It’s the last Saturday of spring vacation and I’m sitting on the couch in our TV room with my father and his girlfriend. The three of us are grinning as we watch the reaction of the first episode of The Queer Eye. A heartwarming moment for all who watched was the transformation and reveal of Tom’s newly redone apartment, the individual highlighted in the pilot.
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The Queer Eye has many of these special moments, at least one per episode. The newly remade show was released on Netflix at the beginning of February and since then it has become one of the most talked about shows to date.
The original Queer Eye for the Straight Guy first aired on Bravo back in 2003. The reality show centers around the idea of the straight man getting a makeover in fashion, grooming, food, décor, and culture by five gay or queer men. The makeover masters are referred to as the “Fab Five” with each member being an expert in their field.
The Original Fab Five was comprised of Ted Allen who focused on Food/Wine, Kyan Douglas for grooming, Thom Filicia for interior design, Carson Kressley for fashion, and Jai Rodriguez for culture.
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The new Queer Eye features the talent of Antoni Porowski for food/wine, Jonathan Van Ness for grooming, Bobby Berk for design, Tan France for fashion, and Karamo Brown for culture.
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The show was surprisingly successful back in 2003 and fans were crushed when it was canceled in 2006 after a five-season run. The original Queer Eye peaked in its first season with 3.34 million viewers per episode. It was in 2006 that the show’s name was shortened to just The Queer Eye in order to include everyone of any background or sexuality.
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Although I haven’t watched the original cast, I have no doubt that they are just as hilarious and entertaining to watch as the new one. There is a short video that actually features the two casts meeting up and talking about The Queer Eye. The original cast shared the sentiment of their surprise at how much the show impacted gay, straight, and queer people. They had no idea it would have the impact that it did.
The new members were quick to add how much they had learned from the original show and how excited they were to be a part of the new one. The new cast was also very eager to share their excitement over the reboot’s introduction of more diversity. The inclusion of black man, Karamo Brown, and Muslim, Tan France, as cast members suddenly opened up the franchise to new cultures and ethnicities that weren’t always present in the original. It’s exciting that the show has grown over time and has been re-introduced in a way that makes it modern and still extremely relevant.
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The rebooted show has become a favorite of many. The excitable, chant-loving, nickname-giving, Jonathan Van Ness, keeps the contestants laughing while Karamo Brown calms them down when any sudden changes seem overwhelming. Each of the Fab Five plays off one another, commenting how one’s changes in a certain area will affect another. The whole show is unified by the communication between characters and the integration of their skills.
The Queer Eye reboot is now streaming on Netflix and is a great show for anyone in the mood to laugh, cry, or feel happy. The cast is so charismatic and I’m sure that they make the original members proud.
Cover Photo Credit: Queer