This episode centers on the beginning half of a road trip Caitlyn, 65, embarks on to San Francisco with some fellow transgender women. The group buses off to a secluded cabin, where they hope to escape from prying paparazzi, who have been particularly aggressive since Caitlyn’s Vanity Fair cover came out.
Before the road trip, the episode begins with Caitlyn talking to stepdaughter Kim Kardashian and her friend Malika about her insecurity with the tone of her voice. Caitlyn reveals that she has been considering surgery, or at least vocal training to try and feminize her voice. She addresses that in many cases transgender people don’t feel comfortable with their natural voice and opt to try and alter it, which can often be successful.
The episode also highlights the hesitancy some of the transgender community feels having Caitlyn as the new advocate for them. One transgendered woman, Chandi, expresses concern over Caitlyn’s grasp on how tough it can be for some since Caitlyn has had such a welcomed and privileged transition.
This is further demonstrated when Caitlyn learns from another transgender woman that it is very common for people in the trans-community to get involved in sex work in order to pay for their treatments. In addition, it can often be hard for the trans-community to obtain the hormone pills needed to transition. The other women of the community are well aware of these unfortunate truths, however Caitlyn is visibly surprised to learn this, which emphasizes how much Caitlyn has to learn about her new community.
Caitlyn’s voice isn’t the only sensitive subject touched on in this episode. When the women arrive to the cabin in San Francisco they all get into their bathing suits and go in the hot tub. Caitlyn is obviously hesitant and chooses to forgo the hot tub, as she is “in no rush” to expose herself in that way quite yet. It is clear that this is another hurtle that many transgendered people face.
Two of the trans-women who are staying at the cabin with Caitlyn talk one-on-one. Here, they further express their concern about Caitlyn’s understanding of the trans-community. Jenny, one of the women, worries that Caitlyn thinks transitioning into a woman is just “a party,” focusing on hair and makeup, instead of realizing the bigger issues that the majority of trans people face.
The episode does a good job of showing the joy and freedom that Caitlyn feels as she embraces her true identity, while at the same time bringing things back to reality and making it clear that this is not the reality for many going through transition. Further establishing that Caitlyn’s publicity should not be wasted on solely what she is wearing and her stylish hairstyles.
At the end of the episode, the ladies head over to an HRC (Human Rights Campaign) meeting, where they go to listen to other transgender peoples’ stories. During the meeting, one woman tells of how she had to resort to sex work. This was her only way of paying the bills after she was fired from 4 different jobs once they found out she was trans. The women at the meeting also make it clear that Caitlyn is very privileged when it comes to transitioning, as many of them are still trying to gain access to the things they require to properly transition (hormones, etc.)
It is obviously hard and a lot of pressure for Caitlyn to try and relate to the horrible stories, but she does show determination to be the advocate that the trans-community needs.
The show is once again worlds apart from what we see on Keeping Up with the Kardashians. You can tell that when Caitlyn agreed to do this docu-series, she was adamant on creating a purpose behind each episode, greater than just getting a inside look into what her life looks like now.
It seems it is challenging for other people within the trans-community to be comfortable with Caitlyn as an advocate as she is so privileged and doesn’t face many of the horrible realities that most trans face. However, Caitlyn is aware of this and is determined to do her best to learn as much as she can and bring light to the important issues, even if she will never have to face them.
Next week, Caitlyn gets emotional as she explains to the women her desire to make a difference in the community.
In addition, she opens up about her sexuality with the women saying she can “appreciate the male form.”
Although, this may just be a way to draw in viewers for next week, because Caitlyn has previously said she was attracted to women and has a speculated romance with fellow transgender actress Candis Cayne.