HBO Max’s new limited series, It’s A Sin, is a look at the early days of the AIDS Crisis through the eyes of a group of young gay Londoners and their friends.  The story takes place over the course of ten years, from 1981-1991, skipping a few years between each episode as the epidemic exploded across the community.  

An Incredibly Important Series On The Early Days Of The AIDS Epidemic

The majority of the story follows four main characters, Richie (Olly Alexander), Roscoe (Omari Douglas), Colin (Callum Scott Howells), and Jill (Lydia West).  Richie is a young aspiring actor who moves to London from Isle of Wight to pursue his dreams.  Roscoe comes from a Nigerian family of conservative Christians that have been threatening to send him away to have gay beaten out him. Colin comes to London to work in a suit shop and finds two sides of the coin with an older gay mentor played by Neil Patrick Harris and a predatory closeted boss.  Jill, a childhood friend of Richie’s, becomes the older sister, best friend, and mom to all of them.

Russel T. Davies (Queer As Folk, Doctor Who) is masterful with his depiction of what it is to be young, gay, and free for the first time.  His balance of joy and pain as we work through this incredibly heavy time in gay history is astounding.  You are going to find yourself smiling through your tears as you watch his well rounded characters build a chosen family.

A Story As Important As Ever

This limited series tells such an important story that is still relevant today.  A story about the stigma of HIV/AIDS, a story about being young and in love with yourself for the first time, and finally a story about navigating your sexuality in your twenties for the first time after hiding through your teens.  But mostly, this series tells us about love, finding a chosen family who will be with you through the best and the worst times of your life, and even in that darkest of times….there is joy.  The only sin I can see here is letting yourself miss such a beautiful piece of cinematic art.

For more on HBO Max, stay tuned to That Hashtag Show.