Pose changed the landscape of television last year, debuting with the largest cast and crew of trans talent in television history, both on and behind the scenes. And it’s proven a game changer for breakout star Indya Moore (purported preferred pronouns they/them/their), who has not only won hearts with their portrayal of vulnerable ballroom beauty “Angel,” but also contracts with IMG, William Morris and Louis Vuitton, and most recently, the cover of Elle magazine.
Now, Moore is joining the ranks of A$AP Rocky, Shawn Mendes and more, making it clear that nothing comes between them and their Calvins in the label’s latest #MYCALVINS underwear campaign.
With the candor Moore has quickly become known for, they chronicle some of the more difficult moments of their pre-fame days in an accompanying Instagram caption, in which they discuss the evils of capitalism (slightly ironic, while posing for a fashion campaign), and the all-too-rare freedom that comes from being finally free of debt—and helping to alleviate that burden for loved ones.
“The reality is though, that [capitalism] is the system- & [alleviating] & freeing people still impacts peoples lives and experiences in tangible ways..” Moore writes. “Regardless, I am so happy to have been able to address the anxiety and weight of debt in my parents life. Seeing my 50 y.o mama with tears in her eyes as she thanked me on the phone. At last, I feel successful. No matter what-I have experienced something I am choosing to define as success.”
We choose to define it as success as well and applaud Indya’s transparency about some of their less-than-ideal years—like stealing from a former foster parent (another debt recently repaid, with interest). It may not be the typical tale worthy of a role model, but the level of desperation and dysfunction the now 24-year-old Moore describes is all too common among trans teens, who are among the most marginalized and endangered among us, often resorting to stealing and sex work just to survive. (To be fair, Moore describes their episode as one fueled by “rage & carelessness.”)
“I hate that it’s a privilege,” Moore says in another post promoting the campaign. “It’s not something that everybody gets to take part in. Freedom is a privilege…For those of us who don’t get to be our full selves: from our full hair, to our full mind, to our full heart; we have to navigate so much fear around losing something for being us.”
With Pride Month swiftly approaching (as well as the return of Pose on June 11), Moore’s words are reminders to stay vigilant in the fight to ensure freedom for all; a fight that continues both on the governmental level and in our communities, with the continued disproportionately high rate of attacks and murders of trans women of color.
They may not be the Calvin Klein underwear model we’d long become accustomed to, but the arrival of Indya Moore (and their fellow castmembers in Pose) offers us all an opportunity to consider what freedom should look like—and it looks pretty good, to us.