Ball culture’s contributions to society are myriad and endless. It’s been a lifesaver and a sense of family to countless queer people of color, and especially to trans women of color. It’s also brought numerous turns of phrase and twists of the body into the mainstream, from voguing to the term “realness” (as in “executive realness”), to the phrase “tens, tens, tens across the board.” All of that is captured in HBO Max’s new reality competition series Legendary, which pits storied ballroom houses and families against each other, all in search of $100,000 in prize money.
The show is full of legendary figures in the ballroom world, from judge Leiomy Maldonado to host and MC Dashaun Wesley, who’s an amazing voguer in his own right. The A.V. Club talked to Wesley about what viewers can expect from the show, and how the team worked to make sure it did service to the culture and the community it represents.