Spoilers ahead for It’s a Sin
In the second episode of HBO Max’s new miniseries It’s a Sin, Jill Baxter (Lydia West) begins taking care of Gregory “Gloria” Finch (David Carlyle), a friend of the Pink Palace posse who reveals he is sick with AIDS.
While telling Jill about the disease, Gregory mentions a story about a Chicago production of the classic musical Seven Brides for Seven Brothers where all the actors playing the seven brothers allegedly died of AIDS. It’s one of those urban legends that sounds so ludicrous that it could actually end up being true.
Speaking to NewNowNext, It’s a Sin writer-creator Russell T. Davies says he isn’t even sure if the Seven Brides for Seven Brothers story actually happened.
“It’s interesting because in some ways, that’s where the entire show [It’s a Sin] comes from,” Davies reveals. “I heard that story in 1989, 1988. I finally went to look it up. And if you search Seven Brides for Seven Brothers all day, you don’t get very far.”
“I suspect it’s an urban myth,” he adds. “But I was told it in all seriousness way back in the ’80s. It’s one of the things that made me write the show. It made me think, ’Gosh, imagine if we had a bunch of people who are all together, and they all started to die out one by one.’ So actually, the musical becomes the flat [the Pink Palace]. That’s why I put that anecdote in because the germ of the whole show was in there.”
Viewers also get a dirty joke out of it, which is “far more important,” Davies quips.
It’s a Sinis out now on HBO Max.