EastSiders' Kit Williamson Opens Up on Why Queer Stories Matter

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Kit Williamson

Kit Williamson

Kit Williamson, creator and writer of the dark comedy series EastSiders, sat down with People to talk about the series, why it's important to represent, and his big dreams for the future.

EastSiders premiered as a web series on YouTube in 2012, where it built up a strong following. It eventually landed on Netflix in 2016. Williamson admitted,

We didn't have any expectations going into this when we put it on YouTube back in 2012. We launched the first two episodes and they went viral, which is something we just weren't prepared for.

When asked about his early influences, Williamson commented that theater was always his first love. He latched on to Tennessee Williams and felt a connection to his stories. He also stated that John Cameron Mitchell's Hedwig and the Angry Inch was "very formative" for him.

Williamson hails from Mississippi and grew up in a conservative Christian environment. He reflected,

All I heard was propaganda as a kid that the gay lifestyle was a miserable one that ended in loneliness, heartbreak and disease. That was the only option available to me. Gay people were painted as kind of miserable pariahs without a tribe, without the community.

Luckily, he found the opposite to be true. Williamson's world was opened up by queer characters he watched on television. It helped him realize that all was not lost. Williamson added, 

If I can give back in any small way, if I can do that for other people, if I can reach people in countries where it's illegal or dangerous the way that the show has been doing, then I'm incredibly grateful for that opportunity. I take it really seriously.

So what's next for Williamson? He revealed his big dreams,

I would love to be the gay male Phoebe Waller-Bridge someday, to have a show that I write and star in — like Fleabag —going at the same time as the show, like Killing Eve, that she created. That's just such an amazing double-edged sword that she's wielding, that she can do both of those things.

He said, "The ultimate end goal for me is to be a showrunner."

Williamson thought the article wouldn't make the final cut. He tweeted about the pleasant surprise. Check it out below:

All 27 episodes of the award winning series EastSiders are available on Netflix. You can read the full interview, HERE.