Bent TV is a volunteer organisation encompassing an audio visual production group dedicated to creating engaging visual media to contribute to an inclusive society that affirms and accepts sexual and gender diversity.
‘Trans-mission’ is a 13 part series from Bent TV that delves into the real world of people who do not identify with the sex they were assigned at birth. In a world first for a production of its kind, the series is made by, for and about people from gender diverse backgrounds in Melbourne. The series shows the real lives of real people. It debunks stereotypes and preconceptions while celebrating the lives of ordinary people who live extraordinary lives.
The process of changing gender or living in a fluid state between genders can be a difficult process for those living the experience and a confronting one for the general public. Through a series of candid interviews, public commentary and panel discussions, “Trans-mission” explores the many facets of the lived experience for people that identify as gender diverse. Through thirteen episodes, people dissect the parts of their everyday lives. Everything from growing up with gender questioning to medical procedures and mental health issues to learning to manage identification issues to relationships, shopping and sexuality goes before the cameras.
‘Trans-mission’ was filmed during 2014 and aired on Channel 31 in Melbourne at for 13 weeks from September to December 2014. Episodes are now available below for use as a Transgender support resource for any non-commercial purposes.
The City of Melbourne had kindly provided a grant that assisted Bent TV with the creation and filming of ‘Trans-mission’.
Trans-mission: Steering Committee
Bent TV set up a Trans-mission Steering Committee to guide and assist in the making of ‘Trans-mission’. The Steering Committee included members of Trans support groups FTM Shed, Gay & Lesbian Switchboard, Genderqueer Australia, Seahorse Victoria, Transgender Victoria, YGender, & Zoe Belle Gender Centre, among others.
There are many different sub-categories along the Trans spectrum. Some people undergo gender reassignment surgery, some don't. Some people take hormones, some don't. Some people live their gender full-time, some don't. Some people ultimately move to a gender binary position, some don't. ‘Trans-mission’ accepts that all Trans people are valid and that all their stories are essential pieces of the shared story of humanity.
Bent TV has been creating LGBTI TV for more than 20 years. The relationships built over that time created the trust needed to get Trans people on to ‘Trans-mission’ to tell their stories. Bent TV believes that Trans people are awesome and super cool, and that there is more to them than just their Trans status. ‘Trans-mission’ brings all this to light.
Pilot program #1 our very own 13 part series Trans-mission which launched 1 September, 2014 Super cool host Nate Reid is joined by Transgender musician/ architect Simona Kapitolina and talk things creative.
Pilot program #2. Settle in with a cuppa and join Nate Reid and Kurt Egan as they have a nice chat about negotiating a trans gendered life. It’s a real kitchen table conversation.
Taster trailer. A taste on what's to follow as you work your way down through out 13 part series. Enjoy!
Monday September 01, 2014
Part 1: It's a nice chat around that kitchen table with host Nate Reid and teacher Ernest Price who talk about transitioning while working in a very public school environment and then they talk things doggy. Sweet!
Part 2:We take to the streets and ask people the question “Who has given you the most support on your gender journey and how did they help?”. Fascinating range of answers intriguing range of people. We were surprised how often family, particularly mothers, made the grade. Smashed another preconception. This is what we do at Bent!.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron talks to Gem, Grace and Simona about that all-important point of first recognition when people came to realisation about their gender mismatch. If you thought coming out as queer was hard to do….
Monday September 08, 2014
Part 1: Ultra-cool host Nate Reid has a kitchen table chat with the sublime Greer McGearey. Greer chats about her life with Seahorse Victoria (July 18th, 2015, Seahorse will be 40 years old), her involvement with Toastmasters International, and family. A private person with a very public life. Fascinating!
Part 2:Host Sammy Cameron takes to the skate park and talks to skater girl Evie Ryder about skating, activism, her work in trans women’s sexuality and surviving Queensland. So many rich stories, so little time.
Part 3:Sammy Cameron in the studio talks to Dee Chryssomallos, Nate Reid & Simona Kapitolina about that vital point of the trans process when people decide to go through the medical processes. The discussion is about who gets to make the decision and when. It's not as straight forward as you might think or at least though. We are learning soooo much!
Monday September 15, 2014
Part 1: Host Nate Reid chats to spoken word poet Fury about living as ‘gender non-binary’. It’s fascinating to hear Fury talk about how they (note the preferred personal pronoun) managed coming out working at a museum.
Part 2: Superheroes. We ask a selection of people the question “Is it time we had a Trans superhero? What would their name be and what is their super power?”. We like the idea of a backstory to Wonder Woman with a gender swapping gun, and the idea of a super hero named Marlee.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron talks to Nate Reid, Kurt Egan and Isabelle Basher about the hormones people have to take through the trans process. We learn about the effects of estrogen and testosterone on the mind and body: hair, voice, weight and certainly emotions all change. Fascinating stuff for those of us who aren't familiar with the process and those of us who have, will certainly find lots to relate to.
Monday September 22, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid chats to person-around-town Marlee about life in high school and involvement with Y Gender, Minus 18 and life as a ukulele performer.
Part 2:Sammy Cameron talks to speech pathologist Georgia Dacakis, who is the coordinator of the Voice Clinic at La Trobe University, where the biggest demand is for voice feminisation. Georgia and Sammy have a fascinating chat about the mechanics of changing the perception of gender of the voice. We even get intriguing peaks at demonstrations in the clinic.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron talks to Grace Lee, Kurt Egan and Isabelle Basher, about being trans and managing relationships. When do you disclose your trans status? What are the issues in managing a relationship with a partner who is transitioning? How do you deal with the douche bags of this world? So many questions, so little time. Don’t miss a second of this.
Monday September 29, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid has a natter with trans guy Dale Crane about his life managing his gender dysphoria through the 70s. Fascinating to hear Dale talk about surviving that era (including a lucky escape from the Tasty raid), handling inappropriate questions and growing his impressive beard.
Part 2: We take to the streets where we ask the question "What tips would you give to a young person who isn't totally comfortable with the gender they were assigned to at birth?". Interesting range of responses but there is a common theme. Do you agree? Have other tips? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Part 3: Sammy Cameron talks to Millaa Mercer, Danii Bux Briggs and ML Lovely about being a minority within the trans communities. There are so many segments of and within the trans communities: those who do/don't have the operations, those who do/don't take hormones, those who live full time vs those who live part time in their preferred gender and that's even before you talk about the treatment from the mainstream gay/lesbian community.
Monday October 13, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid chats to well-known, long-time community activist Sally Goldner about what inspires her, being proactive in fighting bi and trans phobia. Sally is inspirational. #binarybusting learn all about it.
Part 2: Sammy Cameron has a tête-à-tête with the world’s most famous trans porn star Buck Angel. Sammy and Buck talk through Buck’s history of drug addiction, prostitution, ‘sex change’ and the highs and lows of now being an elder in the community. Very interesting chat (and what those guns on Buck!).
Part 3: Sammy Cameron host's a panel discussion on the question of “Is coming out the hardest step of the whole trans experience?”. Jez Pez, Ashley Van Den Akker and Grace Lee talk about their coming out experiences and what they have discovered were the most effective strategies in dealing with the varied responses. Love Sammy Cameron’s ingenuity in setting up a website with FAQ’s for her circle. Lots to learn.
Monday October 20, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid welcomes Andrew Eklund of FTM Shed, the well-known support group for trans guys. Nate talks to Andrew about coming out later in life but also about managing the transition from a straight woman to trans guy with a partner and son in tow. Fascinating stuff.
Part 2: The importance of names. One of the hardest decisions trans folk have to make is deciding on a new name. In this segment we ask a number of people “What's your name and what does it mean to you?” Really interesting range of responses. If you had to change your name to one of a different gender, what would it be? Send an email to email@example.com
Part 3: A panel discussion on the issue of mental health; a very topical subject. Sean Benson, Sammy Cameron, Toni Paynter and Nate Reid talk about the high rate of mental health issues within the trans communities and discuss strategies for coping and managing. Toni makes the very important point and one that too many people forget, that being trans is not a ‘mental condition’ it's the issue of acceptance either from yourself or from the world at large that causes the problem.
Monday October 27, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid talks to Dee Chryssomallos about FTM Shed the well-established support group for trans guys. Dee talks about the work the FTM Shed does and about how he managed his personal trans process while owning his own trade business and living in a small country town. These personal stories are gold, so many inspirational people in our community.
Part 2: Sammy Cameron interviews surgeon Andrew Ives about surgical process for trans people. For those of us who don’t know (or think we do) Sammy gets Andrew to detail some of the basic process for both male to female and female to male surgeries. Don’t worry it's safe even for the very squeamish.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron is joined in the studio by Nate Reid, Jez Pez and Fury to discuss things medical and procedural. Sammy kicks the ball off talking about the politics of asking the 64 thousand dollar question “Have you had the operation?” and the panel explores the assumptions made about people who have or have not had the major gender reassignment operation
Monday November 03, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid chats to Danii Bux Briggs all the way from Shepparton about living life as an Indigenous trans person in the small(ish) country town. It’s not all about cows and fields and it’s not all bad and not all good but it is fascinating to hear Danii talk through the process of coming out to friends and family and how she manages her life and dreams today.
Part 2: Trans-mission hit the streets and ask; "If you had a magic wand what would you change to make the world better for trans people?" A fascinating range of responses.
Part 3: SEX and SEXUAL HEALTH is the table topic of choice. Sammy Cameron is joined by Nate Reid, Mish Glitter Pony and Andrew Eklund to discuss Is sex different for trans people and is an attraction to Trans people a fetish?
Monday November 10, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid is joined by Ashley Van Den Akker a Karaoke queen (World Championship, no less) and a woman who happens to be trans. Ashley talks about the problems of going through the trans process while trying to maintain a relationship, living life in a rural area and coming out twice ten years apart.
Part 2: Nate Reid is joined by Mish Glitter Pony who is among other things, a trans sex worker activist. Mish talks about their work with the Scarlett Alliance, the Australian Sex Workers Association and their personal journey through the trans process.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron is joined by Dale Crane, Robyn Crawford and Sally Goldner to talk about the process of changing names and genders on all official documents. It’s a lot simpler than it used to be, but it isn’t as simple as it should be.
Monday November 17, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid is joined by Toni, a Ms Gay and Ms Transsexual pageant winner, and singer. Toni talks about growing up in the Philippines and going through the trans process while working as a nurse in the wilds of Canberra.
Part 2:“What words do you like to use to describe people who transition their gender?” That's our question but this time we are asking trans people about describing other trans people. Interesting interpretations of the question and such a range of responses. Is there a right answer even?
Part 3: Sammy Cameron is joined by Greer McGearey, Andrew Eklund and Sally Goldner to talk about legal rights for trans people and poses the questions, "Are trans people treated as equal in the eyes of the law?" and "How does the law protect trans people from discrimination and stigma?"
Monday November 24, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid has an absorbing conversation with Jez Pez about being a queer trans man who has a family (he has 2 year old twins!). Jez talks about the difficulties of negotiating the social scene in the queer community and how being trans, being queer, and being a family man can be an issue.
Part 2:Buck Angel, what else do we need to say?! Sammy Cameron is back with part 2 of international porn star and activist Buck Angel talking about physical bits and pieces and mental bits and pieces of the trans process. They talk testosterone, things surgical and about dating and negotiating around penises and vagina's. The insert shots of porn star Buck are priceless.
Part 3: Sammy Cameron, Amy Hamblin, Bernice Canty and Dale Crane talk about experiences with the law and about police relations with the trans communities. Amy’s in the Air Force and Bernice was the first transgender officer with the Victorian Police and has been serving for over 10 years. Things aren’t perfect but it does seem that we've come a long way from the bad old days when trans people bore the particular brunt of stigmatism and harassment
Monday December 01, 2014
Part 1: Nate Reid is joined by Gem, who among other things works with Genderqueer Australia. Very interesting to hear Gem talk about the definitions of Gender queer and the issue of 'not being trans enough' for either the community or to get the right medical treatment. Another fascinating personal and yet political story.
Part 2:Question time: "What is the best thing about taking your gender journey" is the question on the street. Great range of responses. What's your favourite?”
Part 3: Sammy Cameron, Amy Hamblin, Bernice Canty and Dale Crane talk about experiences with the law and about police relations with the trans communities. Amy's in the Air Force and Bernice was the first Transgender officer with the Victorian Police and has been serving for over 10 years. Things aren't perfect but it does seem that we've come a long way from the bad old days when trans people bore the particular brunt of stigmatism and harassment.
If you would like to talk about feelings these programs may have raised for you, you may wish to contact www.switchboard.org.au
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