Apparently Whip It! Doesn’t Need Lesbian Action, It’s Already a “Hidden Lesbian Fantasy”

WfHIP IT!: Really, I appreciate what this self-described “heterosexual man” is trying to do by extolling the gender-subversive values of Whip It’s hidden Lesbian Action in Psychology Today’s Lesbian Fantasy, Disguised, but he’s just a little bit too self-congratulatory about his sudden revelation that there are Lonely Lesbians who must seek Comfort in Girl Power Movies (the lonely lezzies in this article hail from Bovine, Texas — in the interview below this daily fix item, proverbial Lonely Lesbian was located in Iowa. In The L Word, it was always just the Midwest).

I have developed the hypothesis of “Whip It” as lesbian fantasy in disguise, because even if this is not the intention of the filmmaker, it still works on this level, and by functioning on this level it is serving a social purpose above and beyond the gender equality comment that women can make films too.

But, I kinda love that he can somehow get away with saying things like this in a way that feels a lot less clichè than when we say it (or perhaps a lot less like wishful thinking), even when it is kinda stereotype-y.

“The protagonist, Bliss (Page), behaves in the way that a lesbian might behave before she knows she’s a lesbian. We meet her just as she’s playfully dying her hair blue for a beauty pageant. Her inexplicably love for roller derby is incited by the image of three women pushing each other on rollerblades. She dumps her boyfriend with suspicious ease and celerity. She’s an adolescent who likes to be different, is experimental and puts a boyfriend second to roller derby.”

But maybe I’m being too harsh, and should just appreciate this endearing — if clumsy, and self-congratulatory — little trope in a not-exclusively-gay magazine by a dude. Like maybe this is the best thing everyou tell me! –– especially if you’ve seen the movie, as I totally have not. Like the thing he wrote about roller-blading being a metaphor for top and bottom sex — harmless naivety, or ignorance?

L WORD: Jennifer Beals remains a perfect human in an interview at Matthew’s Place (Judy Shepard’s website), where the interviewer’s”Uh”s were for some reason transcribed but otherwise was an excellent interview & platform for Jennifer Beals to radiate her perfection: “By listening to [the story of a couple who’d never felt comfortable being out during their 30 years together ’til they saw The L Word] and many other stories like theirs I realized it was incumbent upon all of us to live as authentically as we possibly can. Not just for our own sake but for the sake of everyone else as well, because we don’t do anyone a favor by … hiding our candle under the bed.” Seriously read it let’s all get inspired today!

LESBIAN CHEF CAT CORA is interviewed at AfterEllen about her new restaurant, family and charity work.

Carly’s Televisionary is up (in which even vodka couldn’t numb her feelings about Grey’s Anatomy), and also, we have your Autostraddle 2009 Fall Style Guide!

GAGA: Lady Gaga debuted her new single, “Bad Romance,” at the Alexander McQueen show in Paris yesterday. My former roommate was there. But I’m not bitter. At all. Daily Gaga has a clip of the audio from the show. It’s not great quality, but it sounds like typical Gaga, i.e., pure awesomeness. (@dailygaga)

Also, Lady Gaga will be playing herself on Gossip Girl later this season. YAYAY! (@gossipgirlinsider)

30 ROCK: “There’s a new preview of 30 Rock season 4, which starts Oct. 15. The season begins with a search for new talent for TGS because Americans can no longer relate to Tracy and Jenna. The clip also includes interviews with the cast, so you get to see Liz Lemon and Tina Fey, all in one video! Plus, Brian Williams, who I secretly love, makes fun of himself.” – Intern Sarah (@nbc)

THE GOSSIP: Buzznet interviewed The Gossip about their new album, Music for Men. Beth Ditto talks about feminism and Kathleen Hanna! Also, check out Ditto’s crazy cool dress that looks like something Edward Gorey and Jackson Pollock collaborated on. (@buzznet)

SAINTHOOD: If you didn’t get your deluxe pre-order bundle of Tegan & Sara‘s new album, don’t worry. You can now pre-order it on iTunes, which sadly doesn’t get you an ink blot or the books but will get you some bonus tracks!

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3178 articles for us.


  1. Re: the Whip It article – wow. I thought lesbians were the only pros at reading subtext into maintstream films and TV. You already read my review of Whip It so you know that I think the movie is pretty damn gay but not “let’s castrate all the men” gay like he seems to think. He’s a nut.

    • I’m sorry, article? All I saw was a video of Ellen Page in purple tights talking about Amsterdam… mhmm. Perhaps I should go back and *read* what it says up there, huh? ;)

    • I agree/kind of hate this man. He talks like he thinks he invented queer subtext, and he sounds like Jack Hanna observing lesbians in the wild when he talks about the way Bliss behaves. Also, “inexplicable” love for roller derby? What’s inexplicable about it? AND ONE LAST THING saying that Bliss’s dumping her boyfriend without lasting trauma is “suspicious” and implying that she must be a lesbian because she puts roller derby first is actually pretty offensive to all women, including straight ones. Only a deep and unnatural love of vaginas could ever cause you to have priorities other than a boyfriend? Really?

      • you’re all totally right! whenever i doubt that i am being too mean, it always turns out that i am not being mean enough. i mean basically it’s like saying that ‘sex in the city’ is secretly a lesbian show because they sometimes prefer their girlfriends over their boyfriends and all have careers.

        I think that basically the distinction is that movies like Whip It can empower women to have lives that are not all about men. Whether or not they happen to also sleep with men or women is sort of irrelevant. he’s kind of making an ancient point.

    • I totally said that statement over and over to my friends when i dragged them to see Whip It opening night (as promised). The purple tights and soccer juggling also exponentially increased her awesomeness in my mind.

  2. did anyone else read the line about Lady Gaga on Gossip Girl as “Lady Gaga will be playing with herself on Gossip Girl”?

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