Queer Eye Season 2 Will Feature a Female Cancer Survivor and Transgender Man
“The original show was fighting for tolerance. We’re fighting for acceptance.” These words kicked off the first episode of the Netflix Queer Eye reboot featuring the amazing new Fab 5 (Bobby Berk, Karamo Brown, Tan France, Antoni Porowski, and Jonathan Van Ness). The reality show quickly rose in popularity as viewers fell in love with the Fab 5’s messages of self-love, expression, and self-care. And, as the first season showed us, Queer Eye was no longer just for the straight guy.
In one of the most heartfelt episodes “To Gay or Not Too Gay”, the Fab 5 make over AJ, a gay man from Atlanta who’s building up the courage to come out to his stepmother. It’s incredibly moving, and if you only watch one episode of Queer Eye, this is the one. The episode includes a candid conversation between AJ and Karamo about being gay and black, AJ’s own challenges with not wanting to dress “feminine”, and every bit of it will make you cry. (Also: AJ and Drey are engaged now!)
It’s exciting, then, that season 2 will feature an even more diverse group of subjects. According to EW, the subjects, or “heroes”, include Tammye in episode one, the first woman to get the Queer Eye treatment, and Skyler, a trans man who’s recently “had a life- and body-altering surgery.”
Tammye is “a school teacher and cancer survivor who’s in the midst of planning her church’s homecoming.” Karamo says he was “excited” about the episode because of his own relationship with his church. “I know what this means to the black community”, he says, “I know how this went back when slaves were freed; I know all the history behind this. So to have this moment for me was like, ‘Yes! The world is going to see the love, and how African-Americans congregate and where they find their strength in their family and how they support their community through the homecoming service.'”
Jonathan calls Tammye an “incredible woman” (something that reminds him of his mom) who’s “constantly doing so much for other people” to the point it’s hard for her to “slow down and take some of that praise and take some of that self-care for [herself].”
On giving Skyler the Queer Eye treatment, Jonathan says, “One of my closest friends is a trans man who is incredible. And a lot of my clients are trans women. So I am really hoping that we can do right by our trans brothers and sisters…[Skyler] is going through so much, so [it was important to be] gentle and respectful and not to be a queenie know-it-all dum-dum when you’re trying to be a loving person.”
In the EW interview, Tan talks about how he “wasn’t as informed for Skyler”, and doing the episode “respectfully and appropriately.” Karamo also mentions speaking to Skyler specific challenges that transgender individuals face, like trying to get their licenses. Judging from the interviews, the Fab 5 all appear very self-aware in approaching an identity that is not theirs (I love you Jonathan), and it sounds like they’ll be learning and listening as well.
Netflix’s Queer Eye stands out as a feel-good reality show because it gives the Fab 5 and their subjects lots of time to talk through their routines, insecurities, and personalities. Self-expression is different for everyone, but there are definitely distinct challenges that a trans man like Skyler or a woman like Tammye will face, and I can’t wait to have Queer Eye open those dialogues.
Season two arrives on Netflix June 15th, are you going to check it out?
(via EW, image: Netflix)
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