Transparent: S1

Sublime. Nuanced. Sophisticated. Intelligent. Celebratory. How many words will it take to describe the beauty and elegance of the new Amazon Prime television series, Transparent? Listen to the hype. This truly is the best new television show of the year. Actors so good you hate some of them, cringe over others, cry, laugh and marvel awestruck over others. Six Feet Under alum Jill Soloway has struck gold with her first series loosely based on her own father’s experience coming out as trans later in life. The series is that and so much more. Transparent truthfully tackles the journey of Jeffrey Tambor’s character Maura as she transitions at 68 from man to woman while focusing attention on her three grown children played brilliantly by actors Amy Landecker (Sarah), Jay Duplass (Josh), and Gaby Hoffman (Ali). Rounding out the cast is the brilliant Judith Light as Maura’s ex-wife Shelly. The show includes flashbacks to witness the arduous journey Tambor’s character walks. Maura’s decision not only alters her life dramatically but immediately affects her three children in profound ways. The acting is delicious. Favorite secondary characters include uber-driven lesbian Tammy (Melora Hardin), Maura’s gal pal, Davina (Alexandra Billings), Josh’s childhood babysitter Rita (Brett Paesel), and Sarah’s husband Len (Rob Huebel). There’s so many brilliant scenes in the ten half-hour episodes of the first season, it’s nearly impossible to pick a favorite. For now I’ll just say run to Amazon Prime and watch this captivating new series. Humanity got a little bolder and a lot more truthful thanks to Transparent. Anna Madrigal is smiling. 5 out of 5.

July 14, 2017: A second look at this revolutionary television series does not disappoint. Yes, the Pfeffermans are a difficult family to witness. But it is that conflict inside each character which propels the series into areas never examined before in television. Transparent is ultimately one family’s experience of what it means to be a woman, to be female, to have white privilege, to be an outcast, to be selfish, to be heart-broken, to wear blinders, to be open to miracles. Transparent‘s messy cast of characters continues to inspire and entertain. Truly transcendent. 5 out of 5.



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