“The L Word: Generation Q” Episode 102 Recap: Less Is More

Hello and welcome to the second recap of the first season of The L Word Generation Q, brought to you by the same network that brought you The L Word, a TV show about a fascinating young woman born with the ability to speak the language of the manatees.

Firstly, my dear friends, I am absolutely THRILLED by the response to last week’s recap! It truly felt like 2009 in the comments and by that I mean there were a lot of comments and everybody read the intro. What a delight! Secondly, I was a special guest star on the second episode of “To L and Back: Generation Q,” our podcast about Generation Q hosted by Drew Gregory and Analyssa Lopez, which I will link to right here as soon as it goes up on Monday morning! Don’t worry it turns out I have an endless amount of things to say about any given L Word episode including this one. Thirdly, the event recap with pictures of our live “To L and Back” recording with the Generation Q cast is also going up Monday morning.

Fourthly: last week, it was suggested I begin tracking throwbacks, and thus I will. Last episode we had quite a few, which I’ve listed below along with, when relevant, the specific season the throwback addressed.

1. Alice says Lenore is living in her house and thinks Shane still wants to fuck her Mom. (S1)
2. Bette takes a phone call from Tina
3. “I did vaginal rejuvenation in ’04. Have vaginas changed since then?” (S1)
4. Shane’s “been there” re: Finley sharing a one-bedroom with five roommates, which is a throwback to Shane sharing a one-bedroom with four roommates (S1)
5. Angie says she wants to live with Mama T
6. “Do your voters know that you stole a billboard in the mid-aughts?” (S4)

Alright, let’s get into it!

We open deep in the annals of lesbian history: two years ago. Los Angeles, California. As we did last week and as we deserve forever and evermore, we open with GIRL-ON-GIRL ACTION.

Oh my God. I’m stuck. Go Without me! Leave me behind! Save yourself!

Lesbian Sexy Moment #4: Were We Ever So Young!
The Players: Alice and Nat
The Pick-Up: Offscreen, but as this was their first date, it was probs, “Wanna come up / get a nightcap / make out / judge the books on my bookshelf?”
Hot or Not? Well, on the upside: someone got pushed against a wall. On the downside: who picked Stephanie’s wig for this scene. On the flipside: before anything gets TOO steamy we are interrupted by…

Lesbian Squabble #4: Were We Ever So Young?
The Players: Gigi vs. Nat
Content: The removal of clothing ceases after they hear a banging at the door. Alice guesses it’s:

1. Postmates
2. Amazon (they deliver really late, she says)
3. A murderer

But nope, it’s Nat’s ex-wife, Gigi! And my friends, Gigi is UNHAPPY that Nat’s already nearly undressed with another woman. Gigi throws out zingers including “Are you fucking kidding me?” and “What a fucking bitch!” while Nat remains cool as a cucumber and Alice suggests calling the cops. (Alice, never call the LAPD on a person of color!) (Unless you’re actually just calling Tasha, who may/may not still live in LA and may/may not still be a police officer, which I would OBVIOUSLY support.) Gigi, likely inspired by the classic Indigo Girls song “Hammer and a Nail,” hammers a nail into Nat’s wall and then hangs her wedding ring on it. “There, are you happy? I hope you’re fucking happy,” she concludes, as if the only barrier to Nat’s potential happiness was that nobody had hammered a nail into the side of her house and hung an expensive piece of costume jewelry on it. Gigi returns to deliver one more FUCK YOU to Alice, who declares Gigi “dramatic.”

Who Wins? The OFTEN UNFAIR but unfortunately relatively universal rule of post-breakup blowouts is that the less hysterical one wins, even if the hysterical one is CORRECT and the calm one is INCORRECT. In this case, Nat’s both correct and less hysterical, so she wins a daily double. However, Alice is spooked: a small victory for Gigi and her toolbox.

I don’t wanna jump to conclusions before she gets to the door but that Postmates delivery person does NOT appear to have remembered my Kale Lemonade

Alice: So you were married to that person?
Nat: Yeah. She’s a really great Mom.

Alice and Nat jump back into the rudely interrupted makeout and we jump into the opening credits!

Back in present day sunny L.A., Sophie’s stoked about her and Dani’s last-minute engagement party, to which she plans to invite her entire family including third cousins, while hoping they won’t all actually show up. Dani’s got big news, though: she’s leaving The Glass Power Tower of Daddy’s Terror Inc to run PR for Bette Porter’s mayoral campaign! Sophie’s reaction to this news is not exactly what Dani had hoped for.

Lesbian Squabble #5: The Imperfect Message
In the Ring: Sophie vs. Dani
Content: Sophie would’ve liked to be consulted before Dani switched careers, as they were supposed to be “slowing down,” a term which means basically nothing and is not expanded upon. Dani thought Sophie would be happy for her. I assume, without any supporting evidence, that this must be money-related, as surely Dani’s salary is gonna decrease by 500% as she moves out of “doing evil” into “doing good.’ Although I don’t think a couple has to agree on all of their individual life path decisions, it’s 100% bananas and genuinely suspicious that Dani didn’t talk to Sophie about her hopes and dreams before talking to Bette, even! Then, Micah drops in, delivering his internal monologue about whether or not it’s cool to use a gift card on his date with Jose. Sophie suggests delaying the engagement party. Micah smells stress sweat.
Who Wins? Micah! He’s done great problem-solving re: his gift card. He’s gonna use it!

We then ascend to the upper echelons of power lesbianism, where it seems Finley has indeed decided to crash at Shane’s indefinitely. She’s even done some shopping! At the Dollar Store. And made Shane undoubtedly inferior coffee out of a “packet thing.”

This coffee tastes like poopy shit!

Finley: So, I heard three voices coming out of your room last night. How wasted were you?
Shane: I wasn’t.
Finley: Seriously though, no judgment. I don’t think I’ve ever had sober sex. I need that liquid courage, you know? Or like, I can’t even tell if someone’s into me.
Shane: Just try listening and they’ll tell ya.
Finley: That’s deep.

Shane begins to explain that there may’ve been a misunderstanding regarding Finley’s indefinite shacking up with Shane but she’s interrupted by a delivery guy who clearly just stepped off the set of The Matrix where he was one of 100 package-delivery clones. Shane denies being Shane, which’ll definitely ensure she never has to open that envelope.

Finley asks who was at the door. Shane, trotting downstairs with her orange juice to be depressed, ignores the question and asks one of her own: “Just wondering how long you’re planning on staying.” I hope forever, because I am really enjoying this?

And then I was like “sure I’ll shake your hand but you should know I was elbow deep in your ex-girlfriend earlier this afternoon.”

“One week,” Finley says, jocular. “Two max. You know what? Let’s not put a max on it.”

I know people have issues with this storyline but sorry I love it!!!

Over at The Evil Empire, Dad’s hoping Dani loves her office, which is the size of a small shopping mall. Probably she’s gonna do aerobics in there or host a Stitch-n-Bitch.

That’s right, you drink it first so I know it’s not poison

Dani says Dad raised her to do what’s right and be independent, and she’s SUPER grateful for the job, but Bette Porter offered her a position running PR for her campaign. Dad is, unsurprisingly, very upset about this twist in the life story he wrote his daughter, who then tries a follow-up blow-softener of “I proposed to Sophie. So that’s good news at least.”

“That’s a lot for one morning,” Dad says. Ouch.

It was poison

I haven’t swallowed yet

Clearly he has not done the math regarding how much free morning time L Word Lesbians have. These ladies can wake up, have morning sex, shower, don trendy apparel, do full hair and makeup, drive to The Planet, find parking, drink coffee, process somebody’s entire breakup, say something passive-aggressive, definitely leave whatever food they ordered at the table and make it all the way to work in Canada by 9am.

Angie’s got the day off school AND is grounded, so it’s take Your Daughter to Bette 2020 HQ Work Day!

I have arrived, where are my ten horsemen and 16 ladies-in-waiting?

Angie is tasked with preparing mailers and wants to invite Jordi to come look cute while she stamps envelopes but Bette’s not too keen on Jordi, a notorious drug pusher of the vaping variety. Angie declines the suggestion to invite a classmate, ’cause she hates everybody at that private school Bette’s forcing her to attend. I feel sad for Angie!

At The Aloce Show, Handyman Finley’s doing some shelves and Sophie’s agonizing over Dani’s big job switcharoo.


Finley: Are you guys both gonna wear like, dresses?
Sophie: Why you gotta say it like that.
Finley: I dunno… I’m grossed out.

This line is clearly not cool but something about the delivery makes you feel sad for Finley rather than mad at her — like there’s some deep internalized homophobia swirling around beneath those puppy dog ears. This shame could probably be cured with a brief dip into the pond of existential despair/hope known as Lesbian Wedding Instagram.

Sophie says she’s not sure what a good marriage looks like ’cause her Dad left her Mom when she was 12, and Finley says she’s got no clue either — her parents kicked her out and sleep in separate beds. This tracks. We’re all doomed. Anyhow, network’s here!

Yeah, I have an entire closet of really cute glasses that flatter my face shape, what of it?

Alice expects the network bosses have arrived to congratulate them on knocking it out of the park with Bette’s live dramatic reading mash-up of Meredith Brooks’ “Bitch” and Jewel’s “Pieces of You.” They basically scored the Gettysburg Address! This meeting is gonna be great! Sophie’s not so sure.

Back to Bette 2020 HQ!

When asked for Comment, female Porter voters explained, “I want her to push me up against a wall”

Dani has arrived with a lesbian houseplant for her office, but Pierce is like, it is not that kind of office my friend. Get a carpet square and meet me in Bette’s office for a meeting.

Once this plant reaches its full size, it will eat everybody’s organs and wipe out humanity as we know it

Dani’s stopped in her tracks by Judy Chicago’s “Through The Flower,” hanging on Bette’s wall. “Judy Chicago loaned it to me,” Bette flexes. She waxes poetic on Judy’s inspirational focus and drive. Dani is AROUSED.

Back at The Aloce Show, the network is very mad. Dr. Oz was waiting in the hallway all night prepared to steam a vagina, only to see himself replaced by Bette Porter. This is the only thing that Dr. Oz has in common with the lesbians of Los Angeles.

Well, as you can see I am a cis white man, which means I have a lot of institutional power, and there’s basically nothing you can do to stop me, neener neener neener

“When we bought your podcast, we bought a brand. A poppy, fun, lesbian brand,” says Barry. “We wanna build off that.” (Throwback #7: Alice’s podcast, S4-S5)

“I do too, I really do,” responds Alice, a poppy fun lesbian, “It’s just I’m a very curious person, and i think my audience is too. And I just wanna give them a little credit.”

What if I had a congenial chat with a war criminal about his passion for painting portraits of veterans? Would that be more your speed?

Listen, I’m well aware of the original program’s myriad evils, problematic elements and dire missteps, but like, their multi-season insistence on referring to Alice’s video interviews for OurChart as “podcasts” is a gaffe I will never get over, and I am HIGHLY UPSET to see the reboot is NOT addressing this EGREGIOUS error.

Never Forget

Anyhow — meet Drew Wilson! You know Drew. He’s the incidental guy they call in to drive a smart woman insane! He’s written for [various important talk show hosts] and is here to take the pressure off Alice. With his irrelevant and unnecessary help, she’ll keep her first-season audience, who definitely are incapable of intellectual development and will love every idea that leaks slowly from the pores of this asshat’s inferior brain:

C’mon. Pull my finger.

Finley, again bounding into an important room with the enthusiasm of a King Charles Spaniel, has written KID HELP on a post-it, slapped the post-it on her hand, and is now shoving said hand in Alice’s face. One of Nat’s kids is ready to hurl, and Gigi’s out Giging and Nat’s in a therapy session, so Alice is our only hope for picking up the kiddo! Can’t the kiddo just stay in the nurse’s office all day waiting for his parents to get off work like the rest of us did in the pre-cellphone era after we walked to school in the snow uphill both ways? I forgive it because we all laughed out loud.

Someone help me, I superglued an index card on my hand ’cause I was high and I thought it was the ocean

Alice dashes out, telling Finley to call Shane to meet her at Nat’s for backup. Sophie tells The White Men that she understands their discomfort with Bette’s last-minute booking, but they’ve gotten some great celebrity guest requests since the show aired. For example, Lena Waithe! The Network Guys are into Lena Waithe, just like us, but then are like “Yay, let’s get ’em to wear blindfolds and play a drinking game.” Sophie suggests “an honest conversation about the importance of queer representation in film,” which inspires them to nod and declare, “Drew will fill in the details.” [Narrator: he will did not fill in the details.]

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com 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 3198 articles for us.


  1. I haven’t been able to watch this episode yet because Canada, but I’ve decided this is my wishlist for the reboot, in no particular order:

    1. For Jamie Clayton to have a central, significant role and not just a token part

    2. The Return of Rose Rollins

    3. For all the characters to learn the difference between cheating and ethical non-monogamy so that everyone can make healthier relationship choices for themselves

    • Building off of this, I would also love there to be more fat characters & disabled characters with central, significant roles. I hope they change these things for season 2 (if they get one)!!

      • Yeah I have Crave :) but the eps dont turn up for me til Monday morning? Or at least the first one didn’t

      • God bless you for these recaps Riese! I love them. I have been an AS reader for years and registered for the first time just to say this. They are perfect, please keep it coming! I am also loving seeing queer ladies on the beat in the Vulture and AV Club recaps, and Drew and Analyssa on the podcast. It’s like a giant queer convo so good :-)

  2. Love love the recaps (and format!)

    I had a leftover third of a bottle of champagne and I decided to play a little game where I would drink every time a straight white man spoke. I was very pleasantly surprised by how few times I drank! Like I had to ditch the game because I wanted to finish the champagne …


    The question is, who’s gonna stain it.

    So far I’m kinda loving these truly wacky people.

  4. Thank you for your service, Riese. I also have a tip for my fellow Straddlers: Consider avoiding reading these Highly Excellent recaps while drinking any beverage that you do not wish to exit your body via your nostrils.

  5. wow i hate alice this season????
    why does she hate her life with this girlfriend so much??? i feel like if alice didn’t want to be with someone with kids she would probably have figured this out in the last couple of years?? the kids seem like a surprise every time. also this girlfriend’s entirely personality is “i have kids” briefly sprinkled with a dash of “i am also a therapist.”

    • Yeah! I’m really torn about this because I have a similar vibe with my friends kids like “I love you and I love your kids I’m just terribly awkward with them and don’t know what to do.” But Alice is leaning toward “I don’t know what do with your kids but I kinda don’t want to know anyway.” Just show me that she actually likes the kids and maybe I’ll buy it. Otherwise that relationship looks pretty doomed.

    • Half the time Alice is on screen I just shout “you don’t seem to want kids?!” like, shouldn’t she have thought about that before moving in with her partner who has kids???

    • My alternate take is that Alice entered this situation with clear willingness but literally no preparation- which means learning on the ground! However, girlfriend and other mom are already seasoned professionals and they aren’t giving her the space to do so, leaving her in a very shitty position. It’s hard to do your best when no one is expecting you to be any good and they don’t need you to be anyway.

  6. I normally despise sunglass inside. But Alice in her yellow blazer and sunglasses, this is a level of Mommi energy I aspire to.

    There are some representation issues (or lack thereof more accuractly) and seedings of possible storylines to fret about, but somehow, I really love the reboot.

    I love Sophie and Micah and Finley. Currently on the fence about Dani; it is truly bananas to change jobs and presumably income level, without consulting your partner. That there is a big red flag.

    I love Sophie’s family!! They are so pure and wonderful and real. I loved Jillian Mercado, she was wonderfully cast. I am so glad that they did not make Maribel’s defining character trait her disability. I also thought it was super real to briefly mention how their dad left after Maribel was born.

    Once again this recap is everything I wanted and more. Plus, the captions!!!

    • Agree about changing job without consulting partner being a red flag (slash pretty unrealistic?). There wasn’t even any resolution to that.

  7. Okay so I had a really bad week, and seeing that you took my suggestion about tracking throwbacks is making me unbelievably happy. I’m so glad you liked the idea!

    So this is only the second season of the Aloce Show, and they bought the podcast, which means Alice was doing the podcast for like 10 years in total and was STILL CALLING IT A PODCAST IN THE YEAR OF OUR LORD 2017??

    I am ready for Dani to Google Jenny S-C-H-E-C-T-E-R and discover Lez Girls and pass it around to all the new characters. Did the film ever get released? What did end up happening to the negatives?

    Bette’s list of indiscretions definitely should’ve been way longer. “Kidnapped infant daughter,” anyone?

    Is Jordi actually a homeless LGBTQ+ youth and hangs out at the center regardless of Bette coming? That’s my prediction.

    Loved the contrast of Finley’s line about Sophie and Dani both wearing dresses versus Sophie’s family asking if she’s going to wear a white suit.

    When will Finley find out Who Shane Is (to the lesbians of Los Angeles, I mean).

    How does Finley afford all this TomboyX underwear? (Jk, she probably did what I did and got Iceland Air to reimburse her for it when they lost her suitcase for a week.)

    • Ooh that would be an interesting twist with Jordi. All I was thinking was how saying that your parents “just have different values” is probably the last thing you should tell someone’s mother whose shit list you may already be on because you and her daughter made bad decisions. 😂 I was thinking that saying they had a momentary lapse of judgement inspired by Angie’s stress over school might have been a better excuse. 😬

  8. The answer to the question in caption #42 is yes, although “trying” isn’t really necessary since anatomy naturally makes it happen.

  9. I also thought the “girls like us” line was odd! Could it be that Tess was referring to Shane being poly and Tess is also poly? The way Lena talks about Tess being “really good with customers” but not with her could support that.

    I’m glad we didn’t have to wait too long to get resolution for the Jenny storyline. Implausible as it may be.

    Whatever the Thing is that is the reason Bette is running – and I do think it has to do with Kit – it’s weird that she wouldn’t disclose that to Dani along with everything else.

    Love the recaps!

    • It’s weird that people don’t know if it was Kit! Kit was famous in-universe, no way it wasn’t all over if she died of an opioid overdose. Or at least easy to find via a quick google of Bette.

    • I actually read the “girls like us” line as Tess mistakenly thinking Shane was also trans. I think the poly theory is interesting though!

      • Same I thought Tess thought Shane was trans because that was the only way I could figure out this weird line??? But Riese’s explanation of Tess meaning _queer_ women I guess makes sense.

      • tess and shane aren’t poly though (unless shane had that revelation and actually is in a poly relationship, my assumption is that she is in a monogamous marriage but they’re broken up right now) and that would be a weird thing to assume or to say in a bar? i don’t think “girls like us” has ever referred to polyamory, right? like she’s either talking about trans girls or queer girls. cuz also! boys and nb people can be poly too. why would tess want the whole bar to be filled with poly girls, especially bc poly girls can also be straight, you know?

        if tess knows about shane already, she knows she’s not a trans woman SO SO SO in conclusion i’m like 99% confident she was referring to queer women cuz they talk about how she wants to turn it back into a lesbian bar!!!

    • “Whatever the Thing is that is the reason Bette is running – and I do think it has to do with Kit – it’s weird that she wouldn’t disclose that to Dani along with everything else.


  10. The likely hurt underneath a cringe-y comment is real, but on a lighter note, this made me curious about “the pond of existential despair/hope known as Lesbian Wedding Instagram”…

    • Agreed the “girls like us” comment was weird coming from Jamie Clayton to Shane. At first I thought she maybe thought Shane was trans? But her other comments about Shane being famous doesn’t line up with this.

      I am so disappointed with the Alice romance. I have always been team Alice and I just want her to be happy. Especially after that heartbreaking Tasha/Jamie/Alice love triangle that ended the OG run. This relationship doesn’t seem to have much in the way of shared values other than them clearly enjoying the sex.

      Maybe I’m alone in this but my dislike for Kit was on par with my dislike for Tina and Jenny (circa season 6) so I would happily have her NOT return. They were great actresses all around… It’s not Pam Grier, Laurel Holloman, Mia Kirshner’s fault that their characters and characters’ storylines were actually (mostly) the worst.

      I would looove it if it were Tina who had the opioid addiction though it sounds like that’s not the case. I would have a tough time believing it was Kit as she seemed to have a handle on her sobriety. I may be remembering poorly, but I thought they did a good job with her re: challenges and successes of sobriety.

  11. I feel like I’m in the minority with this, but I love Finley and I love her friendship/mentorship/whatever with Shane.

    But I’m also very sad for Shane. Can she just get a happy storyline for once?

    It makes the most sense to me that Jenny killed herself. There’s no way any of them would have murdered her.

    • I also love Finley and I’m in the minority in my watch-group. I think it may be because I LOVED Jacqueline Toboni as another hot lesbian in EASY? She’s an excellent actor.

      • haha! I too have been wondering if I like Finley more because I like Jaqueline Toboni and loved her in Easy

        I do think that may help me have more patience for her, plus all the thus far not teased out references to her childhood/rejection from her parents, it indicates layers that we will get to see later on but right now she’s just getting way too drunk and trying to over compensate

    • I like Finley too. She’s goofy. My girlfriend hates her for some reason, but I don’t really get the hate.

    • Also Team Finley. She’s cute and sassy and vulnerable and trying to create a New Don Juanita for these roarin’ gay times.

    • I like Finley too and I think I like her because she’s so much like Shane yet their pain manifests itself differently. Shane’s always been moody and brooding, wearing her pain out in the open, never feeling worthy and only able to connect (or disconnect) through sex. Finley is the same except she hides hers behind that perpetually peppy goofy puppy-like eagerness.

    • i also really like finley and shane! i think it’s cute that they seem to be setting finley up as the younger version of shane this go-around, except far more clumsy and misguided. and i like the idea of them tapping into shane’s generally caring attitude toward other people and especially those needing mentorship. i hard-cringed at finley’s drinking and saying that she can’t have sex sober, and i feel so bad for her. but i think they’re setting that up to be something her relationship with shane helps her work through? i know, high aspirations for the l word, but it does seem like they’re trying to build in more room for some deeper character arcs this time around.

  12. Damn it’s only a second episode, and I’ve already bought myself three power suits. Few more scenes with Dani and Bette and I’m gonna be the best power-dressed-but-also-completely-penniless lesbian in the neighbourhood (assuming I’ll still have a place to live after that splurge).

  13. I had to stop my a+ membership due to financial reasons but hell, this show being back made me remember how freaking important this website was to me when I first saw the original.

    Happy to be back!

  14. I did not want this to end. Hilarious. Also, I especially loved this line: ‘“You make Nat really happy,” Gigi says. I can’t wait til we get to see that in action!’

    They honestly have no chemistry/Alice seems to have no desire to be in this relationship?!

  15. am I the only person who really likes Nat and thinks Nat and Alice are kinda cute? I want way more of them…

      • Alice seems super weird in this relationship. Like she stumbled into it 5 minutes ago, relunctantly.

          • yeah, i agree the timing (?) seems off. like, it doesn’t seem like they’ve been together two years…

            still, i’m enjoying seeing a different side of alice, and i like nat.

  16. Heyhoooo, if anyone has any suggestion as to how to watch this while not living in the US, please let me know ;) #nothingtoseehere #movealong

    • In Poland it’s surprisingly available on HBO GO, but I have no idea if that’s any help when it comes to other countries.

    • Canadian here. I started a free one week trial with Crave. Downloaded the app and that was that. After the week it’s $10/month.

  17. I think Nat and Alice and Gigi are headed into a poly three way co-parenting nightmare and honestly I am SO HERE FOR IT

  18. Just some background on Bette choosing Judy Chicago for her office. The podcast didn’t really give her justice :) I thought it was a perfect choice. Chicago was the only major female artist that came up in LA’s golden age of artists in the 1960s. She wasn’t included in “The Cool School” of male artists who hung out a Barney’s Beanery with a sign that said “no f*gs allowed”. It’s 100% on brand that Bette would idolize her work. She’s going through a major revival and has had a few shows this year in the city. She literally started the entire school of the Feminist Art Program and Woman House, a legendary art space where every room was a different contemporary female artist in the early 70s. I love that Bette shared this little piece of LA history and culture with Dani

    • I loved it too! it was perfect!

      also i asked marja about it because i know ilene chaiken was a big art person and that’s how they seamlessly integrated all of those art references. marja was like “my art knowledge begins and ends with judy chicago” because she wrote a thing about her at some point, i think. but there’s another artist in the writers room who’s gonna get more art references into the show!

      • It’s also perfectly Bette “real trans ally” Porter to talk about how inspiring Chicago’s “The Dinner Party” is, despite that work totally ignoring the existance of trans women.

  19. Meanwhile, as soon as Bette Porter started Bettesplaining art I wanted to mute my television.

    Separately, I’m having the hardest time suspending my disbelief re: Jacqueline Toboni NOT being an extremely Shane-level hot commodity?!

    • I think the writers were very conscious of not wanting Shane 2.0, which is why they’re making her the complete opposite of Shane in almost every way. (To me, the same goes for all the characters and their would-be comparisons.)

      • yeah i think arika is spot on like… they’re trying to make the new people distinct from the old in very specific ways… like they seem similar on the surface but are very different once you get into it.

        i also agree that finley would be VERY successful romantically/sexually in this town!

    • Agree Jacqueline Toboni is hot as hell, but Finley’s personality is totally different than Shane’s and that is my theory as to why she’s not Shane-level in the community.

      • I feel confident that Finley will reach Shane level with time. I find her insanely attractive …except when she asked Olivia Thirlby to buy her drink 🙃 Mooch

  20. “…as they were supposed to be “slowing down,” a term which means basically nothing and is not expanded upon”

    THANK YOU, couples on tv always have these weird expositional fights about the state of their lives/partnerships, but particularly often about whether/how much one partner will work, which always feels super out of touch with the way literally anybody (outside of wealthy people) lives????

    • yes, this is lingering frustration over tina resigning from her career in season 1 to “prepare her body for pregnancy”

      • Omg yes!! And was she out of work for *seven years* for this purpose, given what Bette days about being sole breadwinner for this long in S2?? What did she do all day? How does this make sense? Do I have the timeline wrong? Aaaaaargh!

    • Haven’t watched an episode yet but I don’t care: LOVE the recap and the whole discussion. It’s a gift.

  21. Random thoughts
    – I hate Drew already. That said, I’d watch a whole show about the Aloce Show
    – I like Finley but I understand that in large doses that can be exhausting
    – Was that the conclusion that detective Xena Warrior Princess arrived about the S-c-h-e-c-t-e-r case?
    – I honestly don’t care about why Bette is running for mayor. I just want Kit to be ok (I don’t think she is..)

  22. I didn’t see Finley stopping the sex as an alcohol thing at all. Didn’t people see the part where she was completely thrown off-kilter by Rebecca calling her beautiful? My read is that it triggered her somehow and then things got too real and she had a panic attack. Am I alone? I really love Finley so far.

    • i mean she says she’s spinning and the next night she says she has to drink less to avoid getting sick with her again, yeah?

        • I read it as a panic attack as well. I thought that, combined with her comments about her parents throwing her out and the one about Sophie and Dani both wearing dresses being gross, meant to indicate she has some internalized homophobia stuff going on

          • Also – that she’s coping with by drinking a lot of alcohol in a way that just feeds into the shame.

          • It could be both a panic attack and the spins from being drunk! I have panic disorder and alcohol makes panic attacks way more likely for me. I would imagine that all of these things are wrapped up together pretty tightly, given how trauma often plays out.

    • That’s exactly how I read it–like I feel like she actually has a really complicated relationship with sex and that’s part of the reason she has to be drunk to do it, but something about this hookup triggered her anxiety anyway. She just blamed the alcohol to save face. Because the whole player thing is definitely a front, right? Like she’s actually really uncomfortable with intimacy but hoping if she keeps trying she’ll get over it?

      But probably I’m just projecting my own baggage!! Who knows!!

      • no i think this is a really good point! i feel like in the podcast i talked about this a little bit but didn’t get all the way to where y’all have gotten with it…. there’s a lot of shame around her religious upbringing, being disowned by her parents, feeling a lot of internalized shit around actually having sex with women

    • I also read it that way. Either a panic attack or some other kind of bad emotional reaction mixed with the alcohol.

      • So did I, deffo panic attack symptoms. The second she heard ”you’re beautiful” it tipped from ”just” a fuck to something real, and that was it, boom.

    • I interpreted it in the same way! I was surprised it didn’t occur to other folks. Maybe it’s because I was watching with subtitles – I saw Finley responded to Rebecca saying she was beautiful with “Nah…” and then, spinning out.

    • Same, i read it as them starting some sort of trauma-related storyline for her, internalized homophobia or like sexual violence in her past or something. But also seems like they are making a big deal of her drinking, so hard to tell.

    • I was only watching while I did chores so kind of missed a bit but I totally thought somehow the kid with the flu got Finley sick with Shane as the vector. 😂 or at least it seemed like that for a few minutes.

    • My girlfriend and I had that thought too! Our current Finley sex theories are: trauma history, body image or self-esteem issues, intimacy/panic issues, or alcohol issues.

      The way the scene was filmed felt panic attack-y to me, but I could 100% be projecting here.

    • As a recovering alcoholic with a history of panic disorders and weird internalised phobias around sex and issues with taking compliments… Yeah that’s one hundred percent how I read it.

    • i read it as both finley’s got an alcohol problem and she was uncomfortable/triggered being called beautiful. and just deeply uncomfortable with sex in general, which is contributing to her drinking. the comment actually hit me weird in the moment, maybe i’m alone in this perspective but i assumed it would trigger dysphoria in finley. finley’s not that butch, but is the butchest main character this time around so far, and her experiencing some level of dysphoria wouldn’t surprise me. it actually reminds me of a scene shane had in the original where she and carmen were talking about why she only tops.

  23. I interpret Finn’s comment about the wedding dresses to be more like a joking “ewww, love is GROSS” thing, but it definitely didn’t come across that way at first. But I still find her really funny and relatable, please add me to the fan club.

  24. I appreciate the comparisons of Finley to various dog breeds, because from about 5 minutes into the first episode my wife had determined that Finley is a yellow labrador in human form and makes various dog noises whenever she appears on screen.

    ALSO as Shane is very clearly going to buy the bar for the hot bartender couple, I want to know if she’s going to randomly stick a single barber’s chair in there and call it Planet Wax

    ALSO could we start getting counts of how many times Bette stares out of a window and then turns and looks over her shoulder, because it feels like this happens multiple times per scene.

    ALSO did anyone else think “that’s a really big door” re: Shane’s house

  25. Finley: Are you guys both gonna wear like, dresses?
    Sophie: Why you gotta say it like that.
    Finley: I dunno… I’m grossed out.

    I hope they make this line into a learning moment that better supports femme and dress wearing godxesses out there. SO MUCH INTERNALIZED HOMOPHOBIA AND TOXIC MASCULINITY. Not okay no matter who delivers the line.

    As a more masc non-binary humanoid, this line left with me feeling bitter and disappointed.

  26. I think it is Tina and not Kit with the opioid issue. Obviously she is not dead, but her addiction lead to their break up. Would explain 1. what happened between Bette and Tina which they haven’t explained yet after two episodes and 2. how the famous Kit Porter could be dead but nobody knows/talks about it being the reason Bette is running for mayor 3. why Bette has full custody of Angie.

    • I like that idea, but didn’t Bette in episode 1 say I’ll send you to mamma t? Or was it Angie asking to live with her. Also, if Kit was alive wouldn’t Tina want to leverage her star power for votes?

    • OMG I think you have cracked the case!!

      The part I thought weird about Kit suddenly dying via opiate OD, is that she has been surrounded by every sort of substance through her life as a recording artist, being in the scene as she she was.

      By Kit’s age, after decades of recreational drug use, people usually have a propensity for what is their “drug of choice” (and especially if we assume she’s tried a lot of them). She never showed interest in opiates before. She has expressed interest in cocaine, and her problem substance was alcohol. I just don’t see it likely for her to develop a post-menopausal opiate addiction out of nowhere…unless she started taking them after some sort of major accident or surgery. 🤔

      Lastly, as people mentioned, how could a relatively famous recording artist manage to overdose, in LA, and there he no publicity at all? I don’t think it would be a secret. It would have definitely come up when going over the scandals for the campaign, it would have probably been all over the internet. Honestly, Kit would have had an Instagram/Facebook for her public persona of artist and venue owner and there would certainly be mention of such an untimely end on her social media.

      I think it may be Tina too!! How could their possibly be another reason Bette has Angie 24/7 and Tina is…clearly nowhere near LA.

    • Hono yes that makes sense! It could also explain Bette’s “do you want me to tell Mama T what you did today” which apparently immediately put an end to Angie’s threat that she wanted to go and live with Tina? And I agree that Kit’s death/connection to opioids wouldn’t be a secret in LA.
      But ALSO: I feel like Felicity is somehow connected to Bette’s secret or knows about it?

    • it’s not tina

      i don’t know if it’s kit or not but i do know that it isn’t tina

      also is it annoying when i do this (indicate things i’m aware of because i’ve already seen episode 103) (although to be fair this info is available in other articles about the show) would you guys rather I let you speculate
      do i mark this as a spoiler
      how do i live
      how do any of us live

      eta: i feel like probably i should not do this lol

      • Riese I am so impressed that you haven’t imploded yet with all the spoilers! But yes it is very fun to speculate, and I for one am not reading anything else about the show except your wonderful recaps, and the reason for that is because I trust you. So please no spoilers because your writing is addictive and I will just laugh at your spoiler warning and read every word and then regret it.

  27. So are we supposed to pretend that Bette doesn’t know that the Elizabeth A. Sackler Foundation purchased The Dinner Party and donated it to the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art at the Brooklyn Museum?

  28. Just wanted to say I thought you guys were exaggerating about Finley’s bad shorts on the podcast but they were actually pretty bad, which I appreciated because a lot of her clothes are clearly like, from wildfang or whatever, and would be too expensive for someone who can’t afford her own drinks.

    Also I loved when Dani made the Bette-looking-at-art face when she was looking at Bette’s art.

  29. I feel like the image on Bette’s phone during the NOT-a-murder-in-the-park-scene where Bette and Felicity touch hands is a clue to Bette’s secret? What is that photo? Could anyone make it out?

  30. I too am here for the inter-generational butch buddy comedy. Shane and Finley living together is giving me such life.

  31. Episode was pretty good, but what were they thinking with that Finley character? If they were trying to make her likable, then they failed. First impressions are important, and I can’t stand her. She’s trying way too hard to be a badass when really she’s ridiculous and not funny at all. Also I know they are trying to make her like a mini Shane but let’s be honest here, there will NEVER be another Shane, so they might as well stop trying.

      • Maybe Angelenos just immediately understand Finley better? Who of us doesn’t have a Finley in our lives? Bright, happy, slightly blazed covering up layers of undisclosed trauma and alienation which led them to leave their Red State/ small town and move to The City of Angels and Dreams. Usually with a side of addiction/alcohol dependence and messy drama. I predict that Finley will go through the LA “I’m detoxing and getting my life together!” phase too with some meditation/yoga/retreat, juice fasting and giving up alcohol/cigarettes only to relapse into despair

    • I love her! I don’t think we’re supposed to see her as a mini Shane, more a good-natured lovable fuck up.

  32. Pressing question for our good friends at Showtime, how soon before Alice mentions Autostraddle on the Aloce show?

  33. anyone else notice that post Judy Chicago moment, Bette & Dani are both wearing dark blue and pink but on opposite ends. So Bette’s shirt is pink and match Dani’s pants which r also pink. And the pink & blue are actually a visual reference to the Judy Chicago painting? And they’re wearing the same shoes in that scene.

    ps Natalice have 0 chemistry. 🥚

  34. “Clearly he has not done the math regarding how much free morning time L Word Lesbians have. These ladies can wake up, have morning sex, shower, don trendy apparel, do full hair and makeup, drive to The Planet, find parking, drink coffee, process somebody’s entire breakup, say something passive-aggressive, definitely leave whatever food they ordered at the table and make it all the way to work in Canada by 9am.”

    I love this and this entire recap so much!

  35. I’m mostly enjoying this reboot/sequel/whatever, but even if I wasn’t, the recaps would make up for it (tho tbh I wouldn’t be mad if the junior mint thing got retired). It’s just so NICE to have so many queer people on my screen at once, it makes me feel fuzzy. Also here for all the jumpsuits. I dunno what Jordi’s whole deal will be but I hope they have time to explore it. And just get Alice away from those kids since they make her so miserable.

  36. Episode wasn’t as good (though still real good!) as last week’s, but I think this recap was somehow even better? Loved it. Laughed lots. Lived better.

  37. In an interview, Jennifer Beals expressed a desire to see Pam Grier return to the show and to work with her again, so there’s a glimmer of hope that Kit is still alive!

  38. Another excellent recap!

    After this episode I really like Finley now. I thought her acting was a wee bit forced in the first episode, but this episode had me laughing a lot. Finley is endearing.

  39. I realllly don’t want bartender (forget her name?) to cheat on Tess with Shane. Especially annoyed because they have great chemistry so I for sure want them to get it on at least once but I do NOT want that to be because Tess is getting cheated on! Unless that would mean Tess and Alice somehow get together – that would be freaking adorable! I just want everything beautiful and magical for Jamie Clayton (fully intending to love Tess like I love JC). Thankfully if it doesn’t happen here I can always rewatch the sheer magic that was Nomi/Amanita in Sense8.

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