Welcome back to Boob(s On Your) Tube, your twice-weekly round-up of all the queer lady things happening on your teevee! This week’s columns are back to their regularly scheduled days (Tuesday and Friday). Thank you for being patient and allowing me to smush last Friday’s column into today’s column. Like I mentioned last Tuesday, my grandma came New York City to visit me and meet my girlfriend for the first time, and it was wonderful to have a few days off to spend with her.
An exciting announcement: I would like to introduce you to Autostraddle dot com’s two new interns, Karly and Sadie! They will be tag-teaming with me to make Autostraddle’s teevee coverage better and better. I am so excited to start working with them and so excited for you to meet them. They’re both super smart and super invested in queer and trans representation on television. You’ll be reading their words and seeing their screencaps in the coming weeks. Please say hi to them in the comments!
And now: The queer TV!
Mondays on ABC Family at 9:00 p.m.
Last week Chasing Life sent me on an emotional roller coaster that skidded off a cliff and into the sea! I actually wasn’t caught up because it looked like Brenna was going to be dating Finn for the rest of the season, and I’m all for bisexual characters exploring their bisexuality, but, like, Famke Janssen and Viola Davis were making out on my DVR, so my eyeballs were needed elsewhere. Okay, but then my friend Valerie, she told me that Greer had Apparated onto the scene for the season finale, so I rushed to catch up. And there she was! Greer! Standing in Brenna’s doorway smiling like the sun after a hard day’s rain talking about how she was moving back to town, and the hint of course was that they could be gal pals again. That’s how the finale ended!
But then ABC Family pulled the plug and now there will be no more Chasing Life forever.
Brenna was a rare unicorn. She was one of the few TV characters who actually labeled herself as bisexual and said the word out loud repeatedly. The writers never tripped over any terrible bi stereotypes or leaned on any damaging bi tropes. She liked guys and she liked gals and she had meaningful relationships with both of them. I will miss her (and what she could have had with Greer!) very much.
Tuesdays on Fox at 8:00 p.m.
Well, here’s a surprise: I kind of liked Grandfathered? I hate the premise and I hate that this show and Grinder are exactly the same thing, airing back-to-back, and starring two white dudes — instead of The Mindy Project and New Girl, which Fox had slated in this block for three years. But the show kind of worked for me. It features a pretty huge supporting cast for a sitcom, and two of the three main female characters are women of color. (The third is Paget Brewster, who elevates every scene she’s in on every show always.)
Like I mentioned last week, the show is about selfish rich bachelor John Stamos finding out he’s got a grown-up son and also a granddaughter. He owns a really successful L.A. restaurant and the manager is Annelise, a gay lady who reveals her sexuality when John Stamos goes to confront Paget Brewster about how come she never told him they have a kid together. Paget Brewster says he would have been a horrible dad because of how he was a horrible boyfriend, then she leans out the door where Annelise is standing and:
Paget Brewster: Speaking of which … girlfriend?
Annelise: Employee. Lesbian.
Paget Brewster: Smart.”
Annelise: Job requirement.
Paget Brewster: I like you!
Annelise: Let’s be friends!
Later when John Stamos tries to complain about Paget Brewster to Annelise, she says, “Yeah, I’m on her side. She’s awesome.”
So the story of course is that John Stamos has to learn to balance his work life with her personal life and ultimately will rekindle his romance with Paget Brewster and move to Vermont to make homemade organic baby food.
Tuesdays on Fox at 9:00 p.m.
Sam the Predatory Lez is still alive on Scream Queens, but she hasn’t done anything notable or spoken more than five words together. She basically just follows the Chanels around and does what they say and cleans up the blood every time someone else gets murdered in the KKT house. Nick Jonas, who plays gay Boone, faked his death in episode two and revealed that he’s in league with the Red Devil, and now I’m wondering if it’s Sam? Wouldn’t it be so Ryan Murphy to take the lesbian and the gay dude and turn them into evil mass murdering psychos like some kind of commentary on Glee fandom? (Yes. Yes, it would.)
Wednesdays on Fox at 9:00 p.m.
Written by Carolyn Wysinger
Empire really took a step backwards this week and showed that it still has some growing to do if it’s going to live up to its name. One fan said she wished that she had DVR’d it so she could finish watching Judge Judy. That’s pretty damn bad. But how could it have been that bad? Was it lacking its usual drama?
The drama was there from the beginning as Cookie, Andre and Hakeem walked out on Empire to start their own company. Andre isn’t too sure but Hakeem is still looking for ways to get away from answering to Jamal as head of the company. Cookie doesn’t want Boo Boo Kitty Anika to be part of the company but Hakeem sneaks her into the deal.
Meanwhile Lucious has his weekly meds withheld for unknown reasons. He has also cultivated a little following of fans that encourage him to freestyle with them. This is where the episode starts to take a turn for the worst. Message to the producers of Empire: please STOP with the Hustle & Flow nostalgia. We get it, the show is like a natural continuation of the movie. We love the movie too. Please just leave it there. What comes next is one of the worst rap performances I have seen since Vanilla Ice performed on Arsenio Hall. Please never ever let Terrance Howard rap again.
Anyway, after the impromptu freestyle session a correctional officer played my Ludacris aggressively breaks up the group bringing about more Hustle & Flow memories (remember Howard’s character DJ went to prison for beating down Ludacris’ character, Skinny Black?)
While on a visit with Jamal, Lucious meets a new lawyer who promises to get him a bail hearing. He is a little fishy with his degree from the University of Guam but Lucious likes him and asks Jamal to set up a meeting with him. With the help of one of the prison officers, the lawyer, Thursty, helps sneak a producer and equipment into prison so that Lucious can record his God awful prison rap. His session is broken up by CO Ludacris and his band in blue who confiscate the recording. Thursty later pays some guys to beat Luda up in a parking lot and retrieve the music.
Cookie and the new dark stone faced Jamal go back and forth trying to influence Hakeem on whether he should return to Empire or stick with the new company that they name Lyons Dynasty. I will be happy when they are through trying to make Jamal cold; it doesn’t really fit him. Hakeem leaks his album online to spite Jamal and show that he has control of his own career, which pushes Andre over the edge and he tries to return to Lucious. Lucious sits somberly as Andre talks passionately about how much he loves Empire and how sorry he is for taking part of the hostile takeover. But Lucious is a cold piece; he asks Andre if he is still going to church (remember his almost affair with Jennifer Hudson?) When Andre says yes, Lucious tells him he better pray to God to forgive because he won’t. Andre asks Lucious why he hates him so much which prompts a flashback to his own mother (played by Kelly Rowland) who seems to have had mental health issues similar to the ones Andre struggles with.
Thursty succeeds in getting Lucious a bail hearing which he almost misses but rushes in with new “evidence,” which turns out to be dirty pictures of the judge. Needless to say, Lucious is immediately released on bail.
My hope is that all of this is just building the foundation for drama down the line for the Lyons clan. This episode was super bland and I would hate to think the show has already peaked when I still have so many more pearls to clutch.
Wednesdays on Fox at 10:00 p.m.
I hate to say it, but I don’t think Rosewood is going to make it a full season, y’all. Not even with the lead-in audience it’s getting from Empire. (Did I mention that Fox did a thing I HATE SO MUCH during the season two premiere of Empire? They recorded Rosewood onto my DVR by tricking it into thinking Empire was still on. That shit infuriates me.) Look, this was a smart play by Fox: Use the Bones formula but make the lead dude a black man and the lead lady a Latina woman and the supporting cast an interracial lesbian couple. Tried-and-true procedural meets DIVERSITY. But the critics kind of hate it. I’m not into procedurals at all, really, but I’m sticking with this one for Pippy and Tara, who spend this episode chained to their lab stations, working around the clock, but enjoying one quick snuggle on a couch and one quick karaoke duet (while being chained to their lab stations). Rosewood could get better! However, procedurals usually start really strong and fizzle out; not the opposite thing.
Thursdays on ABC at 8:00 p.m.
Bailey’s first day as Chief doesn’t go exactly as planned. First, she kind of ruins her surprise party by assuming it’s a meeting and shutting it down because she wants to save lives instead of talking about saving lives. Then, she gives her team four hours to figure out a way to solve a pituitary problem that is making this one woman grow like one foot taller every year. (The woman almost dies, but then she doesn’t.) And then, everyone talks about how she’s a Bond villain and stuff, but affectionately. Bailey gets a nice pep talk from Richard and is going to be the best Chief ever, thank you very much, she just needed to find her footing and her balance. I’m glad she’s like season one badadd levels again, though. I love Bailey v. 1.0.
In other health-related news, Callie’s got a new lady in her life that’s making her heart flutter and her eyeballs bug out of her head because she just wants to stare at her for hours and hours without blinking. Arizona overhears her talking about it and changes the subject real quick to hospital business — for example, April has some kind of plague and is quarantined in a bubble — but later in the day she decides that she and Callie can do this. They can talk to each other about the new women in their lives. They can be grown-ups about it. They can be happy for each other. So when they’re trading off Sofia’s books, Arizona asks about Callie’s blossoming love.
It takes about three seconds of Callie gushing about how Arizona would like this woman so much, and she and Callie finishes each other’s thoughts and also each other’s sandwiches, before Arizona shuts it down and affectionately tells Callie to learn to read the room.
Oh, these two! I’m happy they’re not trying to murder each other, but my heart does still ache for them!
How to Get Away With Murder
Thursdays on ABC at 10:00 p.m.
It wasn’t a dream! Annalise Keating really is bisexual!
Eve has taken Nate’s case, at Annalise’s behest, but things get real awkward real fast in the Grand Jury hearing when Nate refuses to lie like Eve and Annalise want him to. They want him to say he got into a scuffle with Sam the night of his murder, as a way to explain his fingerprints on Sam’s ring. But since he won’t do it, Eve goes with a whole other tactic: She lays out this really aggressive case to convince the Grand Jurors that Annalise is actually responsible for Sam’s death. It’s so convincing that they decide not to indict Nate after all, and so he is free to go.
But it’s not all champagne and caviar back at Annalise’s house. Her feelings are hardcore hurt at the way Eve went after her. It was so cold that it was obviously personal. And duh, of course it was. The thing is that Eve’s been telling herself she’s over Annalise all these years, telling herself she’s fine with the fact that Annalise left her for Sam, watching Faking It every week and crying into some Fruit Loops and then hurling her TV into the sun. Totally FINE. But that turned out to be a lie she was telling herself, and now that Annalise is standing in front of her and kissing her on the mouth, she’s having to admit that she’s still in love with her ex-girlfriend.
Annalise says, “It was good with you — and real. Too real. So I got scared and I left. But you’re the most beautiful thing that ever happened to me.”
And then they scissor! Eve thinks about pushing Annalise away, but that only lasts a nanosecond, and then they’re smashing their tongues into each other’s mouths and ordering Gal Pal t-shirts from Autostraddle dot com’s merch store.
After their night of rekindled passion, Eve basically proposes marriage to Annalise, asks her to move to New York and get a job at Columbia and they’ll be together forever and always, just real casual-like. Annalise says she’ll think about it. They smooch. And Nate sees the whole thing in his rearview mirror ’cause he’s stalking her.
Did I mention this year’s flash-forward is Annalise dying? It better not be Jean Grey who did it!
Tuesdays and Thursdays on YouTube
Written by Karly
Wow! What a crazy, amazing, long finale. I just want to jump right into episode 36, but I’d be missing a big thing. So in episode 35, it’s Big Battle time and Kirsch is injured. As Laura and Danny bring him in the apartment, Laura laments that she thought Carmilla would help them. Danny fights back the hordes saying they don’t need that lazy vampire anyway!
Then Danny turns her back on an open door in the midst of a huge battle. I cannot stress these things enough: do not wear your last horcrux around your neck and do not turn your back on your enemies. Life lessons. As soon as Danny turns her back on the door, that bro Theo stabs her. Theo says Vordenberg gave him an offer he couldn’t refuse, blah blah blah. Sharon Belle gives her best performance all season delivering Danny’s last words. “I’m not scared, I’m not scared, I’m not…” Chills.
Finale time! With Danny gone, the battle is over (I guess? She was really the best fighter of all?). Vordenberg swiftly enters and says he’s going to kill Carmilla. And he means right now. He pulls her in the room and she’s chained head to toe. Laura is mad that she didn’t come to help them, Carmilla is like ‘Hello, I am in chains.” We know this is all Perry’s fault. Perry gives the charter to Laura to kill Vordenberg (his horcrux).
Vordie says that if she kills him, the power of the board goes to the Corvae Corps, the shady black ops organization that was involved with the dean. Also it wouldn’t be very heroic to kill an old man, would it, Laura? But when he draws his sword, Laura cracks the charter over her knee. Vordenberg leaves the room to die gracefully and Perry follows.
That scary siren goes off and the Corvae Corps immediately take over the campus. JP goes to find Perry while LaFontaine, Laura, and Carmilla head to the library.
In the library, LaF is upset because they think Perry and JP are dead. Carmilla and Laura comfort them. Yes that’s right, Carmilla comforts them too. What has happened? Several hours later, Laura and Carmilla are alone in a cupboard. Laura is in shock that she ruined everything, that she killed a man, and that in that moment, she didn’t care she killed a man because she wanted to save Carmilla.
Carmilla is the best girlfriend in the world. She wraps Laura in a blanket, hugs her, and holds her cheek while telling her you did what she could, and you can’t stop trying, and don’t let these mistakes turn you into me. This conversation is a 180 from let’s run away and sleep in hotels every night. I’ll probably watch this scene 30 more times.
Then they finally start to piece together that the dean got everything she wanted and how weird ‘cause she’s totally dead right? Right?
No, she’s in Perry’s body, and she is back in the apartment speaking directly to the webcam like it’s been her show all along. She’s been the dean since the battle in the pit. (Even during the Christmas special? Is nothing sacred!)
The Dean needs help so Kirsch brings Danny’s body in.. She resurrects Danny with some Latin(?) and Danny rises, but she’s completely silent. Kirsch is beside himself, and Danny gives him a huge kiss. There has to be one kiss every season finale, you see. It’s not bad. It’s weird, but not bad. Then Vampire?Danny eats Kirsch.
The Dean is in charge now, and maybe we should see her side of the story. “The first gate is open,” Dean says. “Only six more to go.” The last, last scene of the finale is pitch black. We hear the Dean saying that spell again and MATTIE WAKES UP. Oh hell yes. Forget what I said: you can wear your final horcrux and turn your back on your enemies, and then just be resurrected.
For the shortest hiatus ever, Carmilla just announced a season 0, a prequel to season 1, starting October 22. And I’m sure the announcement for season three is just around the corner.
Sundays on (Canada’s) Showcase at 9:00 p.m.
Um. Tamsin is pregnant with Bo’s half-brother or sister after Bo’s dad pretended to be her and raped Tamsin in the last episode. That is what happened this week on Lost Girl. Y’all, what is HAPPENING to this show in the final episopdes?
Saturdays on Starz at 9:30 p.m.
On this week’s Survivor’s Remorse, M-Chuck and Cassie are invited to sing the national anthem at an Atlanta college, so they hire a vocal coach name Christopher who legit says the words “the performance is nigh!” to them at one point. M-Chuck doesn’t think the Star Spangled Banner makes sense, to be honest, and she’s even more sure about it when Reggie convinces her “ramparts” means “ram parts” like the parts of a ram you grill eat like kebabs. M-Chuck wants to be the lead with her mom singing backup, but Cassie amazingly goes, “Not a chance, Sparkle!” and shuts the whole thing down. Ultimately, Julias sings the national anthem solo and crushes it.
Only one episode left of season one!