Anna "Fairytale" Madrigal

I'm not sure how to write this, so I'm just going to write it. I just watched an extraordinary hour of television. And I flat-out want anyone who reads this to watch it, too, if you haven't already. You owe it to your heart not to miss out.

The series is called "Tales Of The City". To give some detail here, I googled the show to get some links from IMDB, and saw Wikipedia's page as well. Turns out I have just opened myself up to something wonderful, and have only seen the very tip of the iceberg. Forgive me if you know this already, but it turns out this new series is from an old series based on even older books. I cannot wait to explore more.

I want to keep this post kinda short, and I'll try to do that here. I feel like a few thousand words could easily burst from my fingers right now. Ok, Shann, slow down!

If you haven't seen the show on Netflix yet, I'm going to make a suggestion. Maybe it's a good suggestion, maybe not. But hear me out. My advice is, watch episode 8, Days of Small Surrenders, first. The first seven episodes center on several different subplots, and depending on your sensibilities, some of the story lines may not appeal to you. I've learned a lot from the rest of the series, and do recommend seeing all of the show.

The wonderful cis actress Olympia Dukakis is one of the main characters, reprising her role as Anna Madrigal, that I now know she first played back in the 90's. She's the patriarch of a wonderfully diverse family (was going to put quotes around family, but they aren't needed, really) whose stories we get to share in. She's the tie that binds all the rest together.

I don't want to give too much away, but there is a mystery around Anna. And the mystery slowly gets unraveled through the series, as you would expect. I purposely have stopped after being so moved by episode 8, but I cannot WAIT to continue on after I write this. I'll be finishing it today, as I took the day off work for other reasons. Very fortuitous!

Watch episode 8 if you never watch another episode. You might not want to watch the first 7 episodes of the show around anyone who is homophobic, transphobic, or if you are in the closet, unless you are prepared to be questioned about it. I'm just saying that there's a lot in there you don't see on TV everyday. Nothing anyone should be ashamed of. This show has a LOT of heart. That said, I think you can watch episode 8 in front of anyone. It's just beautiful television.

In episode 8 only, the younger Anna is played by the amazing trans actress Jen Richards, of whom I am quickly becoming a fan. I plan to seek out more of her work after I watch the rest of Tales. She is so beautiful, and her portrayal of Anna in this one magical episode is just perfect. Mad respect also for Luke Kirby, who plays her love interest.

Anyway, this episode is the dream, and also the nightmare, of many trans women. It's not without sadness, but the beauty outshines it, in my mind. You'll see why I named this post Anna "Fairytale" Madrigal. I have a lot more I could say, but I'll stop for now. Watch this episode, then go back to the beginning. See if the mystery surrounding Anna grips you like it has me. Or, watch from the beginning, and know that you are in for a real treat once you get to episode 8.

I hope you like it. You might want tissues around when you watch, in case you're a sentimental fool like me!


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