Universal TV’s brand-new cop drama Deputy follows non-conformist policeman Bill Hollister (Stephen Dorff) on a quest to protect the citizens of Los Angeles. He knowingly refuses to follow the rules, and he’ll do just about anything to catch the bad guys. Anything. He’ll even close a highway and cause a car accident to arrest a bunch of armed gangsters. For Hollister, all it takes to do his job is three things: “The badge, the gun and what is in your heart,” he says with his cowboy hat in his hands in the first episode. And his heart only has room for one passion: keeping the world safe.

When the County Sheriff suddenly dies of a heart attack, Bill is immediately appointed as the acting sheriff of his region, seeing that he is the longest-serving cop. The minute after he takes his oath for his new job, newly elected sheriff Bill fires everyone who has always been against him. Guess who’s large and in charge! While he suffers from first day-nerves, his wife Dr Paula (Yara Martinez) keeps him calm and the minute he walks out of his house he finds his new office driver, Bishop (Bex Taylor-Klaus), waiting for him.

Move over, Bill, because you’re not the only maverick on this show. Bishop is no ordinary chauffeur. They’re one of a rare handful of new TV characters who’re embracing non-binary gender (neither male nor female). So on the show and in this feature, we’ll be using pronouns like “they” and “them” to refer to both Bishop, and the performer who plays them, Bex. Bishop is also an investigator and appointed head of Bill’s security detail. If there’s one thing that’s certain it’s that Bishop won’t let Bill get away with walking over them like he does with everyone else. There’s more to Bishop than meets the eye…

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Standing firm

Bishop left their fulfilling political career in Washington DC to undertake this job in LA. While it’s refreshing to get new scenery, working with Bill is something that Bishop never expected as the two hardly get along. Bex explains, “Bishop and Bill are polar opposites. Bill doesn’t care about the rules. Bishop on the other hand follows protocols. They butt heads all the time. They’re going to have to compromise to keep the peace,” adds the 25-year-old performer.


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More than just a TV character

Bishop was written as a “compact lesbian model” but Bex worked with the producers to transform them into a non-binary character, who is still fashionable and well put together. “After I got the role, our showrunner Kimberly Harrison set up a meeting with me to discuss the direction of the show. Following our beautiful conversation about life and out personal stories, she asked what I wanted to add to my character, and I said, ‘How about non-binary?’ She loved it. So we did it,” explains Bex who also identifies as non-binary.

A stamp of approval

Getting the approval for Bishop was a major coup for Bex, since they were going to be one of the first non-binary characters on an American drama (there is also Asia Kate Dillon who is non-binary, just as the character Taylor is that they play in Billions).

“It’s a big responsibility but I’m up for the challenge. Everyone deserves to be seen and growing up, I never had someone who I could watch and relate to. I’d like this character to represent people who are ‘othered’ and don’t feel seen or heard, especially in law enforcement. There are so many people who identify as queer and want to do good in the world,” says Bex. “Bishop is authentic and absolutely good at their job. They are unapologetically themself in a world where everyone wants to get ahead for personal gain.”


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Deputy S1 starts on Monday, 11 May on Universal (117) at 20:00 


How to watch Deputy online

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