"This is the first queer role I have played on network television," said the actress.

By Rosy Cordero
February 10, 2021 at 01:47 PM EST

Punky Brewster character Cherie (Cherie Johnson) will be loved up on the Peacock series revival!

Johnson's love interest will be portrayed by Jasika Nicole, of Fringe, Scandal, and The Good Doctor fame, in her debut role portraying an LGBTQ character as a queer woman herself.

"This is the first queer role I have played on network television...so this is a really big deal for me," Nicole told GLAAD, which broke the casting news Wednesday. "I do think there is something really specifically special and important about seeing Black love depicted on television." 

She added, "Queerness incorporates families, and kids and all kinds of people and that is something that I want to continue to see represented in television."

Credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images; Robert Trachtenberg/Peacock

Nicole shared she was a fan of the original series and how proud she is to represent the LGBTQ community on TV for new generations.

"I truly do not have words for how powerful it is to see Black queer love, queer love, trans people and non-binary people," she said. "It is so essential to see people who are different than you are. It creates empathy, it creates compassion, and it expands your ability to love." 

Johnson previously teased her character would have a love interest on the revival, though she wouldn't share details about the special person in Cherie's life, during the Punky Brewster SCAD aTVfest reunion panel moderated by EW.

The Punky Brewster revival debuts via Peacock on February 25. Watch a trailer for the show above.

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