Top Boy season five sees Jasmine Jobson return as fan-favourite lesbian character Jaq

Everything you need to know about Top Boy's Jaq, played by Jasmine Jobson.

As hit drama Top Boy returns for a fifth and final season on Netflix, Jasmine Jobson reprises her role as gay drug dealer Jaq – and the stakes are higher than ever.

Top Boy – created by Ronan Bennett – made its name as a landmark series in Black British TV history when it aired its first two original on Channel 4 between 2011 and 2013. After a six year hiatus, Netflix revived the series with the support of “God’s Plan” rapper Drake, who acts as executive producer for seasons three to five.

Set in Hackney on the fictional Summerhouse estate, viewers follow the lives of two drug dealers Dushane (Ashley Walters) and Sully (Kane Robinson) as they try to forge a better future for themselves and the people they love, despite countless setbacks.

The series has received critical acclaim for as a high-calibre crime drama and for its nuanced depiction of the struggles facing young Black people in a modern-day Britain defined by gentrification and increasing poverty.

Earlier in 2023, Top Boy director William Stefan Smith won the coveted Best Director: Fiction award.

Backed up by a wide-range of supporting characters, British actor Jasmine Jobson joined the main cast as second-in-command to Dris Wright (Shone Romulus) at Summerhouse estate in season three.

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Who is Jasmine Jobson?

Rising star Jasmine Jobson was born in 1995 to a Jamaican father and Irish-Greek Cypriot mother.

After a brief time living with her parents, and then her grandmother, Jobson asked to be placed in the UK foster care system, calling it the “best thing I ever did” in an interview with Adobe in 2021.

She spent her late teenage years living in Westminster under the care of a woman named Valerie.

Jobson entered the acting industry after taking her GCSEs by joining the Big House Theatre Company through their 12-week programme. She slowly secured a series of roles in short films and minor TV appearances, but was left “heartbroken” after losing out on a role in Star Wars back in 2014.

Johnson’s life changed when she landed her big break as lesbian drug dealer Jaq in Netflix’s Top Boy revival in 2019.

Now appearing in her third season of the hit British series, Jobson has landed two BAFTA nominations for Best Supporting Actress in her role as Jaq, appeared in Sundance Film Festival playing lead character Lily in feature film Surge, and appeared in Forbes 30 under 30 for her contribution to European entertainment.

She also starred in the second season of BBC adaptation Noughts + Crosses.

Jasmine Jobson plays gay drug dealer Jaq Lawrence in Top Boy

Although Jasmine Jobson is best known for her role as gay character Jaq, the 28-year-old actor has never publicly discussed her own sexuality.

Jobson plays masc-presenting lesbian drug dealer Jaq Lawrence in season three, four and five of Top Boy. Viewers were first introduced to Jaq in season three, while main character Sully is in prison and Dushane is visiting Jamaica.

Her bold, brash and streetwise nature quickly helps her climb the ranks on Dushane’s return. She also has a girlfriend, Maude (Elizabeth Tan), who she tries to shield from her dangerous life. Meanwhile, she discovers her sister Lauryn has been seeing rival London Fields gang member Leyton (Kola Bokinni) and after a huge betrayal, Lauryn is forced to flee to Liverpool.

In season four, Jaq must help her sister Lauryn (Saffron Hocking) escape domestic abuse at the hands of her new boyfriend Curtis (Howard Charles) after she falls pregnant with his child. Elsewhere – in a plot praised by critics – Jaq and her new girlfriend Becks (Adwoa Aboah) are attacked by a homophobic group of teens while on a date one evening. The attack leaves them both shaken.

In season five, Jaq continues to navigate the complex world of drug dealing filled with shifting loyalties, violence and intense camaraderie. er relationship with Becks and the fallout of Lauryn murdering her ex Curtis at the end of season four is also set to be explored.

Top Boy star Jobson says Jaq’s sexuality is still ‘taboo’

Jasmine Jobson as Jaq and Adwoah Aboah as Becks the latest season of Top Boy.
Jasmine Jobson as Jaq and Adwoah Aboah as Becks the latest season of Top Boy. (Ali Painter/Netflix)

In an interview with Buzzfeed in 2022, after season four, Jobson opened up about the importance of portraying the difficulties Jaq and Becks’ face in their relationship.

“Through the two of them, we see a multifaceted queer relationship,” she told the publication. “Violence against LGBT people of colour is highlighted through the terrifying attack against Jaq – but their story mainly focuses on the reflection and self-development that comes with falling in love, and the authenticity is clear.”

Her co-star Adwoa also praised their fleshed-out characters and romance. “There’s this lovely sensitivity, and it’s so gentle,” she echoed. “So I think it’s really important for people to see that not just be like: that’s what it’s like to be in a relationship with a woman and blah, blah, blah – just a bit too performative. And I don’t think their relationship is.”

In another interview with Digital Spy, Jobson opened up about why playing a Black lesbian from the streets is such vital representation.

“One hundred per cent, it’s still a taboo,” she said. “And I think it’s very important that we see it, because it happens.”

And she sought to maintain the authenticity of her character while filming the traumatic scene where her and Becks are assaulted.

“I’ve got lots and lots of friends that are gay or lesbian,” she continued. “So [I asked] them what have they experienced [and] how they dealt with it, so I would kind of know how I was going to portray that scene.”

All five seasons of Top Boy are now streaming on Netflix.

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