Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid opened up about Channel 4's powerful new drama It's a Sin on Monday's Good Morning Britain, and spoke to journalist Andrew Pierce about the heartbreaking reality of the AIDS epidemic at the time.
MORE: It's a Sin: the touching true story behind Jill
Calling the show a "moving piece", Piers asked Andrew about living through the terrible crisis when the gay community didn't receive the right help or support.
WATCH: Piers and Susanna hear about the heartbreaking reality behind It's a Sin
The show's guest said: "We were demonised, actually. It was our time in the 1980s, we were young, we were walking on water, homosexuality had only been legalised in 1965... but what we hadn't realised is that there was this lethal virus hunting us down.
The series looks at the AIDS epidemic
He continued: "If you went to a club or bar and you hadn't seen someone in the few weeks, you'd hear this terrible phrase that I heard in Russell T. Davies' brilliant series, 'Oh they've gone home for good.' They've gone home to mum and dad's to die.
MORE: It's a Sin: meet the cast of the Channel 4 drama
MORE: It's a Sin: everything you need to know about the Channel 4 drama
"The difference with the pandemic then is that it wasn't on the TV much until the media picked it up then it became a gay cancer, a gay plague. I couldn't go into my local pub anymore unless I took my own beer glass because the regulars thought they might catch something. That's how stigmatising it was."
Andrew opened up about the reality of the time
Viewers were quick to discuss the interview, with one writing: "Thank god life has moved on, I was living and working in London at the peak of the AIDS crisis working on an infectious diseases unit my MIL told me don’t come to my house if you are mixing with people like that! Grrrrr makes me mad to think of it."
Another added: "Such an interesting piece this morning thank you for your honesty. It seems unthinkable that it was like that!"
Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.