Pop Culture Fix: Ellen DeGeneres Will Be The Most Popular Lesbian On TV Through 2020 (At Least)

This is your weekly Pop Culture Fix, the place where Riese and I tell you queer things happening in the world of arts and entertainment and you debate whether it’s pronounced “The 100” or “The Hundred” in the comments. 

Teevee Tidbits

+ Ellen’s talkshow has been renewed through infinity. (Actually, it has only been renewed through 2020, but as long as she’s willing to dance around with celebrities and play silly games with her roommate, Portia de Rossi, on daytime television, NBC is going to let her do that.)

+ Pretty Little Liars returns to TV next week, and here is the first clip of lesbian lothario Emily Fields after the time jump.

+ DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, now with 100 percent more Betty McRae, is a thing a whole lot of people are excited for. Hitfix thinks it might be to DC what Guardians of the Galaxy is to Marvel, and that is quite a thing to say!

+ Being Mary Jane, which revealed Loretta Devine’s character as a queer woman before the hiatus, has been renewed by BET for a fourth season! Our own Carolyn Wysinger will bring you up to speed on the gayness when it returns to TV.

+ UK censors had some trouble with an episode of Steven Universe in which Pearl and Rose Quartz almost touched lips when they were slow dancing around. They kept the twirling but chopped the dip at the end of the dance. Wait’ll they get a load of this week’s episode, “The Answer.”

+ Broad City has also been renewed.

Carol and Tangerine Season

The Golden Globes are on Sunday. I will write a recap of the queerness and feminism for you after it airs, and also celebrate with you when Carol wins everything. While we’re waiting for that (and the Oscar nominations), you should know that:

+ Screenwriter Phyllis Nagy talked to SBS about the film and queer cinema in general.

“It was the first relatively mainstream gay novel that actually posited a happy ending, one that didn’t end in suicide or going into the nunnery,” Nagy says. “That was a huge part of its appeal. Also, it’s quite literary, though it had a pulpy publication and, indeed, I have a first edition paperback of it that makes it look like, oh god, a sex novel.”

+ Carol snagged the most Australian Academy International Award ominations: Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actress (Cate Blanchett), Best Supporting Actress (Rooney Mara).

+ The Hollywood Reporter wonders why it took 60 years for this lesbian love story to make it to the big screen.

“The challenge with Carol is that we’re viewing this same-sex relationship through the prism of a 2015 film,” says Blanchett. “These are desperately isolated women, not simply because of their sexual orientation but because they’re female in the 1950s, when there wasn’t a freedom of emotional speech around this stuff that there is today.”

+ Caitlyn Jenner joined the Oscar campaign for Tangerine’s Mya Taylor, which: a) Taylor absolutely deserves the nod, and b) Variety is calling it the “first-ever Oscar campaign for a trans actress.”

After the screening, Jenner told Variety that she’s supporting the film in the hopes that it will generate greater awareness of transgender issues such as suicide, homelessness, healthcare, proper identification and being the victims of crime. “I want to see more understanding,” she said. “I want to see the whole movement move forward. The movie brought to light the biggest issue in our community which is trans women of color.”

+ Awards Daily has also joined the campaign for Tangerine.

Led by two vibrant actresses — Mya Taylor and Kitana Kiki Rodriquez — Tangerine follows two trans companions around as they take care of each other and their friends in a treacherous world. They aren’t victims but they are vulnerable to the same kind of dangers anyone working the street would be — johns who don’t pay, hate crimes, violence. I love the plot description on IMDb, “A working girl tears through Tinseltown on Christmas Eve searching for the pimp who broke her heart.” That’s the story but Tangerine is so much more than that — it’s cinematic in a unique way that takes the kind of things we see every day on YouTube, Twitter and Facebook (cell phone video capturing real life) and turns it into art, into a surprisingly rich feature film.

Queer Women Doing Queer Things In The World

+ Now that Abby Wambach has played her last match for the USWNT (*sniffle*), she’s hitting the campaign trail to stump for Hillary Clinton. First stop: New Hampshire. She’ll be in Dover, Concord and Salem on Friday; and Lebanon and Keene on Saturday.

+ Caitlyn Jenner covers The Advocate this month.

+ Kristen Stewart got creeped out doing The Whisper Challenge with Jimmy Fallon.

+ Lily Tomlin rode her bike to the moon with the help of the New York Times.

+ Facebook’s trending topics wants me to think there’s something going on with Cara Delevingne and Kendall Jenner; they’ve been sitting together in my sidebar since New Year’s Eve, trying to trick me into clicking. Well, I did! Apparently it’s a clothing line.

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Heather Hogan

Heather Hogan is an Autostraddle senior editor who lives in New York City with her wife, Stacy, and their cackle of rescued pets. She's a member of the Television Critics Association, GALECA: The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics, and a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer critic. You can also find her on Twitter and Instagram.

Heather has written 1562 articles for us.


    • I think that’s what she meant, but Variety kind of cut it off. That’s the context, though, of the full article: that it’s the violence and prejudice that they specifically encounter that’s the biggest struggle facing the trans community right now.

  1. It’s definitely pronouced “the hundred.” when it first premiered, my brother @oitnily changed the wikipedia page to say that, and then people kept on changing it back so it didn’t say that, but then someone else added that to to wikipedia page later. but yeah, the point is that my brother is a trend setter.

  2. I have never been actually excited and nervous about awards season before!
    Maybe mildly interested at best.
    But this year…I am going to wail for a week if “Carol” doesn’t win ALL of the awards…with the exception of animated movie, special effects and male lead.Maybe.
    Speaking of, have you seen this piece on the producers of “Killer Films”?
    It really warmed my heart that the producers of “Go Fish!” and “Boys Don’t Cry” also produced “Carol”.
    Everything comes full circle, dearest.

    • I wouldn’t worry too much. There is no way in hell they aren’t going to give Cate Blanchett an award for this movie. She is one of those actresses, like Meryl Streep, where all she has to do is breathe in a film and she gets nominated for awards. Not that she isn’t deserving. Carol is one of my favorite performances of hers and that is saying something because she has an impressive body of work. I don’t think there is a whole lot of competition this year in the female category anyway that would make me go “Oh yeah there is no way they are going to give it to Blanchett over this person”. I think Rooney Mara has got a solid chance too. However, I am really disappointed in how Freeheld doesn’t seem to have any buzz surrounding it. Something tells me if the film hadn’t unfortuantely come out the same year as The Danish Girl and Carol, these awards shows would be falling all over themselves to nominate it for everything.

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