The L Word Generation Q Episode 204 Recap: But This Lake House Has No Lake

Sophie’s driven deep into the woods of the greater Los Angeles area and landed in Ojai, a beautiful little town north of Los Angeles largely inhabited by wealthy white people who like to meditate and buy artisanal jams and windchimes. Dani emerges from the upper threshold to stand on a balcony like Rapunzel, looking down upon her visitor. In no time at all the duo launches right back into their favorite activity: fighting!

Sophie versus Dani

Lesbian Squabble #16: Bring Back What Once Was Mine
In the Ring: Sophie vs. Dani


Dani: The fuck are you doing here?
Sophie: Oh, wow.
Dani: You can’t even give me space when I run away into the woods, it’s unbelievable.
Sophie: Oh God you and your fucking space—
Dani: It’s all I ever asked you for and you could never give it—
Sophie: It’s not called space if you don’t ever come back, it’s called avoidance. And did you ever think maybe for second that that was me trying to love you? Fuck, you make it impossible.

Sophie drove 70 miles to Ojai just to make sure Dani was alive. Dani’s still alive congrats! Sophie would like to come in to take a piss and she might as well just keep her pants at her ankles ’cause we all know where this behavior will eventually lead!

Sophie tells Dani to call Micah ’cause he’s been worried about her ass and they banter about the local Thai place you pass on the way out of town in that way that you can with somebody you know like they know each other.

Who Wins? Sophie.

At this point one must let go of Time because somehow it is both the day after Alice and Nat broke up AND a significant period of time since Dani was last spotted in Los Angeles. Where’s Gigi? She was such a boss at the scene of the crime!

Finley is dressed up in an aggressively lavender suit and picking out flowers for her dinner date with Sophie so I am absolutely going to LOSE IT.

Micah: Hey did someone help you pick that out? ‘Cause it fits perfectly, it really suits you—
Finley: Yeah! A lady named Barbara at Mens Warehouse. It took her a minute but once we established I was not a 14-year-old boy, she was actually pretty cool.

Finley with a flower bouquet

But why is it called an edible flower if there’s no weed in it

Finley’s stoked because she’s gonna be the new referee at the Silver Lake Community Center! Micah is so super happy for her but also is curious WTH she’s doing because according to Micah, Sophie asked for time and space. Did she? What’s happening. Finley says it’s just dinner and by the way, Sophie asked for it.

Finley: “Okay, I get what you’re saying, and I think you’re looking out for me which is actually really nice ’cause I know you’re close with Dani, but I know it’s not perfect, I know it’s an uphill battle or whatever. But it’s Sophie, dude. It’s worth it. When something’s worth it, I’m not scared to make an ass of myself, I guess. Or, I already made an ass of myself, so there’s nothing left to lose.”

Is this foreshadowing? I am upset.

Micah at the flower place

Yeah I’ve totally been microdosing why do you ask

Meanwhile out in the wilds of Topanga, Bette has found her prospective client, the elusive Pippa Pascal! You know what they say about Bette Porter: you can run, you can hide, but if Bette Porter saw your exhibition at the [place] during a [time] and it made her feel [orgasmic], she will hunt you down and she will get you to show your art at her gallery.

Pippa in her overalls

Look I know you get hard for hot lesbians in overalls but I’m not about to take you to a bed and breakfast on a weekday okay

Pippa knows who Bette Porter is and yet somehow is not thrilled to see her.

Lesbian Squabble #17: This Business of Art
In the Ring: Bette vs. Pippa
Content: Pippa points out that not signing her work and escaping “far from the art world” should send a message she’s not looking to get found. Bette did the math but decided that she needed to tell Pippa that the art world was not ready for her when she got her big break and she was willing to do that even if that meant risking that Pippa would simply slam the door in her face.
Who Wins? Pippa, for going right ahead and slamming the door in her face.

Back in Ojai, Dani calls Micah and apologizes for worrying him. She just needed a break ’cause she’s not ready to get deposed. She sure was ready to PROPOSE, though HEY-O. Anyhoo, Dani doesn’t wanna talk to Sophie about the charges, but before Sophie can even take note of this resistance, Dani is already getting defensive about it. Everybody’s doing great!

Sophie and Dani sitting outside with takeout

You mean it? The tiny caterpillar inside that box will one day become a butterfly?

She asks if Sophie can undo the past month but Sophie says nope, however she will always be there for Dani.

“You meant a lot to me, Dani. You still do,” Sophie says. “I wish you believed that.” She does, of course, of course she believes that. It doesn’t change any of the other stuff, but she’d never doubt that.

But then she reaches out to Sophie’s face, and Sophie leans into her palm, and Dani pulls her in, and they kiss, and she is sad and the world is fucked up and this is familiar and hot and distracting and therefore here we are, of course, of course we are here.

Sophie and Dani making out

Lesbian Sexy Moment #3: Ah, These Old Chestnuts
The Players: Sophie and Dani
The Pick-Up: Sophie’s lips on Dani’s hand
Hot or Not? Of course! Of course of course! There’s a moment, when they’re already partially undressed, already in bed, already re-treading all the slopes and angles of each other’s familiar bodies when Sophie says “no, wait, we can’t,” and there is a pause, and Dani says “we can” and she tells Sophie to touch her and she does and we can’t see it but we know exactly what she’s feeling right, right of course we do, and then she’s a goner. They’ll be fucking for hours, bless their emotionally self-destructive hearts.

Back at the LGBTQIA+ Center, Micah’s wrapping up his big work day of having a morning walk with Maribel, visiting Sophie at work, catching up with Dani on the phone and talking to Finley about flowers and her emotions and is ready to finally head out for some social time — specifically that double date with aforementioned lawyer. Alas, Angelica Porter-Kennard is loitering in the lobby because she’s kinda going through something.

Micah and Angie in the lobby

Hey um sorry if this is weird but like, I have a Jordi for Prom Queen flyer and I was just wondering if you could hang it in the window?

Micah’s ready to hook her up with some resources but Angie needs to talk to someone … like, now? Micah says she can come back in the morning but yannow, Angie’s face and her feelings and before he knows it he’s getting her signed in for a session.

Back at the Dana Fairbanks Memorial Tavern, Shane’s puzzled by a projector when Tess texts to say she won’t make it back in time for movie night.

text from Tess saying she won't make it tonight but she's sorry and it won't happen again

Shane on her phone in the back office of Dana's

Please… send… nudes

It’s ok because also Finley was definitely part of the plan they recounted earlier this morning and absolutely was not actually on the schedule because as we know she has other plans! Listen, we can all have movie night at home you know?

It is now past nightfall and Pippa emerges from her studio to find that Bette Porter is still lurking outside in her coat like a total creep!

Bette sitting outside

Hello, I have been trying to reach you about your car’s extended warranty—

Pippa like "wtf"

Once again we have a Yale Art School Tale, in this one Bette recalls Pippa’s art changing her on a molecular level and inspiring her to change her major to Art History. She drove to NYC during finals to see Pippa’s first post-grad show and she was there at the opening of the first museum show at the Studio Museum of Harlem and she protested when Pippa got dropped from the Whitney Biennial and also Pippa’s op-ed made her WEEP and she NEVER let go of the fantasy that Pippa was tucked away in a mountain living off the land awaiting this very moment. Pippa is like okay fine, you can come into my art cave.

bette in the art studio

Not to be weird but I would definitely stay awake just to hear you breathing

Bette enters the art cave and her soul leaves her body.

Pippa: You alright? You gonna need some smelling salts or something?
Bette: Yeah I think so.
Pippa: Will wine work?
Bette: Dinner would be better.
Pippa: I will not be manipulated by you.
Bette: It’s just dinner.


I was deeply dreading the scene where Finley would sit alone at the restaurant in her outfit with her flowers waiting for a Sophie who would never arrive. The scene where the server would stop by and gently ask if she wants to order and Finley would naively reply that Sophie would be there soon, any minute now, and then eventually order a glass of wine, and the server would wince to herself, and hours would pass, and more glasses of wine would be ordered and consumed, and guests would come and go, and eventually it would be just Finley alone in the restaurant at the table, drunk and lonely, and the server would give her a sympathetic facial expression, and Finley would say “I guess something must have come up,” and the server would nod and slip her the bill. And the flowers would sit, un-smelled, across from her. And I would die inside.

LUCKILY we are saved from that scene because Sophie simply calls Finley and tells her she’s in Ojai doing some work and asks for a rain check.

Sophie on the phone

Hey, uh, so ——

Finley on the phone

Hahahahahaha ohhhhh right right something terrible happened that’s totally okay wink wink

While the rain check comforts me — it means Sophie’s not putting her eggs in Dani’s basket despite their recent ovary-bumping activities — not telling Finley the truth about why she’s in Ojai will absolutely backfire. Pretty sure Micah’s gonna blow Sophie’s cover within the next 2-3 hours!

Sophie sets her phone down and gets back into bed with Dani.

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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 3197 articles for us.


  1. When I tell you I screamed when Tess’s “someone” was revealed in the promo, I mean I screamed to the point that my housemate burst into my room seconds later to check if I was being actively murdered.

    I guess after the many glorious callbacks this episode, the bonus in the promo did me in.

  2. Watching Ted Lasso 206 and then Gen Q 204 basically back to back was not my best choice – I’m slighly emotionally wrung out, but I’m so grateful for this recap to cheer me up! Feels like this season is picking up now and the promo made me gasp.

  3. You know when an academic presenter sets up their talk for 45 minutes and then only discusses their findings in the last 15? Or when an abstract sound amazing, but the article itself is underwhelming? Or when a tennis player doesn’t really perform until the second or third set? (Hi, Dana.) I fear that this season has these vibes! Why are we spending so much time on stuff that the show explicitly tells us won’t last? Why keep drawing things out and you could, you know, just get to the good stuff? Don’t get me wrong: I love this show! But! I would like to move forward with some of these characters/plotlines!

    I remain optimistic, though. I didn’t *really* enjoy last season until the latter half.

  4. This easily could have been the best episode so far, but… Where the hell was Gigi??
    Yeah, sure we love her in sex scenes. But give her a line and she’ll flip our mind with her sexyness! That was the biggest low point of this episode.

    I actually don’t care much for the new Q characters, but I really enjoyed them in this episode. Dani and Sophie’s scene was great, I felt for Finley (I’m starting to be more empathic towards her). And Micah’s disappointment is just so real.

    I won’t say it was the best episode, because we need Gigi and I really missed her face and looks. It could have been…

    To read that Helena will be back made me sooooooo happy! Gigi and Helena? I ship anyone with Gigi

  5. Poignant Carmen and Dana mentions, both in one episode… they really should’ve put one of those trigger warnings before the episode. I was not emotionally prepared for this episode.

    So Micah is going to have to rein in Bette, Tina, and Carrie during a family therapy session?? Oh, Micah… may the odds be ever in your favor.

  6. Not Bette being lauded for her restraint in a post-Gigi-saying-wait world. Gigi deserves better, but this three days of dating or whatever has done more for Bette than most of her long-term relationships. Love that Pippa hits that sweet spot of calling her on her bullshit and also being an art simp and also wearing overalls.

    My friends are going to get so tired of me sending rambling snapchats about the milf count of this season, but Lenore was a very welcome surprise.

    I’m very emo for Finley and I long for the day when Sophie gets out of her own way, taps into some Fin-spired willingness to looking like an asshole or a fool if it means being honestly happy, and chooses Finley for real.

    In the meantime, Sophie is not even being a good friend to Finley and, yeah, Finley’s…Finley…but she’s earnest and Sophie, queen of asking for what she needs until and unless she thinks what she needs is a lil more complex than she can immediately put into words, should at least be honest with her.

    Micah drafting and erasing his text to Maribel did not spark joy. We are asking for what we want this season and I want Micah to tell Maribel how he feels so that they can stop going on double dates unless and until they’re consciously coupled.

    Love Angie being the only person in this small universe who thinks to get help if something bothers her rather than letting it fester and then trying to ignore/run/fuck/drink it away. Kids are the future.

    Alice (loves Army now) and Tom: I’m into it. Something about him having a good memory for gossip and actually knowing how to get Alice talking without letting her slip and slide or deflect her way out of it. Also he’s funny and I feel like constantly being the funniest person in every relationship you’ve been in is a little exhausting and Alice has held that mantle so tightly for so long. Let her share it for a while.

    Shane and Tess were very cute and the moment they kissed was the spiritual equivalent of that slow-mo video where a guy shoots a bouncy ball towards a tall bouncy ball display cage in a walmart and then turns to the camera to celebrate his bucket but the ball misses completely and knocks down a passerby instead.

  7. I don’t know if you missed it, Riese, but Finley stopped at a liquor store and went inside. So now the narrative is that Sophie caused her to relapse? Le sigh. Gen Q is so melodramatic in a way that the original just wasn’t.

    That said! This was the best written episode of the season so far and maybe of the sequel series. Everything made sense narratively, lol. Low bar but they cleared it!

    • I did catch it! It’s noted at the end in my summation of the ending musical montage. I think Finley was drinking last episode too but this seems like… it’s gonna be a bender. Which I do not like!!!

      • Yep, I remember her having a beer in a scene where she explicitly said she got sober. I don’t like a relapse for Finley either but I hope it develops into her having a storyline of her own rather than merely reacting to Sophie.

    • Finley is still just very immature, and like many of us a bit damaged. I truly think she’s the catalyst for kid that lives inside Sophie, but she definitely not ready for a commitment.
      And definitely not with Sophie. I wish their friendship wasn’t tarnished by their fling last season. It was so genuine & pure. We saw Finley in a very mature & empathetic light until … And who actually shows up at the church? Not sure what we were supposed to believe about her excuse for that one.

      But if there was any thought last season of her being a younger version of Shane … I believe Shane was never close to Finley’s childish and uninspired persona.
      I like Sophie and Dani and I just wish communication was better between the characters.
      I enjoy the drama but not when a simple sentence could resolve an entire issue… it just serves to make something trivial drag on & on while there are so many more interesting aspects we could be engulfed in.

      The original wasn’t as melodramatic? I think it was more-so in many ways..
      I don’t think I will ever stop cringing at the thought of almost every scene I can’t FORCE myself to forget with the Jenny character.
      Talk about melodramatic. From Circus nightmares to Pool Party Drowning … OY!

      I do think this season is low and slow on the sexual side. The sex scenes are barely long enough to feel the passion igniting before we’re off to the next scene. The original L Word was wonderful, and the first season of Gen Q had promise.

      All in all, I’m so glad they’re back, and grateful for carrying on with the same characters while adding new interesting layers & personalities.

      Will there be any sexual encounters onscreen with Tina & Carrie? Maybe I’d believe the relationship is more life partners & less mother/daughter if we saw some sexual passion …
      (or tension) … btwn them?


  8. Omg, glad you mentioned Dan Foxworthy, it’s all I could think about with all the talk about therapy and Bette and Tina going together. I guess there are now three therapists in LA – Dan, Nat, and Micah!
    Also really appreciate the level of detail in the callbacks – the caption that name dropped CORE killed me.

  9. The biggest discussion topic between wife + I during this episode was trying to piece together Bette’s timeline of artist obsessions. In season 2 of the original series she was all about her obsession with Allen Barnes at Yale, but from the sounds of it, the Pippa obsession must have been before that if it caused her to change majors, but it sounds like it lasted a while so there must have been an overlap?

    But surely it’s not possible to be obsessed with two slightly older female artists at the same time!! How would you schedule breaking into multiple artists’ hideouts? Seem implausible to me, in this otherwise continuity-rich production.

    Also, so happy for the return of Lenore! I really hope every episode involves some kind of exchange where Alice is trying to keep Shane away from her.

    • Right, I was like, this is definitely not the first artist she has credited with transforming her entire life forever. College Bette was very busy having her entire life transformed by various underrated artists

  10. Did…did I actually almost cry at the call back scenes about Carmen and Dana? Could it be that I have an emotional connection to the OG series? Incredible.

    Also, Gigi is so hot. I can’t get over it. I won’t.

  11. I think this was my favorite episode of the season so far! It felt a little more internally consistent (timelines notwithstanding) and the drama/setup for drama was *juicy* without making me want to rip my hair out for once

    I was a little confused after the Tess/Shane kiss though. It sounded like after Tess said she was seeing someone, she then said her sponsor told her she shouldn’t get into anything right now? Did I mishear her? Because that’s two very different things!

    Also good luck with the Porter-Kennard family therapy to Micah, who I’m fairly certain is not trained in family therapy??

    • Yep … I had to play that back, too …talk about mixed messages.

      Oh and how is it on the same day that Dani asked Sophie if she could make the last couple of months disappear (or go away) …. but in last weeks episode Alice & Nat break up and this morning Alice spent the NIGHT OF THE BREAK UP at Bette’s house …? I don’t get it. Who’s editing this? It’s definitely weeks because Micah said Dani hasn’t been seen or heard from … But the Alice break up part being the same day makes ZERO sense.

  12. Was Finley ever shown to be interested in soccer/coaching last season? That detail really seemed to come out of nowhere but maybe I’ve forgotten a previous reference.

    The plot with Shane and Tess and A Certain Someone may be a bridge too far even for this show. (What ever happened to the teen daughter who deluded herself into thinking she was dating Shane?)

    If Gigi doesn’t end up with someone worthy of her by the time Jordi is crowned Prom Queen I will be very disappointed.

  13. i’ll be honest I do not like sophie very much rn. You know what’s confusing, why so much of the focus is on Finley stopping the wedding and not the fact that SOPHIE CHEATED AND WAS PREPARED TO LIE AND COVER IT UP FOREVER. like that’s fucked up. So i’m very confused why everyone is more upset that the wedding got cancelled than sophie cheating. Last episode i was like oh i still want sinley to happen but now i dont think so. finley deserves better!

    I was sooo disappointed that tess is seeing someone. I literally jumped out of my chair when they kissed and was immediately brought to earth.

    Lastly, I missed Gigi this episode :(

    • Just so I’m clear, you don’t like Sophie because she cheated, but you’re fine with Tess and Shane getting together even though Shane fucked Tess’s gf? lol.

      Your take aligns with the way the show is written, if it’s any consolation.

  14. Even though I don’t want Sophie and Dani to get back together (so many relationship issues and mismatch), I enjoyed their rekindling in this episode because it felt more real to life… the messy, ambivalent, uncomfortable confronting of people whose lives were enmeshed, who still know each other so well. Even if all those old behaviors are still coming out (like Dani not stopping when Sophie asked to).

    On a related note that I haven’t seen remarked on in these (wonderful) recaps (thank you Reice!): In the wake of Sophie’s betrayal (why not just tell Finley the truth? Like she’s not going to find out, especially when they all live together?), I’m hoping future episodes may bring up Finley’s childhood/home context. There were a lot of references in her conversations with Rebecca in S1, but then the fact that she went home (for… a couple months? unclear) and then returned to LA went completely unremarked. I can’t imagine being back at home was easy, given what little details we know. But she presents it like it was neutral (in her conversation with Shane and Tess), when it seems more realistic to me that she would be grappling with that past and her present life in LA simultaneously?

    • AGREE. Finley has kinda been reduced to just the Sophie drama this season. There is so much potential for depth and nuance (family, religion/spirituality, personal growth) — and I want to see it happen!

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