People On Twitter Are Asking Where All The Trans Actors Are In This Year’s Emmy Noms

Earlier today, the 2020 Emmy nominations were announced. 

The good news? Our queen Zendaya is nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her performance as Rue in HBO’s Euphoria—in a category sandwiched between cinematic legends Jenifer Anniston, Olivia Coleman, Jodie Comer, Sandra Oh and Laura Linney. Our fave Irishman and Phoebe Bridgers’s current man crush, Paul Mescal, is nominated for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his work as Connell in Normal People. And, Schitt’s Creek and The Good Place fans are eating good (and rightly so, may I add) after the final season of their respective shows were nominated for a number of awards in practically every category possible. 

*Ahem*, they are: Catherine O’Hara, Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series; Eugene Levy, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series; Ted Danson, Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series; D’Arcy Carden, Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series; Annie Murphy, Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series; Dan Levy, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series; and William Jackson Harper, Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series.

But here’s the thing. Throughout all of these awards, not a single trans person was nominated. Which, as several people on Twitter are calling the academy out for, is particularly alarming when Pose was nominated for several awards (including one for MetGala champion Bill Porter) but not one for its mostly female Black trans cast. 

Pose, if you weren’t aware, is a TV series about New York’s African-American and Latinx ballroom scene in the 1980s and 1990s. It follows Blanca (MJ Rodriguez), a ball legend who starts her own ballroom house and turns mother to a gifted dancer (Dominique Jackson) and sex worker (Indya Moore). It’s a trailblazer of a series, gives an important voice to Black trans women during a time when their voices feel silenced politically and they’re faced with systemic oppression. And, it kinda inspired HBO to produce its own vogue competition series so, yeah, it’s a pretty big deal

So, why are Rodriguez, Jackson and Moore being snubbed? Euphoria’s own Hunter Schafer, also trans, was completely snubbed despite her co-star and on-screen love interest being nominated, and, like Jacob Elordi, pulling off some incredible performances. 

Watch this clip and tell me why Jackson wasn’t nominated for her performance in this scene alone. Make it make sense.

And, it’s not just the fans that are upset, the Pose stars say they’re “so tired” of it. 

“Ultimately, I need you to understand that I am so tired,” Pose star Angelica Ross said in an Instagram Live about the news. “Because those of you that know me know that I’m not just working in front of the screen or behind the lens or whatever.”

“I’m working around the clock to get our society to value trans lives and Black trans lives. And listen, I feel what I feel because I feel like there is nothing we can do.” 

“Okay, real talk… what does MJ Rodriguez have to do—aside from baring her heart and pouring her soul into every damn scene—to get a Best Actress nomination,” added Pose co-creator Steven Canals. 

And, even if it’s as Indya Moore sees it—that, ultimately, they’re “not dependent on CIS people to validate anything about us”—it still sucks to see these three women’s performances and other trans women snubbed from their industry’s most established and prestigious award show.

Julian Rizzo-Smith is a writer and producer. He also claims to be a vine historian, avid connoisseur of low-fi beats, indie hip hop and Kermit memes. In a perfect world, he’d be married to Tyler the Creator, own an Arcanine and a Lapras, and don his own Sailor Scouts uniform. He tweets @GayWeebDisaster, which is also, coincidentally, how one might describe him.