'Pose' season 2 will show how characters live life to the fullest even with HIV and writer Our Lady J is here for it
With few hours left for the premiere of FX's groundbreaking drama 'Pose,' the anticipation on what to expect is soaring.
The teaser trailer showed us what to expect from the coming season, from Lil Papi (Angel Bismark Curiel) and Angel's (Indya Moore) love story to Elektra (Dominique Jackson) rising from the ashes and Blanca living her truly amazing life. In the 1980s world of drag culture, the glitz and glamour of drag hid the ugly truth of HIV/AIDS in the LGBTQ+ community where the disease was heavily looked down upon.
Season 2 of 'Pose' explores the plight of characters living with HIV AIDS starting right from the protagonist Blanca(MJ Rodriguez) and Pray Tell (Billy Porter). No, it will not be a depressing story where an HIV diagnosis leads to depression and bitterness towards life, in fact, the diagnosis unfurls a new chapter where life is to be lived to the fullest and bask in the love of family and friends.
'Pose' writer and producer, Our Lady J, said in a recent podcast interview, that the HIV AIDS epidemic will take the center stage this season and through it, she will tell a bit of her own story. "I came out HIV positive in 2004," says Our Lady J, and adds that she was in deep denial and heavily indulged in alcohol. When she knew she had to get her life together, she looked towards health and sobriety which she calls a "new life living with HIV." When she discovered that the show was inclined towards the HIV subplot, she told the writers that they could use her story as much as they liked. "I am so proud of where we are going," she states.
The critically acclaimed drama boasts the largest number of LGBTQ+ cast and crew in television history and 'Pose' is surely doing something right. "We are talking about diversity in the writer's room. Open up to people who have lived the experience and listen to what they have to say rather than reacting to someone else's version you saw on TV in 1985," the former 'Transparent' writer said as advice on handling something as sensitive as AIDS on TV.
"Great storytellers look outside what is happening in the real world," she adds.
"37 million people in the world live with HIV, why shame about HIV?" she asks. "It's a disease, nothing more." Destigmatizing the disease, Our Lady J points out that the main reason why AIDS became something that people were ashamed about is because in the 80s, the virus was "moralized," and came in conflict with sex.
Her message through the new season is simple, life happens even after HIV diagnosis and unless the virus is detectable, it is not transmittable. "Taking away the moralization is the cure," she adds.
Pose airs at 10 pm on FX tonight, June 11.