Sunday, August 25, 2019

Emmy Episodes: Pose

It’s always my policy to watch every Emmy-nominated episode each year, which leads me to sample a handful of shows that I don’t tune in to on a regular basis. For the fourth year in a row, I’m making a special effort to spotlight each of those installments to offer my perspective on shows that I don’t review each week.

Pose: Season 1, Episode 2 “Access” (B+)

I watched the pilot of this show back when it aired last June and found it mesmerizing in certain facets but ultimately not covering a world that was all that interesting to me. That’s not meant to be narrow-minded, merely that it wasn’t the most enticing subject matter. Fast-forward to now, and this show has been one of the most consistently-acclaimed series, the only Golden Globe-nominated Best Drama Series entry I hadn’t seen last year and now one of three shows I need to sample substantially for the upcoming Emmy Awards. After the pilot, this is the second of the show’s six submitted hours. In some ways, it’s a difficult show to take a deep dive into, but it’s also very accessible. The format of the balls makes for a great framing device, and it was interesting to see Blanca and Elektra relate to each other on a certain level before eventually having a rematch that went to the former defending champion. We mostly see their lives within this world, free from harassment and persecution, but this episode did feature a series of upsetting moments with Blanca being discriminated from, of all places, a gay bar. It didn’t take much for Matt to realize that Stan was asking for a raise so that he could pay for a lover, and his advice was rather straightforward and highly chauvinistic. I’m going to be watching a handful of other episodes over the next few days, and I feel ready to get attached to some of these characters and this universe.