Boob(s On Your) Tube: Alice Pieszecki Arrives On “Chasing Life,” Alana Enjoys A Finger Wagging On “Hannibal”

If you spend most of your life with your eyeballs glued to GayBC Family like I do, you probably feel like summer is coming to a close. Why, this very night the Pretty Little Liars are going to prom! They’re going to graduate! And next week, the Big A Reveal. (No, for real this time.) (FOR REAL.) As ABC Family winds down, though, some summer TV shows are just gearing up!

Here’s the full trailer for Faking It‘s second season, which returns on August 31. Paige McCullers is definitely naked in this trailer, so.

Here’s the full trailer for the second season of Survivor’s Remorse. It’s back in all it’s M-Chuck glory on August 22nd.

https://youtu.be/KdL_1m5uzuA

This week’s queer TV roundup is a little more brief (and late) than usual. There was no new episode of The Fosters, and I’m working on a kitten-saving project that took up my whole weekend. We’ll be back to normal next Monday.


Chasing Life

Mondays on ABC Family at 9:00 p.m.

CHASING LIFE - "Truly Madly Deeply" - April and Leo are in the throes of wedding planning and coming at crossroads when Sara suggests they take a newlywed quiz to help them learn more about each other. But instead of bringing the two closer together, the quiz proves that the two aren't truly being honest. This is a hard blow for April as she is also dealing with the realization that her father might not have been the guy she thought he was. Meanwhile, Sara and Beth try to take a night off from dating drama as Brenna finds herself in a big mess with Margo's crazy ex (Leisha Hailey), on an all new episode of "Chasing Life" airing Monday, July 27 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on ABC Family. (ABC Family/Adam Taylor) AURORA PERRINEAU, LEISHA HAILEY, HALEY RAMM

And then she wrote a book called Lez Girls and then she died.

At long last, Alice Pieszecki arrived on Chasing Life, as Brenna’s new girlfriend’s ex-girlfriend. “Wait,” I hear you saying, “a high school senior is dating someone old enough to date Alice Pieszecki?” Ah, yes. And that is the rub. See, Margo is Brenna’s fresh-from-college film club sponsor, but now that Brenna has changed schools, they’re in the clear to see each other romantically. Brenna is a mature 17, and she’s feeling it — until she meets Alice Pieszecki, who crashes her date with Margo, wine in hand, even though Margo told Brenna she’s an alcoholic. So Margo has to abandon their date to take Alice Pieszecki home.

On their next date, Brenna discovers that Margo took Alice Pieszecki home to her home, because they still live together and share a dog. Brenna’s probably too young to have ever even seen The L Word, if we’re being honest, and this amount of drama is both surprising and unnerving to her, so she bounces up out of there without even looking back over her shoulder.

At her new school, she meets a guy with cancer. I’ll bet six hundred million dollars he is the person she anonymously gave her bone marrow to and they’re gonna fall in love like John Greene wrote it.


Clipped

Tuesdays on TBS at 10:00 p.m.

clipped83

I’m looking for a girl named Quinn Fabray. She said she was going to Yale and hasn’t been heard from since.

Coach Beiste arrived on Clipped this week, playing Mo’s mom, Dottie. (Get it? ‘Cause her name is Dot Marie Jones, IRL.) (Dot Marie Jones is an angel, by the way.) Anyway, so Dottie seems like a stereotypical lesbian and Mo’s dad seems like stereotypical gay man, and they’re getting divorced, but then they don’t because they’re actually straight, and Charmaine still hasn’t done any queer thing.


Scream

Tuesdays on MTV at 10:00 p.m.

scream-episode-5-audrey

Keep holding your breath, Emma. The Grunwald will be here soon.

Audrey consoles her future girlfriend, Emma, this week as she dealt with the fallout from her own sex tape getting leaked onto the internet. Will spends the episode trying to convince Emma he didn’t film their first time together, and also he spends the episode getting his ass beaten down. In gym class, it’s self-defense day, and Audrey pins him to the ground before the instructor even says go. Emma and Audrey get even more gal pal-y at a memorial service for Nina, Tyler, and Riley — which means they’re totally going to fall in love, and then it’s going to come to light that Audrey’s the one who released Emma’s sex tape! Or one of them is going to die! Or they’re both going to die! Or one of them is the killer!

Don’t get your heart involved, is what I am saying.


Complications

Thursdays on USA at 9:00 p.m.

COMPLICATIONS -- "Relapse" Episode 107 -- Pictured: Jessica Szohr as Gretchen Polk -- (Photo by: Quantrell Colbert/USA Network)

Put up your hands and step away from the Nokia 5160, Humphrey.

Gretchen is my summer hero, y’all. No one else is going to be able to come close. This week, she saved Jed’s life by forcing him to get sober and by taking him to the hospital for vigilante treatment during one of his benders when he fell right on his face and busted it up. Gretchen also saved John’s life by smashing his car window and pulling his gun from his doctor bag(!) and getting into a high noon showdown with the gang members who were beating the shit out of him to keep him from explaining the plot of this show to anyone in authority.

The ratings are pretty solid. They’ve held strong this summer. USA will probably cast its renewal net around it really soon.


Rookie Blue

Thursdays on ABC at 10:00 p.m.

rookieblue83

Did someone say Quinn Fabray?

I only started watching Rookie Blue for Gail and Holly’s storyline last season, but I have fallen in forever love with Gail Peck. She’s trying to adopt Sophie, as you know, so this week she meets with the family services person who is evaluating her. She decides to help out with a community softball game to show the social worker how good she is with kids, but it kind of backfires because she turns out to be super awkward with the kids — until there’s a drive-by shooting and she flips the switch to hero mode and saves some lives! At the end of the day, she gets to hang out with Sophie for a little while. Sophie who knows and loves her for the true hero she is. I prefer puppies to children (and dogs to adult humans), but Sophie is wonderful. I hope we get to keep her.


Defiance

Fridays on Syfy at 8:00 p.m.

DEFIANCE -- "Ostinato in White" Episode 309 -- Pictured: Trenna Keating as Doc Yewll -- (Photo by: Ben Mark Holzberg/Syfy)

Queer Clones 2 The Street: Yewll and Kenya’s Cross-Country Adventure

Doc Yewll died on Defiance this week! Ripped to shreds! But actually it was only a clone of Doc Yewll! Kindzi is making clones of her and hunting them for sport. Weirdly, when Yewll finds out, it kind of turns her on? I mean, her wife also was a hardcore Slytherin, so at least her type is consistent, but YIKES. T’evgin finds Kindzi in her evil lair and yells at her about blah blah whatever I’m The King And We’re Good Aliens Now, but before he does that, Kindzi manages to stick some kind of mind-controlling device into Yewll’s head, so that’s going to end in a bloodbath for sure.


Hannibal

Saturdays on NBC at 10:00 p.m.

hannibal83

I wear pantsuits now. Pantsuits are cool.

Remember last week when I told you that Hannibal time-jumped three years? Well, it turns out Margot and Alana have been together the whole time, and they have a baby! Alana carried the baby — due to Margot’s ovaries being cut out by her brother last season, I think, before she fed him to the eels who lived in his floor — and it’s from Margot’s brother’s sperm. Now, they have an air to their pig farm! (I think.)

So Alana is working at the psychiatric facility where Hannibal is being held because she says there’s only five keys separating Hannibal from the outside world, and she’s got all of them in her pocket. She tells Hannibal this while also threatening to take away all his nice things if he doesn’t stop being a jerk to his boyfriend, Will.

“Did you come to wag your finger at me?” is what he says.

“I love a good finger-wagging,” is what she says.

“Yes, you do.” he says, “How is Margot?”

That’s the story as told to me by Stacy and also by Stef. #FingerWagging


I Am Cait

Sundays on E! at 8:00 p.m.

i-am-cait

Kim, honestly, the least you can do is ask Kanye to follow me on Twitter.

I expected the second episode of I Am Cait to be much more Kardashian-y than first one, just sort of lighthearted and focused on fashion and living life in Malibu, so I was shocked when it dove right into the dissonance caused by someone as privileged as Caitlyn Jenner being thrust into the spotlight by much of the mainstream media as the face and voice of the trans movement. In an op-ed in People this week, Caitlyn said: “To those of you who have asked me for my opinion or expertise, I want to remind you that while I’ve know that I was trans since I was a small child, learning about the trans community is still very new to me, and I don’t have all the answers.”

And that’s the theme of the second episode of the show. Jenner takes a luxury RV ride up to the San Francisco Human Rights Campaign’s office with a group of trans women, including GLAAD’s Jenny Boylan, and it only takes a few minutes of discussion before Jenner’s conservative politics and privilege enter the conversation and highlight how living in a rich, white bubble has colored her view of the tough reality so many trans people face. Like so many Conservatives, Jenner has bought into the lie that people only need welfare if they’re not willing to work. That’s categorically untrue, and a belief that is hugely damaging because trans people suffer a disproportionate amount of unemployment and homelessness.

This exchange was the crux of the conversation.

Caitlyn: A lot of times, they can make more not working with social programs than they actually can with an entry-level job.
Jenny: I’d say the great majority of people who are getting help are getting help because they need help.
Caitlyn: But you don’t want people to get totally dependent on it. That’s when they get into trouble. ‘Why should I work? You know, I’ve got a few bucks, I’ve got my room paid for.

Another reality show would have cut away to commercial with some dramatic music, but E! actually cut to a confessional with Jenny Boylan, who said:

“Now I’m worried. Caitlyn has every right to be just as conservative as she chooses, but many transgender men and women need social programs to survive and that’s nothing to be ashamed of. Living in the bubble is an impediment to understanding other people. If Cait’s going to be a spokesperson for our community, this is something she’s going to have to understand.”

I really appreciate the lengths the show is going to to highlight how Caitlyn’s life is a big exception to the experiences of most trans people. I also appreciate how far it’s going to show members of the trans community lovingly but firmly helping Caitlyn examine the huge gulf between her politics/lived experiences and the needs of the trans community/goals of trans community activists.

In another confessional, one of the trans women Caitlyn is meeting with says:

“Cait thinks that because she read a couple of pages in [Janet Mock’s] book that she’s in the know, but she doesn’t get it. She doesn’t realize how common sex work stories are. She could never understand how it would feel to walk in those shoes. If she’s going to be our representative, Cait needs to learn the struggle we all face.”

By showing Caitlyn’s missteps and allowing trans folks to correct them, E! is also correcting a lot of common misconceptions held by their audience, most of whom probably wouldn’t have taken the time to educate themselves about the needs and struggles of the trans community otherwise. It’s pretty surprising to me that they’ve taken this route, but I’m glad.


Team TV coverage you may have missed

+ The 10 Best Gal Pals In TV History

It’s Gal Pal Week on Autostraddle.com! Let’s kick it off by counting down television friendships we adore!

+ Fan Fiction Friday: 10 Sapphic Slayer Stories (Where No Witches Die)

Willow and Tara in love (and alive) forever!

+ Pretty Little Liars Episode 608 Recap: New Romantics

Aria asks Emily to prom and she says no!

+ Dannielle Owens-Reid Needs Your Help Making a Documentary About Every LGBT Character In American TV History

She knows who killed Jenny Schecter.

+ Orange Is the New Black Episode 309 Recap: Rumspringa Natural Good-Time Family-Band Solution

Leanne’s Amish roots come to light as she hammers out the tenants of Normaism, a rabbi arrives to test Jewish Black Cindy and the others about their newfound Jewish faith, and Suzanne’s legion of admirers grows.


Starting next week, I’ll be covering Carmilla in this column, and thanks to your input last week, I’ll add Steven Universe to the line-up!

Heather Hogan is an Autostraddle managing editor who lives in New York City with her partner, Stacy, and their cackle of rescued pets. She's a member of the Television Critics Association, the Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer critic. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Heather has written 771 articles for us.

18 Comments

  1. OMG, I love Steven Universe. I just got into it, and I’m not quite caught up, but almost. Also, GayBC Family is my life. They finally added their shows to Hulu, and I think I did a dance and called everyone I know to tell them the news. Also, it’s okay that this post was late, because you were saving kittens. You have proven to be a supreme being, Heather Hogan, Savior of Kittens.

  2. I was just talking to a friend last night about how genuinely surprised I am that I’ve been enjoying I Am Cait so far. I’ve never seen a Khardasian property before. I suppose I had my own preconceptions about what that type of show entails, but Cait’s show has a heart to I that that I’m finding endearing thus far.

    I sooooooo appreciate that the show was brave enough to delve right into the ongoing critiques of Cait from those within the trans community. I loved seeing Jenny Bolyan, Jen Richards, and Angelica Cross in the episode! All three are kick ass trans women who I’ve come to admire over the last few years.

    And, like Heather said, I love that these women are both strong in their critique of Cait, but also kind/supportive in their mentorship of her. The scene when Jenny Bolyan talks to her about wearing a bathing suit for the first time in public! Or when Cait admits she has never been in a room with only other trans women before her dinner with the “girls”– Man, I remember those early days of living my truth as a queer women and entering those spaces. Everything is all excitement and nerves and joyful and anxious and maddening. I could read all of those conflicting feelings on Caitlyn’s face and it really brought me back.

    Last point, I’m pretty sure that Candis Cayne (Caitlyn’s friend/crush of the moment, maybe only for tv ratings) is only interested in men- but I wouldn’t mind if the show explores what could be Cait’s queerness in upcoming episodes.

    (Sorry for the long comment, y’all! I have been so surprised with all of my I am Cait feelings, and don’t have a lot of people to talk to about them, lol.)

    • Yeesh, all the feels!

      When Caitlyn came out, there was a ton of talk in queer communities about how her privilege lends her a huge voice while trans women of color have been saying the same thing for years while getting no media attention, and that the media focus on her was distracting from the real issues most trans women who are not white and incredibly wealthy, face every day. I’m totally on board with all those critiques, and I was worried about this series just being a Gigi Gorgeous-esque escapist fantasy.

      And here comes “I am Cait,” purposefully shining a spotlight on all of those critiques and giving many other trans women the opportunity to speak about issues of sex work, violence, and trans youth homelessness in their own words and on national television.

      And apparently Caitlyn herself is co-executive producer on the show, which means she’s in the driver’s seat of how she’s being portrayed.

      I’m impressed with her willingness to let herself be seen as ignorant of the real issues affecting most trans women. And I’m also cautiously optimistic that in the coming episodes, we’ll see Cait undergoing some serious education about the community for whom she wants to speak. And that through her, the audience (1.3 million who saw this episode) will get a similar education.

      But all in all, I just kept thinking, that if the show continues in this vein, *this* is a great example of how to use one’s privilege to make positive change in the world and to amplify the most marginalized members of the community whose voices most need to be heard.

  3. I just want to say that I really love Alana Bloom this season! Her pant suits, her hair, her talking about finger wanging…..

    I really hope she doesn’t die be for the end of the show, I just want her and Margot to live happily ever after. To much to ask from Hannibal?

  4. I’m so looking forward to all the beeeping silly teenage DRAMA on Faking It. Are they going to make Amy bisexual? Are Amy and Karma end up together again? Is Liam finally going away?

    I’m counting the days until August 31!

    (I know it’s silly but Faking It is my absolute guilty pleasure and I wish we had something similar on TV when I was young.)

  5. The Faking It trailer made me legit gasp, so it’s got that going for it. GOSH DARNNIT AMY stop being so relateable to my life except I didn’t allow any female friends to get super close in high school because they caused me too much feelings distress.

    Also don’t cheat on your girl friend because that’s pretty shitty. And MTV don’t make bisexuality a thing that needs to be ‘proven’ by having sex with a lady. These are my wishes.

  6. Cancer kid Finn in Chasing Life is also the kid Amy makes out with in the Faking It trailer.

    I guess ABC is airing Rookie Blue late because the season finale has already happened. Won’t spoil anything other than casting but Margot Verger makes an appearance.

  7. I fear tons of biphobia in this season of Faking It, where Amy MUST choose if she is gay or straight, if she likes guys OR girls. Or worse, that she’ll have to “prove” her bisexuality.

    And I also fear the fandom’s reaction if she ends up being bi. I can already hear the cries of “lesbophobia” from here.

    • But didn’t they already “prove” that by having her sleep with Liam last year? That didn’t go over well then either. I’m more concerned about the prospect of her cheating and hurting her girlfriend than I am her being bisexual in general. If the storyline takes the path of having her cheat on Regan with a guy thus “confirming” her bisexuality I would find that extremely problematic. That would not be positive bi representation IMO. But you know mileage varies.

Contribute to the conversation...

You must be logged in to post a comment.