Ryan Murphy's Netflix series "flaunts its progressive signifiers, but its sexual politics are deeply conservative," says Daniel Schroeder. "Though The Politician plays with the signifiers of progressivism—queer, nonbinary, and trans people abound—it continues to push the idea that the winners are the ones who repress or hide these politically unmarketable traits in order to gain power," he adds. "The Politician wants to be in conversation with other works of queer television like Insatiable and Heathers, but it never has the same confidence in its own queer future. Unlike in those series, there’s no celebration of queerness, and the gay isn’t empowering. It’s something meant to be kept private, out of the public eye. There’s no moment (Ben Platt's) Payton considers that his sexuality might be an asset instead of a liability, no understanding of the political reality he’s coming up in where queerness is increasingly acceptable, even in a presidential candidate. Sure, Payton’s campaign ticks some boxes—his running mate is black, queer, and nonbinary—but that’s just to fill the quota. They take up the nonstandard part of his ticket so he can be the unblemished straight white savior he’s always envisioned himself as."