Mark Indelicato has praised Hacks for its “nuanced” depiction of the LGBTQ+ experience.

The HBO Max series, which returned for a second season on 12 May, has been continuously met with critical acclaim for its authentic queer representation – particularly with Hannah Einbinder’s leading bisexual character Ava Daniels, for which she was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award.

In the brand new issue of GAY TIMES, Indelicato says the show’s overwhelmingly positive reception, particularly with LGBTQ+ viewers, is down to the team’s “coincidental or conscientious” decision to cast a variety of queer actors.

As well as Einbinder and the Ugly Betty alum, Hacks also includes openly queer entertainers such as Meg Stalter, Poppy Liu, Carl Clemons-Hopkins and Johnny Sibilly.

“I think the majority of the cast is queer and so I think that, whether or not they play queer characters on the show, having queer people around is also why audiences might resonate with it,” says Indelicato, who plays Damien, the personal assistant to Jean Smart’s comedy diva Deborah Vance. 

One of the things that we all found so fantastic about the show is that it deals with bisexuality in a really nuanced way, mainly the generational gap between Debra and Ava, and the ways in which Debra understands sexuality versus Ava’s understanding. Not because Debra’s a bigot, but because she comes from a different generation.

“That is also something that gets explored more deeply in season two. Kudos to the writers for doubling down on having these very intellectual and difficult conversations in a way that’s quite funny.”

Indelicato teases an upcoming scene between Deborah and Ava, in which they have an “illuminating” conversation about the latter’s bisexuality and the “spectrum of sexuality,” adding: “I just love that. I love that it’s a driving force in the narrative of a comedy show.” 

The new season of Hacks follows Deborah and Ava as they workshop new material in small clubs across the country. It picks up immediately after the events of season one, which saw Ava reunite with her mentor after sharing defamatory material about her with an LA production company.

“We go on tour this season, so that is very exciting because Damien is also on tour,” adds Indelicato. “We spend a lot of time on a bus going to different cities, and the chaos and debauchery that ensues… As far as Damien is concerned, I am so happy to do a little bit more this season and more physical comedy.

“You’re going to see more of Damien! I don’t necessarily think that there’s any difference in his disposition. He’s still Damien. I got to be on set more and work with my friends more and that is just a gift.” 

The brand new issue of GAY TIMES also features interviews with Joel Kim Booster and the cast of Fire Island, including Bowen Yang, Margaret Cho, Conrad Ricamora, James Scully and director Andrew Ahn, as well as Big Mouth’s resident lovebug Brandon Kyle Goodman, Legacies star Zane Phillips and the cast of The Wilds.

You can read our full interview with Mark Indelicato via the GAY TIMES app, Apple News+Readly, and Flipster.