Dublin actor makes history playing trans character on nation’s most popular soap opera

Jack Murphy, 27, just made history with his debut as newcomer Ryan Donnelly on the nation's most popular RTE soap opera 'Fair City.'

It's a long way from Glenroe for Jack, who will be the country's first transgender soap star.

“This is the first transgender character in Irish soap which is huge for Ireland. And as someone transgender myself, this is huge for me as well,” he told the Irish Sun.

The Dublin man told the press that he has identified as trans since he was 19, having had a rough go of it in school for many years where he was often bullied for being an out lesbian until he graduated in 2008.

“I came out as trans when I was 19. There wasn’t really a moment when I started changing my clothes because I always wore boy's’ clothes, but I suppose when I started ­testosterone my looks started to change.

“I always wore men’s style clothes, I was never a girly girl or wearing girl’s clothes. I knew what I was, I just didn’t have a word for it.”

Nerves kicking in now! #faircity #jackmurphy pic.twitter.com/s26aeTH5BJ

— Jack Murphy (@jackshaunmurphy) September 24, 2017

“The Marriage Equality was brilliant and so was the Gender Recognition Act. There is still a long way to go but it is to get people to understand and educate them about transgender.”

Jack told the press that his parents and friends have been very supportive, and looked forward to his debut on the nationally broadcasted show.

“I would love to be the person some young trans kid looks up to so I can say there is light at the end of the tunnel,” he concluded.

After first night nerves Jack tweeted that he delighted with how his debut played on air. On the night he also received multiple supportive tweets from the soaps devoted fan base.

Such a good first episode if I do say so myself! Off to sleep now and in the morning I'm getting another tattoo added to my sleeve. Night 🤙🏻

— Jack Murphy (@jackshaunmurphy) September 25, 2017

Not all the comments directed at him were supportive. Some were openly transphobic.

This is the shit I get every single day. I literally feel like an alien. #tinder #fml pic.twitter.com/8VnDHymOW8

— Jack Murphy (@jackshaunmurphy) September 26, 2017

But other commenters enjoyed the show and were particularly grateful for his representation.

I just received the most heartwarming message from an Irish mother of a 5 year old trans boy,thanking me for showing him what bravery is :')

— Jack Murphy (@jackshaunmurphy) September 25, 2017