“Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” was the Emmy Award-winning series people didn’t know they needed. Originally aired on Bravo during the early 2000’s, the five-season series played into the stereotype about homosexuals being experts on fashion, interior design and culture by having a “Fab Five” give a heteroseuxal man a makeover. Better referred to as “make-better,” the transitions included wardrobe updates, dietary advice and interior design.
Netflix has brought the cheerfully-judgmental Fab Five back to revamp the cringe-worthy lives of their nominated male subjects on the rebooted, condensely titled series “Queer Eye.” The show has replaced the original cast with a new group: Karamo Brown, Antoni Porowski, Bobby Berk, Jonathan Van Ness, and Tan France. They have dedicated themselves to reinvent their subjects by combining all the necessities to provide a successful makeover to give them a new breath of life. While the men gain a huge confidence boost, they also learn how to cook, moisturize and pick a pocket square.
The new, diverse group effectively demonstrates that not all gay men are flamboyant, like grooming expert Van Ness. As noted in The Red & Black magazine, Brown is the first African-American man to be a ‘Queer Eye,’ just like Tan is the first Muslim. According to The New York Times, the transformation from its original cast is a heart-warming hoot. This series’ cast has explosive personalities who often steal the focus from the mission at hand.
Brown, the show’s culture expert, lifts up the subject’s confidence, allowing who they are to shine through. He incorporates everyday culture and religion in order for them to understand how to be the best version of themselves.
Porowski, the series’ nutrition proficient, teaches the subjects that it is just as important to feel good on the inside as it is on the outside. He creates healthy and delicious recipes for the men to make for themselves and their loved ones.
Berk, the interior design connoisseur, remodels parts of the subject’s home so they gain better control of their lives. Whether the subject has six kids or an old recliner chair from the side of the road, Berk makes it work. He takes pieces prior to the transition and restores them into something new, that people can look forward to. With the new remodel, the subjects grow more accepting with themselves and feel more confident to bring friends and significant others home.
Van Ness, the grooming guru, gives the men new haircuts, both on the top of their head and around their face. Van Ness has the biggest personality on the show, and he makes it known that the men should feel their best at all times, especially after he has worked his magic on them.
And France, the fashion professional, pushes the subjects out of their comfort zones to dress in an outfit more tailored to them. Their confidence exudes through their facial expressions each time they see themselves in the mirror.
It’s been 15 years since the original show aired. During that time the U.S. legalized gay marriage, but left the LGBTQ community still searching for continuous recognition. “The original show was about fighting for tolerance; our fight is for acceptance,” said France.
In a world with issues that have become quite controversial, it is refreshing to have a show that reminds us that at the end of the day we are all human and there are more things that bring us together than separate us. The writers and producers came up with a show that is inspiring, hilarious and heartbreaking all at the same time.
The “Queer Eye” reboot has a constant tug on the audience’s heart strings, leaving them begging for more. Netflix has just announced that they have renewed this series for a second season that will debut on April 20.