Disclosure, not the Demi Moore/ Michael Douglas hit from 1994 but the documentary on the history of representation of trans people currently on Netflix, is a fascinating film that incites conversation. I wanted to talk to Kacey de Groot on it because, as a trans woman and trans activist, she’s in a position to teach us a lot about the issues the film raises. The conversation ranges from the film itself, to other representations in films and television (A Fantastic Woman, Pose, Transparent) to an account of areas of personal experience the film incited on to broader areas relating to the politics of representation. I’m a teacher and listening is part of learning and land learning and teaching are inextricably bound in inexhaustible ways. The podcast can be listened to here.
I set aside a chunk of Monday to watch Game of Thrones only to discover but one episode available. So I saw Pose instead, which I´ve come late to, and which I found deeply moving and very funny, if not without some of the forced and sitcommy characterisations of people and relationships so typical of Ryan Murphy´s work. The acting is a bit wooden at times but the casting of real-life trans actors to play trans characters makes up for that, and the show has found a real star in Indya Moore who plays Blanca. The series showcases glamorous outfits, exciting quasi-musical numbers or ´walks,´and there are even a couple of songs sung to great effect. The soundtrack as a whole is full of songs one initially barely remembers, until they come on and revive what one felt then now, and with extraordinary immediacy and effect. Pose lacks the grit, analysis, critique and effect of Paris is Burning. But it´s compelling, addictive viewing that focusses on the construction of alternative families in the context of a terrifying pandemic and in the face of social exclusion, well evoking the period.