Queer as Folk began in the UK as an 8-part series and quickly became a international phenomenon. In 2000, soon after the 1999 UK premiere, US-based network Showtime
broke the barriers of cable television by launching an American remake about the lives of a group of gay and lesbian
friends and their families.
Set in Pittsburgh, PA (but actually filmed in Toronto), Queer as Folk set a new bar for shock factor with its graphic gay sex scenes and insight into the lives of gay men and women- a perspective in which many heterosexuals were not accustomed to seeing on television. Some viewers believe the content of the show had a positive influence on how others view queers. "Some of my straight friends enjoyed it. To them it was just another program about relationships. Nothing more, nothing less. We identified with each character in a way that depicts our own lifestyle. All it came down to was people wanting love in their lives"
Others disagree, heavily criticizing the show for its stereotypical portrayal of gay men, lack of diversity and graphic scenes. One viewer states, "When it wasn't stereotyping every gay man back to the stone age, its story lines were unbelievable and shallow." Citing Queer as Folk's lack of diversity, another viewer wondered, "where the gay people of color were in the series."
But just as with any other story line about a specific group of friends, be it based on ethnicity or gender, a Gay Life forum
user warns against expectations beyond Showtime's original intentions. "For anyone who says that [Queer as Folk] doesn't represent all gay people, does it have to? It focuses on those who go out to the clubs - that's just the program, it never says that all gay men are the same." See the show and decide for yourself in its fifth and final season on Showtime.
Queer as Folk Poll
Queer as Folk's ending, good intentions or good riddance
The Cast of Queer as Folk
Read the celebrity profiles of the Queer as Folk cast
and see what Showtime has to say about their sexuality!
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