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Zarf Is Must See TV

3/9/2007 5:09 PM PST BY TMZ STAFF

Housewives across the country got a little lesson in transgenderism on Friday's episode of "All My Children."

The soap furthered the storyline of transgendered lesbian character Zarf/Zoe's quest to transition from male to female. On today's educational and partially unscripted episode, Zarf, played by male actor Jeffrey Carlson, ventured to a support group where he encountered trans persons, played by genuine transgendered actors in various stages of undergoing the change. Janice Dickinson must have been unavailable, but a Sandra Oh lookalike was!

For a brief moment, the ABC soap diverged from their laughable Satin Slayer storyline to expose audiences to more diverse characters in a positive light. Let's hope this noble effort doesn't turn into the serial's killer, or kill the serial.


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I just happen to know who God hates and who will go to hell when they die. It's not gays and it's not transgendered people. God hates self-righteous, sanctimonious, bigoted, bible-thumping, provincial, ignorant, Bush-loving, war-mongering, Fox-watching, trailer trash. They will be punished on Judgment Day. I know this for a fact because She told me so.

2753 days ago


When I read that storyline was coming I made a permanent switch to Y&R and Days. I'm a housewife with three young children. ZERO desire to see tranny crap anytime let alone during daytime. ABC has turned into the most controvercial gay/lesbian/tranny network station. The other networks produce much, much better quality shows without the need for reaching out to segment groups. Frons is an ass. But, I appreciate his sicko mind turning me on to much better shows!!!
ABC is now blocked from our DirectV televisons for good. They can pander to minority groups. Believe it or not, I'm not racist. I just don't have a desire to watch storylines that are of no interest to me or listen to Rosie trash anything she can get her hands on while being so obviously dysfunctional (no, not talking about gay). She claims to have gone into a "deep depression" due to Columbine". Sure. Sounds to be as though she's looking to blame a trigger instead of her own messed up childhood/life she didn't deal with before.
The last thing my husband and I want is for our kids to walk past a TV and see a man dressed as a woman. It's out job to educate our children on the variety of people we have not, ABC daytime.
For those promoters of this crap, say what you will. I'm being a responsible parent to my young children and choosing to watch programming geared toward me.

2753 days ago

El Barto    

I've said it before and I'll say it again: if you don't like what's on, change the channel.

The amount of hatred here is sad. So you're all right with murder and adultery storylines but you think a story about a character making a decision and personal journey that harms nobody is the worst thing ever?


2753 days ago

Somebody , shoot it! Quick!    

Is Jeffrey Carlson really gay in real life?

2753 days ago


#95, Just a Thought: You're right. The DSM-lV classified transgender as a mental illness. The treatment protocol is extensive psychiatric therapy prior to any discussion of a separate issue: sexual reassignment surgery. It's not only a topic of no iterest to me personally but, it's not educational if not portrayed accurately. Less than 10% of trannies go for sex reassignment surgery. I'm not ignorant of this issue. I just don't want to watch it. So, I'm doing the responsible thing: blocking ABC/ changing the channel, not watching.
As a prior fan of ABC daytime since I was about 12, I highly recommend Y&R. I thinks it's a fast paced soap with a nice coorelation to the young and older cast members. I wish I started watching it sooner.

2753 days ago


Right on Barb! You said it all so well. And to antiquegirl - your comments are so full of hate and anger that I've felt moved to say a prayer for you. And, no, I'm not a bigoted, ignorant Bible-thumping, provincial, trailer trash. And for your information, God is incapable of hate or anger. God is LOVE!

2753 days ago


The problem with AMC is that since there is no diversity in Pine Valley(save one lesbian, two African-Americans and one autistic teenager), any character that is not straight and lily white, tends to be so over the top that the point that is attempting to be made is lost. Pair that up with horrifically bad story lines, such as the Satin Slayer snore fest, and it becomes incredibly difficult to get the message across. I am thrilled that AMC is willing to bring in more diverse characters, however, the writers need create stronger characters that viewers want to care about. I like Zarf/Zoe better now, but when the character was first introduced I thought he was a boring poser. I think that bringing diversity to daytime television is a good thing, but the AMC writers keep doing it in such a way that it comes across as preachy and more than a little condescending.

2753 days ago


#106, Kitten. Thanks. Your comments are expressed wayyy better than mine were. I actually do feel the same way.
I had a very long, stressful day. My comments were too rude and not making the point I really wanted to make. Thanks, again.

2753 days ago


#105: Newsey, I make the assumption that Jeffrey Carlson is gay because when I googled him awhile ago he was mentioned as being on of Rosie O'Donnell's first gay cruise.

2753 days ago


#97, Valpo: While we can agree to disagree about liking the storyline, I do not understand why you think INCORRECT information is educational. It's horrificly harmful. There are several sources to better understand transgender, gender euphoria, sexual reassignment and other issues in this particular catagory. If interested: DSM-lV, The Merck Manual are great for explaining this medically. It IS a true mental illness that has outlined medical protocol. If you google Gender Identity Disorder you'll find several sites, too. Portraying a mental illness as anything but, is dishonest, false 'education' and false comprehension of this illness. Though AMC is a soap, it has a responsibility to provide accurate information to viewers. Of course, shows like this throw in things for drama, too. I just think it's awful that people will think as you will: education about transgender. AMC IS NOT PORTRAYING THIS AS ANYTHING OTHER THAN ENTERTAINMENT. Please check for yourself before you believe what you see on AMC.

2753 days ago


The actor who plays Zarf is wonderful, and it's a thought-provoking storyline. Back in the day, AMC was writing storylines that got everyone talking. I like this storyline better than the one where Erica's embryo that she thought she had aborted was planted in another woman's body and it turned out to be Josh. Sheesh. Yes, Bianca and Babe are preachy at times, but it doesn't take away the power of the storyline. As for some of the extremely hateful and nutty posts on here, can't we all just get along?

2753 days ago


I think we'll all be able to get along when everyone can voice their personal opinions without one calling another names. Perhaps "extremely hateful" and "nutty" words used to describe an opinion different from yours shouldn't be used. There's no reason to ever attack how someone feels. We come from diverse backgrounds. We have a multitude of beliefs based on family values, personal experiences and decisions to choose what we all feel may be right or wrong.
Diversity must be respected (not agreed with) before we can all get along.

2753 days ago


the amt of hate here is just so sad - i stopped watching ABC soaps when they starte ddisrespecting fans an dkilling off beloved characters to favor violence, violence and more violence. the news is bad enough, i have no desire to watch peopel getting killed and killerrs made heroes - i remember when soaps were interesting and entertaining.

i hapened to catch about 5 minutes of the transgender sessions and wish i had seen it all - it was thoughtful , well done and heartbreaking.

you people need to look past your anger , hate and fear of what you dont know and DO know that there ARE gay peope in your life - YOU just dont know it, because of the hate that you spew. sad.

thought this wont bring me back to ABC soaps, congrats to them for something interesting and diffferent .. and non -viloent ( so far anyway)

2753 days ago

Amy Silverman    

This movie is TOOOO fuuny Sordid Wives-with Delta Burke,Beth Grant,Leslie Jordan,Beau Bridges & Olivia Newton Jon How did this EVER miss 12 midnight movies??? Too Funny & crazy???

2753 days ago


The opening of the trans group meeting was very real, but it went down hill pretty fast. While this was an un-scripted scene, the editing hacked up any significance the group of trans folks had to offer to the ZZ story line. When ZZ was asked to tell her story, there were lots of eerrr, errrr, eeeerrr which completely broke the flow of realism. It also goes to show how difficult it is to fake the emotional realties of sharing being born gender different un-scripted in real time.

Jenny B. did as well as the situation could have allowed, then again, this is day time TV and one should not expect much from this.

IMO, the AMC writers have bitten far more than they can chew with trying to deal with the transgender story line. It has not worked well at all so far and every time they try to make big news or try something innovative with the trans story line, it comes off as less than real and feels forced to covey the reality of this process.

What they should be doing with the transgender story line is focus on ZZ's self discovery, interactions with other PV folks and stop making ZZ a martyr for some of the difficulties and realities of being born transgender. You can only whack the trannie so many times before it gets really, really old. This is a journey of self discovery and not just how culture and society might view or treats trans folks.

2753 days ago
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