A Brief History of Lesbian Sex on TV: From Late Night Hair-Brushing to Primetime Scissoring

With Gillian Anderson’s Sex Education landing on Netflix, it feels like the perfect time to gather our TV Team and talk about sex on TV, specifically queer sex on TV, and its evolution over these many years. We’ve come a long way, and it’s as obvious in the way sex between women is portrayed on-screen as it is in the sheer number of lesbian and bisexual TV characters we have compared to ten years ago. So Valerie Anne, Natalie, Kayla, Carmen, and Heather got together to talk about their introduction to lesbian on TV, how far we’ve come, and where we hope to boldly go.


What’s the first TV show you remember seeing two women hook up on?

Valerie: Buffy the Vampire Slayer! Looking back as an adult I can see all the implied times that happened beforehand, but it wasn’t until “Once More with Feeling” that I remember knowing without a doubt that Willow and Tara were doin’ it. The “I’m Under Your Spell” number is not subtle, but it was also so loving and sweet and gentle (and musical!). Now that I’m thinking about it, it’s probably at least one of the reasons I watched that episode almost daily for years. Hmm.

Friends (NBC), 1997

Kayla: Okay, I have two answers. The first is Friends, even though it doesn’t really count because Friends definitely never showed two women even close to hooking up (although Winona Ryder kissing Jennifer Aniston is something I’ll never forget). Susan and Carol never got to even talk about smashing in the way that everyone else on that show did but BUT there is one scene at the very end of “The One Without The Ski Trip” where Ross interrupts Carol in the middle of the night and asks if she was sleeping. She says no, has very obvious sex hair, and WIPES HER MOUTH. Somehow that was the exact moment that I became aware of eating out as a concept. Even though it didn’t show it at all! I just… knew what Carol had been doing.

And yeah, Friends was a super hetero show (my guess is that going down on women had PROBABLY been referenced on the show before that moment but in a straight context and therefore my gay brain rejected it). It feels like this little subtle moment was a way for the makers of the show to sort of skirt around a lot of network-imposed rules about what they couldn’t show. (I mean, the episode with Susan and Carol’s wedding was BANNED by some NBC affiliates throughout the country.)

ANYWAY, that’s only part one of my answer, since it’s technically post-coital. The first time I saw two women ACTUALLY hook up on television was, I think, when Callie and Arizona have shower sex that gets RUDELY interrupted by Lexie on Grey’s Anatomy. It’s posssssssible that something came before this, but it’s the one I have the clearest memory of. I must have been 17?

Carmen: Shout out to the Grey’s Anatomy Season Six shower scene! I won’t tell you how many times I’ve watched that in my life 😜.

Heather: Shout out to Winona Rider saying to Jennifer Aniston about their college kiss: “I don’t still hear coconuts banging together; I don’t picture your face when I make love to my boyfriend!” A quote that I had forgotten was seared into my memory until right this second.

Grey’s Anatomy (ABC), 2010

Heather: I accidentally watched the first sex scene from BBC’s made-for-TV movie adaptation of Sarah Waters’ Fingersmith as my first lesbian sex scene on TV. I’d been watching a bunch of Pride and Prejudice clips on YouTube and I guess the algorithm was like, “Oh okay more Regency Era British love stories for you!” When I realized what was happening, I closed the computer window so fast! But then I obviously couldn’t stop thinking about it and went back and watched it later (multiple, multiple times). The first proper lesbian sex scene I saw on actual TV was the first sex scene on The L Word, which was Shane and some blonde woman in Bette and Tina’s pool. I still remember Riese’s recap laughing about Shane taking off all her clothes besides that wrist cuff.

Carmen: Oh, my first one was definitely, without any doubt, the first episode of The L Word. One of my gayest stories about going to a Catholic high school (and I have plenty!) is that The L Word premiered during my senior year and that my Model United Nations team watched it together during a team bonding sleepover. Whaddup, gay nerds! One of the members of the team had an older sister who was gay, so she was the one who knew about the show. We piled together in the basement of someone’s house with our blankets and pillows and binders full of fake international trade policy. The volume was so low that I couldn’t even hear it from my spot in the back. After the first sex scene we scrambled to take it off because we were worried about one of the younger girls on the team telling a parent! Ah, youth!

The second time I watched a sex scene? ALSO THE L WORD!! Except this time I was a junior or senior in college with lots of questions about my sexuality that I wasn’t ready to deal with in high school. I graduated to YouTube compilations and headphones, watching it on a loop as I tried to figure out, “Exactly how do lesbians have sex?”

The Wire (HBO), 2002

Natalie: I probably first saw two women hook-up on MTV’s Undressed. I can’t recall any specific pairings — aside from this weird episode about identical twins that play “gay for a day” — but, when the show started airing in 1999, it was groundbreaking for its depiction of same-sex romance. If you’re of a queer of a certain age and your parents had cable, I guarantee that you spent some late nights with the lights off and the TV volume down low, watching Undressed marathons.

The earliest hook-up that I can recall specifically is Kima Greggs and her girlfriend, Cheryl, on The Wire. We didn’t have HBO at the time, but it was a free preview weekend and they were running episodes of this new show about the drug trade in Baltimore late one Saturday night. Though The Wire was forthright about Kima’s sexuality from the start, it wasn’t until the show’s fourth episode, “Old Cases,” that we get to see the couple hook up. Kima slides against Cheryl on the couch — Cheryl in a silk nightgown, Kima in a white undershirt and shorts — and they cuddle while watching television. When the topic of conversation turns to the law school classes that she’s been skipping out on, Kima turns on the seduction: climbing atop her girlfriend and leaning forward for a kiss before leaning back to take off her shirt. As they undressed, I watched with my mouth open in disbelief.


What messages do you think you internalized from that (from your friends watching with you, the way other characters reacted, the time/channel it was on, etc.)?

Valerie: I was 14 by the time that Buffy episode aired, and I had already been surrounded by a lot of homophobia in my life. I went to Catholic school, and mass every Sunday, and whenever two boys would kiss on a TV show my mother was watching with us, she would say, “Ewww.”

But Buffy was my safe space. It was just me and my dad who watched, and I didn’t talk about it with any of my school friends. My dad was so chill about the whole thing. He was upset when Willow and Tara broke up, same as me. He never expressed any negative emotions about them. Willow and Tara, in that episode, despite it going from so high to so low, gave me hope that queer women could have complex and real relationships just like their peers. That people could be happy for them, like Dawn was, instead of being grossed out. Regardless of what happened later in their storyline, “Once More with Feeling” was very important to me finding joy in queerness.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (The WB), 2001

Kayla: I, thankfully, was watching the Grey’s Anatomy episode alone. I usually watched Grey’s alone or with my mom, and I would have died if I had seen that with my mom. I watched it, uhhhh, several times thanks to TiVo! I mean, Lexie literally screams when she sees them, and maybe I did too? I don’t remember internalizing anything about it. (Honestly, maybe my Friends moment of Becoming Aware Of The Concept Of Eating Pussy is more significant?!) I remember being like, hmmm I sure do want to keep watching this three-second scene.

Heather: The L Word one, I knew what I was signing up for. I started watching that show to see lesbian sex, whether I could have admitted that to myself at the time or not (lol, not) — but the Fingersmith one really threw my brain for a loop because I’d been used to thinking of lesbian sex and some tawdry, godless thing invented in 1996 by Ellen DeGeneres, and before that, in the good ol’ days, everyone had been straight, straight, straight. The idea that women were doin’ it together in Victorian England, in their enormous cotton night gowns, by candlelight? Thinking that lesbianism could have existed for that long was a real pickle for my indoctrinated Christian brain. Luckily no one was around me to act grossed out and I could just think — and think and think and think — about it all on my own.

Natalie: When Undressed debuted in 1999, there was little LGBT representation on television and whatever representation there was, they certainly weren’t allowed to be as affectionate as their straight counterparts. As terrible as it could be — and boy was it terrible sometimes — Undressed helped normalize same-sex attraction and romance on television and that was really, revolutionary.

The Wire had the benefit of being on one of the premium channels (HBO) so they could be a bit more explicit than Undressed could be on basic cable. So when Kima strips off her tank and Cheryl palms her breasts, it was just awing to me because I’d never seen anything that explicit before on television. What makes that scene so indelible is that it featured two women of color. Seeing a lesbian character on television was a rarity, but two queer women of color? It’s like stumbling onto a unicorn.

Carmen: Y’all, my teammates and I literally ran to turn off the television.


What are some watershed moments, in your mind, between seeing that first hook-up and where we are now, in terms of women having sex on TV?

Valerie: For me, it has been amazing to watch the progression from the mostly-done-in-magic-metaphors/ skirting-around-the-topic ways of Buffy (it was considered progressive at the time!) to now.

I still get giddy when queer women TALK about sex. Out loud with their mouths! Obviously The L Word was a world of its own, but when The Bold Type’s Kat and Adena were talking about what they like or don’t like in bed, or just now on Sex Education when scissoring wasn’t the punchline of a joke, but a literal sex act. I dunno, it just always feels so great when I think about the teens who are being given this language to use.

The Bold Type (Freeform), 2018

Kayla: I mean I think despite the fact that some progress has been made, it still feels exciting when women have sex on TV? Now, I don’t have the bandwidth to do a data deep-dive in this department for this roundtable, but anecdotally, it feels like most shows that even feature queer sex still only have one queer sex scene for every 15 straight sex scenes. There are a lot of sex-heavy mainstream shows like Girls, Masters Of Sex, and True Blood that featured a proportionally low amount of lesbian sex compared to straight sex, and there are sex-heavy shows like Outlander that show NO lesbian sex at all.

For a while, it seemed like the only shows that featured a high percentage of queer sex scenes were shows where Being Gay is pretty much the premise (The L Word, Queer As Folk, etc.). There have been recent exceptions to that, like Orange Is The New Black, Vida, and Sense8. But shows where queer sex gets just as much screen time as straight sex — or even close to it — still feel exceptionally rare. I still feel like I’m desperate enough for little TV sex scraps that I can easily fall back into being the girl watching the same three second Grey’s Anatomy scene on a ceaseless loop.

Pretty Little Liars (Freeform), 2017

Heather: Lesbian sex has obviously come a very long way from the time you could only see it on American TV on Showtime after 10:00pm. Like Valerie said, Kat and Adena were doing it and talking about it out loud on Freeform last year. (A network, I will remind you, that just a few years ago was a-okay with every straight couple on Pretty Little Liars going on a farewell sex-fest while Emily and Alison RUBBED THEIR ANKLES TOGETHER.) (And while we’re on the subject, remember when Brittany and Santana kinda touched their necks together and Glee‘s writers called it a kiss????? The show was so proud of itself about it, too.)

The two shows I think that pushed the conversation forward the most in a post-The L Word world were Grey’s Anatomy, one of the most-watched shows on primetime broadcast TV, ever; and Orange Is the New Black, which was really the genesis of critically acclaimed original streaming platform content and the first show to be like, “No advertisers, no Million Moms bullshit, no ankle-rubbing.” I have scarcely been as shocked as I was when I queued OITNB up a few days after it dropped and Piper and Alex were fucking in the shower within the first three minutes. Everyone’s been trying to replicate Shonda Rhimes or catch up with Netflix since then.

Orange Is the New Black (Netflix), 2013

Carmen: I agree with Heather. When I was trying to write about Vida’s watershed sex scene last year, the timeline I roughly created was The L Word then Orange is the New Black then Vida. That still feels true for me. If you want to move beyond premium cable and streaming to more general access broadcast shows, then Grey’s Anatomy deserves a nod of its own. That victory swipe Callie’s hand takes on her mouth the morning after she goes down on Erica Hahn? Burned into my memory forever.

The best handled, most deserving of recognition “non-sex scene” that I can think of was Adena asking Kat point blank “Why won’t you go down on me?” The follow up of Kat figuring out her hang-ups about oral sex with the help of her two straight best friends was the exact kind of television I want available for queer young people. It was honest, and funny, and sweet. Later, when Kat and Adena get down to business, it’s downright sexy. All the things I was looking for back when I was watch The L Word on YouTube loops (and a thousand times more informational).

Vida (Starz), 2018

Natalie: I agree with Kayla. While there’s been undeniable progress when it comes to showcasing same-sex intimacy on television and, as Heather points out, on broadcast television, I think there’s a long way to go before we achieve parity.

I feel like I can’t overstate how much Shonda Rhimes and the model she’s built has really changed the paradigm when it comes to broadcast television. At the same time, I wonder: Who’s next? Especially with Shonda making the move to Netflix, who’s going to take up the mantle of raising the bar? Are Callie and Arizona the best we’re going to see from broadcast television for the next generation?

Heather: Honestly? Probably.


What shows do you think are doing queer sex best? What makes it the best?

Valerie: I think the way The Bold Type talks about it explicitly is great. Supergirl did some great stuff with Alex and Maggie (and Alex and Sara, don’t @ me) for being a “family” show – showing them kissing, cuddling in bed, tangled in sheets the morning after, etc. Legends of Tomorrow has been really killing it with the suggestive language.

Kayla: I’m always pleased to see scissoring on TV, and Sex Education made it super real by acknowledging that yes while it is a fun activity, it can sometimes be tricky to find a position that works! One time, I was at a dance party and I wasn’t sure why I was suddenly very hot-n-bothered until I realized that the song from the Vida sex scene (YOU KNOW THE ONE) was playing— so, uh, yeah Vida is killing it. Did I spend a day this summer rewatching every Luisa/Rose sex scene from Jane the Virgin? Why YES I did! One thing I love about them is they’re always so sweaty!!!

Jane the Virgin (The CW), 2018

Heather: Hard agree on The Bold Type and Supergirl and Vida and Sex Education, all of which were revolutionary in one way or another. I want to give some special love to Jane the Virgin, too, which not only just gave Petra a woman love interest like nbd, but also let them have that kind of swoony, romance novel sex the straight people on the show always get to have. And on broadcast TV! At 8pm! I was also blown away by the frank and unapologetic way The Bisexual talked about and shot its sex scenes, from Leila laughing and telling the first dude she slept with, “I thought having sex with men would be different, but it’s not” to her having sex with her friend instead of doing more emotional labor to make her stop crying.

Natalie: There is an American Express commercial that features Jarina De Marco’s “Tigre” — the same song featured in that scene from Vida — and every single time I see it, I have flashbacks to Emma and Sam. That’s how indelible that scene is.

As with Vida, I think a lot of the best lesbian love scenes are done by shows that have queer women as part of the crew. You Me Her, for example, had some great scenes between Emma and Izzy and I attribute that in large part to the direction of out lesbian Nisha Ganatra (of Chutney Popcorn fame). Angela Robinson’s job as a consulting producer on How to Get Away With Murder coincided with Eve’s arrival in Philadelphia.

Vida (Starz), 2018

Carmen: It’s that one episode of Vida. Yes, everything everyone said is great. But what Tanya Saracho did in those five minutes is unlike anything else on television point blank period. What makes it an absolute stand out is the thought she put behind every decision. She was intentional about creating a queer feminist sex scene between two women of color that respected them instead of exploited or exoctized them, and she still wanted it to be about power and control and be sexy. She succeeded at every level. Have you read her bts interview about it? You should.


What are some of the things that still drive you bonkers about women having sex on TV? 

Valerie: WHY IS IT ALWAYS SO DARK WHEN TWO WOMEN ARE MAKING OUT? This actually has started to change slightly (Wynona Earp’s Waverly and Nicole are usually sunkissed during their sweetest scenes), but jeepers. I’ve also noticed that sometimes when there’s something steamy going on with two women, the show still intercuts it with similar steam happening with a het couple. I wish I had stats for how often a queer makeout or sex scene immediately cut to straight people kissing or having sex, but I feel like it happens a lot.

Wynonna Earp (Syfy), 2018

Heather: I agree about the darkness. I remember when Lost Girl first premiered and let Bo and Lauren have sex with the lights on. I was like WHAT? IS THIS WHAT LESBIAN SEX LOOKS LIKE IN THE DAY TIME???

I also truly cannot abide a show that gives the straight couples great sex scenes and the queer couples like three seconds of pressing their foreheads together, especially if it’s juxtaposed with the straight people for some reason. Even that episode of Modern Family where Mitchell and Claire were reunited with Cam and Phil. Mitch and Cam hugged in the same frame where Claire and Phil open-mouth kissed. That kind of thing infuriates me.

Kayla: I feel like a lot of the sex scenes between women I’ve seen on television recently have been super gentle or even just the soft, post-coital moments. And sure, that’s fine and dandy. But sometimes it’s like, I wanna see someone throw someone around, ya know? That’s what was so great about that Vida sex scene. It seemed to really understand the top/bottom dynamic for one, and while it wasn’t ultra kinky, it still was a little edgier than lesbian sex is often allowed to be on television.

Valerie: YES like when Anissa and Grace had a wall-pinning make-out scene in Black Lightning. It wasn’t a full sex scene because it was on the CW but it was definitely edgier than the usual.

Black Lightning (The CW), 2018

Carmen: I am so glad we were able to sneak that Black Lightning scene into this discussion! It was a stunner. (Also shout out to Black Lightning for being one of the few shows on broadcast television willing to admit that women don’t lay around with their sheets up to their necks after sex! Lots of post-coital near nudity on that show, and it’s always tastefully shot.)

Natalie: The timing of sex scenes drives me mad. It’s a thing I hardly ever talk about because there’s no way to not be weird after admitting that you watch love scenes with a stopwatch in your hand, but I think showrunners are unwittingly sending awful messages to queer kids. To go from a blink-and-you-missed-it gay sex scene to a straight sex scene that goes on and on and on. For queer couples they’ll only show ten seconds of lesbian foreplay before cutting to something else. The straight couple gets an entire act to showcase their romance, set to some smooth R&B. Whether they intend it or not — and I genuinely believe that most of them don’t mean to do this — showrunners are sending the message that same sex intimacy is, quite literally, “less than.”

Carmen: Yes, absolutely. Natalie pointed this out a few summers ago while talking about Laverne Cox’s trans love story in Doubt, and I haven’t thought about our sex scenes on television the same ever since. I think that years of watching queer sex scenes be “cut to black!” while straight couples are allowed to tear apart kitchen counters or tear up the leather in back seats subliminally causes a lot of messed up internalizing for queer viewers. If a show is comfortable with its straight characters being a little randy, then the queer characters on that show deserve equal opportunity treatment. Our sex isn’t somehow “dirtier” or more in need of being shielded away just because it’s gay.


What is the worst and best lesbian sex scene in TV history?

Kayla: Best: Helena having sex with pregnant Tina in a pool do NOT @ me!!!!!

Valerie: I might never be over Shane/Carmen’s first sex scene even though it’s truly weird and the song keeps singing Shane’s name or the “fucking” sound clip from the theme song over and over. I guess it’s not the best just one of my faves. Waverly and Nicole’s first official time was also great because it was so real, kind of awkward but very sweet.

The L Word (Showtime), 2008

Heather: The worst is the aforementioned Ali and Emily ankle-bumping scene. The best is Bette and Tina’s sex scene in The L Word‘s season five episode called “Lights! Camera! Action!” It’s the one where Bette’s cooking stir-fry and Tina comes sauntering in talking about, “Bette. Turn around.” And they smash into each other and trip over everything and then they’re on the bed but Angie’s books are there and Tina’s like scrambling to throw them all on the floor. I have absolutely watched that scene more than every other lesbian sex scene on TV combined. I’m also a real sucker for Helen and Nikki’s sex scene on the UK soap Bad Girls, where Nikki breaks out of jail and Helen almost calls the cops on her, and the next minute they’re kissing so hard and, if you listen real close, you can hear Helen call Nikki “Nicola” for the first and only time.

Carmen: OMG When Bette and Tina almost burn down the kitchen! I’ll never forget it.

Valerie: I agree the Ali/Emily ankle-bumping was especially egregious on a show that showed Aria’s entire naked back while she was on top of Ezra, her teacher who had stalked her since she was 14.

Natalie: I stand by the scene from Vida as my new all time favorite but since we’ve already raved about that one, I’ll add one more: Mercedes and Barbara’s first time on the Chilean telenovela, Perdona nuestros pecados. So, so good… and so unfathomable to think about that happening on a primetime broadcast television show in the United States. Seriously, google it. Thank me later.

The worst? It’s hard to pinpoint the worst because, ultimately, the worst is when nothing ever happens. Some showrunner or producer somewhere gets scared, so they settle for intimating rather than actually showing anything.

But also, the worst? The striptease scene with Carmen and Shane that never came to fruition because of Jenny Schecter’s stupid phone call. #NeverForget

Carmen: I know Heather Hogan is going to disagree with me about this, but when in doubt I always blame Jenny.

Heather: And yet, by your own admission, you and Jenny witnessed lesbian sex for the first time together and are therefore bonded for life!

The L Word (Showtime), 2004

The Autostraddle TV Team is made up of Riese Bernard, Carmen Phillips, Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, Valerie Anne, Natalie, Drew Gregory, and Heather Hogan. Follow them on Twitter!

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37 Comments

  1. That Grey’s shower scene! That may be my most-watched TV clip of all time. But so short. A few seasons later when Meredith and Derek got an extended shower scene all I could think was, “well this is some bullshit”.

  2. It wasn’t the first time I saw lesbian sex on tv but Sense8’s first scene of Nomi and Amanita having sex has stuck with more than any other. If I remember rightly, that was their introduction to the show and what an introduction! I loved that it wasn’t just a sex scene, it was properly showing them as characters too and it seemed like that was something special.

  3. I think my introduction to lesbian sex–and it wasn’t even sex–was Patrice Donnelly and Mariel Hemingway arm wrestling in “Personal Best.” I just watched it again, and boy howdy was it hot. Mind you, I was still seeing it through the eyes of an eighteen year old girl who had not one clue what women did in bed.

    As for the best, I may have watched Keeley Hawes and Rachael Stirling’s sex scene/montage from “Tipping the Velvet” a few hundred times or so. “Vida” and “Black Lightening” are more recent favorites.

  4. Oh boy, the first time I ever saw two girls on tv kissing was when I was in 6th grade – I showed up at a friend’s house and they were watching South of Nowhere. I’d never heard of it before so she explained that the girls were dating. Cut to me downloading every episode on iTunes. My world was shook! The scene when Spencer’s mom drags Ashley from the house by her hair after catching them having sex (aka touching hands on the bed) is burned into my brain forever.

  5. The best scene is a tie between the one with Shane and Cherie Jaffe by the pool or the one when Shane and Carmen actually decide to be together at the end of season 2.

    The worst scene is the one from Lip Service with Frankie and what’s her name in the bathtub and Frankie tells her to shave. Or any scene with Shane and Jenny because no one wants to see that.

  6. The scene that sticks in my head so clearly when I think about lesbian sex on TV wasn’t even a real one, but in Skins UK when Emily Fitch wakes up in bed next to some girl and smells her fingers- that has always been such a evocative image for me.

  7. I think I stopped breathing for an extraordinarily long amount of time during Pepa and Silvia‘s trip out to the countryside.
    Also, I would like to remind people how hard life was before youtube, when you had to stalk the tv and religiously learn the TV guide for a rerun of „When Night is Falling“ because uh, it was the most romantic movie ever, or something, and I just really needed to tape it.

  8. I was 18 when I started watching a bunch of shows with lesbian content. I remember this movie The Truth About Jane, technically there were no sex scenes but it did show two girls in bed. The other was Queer As Folk, then a year later some girl I used to talk to online told me about The L Word and was exposed to even more. So it’s a combination of those three.

  9. @Natalie I’d completely forgotten about Undressed! I have no recollection of specific characters or episodes but I do remember that I used to watch it because it had queer characters.

    I also don’t remember the first time I saw a lesbian sex scene on TV. It was probably on The L Word. I do, however, remember the first couple times I saw two women kiss on TV. Ally & Ling on Ally McBeal, and Julia & her professor (played by Olivia D’Abo) on Party Of Five. Both were well-advertised sweeps week kisses and I made sure to tune in.

    As for best/worst…

    Bo & Lauren on Lost Girl wins for best, hands down. There were some really steamy scenes on that show, and you could tell someone in the room actually knew what two women do in bed together.

    I can’t think of a worst but I can think of a lot of disappointments (aka scenes where NOTHING HAPPENS.$

  10. I think the first was The L Word? I didn’t watch Buffy because I was too closeted and The L Word was new when I started college. So I guess the very first sex scene by the pool which is funny because I FEEL NOTHING ABOUT SHANE! Given that, I’m gonna claim when Bette and Tina have sex after the party to find a new donor.

    Oh okay so the reason I logged in was to talk about the Vida sex scenes. I died when Emma does the same little move with both Sam and several episodes later, Cruz! Died, okay! Something about it just being her thing, like her sexuality exists fully within her and not as part of a couple, also, it means that someone remembered and so it’s part of her character cannon. OMG!

  11. Agree with Liz and Carms, definitely the worst TV lesbian sex is anything with Frankie in Lip Service.

    This is largely because she is the greatest proponent of the move that my wife and I refer to as “The Saw” – aka when someone is simulating some kind of fingering action, but it looks like their hand is starting about two feet away from the genitals and they make this ridiculous sawing motion that induces no delight in the viewer, but rather more sympathy kegel scrunches.

  12. There’s this one episode of House where someone (Chase probably? Idk) is having his bachelor party and Thirteen hears about it and says something sassy and sexy that essentially amounts to “If you invite me, I’ll perform my bisexuality for your male gaze.” And then they showed her taking a body shot off a stripper and I was like 14 and I was like 😶😯😦😳🤯🤤 YOU CAN LICK WOMEN’S BOOBS AND ABS???????!????!!!!!

    So like not great but also GREAT, ya know?

  13. 1. Legends of Tomorrow has amazing parity when it comes to showcasing queer v straight love/lust, especially in the last two seasons, and it feels so great to watch
    2. Root and Shaw’s sex scene!! I watched a YouTube video that was every scene in their relationship and the payoff was AMAZING.
    3. Lost Girl is such a thing! That show was not at all equal when it came to sex between two women v sex between Bo & a dude but the queer sex scenes were bright and intense and unlike anything I’d seen before.

    Wow this article was soooo good and left me wanting a whole damn series! Like let’s talk sex in family friendly shows. Let’s talk sex with nudity. Let’s get those stats on cutting to straight people. I FEEL VERY HYPED UP ABOUT ALL THIS!

    TV Team you are truly a blessing thank you

    • I gotta show some love for that Root/Shaw scene too! The only sex scene POI ever did (if I’m not mistaken) and it was two queer women? AND on CBS, which is not exactly the most, shall we say… diverse network. It was a really good scene, and I love the way their whole relationship was built up (no one talk to me about the end of season 5, it never happened). “There was plenty of sucking” is not a line I ever expected to hear re: gay sex on CBS and for this I thank POI with all of my heart

  14. I think the first lesbian sex scene I ever saw was Bianca and Reese on All My Children. I was 14 and I always watched soaps with my mom and I remember it being SO RAUNCHY and SO HARDCORE and I just went back to try to find it on YouTube and it’s like… one kiss and a fade to black (hot). But I used to think about that scene ALL THE TIME, like 14-year-old me would be lying awake at night thinking “I’m definitely not gay but IF I WERE GAY I SURE WOULD BE ATTRACTED TO THIS THING I CAN’T STOP THINKING ABOUT HMM LET ME THINK ABOUT IT SOME MORE FOR TOTALLY HETEROSEXUAL REASONS”

    I think that was the first lesbian storyline I ever saw actually, which on the one hand it’s nice that I was a teenager at a time where the FIRST LESBIAN WEDDING ON DAYTIME TV! was a thing but on the other hand Reese made out with Bianca’s brother-in-law the night before their wedding and then Bianca just kind of disappeared off the show so I was pretty sure the natural lesbian life cycle was “lose the woman you love to a man and then disappear into the abyss”

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