Queer As Folk Is Back And Ready To Grapple With Modern LGBTQ Issues

The disco thump of Babylon returns to a more diverse world in the first trailer for US streaming service Peacock’s hotly anticipated reimagining of the landmark series Queer As Folk.

The new series follows a group of LGBTQ friends in New Orleans whose livelihoods are thrown into disarray following a tragedy that recalls the 2016 Pulse nightclub massacre. Based on the early footage, there are also compelling storylines involving politics and parenthood, not to mention plenty of sex.

Actors Fin Argus, CG, Jesse James Keitel, Ryan O’Connell, Johnny Sibilly and Devin Way are among the series regulars. The starry recurring cast includes Kim Cattrall, Lukas Gage, Juliette Lewis and Megan Stalter.

Created by Russell T. Davies, the original Queer As Folk premiered on Channel 4 in the UK in 1999 and followed three gay men in Manchester.

A US series based on the British iteration premiered a year later, with the acting moving to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and ran for five seasons.

Ryan O'Connell (left) and Johnny Sibilly star in Queer as Folk
Ryan O’Connell (left) and Johnny Sibilly star in Queer as Folk

Viewers are likely more familiar with the American series, which starred Gale Harold and Randy Harrison. The new Queer as Folk, however, is believed to be more in line with the British original.

And much like the Sex and the City revival And Just Like That…, the new series appears to have greatly diversified its storytelling, adding more actors of colour, as well as transgender and gender nonconforming people, into the mix.

In an emailed statement, Russell T Davies described the 2022 iteration of Queer As Folk as “more diverse, more wild, more free, more angry ― everything a queer show should be”.

“I’m very proud of what we achieved in 1999, but in queer years, that was a millennium ago,” explained Russell, who serves as an executive producer on the reboot. “As a community, we’ve radicalized, explored, opened up, and found new worlds – with new enemies and new allies – and there was so much to be said.”

Writer and director Stephen Dunn feels similarly and said he hopes to depict “an electric ensemble of fresh characters that mirror the modern global audience”.

“If there’s one person who is able to see Queer As Folk and feel less alone, or who now feels more supported and seen, our job is done,” he added. “In the true spirit of the original, our show doesn’t shy away from the harsh realities of our community, but above all else, the series is about people who live vibrant, vital, unapologetically queer lives.”

Queer As Folk debuts on Peacock in the US on 9 June, and will be available to stream via Starzplay in the UK from 1 July, with two new episodes airing each week.

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