume’s insights into classic TV, click here.

Podcast: The Best of 2020 – LGBTQ Edition

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

There was a lot in 2020 that was just heinous and I’m happy to leave it behind. But I did want to take a pause to look at some of the good news and big moments of the past year in this ‘Best of 2020 – LGBTQ edition.’

In this episode, I’m going to revisit some of the best songs, movies, TV, and top LGBTQ news stories of the year (at least in my opinion).

I know folks like to make Top 10 lists, but one of the hallmarks of The Randy Report is supposed to be brevity. Plus, if I’m putting my name on a “Best of…” list I want to feel strongly about them. So I’m going to try to stick to Top 5’s in this show.

I won’t give it all away but I cover:

• The 2020 election cycle and how LGBTQ folks were impacted and took part

• The forward progress of LGBTQ rights around the world

• Celebrities and politicians standing up for transgender people

• LGBTQ movies like Uncle Frank, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, and The Boys in the Band

• And music from terrific out indie artists like Milahroy, VINCINT, mxmtoon, Robby Hart, and Jakk Fynn

So, sit back and chill as I recap the Best of 2020 – LGBTQ Edition.

Trailer: ‘It’s A Sin’ Follows 3 Friends Through 80s AIDS Crisis

Olly Alexander in ‘It’s A Sin’

The UK’s Channel 4 released the trailer for the upcoming new drama series It’s A Sin set in the 80s, from Queer as Folk writer Russell T Davies.

The five-part series will star Years & Years singer Olly Alexander along with Stephen Fry, Neil Patrick Harris, Keeley Hawes, and Tracy Ann Oberman.

It’s A Sin explores the AIDS crisis in the 1980s by following the story of three friends who move to London as the HIV/AIDS epidemic unfolds.

From Channel 4:

Ritchie, Roscoe and Colin are young lads, strangers at first, leaving home at 18 and heading off to London in 1981 with hope and ambition and joy… and walking straight into a plague that most of the world ignores.

Year by year, episode by episode, their lives change, as the mystery of a new virus starts as a rumor, then a threat, then a terror, and then something that binds them together in the fight.

It’s the story of their friends, lovers and families too, especially Jill, the girl who loves them and helps them, and galvanizes them in the battles to come. Together they will endure the horror of the epidemic, the pain of rejection and the prejudices that gay men faced throughout the decade.

Look for the series to debut in 2021.

Daytime Emmy Noms Show Big Love For LGBTQ Series ‘After Forever’ & ‘Eastsiders’

Mitchell Anderson & Kevin Spirtas in ‘After Forever;’ the cast of ‘Eastsiders’ (images via Instagram)

The nominees for the 47th Annual Daytime Emmy® Awards were announced on Thursday with some big love to LGBTQ-themed work and artists.

The Netflix dark comedy Eastsiders scored 8 nominations including Outstanding Digital Drama Series, RuPaul’s Drag Race alum Willam Belli and Leith M. Burke each got a nod for Outstanding Supporting Actor Digital Series; Lin Shaye for Outstanding Guest Performer Digital Series; Outstanding Writing Team Digital Series; Outstanding Casting; Outstanding Costume Design; and Outstanding Makeup.

While RuPaul’s Drag Race alum Willam isn’t the first drag queen to receive an Emmy nod, I believe this is the first time a drag performer has received a nomination in an acting category.

The acclaimed Amazon Video digital series After Forever was honored with 6 nominations including Outstanding Digital Drama Series; Cady Huffman for Outstanding Lead Actress Digital Series; Lenny Wolpe for Outstanding Supporting Actor Digital Series; Mary Beth Peil for Outstanding Guest Performer Digital Series; Outstanding Writing Team Digital Series and Outstanding Art/Set Direction/Scenic Design.

This was the second season of the acclaimed Amazon series. Two years ago, After Forever received 8 nominations and won 5 including Best Digital Drama Series. Additionally, series creator Kevin Spirtas scored for Best Actor Digital Series and Best Writing Team.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Mary Beth Peil on joining the cast of AFTER FOREVER in Season 2: “I think the series is quite impressive, not just the story that they are telling but every one of us can relate to losing people,” she added. “It establishes a tone that is very unique and hard to describe. It allows everything to unfold naturally.” Read all about it in @digitaljournal & catch up on the series available on Amazon. #lgbtcommunity #lgbtpride #awardwinning #lgbt #laindiefilmfest #iawtvawards #outonfilmatlanta #outonfilm #accoladecompetition #loveandloss #gay #gaypride #watchnow #bingewatching #bingewatch #gsff2019 #daytimeemmys #indieseriesawards #emmys #emmywinner #afterforevertheseries #amazonprime #bingenetworks #kevinspirtas #mitchellanderson #filmnyc #nyc #marybethpeil

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Afternoon talkfest The Ellen DeGeneres Show added to its long list of Emmy honors with 5 nominations including Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show, Outstanding Writing for a Special Class Series, Outstanding Directing for Talk/Entertainment/Morning Program, Outstanding Sound Mixing, Outstanding Art/Set/Scenic Design.

And the innovative lip-sync documentary Stonewall Outloud, which utilized rare recordings of people who experienced the Stonewall uprising in 1969, received a nod for Outstanding Direction – Special Class.

The honors will be presented in a two-hour special on Friday, June 26 (8:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.

Since 1974, the Daytime Emmy® Awards have recognized outstanding achievement in daytime television programming. The awards are presented to individuals and programs broadcast between 2:00 am and 6:00 pm, as well as certain categories of digital and syndicated programming of similar content.

This year’s nominations were culled from more than 2,700 submissions and judged by a pool of 1,000 peer professionals from across the television industry.

Awards will be presented in leading categories during the telecast, with recipients and other special guests appearing from home in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

You can find the full list of nominees at TheEmmys.tv.

In case you missed it, you can check out my exclusive interview with the Emmy Award-winning co-creators of After Forever, Michael Slade & Kevin Spirtas, below.

Podcast: New Series ‘The Third’ Explores Triad Relationships

The stars of the new Dekkoo series, The Third

The Third is a provocative, sexy new original series created for the gay-centric streaming platform Dekkoo.

The series follows Jason (Sean McBride), a young man who enters into a passionate three-way relationship with an established gay Palm Springs couple – Carl (Corey Page) and David (Ryland Shelton). But he quickly learns that “adding a third” could bring a whole new set of skepticism, jealousy, and secrets.

In this episode, I chat with show creator Matthew Lynn, who fashioned some of the series after his own real-life experiences in a ‘triad’ or ‘thruple.’

Producer/filmmaker Matthew Lynn

Lynn was inspired to make the series to show the world there are different kinds of relationships that can work, none are wrong or right and all take some work.

The Third will be available for streaming on Dekkoo beginning October 24. Click the play button to listen to my chat with Matthew Lynn.

For those not familiar – Dekkoo is a streaming entertainment platform much like Hulu or Netflix, but its focus is on LGBTQ-themed content. For $9.99 a month you can stream gay-centric movies, TV series, short films; genres include mysteries, dramas, comedies, romance, sci-fi – the whole gamut of pop culture entertainment.

In fact, many of the movies you’ve heard me discuss here on The Randy Report are currently available on Dekkoo.

You can sign up for a free 7-day trial to see if it’s your thing, and for a limited time, when you sign up you can get 33% off your first 3 months by entering the promo code TheThird. (p.s. I get nothing whether you sign up or not – this isn’t a sponsored segment)

Click here – www.dekkoo.com – for more info. You can check out the trailer for Season 1 of The Third below.

Netflix: Offbeat, Heartwarming New Comedy Series ‘Special’

Ryan O’Connell and Punam Patel in ‘Special’

Netflix drops the official trailer for Special, an offbeat comedy series about a gay man with mild cerebral palsy.

Loosely based on the critically-acclaimed memoir by writer/actor Ryan O’Connell – I’m Special: And Other Lies We Tell Ourselves – the series stars O’Connell as a man who “decides to rewrite his identity as an accident victim and finally go after the life he wants.”

After years of dead-end internships, writing in his pajamas as a blogger, and communicating mainly via text messages, Ryan is hit by a car in the street. When his new co-workers assume his limp is due to the accident, he just never bothers to correct the misunderstanding.

“If you could get rid of the thing you hate most about yourself, the thing no one understands, wouldn’t you do it?”

The hilarious and heartwarming 8-episode series is being produced for Netflix by O’Connell along with Jim Parson’s That’s Wonderful Productions and Warner Bros’ Digital Networks’ Stage 13.

The series also stars Jessica Hecht, Punam Patel, Marla Mindelle, Augustus Prew, and Patrick Fabian.

O’Connell’s past writing includes being a contributor for Buzzfeed, Vice, Thought Catalog and other publications as well as serving as Executive Story Editor for the reboot of the hit NBC series, Will & Grace.

Special makes its Netflix premiere on April 12. Check out the trailer below.

That Time When The Mary Tyler Moore Show Went Gay

    The year was 1973. Homosexuality was considered a mental illness, you could be arrested for being gay in most of the country, no openly gay or lesbian person had ever been elected to public office. And Mary Tyler Moore, America’s sweetheart, put a gay man in front of viewers for an entire episode without anyone noticing until the last minute -- and then acted like it was no big deal. When it was, in fact, a very, very, very big deal.
Cloris Leachman on The Mary Tyler Moore Show

Journalist, historian and all-around smart-gay Matt Baume devotes this installment of his popular Culture Cruise web series on an episode of the iconic1970s sitcom, The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

The year was 1973. Homosexuality was considered a mental illness, you could be arrested for being gay in most of the country, no openly gay or lesbian person had ever been elected to public office. And Mary Tyler Moore, America’s sweetheart, put a gay man in front of viewers for an entire episode without anyone noticing until the last minute — and then acted like it was no big deal. When it was, in fact, a very, very, very big deal.

The episode, titled “My Brother’s Keeper,” aired on January 13, 1973. In the episode, “Phyllis” (played by Cloris Leachman) set out to set up “Mary” (Mary Tyler Moore) with her brother, “Ben.”

It turns out there’s no chemistry there, but Mary’s best friend “Rhoda” (Valerie Harper) ends up finding a connection with Ben. The problem is – Phyllis hates Rhoda, and can’t stand the idea of her brother with Rhoda.

Of course, in the end, Ben it’s revealed that Ben is gay.

What’s important here, though, is how the writers of TMTMS handled the moment. As you may remember, television (or most of America, for that fact) was not welcoming or warm-hearted when it came to ‘the gays.’

As Baume points out, if a gay person was on TV, they were usually portrayed as murderers or perverts. Note the infamous “The Homosexuals” documentary that aired in 1967 that declared “the average homosexual, if there is one, is promiscuous.”

What Baume does so well here is put what could be viewed as just another ‘gay punchline’ into perspective and gives us context on the whys and hows this was actually an important moment.

At the time the episode aired, Minneapolis (where TMTMS took place) outlawed homosexuality even though that same year saw the debut of Minneapolis first Pride event. And 1973 was the year homosexuality was removed from the list of mental illnesses.

I won’t spoil it for you, so watch the video.

Follow Matt Baume’s Culture Cruise on YouTube here, where he regularly takes a deep dive on LGBTQ themes in TV, movies, books, games and more.