Wednesday, November 26, 2014

On TV And In the Movies

GLAAD has a report on their blog about trans-people on the television,
GLAAD's third annual Trans Images on TV report finds some improvement
By Megan Townsend, GLAAD's Entertainment Media Strategist
November 18, 2014

In the latest installment of its annual Trans Images on TV report released today, GLAAD finds some improvement over the previous year's results when it comes to transgender representation on scripted television. This year, GLAAD reviewed 13 new scripted episodes with trans characters that have aired since November 2013. In a slight improvement, 46% (6) of the 13 episodes tracked were considered defamatory. This is a drop of 8% from the previous two reports. Another 39% (5) fell in the range of problematic to acceptable. But still only two episodes (15%) were considered outstanding: Drop Dead Diva's "Identity Crisis," and Orphan Black's "Variable and Full of Perturbation." Both episodes focused on transgender men, which is quite unusual as trans men remain largely invisible in mainstream media.
There was only one episode this year in which a trans character was portrayed as a victim, and none where they were portrayed as the villain. In the previous two reports, 35% of episodes tracked included characters classified as victims, while 19% of tracked episodes included trans characters in the role of murderers or villains. Additionally, only one character this year was portrayed as a sex worker, Venus Van Dam on FX's Sons of Anarchy. This is an improvement over previous years in which the most common profession for trans characters was sex worker.

Unfortunately, anti-transgender slurs, language, and dialogue continue to be prevalent in television. Of the 13 episodes tracked, 39% (5) of them contained problematic language - often spoken by popular or sympathetic characters with whom the audience is supposed to identify. These slurs typically go unchallenged by anyone else in the episode.
Candis Cayne was back on TV show, this time for a guest appearance as a housekeeper on CBS' Elementary, the last time she was on TV it was on the show “Dirty Sexy Money” and she played a prostitute. The only other show that had a trans-actress actually playing a trans-person was the Netflix’s show “Orange is the New Black.” All the other shows had actresses imitation a trans-person.

On the big screen, even though the article didn’t cover movies, there was one movie that is making the rounds of LGBT film festivals that is getting acclaims, Boy Meets Girl, it is a very good love story, and it actually has a trans-woman playing a trans-woman. I have seen the movie twice and want to buy the DVD when it comes out.

The other movie is in the works, “The Danish Girl” about the life of Lili Elbe who will be played by actor Eddie Redmayne.

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