I was slightly more organized this weekend and got to see episode 2 of I Am Cait shortly after it was broadcast. Thoughts, I have them.
One of the things that comes over quite strongly in this episode is how innocent Caitlyn is about the whole trans scene, and the lives of other trans people. I guess in her position there was no possibility of mixing with other trans girls prior to transition, but that means she has got a lot of catching up to do. Still, I feel a little bit better to know that even Candis Cayne has trouble getting her hormone prescriptions. My own troubles don’t seem quite so bad now.
Something else that came through during the episode is Caitlyn’s right wing politics. The main plot of the show (and yes, reality TV does have plots) was that Jenny Boylan introduced Caitlyn to a bunch of other trans women, and they persuaded her to come up to San Francisco to meet others. Even in California, many trans people have fairly terrible lives. Cait, who has doubtless ingested a regular diet of Faux News, seemed to think it was more important to get them off benefits than to help them. Like I said, a lot to learn.
Jenny Boylan and Jen Richards seem to be doing a good job of education, and some of Jen’s expressions when Cait comes out with some horribly naive comment are a wonder to behold.
I now know why Angelica Ross was so upset. That was a truly vicious piece of editing that she was subjected to. I guess that because she is a) black and b) very pretty, the show’s editors decided to single her out for her involvement in sex work. Something needs to be done to stop that sort of thing happening in future episodes.
It was particularly annoying because, as Angelica noted on Twitter, it came shortly after a clip in which Jen said that it was important not to reduce trans women to their traumas. Yes, many of us have had terrible aspects to our lives. But those of us who have survived that have often gone on to do amazing things too. Angelica is one such person.
Jen, who has a particular facility with sound bites, came up with another interesting comment elsewhere in the show. She said that from a PR point of view, what the trans community needs after Caitlyn is for a male celebrity to go public with the fact that he is dating a trans girl and thinks she’s a wonderful woman. It’s not like it doesn’t happen, but of course if the tabloids find out the guy always dumps the girl and tries to pretend he never had anything to do with her (not looking at anyone in particular, Danny Cipriani).
Talking of which, if there are any guys out there who don’t think that trans girls can be pretty, tune in and get an eyeful of Candis, because that girl is smoking! Respect, sister! Loved the lace dress too.
Talking of relationships, Jen Richards and Angelica Ross are two of the main driving forces behind Her Story, a TV series about trans women and love. The material is all shot, but they need money for post-production. Go here and help.