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Fans of Noah’s Arc are part of a generation that embodies the "iykyk" meme. It was a very specific point in time, the show ran for two seasons from 2005, but many remember it fondly and hold dear.
One of the most popular cast members was Alex, played by Rodney Chester. Alex was an outspoken and outgoing queen who said what was on his mind and told it like it was! He was Noah's best friend and could always be counted on for unconditional support and love.
During Outfest 2021, there was a screening for Noah’s Arc: The Rona Chronicles, a half-hour special that picks up in the middle of the pandemic and was shot in multiple locations using things like Zoom and hazmat suits. The production was one to remember. Wanda Sykes makes a cameo and Lena Waithe introduces. Tituss Burgess also makes a cameo as Alex’s brother. In the special, they tackle All Black Lives Matter as well as just trying to keep it together in the middle of a pandemic.
It was followed by the premiere of Boy Culture: The Series featuring Chester's co-star Darryl Stephens. As co-producer, Chester was on hand to introduce the film. Wearing a fabulous Louis Vuitton face mask, Chester thrilled the audience with just a few short words.
After the screening, PRIDE caught up with Chester for a quick Q&A.
PRIDE: What are up to these days?
Chester: I’m doing a tour of my comedy show! It’s called Sweet Tea Sundays and we’re doing DC, New York, Atlanta, LA and Vegas.
How are you handling things with the pandemic going on?
Well that’s been the hold up, we’re just trying to make sure we’re doing it as safe as possible.
How was it serving as producer on the Noah’s Arc special?
It was great! I was already doing most of the work so Patrick [Ian Polk, Noah’s Arc creator] was like, ‘Rodney, I’m gonna make you a producer because you’re already doing it’. I was finding locations, getting people together and it was very cool.
The scene between you and Tituss [Burgess who played a cameo as Alex’s brother] was very special.
You know what? We did that in one take! We rehearsed two days before and I had never met him-
Oh really! That’s kind of an ongoing joke for him, ‘Were you on Noah’s Arc?’
Yeah, we’d never met, but we only had to do one take and we had it.
How much of you is in Alex and vice versa?
I think Alex is a little more over the top than me, but it was written for me so it has to have a little of me in it. They were always like more, more, more and I was like, really? But when you watch it, it all evens out.
Do you see yourselves doing that again in a few years?
To be honest? It just depends on what’s going on and right now no one has a clue.
A lot of people I knew grew up with Noah’s Arc, it’s a part of the culture. I’m shocked there hasn’t been another series with an all-Black queer cast.
With Noah’s Arc it was all about the right time, the right place, all of that.
I think now is the perfect time for a new thing to emerge, I just wonder who that voice is going to be?
I’ve just been doing other projects so if something happens, I’ll be around.