MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter, who play Blanca Evangelista and Pray Tell respectively in the FX show, were nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress and Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series. They, however, both lost out to The Crown’s Olivia Colman and Josh O’Connor.
While Porter won the category back in 2019 for the show’s second season, the snub for Rodriguez was perhaps the biggest upset. This was her first nomination for Pose after three seasons, making history as the first transgender actor to receive a Best Actress nod at the Primetime Emmys.
This made Rodriguez’s loss to Colman particularly devastating for fans. “Colman is great in The Crown but you just kinda felt that MJ Rodriguez was the moment,” one fan wrote on Twitter. “MJ was worthy of a win so why not make history.”
Another wrote: “I am so upset that the #PoseFX team is walking away with nothing so far tonight. MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter deserved the wins, and while The Crown is fine I have no idea why it is sweeping tonight.”
You can check out more reactions below.
I am so upset that the #PoseFX team is walking away with nothing so far tonight. MJ Rodriguez and Billy Porter deserved the wins, and while The Crown is fine I have no idea why it is sweeping tonight. #Emmys
— Jules (@juleswritesblog) September 20, 2021
— MODERNA EVANGELISTA 💉 (@Choc_Royalty93) September 20, 2021
— 🤔 (@Jamaica658) September 20, 2021
I’m genuinely sad that MJ Rodriguez didn’t win especially because she put her whole heart into Pose, she was the heart of Pose but she’s making history as the first trans woman to be nominated for an emmy in a lead acting category and she’s my winner.pic.twitter.com/uuvI9ujUPF
— Bre 🪴 (@honeybres) September 20, 2021
i love olivia coleman but damn. mj rodriguez has been the heart and soul of Pose from the first minute. her performance this last season was incredible and, while awards aren’t everything, i wish she was leaving with that trophy tonight.
— charlie 🍑 (he/him) (@cut_casper) September 20, 2021
POSE losing an Emmy is no surprise to me. They've been doing it since the beginning. Snubbing the cast during season 2 was already a red flag. And MJ Rodriguez not winning? IT'S OVER. #Emmys pic.twitter.com/PxqI07MWI1
— ✨ Sonny ✨ (@SonnnyBoii) September 20, 2021
Pose is celebrated for having the largest transgender cast for a scripted series, starring Rodriguez, Indya Moore, Dominique Jackson, Hailie Sahar and Angelica Ross. The show follows ball culture in 80s New York within the gay and trans community, amid the AIDS crisis.
Created by Steven Canals, Brad Falchuk and Ryan Murphy, the show came to an end with its third season, set in the mid-to-late 1990s.