By Hannah Stryker

Known for his love of Corgis and avocado toast, “Queer Eye”s Antoni Porowski has recently become a celebrity crush to many. The show, a Netflix original that premiered on the platform in early 2018, is a reboot of “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy.” The reboot came over a decade after the original series ended, with a new “Fab Five” filling the roles of the original actors. Porowski is a Polish-Canadian who has expertise in the food and wine department.

Student Entertainment Events had Porowski come on Feb. 26 to talk about “Queer Eye,” perform a cooking demonstration and have a Q&A with audience members.

During an interview with Porowski, I asked what viewers could expect for season three of the show.

Porowski said, “Inclusivity and diversity continue to be the focal points of the direction we’re headed with the show. For example, being an immigrant is an important story that I wanted to tell.”

In addition to this, he explained there will be a better balance with women to men in the upcoming season; female viewers of the show will be able to look forward to this factor.

“I think that not only men need help, but everyone does,” he said.

When questioned what keeps him busy when he is not filming, he said, “A lot of things. I have a restaurant in New York that I’m working on, and we’re working on developing more locations throughout the city. I have a cookbook that’s coming out in the fall which is finally done. Basically we filmed during the day, and at night I would work on the book.”

He also mentioned that during downtime from filming seasons one and two, he picked up Italian. In addition to this, he said he hopes to learn to rest more and to take more time off for himself.

My following question was, “What gave you the idea to make Village Den, your restaurant, so inclusive for people with different diets and allergies?” to which Porowski responded by saying he tends to get uncomfortable when something is too much of one thing.

“I love American culture and those 1950s TV dinners,” he said, “so we created versions of those that are a lot more healthy, whether they are vegan or fish sticks coated in macadamia nut crust.”

To conclude the interview, Porowski also shared advice for University of Maryland students to follow.

“Our directions can change, our passions can change, but this does not make you any less of a student,” he said. “Whatever you are doing, just be passionate about it. Be gentle with yourselves; it’s a stressful frickin’ time. You’re studying your asses off, you have papers due all the time, you’re drinking a shit ton of coffee … you guys are all going through the same thing. Find people who are like your tribe, who only support you, not people who bring you down. Find little moments that you can enjoy; university really is the best time.”  

During the SEE event, Porowski discussed his experiences as a student in college. He attended Concordia University and received a bachelor’s degree in psychology. Porowski also explained different ways to create healthy eating habits in college on a budget. He said heating up peas and canned tuna was a cheap and good way to get nutrition.

To finish the event, Porowski invited a student onto the stage to prepare snacks with him for a demonstration. The two made treats with fennel, pistachio and citrus, and then sprinkled them with tajín, a Mexican spice.

“Antoni was so sweet,” freshman journalism major Charlotte Crook said. “He really connected with the audience and created a comfortable atmosphere. Whether the conversation was serious or funny, he was so sincere and everyone was engaged.”

Porowski also talked about his fellow Queer Eye cast members and the tight-knit bond that they have. He said the cast members have their ups and downs together, but they have become his family.

“I love Queer Eye because it is one of the first shows I ever watched with my mom that involved LGBTQ+ representation,” freshman communication and government and politics major Malaika Mosele said. “She had some misconceptions of the community, but she is now more informed and loves the show.”

Season three of Queer Eye will be released on Netflix March 15.

Responses have been lightly edited for length and clarity.

Featured Photo Credit: Courtesy of Antoni Porowski’s Facebook page.

Hannah Stryker is a freshman journalism major and can be reached at hannahstryker70@gmail.com.

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