Elliot Page ‘proud’ of the way The Umbrella Academy season three handles his transition
The Umbrella Academy will handle Elliot Pages’ character Number Seven transition early on in season three – and Page himself approved.
Now with the third season having dropped on Wednesday (22 June) Page has shared his thoughts about how the show drew inspiration from his off-screen coming out.
“When we first talked about it, [Blackman] seemed really excited about incorporating it into the show,” Page told Seth Meyers on Late Night on Tuesday (21 July).
Trans author Thomas McBee “came on board and helped out and I feel proud of it and I’m excited for people to see it,” Page added.
Number Seven, otherwise known as Viktor Hargreeves, will see his transition sensitively handled in the second episode
With the words of his romantic interest Sissy Cooper ringing in his ears, Viktor will swing by a barbershop as he looks at photographs of men’s haircuts in the window. “You don’t even notice the box that you’re in until someone comes along and lets you out,” Sissy says.
And that person to free Viktor is Viktor himself. He goes to a hotel where his siblings are and reintroduces himself – they ask who Victor is.
“I am,” he replies, “it’s who I’ve always been.”
“Being with Sissy, I don’t know, she opened something in me. Showed me I’d never be free hiding from who I really am,” he later tells Alison in another scene. “And after losing her I realised I just can’t live in that box anymore. I won’t.”
Looking at himself in a shop window as they walk, he adds: “You know I always hated mirrors? Thought everybody looked so strange in their skin.
“I guess that’s not true.”
Elliot Page feels the same. He told Meyer: “What I want to focus on right now, and has been so extraordinary, is the degree of joy that I feel, the degree of presence that I feel. I feel a way that I really never thought possible for a long, long time.
“That’s really what I’m focusing on and embracing the most.”
“Of course, some moments can be overwhelming,” he added. “[And] I feel like it’s so unfortunate because we’re all on the same team here, you know?
“Whether you’re trans, non-binary, cis, we all have these expectations and these limits and constraints … to me it would be so special for us to all be able to connect and talk about how similar we all are.”
McBee told Esquire in early June that Blackman was determined to incorporate Page’s transition even though they were due to go into production in only two weeks.
“Steve was passionate about incorporating Elliot’s real-life transition into the show,” McBee said. “It was right for the actor as well as the character because it deepened existing themes, Steve told me.
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“The only problem? The scripts were locked.
“Season three was delicately arced out, and they were set to go into production in less than two weeks. The job would be to graft a transition story over the intricate plotting of an ensemble show.”
Production hiccups aside, there was one other thing that Blackman wanted before going ahead with the transition plot – Page’s blessing.
“Elliot and I had a long conversation about when and how Viktor may have come to discover his gender identity, and in what ways he might embody that identity in season three,” McBee said,
“Steve and I used Elliot’s insights as a jumping-off point to form and neatly overlay an economical narrative on those existing scenes – one that echoed where Elliot was in his own transition process at the time of shooting.”