Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Emmy Catch-Up: Pose

Every year, I watch the six submitted episodes of every series I don’t regularly watch that’s up for one of the Emmy series prizes. This year, I’m getting a jump start to check out the entire season of some of most high-profile shows I didn’t watch when they originally aired.

Pose: Season 2, Episode 6 “Love's in Need of Love Today” (B+)

I remember last season’s AIDS benefit episode, “Love is the Message,” very strongly, and it’s the hour that own Billy Porter his Emmy. His performance here was just as formidable, as Pray collapsed during his own advertisement for his AIDS cabaret, landing himself in the hospital in advance of the event. His experiences were definitely intense, particularly his hallucination of his new spirit guide Candy, who keeps visiting him despite his insistence that it’s not yet his time. The benefit was pretty moving, featuring a show-stopping performance from Blanca, whose voice is incredible, while Elektra’s less on-key rendition was still full of passion. Blanca also put herself out there in a big way by telling everyone that she was positive, opening to being vulnerable. I was surprised to see that Frederica was open to the idea of supporting the benefit after her previous expressions of hateful prejudice, and after her own great musical number, it was devastating to learn that she was only there to keep Blanca occupied while she had the store boarded up. I’m glad that Blanca didn’t take it lying down, and that Pray made up for sharing his disdain towards Blanca for pushing him to take AZT by rallying an enthusiastic group of supporters to stand by Blanca’s side. The protests featured on this show are really moving, and it’s affirming to see those who don’t agree on everything, like Elektra and Blanca, come together to show up for each other when they need it most.

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