Disability, Intersex Identity, and Transgender Identity in The Orville’s About a Girl

In case you missed it – or were trying to avoid it – The Orville is a new thinly-veiled Star Trek spoof created by (and starring) Seth MacFarlane. Yes, the creator of Family Guy is writing sci-fi.  At first, I thought the show was what I feared: it’s a little like your least favorite fan boy tried to write satire, but ended up spilling beer and heterosexuality everywhere.  However, somewhere between the dick jokes (and there are a lot of dick jokes), MacFarlane decided to follow in Gene Rodenberry’s footsteps.  In its third episode About a Girl, The Orville does what sci-fi does best: think through contemporary social issues.  About a Girl provides commentary on intersex surgeries. The only problem is, MacFarlane doesn’t seem to know that’s what he’s doing.

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