‘L Word’ comes full circle

After the first couple lackluster episodes of this season’s L Word the weekly parties, formerly themed wine and food planned festivities, dwindled to housemate gatherings far from the original Sunday air dates. That’s why I didn’t catch the best L Word episode in a long time, perhaps ever, until last night.

This is totally me and my buddies on a Friday night. Except we’re bigger, like, grown up sized…

Yes, the main characters all still look like rail-thin Barbies prancing on toes of cocaine-fuled Jimmy Choos but at least they acted more like the lesbians I see around me every day (for better or worse). I think writer/director Angela Robinson, despite or because of, (I can’t really tell), also directing teenage lesbian super-spy romp D.E.B.S., knows how real lesbian communities behave.

Bette is rightfully on her high horse, for once, when she meets the white actress chosen to play her in Lez Girls. And the “Do I still love her or have I moved on?” dynamic between her and Tina is spot on. I might actually go so far as to call the tenderness of Jodi assisting a very drunk Tina to her ex-lover’s couch, and Bette’s subsequent look of longing, confusion and pain, heart-wrenching. Well, at the very least it was genuine lesbian melodrama.

Jenny’s annoyance is tempered by her drunken seduction of Nikki. It’s silly. They’re high and they both can’t stop laughing. They know how cheesy their playacting, leading up to the inevitable is, yet they embrace the awkwardness. This is seduction in the real world. And the in-closet sex is the kind of messy hotness I can actually see happening. (Yes, I have been walked in on during a party in a compromising position so I totally understand).

And, though the clash between Tasha and Alice was forseeable and inevitable, I come across these philosophical arguments often in queer communities. Whenever asked who I am most like on the show, I always answer Alice, not just because she is a web writer but also because she’s usually the only one with any integrity. So it’s pretty obvious that I would side with her in this argument. Trouble is, I would never have initially taken the illicit video, because the baller hadn’t proved himself hypocritical yet. And so I never would have invaded his privacy in the first place.


But my absolute favorite part of the show is reserved for Shane. If she were only a pretty face that would be plenty for some. But her baked party treats, i.e. gay brownies, also prove she’s fun. That party reminded me very much of the hilarious people I choose to chill with myself, singing and dancing ridiculously, jumping half clothed into the neighbor’s pool.

But Shane’s best scene most certainly had to be with her Lez Girls doppleganger. The curiously asexual actress who plays Shane, Kate Moenning, is notorious for skirting the “Are you gay in real life?” question. When backed into a corner she usually points to men. So when the actress (double actress?) who plays Shawn fumbles delightfully over her “I’m straight…I have a boyfriend…I’m not gay…I’m gay for pay…” speech, and Shane rolls her eyes unmercifully the audience can only do the same, while simultaneously congratulating Kate for making such fun of herself.

And the self-abuse appears to not only continue, but become more blatant next week. In a move that’s so very Lesbians on Ecstasy (research them, love them, it will take a minute to understand their remixed brilliance), the upcoming episode shows Jenny railing about the poor choice of Vancouver as a shooting locale. Indeed, the lush greenness of our Pacific Northwest doesn’t really look like LA. And yes, Vancouver is where the L Word is actually filmed, though most of its stars live in sunny SoCal.

This ability to laugh at itself is quickly becoming the L Word’s greatest strength. Jenny and her movie are so bad, as the show has been of late, that this irreverence might, ironically save the entire production.

Comments are closed.