Tag Archives: Sex Change Hospital
Jim Howley, one of the eight bachelors competing for Calpernia Addams’ affections on Monday night’s new dating series Transamerican Love Story, phoned into the World of Wonder offices to dish the dirt on what it was like to be ‘outed’ as a transgendered man himself, in the first twenty minutes of the premiere episode no less. Eagle-eyed viewers, however, may remember Jim previously disclosing his not-so-secret gender switch on another WOW production: Sex Change Hospital. Listen to Jim’s voicemail here, and visit Jim’s MySpace here.
On today’s Oprah, the topic is “Born in the Wrong Body,” and she has as one of her guests Dr Marci Bowers, the surgeon (and herself a transgender) on WOW’s six-part docuseries, Sex Change Hospital, currently running on Channel 4 in the UK. In this clip from the series, we see Vicki, two days after genital reassignment surgery, checking out the results.
“Everyone has a right to be an individual and comfortable in their own body. Some folk, however, like those on ‘Sex Change Hospital’, just abuse the bloody privilege. If I were to say that two grown men, last eve, removed their dinkles, became women, and then started a lesbian affair, would you believe me? Well, hopefully, yes. This is the 21st century, after all, you blasted prudes! If I were to tell you that the very same two lesbian trans-genders teamed up as a ‘Cagney and Lacey’ style duo in the weekend to fight crime, would you still have faith in my musings? In all honesty, I don’t even believe myself. Unfortunately, ‘Sex Change’ hospital is a reality. It is a serious show what deals with the cold, hard facts of this world in which we live. There are two dyke, balless muscle Marys molesting innocent criminals in the U.S. as we speak. The mind certainly boggles.”
Two positive reports on WOW’s Sex Change Hospital. One from a viewer who watched the six-episode television series in the UK and found it “awfully happy,” and another who saw the stand-alone episode at Frameline 31 in San Francisco and who happens to be a friend of one of the subjects, yet without bias thought it was “probably the best ‘sex change’ film I’d ever seen.”
Tired of biting his nails down to the bone worrying about the Sex Change Hospital screening later in the day, Chris McKim headed down to San Francisco’s Delores Park to meet up with Thairin Smothers and Andrew Schneider and Kristin Rasmussen and the rest of the WOW crew, where he took these great shots of the assembled lesbians and the people who love them, gathered for the pre-Gay Pride Dyke March festivities.
– Steven Corfe
Steven Corfe writes:
This weekend was the closing weekend of the Frameline LGBT Film Festival, and a group of WOWers traveled up to San Francisco to support the screening of our film Sex Change Hospital and partake in the coinciding Gay Pride activities. SCH screened Saturday afternoon at the Roxie, and both of the subjects featured in the first episode, Vicki Estrada and Jim Howley, were there with family and friends. Not an easy feat for Vicki, one would imagine, sitting in a room with friends and strangers watching your penis being surgically transformed into a vagina on a 40-foot screen. As Jim said during the Q&A that followed, he usually has dinner bought for him before he lets people see him naked. But the subjects’ bravery was the common theme of the post-screening chat, along with praise for director Chris McKim for striking a balance between the science of gender reassignment and the emotional journey of the people undergoing it. I sat behind Vicki, and was touched to see her daughter (from Vicki’s earlier marriage, when she was Steve) hugging her during the painful parts of the film.
We emerged into the daylight just in time to see the Dykes on Bikes parade ripping past on Harleys; then it was up to the Castro for more vagina (Bruce LaBruce’s Give Piece of Ass a Chance) and penis (RuPaul’s Starrbooty). Having survived being mobbed on the street, RuPaul introduced her film looking statuesque and retro-fabulous in a shimmering gown and enormous white afro. “Now where am I going to sit?” she asked. “I don’t want to block anyone’s view.” The blaxploitation flick was non-stop hilarity, with enough ghetto glamour, trannies turning tricks, and porn-star penis to make your average fundamentalist choke on the spot. “In Loving Memory of Jerry Falwell” read the end card, the last laugh of the film. Ru extended the laughs a bit longer with her audience Q&A, and an audience request for her to repeat a line in character as the movie’s undercover hooker provided what might become the movie’s legacy line: “My name Cupcake.” It’s all in Ru’s delivery, of course, but expect the T-shirts soon. Post movie celebrations went down in daddy-leather bar Eagle SF, The End Up, and God knows where else, and everyone agreed that a gay old time had been had by all.
– Steven Corfe
(Photos by Chris McKim and Thairin Smothers, from top: Castro Theatre marquee; Jim Howley; Vicki Estrada, SCH production coordinator Kristin Rasmussen, SCH director Chris McKim, and Jim Howley; Steven Corfe and Randy Barbato; smokin’ WOWer James McGowan; dancer at The End Up; RuPaul and SF native Quartknee at the Starbooty screening; WOW guy Dwight Armstrong; a mammaltoe at Eagle SF; End Up host André; bellying up to the bar at The End Up; artist Clancy Cavnar at Eagle SF; gratuitous shot of WOWer Thairin Smothers at Roxie SCH screening)