08th Jun2020

‘Queer Eye: Season 5’ Review (Netflix Original)

by Rhys Payne

I can safely say I have been eagerly awaiting another season of Queer Eye for the longest time  – I really enjoy the  combination of the amazing fab five with the inspiring and emotional nature of the heroes they bring in the show. This latest season did not disappoint and kept within the format everyone knows a loves with a few exciting changes!

If you have never watched Queer Eye before, this is a show that make-overs and transforms the lives of people who need it most. Each member of the fab five are specialists in certain areas and they each take time to use their skills to help and educate the guests to improve their lives in one way or another, while still being entertaining. It has been well documented that each member of the fab five were brought in for their skills and never had met each other before the first season of this show started but their friendship and chemistry is clear to see which makes for an even more enjoyable watch.

In terms of format, Queer Eye is your classic makeover show with areas such as self-care, interior design and food schedules being shone a light on as these are some of the fan fives specialists but with the recipients of the make-overs being inspirational in one way or another. Having someone who has been through some sort of struggle makes the audience really fall in love with the guests and leads to some VERY heartwarming TV.

This new season opens with a fun montage of the fab five setting up their new headquarters in Philadelphia. This was very entertaining but the only issue I had with it was that in this montage they were fitting barbers chairs into the building which means many people would believe that all the hairstyling would be done in their headquarters but this was not true. Some viewers may think this is somewhat misleading and confusing. The transitions in Queer Eye involve the fab five dress in some sort of costume that is clearly a reference to the new location in Philadelphia. I think I, among many of the UK viewers, may miss the reason for these outfits due to a lack of knowledge regarding American history. My only other issue with the show is that the show contains strong language – a lot more than it appeared in the other series of this show – which prevents the show from being accessible to all ages; especially as I believe younger people would really appreciate a show like this but the language used does make it somewhat inappropriate for their viewing.

What is very interesting about the fifth season of Queer Eye is that the fab five not only make over the hero’s homes and looks etc., but also they make an effort to improve the businesses they have developed or work for. One particular episode the guest had started her own grooming business and the fab five made a massive effort to produce her new branding, mobile premises and put on an advertising event. It’s obviously fantastic for the fab five to sort out the guest’s looks etc. but for them to make a real difference to a business would help them live sustainably even after the fab five have left. The episodes then obviously showcase the heroes business but also the show showcases other local businesses that are used to renovate the homes and style hair etc. This can only benefit the all involved and makes for great viewing.

The other episode of this season of Queer Eye that really stands out to me was the first episode – where the fab five work with an openly gay priest. It is clear many of fab five (who are all gay) at first are very uneasy about working in a church, as they have experienced homophobia from the church in their formative years but it is fantastic to see the LGBT community working with the church on TV, as this is a partnership that is not portrayed enough. This is even more relevant right now as we are currently in pride month so showing LGBT viewers that they are accepted and loved by some communities that have historically outcasted them is incredible.

Overall, Queer Eye is show crammed full of heartwarming and emotional moments throughout, while also promoting a range of local businesses which is a great inclusion. The fab five are very entertaining and each tries to educate viewers on their specialist areas. I hope  one day they release a UK version of the show (or the fab five make a trip overseas as they did with their Japan season) as I know many people who deserve a fab five makeover!

****½  4.5/5

Queer Eye is available on Netflix now.


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