“To L and Back” L Word Podcast Episode 402: Livin’ La Vida Loca with El Sanchez!!

Because we’re gonna be recording remotely for a while, we figured to turn this drawback into an opportunity and invite guests from other locations! Comedian El Sanchez joins us from their social isolation in Olympia for this spirited episode in which we meet the legendary Papi from Our Chart, who doesn’t do breakfast and loves girls’ sadness and wetness. Also, Arizona Robbins short-shorts her way into Bette’s T.A. spot, Cybil Shepard arrives as Dean Phyllis Kroll who thinks she’s gay, Shay drinks 500 milkshakes, Max the sensitive feminist goes on a date, and Jenny finds out that Stacey Merkin is a duplicitous cunt!!!!

Alice in a silver sparkly dress and gold hoop earrings, standing with her hands on the breasts of a drag queen. "See how much this means to me."

Max, wearing an opened blue button-up, saying, "You know, I could do a computer search if you want."

Bette and Phyllis, both wearing dark sunglasses, are walking into a building from outside. Phyllis says, "You're the most glamorous dean."

Tina looks pissed. She says, "She's a freak for Satyajit Ray."

Helena sits in a yellow chair, looking disappointed after getting fired. Tina, who is off screen, says "Zombies on a Train."

A group of 5 soon-to-be TA's for Bette's class sit in desks and watch her speak. Bette, who is off screen, says, "You shouldn't expect to have a life."

A yellow legal pad with "Dean Porter is HOT!!" written in a purple marker. Of screen, Bette says, "In addition to your already insane course load."

Alice's node on Our Chart, showing that she has hooked up with 23 people. A message from Papi pops up, which reads: "Message from Papi: Jorge's Shoe Shine & Billiard Parlor. Tonite 10 PM. I'll B there. Will u?"

Alice at The Planet wearing blue eye shadow. She says sarcastically, "Ooh, scary..."

Shay stands shyly wearing a green and white plaid shirt. He introduces himself, saying, "Shay."

Bette stands in the doorway of her office. She says to one of her TAs (who is off screen), "I love Greece."

Bette and a TA with long blonde hair stand in Bette's office doorway.

Alice and Shane are at The Planet. Shane has asked Alice how she can make it up to Carmen. Alice responds, "You got $40 million stashed away in a sock?"

Bette's TA (with long blonde hair and dangly gold earrings) looks at Bette (whose back is to the camera). Her TA asks Bette if she is an athlete, saying, "Because you have very beautiful arms."

Max and his boss are driving a remote control boat in a pool. Max says, "The Mercury E.F.I. Super ventilated, right?"

Max's boss and his daughter. The dad says, "Brooke's a vegetarian."

Shane, Shay, and Alice are at The Planet. Shay says, "I think I'm going to throw up."

A dimly lit bar with a pool table in the background and two guys sitting at a table. Subtitles read, "[Patrons converse quietly in Spanish.]"

Alice is wearing a gold sparkly top and leans over to a patron at the bra. She asks, "Papi?"

Papi is driving a car and looks into the backseat. She says, "I ain't got no plan, baby."

A journalist in a blazer chats with Jenny on a couch at her reading. Subtitles say, "[Laughs politely.]"

Jenny, wearing a white blouse, says, "I just want to be Jenny" to a reporter at her book reading.

The reporter at Jenny's book reading says, "Cunt-enthusiast, half bujew--"

A crowd of unknown people at a bar. One of them shouts, "Hey, everyone, Papi's in the house!"

Papi, wearing a chunky gold necklace, says, "Here, let me help you to say my name right."

Alice, wearing a gold sparkly top and holding an audio recorder. She talks into it, saying, "Um, web-famous Papi, um..."

Close-up of Papi's face. She says, "The wetness."

Papi and Alice sit in the backseat of a car. Alice says, "What, does that make the bed pop out?"

Close-up shot of Alice as Papi goes down on her. Alice says, "Circles are great, Papi."

Alice and Papi hang upside down off the side of a bed, naked. Alice says, "How do you say, 'I'm done' in Spanish?"

A person walks a dog as they cross the street. Subtitles say, "[Moaning]"

Papi opens the car door for Alice as she gets out of the car. Papi says, "Papi doesn't do breakfast."

Alice is climbing steps to her apartment, turns and looks behind her. She is holding the newspaper. She says, "Really, Papi?"

Jenny is wearing a black top and looking at her computer. She says, "Hey, is it CurveMag.com or .net?"

A hand messily pours milk from a jug into a blue cereal bowl. Jenny yells off camera, "Fuck you, Stacy Merkin!"

Shane in a short-sleeve red plaid shirt puts her hand over Jenny's mouth in the kitchen. Shane yells, "Hey!"

Jenny looks at Shay in the kitchen. Jenny says, "Because Stacey Merkin's a fucking cunt."

Nadia smiles and looks at Bette. Bette says, "No, little Nemo is a student."

Shane wears a leather jacket and has a "what the fuck" look on her face. She says, "Is it so hard to get the kid a fucking smoothie?"

Phyllis is wearing a white silk blouse and a long strand of pearls. She says, "I think I'm a lesbian, Bette."

Jenny is sitting back in a chair with her arms in the air. She says, "In your little magazine called Curve?"

Shay sits on the counter at the skate shop, wearing a grey hoodie. He's looking at the haircare products on display.

Shane at Wax. She says to Marta, an employee in a red Wax t-shirt, "What, is life so fucking hard for you?"

Bette, Alice, Jenny, and Max look into the window of Shane's car to talk to her. Bette says, "And then we'll head over to the Beverly Center, okay?"

A skater due in a black hoodie and hat, standing behind a fence near a skateboard ramp. Max, off camera, asks him, "Hey, have you seen a kid around here?"

Shay is hitch-hiking and riding in a semi-truck. The driver, off screen, says to him, "So you know what happens to 10-year-old boys when they run away, don't you?"

Alice and Bette sit on a bench near a basketball court. Alice is talking to Shane on the phone. Alice says, "Yeah, get him a big burger." Dark shot of Helena and Papi outside at night, they have just hooked up. Subtitles read, "[sighs breathlessly.]"

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Riese is the 41-year-old Co-Founder of Autostraddle.com as well as an award-winning writer, video-maker, LGBTQ+ Marketing consultant and aspiring cyber-performance artist who grew up in Michigan, lost her mind in New York and now lives in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in nine books, magazines including Marie Claire and Curve, and all over the web including Nylon, Queerty, Nerve, Bitch, Emily Books and Jezebel. She had a very popular personal blog once upon a time, and then she recapped The L Word, and then she had the idea to make this place, and now here we all are! In 2016, she was nominated for a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Digital Journalism. She's Jewish and has a cute dog named Carol. Follow her on twitter and instagram.

Riese has written 3213 articles for us.


  1. Thanks for another great episode, I literally did not remember any of this hour of TV, so I finally get that thing people say how not remembering the pain of giving birth helps you give birth again, only it’s me watching another episode of The L Word in my quarantine rewatch.

  2. The kid who played Shay always had this expression on his face like he knew that this show was utterly bonkers and he had no clue why he was on it.

    • apparently that was more or less the end of his career — one more job in 2010 and then got right out of canadawood

  3. This is my least favorite season, but this is by far my favorite recap. Jesus it was hilarious.

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