The Blend: Lisa Ling Looks Back At Trans Subjects, Laverne Cox Returns To ‘Katie’ And Equality In ‘The Case Against 8′

by | June 5, 2014 at 9:59 AM | General, Katie, Katie Couric, LGBT, Major Crimes

Our America With Lisa Ling:” In tonight’s episode, Ling revisits some of the transgender subjects she first talked to three years ago including Ty, who went down a dark path of excessive partying, and the family who are accepting their child being trans. As always, Ling shows as many sides of the subject as possible and provides a captivating portrait of everyone involved. (Thursdays, 10pm, OWN)

“True Blood:” Having gotten a sneak peek at the first two episodes of the season, all I can say is that the same chaotic fun is in the air as we pick up where we left off last season with the humans and the vamps having to band together to survive. But which two hot men in the cast end up locking lips in the second episode of the season? You’ll have to watch to find out but let me tell you…it’s is off the charts HOT! (Season premiere, July 22nd on HBO)

The 2014 Tony Nominees on Empire State Building (Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)

Tony Awards 2014:” While many of the people involved on Broadway wouldn’t be where they are without an educator who started them on their path, the newly created ““Tony Honor for Excellence in Theatre Education presented by Carnegie Mellon University” will be a part of Sunday’s show at Radio City Music Hall. Two CMU alums – Zachary Quinto and Matt Bomer - will be onstage to introduce the new award and explain how educators can be nominated for the first award, to be given out at next year’s show. Good stuff, right? (Check back tomorrow for my Tony Preview!)

Laverne Cox Returns… to “Katie” next Tuesday to talk more about her journey since her last visit when the actress, in her cool and collected fashion, cleared up some misconceptions about trans people to Ms. Couric. Though the last visit wasn’t as heated as the press made it out to be, it goes to show once again just how well-spoken Cox is on the subject and also keeps her ego out of the discussion. From having talking to her on the red carpet at both the LA GLAAD Awards in April and again at the NY GLAAD Awards last month, she fully understands that people have questions and this is new territory. No wonder she’s on the cover of the latest Time Magazine, right? (“Katie” airs weekdays, check local listings)

Graham Patrick Martin & Mary McDonnell in 'Major Crimes' (TNT)

Major Crimes:” The TNT crime drama is back for season 3 on Monday and things are going to be taking big leaps forward in terms of the coming out story of teen Rusty (Graham Patrick Martin). I was on set earlier this week and talked to Martin and his co-stars G.W. Bailey and Mary McDonnell as well as series creator/showrunner James Duff about what we’ll see in the new season. Watch for my story on that storyline on Monday.

HBO Documentaries: Two important documentaries are coming this month on HBO that show both the legal and personal side of the gay experience. First,it’s not common knowledge that Academy Award-winner Robert De Niro’s father was gay but the actor/filmmaker has paid tribute to his father with a film, “Remembering The Artist: Robert De Niro Sr.“ The film premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and will air on HBO on June 9th. Later in the month, the legal side of marriage equality is the subject of “The Case Against 8” which documents the long journey to get the laws changed so two people in love – who also happen to be of the same sex – can marry. You’ll be front and center with the workings of lawyers Ted Olson and David Boies as well as the plaintiffs in the case. The film will be in theaters starting June 6th and air on HBO on June 22nd. (I spoke with filmmakers Ben Cotner & Ryan White so keep an eye out for that interview)

“The L Word” Legacy: As I told you in last week’s Pride Month Preview, Showtime is currently re-airing groundbreaking series like “The L Word” and “Queer As Folk” and I had the pleasure of chatting with “L Word” creator Ilene Chaiken yesterday about the legacy. Watch for that interview next week as well as my chat with actress Sharon Gless, who talked to me about her role on “Queer As Folk.”

Finally, Outfest 2014 kicks off on July 10th and the entire roster of films was released yesterday. The festival is one of my favorites (not only because I live in Los Angeles!) and not only presents some of the best talent out there but also gives a voice to new and emerging talents. To check out what films you’ll want to see, visit the Outfest website for the calendar.

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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