Façades

The Web Series

Episode One: Pilot

EPISODE Two: "Ya Got pluck"

EPISODE Three: "it really is everywhere"

EPISODE FOUR: "STARRY DUSTSTORMZ"

EPISODE FIVE: "GODDESS, QUEENS, AND STARS"

EPISODE SIX: "DIFFERENT WORLDS"

EPISODE SEVEN: "FLY"

“I am so sick of people refusing to see me the way I want them to,”

“Well, how do you see yourself?”

So begins your typical boy-meets-they love story. 

It’s the unlikely relationship between Phinn and Rhys, the two central characters in the new web series, “Façades.” Phinn (AKA Fantasia Fabulous, played by Russell Peck) is a talented drag performer who wants nothing more than to compete on the hit reality TV show, “Continental’s Newest High Fashion Model.” But Phinn’s ideas of femininity are limited by stereotypes and unrealistic expectations. He soon meets Rhys, a male-assigned-at-birth, gender nonconforming individual (played by Maybe Burke) who is beginning their own journey of accepting and expressing their gender. Their relationship soon becomes complicated however, as they each struggle to define what gender means to them. Will Phinn be able to let down his walls and push beyond the most surface-level ideas of gender? Will Rhys be able to comfortably express their nonbinary identity, in a world where the definitions of ‘man’ and ‘woman’ are “horrifyingly narrow?”

The relationship between Rhys and Phinn is intercut with episodes of the very campy “Continental’s Newest High Fashion Model.” Contestants on the show, led by the ever-glamorous Tiara Anderson-Anderson (Raquel Nicole Jeté), must compete in various challenges that force them to define what their own sense of femininity means to them. This raucously funny spoof pokes fun at society’s expectations of ‘what it means to be a woman,’ and provides a deep contrast with the nonbinary musings of Rhys and Phinn.

In creating “Façades,” Ariel Mahler is giving a voice to the historically underrepresented transfeminine and gender nonconforming communities. They hope the series, at times humorous, at times quite serious, will help audience members question their ideas of gender.