TV Highlights

Miss Transgender: Britain’s New Beauty Queens

BBC Three - 9pm

Who's in it?

Jai and Courtney are among the young transgender women battling it out in a grand pageant – who will come out on top?

In a nutshell

It’s fair to say that 2015 was the year of transgender transcendence, when the issues faced by those changing their gender hit the news and became a part of mass pop cultural consciousness. The image of Caitlyn Jenner on Vanity Fair was the emblem of this era, but things may well step up a gear in 2016. Here’s the first sign: a programme devoted to Miss Transgender, the beauty pageant that breaks the orthodoxy of… well, beauty pageants.

Around 40 women are in the running, in a celebration not just of beauty but of their success in unleasing their true selves. This documentary follows some of them – including the 22-year-old Jai, who only began living as a woman two months previously, and is understandably self-conscious about coming up against much women further into their transition. For that very reason, winning the pageant would be incredibly important to her. Meanwhile, there’s also Courtney, who’s been working as an escort and is now speaking out about being a trans sex worker.

What's the verdict?

Glamorous, poignant, and eye-opening, this is essential viewing which will shed new light on one of the big issues of our time.

Record Miss Transgender now on Virgin TV Anywhere

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07-07-2011