Sunday’s 69th Emmy television awards saw big wins for several LGBTQ actors, creators, and affirming series.
Out actress writer and producer Lena Waithe, in particular, broke new ground after she, alongside Aziz Ansari, won the Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series award for an episode of the Netflix series Master of None.
This made her the first black woman to win the award in this category.
Waithe’s acclaimed episode, titled Thanksgiving, is partially biographical and depicts a series of Thanksgivings from the 90s to the present, in which the character of Denise deals with her sexuality and coming out to her family.
“My LGBQTIA family, I see each and every one of you,” Waithe told the audience in an inspiring acceptance speech. “The things that make us different, those are our superpowers. Every day when you walk out the door and put on your imaginary cape and go out there and conquer the world because the world would not be as beautiful if we weren’t in it.
“For everybody out there that showed so much love for this episode, thank you for embracing a little Indian boy from South Carolina and a little queer black girl from the south side of Chicago. We appreciate it more than you could ever know,” she said.
Actress and comedian Kate McKinnon, who attended the event with her girlfriend Jackie Abbott, took home the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series.
This was the second year in a row that she was recognised with an Emmy for her work in Saturday Night Live. McKinnon was also among the show’s cast and openly gay co-head writer, Chris Kelly, in winning the Outstanding Variety Sketch Show Emmy.
McKinnon, who was lauded for her portrayal of Hillary Clinton on the show, said that “being part of this season of SNL is the most meaningful thing I will ever do”.
A “queer love story” episode of the British science fiction anthology series Black Mirror, titled San Junipero, was awarded two Emmys: Outstanding Television Movie and Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special.
Set in a resort town in the 1980’s it tells the story of two women who fall in love in a virtual world.
Sadly, one of TV’s gayest show’s RuPaul’s Drag Race failed to win the Outstanding Reality Program, losing out to The Voice.