Posted by: mzbitca | November 18, 2008

Tyra offers ANTM contest sex reassignment surgery

American’s Next Top Model made news this past session for having it’s first transgendered contestant on the show.  Isis King participated but did not win in the past season.  She was recently on the Tyra Banks show talking about how she was saving up money for the surgery when Tyra suprised her.  

Tyra Banks surprises Isis King, the first transgender contestant on America’s Next Top Model, with sex reassignment surgery in an episode of her talk show to air Tuesday.

“This is not happening!” King, who was born Darrell Walls, says when Banks introduces her to Dr. Marci Bowers, a leading gender reassignment surgeon who has experienced the surgery herself. Bowers is paying for the surgery.

“[I feel] like I’m about to wake up,” says King – who lived in a homeless shelter in Maryland before trying out for the show.


I’ve never watched ANTM so I can’t comment much on how the issue was treated on the show. I don’t recall many enraged blogs so I assume that it was at least not exploited.  I am iffy on Tyra but occasionally she does some good things and I can’t help but think this is one of them.

Tyra is helping Isis finally feel complete for the first time and is giving her something she has admitted to wanting for the first time.



  1. I was amazed at how respectfully it was handled. All the judges (Tyra, the Jays, the photographer, etc) treated it like it didn’t even matter — and the photographer, in an outside interview, pointed out that fabulous transwomen making it big in modeling is NOT news inside the industry.

    One or two of the girls were really scornful — and the first one to be kicked off was OPENLY hateful and catty, I was so glad to see her go — but several were friendly, and one, who’s made the final three (I haven’t watched the last ep yet), was everything one could ever dream of in an ally. Supportive, friendly, open, and even kept Isis company and in good spirits while she injected her estrogen.

  2. […] Bitca of What a Crazy Random Happenstance writes about Tyra Banks’ offering of gender reassignment surgery to Isis King, the transgendered contestant on America’s Next Top […]

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