Monday, October 06, 2014

"Transparent": Amazon Studios makes successful dramedy series about a transgendered professor


As an Amazon Prime member, I tried Jill Soloway’s “Transparent” this evening, the Pilot, that had aired in late August.  It’s just a half-hour show and has some of the wit, if not the mockumentary style, of “Modern Family”. 
  
In a well-to-do Jewish family in Los Angeles (the Pfeffermans), a retired former professor Mort (Jeffrey Tambor) and family patriarch, after divorce, plans his transformation to female.  He needs to tell his adult kids, but when he tries, he goes awry, letting the kids wonder if he has cancer and start wondering how the inheritances might go.  (Oh, there’s that left wing objection to inherited wealth.)
  
There are plenty of other tender mercies among the adult kids in the 30-hour pilot. Netflix and “Amazon Studios” are rapidly getting into the business of underwriting direct-to-video series on their own, it seems, to the delight of critics. It’s something that a nouveau author with ideas of getting a movie made needs to heed. 

In one scene, Mort says he has "dressed up as a man" his whole life, and what you see now is "who I am." -- or "This is me." 
  
   
The official site for playback or rental is here

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