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Documentaries, Shows, Films, Interviews, and Games.

Invisibility of trans men is perpetuated by documentaries like Disclosure (2020), which erased or glossed over many of the trans male documentaries, shows, and films that deserved recognition and critique. This site is an effort to collate media which often goes unmentioned, resulting in generations of isolation among trans guys.
Disclosure also failed to criticise a cornerston
e of harmful FTM representation; unsafe chest binding. This site aims to fill that gap, and record instances where media sets a dangerous example for viewers.

The primary goal of this site is to review trans male media, and promote the visibility of trans men. However, this site also features broader AFAB gender-diverse media.

This website is run by a trans man, and all reviews are my own opinions only. I have included warnings related to violence, assault, misgendering, and other content that I consider important to forewarn. If you have concerns about specific themes, I recommend doing your own research into media before you engage with it. If you want to avoid spoilers, and you don't require content warnings, you can just read the titles. I have not personally reviewed every film, documentary, show, game, or interview on this site... Not yet, anyway! But I have reviewed quite a few. If I had endless free time, I would've already watched everything on this site.

Because this site is an archive of media from many different social contexts, you may encounter language that you are not familiar with, language that you would not personally use to describe trans and gender-diverse people, and language that might be offensive to you. Please keep that in mind. If you are new to gender-diverse terminology, this page is a (non-exhaustive) starting point.

Some modern butches identify as transmasculine (as seen in this thread and this video) so a few reviews have been written with those transmasc butches in mind. Again, though, this site is primarily dedicated to trans men.

By default, all media is shown below, accessible through the "LOAD MORE" button and sorted by date, oldest to newest. If you would like to see everything, leave all checkboxes unticked. If you would like to narrow your search, you can use multiple checkboxes. As an example, if you would like to see all films released between the start of 2010 and the end of 2019, tick the "Film" box and the "2010 to 2019" box. If you are only interested in seeing films about trans men/boys, you can tick the "Trans Male" box as well.

If the "LOAD MORE" button is greyed out, that means there are no more pieces of media to display. If you would like to return to viewing all media, use the "CLEAR FILTERS" button, or untick the checkboxes you have ticked.

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A White Australian trans man named Peter Alexander

Meet The Girl Who Became a Man



Australia, New Zealand

Peter Alexander, interviewed in Sydney but originally from New Zealand, speaks of his transition from female-to-male in a humorous and relaxed way. He discusses the aspects of his personality which influenced his decision, his view of women in society, and his plans for the future. Remember, trans men have always existed, and we deserve to be included in trans histories! You can watch his interview here. I found it via the Digital Transgender Archive, here. There is an incredibly sensationalist, transphobic article about Alexander here, from the same year.

John LaZar as Ronnie Barzell in the film Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls



United States

You can read my full review here. This film depicts a trans man as a perverted, deceitful, violent freak who sexually harasses and assaults a cishet man, before killing him. He also violently murders two lesbians, and embodies harmful trans tropes and homophobic ideas about the sexual aggression of gay men.

John Ventantonio as George Atwood in the film Private Parts

Private Parts



United States

While this is chiefly a silly, overdramatic movie that I didn't find particularly upsetting, aspects of the plot have disturbing parallels to injustices experienced by trans men in real life. When this film's canonical trans male character, George, is found dead, amused policemen ogle his exposed non-op chest and remark, "Look at the jugs on this guy! Boy, oh boy! With knockers like that, I could go for this guy myself!" In death, he is reduced to being a freakish specimen, much like the FTM villain in Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, released two years prior to this film. His trans body is a source of disgust, fascination, and arousal, accompanied by complete apathy towards the fact that he has been killed.

Unlike Beyond the Valley of the Dolls however, a narrative of trans deception and perversion was planned from the very beginning of Private Parts, to the extent that injectable testosterone is clearly visible in George's cabinets, for viewers who are paying attention. Another difference between the two films is that Private Parts doesn't just portray a trans man as a sexually obscene weirdo, but also as a feeble, pathetic, damaged person who only transitioned because he had an abusive mother who forced him to be trans. In that sense, Private Parts offers dual transphobic tropes, mirroring the logic used to mock real FTM journeys; transition as a manifestation of perverse, unacceptable sexual desire, and transition as a result of domestic abuse and bad parenting. The idea that trans men can't make our own decisions, and must have instead been forced by our caregivers to adopt a male identity, is an old idea used to strip away FTM autonomy, and it's an idea which provides the foundation for Private Parts.

Cheryl, the female protagonist of Private Parts, desires George and even strips for him, spending much of the film being sexually assertive and confident. She's certainly bolder than most hapless female victims of this genre, but she's ultimately terrified and physically intimidated by George when he advances towards her with a needle, seeking to inject his blood into her body in lieu of being able to ejaculate like a cis male. While the killers in this film are ultimately both women (George's mother and Cheryl herself), and George ends up being a victim, that doesn't stop this film being incredibly transphobic.

Beyond transphobic tropes, this film also conflates homosexuality with paedophilia, by way of a gay male character named Reverend Moon, who gets visibly excited when asked about the whereabouts of a "clean-cut fifteen year-old boy".

Bauer, a trans male character in the film Vera, played by Brazilian actress Ana Beatriz Nogueira





You can read my full review here. Thank you so much to Adrian for reaching out with this recommendation! I really enjoyed this movie, and it's a groundbreaking piece of trans male media history. I'm absolutely baffled that I'd never heard of it before. This film was inspired by the real-life trans man Anderson Bigode Herzer, but viewers should be aware that, though Herzer committed suicide at the age of twenty, the trans male protagonist of Vera does not do the same.

John Schuck as Gil Kessler in Golden Girls

Golden Girls (S03E07)



United States

Gil Kessler's transition and gender identity is played as a joke. From the beginning of the episode, a main character states that she could tell something was "wrong" with Gil, and this is apparently confirmed when he outs himself as a transsexual, needlessly revealing his birth name to a room of people. He is characterised as wimpy, effeminate, and weak, the implication being that he is neither a real man nor a particularly impressive one. This is an offensive depiction of female-to-male transsexuals. Golden Girls was not as LGBT+ friendly as I have been led to believe.

A White American trans man named Lou Sullivan

Lou Sullivan and Dr. Ira Pauly

1988, 1989, 1990


United States

Lou Sullivan was a White American transsexual man who was both an FTM pioneer and a gay activist. In these interviews, Sullivan discusses transitioning and fighting for the rights of gay trans people, which was a controversial concept in a context where all trans individuals were expected to be heterosexual. He also discusses his childhood, his transition, living with HIV, and all aspects of his private life. Even as his health began to degrade due to AIDS-related complications, he continued to offer insights and engage in advocacy. To get some perspective on the work done by previous generations, to fight for the right to self-identify in any way preferred, I would highly recommend giving this series a watch. Thank you to Kasper for reaching out and providing this resource! 

These interviews are groundbreaking. Hearing Sullivan's voice and story is so important. Trans men have often been erased from retellings of trans history, but we've always been here, and we've always made an impact. Many people have spoken up to credit Lou Sullivan's accomplishments, including trans activist Max Wolf Valerio, who wrote in 2007, "Lou was a writer and capable of standing up for what he saw as truth. He was a gay transsexual man, before this was even allowed or recognized. He is also the person who helped to change that, and now being gay is no longer an issue if you want to begin transition." A very USA-centric statement, certainly, but Sullivan's impact should be recognised regardless.

You can watch all of the interviews here, courtesy of Internet Archive. You should be aware that the interviews include gender-related language which, while normal in Sullivan's context, could be offensive to you in the modern-day. And he does discuss some things which could be quite upsetting, depending on your experiences.

A White American trans man named Henry Rubin




United States

This is an interview with a female-to-male transsexual named Henry S. Rubin, who identifies himself as previously being a lesbian and describes the complexity of evolving identities. He says, “It’s very difficult to walk around in a world that perceives that there are only two genders and two sexes.” He speaks about the diversity of women, about the disconnect between his body and his gender, and the narrow expectations placed upon men. He also addresses the perception that he is a “traitor to the cause”, referencing feminism, insisting that “all men aren’t the enemy”. He talks about the neglect of female-to-male transsexuals, specifically regarding surgical alteration of FTM genitalia, expressing frustrations also discussed in documentaries like Southern Comfort. You can watch the interview here.

Leslie Feinberg in the documentary Outlaw




United States

The synopsis is as follows: "Leslie Feinberg, a self-identified "gender outlaw" who has spent much of zir life passing as a man, speaks with passion and intelligence about zir experiences in this video manifesto. Raw and confrontational, this film asks its audience to examine their assumptions about the "nature" of gender and calls for more sensitivity and awareness of the human rights and the dignity of transgendered people. Feinberg is the author of Stone Butch Blues, an account of a working-class lesbian who passes as a man." You can view the trailer and rent the documentary here.

A Japanese trans man named Tatsu, sitting with his girlfriend

Shinjuku Boys




This documentary follows three Japanese people, one of them a medically-transitioning trans man, as they work in an LGBT bar. Gender identity, sexuality, and complicated relationships to gender roles are discussed. All three interviewees identify as Onabe (alternatively spelled Onnabe), which is a diverse term for trans men and "women who live as men", including people who might identify (in Western terms) as non-binary individuals or butch lesbians. Shinjuku Boys is a wonderful film that, while sad at many points, is an enriching insight into a unique trans culture. I highly recommend it. This is a part of FTM history that should be more widely appreciated.

One of the sweetest parts of this documentary is a scene where Tatsu, a hormonally-transitioning trans man, is getting a haircut from a barber who is very accepting. The pair laugh together and casually discuss Tatsu’s changing appearance. I also love a conversation involving Tatsu and his girlfriend, where the pair discuss their relationship and the emotional connection which allowed Tatsu to finally feel comfortable being naked with a woman. Tatsu’s girlfriend talks about being pressured by her parents to marry a man who can impregnate her, but she insists, “With or without a penis, Tatsu is Tatsu. It wouldn’t make any difference.” Tatsu recalls that, when they had sex for the first time, she told him, “There’s nothing to worry about. If you take your clothes off, you just haven’t got a penis. Apart from that, you don’t look any different from a man. Don’t worry.” How wonderful!

Gaish, another interviewee, describes his gender by saying, “I don’t think I’m a girl, and I don’t think I’m a boy… There are all kinds of Onabe”. So, it’s clear that not all Onabe identify as men in the way that Tatsu does, and for some it is more complicated.

The most upsetting moments in this documentary involve Gaish, particularly a conversation where he discusses the fact than an ex-girlfriend of his would’ve been “an outcast” if she’d committed to living her life alongside him. “It was better for her to marry and lead a normal life, rather than be with me,” he says, “That’s what I thought. So, we split up… By law, I’m alone. If I think about that, where’s the fun in living? If I think about it, I wish I’d never been born.” That in itself is very sad, but what I noticed during my rewatch is that Gaish recalls being only 15 years old when he was in this “relationship”, and the woman who dated him was his teacher. While I obviously can’t know the full context of Gaish’s life, you should proceed with caution if that conversation might distress you, because (although Gaish does not describe the dynamic in such a way) it certainly sounds like abuse.

You can watch Shinjuku Boys here. You can learn more about the term "Onabe" here. Please note that some people consider it an offensive term, so it should only be used if someone identifies with it.

WARNING: Includes the use of an unsafe chest binder. Learn more about unsafe binding here.

Chris, a White French trans boy from the film Ma vie en rose

Ma vie en rose



France, Belgium

This film is primarily about a young trans girl named Ludovic, who suffers humiliation and discrimination from both family and peers, not allowed to femininely express herself around anybody except her grandmother. Another child appears towards the end of the film, who I interpret as a trans boy, but could otherwise be a young butch or simply a tomboy. As Ludovic sits alone, she is approached by this masculine child, who introduces himself as Chris. Chris is aggressive and boisterous, the opposite of Ludovic in every way, and insists that Ludovic play with him. Before that can happen, though, Chris is called back home. When his mother yells "Christine”, it is the first indication we get that Chris is not a cis boy. Chris looks heartbroken and upset.

Later, Chris is forced to wear a dress to his birthday party, and mopes around miserably until Ludovic arrives wearing a pirate costume. Chris demands that Ludovic swap costumes with him and put on the dress. Ludovic, though excited and eager to wear a dress, says no because her parents have threatened and shamed her away from feminine behaviours. Chris forces her to swap costumes with him anyway. When Ludovic’s mother sees that Ludovic has put on a dress, she becomes violent towards her. This shocks everyone at the party, including Chris, who becomes very distressed and tells Ludovic’s mother that Ludovic only swapped costumes because she’d been forced into it.

This is pretty much the extent of Chris’s presence in the film, but his appearance was a pleasant surprise when I watched My Life in Pink originally, as I wasn’t expecting any gender-diverse characters beyond Ludovic. Ultimately, this isn’t a very nice film, and is probably not worth watching unless you have a high tolerance for transphobia, homophobia, and children being mistreated. The trailer for the film doesn’t at all communicate the amount of abuse that Ludovic endures. At one stage in the film, she even attempts suicide by hiding in a freezer.

A White American trans man named Loren Cameron, in the film You Don't Know Dick

You Don't Know Dick: The Courageous Hearts of Transsexual Men



United States

In my opinion, this is a wonderful documentary. It is watchable in full here and stars American trans trailblazers Jamison Green, Max Wolf Valerio (who was born in Germany), and Loren Cameron. I would highly recommend watching it. This film features interviews where trans men discuss all aspects of their lives; romance, surgery, families, parenthood, aspirations, coming out, mental health, sex, religion, libido, etc. At least one of the men is bisexual, one of them is gay, and several are straight. Most are White Americans. The documentary features discussions with family members of the trans men, most of whom are supportive.

The fictional version of Brandon Teena, played by White American actress Hillary Swank in the film Boys Don't Cry

Boys Don't Cry



United States

Though I related to this movie immensely, I would not advise that anybody watch it. Especially not trans men. But I've included it in this list because it was/is historically important, and I'd rather address it openly than allow trans men to be traumatised by certain scenes it contains.

Boys Don't Cry is an unflinching, unforgiving, factually incorrect, whitewashed, graphic depiction of crimes committed against a member of the trans male community. In 1999, it was revolutionary. Nowadays, I would encourage trans men to connect with our history, to deeply research what our people have been through, but the extreme nature of this movie will do nothing more than terrify you.

However, I related to this fictional depiction of Brandon Teena on a very deep level. I have rewatched the film's early scenes (before the violence and rape) and enjoyed them. Hilary Swank, the White American actress who played Brandon Teena, did do an amazing job in the role. Ultimately, I'm glad this film was made, and it is a part of our history... even if we deserve better now.

If you really want to know about Brandon Teena and the bigotry which surrounded him, and you are prepared for incredibly distressing content, The Brandon Teena Story (1998) includes interviews with people who hated him, people who supported him, and people who raped and murdered him. Boys Don't Cry, as distressing as it is, is an easier watch than the real-life documentary produced after the young man's death.

Black on Both Sides: A Racial History of Trans Identity, a book written by C. Riley Snorton, is a recommended read if you would like to understand the erasure of Phillip DeVine (a man of colour) from Boys Don't Cry. It's a dense and difficult read if you're not used to academic language, and it discusses many heavy and confronting themes, but it is good.

WARNING: There is unsafe binding in this movie. Learn more about unsafe binding here.

Two White American non-binary people standing together

Gendernauts: A Journey Through Shifting Identities



United States

One thing that deeply disappointed me about this documentary was a discussion about Brandon Teena, wherein a gender-variant person claimed that they couldn't know how Brandon Teena identified, because he was dead and therefore couldn't be asked. This betrayed a willing ignorance of Brandon's identity, and a determination to ignore his own words. In The Brandon Teena Story (a deeply-distressing documentary released one year before Gendernauts), several interviewees insisted that Brandon identified and lived as a man, and wished only to be known as a male. One of Brandon’s ex-girlfriends, when interviewed, said, “he just wanted everybody to know him as always having being a man”. Another of his ex-girlfriends described him rejecting the idea that his relationships were lesbian, insisting instead that they were straight, because he was a man. Brandon, according to testimonies, would say that he had begun sex change surgeries, to make people believe in the legitimacy of his male identity. Therefore, I was disappointed that a gender-variant person in Gendernauts made an art project speculating about Brandon’s gender, and treating Brandon as a fictional character. It felt cruel, and very similar to the way that cis people refused to take Brandon’s maleness at face value. The motive seemed to be to use Brandon, in death, as a platform to project the artist’s own non-binary experience, rather than respecting Brandon's binary maleness.

That said, I do somewhat recognise the value in Gendernauts. I enjoyed interviews with trans men, ally doctors, and an intersex non-binary person who was particularly articulate and expressive. One of the interviewees I was most impressed by was a woman of colour, named Chrystal Weston, who worked for the DA’s Office as an advocate for LGBT people. I really liked that her education about transgender people included, in her words, transsexuals, transvestites, and both pre-op and post-op individuals. A very progressive understanding for the time.

This documentary definitely gave me mixed feelings. I didn’t like that a trans female interviewee compared all trans people to cyborgs, as part of the “genderfuckery” theme underlying the whole film. I found it dehumanusing and invalidating of my own binary male identity. Plus, one of the interviewees (a cis woman) shamelessly misgendered a trans man. Her key reason for doing so was that he still had a vagina.

Overall, this film is not for binary trans men. The disrespect shown to Brandon Teena is enough to make that clear. I found many of the non-binary interviewees genuinely interesting, but that interest wasn't enough to compensate for the way my own identity was treated. Lastly, please know that this documentary includes the word "hermaphrodite", which is a stigmatising and misleading word which should not be used to describe either intersex people or transsexuals.

The title screen for the experimental short film Phallocy



Experimental Film, Short Film

United States

This short film was made in the late 90s by a trans man named Jay Allen Sennett who was dealing with "confusion and pain" related to his transition and his body. In Phallocy, Jay discusses deciding to transition at the age of 32, and the complex feelings he has about being a man with deep links to a female past. He says, "I ask myself, how does a thirty five year-old man who played as a tomboy, bled like a girl, reared as a lady, fucked like a stone butch lesbian, and dresses like a dandy, become a man? How do I act for this part? Which parts of me should I keep? Throw away?" He goes on to describe having sex with a woman, referring to his prosthetic penises as "tools of the patriarchy", recalling how he cried because he would never be able to ejaculate.

Reflecting upon this short piece later in life, on his website (where the film can also be watched), Jay comments, "Listening to it now, the person I was then is not who I am now. As I’ve said before, learning to love myself as I am is my life’s work. Doing that work day after day has moved me from Phallocy to Truth, which is that I love my transsexual body very much, as it is. Phallocy represents a period in my life I will never forget, and one I’m glad to have moved through."

Paul Millander played by Matt O'Toole in CSI

CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (S01E01, E08, S02E13)

2000, 2002


United States

Thank you very much to Buck for reaching out and letting me know about this show's incredibly transphobic caricature of a trans man. Paul Millander, the highly unrealistic FTM character, is also an intersex serial killer whose gender-ambiguous childhood is framed as the root cause of his aggressive and anti-social mindset in adulthood. Plus, violence and murder are baked into the foundations of why he transitioned and chose to "become a man". He embodies many harmful tropes in one messy, lazy jumbling of poor writing, including a laughable scene where he enters an elevator as "Pauline" (played by a feminine actress) and exits as a fully-transitioned man, having undergone that magical all-at-once sex change which we all definitely have... that apparently changes every single one of our facial features, too... and causes years of testosterone to take effect all at once...

Millander's final episode is titled Identity Crisis. His story ends with him violently murdering his mother before killing himself. His birth certificate, with his previous name on it, is placed near his corpse in an appropriately tacky, cheap way which sums up the character's entire being; he exists only to be intersex, trans, violent, and doomed from the start because his parents forced gender ambiguity onto him. In that way, he is similar to the trans male character in Private Parts (1972). In this article, retrieved using the Internet Archive, the author correctly states that harmful depictions of trans people in crime shows are "contributing to a society that can only see trans people as objects without agency". Further, "no one on the show accepts his male identity as a product of his authentic self. Instead, they regard his gender transition as a product of childhood trauma and his deceptive nature." That sums it up pretty well. And, beyond the transphobia, this is a horrific depiction of an intersex person. You can learn more about intersex people here.

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