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Janet Mock says Ryan Murphy’s Pose “radical” unlike Transparent because it stars five trans women of colour

Bea Mitchell April 15, 2018

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 13: Janet Mock attends the 2017 Forbes Women's Summit at Spring Studios on June 13, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images)

Writer and trans activist Janet Mock has opened up about Glee creator Ryan Murphy’s upcoming series Pose.

In an interview withThe Guardian, Mock – part of the writing/producing team on Pose – explained that the show will be more “radical” than Transparent, because “five black and brown trans women will be the centre of a show on a network drama in primetime”.

Pose is set in 1980s New York, and portrays life in the city’s iconic queer ballroom culture, as most famously portrayed in the film Paris is Burning.

A trailer landed this week ahead of the show’s hotly-anticipated premiere on FX on June 3 showing off the cast  – which features the most transgender actors of any TV show in recent history.

MJ Rodriguez, Indya Moore, Dominique Jackson, Hailie Sahar, and Angelica Ross, all of whom are transgender, star.

When asked by The Guardian what she thinks of Transparent, Mock explained: “I don’t watch it, so I don’t know.”

“It was never really for me. Just because there’s a trans character doesn’t mean it’s a show I would watch,” she added. “It’s about somebody way older than me, who was a professor. Transparent is about a white, middle-class, liberal family, so there are no intersections that interest me.”

“Our show is centring on trans women of colour in a way they’ve not been centred on ever. What’s so radical to me is that, unlike Transparent, where there is one main character who is trans and played by a man, we have five main characters who are trans played by trans women.

“That five black and brown trans women will be the centre of a show on a network drama in primetime is huge. And they’re going to be on billboards. It’s amazing this is going to exist in the world,” Mock said.

Previously, Murphy revealed that the first season of Pose will feature “50-plus LGBTQ characters”. He explained: “Along with being a dance musical and an affirming look at American life in the 1980s, I’m so proud that Pose and FX has made history right from the beginning by featuring the most trans series regular actors ever in an American television production.

“Additionally, the first season Pose will feature 50-plus LGBTQ characters — a record in American television history. I can’t wait for people to see this incredibly talented, passionate cast.”

Pose will also feature Kinky Boots star Billy Porter, as well as frequent Ryan Murphy collaborators Kate Mara and Evan Peters, both of American Horror Story.

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