Boobs on Your Tube: “Batwoman” Is at Its Best the More Murder-y It Gets

Wow this really is a time we’re living in, isn’t it? Here’s some TV to help you get through it:

It was the Season Three finale of The L Word on To L and Back, an event that feels as if we’ve been building to for weeks and is indeed finally here. Dreamer and Supergirl teamed up to fight transphobia on Supergirl. It’s no The Nanny reboot, but Fran Drescher’s new sitcom Indebted has an adult lesbian daughter who keeps her puppy in BabyBjörn, so we love her. On Legends of Tomorrow, the Legends said goodbye to Ray and Nora with a Shakespearean flourish. Netflix’s “Feel Good” insists that deeply flawed queer people are worthy of love. And “Last Tango in Halifax” Season Five has a lot to love (if you can forgive it for Season Three).

The TV Team is also here to cover your social distancing entertainment needs! This week we released a list of all 42 Hulu streaming TV shows with lesbian and bisexual women characters and we hosted: Ask Us Anything: What To Watch While Social Distancing, From Noted Queer ExpertsYou can click that link at any point all weekend, and we will be glad to help!! Please put our minds to good use! 💗

Notes from the TV Team: 

+ 9-1-1 returned from its extended midseason break this week and, truth be told, I was a little disappointed: the emergencies seemed a little less outrageous than usual and (!!) our fave, Hen, didn’t get a lot of screentime. That said, a big thing happened during that limited screentime: Hen and Karen brought home their new foster child! — Natalie

+ Top Chef kicked off its 17th season with a battle between some of the show’s best former cheftestants. Representing for Team QUEER LADY: Lisa Fernandes (runner-up in Season 4), Melissa King (4th place finish in Season 12) and Karen Akunowicz (7th place finish in Season 13). All three survived a tough elimination challenge and will live to cook another day. — Natalie

+  Sadly The Bold Type wasn’t gay this week!! But it was without a doubt there best episode in at least a month, so I wouldn’t want you to miss it! Sutton’s Bachlorette Party was full of laughs and bad drunken decisions and friendship, all things that brings The Bold Type into its best light! Bonus Gay Points: A Raven Symoné guest spot, and for Kat getting closer to solving the RJ Stafford supports conversion therapy mystery.  — Carmen

+ Maya and Dr. Orgasm only briefly shared a screen this week on Station 19. But that brief time together included Carina whispering encouraging (and hot!!) Italian into Maya’s ears while they laid together in bed, so I figured you would want to know.  — Carmen

+ I watched the first season of High School Musical: The Musical, The Series this week and as someone who love-love-loved those movies (I’m talking, spent many a Saturday learning the “We’re All in This Together” dance) it was a very cute homage to it (with some delightful lil cameos) and the lead girl, Nini, has two moms! We only ever see one mom at a time, but she talks about her moms a lot and it’s cute and chill and not a thing anyone talked about in any detail. There’s also a cute storyline about two of the teenage boys going to the dance together, and the one who plays Sharpay feeling more like himself with neon stage makeup on. All in all the show was very cheesy and definitely made for a YA audience, but also very cute and the queer subplots were very surprising for a Disney+ show. — Valerie Anne


Batwoman 115: “Off With Her Head”

Written by Heather

Kate Kane killed her first human on this week’s Batwoman, in an episode that was about as horror-y as it gets in the Arrowverse, but with a tone that was keeping right in line with Batwoman’s comic book history. “Off With Her Head” features an actual severed head that’s been in a freezer for a decade; the very severed head, in fact, of Kate and Beth’s mom, Gabbi. Turns out Cartwright — the guy who kidnapped Beth and tortured her and also taught her how to make masks of other people’s faces for his son Mouse — had Mama Kane’s entire fucking head in frozen storage because his mother was obsessed with her and wanted to wear Gabi’s face as her face. (I know this sounds like the kind of shit I used to make up when I was recapping Pretty Little Liars, but this is really what happened on this show!) Of course Beth ended up finding the head and killing Cartwright’s terrible mother, who also took some Dolores Umbridge-style turns torturing her when she was a kidnapped child.

This all comes to light after Cartwright reveals that he’s kidnapped Alice and hooked her up to Scarecrow’s fear toxin, and the thing she’s most afraid of is the image of her own mother. Jacob saves her. Kate beats Cartwright to death. Afterward, she’s sitting alone in an alley and thinking about texting Sophie to blow off some steam, but Alice wanders out and says she’s got a lot to learn about being a murderer. For example, she hopes Kate isn’t sleepy because they’re absolutely going to be up all night burying that body.

I’m not sure if they’re headed for a redemption arc with Alice. I’m not sure she can be redeemed — but my god, what an absolutely horrifying life that poor girl had.


Twenties 104: “You Know How I Like It”

Written by Carmen

When Hattie saunters into Marie’s kitchen in just her sports bra and a do-rag, three things happened: 1. I blushed (Jonica “JoJo” Gibbs is capital “F” foine and I’m only human after all), 2. I was once again stunned how far BET has come since my childhood and adolescence, we aren’t quite all the way there, but wow it’s mind-blowing to see how far we’ve come, 3. I knew this was going to be my favorite episode yet.

Scratch that, when Hattie’s hookup from last night, Syriah, comes in to share a kiss in the kitchen while Marie looks upset (In summary, Marie to Hattie: We agreed you’d ask before having guests over, Hattie: I sent a text!, Marie: It was 3am!), that’s when I knew this was going to be my favorite episode.

In addition to Syriah No Last Name, Hattie is still doing the on-and-off-again thing with resident Mommi in Charge Lorraine, who treats Hattie like a fuckboi plaything to keep her entertained during her spare time. Lorraine might need to move over because peak Bette Porter-style hottie Ida B. has her sights set on Hattie and spent the episode looking at our young Writer’s P.A. like she was a picnic basket and her name was Yogi Bear. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

After some encouragement from her mom, who FaceTimed to casually ask if scissoring was a real thing (Kym Whitley: “I saw it on lesbian porno!” Hattie: “That shit is for dudes.” Kym: “I’m just trying to understand you!”) and a helpful reminder that she didn’t pay for college for Hattie to be acting like a slave, Hattie asks for more creative responsibilities at work. In response, Ida sends Hattie on a wild goose chase to find some research documents that the writers need for the show. If you’ve ever seen Lena Waithe talk about her quest as a young assistant to get Whoopi Goldberg on the phone for producer Gina Prince-Bythewood, then you already see this leads.

Basically, in order to cut through red-tape, Hattie needs the black community hook up. She finds it in guest star Darryl Stephens — And dear reader, I SCREAMED when I saw him!!! Noah’s Arc 5ever!! Learn your black queer TV history — Ok, anyway, Noah helps Hattie and after a surprisingly well-written and gay comedy of errors, she delivers the research materials back to Ida.

This is when things get verrrrry interesting. Ida invites Hattie to accompany her to a film screening, as a reward of sorts. She dresses Hattie up like a Ken doll in a designer white blazer that looks damn good on top of her Lauryn Hill t-shirt. Now Natalie thinks Ida was using Hattie to make her ex (a woman) jealous, and I think that Ida was grooming Hattie for future inappropriate work flirtations. BUT We Both Agree that whatever happened — it’s gay, and I can’t wait to see what comes next.


Legacies 215: “Life Was So Much Easier When I Only Cared About Myself”

Written by Valerie Anne

josie lizzie legacies merge

If you had told me to guess who would wear white vs black in the merge a year ago, this isn’t how I would have predicted it going.

The fight for Josie’s soul is on, and Hope is leading the charge. She’s the only person who has gotten through to her so far, and with Landon potentially out of the picture (yeah right, I’m not that lucky) maybe they really will do the Elena/Stefan/Damon bait-and-switch I was hoping for. (Though I’m not sure where that leaves Jade… or where Jade was this episode. I guess still trapped in the greenhouse?) Because as much as I’m really enjoying Dark Josie, I, like Hope, miss our strong and selfless girl and hope she comes back soon. At the end of this week’s episode, Hope rode her metaphorical steed into Josie’s mind palace, so we’ll see if she can save the princess, save the world.

PS: Every time they mention Caroline’s name I hope she’ll appear, but she never does. I’d take her over Ric any day.

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!

The TV has written 129 articles for us.

11 Comments

  1. My first tgought when I saw Landon get that arrow was also that we sadly wouldn’t be rid of him.

    Also, how much queer content is in the first two seasons of “Twenties” and are we getting some or even regular coverage on Motherland: Fort Salem, because I loved the first episode?

    • There is only ONE season of Twenties!! That is a typo. So you’ve only missed four episodes, and thus far they’ve all been pretty damn queer. Click the title above to learn more.

      And yes we do have Motherland: Fort Salem coverage planned and coming your way soon! We want to do a longer and more serious piece about it, so we are letting the first few episodes air to get a real feel. But it’s on the books!

  2. i liked fort salem, but felt like they opted for symbolism in places where context would have been more helpful, and for me more interesting.

    the world they are presenting is super interesting.

  3. Little Fires Everywhere has just dropped its first three episodes on Hulu and it looks like there’s at least one lesbian character, plus from a (spoiler-free) flashback in the first episode it looks like Kerry Washington’s character might be a little queer too??

    • I’m definitely watching!! I’ve been told the obviously [spoiler lesbian character] isn’t actually gay in the book, but just appears gay, so I’m hopeful but uncertain.

      I did NOT catch or see this flashback your referring to in the first episode, and my eyes are always glued to Kerry Washington because… well have you seen her? So I’ll scroll back again and see if I can find what you see.

      • Yeah the teenage character doesn’t have an assigned sexuality in the book but they’ve definitely made her queer in the show, along with making Mia and Pearl black. After a quick Google I think Mia is definitely bisexual on the show, from reviewers who have seen the first 7 episodes. The flashback in episode 1 is toward the very end, unfortunately spliced into the heterosexual sex scene with Reese and Pacey! Mia is on a train with a woman and it looks like they are defo more than gal pals.

  4. Can I just say, yes, to Batwoman! As someone who’s always enjoyed dark characters and violence (perhaps a little too much) and who rarely gets to see a butch lesbian play a major/recurring part in a show, let alone the main character, well… When I watched the first episode of this show it’s safe to say I freaked the fuck out. True, the CW isn’t typically known for weaving dark, conflicted characters, but they’re giving it an honest run for their money, in their own campy comic book hero way, and I’m buying it. Not to mention, again, the main character is a lesbian! This show lowkey combined my two favorite things, and I somehow didn’t hear about it until several months into the shows run. Which is a part of why I’m here commenting. I haven’t seen much buzz about this show at all, on Autostraddle and around, and that worries me, because I’d love for this series to go on. I don’t get to see a lot of butches like me get to take leading roles. There is so much I identify with in Kate Kane. She’s a butch with a sense of style, who wears a little too much black (okay, a lot of black, but its a great color!), she spent time in the military, she’s unafraid to fill up space, to demand things, to be a little intimidating and androgynous. And no one is going to tell us we’re just purporting an ‘angry lesbian’ trope because just because Kate Kane doesn’t take shit doesn’t mean she’s an emotional cripple who doesn’t express the full myriad of emotions. Because we do, to the people we care and trust enough to do so for. In a lot of ways, I actually loved how many times they made Kate Kane cry, just because its an easy defense for all those articles and comments I saw out there trashing the character.

    So yeah, typically, I’m more the read and creep type of gal but I wanted to put a word (and a short vent of my emotions, whoops) up for Batwoman because I’d love to see more coverage of it from Autostraddle, commentors, and the internet beyond. Because you can bet I’m going to be a puddle of tears when CW cancels it, but like maybe, hopefully not for a bit?

    • Batwoman has already been renewed for Season 2.

      And I while I think my thoughts on Batwoman and Ruby Rose as Kate Kane are a little bit more mixed/complicated, one good thing that Ruby Rose’s Kate Kane brings us is butch representation.

      • I understand some of the backlash surrounding Ruby Rose’s casting, and perhaps backlash isn’t even the right word for it, but I get why some people were disappointed. Batwoman, as a show is not bullet-proof. It certainly has its flaws and shortcomings. But for me, at least when it comes to the Ruby Rose controversy, the character and the actress have shown enough chops that, in my opinion, I think she’s proven herself worthy of the mantle. Yes, casting could’ve gone a different direction, chosen someone new instead of someone who’s already established. That probably would’ve been a bolder and more empowering move on the part of the CW and I get why some people are upset they chose not to, especially since Ruby Rose has the good fortune of being beautiful, already well-known, and white.

        But, especially when it was first announced, there was a lot of ripping apart/writing off of the character simply because some people don’t think Ruby Rose is diverse enough, a phrase that kind of frustrates me. Because on one half I sympathize, there are certain parts of the LGBTQ+ community that have reached wider acceptance than others, and for those still struggling through the worst of it, I can imagine it really sucks when some parts see much more rep than others. However, I don’t think we should be tearing apart queer media just because it doesn’t check all or enough of our boxes.

        Sometimes I wonder if the outrage surrounding things like this stem more from there not being enough queer/diverse representation–period.

        Because in the end, we all want the same thing. To see characters like ourselves up on the screen, so that we can root for them, relate to them, and just spread the message of who we are. We all know it’d be easier to sort out the confusion that is growing up and ‘coming out’ (as anything) would be a lot simpler if we were exposed to those diverse perspectives growing up. We all crave that level of understanding and validation.

        For me, I’m getting a lot of that through an androgynous, butch, gay, character, but I understand why people who were hoping to see something else feel a little short-changed.

        And ha, I’m officially the queen of overwriting. Sorry I didn’t mean to @ you in the comments with an essay. This kind of went way beyond the context of your reply. But what you said got me thinking, and a dash of vodka got me writing. So hopefully this makes sense to someone else out there and it’s not just the vodka doing all the talking right now.

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