1. Maura is born
Season 2, Ep. 10, "Grey Green Brown & Copper"
When Season 2 begins, Maura's sister tells her that their mother, Rose, deserves to leave the world without ever having to see her son looking like this. But the flashbacks to Rose's time in Berlin reveal a very different story. Their aunt Gittel was trans, and Rose embraced her. By the time Maura does visit her mother, the flashbacks have placed the timeline in Los Angeles. Gittel has been killed by Nazis, some years have passed, and Rose is giving birth. Rose's husband says he knows their child will be a girl. Back in the present, Maura, Ari, Maura's reluctant sister, and Rose, who is no longer speaking, go to the beach. As Maura stands next to her mother, her sister, and her child, she has no idea of her family's past, that her aunt was trans and that her mom would have accepted her. We see Maura being born and the doctor says, "It's a boy." We end back on Maura, looking out at the sea. She's not a boy; she never was.
Transparent succeeded in its simpler moments, when characters eat dinner, talking over each other with humor and emotion. But its greatest moments of transcendence were like this, when time periods crossed, formal risks were taken, and a new language to represent queer and trans experiences was invented. As a trans woman, Transparent can be a tough show to revisit. Tambor's performance feels strained, the way even the most accomplished cis male actors always will, and his behavior on the show's set makes it even harder to separate the man from the character. But in this moment, when Maura is born, that all fades away. In this moment, there's just Maura Pfefferman, a woman who was always meant to be.