It’s all over your social media: Queer Eye. Everyone is talking about it, and up til a few days ago, I had no idea what it was.
The show surrounds five gay men are on a mission to improve the appearance of people all over Georgia. Subjects on the production are equipped with a new wardrobe, hairstyle, home decor, and most importantly an improved self-image and renewed confidence.
Originally titled “Queer Eye For the Straight Guy,” the show first premiered on Bravo in 2003 and featured a cast of five men known as the “Fab Five,” each having a different role in making over a straight man. While the show was an immediate hit, even winning the Emmy for outstanding reality program in 2004, its last episode aired in October 30th, 2007.
While the Emmy winning cast has been retired, a fresh and current season of the show was released on Netflix in February utilizing the show’s original vision, but executing it with a new cast. The First season, still available on Netflix, is comprised of eight episodes in which the new Fab Five makeovers all over the state of Georgia, of different ages, interests, sexual orientations, gender identities, and circumstances. With the release of its second season this June, Queer Eye has become a binge-worthy must-watch production listed on Netflix’s “trending now.”
When my girlfriend first put on the show I was skeptical to watch as I was misled to believe it was all about fashion and home decoration. However, the episode began to resonate with me when I saw the impact that the makeover had on the contestant’s outlook on their life. Contrary to popular belief, the makeovers that these men give, really have the greatest significance on their subjects’ heart and core.
“Queer Eye wants to wrap Black Lives Matter, toxic masculinity, self-care, prejudice, and how to choose a good patterned shirt all inside the safe, affirming cover of a reality-TV makeover series.” – Kathryn VanArendonk, Vulture
Each episode has its own unique message and story that it presents, all able to resonate and impact audiences on a broad scale, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, etc. Here were some of our staff’s (Greg and Mason) personal highlights.
- Episode 1 deals with Tom, a divorced 57-year-old from Georgia. While watching, we found ourselves stereotyping when we were concerned with the possible bigotry that Tom and his fellow white southern friends could possibly exhibit. Instead, the Fab Five were only met with praise and love from the joyful Georgia man, and likely did their best makeover to date.
- Episode 3 surrounds Cory, a 36-year-old former Marine and current police officer. Karamo — the one black member of the Fab Five — has a sincere and honest conversation with Cory as they discuss the current culture and relationship between Americans of color and police officers. The empathy and understanding they display for one another is something that should be shown to every American.
- Episode 8 takes a different angle by doing a personal makeover for veteran firefighter, Jeremy, but also redoing the interior of his outdated fire station. The Fab Five grow a close relationship with the firefighters at Jeremy’s station and sets them up with an amazing new fire station to prove the Fab Five’s gratitude to the men and women who put their lives on the line for the safety of others.
What makes Queer Eye so entertaining is not the clothing and home decor that the Fab Five give to subjects, but rather the effects the makeover has on their psyche, and how the show discusses the problems and concerns we deal with as individuals everyday.
Queer Eye is a Netflix series you should watch because of the bigger themes that are presented through the kind-hearted makeovers of their subjects. The positive lessons and themes these men preach each episode can impact and improve the lives of audiences across all demographics.