The L Word Generation Q Episode 306 Recap: Questions For Us All Together On Drugs

Welcome to the sixth recap of the third season of The L Word: Generation Q, brought to you by the same network that aired the original L Word, a show about an aspiring screenwriter who Irish Goodbyed a beach party by boarding an inflatable raft with her Pomeranian and floating out to sea, only to resurface many months later with a film financier she met in Tulum and a really cute attitude.

Thank you for gathering here as a chosen family during the thick of the holiday season to read this L Word Generation Q Episode 306 “Questions for the Universe” recap. It seems that last week’s announcement of an upcoming musical episode was more exciting to me than it was to the internet-at-large, who commented things like “nobody wants this” on Showtime’s instagram while I sat here thinking, “but wait, I do!” See, one thing I learned from enduring the entirety of and recapping a solid portion of a little TV show called Glee is that singing and dancing is almost always fun and talking is only sometimes fun. So what are we waiting for? Let’s take a trip!


We open in what appears to be a mini-orgy, which is — although not quite as satisfying as Jim playing a prank on Dwight — generally a fantastic way to start an episode of television.

Scantily clad women having sex in Alice's living room

Lesbian Sexy Moment #5: Bacchanal Buffet
The Players: Shane and several unidentified extras
The Pick-Up: No idea but I’m dying to know — assuming Shane’s been avoiding the Dana Fairbanks Memorial Tavern and has never downloaded a dating app, did she simply approach these lesbians at the Silver Lake Whole Foods and ask if they had plans for their cucumbers?

Speaking of Shane, she’s not really participating in this sex scene. Rather, she’s gazing lazily at a resplendent display of entirely-to-partially undressed women engaging in sexual intercourse of various flavors while drinking alcohol straight out of the bottle.

Shane gazing lazily

Stay still I’m trying to draw you all like several of my French girls

We cut to the outdoors, where Alice is wearing an adorable adidas x Gucci tracksuit that is no longer in stock but is available at several resale establishments for approximately three thousand dollars. She’s carrying multiple shopping bags and talking to Sophie via telephone about this weekend’s Aloce Show Staff Retreat, which apparently involves drugs.

And then, Alice enters the domicile.

Alice in her cute pink tracksuit holding

Yes I went to the Grove and no you can’t have my Cheesecake Factory leftovers

Shane stands right up and immediately apologizes. Alice notes that this is a lot of naked people on her bisexual velvet couch.

Shane half-naked holding a pillow over her crotch

Hey Al actually I just wanted to ask you about this pillow ’cause I really love it and think it’d look great in my backseat if I ever have to sleep in my car for any reason


Over at FiSoMiMar’s, Sophie’s packing for her trip in her bedroom and Finley is in a different room, having found herself a great car on Carmax, where Car Buying is Reimagined! Despite being in a committed serious relationship involving cohabitation and daily communication, we’re supposed to believe that Finley’s completely unaware that Sophie’s going on an overnight work retreat this weekend until Finley enters the room where Sophie is packing. I will be subpoenaing records of all communications between Sophie and Finley from the 3-4 days preceding this moment as I simply cannot fathom how this has taken place.

Sophie looking at a pair of boyshorts while packing fora trip

Do you think these are gonna cover my entire buttcheeks or just kinda rest … mid-ass?

But this misunderstanding is necessary to enable Finley to have the expectation that Sophie would have time today to give her a ride to pick up her new car from Carmax, where the Love Your Car Guarantee helps you find a car that truly fits your life! Finley’s passive-aggressively irritated that Sophie’s unable to be her personal chauffeur, so much so that Sophie immediately concedes, offering to skip the retreat so she can give Finley a ride. This is relatable to me ’cause it’s the kind of offer I regularly made when I was being codependent in a toxic relationship! I was so terrified of failing to provide my partner the assistance they expected to succeed / get what they wanted, that I’d give up literally anything to avoid letting them down. But that’s not the type of relationship Sophie and Finley are in! This is not their dynamic! What the hell is happening?

Finley holding her phone and looking disappointed

I mean sure, $3,239 is a lot to pay for a jumpsuit but it’s Christmas and you love me and there’s only one left in this size, Soph

Finley’s like, no you don’t have to do that. I’m not sure what’s going on here but I hope Carmax didn’t pay too much for this product placement.

“Enjoy your trip,” says Finley coldly, exiting the room. Who are these people??


We jet back to Chez Alice, where Shane insists she was gonna clean but then she got so busy sitting in a chair, drinking everybody’s favorite vodka brand, “Vodka,” and watching girls scissor, that she lost track of time. But she’s sorry and will immediately decamp for a hotel!

Shane standing behind the alcohol looking disgruntled

Hey why are you making pancakes I thought I said I wanted waffles

Alice cleaning

Oh I’m sorry queen, now you want *waffles*?

Shane ruffling her hair, deflecting

Fine I’ll be fine with pancakes it’s fine

Alice, dutifully cleaning up the mess while declaring her friend a mess, has no interest in this offer: Shane’s coming on her work retreat and doing ayahuasca in the desert with her co-workers. Don’t worry, Alice exposits, Kehlani is on tour Ivy’s somehow moved to New York so she won’t be participating in this trip or the trip within a trip.


And then, after rolling eastward across this great nation via desert b-roll, we arrive at the work retreat, where organic humans in beige greet Alice’s luxury van of employees with green juice and a honk of cleansing spritz to the face.

Alice getting spritzed in the face

Here, it’s poison!

Sophie’s stressed and distracted ’cause Finley’s ignoring her calls and she thinks maybe she should just go home and deal with it? This is bananas.

“We are here to do team building and drugs! You’re staying,” Alice insists.

Shane puts her arm around Sophie and leans in: “Do it for the drugs.”

Sophie, Shane and Alice standing talking after getting off the retreat bus. Shane has her arms over her head holding a bag, Alice and Sophie are debating

I mean it’s green juice you know? Like how hard is it to mix together a cup of tightly packed kale, four stalks celery, 1.5 pears cut into large pieces, one piece of fresh ginger and half a lemon (zest and pith removed)?

Alice gives an inspirational speech to her team and says she’ll see them on the other side.

Alice speaking to the group

“People will never be replaced by machines. In the end, life and business are about human connections. And computers are about trying to murder you in a lake. And to me? The choice is easy.”

Alice's team celebrating

Let’s throw our laptops in a lake!!!!!

Throughout this moment of communal cheer, Shane’s off to the side, leaning on a tree like Jordan Fucking Catalano. The Original Series Shane vibes here are so thick: the lazy gait, her whole outfit, the sunglasses, the permanent hangover, the devil-may-care “sure, stab me in the face, whatever” attitude? I love it! I missed this reclining chaos demon!

And also, her frank insight:

Shane: “No one thinks this retreat is about work.”
Alice: “What is it about?”
Shane: “You.”


As we transition into the Drug Hut the house music chants I’m gonna lose control, I’m gonna lose control, yeah!

Within a pillow-dappled yurt, Mercury addresses the group from her self-appointed position as a spiritual leader. They are here with one simple purpose: to open their mind’s eye to the universe’s life force energy!

Mercury, hippie woman in a beige robe, clutching her chest

My name is Mercury and I identify as your daddy

Group sitting on pillows in the yurt looking at Mercury

Ooo this is more fun than I was expecting

Mercury guides them in some brief deep breathing before distributing mini-clipboards upon which they are instructed to write down their Question for the Universe. Unfortunately, nobody draws a picture of a little bird sitting on top of a cake. Sophie’s fidgeting. Shane’s skeptical. Alice is, of course, very open to what the universe will bring her.

everyone praying

Baruch atah Adonai Eloheinu Melech ha-olam, asher kid’shanu b-mitzvotav, v-tzivanu l’hadlik ner shel Hanukkah

So it’s Alice who we focus upon first: her thought process is conveyed to us visually through a video montage of her Gen Q relationships, set to a voiceover replaying last week’s convo she had with Shane about nobody being “right.” Here’s what Alice writes on her baby clipboard:

"will this show get renewed?"

HAHA JUST KIDDING here’s what Alice wrote on her clipboard:

"Will I ever find the one?"

Next we come to Shane. As she ponders her question for the universe, we’re treated to a little montage of her making out with people across all three seasons of Gen Q, accompanied by a voiceover from Tess telling Shane she’s got a fucked up way of showing her love. Let’s see what Shane’s big Q is!

"Should We Go to the Olive Garden"

Hahahaa just kidding Shane already knows the answer to that one! (Yes) Here’s what Shane was really drawing:

Shane drawing the "S"

Hahaha jk jk, this is the real one lol:

"Why do I blow shit up"

Because you’re a pyromaniac

Shane wants to know “Why do I blow shit up?” Obviously someone’s got Wax on the brain!

Next we come to Sophie, whose Thought Process Montage is absolutely unhinged, cutting from her riding the back of Finley’s bicycle from the bar to Mari saying they’re “toxic together,” followed by Finley yelling at Sophie to leave Dana’s. This is a villain edit if I ever saw one. I wonder what Sophie is wondering!

"What was wrong with my halloween costume"

fr

Just kidding this is Sophie’s question for the universe:

"Why did Dre text me a rainbow emoji"

Haha sorry sorry actually she was writing this:

Dear Diary, Finley is so hot!!! and Dre is so hot too, will we have a threesome

OOPS nope nope here’s the one, it’s this one, I found the one!! Congrats to me I solved the season.

"Is Finley right for me?"

yes

Well now that everybody’s questions are out there in the universe, it’s time to drink some drug tea! Alice requests lemon or Splenda but Mercury simply smushes her fingers into Alice’s forehead, because when life doesn’t give you lemons or Splenda, you can’t make lemonade, you just have to butch up and drink your tea.

Mercury pushing her finger into Alice's forehead

It’s time for you to STOP drinking Splenda and start letting strangers press their fingers between your eyebrows

“Cheers queers,” Shane nods before knocking hers back and then they sit waiting for their lives to change. And then the room begins to spin, and things get wobbly and the camera filter gets a little gauzy, and Mercury’s banging on her drum and Shane says, “Oh, please don’t let this turn into a musical” and then, my friends, it does!


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Riese

Riese is the 40-year-old Co-Founder and CEO 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 California. Her work has appeared in nine books including "The Bigger the Better The Tighter The Sweater: 21 Funny Women on Beauty, Body Image & Other Hazards Of Being Female," 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. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3003 articles for us.

102 Comments

  1. I didn’t watch the first five episodes of this season, but I decided to give this episode a shot because I usually really enjoy musical episodes. I wish I could say I liked this one too!

    Gripe #1: I felt like I was watching a student film edited on iMovie. Something about the audio mixing really bothered me as well, but I don’t think I have the vocabulary to articulate exactly what it was.

    Gripe #2: The songs were like… bad? If they were original pieces, I think they would have been much better off doing a jukebox musical. It would have given them a better shot at recreating the magic of the karaoke episode, assuming that’s what they were aiming for.

    Gripe #3: The writing!!!!!! What is going on with Sophie and Finley?? I thought they were finally communicating with each other well in that last scene, and now it’s just over? I don’t get it!

  2. Wtf Gen Q… wtf.

    I feel like we’re now just doing constant callbacks to when this show actually had anything compelling going on… Dana, Max, even all the throwbacks to early Bette and Tina stuff. So none of it would really make sense unless you’re very well-versed in the original series, but if you ARE then you’re painfully aware of how dumb and lazy this reboot’s take on the characters is.
    Such a weird mixture of fanservice and that Glee season 3+ kind of writing where everyone’s motivations and characters change every 5 minutes.
    Sure, OG TLW was guilty of changing characters willy-nilly, but this is just insulting. There’s not one emotional thread to hold onto, nothing that happens is grounded in any kind of recognisable reality. And the callbacks kind of ruin the original characters for me by watering them down.
    OTOH… these recaps and the pod are absolutely delightful. Riese, you’re THE L Word scholar and everybody knows it.

  3. I was waiting to read your recap Riese, as Sinley shipper, I was totally lost in this episode. And angry.

    Thank God I’m not the only one.
    WHAT WAS THAT?!!!

    They are both out of character in the first scene; it comes out of nowhere.
    And the dream sequence is complete nonsense! When Finley was like this with Soph? They always talk about their feelings and I honestly think they are themselves with each other.

    It’s a total of 360. I don’t understand.

    I always hoped they wouldn’t mess with Sinley because they could become THE couple, who made mistakes and took wrong directions, but could grow together and learn to be better.

    WTF did they do in this episode?

    Is this just a way to show Sophie with other people flirting and then maybe realize she doesn’t want that?

    I really hope they get back together 🙏🏼

    • I’m also hoping maybe this isn’t truly the end. Like Riese said in the recap (and I know Drew mentioned it on To L and Back at some point in relation to Sinley in season 2): because this show loves to break couples up so quickly (except for Tibette, I guess) sometimes it’s actually better to play the long game and assume that a break now means they have a better chance of finding their way back to each other?

      • Yeah! This is why I’m really starting to wish they hadn’t started the season together after all… bc we got genuinely like one or two cute moments, all of them swiftly ruined by someone else (eg game night) and then a breakup? I would’ve preferred for Finley to move back in to the house after sober living only to find Sophie having moved on with someone else, Finley tries to find her way through a new very different life and then eventually magnetically they return to each other. And maybe this time Sophie breaks up with her partner before striking things back up with Finley officially instead of cheating!

        I love these two characters and these two actors so much when they’re being written well

        • Wow I love this so much more than what happened! Felt similarly in season 2 – if they were going to not have Sophie pick Finley, I would’ve preferred they went on their own separate journeys and then ended up together in the end. Although maybe we’d then have seen them break up in season 3??

          Moral of the story, we need another season even though this show makes me scream at the television!

        • I kind of understand the reason Sophie wants out. Not that Finley was ever rude or condescending. But I CAN see Sophie being codependent. Dani is a workaholic and had so much drama. Finley is an alcoholic and had so much drama. My take is Sophie wants to stop dealing with her partners’ drama, which takes up so much space in the room and in the relationship, and start focusing on herself.

          • I see that take too. And I think that may be what the writers were going for?

            Because I do think in general the show has demonstrated a lot of empathy for Finley.

            Which is why the writing of this abrupt change made it feel like these characters got personality transplants for this episode— and the things Sophie said are not things we’ve seen before. If she had said what you noted Dnalorailed, that would actually have made more sense with what we have been shown/come to know about both of these characters.

            It would also have been a painful (but authentic) echo of the season 1 breakup with Rebecca where Finley begs “just tell me what to do [to fix this”] but sometimes the answer is that it can’t be fixed, it’s the overall situation, or it’s work that Sophie has to do.

  4. – When Alice said “It is you!” I thought they would bring back Tasha. And as Alice’s book chapter on Dana, I feel this dream sequence was not really about Dana but about Alice wanting to find “the one.” As someone who is *very* invested in storylines around death, loss, grief and mourning, I believe they missed a great opportunity to tell the impact of losing a person a long time ago and how profound the impact continues to be years and decades later. That this is not an issue of “letting go” but something that becomes a part of one and that one carries around with oneself, always. That a person can never, ever be replaced and the hole (or canyon) that this death creates continues to be there. I want grief education in TV if they chose to do something around death (quick shout-out to Megan Devine’s “It’s Ok that You’re Not Ok – Navigating Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn’t Understand” + “How to Carry What Can’t Be Fixed”)
    – Also, I am so tired of the TV trope that people who need care are a mere plot device who are used in order to create stress and drama for a character/ relationship and then just die when it is convenient for the plot line, so that the people the show believes are important about can go back to their regular lives, be sad for two episodes and then do something else entirely – this is not how death works. And I know death can be sudden, but from what we’ve been shown, I think that Tess’ mom could have easily lived for another 10 years. I was never a fan of bringing the topic of caring for an older family member into this series, and I hate this turn of events. If you are not prepared to deal with the realness of care dependency on TV, please don’t do it in the first place. And actually, please don’t do storylines around the need for care on this queer hookup show
    – I dearly love “Once More With Feeling” but that doesn’t mean that every TV show should just do a musical episode. This was so incredibly cringy and I was just like “Why? Why?!” I couldn’t have agreed more with Shane’s words “Please don’t let this be a musical.” You can create a look into people’s minds differently and better. So much valuable time wasted that could have been used for deepening character’s personalities… By the way I never saw any staff members who were at the studio, the other colleagues looked completely new to me. Rosanny Zayas is a great singer and rapper though! Congrats!
    – Now that Dana was part of a drug related dream sequence, can we please get Jenny back in some form? At least acknowledge her!
    – At this point, it doesn’t seem that the way Sophie is portrayed is an attempt to show her layers and flaws, but that the show/writers agree with what she is saying. I have not seen identifiable evidence of Sophie losing herself in Finley. With Dani, yes. But not with Finley. If anything, last season Sophie was more to Finley: “You are the problem and I have nothing to do with it!” – not recognizing her own role, and certainly not co-dependent. It is like the writers have a new idea, give Maribel the line about toxicity and then believe they can erase everything they have established long before. Argh! Having said that, Rosanny Zayas is a great actress and I am frustrated about how little the writers do with her character. All her story is wrapped around Finley and I would like to see Sophie as a person as opposed to limited to who she’s dating
    – Finley looked great in that suit! She was acting like garbage in Sophie’s dream/vision but how Sophie sees Finley does not ring true with what we’ve been shown so far. It would make sense to me if all of these were Sophie’s defense mechanisms rather than Finley being the problem. Also, the writers surely watched “WandaVision” when coming up with that idea
    – I don’t understand why the broke off Sinley and especially how they did it. What a bad, bad-written mess. I don’t get it and it makes no sense at all, it was a turn of 180 degrees
    – Interesting that Alice bullied her employees not only into the weekend but also into taking drugs. What if some don’t (want to) take drugs?
    – Can Shane please realize that she cannot be monogamous to save her own life and have open relationships, it would make so much more sense

    • Yeah also I was confused bc I didn’t think her Mom was dying?

      And to me the only way Sophie and Finley were toxic together was how they used to get really wasted together which; problem solved! That line from Mari felt very much like telling and not showing.

  5. Ah yes I knew I’d be able to come to this place to not only grieve the loss of Sinley, but rage about how completely nonsensical it was! I have not been able to stop screaming at the TV / angrily journaling as Tess taught me since it happened!

    1) as a codependent person myself, I’m aware one form of healing could of course be to cut off all relationships completely and become hyper independent. However! It is actually far healthier to actually work on your relationships, and learn to do things such as set boundaries and vocalize your needs, so you don’t change your codependent patterns. Especially if those relationships aren’t putting you in danger, causing you undo stress, etc.

    But fine, if they don’t want to dive into that or it’s not spicy enough for television, I’ll move on to point #2, which is that:

    2) SOPHIE HAS NOT DISPLAYED ONE IOTA OF CODEPENDENT BEHAVIOR. She has literally not had to change one singular thing about her life to accommodate Finley’s sobriety!! She hasn’t even cut back on her drinking!! Literally the only example is there unintelligible convo about the car in the beginning of this episode, and that wasn’t even really codependency as much as it seemed like just a miscommunication.

    And, as you pointed out, the whole crux of their relationship has been founded on just how much Sophie can be herself around Finley! Even if you take into account the insane escalation of Finley’s drinking last season, which I choose to ignore, Finley has in response done exactly what a recovering addict is expected to do – she went to treatment for a very long amount of time, she’s super on top of AA and maintaining her sobriety, and she has not consumed alcohol whatsoever.

    I feel like if they wanted to break them up, they could’ve done it in a much more logical way. And I feel like Sophie’s song would’ve hit a lot harder if it had actually been about her realizing something about herself, not blaming everyone on Finley who from what I can tell hasn’t done anything wrong? Like, yes, she went a little cuckoo about the Dre thing, but I felt like that was clearly out of hurt, not a desire to control Sophie or anything

    I’m so frustrated!!!!!!!!!!

    (All this being said, I genuinely loved the musical ep, it was both fun and well done, and I think even the haters seem to be changing their tune. But it’s hard to even remember that with how mad I am!!!!)

    • Also, one more thing I wanted to say is that Gigi and Dani’s split second break up somehow had more nuanced than this! And that didn’t even seem to be one that was a deliberate choice by the writers, and something that seems like it maybe had to happen bc of Sepideh moafis scheduling conflicts!

      Not to compare wounds here, because that break up hurt too, but I was just really secondhand hurting for Finley bc like I feel like ending a long term relationship where you lived together, and were best friends before that, should maybe take something of a longer conversation! Somehow this felt even crueler than how all the dani stuff went down! (I’m being only slightly hyperbolic)

  6. The more I watch this show, the more I feel like the whole thing was created as a vendetta against a golden retriever masc who wronged one of the writers.

    Because there is literally no other explanation for Finley’s arc and the way everyone in her world reacts to her pretty chill and otherwise normal behavior.

    • To me, it just didn’t feel like it came out of nowhere. 🤷🏾‍♀️

      Finley needs to grow up and stop centering herself in everything. It isn’t chill and normal behavior when she’s upset that Sophie followed a rule she set while in rehab; pulls an entire fire alarm in a bar just because she’s see the person Sophie slept with performing- that incurs a fine that grown ups have to pay. Not to mention, this “relationship,” started off with the two being trauma-bonded to begin with. It was never going to end well.

      • Totally agree. While I get that Finley is liked, she’s not this wounded puppy that never wants to hurt anyone as so many people say. Of course she doesn’t set out to hurt people, but there’s multiple examples of how her selfishness causes those around her pain, and I’d say most of all to Sophie, without any consequence or reflection on her part.

        Sophie is perhaps the character the show has invested in the least, in the sense that even they don’t seem to have a grasp on her personality, background, growth and change over the seasons… or are unable to show it on screen.

        Her lack of tact and selfishness are not new, though, and that made me buy her decision to swiftly break up. At least she admitted that this ‘not being herself in relationships’ is caused by her own interpretation of what the other person wants, not what they actually demand, since I never saw it with neither of her partners. That’s more nuance than I thought the writing would give her character, actually.

        • I totally disagree. I think the show really *wants* you to see Finley as flawed—the writers have tried SO hard to paint her in a bad light for some reason. Which we are repeatedly baffled by as viewers. But if you pluck Finley out and put her in the real world, no one would be bothered by her. Sophie however, would be annoying as f**k in the real world. She’s cheating on partners left and right. She’s hot and she’s cold. She only ever does what she wants to do, and everyone around her is just a casualty of those decisions. Hell the only reason that Finley went down the (horribly written) rabbit hole of alcoholism last season was because Sophie led her on and then selfishly cast her aside when it didn’t serve her, to go get back with Dani for a weekend. And then she’s lying or omitting info about the interaction with Dre. She’s toxically self-interested. Finley on the other hand just sorta makes normally poor decisions sometimes, but does so from a place of love and kindness which is relatable and harmless for the most part.

          That said, whether you’re on team Finley or team Sophie or neither, I think we can all agree that the events of this episode were drastically out of character for everyone involved. The writers seem more interested in advancing the plot by any means necessary than considering character development.

          • Agree on Sophie, but not buying Finley would not be 100% a toxic friend to everyone in real life. Just the wedding fiasco would mean everyone cutting ties with her, unless those people were just as disconnected from reality as she is. The disrespect she showed Dani would make her and Micah, her so-called best friend, to never speak to her again. And honestly? Same for Sophie, if she even cared a little bit about Dani as a person. How do you trust someone like that as your partner? I feel the show never bothered explaining it and viewers had to work it out themselves based on how they felt about the characters. The result is obviously a mess.

            But that’s only the wedding, she progressively got worse. A reminder that when Sophie went to Dani, she didn’t owe anything to Finley, they just were going back to having a friendly that same day. She lied, yes, but to put Finley’s relapse into Sophie is absurd. Maybe Sophie had more of a right to be confused and needing a bit of closure for her life blowing up -even if it was for the best- than Finley had a right to demand anything of Sophie.

            But the discourse is always the same, centered around Finley. The show wants to see her flaws but also be very forgiving and understanding, just like they make every other character in the show, even if it doesn’t make sense. It’s been a constant pity party for her, and if you don’t buy into it, it’s honestly tiring.

        • Agree with your point about Sophie being underinvested in, and also written very inconsistently (beyond season 1). Which is weird bc when season 1 came out, I remember articles and interviews with marja where she says sophie is the anchor and center of the show.

          • Finley did face those consequences, though. Sophie was pissed at her, Micah was cold to her, Dani was still angry with as of very recently.

            If anything, Sophie continued to put Dani’s feelings way above Finley’s. She tried to remedy things with Dani, which Dani resisted understandably, but Sophie still tried. She went all the way to Ojai to comfort Dani, when they weren’t even together and Dani had said she didn’t want to see her again. Even in the karaoke episode, where everyone was mad Sophie was discounting Dani’s feelings by singing, she had still been attempting friendship with her.

            Every time Finley’s tried to apologize, Dani has shut her down and other characters like Tess have supported her in doing so. In general, everyone treats Finley like an annoying pest, including Sophie.

            If Sophie doesn’t want to date her, that’s fine, but in agreeing to date her she should show her more understanding and compromise.

            I don’t see the show, or anyone on the show, really sympathizing with Finley more than anyone else

  7. I loved it and really didn’t think I would!
    I appreciate that the only people singing were the actors that could actually sing. I also appreciate that singing didn’t take up the entire episode coming from someone who only likes Hamilton. There may or may not have been a couple of tears between my wife and I during the Alice and Dana song. It was time for Sophie and Finley to end- Sophie felt as if she was walking on eggshells every time Finley was around and I don’t get why people can’t see the toxicity in that. Personally, I didn’t want to see one more second of them together. And that look on Tess’ face at the end, saying everything before she even needed to say it. I was so here for this episode!

    • I agree walking on eggshells around someone is toxic, but I don’t think we’ve literally ever seen Sophie have to do that? Except for the one convo at the beginning of the episode, which was pretty out of character for them both and felt like it was thrown in just to justify the break up. Finley, especially this season, usually is pretty down to talk about everything, and even when she’s been insecure about Dre or whatever she’s always owned that she knows Sophie didn’t do anything wrong

    • I totally agree!!!! I think Sophie enjoyed the newness of being with Finely. But then reality set in and they just weren’t happy. I think Sophie needs to be by herself because she has an issue being happy in relationships AND cheating. I don’t think she was codependent, but she definitely had some issues.

      • I totally replied to Em’s comments I thought, but yes thank you Kayla this exactly. I’m not typing out my whole reply again, but Sophie and Finley were trauma bonded. It was *never* going to end well. They worked better as friends.

    • Honestly I’m really glad that Sophie broke it ofd with Finley! I think Finley does take up a lot of space as a white Masc of center person in their interacial relationship and I find that to be very problematic. Also I really want the writers to explore ethical non monogamy. This is 2022 queer world so we need some better portrayals and not just toxic hetero reproducing fidelity.

  8. what in the ever loving FUCK!!

    I have whiplash from the car crash that is this show’s narrative. there are so many ACTUAL problems that Sinley could be having, why have they just plucked one out of thin air? When Sophie said ‘I need to be alone’ I was howling like GIRL YOU’VE BEEN ALONE FOR OVER A YEAR, MINUS ONE DAMN WEEKEND WITH DRE?? My heart absolutely fucking broke into pieces for Finley. Also the thing about needing help to buy the car was so codependent lesbian relatable, and I wish it was put in a storyline where it made sense. Good LORDE whaaaaat is happeningggg.

    Tess and Shane…I don’t even know what to think. Is Shane going to support Tess through her grief? Is Shane GOING TO GO TO THERAPY? Is Shane really invested in Tess or not? I don’t understand anything. This show actually reminds me of real life, in that it makes no sense and I find myself endlessly ruminating on the smallest of details tryna be like ‘well maybe she thinks this…or maybe she thinks that…’ and ‘am i reading too much into that? was this a sign?? or a coincidence??’. And you know what?! that’s not what I want from TV! I want a modicum of predictability, just like…hit some of the recognisable beats of television, please I’m begging. Watching this show is just like getting whacked over the head with sensory inputs that don’t make any sense, but which light up all the gay spheres in my brain.

    I’m tired Gen Q writers…help…blink twice if you’re alive in there and might be capable of writing a coherent episode of television sometime soon…

  9. This episode was a hot azz mezz. The ONLY saving grace was Sophie and Finely breaking up, their relationship was getting increasingly cringe-not too far off from them getting together in the 1st place. When they clocked that cheating pattern tho I said oooop, there is something to that cheating to get Dani-> cheating to get Finley pattern so I was happy Sophie was clear about needing some Sophie time. Especially after dealing with Finley wildin last season– I’m still recovering from her pissing in Dani’s hallway, then trying to corner Dani to force an apology on her -_-.

    While I do find Finley to be the most annoying character since Jenny — as Dani says ” I don’t think you’re cute”– I will say Finely acted their ass off in that flashback scene….

    Though WTF was going on in the L word period? This season is giving, we know we’re not being picked up next season so fuck it! The music was

  10. Someone had this theory that Sophie’s song “It’s all about me” is actually the showrunner speaking her mind to the fandom, expressing that she is freeing herself from the expectations of others and will now do what she wants to do. It is an interesting thought, as Marja has stated that Sophie is the character most similar to her and she is rooting for her the most.
    Sophie has been all about herself for a while now – not in every moment but I really don’t see codependency with Finley. And I like Sophie, I am saying this as a Sinley shipper and person who enjoys flawed characters and who thinks that Rosanny Zayas is an incredible talented actress; I would love listening to her rapping for hours. Not loving the scripts though and what the writers are doing with these characters. Make it make sense. Please.
    As a Micah fan, it is sad how unimportant they make his character for the story and how little screen time he gets. He is supposed to be a part of the main cast but I don’t see it in the show.

    • This is actually interesting if there’s any truth to it. Because Sophie is actually fairly insufferable as a character. So then it would make sense that someone writing from that view would see her actions as reasonable while all of us watching are like huh? It’s a totally toxic view to see Finley as the flawed character here, when all Finley did was admit to being a little hurt by Sophie sleeping with someone? Not sure that’s grounds for Sophie to make these nuts claims about being held down by partners. If anything Finley being upset is further proof of how much she cares for Sophie and how even though they were on a break, she is still hurt by the thought.

      I’m totally with Riese on this one. The maths aren’t mathing on this one.

      • Yeah I’d get the misogynistic thing is her reaction were like “you’re forbidden to see them again!!” Or exhibited other controlling behaviors but so far she’s just been, like, sad?

        • She also fully acknowledged from the beginning that she understood Sophie hadn’t done anything wrong, but that that didn’t mean it wasn’t still painful or upsetting.

          In the past Finley likely would have turned to drinking, but now she has to sit with the hurt in a different way, so I actually think it’s a sign of growth that she can articulate to Sophie her complicated feelings about the situation, even though we (and she) know Sophie didn’t do anything wrong.

          Also, season 1 Sophie was constantly despondent about how Dani wouldn’t open up to her, yet it feels like whenever Finley does, Sophie takes it like “oh this is too much I can’t do this anymore.”

          Sophie’s response actually reminds me of the way Tess responded to Shane getting vulnerable… like Shane acknowledging how she feels immediately made Tess shut down and say “I can’t do this, I need to get off this ride.” Like, what? You people do realize that relationships take a bit of work and effort, right?

  11. I’m still mad about Gigi and Dani. Now Sinley and completely destroying Sophie’s character. And Tess is annoying. Also Shane is too old for this nonsense storyline. This whole season is one big WTF.

  12. Well I am not a big fan of musicals but I thought Rosanny Zayas (especially) and Leisha Hailey were amazing in this episode with their singing and the dancing was so fun! I teared up a few times with Alice and Dana 😥

    Is Jacqueline Toboni getting hotter every episode or is it just me??

  13. Well, they want us to scream at our TVs, right? Neither the Sinley nor the Shess conclusions made sense to me, but that’s just like the original. That said, I sorta hope that Rosanny Zayas gets to rise to stardom from this. Because she’s AMAZING. And now I want to see her in something where I’m not supposed to be screaming at the TV.

    Also, thank you Riese for the consistently excellent song lyrics on the screencaps. And truly all of this. The plot made no sense, so the recap was crucial! Am ready for the podcast on Monday.

  14. Did a new writer come on board that knew nothing of Sophie and Finley’s relationship? It was like watching a Bizarro World Sinley. When the Finley ever try to silence Sophie and when did Sophie ever feel she had to edit herself for Finley? Craziness. If this crap keeps up I might have to tell Gen Q good-bye and good night.

    • I feel like no one has written sinley in a way that has been consistent since the end of season 1. There are moments that make sense, but then a LOT of moments that make absolutely no sense- even consistently within one episode. I have said this before but literally the foundation we were given about their relationship is that Sophie COULD be herself with Finley – unlike in other places of her life. It really seems like the writers of each episode do not watch any of the previous ones to have a thread of any consistent story line.

  15. Should they have made a musical episode? Well, should someone who can’t make a proper grilled cheese sandwich cater a 3 course meal for a special event? General coherence in their plot lines would be more appreciated than a gimmick like this. They really need to get back to basics with their romantic arcs.

    Mr. Piddles has now received more nods on Gen Q than Jenny Schecter, time for the manatees to riot.

  16. This episode was cringeworthy so I ffwdd through much of it just to get the gist and so I could jump on here for the recap. In total agreement that the Sinley plot is inexplicably going sideways. Also wishing they would write Shane to just stop trying to be monogomous already. Alice ending up with Tom will be… well I guess better than the rest of the ones we’ve seen?? I am shocked that I didn’t weep over Dana, but I’m just over this show I guess.

    Riese, per ususal, you had me lol-ing and kicking my feet laughing, especially the clipboard retcons. Amazing. Ugh I feel like this was a shark jump. Here for the mess I guess!

  17. Sometimes it feels like this show is gaslighting us, with the way they transform characters’ personalities, intentions, motivations.

    From season 1 I’ve adored Sophie and Finely both as separate characters, and together, and I do not understand what they are doing. Season 2 was its own scramble in that regard (“It’s like your light goes out and I’m scared of you” – ok, never seen that) to this “I twist myself to be what I think you want me to be” – when have we ever seen that?

    Except maybe that she doesn’t like what being partner of an addict/sober person means for her? I mean, we haven’t seen Finley sobriety impact Sophie barely at all. But that discomfort – that feels real.

    However since the show never acknowledged the complicity of Sophie (or their history/dynamic) in Finley’s drinking it makes sense that the writers wouldn’t go that route… But wouldn’t that be more interesting to explore? As Riese said back in the first recap, we’ve never even heard these characters talk about how Finley’s sobriety might materially impact their relationship or day to day lives (which low-key seems like they barely talk? even though Finley at the end was all “we need to have time for ourselves, apart”). I don’t know if I trust this show to delve into that kind of storyline, but it would be way more real/interested and less superficial and out of left field, particularly compared to this mythical world where all the sober characters work at a bar no problemo.

    I don’t want Sinley to end (just like I didn’t want Gigi to leave), but at least if you’re going to end the relationship, write it in a way that it feels like we are watching these actual characters. I also low-key resented the way the episode implied that Gigi was somehow the bad guy?

    I love Gen Q, but sometimes after watching this show I go rewatch an episode of Vida or League just to remind myself a better queer tv world is possible.

  18. This episode was enjoyable enough for me and that’s mostly due to the way I’ve chosen to stop caring much about thoughtful characterization or plot lines that make sense. Erin Daniels’ return was a nice treat. Rosanny Zayas is an amazing singer, and Leisha sounded great too. The costume design for the musical numbers was cute.

    With that said, I wish I didn’t have to disengage from the confusing writing choices just to have fun watching this show because both the original and Gen Q are both really important to me. I’d really love to be able to root for the couples, admire their character growth, be engrossed in the drama, etc. but instead I’m left trying to see past the things that I dislike about the direction Gen Q has taken. I will continue to watch the show no matter what and I do hope that bitter Bette/Tina stans don’t destroy the chances of Showtime giving us another season or two, but it would be really disappointing if we end up in a place where it feels like a chore to keep watching.

  19. – I don’t see Alice’s fault as pushing people away. On the contrary, she is very clingy and that is precisely what ended her relationship with Dana in the past. I find it weird that Alice holds up Dana as “THE one” when they were together for six months and it ended because Alice was so jealous. It just strikes me as odd. Yeah sure some people idealize someone and hold them up, think that with this person, it would have been perfect, instead of doing the work with the person who is actually there. Or for oneself when being single. It is easier imagining that the person who you were with for a few months 15 years ago is “THE one” instead of working on yourself and changing own behaviors that are not good for a relationship.

    – I want Finley to find people who actually see and appreciate for the caring, loyal, kind person she is instead of putting her down constantly. In contrast to almost every other character, Finley actually works on herself on-screen.

    – What Sophie addresses in her song about codependency does not make sense for her and Finley’s relationship, but what the writers are doing with Sophie’s character. Sophie as a character is very much defined on who she is with and her relationship drama. But who is Sophie as a person? I would like to see more personality that is her (her background, childhood baggage, values, thoughts, interests) and that is not rooted in fights with her respective partner. I would like to see more depth!

    – I want to see people in this show who are single and are living a good life and that not everything needs to be about relationships and affairs, and especially not about this construct of finding “THE one.”

    – Finley and Sophie live together. They were friends before they became lovers/a relationship and it feels weird that so many of these characters break off their long(er)-term-relationships left and right in a moment when they actually LIVE TOGETHER. Wouldn’t this be a somewhat longer conversation?

    • I thought the same thing about Alice and her history with Dana! I thought it was more like she had built up the potential of what could have been if Dana hadn’t died, and that’s what her problem is, rather than that her relationship with Dana was in fact perfect, which it wasn’t. That would have been more interesting a realization to explore.

  20. just want to say i love you endlessly (already but) for articulating how horrible and painful and senseless this entire sophie victimised by finley/being absurdly harsh to her storyline is! like my feelings are genuinely hurt! thank you for being you x

      • Adjacent but related: I don’t usually follow Pants but did recently listen to the Dec 14 ep, in which Kate notes that she suggested to Marja/the writers that Shane and Max would logically talk about Jenny when they ran into each other at Dana’s in ep 4. You can tell that both Leisha and especially Kate find it as bananas as we do that Jenny has been erased from Gen Q!

    • Honestly I’m really glad that Sophie broke it ofd with Finley! I think Finley does take up a lot of space as a white Masc of center person in their interacial relationship and I find that to be very problematic. Also I really want the writers to explore ethical non monogamy. This is 2022 queer world so we need some better portrayals and not just toxic hetero reproducing fidelity.

  21. this was a really sweet episode, and i love how its focus on shane, alice, AND sophie cemented sophie’s status as a central character this season !!!

    makes me realllll sad to see how many ppl have become obsessed with loudly dragging this show online for, say, no longer centering the show’s, nay series’, central couple. like, feel your feelings and all, but this is still one of the only shows with a tonnnnn of lesbian/bi/queer characters, so i don’t know what they’re trying to do here? get less gay television?

    i just wish that the loudest criticism of the reboot had to do with its lack of trans stories, its inability to center butch characters nine (9) seasons in, or its grand mistreatment of mental illness à la jenny schecter.

    of course it’s a very far from perfect show, but it would really suck to see it go down because of bettina stan twitter. idk if you can (or should) reboot a reboot, so i’m crossing my fingers that whoever makes the decision can also see the viewers who are still unironically obsessed with this silly little world that was dreamed up in the aughts!

    huge thank you for the wax callback in this week’s recap, and hugest thank you for continuing to talk about jenny!!! rooting for riese in the s4 writer’s room!

    • I really feel all this too, Ash.

      I’m starting to think that many elements this season are signs that the Gen Q team thinks this will be the final hurrah for TLW:
      – meaningful OG cameos — giving Max the character a ‘happy ending’ at last, resolving things to some degree for Alice with Dana
      – reuniting Tina and Bette and getting them back together
      – Jennifer’s announcement that she’s essentially done playing Bette
      -the first acknowledgement of holidays, 9 seasons in, with Halloween and Thanksgiving coming up (as an aside, still holding out hope for Sinley to work through things, based on the season 3 trailer clip that seems to be the friend group gathered for Thanksgiving)
      – now a musical episode ?!
      – not to mention this theme of “finding the One” feels very end of the series to me

      I hope I’m wrong, and if I’m not, I hope at least they do a two-hour finale special, following the 10th episode of season 3, released like 6 months later: a Christmas episode written by Riese Bernard!

    • Haven’t seen this ep yet but I know I’ll cry with the Alice + Dana scenes! It’s been +15 years and Alice’s still longing for her. Gosh, I cannot bear the idea of my husband dying.

  22. I loved LOVED the musical portion of this. If I could watch The L Word exclusively as a musical, that would be so much fun. I cried like a baby over Alice & Dana. It was freakin’ beautiful, touching, amazing, heart-breaking, and so beautifully sung and musically written!! I want their song added to Spotify.

    Even if some of the plot lines don’t make sense, it’s not enough to stop me from watching. I never took the original that seriously back then, so it’s not unusual that its a bit ridiculous. It’s a fluffy soapy show and I’m grateful that it exists! Flaws and all.

    Finley & Tess looked especially goooorgeous in this episode. I’m hoping for Shess to work it out!

  23. So basically I sat myself all ready to relax with “the fun musical episode” and cried not once, not twice, but thrice (not sure this third option exists but forgive me, I’m Italian). I wasn’t ready for La La L word to be this emotional but am so deeply pleased with it, both because I never manage to cry while watching something (or in life for that matter) and when that happens it’s a relief, and because it seemed a reward to me for sticking to this show up to season three, despite finding season two terrible (but it made me discover your recaps, that in turn are what got me to more-and-more-pleasing season three, so it’s all working smoothly). But the very question is: is it possibile to experience a mini trip by remote just through empathy? Because that is exactly how I felt while and after watching this wonderful lysergic episode. Merry Christmas everybody, and thank you Reese for your perfect recaps.

  24. Sadly, I’ve also gotten to the point of watching this show solely to listen to L and Back, and to read the recaps. I’m down for Sinley long game, but it doesn’t even make sense anymore.

    I did cried at Dana. I miss her and Alice’s love and friendship.

    And wow, I miss Dani in this episode!

  25. As soon as I saw the close up shots of their notepads with their questions, I knew we’d be getting some different questions written for them in the recap and they would be glorious. And I was not wrong!

    I was a Sinley shipper in the beginning. I thought they were cute and fun. But once they got together, I just haven’t felt the same spark or energy so I was okay that they were heading towards splitsville. However, the way the writers wrote it is bonkers and completely out of left field. They have not shown Sophie “loosing herself” with Finley or her twisting herself for Finley’s sake. The only twisting she may have done is with the truth about her hookup with Dre but I wouldn’t call that as something that Sophie changed herself for Finley’s sake.

    I feel bad for Finley because saying “I don’t feel like myself around you” is a really hurtful way to say, it’s not me, it’s you that is the problem. Finley may think that it was her sobriety that caused the change in the relationship and that’s a terrible message to send a recovering alcoholic. Sorry, I liked it better when you were a messy drunk who didn’t have their life together. Now you’re just a downer who I can’t be myself around.

    And Sophie’s character gets dragged in this story too because she comes off selfish. If she doesn’t feel like herself or feels overwhelmed by Finley’s sobriety and/or feelings about Dre, then talk it out and make an effort to change that within the relationship and if it’s still not working then yes, take a break or break things off. Don’t just come home, hug your gf and be like, nope, we’re donezo. Hope you have a good life with your new car from Carmax!

    I think the writers must have gotten Shess issues confused with Sinley because with the way Tess was pushing that second bar and bringing a lot of different responsibilities into Shane’s life, it would be a reach, but I could maybe see how Shane might feel like Sophie.

    It was so sweet to see Dana again. I’m like Alice, I’ll never get over her.

    Although, when Alice was looking at the box, I knew she was going to call Tom, but with her wistfully looking at the sad singing flower, I was secretly hoping she’d call Tonya… just for the pure chaos she’d bring!

    My first thought when Alice thought of Tom was… Is Donald Faison’s availability going to allow him to be “the one”??

    I wish they could have figured out a way to fit in more Rosanny Zayas singing in cause I could’ve watched a whole episode of that!

  26. I too was really taken aback at the breakup, not because it happened but because the showrunnersclearly had a strong take on who was to blame, which is apparently Finley. Look, Finley is not my fave and there are plenty of faults there but we were just making up things at this point. It especially sucked as someone who has gotten sober and worked to address some of my own expectations and needs surrounding those types of relationships. So much of the ways Sophie sacrifices herself for others is her own baggage, but something about the delivery in the breakup scene- it felt like Sophie was triumphantly freeing herself from an emotionally abusive partner, but that’s not really what we saw? It almost felt kinda like attacking Finley in a way that felt gross to me? I don’t know, I didn’t love it though.

    Also, really nervous about the Tess/Shane stuff cuz Shane’s fuckboi/girl/enby is tired but also Tess has some stuff to answer for too but I’m not sure they’ll engage with that, instead going with the emotionally flat “Shane must play the dutiful grieving partner to prove she’s mature now” route

    • Yes, I agree, that was super messed up that it was a work retreat and Sophie said that Alice “basically bullied everyone into attending.” Couldn’t the three of them (Alice, Shane, and Sophie) just have been hanging out, or at least Alice just got Shane to do it because she thought it would be good for them and then asked Sophie to come along for some reason? It seemed like the coworkers were needed as dance extras but it’s a musical… people could just appear in their visions for no reason…

  27. Unlike Alice’s and Sophie’s questions, “Why do I blow sh*t up?” is not answered by “recommit to Tess”. Shane and Tess seem bonded by business, but I can’t see any reason for them to be together. I get that we want (NEED, chile) to see Shane either (1) evolve or (2) double down that she wants a life with multiple partners as often as possible, but this ain’t it.

    Finley is obnoxious to me. I’m curious about who single Sophie is.

    And why did we stop exploring Micah’s character once he connected with Maribel? Now they treat both characters like finishing salt.

  28. I mostly had fun with this episode. Cackled the whole way through. I have never been a Sinley shipper and never will be mainly because Finley is an adult baby and I can’t stand that. Also, those two literally got together because Sophie cheated on her girlfriend so of course there was bound to be issues with them eventually. This episode is the most I have ever enjoyed Sophie though and I think its because Rosanny is just so damn good in this. I would be fine with a new love interest for her.

    I desperately need Shane to grow up or be in a poly relationship cause girl you are like 50 now. Let’s have some growth.

    Listen, I love Alice. I do. Always have. But I have ZERO interest in watching an Alice/Tom endgame. I want so much better for her than that. Bring back Tasha or Helena or any damn body. Hell, have her date Sophie. But please for the love of Christmas don’t make me sit through Tom 2.0.

    Also, who writes this show cause I have notes. A LOT OF NOTES.

  29. Shane doesn’t need to be nonmonogamous, Shane needs to be single & working on her shit, ideally in therapy. Probably I’m being sensi because I’m nonmonogamous, but it feels like a fundamental misunderstanding of how nonmonogamy & polyamory works to suggest that relationship style for someone who is totally mystified by their own feelings/actions/motivations and can seemingly barely hold a conversation about their feelings, much less think about multiple partners feelings. If this was OG L Word I could maaaaybe see that being a possible thing for Shane but it really doesn’t gel with the Shane that Gen Q keeps giving us (I know they told us she and Quiara were nonmonogamous but that’s hardly what they showed us).

  30. I started out watching with one eye half closed because I expected attempting a musical to be cringy, but I ended up wishing they could have Rosanny Zayas sing in every episode. So much didn’t make sense about Sophie’s frustration and her breaking up with Finley; yet I’m happy they broke up because although I like both actors and even mostly both characters, I absolutely HATED them together.

    The Dana parts were great, I’m a buyer of anything that brings Erin Daniels back.

    But this show continues to frustrate me because I foolishly had such high hopes for Season 3 being the time when they finally got it right. Instead we got to see exactly zero of Dani and Gigi being happy and are supposed to believe they broke up after more than a year together at the drop of a hat or misplaced EMT nudge. Also, of course, the answer *is* always Gigi. They ruined what everyone wanted to see with Dani and now they don’t seem to know what to do with her.

    I liked Micah and Maribel in S2, but couldn’t care less about their S3 selves. They made Jamie Clayton a series regular in S3 after two seasons of charm and nuance and now she is a whiny, bitchy mess. Don’t even get me started on Angie and her “boyfriend”. I don’t care much about how Bette and Tina end up, but TLW without any Bette seems like a different show. If that’s what the showrunner wanted, maybe just get a new show about lesbians in Los Angeles.

    It’s always been easy to be hard on this show, but it is a show mostly trying to depict queer life so I grade on a very slanted curve. It’s just sad because this season could have been really good.

  31. I LOVE this episode. [Was looking forward to your recap; largely ingnored/ignoring the comments on Showtime and elsewhere, so…]
    It’s camp, its BITTERSWEET in the truest sense for me; it’s TLWGQ. Am with you there: except for the Finley-Sophie shocker and possible Alice+Tom pairing moving forward—I love it.

    Not only Shane’s attitude here but her hair never looked so good, too, I’d actually want to have mine done by her minus the hair wax. (BTW, her hair was a bob in the opening scene and longer, shaggier at the retreat. Reminds of the Pants podcast when Leisha referred to her (Leisha’s) hair v/v continuity. Maube not on this ep? Or maybe Shane’s dark hair is so iconic that it stands out more). That aside:

    On Alice’s “note:” I ask the Universe for the same—Renew, Showtime/Paramount!

    Expected Shane to actually dance and move with the group and smile *more* because it’s a dream sequence after all. Anyway.

    The DANFiSoMiMar opening B/W sequences are hilarious; Rosanny looks great and GQ has at least allowed her to sing (sounds great, too) as it also has allowed Leo some fun and comedy; Jillian looks great as well (her deadpan comedic lines have always been on point imo). And I agree: the wardrobe on Dani/Adrienne makes her look super fine!

    The ultimate surprise (again because I don’t intentionally watch extended trailers, listen to spoiler podcasts or have patience with speculative gossip) is the Name That Flaw revue and Dana and Alice singing. Thank you, GQ for having these 2 ladies sing! Overall, Alice’s seq. was both happy, AND sad. Very sad. About a 1-ep reunion with Dana and maybe cameos of OGs/OG guests, and the nostalgia it brings. About and for Alice (and/with Dana) in this sequence.

    So, I’m mostly forgiving of GenQ but this was a good watch on an L/queer Christmas weekend (I have to say that I find similar sequences of The Book of Queer more [camp-]hilarious though). Still, it’s thus far the show we’ve got out there.

    That said, SHOWTIME/Paramount (and Leisha and Kate—and Jennifer, if your schedule allows it; Ilene: stay on as EPs): you do owe the universal L/rainbow community a Renewal (and listen to the great suggestion of naming Bar#2 Lez Girls!) LOL

  32. I say this with love, but this season is unacceptable.

    The A League of Their Own series has double the cast members than Gen Q and 2 less episodes/hours in its season. Yet ALoTO delivered infinitely richer stories and covered numerous LGBTQ issues.

    I’m not asking for GQ to match ALoTO’s storytelling-quality or for it to become a different kind of show.

    All I want are these characters, especially the OGs (including Max, Dana – Angie’s an OG, too!!), to be honored with stories that make basic sense an feel somewhat unique to TLW universe.

    Tell simple stories with this beautiful cast. The casting director deserves a round of applause, btw.

    Would be heartbroken if GQ is not renewed and given one more chance to show these characters have compelling stories in them. I’m sorry to say it, but the current writers and editors need to go.

    #RIESE4SHOWRUNNER

  33. Loved the recap as usual, Riese! The Hamilton captions were excellent.

    I actually quite enjoyed this episode besides the Sinley storyline. It definitely didn’t match with what their relationship dynamic has been so far.

    I got all the feels from seeing Alice and Dana. And I am so excited about Tom coming back!

  34. I appreciate Riese’s effort that went into the creation of all the questions graphics!!
    (It annoyed me in the episode though that they said these were “intentions” and then they all wrote down questions!)

    Looking back, I can sort of see that they may have been trying to build this dynamic for Sophie throughout the season, but it felt so much more like it was about cheating/not cheating than any realization on Sophie’s part that she actually wants to be on her own. I wish they could have done something like: while Finley was away, Sophie realized she enjoyed being on her own, but then when Finley was returning she felt obligated to support her—that would have been more interesting. I did think the song did what this sort of musical number is supposed to do, reveal innermost feelings the character has until now been unable to articulate—it just would have been nice if it was actually a payoff of some build-up!

    I did genuinely LOVE Sophie’s song, both her performance and the song itself, and enjoyed the musical-ness of the episode overall even though the other songs were less objectively good. I was stoked they did original music (even though I am one of the nine people who loves the Grey’s Anatomy musical episode) and thought the wacky settings were super fun!

  35. Riese
    The article you linked about the death and loss of your father is a profoundly brilliant piece. “We sat in silence in a living room that once contained so much light in a house in the country where everything was so quiet you could hear your own heart break at night, and we did.” That line, dang, that line is just ineffable.
    And your reaction, when the then friend said you didn’t even have time to get used to him being around, how that would be so much easier than when she lost her 80-year-old mother, “I never spoke to her again.” Perfectly sane.

    What a powerful gift you have!

  36. I will always welcome a Dana Fairbanks moment, and Alice’s whole third of the ep mostly worked for me, but I wish this show’s memory was half as thorough as Riese’s, because that game show segment could’ve featured Tasha, Phyllis, and even Bette (and Gigi!) Plus whomever Alice was with in the whole 6-8 years between allegedly not throupling with Tasha and Jamie and meeting Nat. Or at least Alice would be pressed to acknowledge that monogamy/nonmonogamy is what ended her and Nat very abruptly for plot reasons.

    Also, I’m pro-Tom and love goofy but grounded person for Alice, but is he Alice’s soulmate? Idk, but I think Alice should use her wealth and influence to put on a messy game show called The Aloce Ex Factor and bring back all her old flames to compete for the chance to date her again. Wildcard round can be people who know her well and wished they could’ve dated her so I can finally see Helena Peabody revived.

    Shane and Tess continue to inject a real world element into the show that is less fun for me than if they could break up and then not exclusively have joyless foursomes. I think for every 3 joyful foursomes, I will except 1 where our main is having a middling time.

    I don’t wanna do a grief scene in each episode, I do not wanna watch couple’s counseling scenes, I do not want to have to witness therapy Shane in 3 minute chunks of time in one episode that could be dedicated to hot queer people banging age-appropriate partners, thanks.

    Dani looked very very hot though, and honestly? That’ll do.

  37. I’m super late reading this but…
    I cried when Dana showed up. This show erases so many of the original show’s story lines, can we pretend Dana never died so we can have Erin Daniels back? She could come back and be with Lara for all I care, I just want her back.
    More scenes with Dani in a suit and more scenes showing off Shane’s abs please.
    The musical stuff wasn’t as bad as I thought it might be but it just felt like an excuse to take some characters down a path that no one wants to see them go. I still don’t know why I keep watching this show. Yes, it is nice to have queer rep on tv but it really is ok to want that queer rep to be done well and not just be happy with whatever they throw our way.

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