The second season of “Transparent” is out this Friday. In this week’s issue of The New Yorker, Ariel Levy spoke with Jill Soloway, the radical mind behind the hit show. Read the full piece:
  1. “Transparent” is a product of the female gaze: Season 1 of “Transparent” was directed exclusively by women.
  2. Four of the five primary characters in the show are female.
  3. Every decision on the show is vetted by Rhys Ernst and Zachary Drucker, trans activists and artists. “We monitor the politics of representation—if we catch things in the writing stage, it’s kind of optimal because then there’s time to shape it,” Drucker told Levy.
  4. Most of the writers of “Transparent” don’t have a TV background. They come from academia, fiction, queer activism, film, and musical theatre.
  5. One writer, Our Lady J, came in through Soloway’s “transfirmative action” program. Soloway wanted a “trans-feminine perspective,” but couldn’t find a television writer who had one. So she solicited essays from trans women and then gave half a dozen of them a weeklong tutorial on writing for TV.
  6. Her production company is called Topple, as in “topple the patriarchy.”
  7. She talks about how women are naturally suited to being directors: “We all know how to do it. We fucking grew up doing it! It’s dolls. How did men make us think we weren’t good at this? It’s dolls and feelings. And women are fighting to become directors? What the fuck happened?”