Boob(s On Your) Tube: Why Can’t Bo/Lauren and Carmilla/Laura Get It Together?

Welcome back to your bi-weekly round up of All The Queer TV. It’s going to be a busy week; let’s jump right in!


Once Upon a Time

Sundays on ABC at 8:00 p.m.

Mulan is returning to Once Upon a Time this season, and the show is also promising a long awaited “same-sex romance,” so Kaelyn will be covering any queer shenaniagns for us. The season five premiere did not feature any such hijinks and if I am being completely honest with you, I feel like the same-sex couple is going to be two white dudes from Camelot and not Mulan with another woman at all — but, hey! I’ve been wrong before! Maybe I’m wrong this time! Maybe Mulan will have a threesome with Emma and Regina and that’ll show us all!


Lost Girl

Sundays on (Canada’s) Showcase at 9:00 p.m.

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I do not eat too much pizza! The Ninja Turtles eat way more pizza than me!

I confess I have no idea what is happening on Lost Girl this final half-season, y’all. Lauren infused herself with the Rogue-style ability to siphon off super powers from the fae, and it lead to some mighty fine sex between Bo and full-chi Dr. Lewis. Of course that wasn’t going to last, though, and I don’t just mean the mighty fine sex. This week, Bo realizes that the more Lauren borrows her chi, the more neurological damage it does to her noggin. She can’t remember the simplest stuff, like that they ordered takeout and that her sunglasses are on her head. So guess what happens? They break up — AGAIN. Because being with Bo makes Lauren do reckless things like try to be immortal and so she decides they should not be together anymore.

Which is ridiculous!

Lauren already knew loving Bo made her foolhardy; this is not new information! And it doesn’t matter if she’s married to Bo or just pining after her and stalking her on Facebook (Faebook?) from a hundred miles away, she’s ALWAYS going to make dangerous, brash decisions because she’s always going to love Bo and that’s just the world they live in! Literal Zeus is on the loose, okay? Hades is building an army to punch a hole in the sun!

Bo ends up crying into a beer with Dyson, who also is crying into a beer because his werewolf heart is broken, but don’t worry, they don’t bone or anything. Bo goes home instead and bones Tamsin. Nope, just kidding, it is Hades disguised as Bo raping Tamsin.

Dammit, Lost Girl! I just wanted to see Bo and Lauren ride off into the sunset together and have a couple of laughs along the way these last few episodes. Is that too much to ask?! You were once the golden purveyor of Good Things!


Gotham

Mondays on Fox at 8:00 p.m.

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The Joker can’t be a ginger, I’m sorry, it’ll undo all of JK Rowling’s good work.

When How to Get Away With Murder revealed that Annalise is bisexual last Thursday night, right after a poignant and soul-singing Very Special Lesbian Episode of Grey’s Anatomy, one of my happiest thoughts was: The day is coming when no one I love with be forced to watch Gotham anymore!

The show has now written off Rene Montoya and killed off Detective Essen, proving once and for all that that the creative team never planned to use her as more than a token black character. They even used her death as a fridging point for both Jim Gordon and Bruce Wayne. And while Gotham is certainly giving Barbara Kean more to work with in the first two episodes of this season — and also potentially turning her into Harley Quinn — her characterization is still flimsy and her motivation is incomprehensible. But here’s the thing: She’s going to make out with Tabitha/Tigress at some point this season, and so we’re all still hanging on.

I am debating writing a standalone piece about this show and abandoning it as a relic of a time when you could string along queer female viewers with the promise of two girls kissing, even if that kissing was filmed for the male gaze on a TV show that repeatedly showed it was only interested in pandering to its straight white male audience.


Grandfathered

Tuesdays on Fox at 8:00 p.m.

grandfathered

You said the Olsen twins were going to visit the set. Where are they?!

For three glorious years, Fox’s Tuesday night comedy block featured New Girl and The Mindy Project, two female-fronted comedies that employed female showrunners. Tonight, a new era begins. With New Girl in the bullpen until 2016, Fox is rolling out Grandfathered and The Grinder, both of which tell the stories of womanizing 50-something white guys trying to navigate the world while being as handsome and wealthy as cartoon astronauts. Grandfathered stars John Stamos, The Grinder stars Rob Lowe.

The thing that gives Grandfathered the edge is that it also stars Kelly Jenrette as Annelise, the manager of the restaurant Stamos’ owns. The joke is that the person assisting Stamos’ character has to be a lesbian, or otherwise she’ll sleep with him and he’ll dick her over and his business will be ruined.

I’ll have a full report next week. (In the meantime, The Mindy Project is navigating maternity leave in its new season on Hulu.)


Survivor’s Remorse

Saturdays on Starz at 9:30 p.m.

survivors-remorse

It’s been an M-Chuck-heavy half-season of Survivor’s Remorse, so she didn’t have much to do in this week’s episode. Instead the focus was on Cam and his mom both hooking up with people who have business ties with Cam and regretting it almost immediately. M-Chuck did get the best line of the episode, though: “Who the fuck is Audrey Hepburn?”

You’ll probably be happy to hear that Vox loves this show as much as we do.


Carmilla

Tuesdays and Thursdays on YouTube

Written by Karly

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Danny probably wants to have more guilt babies than even Peeta.

Good news everybody, Carmilla finally comes back this week. I was really worried. Sure, it would’ve been strange if, after she threatened to kill everyone, she waltzed into the apartment talking about, “I’m back! I’m one of the lead characters!” But it has been almost two whole weeks.

In episode 33, the gang reminds us that Vordenberg has real power because he is board chairman. But maybe his power literally comes from the board charter, and the original charter is his horcrux. Theo and Mel interrupt via video chat to tell the gang they want to help free Vordenberg’s prisoners from the catacombs. I’m a little bored by this part because Carmilla isn’t back yet, and I just know Laura agrees because she keeps staring wistfully past the camera and ignoring Danny’s overtures about dying for the cause and for the right person.

Laura makes one last plea to Carmilla to help by broadcasting on the Ethereal-Net (LOL). She says she was wrong to be righteous and she’s sorry and Carmilla can hate her for as long as she lives, but they need her help anyway.

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Just eatin’ spaghettiOs. How about you?

Carmilla video-calls and Laura’s epic State of the Union address is replaced with “Hey! How are you? You look great” and I have never related to Laura so much in my life. Carmilla cannot believe that Laura is still asking her to be a hero after she just mauled a ton of people.

Then Laura says the most romantic/strangest thing to a girl who has blood all over her face: “Maybe in this story, you’re my hero and I’m your hero.” And it melts my heart because I am not a Slytherin. Carmilla tells Laura that evil sometimes wins in the real world and saving your friends gets you killed, Cupcake. Then she hangs up.

Laura doesn’t know how to process this: she thought her awesome monologue would totally work. Laura leaves the room to help Danny, just as Carmilla calls back and agrees to help. Perry does the thing where her voice gets low and creepy and she tells Carm that Laura doesn’t want to talk, and hangs up.

Next week somebody, for God’s sake, accuse Perry of something! Only two episodes left!


Team TV coverage you may have missed

+ Faking It Episode 215 Recap: Raise Your Hand If You’ve Been Outed By Shane Harvey
This week on “Faking It” everybody goes to detention together and is forced to tell each other the truth about stuff or else die of boredom!

I’ll be taking a few days off later this week to show my grandmother around New York (she’s meeting my girlfriend for the first time!), but will be back next Tuesday with a new Boob(s On Your) Tube.

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 805 articles for us.

36 Comments

  1. HEY EVERYONE rant ahead. I don’t even think this show is covered by BOYT but I’m not on tumblr or anything and I just have to share this somewhere.

    I was catching up on Masters of Sex season 3 and this season, the lesbians (former callgirl Betty and her wifey who’s played by Sarah Silverman) decided to have a child, and for some reason concluded that their only option was for Sarah Silverman to pretend to be married to con Dr. Masters into artifically inseminating her with her “husband” (sperm donor/friend’s) sperm, a plan which Dr. Masters saw right through when he examined her and determined she was “still a virgin,” i.e. had an intact hymen.

    UM.

    I love Betty’s character, and I love Sarah Silverman. But oh man, all sorts of ridiculousness was happening in that storyline, not the least of which boils down to the fact that the women have been cohabitating for like five years and having great sex for even longer, and WHAT LESBIAN WHO HAS BEEN SEXUALLY ACTIVE FOR YEARS AND YEARS HAS AN INTACT HYMEN? I mean, okay, I’m sure there are some. I’m sure there are some ladies out there who don’t enjoy penetration and I by no means wish to discount their experiences. But it just seemed like the storyline was written by some dude who took Buffy literally and thinks that queer women basically have sex with each other by giving significant looks and breathing hard and doing sweaty spells that pluck the petals off a rose.

    Also, way to take your only lesbians on a show and make their storyline (once again) about babymaking.

    Okay, I’m sorry, everyone back to their regularly scheduled programming! I can’t wait for the Carmilla season to be over so I can binge-watch it!

    • Um. Well. Yes, in fact there are.

      I am bisexual woman who has had multiple long-term sexual relationships, all of them with women. I have an intact (and apparently fairly thick) hymen.

      I know this because I had a terrible doctor who pressured me repeatedly to have surgery to cut and/or remove my hymen, in part because it would make it easier for her to perform a Pap smear, but largely because she kept asking me if it was a problem during sex. Which no, it never has been. Resisting this unnecessary surgery is one of the most horrifying things I’ve been put through in my life, btw.

      Maybe you’re right and the TV show you mention is full of fail, but as you describe it sounds like a reasonable approximation of my experience–having medical judgment placed on you because your body doesn’t fit someone else’s ideas of “normal” womanhood. Still happens today. What happened to me is deeply homophobic and biphobic, but I have had queer friends refuse to call it that.

      News flash: we all have different bodies, we all have different experiences of sex, including of penetration. And your words here really hurt me.

      • Hi Zahra! I am so sorry that happened to you and that my words hurt you further. Like I said above, I in no means wanted to discount your experience, but I’m sorry that I managed to anyway. Thanks for sharing your story.

  2. I have a feeling you are right about OUAT and they are going to make two random dudes a couple and then barely use them instead of making Swan Queen or Sleeping Warrior canon like a good portion of the fandom has wanted for years. It honestly wouldn’t surprise me because tptb have always had a poor relationship with the fandoms that ship same-sex pairings. Making Mulan gay in the first place instead of Emma and/or Regina felt like their way of saying “Here’s your lesbian now shut up about Swan Queen” and then she disappeared right after the reveal. Frankly, the way the writers/producers/and some of the cast tbh have handled this is one of the reasons why I stopped watching the show at the end of S3. I’m hesitant to give them yet one more chance to queerbait me for my viewership.

    • Even if it is Mulan, it’s not gonna be Sleeping Warrior. They couldn’t possibly have Aurora raise her baby with another woman instead of Phillip! The scandal!

      No, it’s probably gonna be Merida and Mulan (Brave Warrior), which kinda makes sense I guess.

    • Normally, I would be all over the idea of Mulan and Merida hooking up, but as a SwanQueen shipper, the idea kind of irks me. Not when the ACTUAL perfect queer lady couple has been there the whole time.

      (Anything would be better than some gross, white gay man romance though. Ick.)

  3. I had to rewind the last few minutes of Lost Girl because I had NO IDEA what the fuck was going on. At first I thought Bo’s hair going grey meant that she had gone all valkyrie, like she had somehow gotten Lauren’s conduit powers. Then Dorothy over at AE noticed that Bo had actually transformed into her father, which I thought was still because she’d gotten Lauren’s conduit powers and then touched Hades so had become him? Or something?

    But FUCK I did NOT understand that it was actually HADES pretending to be BO. The show has done the spy-bang thing a few times before, but I think this is the first time it’s ever gone to the rape well. There are only a few episodes left in the series – I really hope it can get it’s act together, and get Bo and Lauren back together, before it ends. I’d really like it to end of a high note. Poor Tamsin 🙁

    • I was just reminded of this important piece of information: Rape plots are VERY common in Greek mythology. Gods would appear to humans in some unrecognizable form, have sex with said human, and impregnate them with a half-god half-human baby. I’m sensing possible a Cordelia/Jasmine situation like on Angel. Like, maybe Tamsin will give birth to Hercules?

  4. I have nothing to contribute as far as any of these shows are concerned. But! I was in the room while my friend was watching Castle last night. I was just reading comics and didn’t pay attention to most of the episode, but at the end I heard something that made me take notice. It was two women talking alone and I was like, “That sounds gay. I must investigate.”

    So, anyway, Castle’s daughter was totally looking and sounding like she was in love with the beautiful woman she was talking to. And the lady was leaving, but she was all like, “Maybe I’ll see you soon,” or something. And then they made sex eyes at each other and then the lady left and Castle’s daughter made, “omg I’m queer” face.

    So, that’s me doing my part for Boobs on Your Tube.

    • Do I need to start watching Castle again? I remember getting a queer vibe about Castle’s daughter in one of the early seasons. I think there was episode where she was having some sort of conflict with her friend and I thought maybe it would be revealed that they were secretly dating but then she started introducing guys to her dad so I was like “Well, I guess I was wrong”. I’m going to have to investigate this further.

  5. I sort of like that Lost Girl took the logical route with Bo and Lauren, just as they did with Dyson. That route being ‘actually, this is impractical and the problem is insurmountable’. Part of taking their characters seriously is to also take their issues seriously.

    Sometimes people break up for good reasons that aren’t ‘we don’t love each other anymore’ or whatever. Sometimes you love each other, but it doesn’t work and you have to break up and get over it. That sucks. But taking Lauren seriously when she’s like ‘this shit isn’t healthy for me’ isn’t a bad route, I don’t think. They should’ve worked through this stuff if they were gonna get back together but they didn’t.

    Perhaps the whole thing will end with Bo concluding sadly that long-term relationships are never going to be for her. But really I think they just have no more character stuff that anyone is really invested in except whether Bo and Lauren will ride off into the sunset forever together so they keep beating that dead horse. Which is too bad.
    But I’ll always remember Lost Girl fondly for being bonkers and just the gayest thing ever. Also ‘teams are stupid’.

    • Real talk, tho, cause I’ve never understood: if so many people who came out of Slytherin were evil, why was there still a Slytherin house at Hogwarts 12 years after Voldemort? Does JK Rowling really think that 1/4 of the population is more likely to be evil than the rest of us, and that they have characteristics the sorting hat could pinpoint? If so, why isn’t the sorting hat working in the criminal justice system? Were there good people in Slytherin who tried to change it from the inside?

      • I always disliked that one of the central messages of Harry Potter was about how we should work together and accept each other for our differences and being unique is something to be celebrated but fuck Slytherins. And also, most muggles suck. I always thought that in the last book, there’d be some Slytherins joining everyone else to fight Voldemort, but naw. And I probably could have stated all of this more eloquently, but I am currently drunk. But for real, Slytherins can’t all be bad. It’s ridiculous. And Dumbledore and like every professor aside from Snape treating it like it’s the house for evil kids can’t be good for their psyches. Honestly, I was kind of hoping that the sorting system would have been abolished by the end of the series. It’s my biggest disappointment with that series.

        • I think we’re meant to view it from Harry’s point of view? As a kid he thinks “all Slytherin suck” because he’s got this feud, and in general Slytherin vs Gryffindor,…

          But then he grows up, and is introduced to Slughorn, who’s a Slytherin, and you discover a more nuanced version: yeah, he’s still out for his own gain, but he’s also a really good teacher and a decent human being… Also Slughorn + some of Slytherins during the final battle of Hogwarts only pretended to leave so they could make it to Hogsmeade and come back with reinforcements… (I don’t think it’s mentioned in the books but JKR mentioned it a few times and it’s still canon…)

          And Harry at least in that awful, awful epilogue tells his son that some good people came out of Slytherin and it’s ok to be a Slytherin… And he’s on polite terms with Draco when they’re grown ups. So yeah, I think there’s still a feud between kids because that’s what happens in boarding school with “house” systems, but the grownups then learn to let it go…

          Sorry I have a lot of feelings. But on a more important note, HUFFLEPUFF IS THE BEST.

          • Hmm, I’m weird but both as a writer and a reader, I don’t really believe in extratextual canon. Like I would love for Dumbledore to be gay but she should’ve mentioned it in the books, talking about it afterwards is just pretty much cheating.

          • Yeah, I don’t think Rowling was being revisionist when she announced D was gay, and I SUPER appreciate how intricate her knowledge of these characters is. The layers upon layers of story and the intricacy of the world(s) she creates are, I think, a huge part of why the series was so successful with adults as well as kids. Her characters are so fully formed that when she tells us something about them, I don’t doubt it. But at the same time…my writing/reading philosophy tells me that extratextual stuff is, well, irrelevant.

            So I have a great solution:

            How freaking cool would a novel about Dumbledore and McGonagall’s childhood be?!

          • I guess I was disappointed that Draco didn’t have more of a redemptive arc in the last book. Because I definitely thought that’s where she was going with it after HBP. Not that I thought he’d save the day or anything, but I certainly thought he’d do more than try to kill Harry, fail miserably, and run away with his parents.

            But yeah, if I put on the Sorting Hat, I’d probably be Hufflepuff as well.

        • “we should work together and accept each other for our differences and being unique is something to be celebrated but fuck Slytherins.”

          You have a gift for being succinct in the best ways, Blackmar 😀

          • well I mean, I used to feel that way but I recently watched an interview where she talked about the seven years she worked on the whole project before the first book was published, and how she always knew that he was gay. She had to tell the screenwriters at some point because they put in a bit of dialogue where he was mentioning a woman or whatever.
            She also talked about this whole backstory about McGonagall, how she’d created this amazing love story between her and a muggle that had ended with a broken heart, etc.
            And because the books have a limit, she couldn’t include EVERYTHING, she said sometimes she could work those details in the story because it helped plot advancement, and sometimes she realised she had to let this or that bit of information go…

            While I do agree that it would have been great to get some queer representation in the series, I do believe that she genuinely ALWAYS pictured Dumbledore as gay and didn’t just make it up to throw us a bone after publication…

            Also, I’m still craving for news from that magical world, so i’ll take whatever she says as canon. But I do get your point, and I have the same feelings for tv in general (like if they ignore a character’s queerness on screen and then say “yes alright he’s gay but it won’t appear on camera”).

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