Soft flesh on Slash: a rare series on an intersex character

Crowned with the Prize for Best Series for the French competition at the Series Mania festival, “Tender Chair” created by Yaël Langmann is a proposal as there are few in the world of television. On Slash and France 5.

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Representation is a subject at the heart of American fiction. In France, cinema is lagging behind, but television is getting into it little by little, notably through the dailies. For example, Eliott in Ici Tout Commence, a character through whom non-binarity is approached, among other things. Slash is also active around these questions thanks to their numerous programs intended for a young audience, but not only. Their new series, Soft Chair, is distinguished by its sensitivity and accuracy on a subject that does not exist on the screens: intersex.

To write, the creator and author Yaël Langmann was inspired by an encounter that upset her adolescence. At the age of 17, she learns that one of her friends was born in an intersex body: neither quite girl, nor quite boy. The screenwriter transposes this memory to tell, with her words, the story of Sasha.

Composed of 10 episodes, the series follows a quest for identity and meaning for teenagers. Through the portrait of Sasha and a beautiful gallery of secondary characters, Soft Chair opens the doors to the general public of a subject that is misunderstood and often observed through the medical prism. Slash

Angèle Metzger in “Tender Flesh”.

Yaël Langmann – who co-directs the series with Jérémy Mainguy – is interested in the journey of a person in an intersex situation without ever taking a voyeuristic, miserable and objectifying look. Here, empathy prevails. If everything works, it is partly thanks to this precise writing, but also a beautiful distribution.

In the leading role, Angèle Metzger instantly captures the viewer’s attention. Around her, Saül Benchetrit, Marin Judas, Paola Locatelli, Lena Garrel, Régis N’Kissi Moggzi and Andréa Furet form an authentic group to which it is very easy to become attached. Some will recognize Daphné Bürki – astonishing – in the role of the mother and Grégoire Colin in that of the father.

The great success of tender flesh is to lift taboos with humanity and delicacy. The series manages to reach as many people as possible and create a sense of identification that goes beyond the main character’s journey.

Soft Chair is available in full on Slash from 6 p.m. and broadcast on France 5 on September 23 at 9 p.m.

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