Ilene Chaiken Returns to Her Natural Habitat with Soapy Teen TV Show ‘Confessions’

IFC: Prior to building and subsequently dashing our dreams & desires on The L Word, Ilene Chaiken had quite the career in bad television; she worked with master Aaron Spelling for many years, was on the writing & production team for The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (which we actually LOVE, but let’s face it, not exactly an Emmy Winner) (As the Emmies are clearly hallmarks of great taste, just look at Two & A Half Men!) and Grace Under Fire. Now she’s signed on with the CW for Confessions of a Backup Dancer, a drama adaptation of Alloy Entertainment’s book which “explores the glamorous and gritty behind-the-scenes world of a major pop tour from the point of view of the star’s troupe of backing dancers.” (Alloy is a book packaging company also responsible for Gossip Girl, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, The It Girls and The Vampire Diaries) Like Instant Star, but with more sex & drugs & Kevin Federline! We assume that this will be a prime-time hour-long drama, though we have no evidence of this.

I think Three Rivers (bad) and The Beautiful Life (canceled) used the same sentence structure to define their projects — let’s take a tired concept, say we’re going “behind the scenes” with a marginally interesting aspect of said concept, and THAT’S GREAT TELEVISION. Actually, this could easily be a new guilty pleasure. As we aren’t fighting for increasing media visibility for backup dancers (besides, of course, their unjust relegation to the “back”), this might be one IFC project we can sit back and enjoy like a good guilty pleasure.

SISTER SPIT: Laneia went to a show in Phoenix and interviewed the kickass ladies currently crossing the country with spoken-word delights including Michelle Tea and Ariel Schrag! Sister Spit’s New Generation of Queer Poets & Rebels: The Autostraddle Interview! (@autostraddle)

GLEE: Sing It, Sister: Why I Hate Glee. Some good points are made here, especially about the portrayal of women: “We’ve got Shrewish, Lying Wife; Sweet Perky Neurotic; Bitchy Cheerleader; Tracy Flick-esque Nerd; Strong Black Woman.” (@jezebel)

THE LYNCH CAN DO NO WRONG: Jane Lynch is having a very good year: “Jane Lynch is having a very big year, and it’s tempting to believe that this is a sign, perhaps from God, and that things will soon be turning around for the rest of us.” (@la times)

LADY GAGA: Lady Gaga has announced her new tour dates!

MADONNA: Madge graces the cover of the new Rolling Stone:I see myself in Lady Gaga. When I saw her, she didn’t have a lot of money for her production. she’s got holes in her fishnets, and there’s mistakes everywhere. It was kind of a mess, but I can see that she has that IT Factor. It’s nice to see that at a raw stage.(@rollingstone)

CHENO BACK TO BROADWAY: Fresh off her charming Emmy win and attending the National Equality March, Autostraddle fave Kristin Chenoweth is heading back to her roots on Broadway this spring, starring in a revival of Promises, Promises with Will & Grace star, Sean Hayes. (@nypost)

ADAM LAMBERT: As we await his upcoming musical masterpiece, Adam Lambert took he time to make out with his boyfriend Drake for TMZ cameras. (@ohnotheydidnt)

MICHAEL MOORE & GAGA: Michael Moore gives Gaga a random shout-out in an article for The Huffington Post: “I’m listening to Lady Gaga. I know not this Lady Gaga, but her performance last week on SNL was fascinating.” (@huffingtonpost)

GAY BABY BOOM: T. R. Knight appeared on Ellen and mentioned that he has been inspired by Katherine Heigl: “I want a baby. I don’t know if it’s going to end up working out, but that would be something I would like.”

SPICE GIRLS: Scary Spice has confirmed that the Spice Girls are planning another reunion! “We’re actually working on it right now. I don’t want to say too much because I don’t want to spoil the surprise, but it’s really, really exciting.” (@thesunuk)

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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 3213 articles for us.


  1. Omg spice girls reunion?!?!? I can’t afford $100 concert tickets :(. I’ll stand outside the venue and listen.

    • I don’t care how expensive those tickets are – I would (will) sell my body to see them.

  2. sigh… SPICE GIRLS you taunt me again!!! wasnt it bad enough that i was the only adult at your last concert in Indy that wasnt 10, a mom , or a perv (ok maybe a perv but that was “before i knew i was gay”, i guess the full 12foot life size scale movie cut out in my bedroom wasnt hint enough for me!)

    tell me what ya want what ya really really want?? i want scary spice to “work me out” !!!!!

  3. I remember seeing the Spice Girls as my first concert experience, and they performed the song “Naked” literally naked, sitting down with only their chairbacks preserving their decency. Does anyone know what I’m talking about? I tried finding a pic on Google Images, but searching for “Spice Girls Naked” yielded way too many terrible/awesome results. ANYWAY, that was a major gay moment for my 7-year-old self.

  4. We saw them on their reunion tour in 2008, in New Jersey, and I am not gonna lie it was pretty fucking AWESOME.

  5. The Spice Girls cancelled the Australian leg of their reunion tour and to be honest I never really got over the betrayal, I don’t want to get my hopes up again.

    In other news, I have a feeling that ‘Confessions of a Backup Dancer’ is going to be my new favourite tv show.

    • It devastated me too! I was even in the ticket draw (the one that they announced before the tour dates in order to ‘cope with the demand’) and then they canceled, the BASTARDS! My inner ten-year-old has hope that they might come this time, but you’re right, not too much…

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