This article was published on March 22nd, 2021
After premiering to raucous applause, winning over critics, and becoming an instant classic, the producers of Pose recently announced the series will be ending after its abbreviated upcoming third season. Rumors about cancellation had been circling for weeks now and FX confirmed that the drama that followed New York’s ball culture during the 1980s will premiere on May 2nd and wrap up the storyline. In a statement, co-creator Ryan Murphy referred to Pose as one of the highlights of his storied career, saying that the show would “go down in history for having the largest LGBTQ cast of all time.”
Pose did not just feature a plethora of queer actors, but it also told a story that has often gone untold and raised the profile of the LGBTQ+ community on primetime television with stories that centered around HIV/AIDS, the transgender community, and the underground gay scene during one of the most turbulent times in American history. The Peabody and Emmy Award-winning show heads into season 3 with much fervor but an abbreviated season: fans can expect seven episodes this year, with the series finale airing on June 6th.
Although the show made headlines in quick succession, many fans are shocked that the popular show is coming to an end; some are blaming Murphy’s rapidly expanding workload as one of the main reasons for Pose folding. As one of his last shows on regular network television, Murphy is now all in at Netflix, where he signed one of the largest overall deals in the history of the company.
His co-creator on Pose, Steven Canals, will remain at Disney and recently signed a deal at 20th Television. He is currently already working on another series for FX that centers on the queer community. Janet Mock, one of the executive producers and directors of Pose, has also signed an overall deal at Netflix. Canals released a statement of his own about the series ending and what impact the show had on the community:
“‘Write the TV show you want to watch! At the time we weren’t seeing very many Black and Latinx characters — that happened to also be LGBTQ+ — populating screens. And so I wrote the first draft of a pilot the ‘younger me’ deserved. Pose was conceived as a love letter to the underground New York ballroom community, to my beloved New York, to my queer and trans family, to myself. I, along with my incredible collaborators, never intended on changing the TV landscape. I simply wanted to tell an honest story about family, resilience and love. How fortunate am I to have done that for three seasons. I’m filled with gratitude to our intrepid writers, cast, crew and producers who worked tirelessly to make Pose come to life, humbled by our loyal audience, thankful to the ballroom community who trusted us to tell their story, overwhelmed by the critics who warmly embraced us, and forever indebted to Ryan Murphy, FX and 20th Television for changing my life.”
The Presence and Presents of Pose
There are few television shows that manage the impact Pose has had in only a few seasons, and the drama made history for its portrayal of queer life, and in particular trans artists both in front of and behind the camera. Its lead, Billy Porter, became the first openly gay man to win an Emmy for lead actor, and Janet Mock became the first transgender woman of color hired as a writer on a series and also as a director. To date, Pose features the largest recurring cast of LGBTQ+ actors on scripted television. The series stars Rodriguez, Porter, Dominique Jackson, Indya Moore, Hailie Sahar, Dyllón Burnside, Angel Bismark Curiel, Sandra Bernhard and Jason A. Rodriguez.
What to Expect in Season Three
Heading into season three, Pose will do a time leap from 1991 to 1994, where viewers will see the remnants of the ballroom scene as Blanca struggles to maintain a balancing act as a mother and when love enters her life. Meanwhile, Pray Tell will face health struggles as AIDS becomes the leading cause of death for American men in his age bracket. Elsewhere, a new upstart house threatens to overtake House of Evangelista as they fight to preserve their legacy.
Fans have lots to look forward to, but HomoCulture wants to know – how do you feel about Pose ending after three seasons? Is it just enough or too soon? Sound off in the comments below!