Last week I finished watching Netflix’s most recent series ‘Pose’ – a captivating, unique, and thought-provoking creation that really moved me to my core and left me under a great impression. It revealed the theme of sexuality in a new perspective; teaching about STDs and Transgendered peoples struggles as women on a day-to-day basis!
The show left me absolutely speechless! Not only is it educational but also very straight-forward, bluntly honest, and eyeopening! But let me not get ahead of myself, and tell you exactly what I found so fascinating about it first!
In order to not spoil the musical for those, who haven’t watched it yet, I’ll skip writing a detailed summary. Instead, I’ll let you discover it for yourself through its trailers, whilst I focus on discussing the key themes that are spoken about in-depth, throughout its episodes.
LGBTQ, dance culture, family relationships, and societal injustice, due to the lack of gender fluidity, are the main themes in ‘Pose’. What is especially interesting and fascinating about ‘Pose’ is that in addition to all these commonly discussed themes, it also explores the conditions of HIV and AIDS, and teaches the audience about the Transgender culture and the challenges that they face. These are two particular elements that make the series so phenomenal and most importantly, different from anything I’ve ever watched before! It uncovers a facet that in my opinion, is never spoken about in enough detail!
How much do you actually know about HIV and AIDS?
Whatever your answer was, I bet you don’t know as much, as you will, once you finish watching ‘Pose’.
The series introduces both HIV and AIDS and delves into their origins. It clarifies the differences between the two, portrays the struggles of families that have come face to face with the disease, shows the medicinal progress for developing treatments for these conditions, and finally, shows how easily these conditions can be avoided… After all, it always comes down to safe sex practices!
As for me, ‘Pose’ became an eyeopener like no other series!
Now, having watched ‘Pose’, I truly believe that both HIV and AIDS definitely belong to the list of the most dangerous and terminal illnesses, because I finally have an understanding of them! The main thing I learnt from the series is the difference between the two conditions: HIV is an ‘undetectable’ virus (I prefer to refer to it as ‘dormant’), which can progress into AIDS (aka stage 3 HIV) in 8-10 years.
In its turn, AIDS is very likely to trigger cancer development, making itself a killer-illness, and even more lethal than cancer! This knowledge definitely changed the way I think about HIV and AIDS, as currently, not only do I know that these conditions are life-threatening, but I am also aware that they act as catalysts for a range of other health-complications that become incurable.
And so, I keep thinking: how is it that we have not been properly educated on such important conditions?
I also found while watching that the real lived in experience of trans women is difficult to even imagine, as I personally had no idea they went through so much; Judged, criticised, and discriminated against; many trans-women find it so challenging to survive, and yet, their experience are not amplified as they should.
Limited by prejudices, they often find it very hard to be treated as equals at work and make a name for themselves in the professional industry. Some preconceived notions results in many choosing lives that they wouldn’t necessarily settle for. For instance, many trans-women on the show are made to prostitution from being misunderstood. ‘Pose’ uncovers the daily struggles of black trans-females; It shows shocking truths about their lives not only as black women, but as black Transgender women and the lengths they are forced to go to!
Also, ‘Pose’ allows us to observe the main characters get rejected by their families, due to their identities! It is truly upsetting to see how people can become treated so differently for just existing! But that’s why ‘Pose’ is necessary to learn, understand and sympathise with people who radically choose to exist, despite the constraints of the societies that they belong to.
Today, we watch Netflix releases one after another, despite their similarities and predictabilities. Let’s pause to think about some of the common things that we learn from them all: love, sacrifice, addiction, and sexuality.
It seems that every possible aspect of these themes has already been touched upon and that there’s nothing else you could potentially learn from them. But if that was really so, then, why do we still watch LGBTQ films or programmes that never talk about the ‘T’ (transgender)? Why do we binge on sex-related series’ that never talk about STDs, as a consequence of unprotected sex? Basically, why are there obvious things that movies miss out on and we don’t even notice?
I don’t know about you, but lately, I always discover a new film-release or series with a ‘Been there, done that!’ attitude; watching them purely for the sake of biding my time, rather than intending to become emotionally invested in them. ‘Pose’ changed that for me!
‘Pose’ is essentially an all-time must-watch, but right now it is even more vital than ever because what needs to be emphasized is that in today’s changing society learning to be supportive of everyone’s choices is key to mental evolution! That includes understanding theTrans-Community! And that’s when ‘Pose’ comes to save the day, as I’ve never come across a TV-show that affirms it better!