Pictured: Zuri Adele and Sherry Cola.
Zuri Adele, Sherry Cola, Emma Hunton and Hailie Sahar are among The Advocate's Women of the Year. View the full list from the current issue of the magazine.
Now heading into its third season, Good Trouble, The Fosters’ spin-off that introduced rarely depicted characters including an Asian-American lesbian and a bisexual Latinx man as part of its lead ensemble when it premiered, continues to boldly portray the lives of LGBTQ-identified people and people of color.
What’s more is that several women in the core ensemble identify as part of the LGBTQ community, including Zuri Adele (Malika) and Sherry Cola (Alice), who are both bisexual, and Emma Hunton (Davia), who is pansexual. Pose’s Hailie Sahar (who is trans) plays Jazmin, a recurring character.
Like its parent show before, the Freeform series, about 20-somethings navigating love and career in a hip downtown Los Angeles communal living space, balances humor and heart with the social issues it amplifies. Now nearing the close of its second season, Good Trouble has tackled social issues including gender equality in the workplace, trans workers’ rights, body positivity and fat-shaming, the shooting of an unarmed young Black man by white police officers, and Los Angeles’s severe housing shortage for lower-income people.
And that’s just the beginning! For all of the ground it covers, Good Trouble excavates the intersections of identities authentically in ways that resonate out in the world, and that's in large part due to the diversity of its cast and characters.
“[Alice], a first-generation Asian-American lesbian who is not out to her parents and who is going to bizarre lengths to hide who she — it is a struggle, a roller coaster,” Cola tells The Advocate about her character. “It is such a tender and specific story that I never saw growing up. To be able to portray this character means the world to me.”
In its second season, Good Trouble introduced a love story between Alice and Joey (Daisy Eagan, a Tony winner for The Secret Garden), who came out as nonbinary. The storyline dovetailed with Eagan’s journey of coming out as nonbinary.
Meanwhile, Hunton — who’s appeared on Broadway in Spring Awakening, as Elphaba in the first national tour of Wicked, and as Natalie in the first national tour of Next to Normal — plays Davia, a teacher and a body-positive influencer. While Davia has not articulated an identity under the LGBTQ umbrella, Hunton is expressing her identity out in the world through her work. Over the past year, she's directed musical parodies of A League of Their Own and Never Been Kissed at Los Angeles's Rockwell Table and Stage, in which she reclaims the narrative a little for queer people who never saw themselves in those films.
Emma Hunton via Getty
Sahar’s Jazmin, whose brother Gael (Tommy Martinez) was groundbreaking as a bisexual Latinx character, has appeared in a handful of episodes. One storyline of Jazmin’s took on workplace discrimination that trans people face. Another storyline involved Gael throwing a “Doble Quinceañera” for his sister, whose family shunned her and who wasn’t afforded a quinceañera as a teen.
Hailie Sahar via Getty
Adele’s character Malika, a Black Lives Matter activist, has thus far dated only men on the series, but Adele has spoken to The Advocate about why it’s important to amplify her queer identity.
“I'm so proud to be a part of the LGBTQ-plus community and I know that with this platform that I have, it's really important to make sure that all of my intersectionality is represented, because that's the one part. You can see that I'm a woman, you can see that I'm Black, but you can't necessarily see that I'm queer."