‘And Just Like That’ Star Sara Ramirez Discusses The Importance Of LGBTQIA+ Storytelling


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With the much-anticipated second season of And Just Like That arriving on Max, audiences will get another peek into the life of the non-binary bisexual character Che Diaz, as they continue to navigate through the world of career aspirations, society pressures and romance. For Sara Ramirez, who also uses they/them pronouns, they remain dedicated to ensuring that the on-screen storytelling ahead for Che reflects an authentic representation of the real world’s LGBTQIA+ community.

When season two begins, rising stand-up comedian Che is now living in Los Angeles to film a new sitcom pilot, while continuing their relationship with Miranda Hobbs (played by Cynthia Nixon). Early on this season, Che is faced with multiple creative demands from their sitcom boss that do not feel in-line with who Che is and the overall message that they want to share with the world.

“In season one, we see a Che that’s very confident – is very almost performance-driven. And in season two, we open it up. We make sure that they confront systems like Hollywood that trigger old life lessons for them. We reveal that they are not above their own conditioning and we don’t shy away from that tender, vulnerable stuff that is so universal for so many of us. I was really glad and grateful when [And Just Like That showrunner/writer/director] Michael Patrick King and I spoke before we even started season two about ways we could kind of challenge Che a little bit in season two, and see how Che would respond to various situations. I’m really glad because LGBTQIA+ people shouldn’t have to be perfect or likable for us to root for their humanity.”

This month not only marks the return of And Just Like That, but it also marks 25 years of Sex and the City, the HBO series that ran from 1998 to 2004, followed by two major motion pictures in 2008 and 2010, before the And Just Like That new chapter premiered in 2021. So, as this fictional universe continues to expand with longtime characters Carrie Bradshaw, Miranda Hobbs and Charlotte York-Goldenblatt, as well as recently introduced characters like Che Diaz, I wondered why Ramirez believes these storylines continue to captivate audiences of many generations.

“Well, I think the show has really great structure to its writing. I think the way that it kind of presents life as this hilarious and heartbreaking event. Just when you think you’ve got a win, you get a pie in the face two seconds later. There’s so much irony in life – and so, everybody experiences a little bit of ‘ego death’ along the way. That’s sort of what makes it so special and relatable.”

Ramirez added, “I think that the things that aren’t as relatable, meaning very hyper-privileged universe that a lot of these people exist in also draws us in because we get to have our escapism. We get to have our shows where we get wrapped up in the fashion that none of us can afford. We get to be wrapped up in New York City in ways that none of us may experience, but we get to experience it through Carrie or Miranda or Charlotte and now LTW, now Seema, Dr. Wallace – Nya. We get to now experience it through a more inclusive universe, albeit a privileged one but the storytelling is it. The actors are so fantastic on the show, and the characters, we’re diving deeper into them in season two, so we’re giving people even more reason to get invested this time around.”

Speaking of storytelling, major news lately has been the Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike continuing on without an agreement yet between them and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producer (AMPTP). The Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) recently voted 97.91% in favor of authorizing their own strike, if negotiations are unsuccessful in the coming weeks. So, I asked Ramirez what their thoughts are on the current happenings surrounding the entertainment industry, and if they believe resolution is possible.

Ramirez said, “I really hope that resolution is possible. I’m really rooting for a resolution. It’s really important that we stand in solidarity, that we move in solidarity with the WGA. So, as a member of SAG, I absolutely am in solidarity. I hope that the directors union will follow, but we really want this resolved as quickly as possible. These shows wouldn’t be anything without writers, and it’s really sort of terrifying that AI is something that producers are even considering using to replace writers, actors, directors – just about anyone working on a show. These are really important issues and this is a very, very important time to be standing up for these rights. It’s possibly the last time we’ll be able to stand up for these rights without completing losing the entertainment industry to computer-generated stories.”

Regarding their experiences on the set of And Just Like That, Ramirez praises the “amazing crew of people,” adding that it takes an entire village to put this Max series together and that making each other laugh on-set has been really important during long shooting days. Ramirez also expressed gratitude for the respectful And Just Like That work environment that has created a space where everyone is affirmed.

“Having a production team that is not afraid to say to everybody If somebody’s pronouns are they/them, you need to use them. So, I think it’s also about creating environments that support us when we’re off-camera, as well as on-camera, and that is something that I was able to ask for that I got in return, which was really nice.”

As I began to conclude my conversation with Ramirez, I wondered what they would say to their character Che Diaz, after embodying everything that they are on-screen in And Just Like That.

“That’s an interesting question,” Ramirez said. “I think that where Che ends up at the end of season two is really kind of questioning what their purpose is anymore, whether they should go back to comedy or not, who is the right person for them. There’s a huge question mark around Che’s future, and I think the best thing they could do is connect with community and try to find some like-minded folks to continue to grow themselves with, so that whoever they grow into next is a continuation of this authentic journey that they’ve had.”

Regarding their ongoing hopes and efforts in real-life, Ramirez added, “I just want to lift up our queer, trans and non-binary community that is really going through it right now. We have so many states in this country that are trying to legislate us out of existence, so my hope is that when we get passionate and interested and invested in talking about characters like Che Diaz, we also get passionate and invested and interested in real-life queer, trans and non-binary people, and their health and well-being – their access to their rights.”

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Lisa Holden
Lisa Holden
Lisa Holden is a news writer for LinkDaddy News. She writes health, sport, tech, and more. Some of her favorite topics include the latest trends in fitness and wellness, the best ways to use technology to improve your life, and the latest developments in medical research.

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