Transparent

Transparent Season 2 premiere

Transparent, Ep. 2.01, “Kina Hora”

If the first episode of Transparent’s second season is any indication, any critic making a Top 10 list needs to wait until the full season premieres on December 11th.

Why You Should Start Watching: Transparent

Jeffrey Tambor stars as Maura Pfefferman, a retired college professor transgender woman who comes out to her family about her gender identity late in life. Meanwhile, her three adult children all struggle with their own personal problems, as well as the challenges posed by Maura’s transition.

30 Best TV Series of 2014

2014 has been yet another fantastic year for television, one that continued the nichification of the medium, with highly specific and underrepresented voices breaking through in every genre. There was a comedy explosion, particularly on cable, with dozens of new series presenting confident first seasons and several returning shows reaching new heights. The dramas didn’t disappoint either, with visionary creators bringing new life to familiar settings and taking greater risks with their returning series, deepening their worlds. Throughout the year, directors and cinematographers brought lush visuals, composers pushed the auditory envelope, and an astonishing number of actors gave fantastic, memorable performances. More than a few shows delivered spectacle on a weekly basis, while others went small, deriving incredible power out of stillness and self-reflection. Some series swept the audience up, week in and week out, and others built subtly, only showing their hand in their season’s final episodes. There truly was too much great television this year for any one person to see it all (95 separate series were nominated by our contributors!), so limiting the discussion to 10 or even 20 series would be ridiculous. Instead, here is Sound on Sight’s list of the 30 best series of what has been another wonderful year for television.

30 Best TV Series of 2014

2014 has been yet another fantastic year for television, one that continued the nichification of the medium, with highly specific and underrepresented voices breaking through in every genre. There was a comedy explosion, particularly on cable, with dozens of new series presenting confident first seasons and several returning shows reaching new heights. The dramas didn’t disappoint either, with visionary creators bringing new life to familiar settings and taking greater risks with their returning series, deepening their worlds. Throughout the year, directors and cinematographers brought lush visuals, composers pushed the auditory envelope, and an astonishing number of actors gave fantastic, memorable performances. More than a few shows delivered spectacle on a weekly basis, while others went small, deriving incredible power out of stillness and self-reflection. Some series swept the audience up, week in and week out, and others built subtly, only showing their hand in their season’s final episodes. There truly was too much great television this year for any one person to see it all (95 separate series were nominated by our contributors!), so limiting the discussion to 10 or even 20 series would be ridiculous. Instead, here is Sound on Sight’s list of the 30 best series of what has been another wonderful year for television.

Why you should be watching: Transparent

Intimacy is a difficult thing to film. Rather, it’s difficult to film well. You can capture two people clutched closely together, in a vulnerable moment, so that it feels as if the camera is encroaching on their privacy, an intruder. You can film in close-up, for a more practical intimacy, catching every hair and freckle. But to really feel like you’re getting a close understanding of the characters onscreen, there’s no list of actions one should take. Jill Soloway has figured it out.

Transparent season 1

‘Transparent’ Season 1 is an audacious, fully-realized piece of television

I imagine my feelings after finishing Transparent’s incredible first season were much like many people’s feelings after Orange is the New Black premiered. It is wholly original and seems to exist as a result of the ways online streaming has opened up the medium of television to previously unrepresented characters. I was enamored both with the show’s characters and the way it approached issues of gender identity and sexuality. I needed to keep binge watching.

Transparent follows the Pfefferman clan, a tightly knit Jewish family living in Los Angeles, as their lives are changed by one member’s brave announcement. Maura (Jeffrey Tambor) comes out to her family as a woman, despite being their father and going by the name Mort for all of their lives. Pfefferman matriarch Shelly (Judith Light) confronts this new knowledge as well as her new husband’s mortality. Eldest daughter Sarah (Amy Landecker) reignites a flame with a college ex-girlfriend after realizing how unhappy she is with her husband. Middle child Josh (Jay Duplass) seems to be on the verge of a midlife crisis as more and more romances fail in spectacular fashions. Youngest daughter Ali (Gaby Hoffman) is adrift in both her professional and personal life.

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