We first meet Jackie in A Million Little Things in the episode, "The Lost Sheep," but she most recently had a very poignant moment with Eddie in "Trust Me." The two plays cards at rehab and talk. As they chat, Jackie tells Eddie that he's trying too hard to be what everyone expects him to be, and that he'd probably be happier if he was just himself.
“Maybe, like me, there’s a beautiful person inside. You just have to find her and let her out," Jackie says.
From that conversation alone, it sounds like Jackie has gone through an identity journey of her own, and has come out more comfortable in her own skin.
Is Jackie trans on 'A Million Little Things'?
Jackie confirms that she's transgender in the scene between her and Eddie in rehab as they play cards. While Eddie is struggling to say the word "transgender," Jackie says, "Also, I'm transgender — and I'm collecting threes!" as a way to say that her gender does not solely define her — she contains multitudes. The actress playing Jackie, Bobbi Charlton, is a trans woman who captured her story in the docufilm Finding Bobbi.
According to Finding Bobbi, Bobbi struggled with gender dysphoria for many years before she transitioned, and she did so later in life: Her 50s. Although Bobbi says she was five years old when she was starting to feel like she was in the wrong body, it took a while to come to terms with the fact that she wanted to be a woman, because she identified as a woman.
"The heart of the story is about accepting people who are different from us," producer Ava Karvonen said in an interview with CBC Radio's Adrienne Pan.
For the longest time, people had no idea. "As her brother says in the film, it shows how good of an actor she is — she played the male role exceptionally well for a long time," writer and director Scot Morison (who is Bobbi's cousin) says.
Bobbi is a British Columbian actor who's been in shows like The Magicians (she plays Silver) and Family Law (she portrays Jerri), and while she has a somewhat small role in A Million Little Things, we hope to see more of her in future projects.
Although there's definitely a lot of room to grow, it's awesome to see more trans representations on TV. Shows like Euphoria, Supergirl, The Good Doctor, The OA, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, and of course Orange Is the New Black showcase trans actors and characters. Representation like this is vital, as extremely troubling anti-trans laws are being passed and making the world a more dangerous place for not only trans adults, but trans children.
Let's keep on having more of these conversations (and trans characters who aren't just played by guest actors, either).
Watch new episodes of A Million Little Things every Wednesday at 10 p.m. EST on ABC.
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