You know that Shane, never the bride, always f*cking the bridesmaids! This week on The L Word everything gets very fun, very fast. We’ve got imaginary sex matchups between Bette and Helena! We’ve got Jenny’s garbage bag dress! We’ve got drunk misanthropic Tina! We meet Adele, who has read Some of Her Parts ten thousand times! Also, Tom has a little crush on Max, Tina is obsessed with Bette, and Tasha and Alice have a middling double date and is Jodi’s place too funky for Bette? Only one way to find out!!
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- The original recap of Episode 502
Riese: Hi, I’m Riese.
Carly: And I’m Carly.
Riese: And this is-
Carly and Riese: To L And Back.
Carly: Hi, Riese.
Riese: I’m so excited!!!!!
Carly: Well, we have arrived. We have arrived to the exciting part of the show known as Season 5. This episode wastes no time getting us into some real, weird, campy, wacky shit. The season’s just wacky.
Riese: Yeah. So tell me more about this episode, Carly?
Carly: Well, you know what? I’d love to Riese. This is Episode 502. Look out. Here they come, exclamation point. It was written by Cherin Dabis and directed by Jamie Babbit.
Riese: This is a power team out there.
Carly: It is. It really is.
Riese: It really is.
Carly: It absolutely truly is. Jamie Babbit is such an incredible comedy director that all of the comedy bits in this episode just sing under her watchful directorialness. I’m not doing great. This originally aired January 13th, 2008.
Riese: Which, again, means that Carly and I watched it together the first time.
Carly: Should we get into it?
Riese: Yeah, let’s get into it.
Riese: Okay. We open with this — I remember watching this.
Carly: Yes, I do too.
Riese: Because I got the screeners ahead of time. And so after I watched one for one week, I would watch just a little bit of the next week’s episode before the group viewing. And I remember-
Carly: That’s incredible that you had the amount of control and self control to not watch past a few minutes. How did you do that?
Riese: Because I’m always looking out for Future Me and assuming that Future Me is going to be really sad. And so I’m always trying to do Future Me favors, like save things for future me to have so that I-
Carly: Oh, my God. That’s great. You’re so nice to your future self. I’m trying to sabotage future me. I can’t tell you how many times I do something and I’m thinking, “Well, that’s a problem for future me.” It’s something I think regularly. So I got to get better at that.
Riese: Yeah. I mean, and also because I knew I would have to watch it. Usually I had to watch it four times in all to recap. So I was like, “Do I really want to waste one of them right now?” So I did watch the first few minutes of this one. And I remember I screamed. I don’t know if I emailed you.
Carly: I remember you definitely emailed us — I don’t think I told what moment it was though. I don’t think you told us what it was. But I do remember something like an email or something from you being like, “Holy shit, next week, you guys.” And we were like, “What?” So it really opens off poorly, but it goes great after that. It starts poorly and then it escalates to awesomeness. It starts with evil Aaron, Tina’s terrible boss, screaming about lesbian sex, which is not something I need to… I don’t need to hear him screaming about anything, especially that.
Riese: Yeah. It’s almost meta though because the viewers wanted more sex on The L Word, and also because that’s what men always want from lesbians, is for them to just have sex. So it’s a commentary on men and it’s also a meta-reference to the fans. It works on more than one level!
Carly: It’s incredible. It really is.
Riese: It’s incredible. The magic of television.
Carly: It’s very special. So he’s going through the script and he’s just inserting sex scenes everywhere. Anytime there are characters that are in a scene together, he’s like, “Why haven’t they fucked in this scene?” And Tina and Jenny are like, “No, that doesn’t make sense.” But Tina and Jenny are both also not just approaching it from like, “Well, the script and the characters.” But they’re also very much approaching it from like, “We clearly know who this is based on, and Shane would never fuck Bev.”
Riese: We’ll start with Bev and the makeup artist. And by the way, Jennifer Beal’s outfit through this whole fantasy sequence is a blazer and a bra, right?
Carly: It’s perfect.
Riese: I mean, Bette Porter’s as worn some things. At first when Bev and the makeup artist were hooking up, I was like, “It’s a top off.” And then I was like, “Shane lost immediately.”
Carly: Because Shane…
Riese: It was no contest.
Carly: Is Shane not a true top?
Riese: I actually think Shane tops from the bottom a lot.
Carly: Yeah. I think that is accurate.
Riese: But also we know that Jodi always was the top-off with Bette. So at the end of the day, you guys, people are switches.
Carly: That’s really what we can take away from this programmers.
Riese: Most people are switches.
Riese: The next is my favorite one because then he suggests Nina and Shawn. And the fantasy sex scene between them is going great. They are enjoying themselves. And then Jenny’s like-
Jenny: Nobody ever wants to see Nina having sex. No one will ever go to the film!
Carly: Oh, my God. And then this is where we learn that Jenny renamed Helena as “Helen.”
Carly: Wow. The lack of imagination this has. The lack of a name book this has.
Riese: Yeah, Helen, come on.
Carly: Helen! you subtracted one letter.
Riese: Also the other thing is that Helena wasn’t in Season 1, but it’s fine.
Carly: That’s a very good point. So then we’re instantly thrown into a top off as-
Riese: Yes. And this is the ultimate match, I think of The L Word characters for sure.
Carly: 100%. It’s the two alpha tops battling it out. And who wins? No one.
Riese: Neither of them.
Carly: Nobody wins.
Riese: They try to have sex for a second, and then they’re just wrestling really hard. Also it’s really funny when they’re half naked, but still have their pants on. Because the style of pants then was those enormous pants.
Carly: They’re like wild legged, flowy dress pants, and they’re wearing stilettos. I also noticed that Jennifer Beals was wearing Louboutins but Rachel Shelley was not.
Riese: Also the look on Helena’s face when she enters the fantasy scene is like — she’s licking her lips. She’s like ready to seduce-
Carly: It’s so over the top.
Riese: It’s incredible.
Carly: It’s amazing.
Riese: I could have watched a whole episode of just this. I mean, obviously we all wanted to.
Carly: 100%. Also I love that like this as well as the moment from the previous episode, all take place in what I assume is Janet’s void from The Good Place because it’s just a open white space. And anything can happen. So I really feel like this is also a Good Place crossover, which is great.
Riese: Yes. Yeah. I love crossovers. Tina is serious that she — and she’s correct — that Nina would never cheat on Bev, and that it doesn’t make sense for Bev to cheat on her with more than one person or whatever. But none of this ever comes up again. So it doesn’t really matter.
Carly: True. It doesn’t matter at all.
Riese: So anyway, already, I love this episode.
Carly: Great episode already. This is wonderful. This is so much fun. Okay — Go to our theme song.
Riese: And indeed we do have new shots this season. Number one, Jodi in the art studio is now Jodi and Bette back to back in a hotel room. Number two, a closeup of Helena has been moved to a closeup of Max. Number three, a closeup of Max, has been pushed to a closeup of Tina. And the close-ups of Tina where she’s by herself are all from, I think, Season 2. You can tell that this is when Laurel was pregnant, and she has this big white coat on and this cross necklace.
Carly: Oh, yeah. That’s right.
Riese: You know what I’m talking about?
Riese: It’s so random. Angus with the guitar is replaced with a Jodi closeup. Thank the Lord.
Carly: What if Angus with the guitar had been replaced with just a guitar.
Riese: Kind of playing but on its own, like — You know what I mean?
Carly: Yeah. Floating in the frame as if he was there, but maybe he put on a green screen suit and they just painted him out.
Riese: Yeah. That’s totally normal. I mean, however they did this was bananas. I would love to talk to whoever the animator, whoever was the-
Carly: That’s who we need to get. We need to really obscure people related to the show to be guests, on future episodes. The person who shot the opening or had to add the opening or something.
Riese: Yeah. I want to know all about that.
Carly: I just want to know what happened. That’s great.
Riese: Next. Pregnant Tina has been switched to modern day Tina in a brown sleeveless dress next to Bette who’s still in this gown she’s been wearing for a few seasons. And then in the final walk, Papi has gone obviously. But, one thing that I noticed specifically about that is that Tina was kind of hidden last season. She was behind Papi and Tasha and now she’s level with Tasha. I think that they put her behind because she was dating a man. And so they didn’t think of her seeing as much of a part of the story.
Carly: Oh my God.
Riese: Because she wasn’t! Like she was cut out of most of the story that last year.
Carly: Yeah. But if that’s true, then Max should have been hiding in the back because he never has scenes with anybody at least before this season.
Riese: Before this episode.
Carly: Yeah. Suddenly Max is part of the gang.
Riese: Papi and Shane back to back is Shane and Alice back to back. Kit and Angus has been switched to Shane sitting on a couch. Tasha and Papi turning is obviously Tasha already facing us. And then the last things are the same, except no Papi. That’s all.
Carly: Riese, great analysis. I’m so happy you took the time to do that. I think that was really important.
Riese: Then we go to a mansion.
Carly: Ooh. It’s a huge mansion. Oh, it’s just gigantic.
Riese: It’s a palace. It’s a palatial estate.
Carly: It is.
Riese: And Shane has a job.
Carly: Good for Shane. I’m glad that after Shane’s shop burned down, that in the next day or two Shane got a job already. Good for her.
Riese: Yeah. I mean, she’s got connections. These are Jenny’s connections that she’s connected to.
Carly: Jenny’s a big Hollywood player now.
Riese: Jenny’s a big Hollywood player now. Shane has two enormous bags of stuff with her.
Carly: That makes sense. If you’re doing-
Riese: For hairstyling, it’s just like bags of scissors?
Carly: Well, no, it’s all different hair products and accessories and blow dryers. And what if you need to give someone a… There’s a lot of stuff. Yeah. Hairstylists even have a good size kit, and she was doing hair for more than one person.
Riese: So there wasn’t like a small animal in one of them?
Carly: I can’t say that there isn’t.
Riese: Okay. I’m just checking.
Carly: I’m not the one who packed or unpacked the bags. So I couldn’t tell if there was maybe a small cat or a dog.
Riese: If you were going on a plane, you would not be able to certify that those bags had not been out of your sight—
Carly: No, but despite the airfare being very affordable right now, I will not be getting on a plane.
Riese: So, Shane is very thirsty on this day.
Carly: On this blessed day of a blessed union between the daughter of the financier of Jenny’s movie to a man named Brent or something. Brent, Bart. I don’t know. This auspicious occasion. It’s Wallace Shawn’s daughter’s wedding.
Riese: It is.
Carly: Oh, my God. Okay. Sorry. This was so off topic but, do you remember last week when I was like, “Wait, I thought Jenny met him last season, and they were talking.” And they were in fact not. And you were like, “No, we have never met him before.” That is because I saw a very similar scene on a show recently where Wallace Shawn played a very rich person who met a young girl and was like, “I’m going to like get you money.” And it was on Season Three of Search Party.
Carly: It was super weird. I was like, “I’ve just put Jenny in the scene in my head. I feel like I remember a scene of Jenny meeting him at a party and him being like, “I’m an eccentric billionaire or something.”
Riese: I feel my ability to remember which TV shows something happened has completely dissolved over the last several months — like moreso than before.
Carly: Yeah, me too.
Riese: I’m forgetting entire shows that I actually watched all of.
Carly: Yeah, me too. Oh, completely. Yeah.
Riese: It’s so bizarre.
Riese: Anyway, so we’re inside the castle basically. There’s chandeliers. This is like Beauty and the Beauty. Fancy-
Carly: Yeah. The spoons and the knives are going to do a song.
Riese: Yeah. There’s dancing spoons. There’s candlesticks. And Shane is checking out the hot mom who’s married to Wallace Shawn. And she’s like, “You got a really nice place” while leering at her.
Carly: Yeah. Remember that. That’ll come into play later.
Riese: Yeah. That’ll come back in. Shane is just licking her lips through this whole episode.
Carly: Shane is a cartoon horny dog or something just straight out of Roadrunner or Wiley Coyote or some shit.
Riese: So she goes upstairs and she meets the bride and the bridesmaids. And one thing she doesn’t notice at first, but I noticed, Carly, is that the bride played Young Bette in a prior season. So that’s awkward, right? It’s a little awkward.
Carly: Whoops, little awk.
Riese: Ooh, I guess she really clicked with the cast and they want to bring her back.
Carly: There’s a part of her facial structure that reminds me of Dana.
Riese: Yeah. Put a pin on that.
Carly: And we will also get to that later as well, yes. Yes.
Riese: And all of these girls basically immediately are also thirsty for Shane.
Carly: Very much so. Like instantaneously.
Carly: All right.
Riese: All right.
Carly: Okay. Go with it. We’re going to with it. So we go to The Planet where Kit and Max are best friends.
Riese: I know. Actually I love their friendship.
Carly: I do too. Them two together in this episode is lovely. And I really want more of that for both of them. Kit and Max are watching Tina who, I guess, is on a date with a woman. And she talks in the entire time about Bette.
Riese: Also the woman looks like she’s in a music video from the ’80’s where were like “Women in Suits”
Carly: Oh, totally. Like Addicted to Love or something—
Riese: You know what I’m talking about? Yeah.
Carly: Part of her face remind of Anna Paquin—
Riese: Just part of her face?
Carly: Yeah like some part of her face—
Riese: Yeah. Oh, yeah, you’re right.
Carly: I was like, “Is she related to her?” She’s not. Anyway, Tina says a billion things about Bette and she’s talking about Angelica. And then the woman is like, “She sounds neurotic,” about Bette. Which is like, “Wow, she figured that out and she’s not even met her yet.” Incredible.
Riese: But Tina was like, “No, she’s the best woman in the world.”
Carly: Everyone is like, “She’s the gold standard by which I will judge anyone I ever meet for the rest of my life. I just wish you would pay more attention to me.” So that’s going well.
Riese: Yeah. That’s going poorly. Back to the powder room.
Carly: Bridal suite. I don’t know. What do we call it?
Riese: The bride suite.
Carly: The brides chambers. Let’s act as we’ve never been to a wedding and have no idea what to call anything.
Riese: Yeah. It’s the lady room.
Carly: Back to the lady room at the wedding. The room for the ladies. They’re all talking about marriage and this and that. And they ask Shane if she’s married or has a boyfriend. And they ask her if she has a girlfriend. And they all make that face because it’s like, “Ooh, taboo.”
Riese: And she’s like, “Not anymore.”
Carly: Great answer.
Carly: And they’re like, “Do you want to get married?” And then one of them is like, “Gay people can’t get married, idiot.”
Riese: And then I actually love this. When she says that gay people can’t get married, the other one’s like, “They can still pretend.” You’re calling a spade and I appreciate that. I could see how people would be offended by it, but I was like, “You know what? This is real.”
Carly: Oh, my God.
Riese: Because it is. It always did feel like a little bit like, “Oh, we’re having a commitment ceremony.” It always felt that way. It felt a little weird. But I love that joke. I mean, on the surface, it’s like a degrading joke,. But that’s almost what I appreciate by this, that they’re putting this thing in there.
Carly: It’s also honest-
Riese: Yeah. It’s honest-
Carly: … in a way. Because at the time there’s absolutely was an element of like, “We are pretending.”
Riese: Yeah. And Shane says that she doesn’t want to get married, but she admires people who do or something. And Shane’s going to get married later, you guys. Not in this series, but in L Word Generation Q, she’s married.
Carly: Oh, my God.
Riese: I wonder what happened. Back to The Planet.
Carly: The Planet. Bette Potter approaches. Well, this is awkward. Tina’s here talking about Bette, going on and on about Bette on this date with this woman whose name we don’t know. And Bette approaches, and she’s just like, “Oh, my God, hi, you guys go here? It’s so weird. Did not expect to see you here at The Planet of all places, the only coffee shop or restaurant or bar in all of West Hollywood.”
Riese: Yeah. Later they go to the Olive Garden.
Carly: That’s true.
Riese: And Bette’s like, “You can come have lunch with us.” And Tina is just like well and Denise is like-
Denise: You know what? Go ahead. That’s okay. I have to get back to the office any way.
Tina: Are you sure?
Denise: Absolutely. I think you have some things to figure out.
Riese: And Tina’s like, “What? Nothing. What? What do you mean?.” Then we go to jail.
Carly: Let’s go to jail.
Riese: Dusty is working out. She’s doing some exercises.
Carly: Dusty is doing some elevated pushups, which look very complicated and very, honestly, advanced and scary. And I was really like, “Wow, brave.” And Helena is acting like she’s writing in a diary or something, but is just starring at Dusty.
Riese: That’s all she’s doing.
Carly: That’s it. And then-
Riese: She’s holding a pen.
Carly: She’s like, “I’m holding this pen as a prop, both in the scene and in real life.” And then a guard walks by and is like, “Shower time, ladies.” And they we’re like, “Whoa, that’s cool. We’re going to have some cool stuff happening soon.” I know this show just wanted so badly to do a prison scene in a shower. I mean, this show just… It’s almost shocking they haven’t done it.
Riese: I feel like every person in this show just loves to shower. Orange is the New Black opened in the shower.
Carly: That’s very true.
Riese: Speaking of showers—.
Carly: Tell me.
Riese: After the showers, there’s sunshine and sunshine shines on The Planet and we’re going back to The Planet.
Carly: Yes. Brought it back around, perfect.
Riese: Max is in line for the bathroom and Tom is in line for the bathroom.
Carly: And they’re going to investigate a bathroom mystery together.
Riese: Why is the door locked? There are stalls in there. And of course, anyone who’s been to a gay venue knows that it’s locked because girls are scissoring in there.
Riese: They’re talking about their feelings. They’re doing it. They’re doing sex activities. But also, that’s rude. Other people have to pee.
Carly: This is a public establishment. This is a restaurant.
Riese: It’s mid day.
Carly: The sun is up in the sky.
Riese: As aforementioned, the sun is out.
Carly: Finally these two girls run out of the bathroom holding hands and giggling. But Max and Tom were checking each other out a little bit. And then they go into the bathroom and whatever. Then we go up to whatever Bette was here for at the other part of the Planet, which was lunch with Jodi and Alice. And now Tina has joined them and everyone eating salad.
Riese: And Bette’s just curious about this woman, and what does she do for a living? And Jodi is like, “That’s a horrible question. Why are you asking that?” Which again, perfect. Because also you’re not allowed to act that interested in your ex’s date in front of your current girlfriend. That’s against the rules of life. That’s against Papi’s Rules of poker. It’s against all the rules that they have posted the pool that I can’t go to. And it’s also against all of the rules of Life.
Carly: The board game?
Riese: Correct. Great. Tom comes out and says-
Tom: “I just pissed next to the cutest boy alive.”
Riese: I mean, and who hasn’t?
Carly: Tina says she has to go buy a dress for this wedding. And Alice says Tasha didn’t leave the military. She was delayed on her deployment. There’s a mention of some double date happening tonight. This is our usual “exposition at The Planet scene.” But they are bouncing around a little, so we’re not really getting the full information. And then Bette definitely thinks Paige burned Wax down.
Riese: Yeah. They’re all like, “Obviously, Paige did it.” And Alice is like, “I’m worried about Shane because things are escalating.”
Carly: And like, what does that mean?
Riese: And Bette explains to Jodi that Shane is a heartbreaker. But no one’s ever burned anything down for Shane before.
Carly: Exactly. Anyway, meanwhile, Shane is fucking the bride’s sister as this conversation is happening.
Riese: Yeah. I think they’re both having a good time.
Carly: It seems that way. Yeah.
Riese: So good for them.
Carly: Good for them. We go to the army base, and Tasha wants to talk to the captain. She is seeking counsel. She has not been formally notified, but she’s pretty sure she’s under investigation for homosexual conduct.
Riese: Yeah. And Beech is just sitting there probably imagining Tasha having sex with a girl.
Carly: Yeah. He was all so excited to see her. They clearly had a great relationship. And then the minute she said the word “homosexual,” he shuts down and becomes completely cold and shitty to her.
Riese: And he tells her that those cases are almost impossible to disprove because they’re usually true. And “don’t you think that’s understandable?” And um, no.
Carly: Lord. Anyway, homophobia, yay.
Riese: Just like that.
Carly: So we go back to the Salad Party — no, we go the Planet where everyone’s still eating salad.
Riese: Not a salad tossing party though, right? Not yet?
Carly: No, not currently.
Riese: Did you get it? The joke?
Carly: Yes. No, I got it. Okay. So, Max walks by and Tom’s like, “There’s the boy I like.” And then.
Riese: Everyone’s like teeehhe… And Tom’s like, “What’s wrong with him?” “Is he not gay?” And then they’re like, “Well he’s not gay anymore because he used to be a lesbian.” And then Tom was like [GASP!] Like he just found out he was a serial killer.
Carly: Oh, yeah. Bette goes, “he’s a transman” in this very like — uh kinda way. And then Tom stands-
Riese: And that’s one word.
Carly: Yes she says “transman” as one word. And then Tom is like, “Oh, my God, I didn’t know.” Like as if they were like, “He actually is dying.” It’s like, “Oh, my God. I didn’t know.”
Riese: Yeah. There’s so many other things that I think were more believable that could have been said before, “Oh, my God. I didn’t know.”
Carly: So that was not handled very well at all.
Riese: “He is responsible for Spacegate” and then Tom would have been like, “Oh, my God-
Carly: “I didn’t know.”
Riese: “I didn’t know.” It’s real.
Carly: Oh, my God.
Riese: And now it is time for us to meet a new character.
Carly: Hey, remember, last week when you said how happy you were that they didn’t introduce any new characters?
Riese: Yeah. I hate this one too—
Carly: They heard you loud and clear.
Riese: Again, Kit and Max talking about the things in the worlds. And Max is like, “That girl has been sitting there reading Some of Her Parts for three days and hasn’t changed her clothes.” Which I found alarming. Has she been sleeping there under a bench?
Riese: You know what? It’s fine. It’s television.
Carly: It’s television. Suspension of disbelief.
Riese: So Kit goes over to talk to her. I mean, again, suspension of disbelief that she’s saying they sell the pear polenta tart for $7 a slice when I think we’re pretty aware it’s like $7 million a slice.
Carly: Yeah. First of all, I was so thrilled to have a mention of the pear polenta tart, which hasn’t happened since Season 2. I made some kind of sound. But I think she’s lying about-
Riese: About the cost-
Carly: … the cost. Which is a real bummer.
Riese: Of course, wants Adele feel better because she’s offering her a free slice of it, just didn’t want Adele to feel like, “Oh, I’m eating a million dollar slice of pie.” She wants her to feel like, “It’s a $7 slice of pie.” Because she’s starving. But also a pie is just empty carbs, so she’s not going to be full after eating it.
Carly: You’ll get the sugar crash in a little while. And then you’re going to be like, “I wish I had a little more protein.”
Riese: Yeah. It’s like when you have a bagel and then 20 minutes later, you’re like, “I’m starving.” Adele says that Jennifer Schecter is her favorite author.
Carly: Now, did you leave your body when she said that?
Riese: I thought, “What!!?!!?” But you know what? Everyone has a fan.
Carly: That’s true. This isn’t just a fan. She’s like a Jenny Stan. She’s read “Some of her Parts” five times.
Riese: Which is basically like doing five triathlons in terms of what it does to you as a person, how it wears you down. Although, I guess, triathlons make you stronger. So I guess more accurately; it would be like getting buried in a pile of dirt 10 times and having to crawl your way out.
Carly: That feels like an apt analogy.
Riese: I’m just going to talk by myself and say that on my hard drive; the book I was writing that year, the folder where I kept all the pieces of it was called Some of My Parts. As a joke reference.
Carly: No, of course. That’s so funny.
Riese: (weird voice) It’s so funny.
Carly: I’ll do things like that too, like inside jokes that are only going to be seen by me for me.
Riese: Yeah. But just now I finally had an opportunity to tell someone.
Carly: Yeah. And that was wonderful.
Carly: So then she’s like, “See that guy over there, that guy lives with Jenny.” And Adele’s like, “No way. Oh, my God.” And she’s like, “Do you want to meet him?” She’s like, “No, I can’t.” She’s like, “You must.” And Kit drags her across the cafe. We find out this girl’s name is Adele Channing.
Riese: Which is a very sophisticated name.
Carly: Do you think she’s related to Carol Channing?
Riese: Absolutely. I think that they’re sisters.
Carly: Sisters? You say like a granddaughter or something. But, okay.
Riese: No. Sisters.
Carly: Okay, great. I love that.
Riese: Sometimes people have different ages, it’s modern living. Also speaking of sophistication. We then go over to the pools where Shane is doing the hair of Bret, Chet, whatever his name is. Brad, Tear, Fred, whatever. From the outside, the lady that Shane was just fucking does a little wave.
Carly: A little wave.
Riese: And that’s that scene. That’s the end of that scene. And then we roll into The Planet where Jenny is coming in like a whirling dervish holding her dry cleaning. She cuts in line. And I put this clip on my Twitter yesterday.
Carly: I saw.
Riese: Because the extra who Jenny cuts in front of just makes full use of her time on screen and gives Jenny this look of disgust-
Carly: It’s beautiful-
Riese: … that I’ll never forget.
Carly: No, never. It’s fantastic. And so she’s really stressed out and she really needs a new assistant. And then Kit’s like, “Hey, meet Adele. She’s your biggest fan.” And Jenny’s like-
Jenny: “It’s great. You’ve met me.”
Carly: Which was very great and very funny. I think if Jenny of like a year or so prior to this moment had met a huge fan of Jenny, she would have been really gracious and like… “Oh, my God!” She would have been truly deeply moved by that. But instead this version of Jenny meets her biggest fan. And she is jus above it all, really dismissive to her. But somehow they’re able to convince her to sit down.
Riese: So Adele is like, “I’ve read Some Of Her Parts a million times. And also I adapted, thus spoke Johnny Schechter into a screenplay for my women’s studies class.”
Carly: And she’s like, “ADAPTED?!”
Riese: She’s like, “How dare you.”
Carly: She was looking for dollar signs immediately.
Riese: She’s like, “Don’t worry. It was just for a class.” And then we find out that she went to school with Carly.
Carly: Yeah. This is so exciting for me personally. She went to the University of Central Florida, which is in Orlando, Florida, and is my alma mater. Wow, this is a very special episode. I remember losing my shit when we watched this the first time, because I was like, “No one ever talks about the University of Central Florida in any regard ever.” So for it to be named dropped as the school a fictional character went to life, that’s unheard of. It’s not like NYU, or UCLA or something that people talk about on shows. Like, “This character went to this college. It’s never UCF.
Riese: Yeah. This is the only time anyone’s ever mentioned UCF in any piece of pop culture.
Riese: It’s never been created.
Carly: And this is such a real treat. So let me go back to the wedding. And the other bridesmaid is also getting fucked by Shane. And then-
Riese: In the very visible, in a room that is literally all windows.
Carly: Overlooking where everyone’s getting their photos taken, I think.
Riese: Correct, yeah.
Carly: This is wild.
Riese: This is got to be in the background of some photos and I can’t wait to see that. She’s gonna blow those up.
Carly: Oh, my God. Computer enhance! You know what I mean?
Riese: They’ll photoshop her out.
Carly: And then she comes and she cries and thanks Shane. And then tells her that, “That asshole Rex is here with his wife. Don’t leave my side tonight.” And this was the point at which I was like, “Shane, you need to disappear. You need to run. This is bad.”
Riese: First of all, we all knew Rex Manning was a creep. Everyone has seen Empire Records.
Riese: No one is surprised to find out that Rex sucks. Second of all, sometimes I feel like there’s this thing where straight women think they’re doing you a favor.
Riese: Especially during this time period. Like, “Oh, of course, my interest in fucking you is such a gift.” It doesn’t even occur to them that you might not be interested in fucking them again.
Carly: Ever speaking to them again?
Riese: Or not leaving their side all night? Or even fucking them at all. I mean, Shane is obviously interested in that. Actually, every woman in this family aside from the bride, has this entitlement to like, “Oh, well…”
Carly: “Oh, Hot Dyke is here. That’s for me.”
Riese: Yeah. “She’ll definitely fuck me.”
Carly: It’s like, “What is this?” Yeah, very confusing.
Riese: Also their dresses all fit wrong. I don’t know why they picked those dresses.
Carly: Yeah. I don’t know what the costume department was doing this week.
Riese: Nothing because we saw a lot of boobs.
Carly: We go to Phyllis’s office where Joyce shows up with a massive bouquet of something or other.
Riese: Yeah, she brings a forest.
Carly: She brings like a full Rainforest Cafe with her.
Carly: And Phyllis is like, “Hey, sit down, let’s have a chat.” And she’s like, “You know that thing you asked me?” And she’s like, “It was so cute when you said U-hauled the other time.” It was a very funny moment. But then Joyce seems to understand why Phyllis is bringing this up. And she’s like, “Look, I know you just got out of this very lengthy marriage and all this upheaval in your life.” And like, “Girl, take your time. I’m not going anywhere.” Which is so nice of her. What she doesn’t understand is that Phyllis wants to see other people.
Riese: Specifically, she’d like to see Camilla. Which, by the way, I would like to say really sucks when someone leaves you for someone they met at the event that you threw.
Carly: Yeah that sucks.
Riese: It sucks.
Carly: That sucks.
Riese: But anyway, it is really funny because she’s like, “That’s my friend.” And she’s like, “She’s not your friend.” She’s like, “She’s a friend of a friend!”
Carly: Look, group dynamics are very complicated.
Riese: Yeah. And also another complicated dynamic is the one that Joyce apparently has with Phyllis where she just doesn’t count her opinion as real.
Carly: She just immediately is start saying things that sound a lot like Phyllis’s ex-husband when he was trying to convince her not to leave.
Riese: Oh, my God, you’re so right.
Carly: It just feels like a retread of that. And I’m like, “Phyllis, the call is coming from inside your office! Shane, run! Phyllis, run!”
Riese: Yeah. “Look out, Here Phyllis Runs!” Was a discarded potential episode title for this.
Carly: That would have been so good.
Riese: Joyce is like, “You’re being rational. Change your mind.”
Carly: Like, “I’m going to stop you there before you say something you’re going to regret.” Like, “Oh, come on.”
Riese: I don’t understand why people want to be with people who don’t want to be with them.
Carly: I don’t either. We go back to The Planet where now Adele and Kit and Max and Jenny are all sitting together and talking. And they’re interrogating Adele about the University of Central Florida. She says that she went there because it was the only school in Florida that had both a film program and a women’s studies program. I don’t remember what I said about this at the time, but-
Riese: I do-
Carly: … please tell me.
Riese: Because I looked it up.
Carly: Great. Illuminate me
Riese: You said that UCF is not known for their film program and that their women’s studies program was a certificate.
Carly: At the time, it was. Absolutely, you could not minor or major in women’s studies. I know because I tried. And the closest you could get was a certificate in Women’s Studies. And by the time I was on my fifth year of my undergrad, I decided that instead of taking the remaining courses I needed to get those few extra credits for my certificate, that I was just going to be done with school. So I never got my women’s studies certificate. I did get a film degree from there. Took me five years.I was a sheltered kid growing up, and I didn’t “party,” I guess you could say, until college. I didn’t really do anything in high school other than study and learn. I was a nerd. So I went crazy in college. I was partying too hard, man, you know? Just flying too close to the sun.
Riese: Party Hardy Carly. That’s what they called you!
Carly: That’s what they called me on the UCF Campus. I don’t know if the statement of, “it’s the only Florida school to have both of those tracks,” is correct. But, yeah. The UCF film program didn’t really become known until the Blair Witch Project.
Riese: Oh, but that was in ’99.
Carly: And that was in ’99. So that was what put them on the map. It’s unfortunately why I went there. I mean, I wanted to go to a school in Florida. It’s a long story. This isn’t really about me. Adele says she got into NYU, but she went to UCF because she wanted to be by her mo, She could take care of her mom. It’s like, “I got into USC, but I didn’t want to go to USC because I wanted to be on the East Coast to be closer to my family.” Question mark? I don’t really know.
Riese: Is it because she loved Disneyworld?
Jenny: Because she loves Disney World.
Carly: Yes. So then she’s like, “Jenny, your book saved my life basically.” This is definitely something Jenny wanted to hear. Jenny now cares about Adele.
Riese: She’s warming up, but she’s not all the way warm. Hearing that your work saved someone’s life is like the point, is literally the point of writing. So I was glad that she started to thaw up a little bit here.
Carly: Adele says she’s been hanging out at the Planet because she heard that it was the inspiration for the Pluto Cafe in Lez Girls.
Riese: No, I reject that.
Carly: Pluto Cafe.
Riese: I reject the Pluto Cafe.
Carly: Pluto Café.
Riese: I think Pluto Cafe is like what the dining hall is called in Tomorrowland. Speaking of-
Carly: And then Max or Kit, or one of them is like, “Don’t you have a wedding that you’re supposed to be at right now?” And she’s like, “Oh, shit, I’m late.” And Adele is like, “Oh, my God, I’m so sorry I made you late. Is there anything I can do to help?” And Jenny’s like, “Oh, my God. It’s so funny that you asked that because, I don’t know, maybe you could go to Williams-Sonoma and pick up a gift from their registry on my behalf and then deliver it to the wedding. I don’t know if that’s something you could do?” And as it turns out, Adele has nothing but free time and would love nothing more than to do that for Jenny. Yeah.
Riese: All right. Adele was like, “I’m just going to read some of her parts again, so why not just go to Williams-Sonoma.”
Carly: Then Kit’s like, “I thought you wanted that job, Max.” And he’s like, “No.”
Riese: I love this. Now that they’re actually giving Max a real personality and not just a collection of stereotypes, he puts up with Jenny’s bullshit. Both Shane and Max are so patient with Jenny. He knew how to handle that situation so well.
Carly: It’s so true. We go to the shower of the prison. They really put a lot of scenes-
Riese: It’s boob time-
Carly: … between the prison shower scene and the mention of shower time in the previous present scene. They really made you wait for this.
Riese: Yeah, they really did.
Riese: A lot of boobs.
Carly: A lot of boobs. Helena literally drops the soap, which just is a real bummer. And then a lady fully has an entire knife in the shower. And was running it up Helena’s leg and calls her a fluff, and puts the knife at her throat. And it’s very aggressive. And then Dusty intervenes.
Riese: Yeah. Then Dusty is like-
Dusty: Because she’s with me.
Riese: And then Jackie has to let Helena go. And also Dusty has nice arms.
Carly: Dusty continues to have great arms.
Riese: To have nice arms. So good job, Helena did not get sliced.
Carly: Nope. Helena survived, but had no idea what the fuck was going on because everyone was using prison slang, which Helena obviously knows nothing about. We’ll come back to that. So we’re back at Alice’s. And Tasha is like, “That meeting with the captain did not go well.” And Alice is like, “All right cool. Let’s get you a civilian attorney.” Tasha’s like, “I can’t afford one and I also don’t want one.”
Riese: I wish she had called Joyce Wishnia.
Carly: Literally, as Alice was saying, that I was like, “Oh, God, here comes Joyce.”
Riese: Like, “This is a landmark case! Here’s my strategy!”
Carly: If you walk into the court and Joyce is your lawyer, and you’re being tried by the military for homosexual conduct, you will lose instantly. She comes in with a tie screaming about whatever.
Riese: Yeah. A suit that doesn’t fit even though she’s rich.
Carly: You can’t afford a tailor? Come on Joyce.
Riese: Come on Joyce, tailor your suit!
Carly: You’re rich.
Riese: Tasha’s like, “I don’t want to overturn. Don’t ask. Don’t tell. I just want to stay in the military.” Also another thing about this scene is that, this is Alice’s kitchen, right?
Riese: She has posters on the wall that’s like “Manhattan,” “Paris.” You know what I’m talking?
Carly: Oh, my god. Yes.
Riese: Those generic waiting room-
Carly: Like Bed, Bath and art beyond art department.
Riese: Yeah. Like Homegoods clearance rack. In this scene, I mean, basically they’re just struggling. And I think Alice is being very mature and patient. As a viewer, I am still just very curious about why Tasha is in the military at all and why she wants to stay in the military and why she wants to see action in the military, or whatever.
Carly: Yeah. The show hasn’t really given Tasha enough of a backstory to explain her life and who she is and what she’s been through that has led her to where she is now. So we have no real basis. A lot of the times and other scenes she’s a little disconnected from Tasha’s whole experience and her perspective on things. But at least here, she’s like, “I’m having a hard time with this, but I am on your side, blah, blah, blah.” She seems to be supportive of her, but is still a little confused. But I’m also-
Riese: Which is completely fair.
Carly: Yeah, absolutely. At the same time, I’m like, “Yeah, you should be on her side because this is probably your fault that she’s getting investigated for homosexual behavior!” But, yeah. It’s circumstances.
Riese: The thing is that like, that being in the military is such a big deal, right? And the different reasons someone could be in the military are vast, right?
Riese: And so there are certain reasons that Tasha could be in the military. If she thinks the military is a good organization that does good work, that would be good to know.
Carly: Right. That would be good to know.
Riese: I just don’t get it. I don’t get it. I don’t understand why she’s in the military.
Carly: This really feels like the thing where the writers of the show were like, “Okay, going into Season 4, we’re gonna have a Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell storyline.” They came up with a character, and they’re like, “Who’s a really liberal character that would be so funny to see them hook up with the person in the military? Oh, it’s Alice. Oh, my God. Of course.” She’s going to have nothing in common with this person, which is true. She has very little in common with Tasha, but I’m sure they have some things in common because they do seem to get along really well and they like each other a lot. They’re in love.
Riese: Right. Well, what are the things?
Carly: We don’t know. They won’t tell us because they didn’t-
Riese: I don’t think if I could handle this-
Carly: … know. And that sucks.
Riese: That sucks. The way that they handled her character really sucks because she’s also one of their few Black characters.
Carly: Right. And they’re just really doing a disservice to Rose Rollins as an actor and to the character.
Riese: Yeah, and to us.
Carly: And to us, 12 years later.
Riese: I would have preferred a story where a Tasha didn’t want to stay in the military.
Carly: I know. I’d prefer that story. Maybe it’s a different story, but whatever. So we go back to the wedding, which is just-
Riese: Oh, my God.
Carly: The colors of the wedding are like pastel pink. This is a very white, very heterosexual group.
Riese: A lot of extras got paid on this day.
Carly: They sure did.
Riese: A lot of them.
Carly: The wedding has begun. There’s the flower girl or the whatever. And then Jenny walks down the aisle because she is late, and just runs in and tries to find a seat.
Riese: This is an iconic Jenny moment-
Riese: … teetering down the aisle and then going past everyone. She knocks a woman’s hat off her head. Her dress is a garbage bag. She wearing a garbage bag dress.
Carly: This is obviously an homage to her garbage bag from earlier season.
Riese: Yes. Or a homage to the “I Can’t Stand The Rain” music video.
Jenny: “I’m so sorry that I’m late.”
Tina: “Yeah, we were all waiting.”
Jenny: “Oh, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to make you wait.”
Tina: “Nice dress.”
Jenny: “Thanks Tina.”
Riese: I loved Tina in this exchange.
Carly: I know. I did too.
Riese: And then of course inside, because this is a TV show and there’s a wedding. So what happens before a wedding and a TV show or a movie? The bride is having second thoughts.
Carly: Exactly. I have never seen a wedding in film or television where someone, usually the bride, is not having second thoughts. It’s almost always the bride because the way the heterosexual-
Riese: Men don’t have thoughts.
Carly: Well, that. But the classic traditional “straight people” wedding, is like the groom and his dudes are standing and waiting for the bride to walk in. It’s always that shot of the dudes with the priest or the officiant being like, “Whoa, where is she?” It’s like the most common fucking image.
Riese: But good news, you guys, Madison and her husband do enjoy traveling. They both enjoy traveling and riding horses. So basically they both enjoy being rich.
Carly: They enjoy adventure.
Riese: And, yeah, they love adventure. “We’ve always dreamed of going to Paris.” “We like the beach.” Come on, girl.
Riese: Traveling is very niche interest. So I’m glad that they have that in common. And then Shane’s like, “Sounds like you’re compatible.” Shane is being way too sexy for this whole conversation. But also I would like to say that I think this is Shane’s peak. I think Shane is peaking in some way in this moment. I think Kate is maybe peaking in some way at this moment. And she says that Madison really reminds her of someone she used to know, which is a good thing. And my immediate thought, obviously, because she’s about to get married is Carmen. And that’s why I put in my recap. I remember people saying like, “Oh, she looks like Dana.”
Carly: But she totally looks like Dana. Watching it this time, I thought she must be talking about Dana. But thematically it doesn’t make sense. But the girl does have a very similar bone structure of her face to Dana. But then didn’t this girl also play young Bette in a flashback?
Riese: Yeah, maybe [they really recognized her] from the Bette flashback thing.
Carly: It could be any of these-
Riese: She looks familiar to me too….
Carly: I mean, they all look a little bit similar. Who was it? I think it was someone we had on the podcast was saying that they kept getting Dana and Bette confused in Season One.
Carly: I don’t remember who it was now.
Riese: I don’t either, but I did too in the first episode. The first time I saw it, I got Bette and Dana confused.
Carly: All right.
Riese: Jail. We’re back in jail. And Kit is walking down the jail runway like it’s a jail runway, like she owns the place. And it’s—.
Carly: Look at that confidence.
Riese: It almost makes it worth it that this weird thing is set up.
Carly: I honestly buy the layout of the prison purely because it gave us that scene.
Riese: So Kit is like visiting Helena and basically filling her in on what all the prison lingo means and what she needs to do.
Carly: Yes. That’s why she’s been called here.
Riese: And she does. And it’s very helpful information.
Carly: I mean, it’s stuff Helena wasn’t going to figure it out on her own. Though hearing it, it all feels pretty self explanatory.
Riese: And we also realize that Helena has been intensely, is obviously like falling for Dusty.
Carly: Oh, yeah.
Riese: But also Dusty is the only person she’s seen outside of the showers. They’re eating meals in their cells. So she actually hasn’t looked at anyone besides the other women in the shower for this whole time. And that’s good. It’s good. If you’re with one person at the end of the world, it’s good for her to have nice arms.
Riese: And a “quiet intensity.” he’s like, “I’ve watching her.” And Kit says it sounds like Dusty will protect you, so you’re in good shape. And Helena is like, “Awesome.”
Carly: Helena does not ask if Angus is still around.
Riese: Yeah, she has no questions about Angus. So that’s something that we have in common.
Carly: If Helena stole the money in the finale of Season 4, at what point was she thrown in jail? And does any of the news of anyone in the group… Is anything confusing to her? Does she want to know what’s going on with anybody? It doesn’t matter.
Riese: I mean, we didn’t see their whole convo. Probably the whole first part was about Angus.
Carly: Of course. Helena was probably like, “I’m dying to hear more about Angus.”
Riese: Yeah. “Tell me about your breakup with Angus.” Then we go back to, I don’t know… What era would you say Jodi’s hairstyle is from? ’88?
Carly: Definitely 80s.
Riese: 88. Yeah.
Carly: 1880s. I’m just kidding. That’s one of my favorite 30 Rock jokes. Yeah. I would say ’87? ’88?
Riese: Yeah. Jodi is bringing a lot to the table.
Carly: A lot of volume in her hair.
Riese: They’re at the Olive Garden. It’s Tasha and Alice, Jodi and Bette. They’re obviously having great time as you can imagine.
Carly: As you can imagine, this group.
Riese: Tasha’s at a terrible mood.
Carly: Yeah, Tasha had a horrible day. So they definitely should’ve canceled, but didn’t. So that’s good. And then lo and behold, who else is at the same restaurant but Phyllis and Joyce!
Riese: Phyllis and Joyce.
Carly: They’re three tables over.
Riese: Right over there.
Carly: Right over there.
Riese: Also enjoying endless soup, salad and breadsticks.
Carly: And delicious house wine.
Riese: And delicious house wine. Yeah. There are so many wine glasses on that table by the end of it that I’m like, “You’re wasting wine. You can’t just turn it into water.” Or do you turn water into… Listen- and Jodi is like- “They’re breaking up.”
Riese: Which you can tell out of the body language.
Carly: Body language, that they are breaking up. We go over to their table and Joyce is literally like, “You can’t leave me cause I’m awesome, and you’re not going to find anyone better. And I’m good in bed and I’m smart and I’m rich.” So we go back to the wedding reception where Shane is hanging out with Tina and all of the bridesmaids that she has fucked are all waving or blowing kisses across the room.
Riese: The entitlement!
Carly: It’s a lot. Tina declares this “the straightest wedding on earth,” which I previously noted in the ceremony scene. That is correct. She says, “No lesbian is going to get laid here.” And Shane looks right into the camera and winks!! I wish. Can you imagine? Can you actually imagine if—
Riese: The camera had zoomed in and she’d been like [noise intended to represent a wink]!!! Again, Tina’s energy here. I love it. You can tell she just threw on her summer dress. She’s cool. She looks great. And she’s just like, “My life is so dumb right now.” You know what?
Carly: My life is so-
Riese: Tina’s life sucks right now. I think that she has that energy that someone has sometimes where they are a certain way. And then when their entire life falls apart, they somehow become like-
Carly: Like cool?
Riese: Yeah. Like more-
Carly: Tina is so much more interesting and chill.
Riese: Down to earth, kind of. You know what I mean?
Riese: She’s still in love with Bette who’s dating someone else who she’s madly in love with. And her job sucks. It could not suck more. She is producing a movie directed or written by a friend of hers who she hates, and the movie is ABOUT HER.
Carly: Her own boss doesn’t know her own job title. A billionaire investor guy is now pulling all the strings. I mean, she’s in hell.
Riese: This is bad.
Carly: I think she’s in a real “burn it to the ground” emotional mental space. And that is what is making her so much more fun right now.
Riese: Yes, I agree.
Carly: It’s fun Tina.
Riese: Fun Tina. And then we go to Fine Shane because Shane’s like, “I’m fine.”
Carly: Fun Tina, Fine Shane. They go to the bar and Jenny runs up because she was talking to Willie, which is what she calls William, aka Wallace Shawn-
Riese: No one should ever say the word “willy.”
Carly: No. I didn’t even want to say it out loud, but I did and now I’m upset about it. Anyway I guess everyone in the bridal party was just raving about Shane —for obvious reasons. And so Jenny was like-
Riese: “They love the way you did them..”
Carly: “Dot dot dot…” So she’s like, “Oh, my God, maybe Shane could do the hair on the movie.” And he said, “Yes.” Oh, my God.
Riese: “It’s been wonderful, and everyone’s so excited!”
Carly: Actually, Jenny, if you’re the director, you can make that decision yourself. You don’t need his permission. I mean, whatever you need, like studio approval, but he’s not the studio. He’s just the financier. But, whatever.
Riese: The dialogue in this whole thing is so good.
Carly: It’s really good.
Riese: When she’s like “Tina what did you get the bride” and she’s like, “Four espresso cups, I guess?”
Jenny: “Tina, what did you get the bride?”
Tina: “I got the bride four espresso cups.”
Shane: “That’s nice.”
Carly: I love that Jenny is suddenly rich and is rubbing it in everyone’s faces. That is the funniest thing about Jenny right now.
Riese: And she’s like-
Jenny: “What did I get the bride?”
Adele: “You got the bride limited edition KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer, metallic chrome”
Carly: And then she goes-
Adele: “It’s a dream appliance.”
Riese: And I’m like, “Yeah, it is Adele. Way to shop.”
Carly: It’s crazy that that’s still a dream appliance today in 2020. People still go apeshit for that fucking KitchenAid Stand Mixer and all the different colors.
Riese: That’s why people get married.
Carly: Yeah. That’s not why I got married.
Riese: Did you get one?
Carly: No, we didn’t want one. We mix bowls by hand. We do it the old fashioned way.
Riese: Oh, you make your own bowls?
Carly: We do now that we are home all the time.
Riese: I make my own bowls too out of paper.
Carly: Yeah. I love doing that. I love to put cereal in them and then they fall apart.
Riese: Yeah. It’s a race against time every time.
Carly: But I eat cereal pretty quickly. So it’s not a big deal for me.
Riese: Speaking of eating, Jenny is eating cake off the present, but she doesn’t like it. She goes, “I don’t like it.” And she puts-
Carly: That part with the cake is funny.
Jenny: “I don’t like that.”
Carly: Adele walks this huge ass box up and there’s just a little piece of cake perched on it. She’s like, “Jenny, I brought you some cake.” I’m like, “I thought you just walked into this event with the box. What are you doing?” It’s incredible. It’s really a wonderful moment. And then a bridesmaid runs up to ask if Shane wants to dance. And Shane is like, “Oh, my God, I have to get out of this.” She looks at Tina to save her, but Tina sees Aaron and has to go talk to him and remind him of what her correct job title is again. So she leaves Shane and Shane’s like, “I don’t dance. Okay, I’m going to go to the bathroom and I’ll see you later.” And somehow that works for a moment.
Riese: Yeah. Once again, the girl is assuming that Shane wants to be part of her cover for Rex Manning, which — Shane never said that. She did not consent to any of that. You didn’t ask her what she wanted ever, so stop it.
Carly: We go back to The Olive Garden, Ben and Jodi are PDA central at the table.
Riese: Yeah. That was weird.
Carly: Which felt super unnecessary. I mean, I think everyone’s different. Everyone has their own different internal gauge on that kind of stuff. For me, I don’t want to be a full Val Cherish here, but I’m a little [Val Cherish voice] “I don’t need to see that.” And Lauren, you don’t need to play a clip of Val Cherish there because I sounded just like her-
Riese: Yeah. Carly did it perfect.
Carly: That was maybe my best. I don’t need to see that. And I say it a lot.
Riese: It was obviously just there so that this whole thing could-
Carly: Yeah. I don’t really believe that they would actually act like they’re in high school-
Riese: And like — you’re in conversation.
Carly: You’re also eating.
Riese: Bette and Jodi In Conversation with Tasha and Alice at the-
Carly: Right. That’s why the people paid to see it.
Riese: They didn’t pay to watch them make out.
Carly: What is it? The 92nd Street Y, or whatever.
Riese: Yeah. The 92nd Street Y. We all went, we all had tickets.
Carly: It was all tickets, but they were making out on stage the whole time and they didn’t finish their unlimited pasta.
Riese: Yeah. They limited it.
Carly: Which is ridiculous. It’s-
Carly: … “Unlimited” is in the title.
Riese: Alice is like, “Tasha is being investigated for don’t ask, don’t tell.” Tasha is annoyed that Alice told them, because she didn’t want Alice to tell them. And then she gets upset and they walk away from the table and then they have a fight. Again, both of their fights have ended very maturely. But in the meantime they’re both like — Tasha was being kind of mean?
Carly: Yeah. And Alice seems to still refuse to acknowledge any of Tasha’s boundaries. I actually agreed with Alice saying something here just because all you need to do is say something to those two and they’ll cut it out and they’ll be understanding. But I also completely get where Tasha is coming from where she really doesn’t want to have to bring this up and then have to hear everyone’s opinions about the military and Don’t ask, don’t tell. But also the show hasn’t told us why Tasha wants to stay in the military. So really, everyone is right and also wrong. And it ends with the two of them apologizing to each other. And Alice is like, “I’m really struggling with trying to understand why you want to be part of an institution that doesn’t want you.” Which is a really…. point, I think.
Riese: Yeah. And also an institution that is mass murdering innocent people all over the world.
Carly: Yes, exactly. And Tasha doesn’t have any answer for that. She’s just like, “You’re right. I’m sorry.” Okay.
Riese: We go back to jail.
Carly: Back to jail. Helena is trying to become best friends with Dusty now.
Riese: Yeah. She’s talking about Dorothy Dandridge, who was a very successful actress. She did overdose on antidepressants when she was in her 50s, I want to say, or 40s. And had a very difficult life because of racism.
Carly: Yay racism! Thanks for nothing.
Riese: And also her mom was a little bit gay, just a sidenote.
Carly: They’re talking about he because there’s photos of her that Dusty has put on her wall.
Riese: Yeah, the Carmen Jones poster.
Carly: Helena didn’t just pull Dorothy Dandridge completely out of thin air. What if she had? And Dusty was like, “Wait, are you serious? I’m such a fan.”
Riese: Yeah. I know. Then they would’ve been like, “Oh, my God, we have so much in common. Do you also like to travel and ride horses?” And she would have been like, “Yes.” And then they would have fallen in love. Just everyone knows, after watching this episode, I immediately pulled my copy of “The Hollywood Book of Death” off the shelf and read all about Dorothy Dandridge.
Carly: Nice. Helena mentioned something about “what happened earlier in the shower.” And Dusty is like, “I do not want anything from you.” And Helena’s like-
Riese: “Are you sure?” But-
Carly: “I mean, I heaaaarrrr what you’re saying, but I don’t think you mean it.”
Riese: “I’d love for Rex to see us together.” Then we go back to dinner. It does seem at this point… Okay. At this point they’re still in a booth. Later, then they’re suddenly not in a booth anymore. It was very confusing for me. But Alice and Tasha are doing an unforgivable thing, which is they’re leaving Jodi and Bette in the restaurant with Phyllis and Joyce.
Carly: Well, several things have happened. Alice and Tasha went off to talk and Joyce and Phyllis took their place at the table. Who does that?
Riese: Phyllis! She was trying to get away-
Carly: I mean, Phyllis was definitely trying to get away from Joyce, and Joyce is like a bulldozer of a person who just takes up space and inserts herself in everything. So actually the two of them sitting there makes sense. But it’s, I think, quite rude. They’re like, “Oh, sorry. We took your seats.” And they’re about to get up. And then, yeah, Alice and Tasha are like putting on coats and being like, “We’re going to go.” “Do you want to take your meals? You want to wrap your meals up to go?”
Riese: “Who’s paying? Are you gonna Venmo me later?”
Carly: This is The Olive Garden, you can get all those fresh breadsticks.
Riese: Yeah. You can ask for more. Don’t put a soggy breadstick in your to-go box. Also just ask your… I used to work there as I’ve mentioned in every episode of this podcast. — and you can just ask your server for a fresh breadstick.
Carly: It’s pretty simple.
Riese: Because your server feels sad for you when you want her to package up your little nub on top of your ravioli.
Carly: It’s true.
Riese: Just saying. So anyway, Jodi and Bette are really in for it.
Carly: Then Joyce says that it was her idea for them to spend time with other people. And I think as the audience we’re supposed to maybe for a second… This was confusing. I’m like, “As an audience, are we supposed to think that Joyce and Phyllis successfully talked about Phyllis seeing other people, and Joyce is cool with it?”
Carly: Because that’s clearly not what happened. It was a weird line. But Phyllis was like, “Oh, you should go get me another glass of wine.” And then the minute she leaves, she looks at Bette and Jodi and is like-
Phyllis: “Help me.”
Riese: Right. She said she was writing a graduate thesis in lesbian sex, but she seems like she’s at a very early level of education that she can’t do anything else without a lot of help from other lesbians. She’s learning the ropes.
Carly: Yeah, it takes time. This is a journey that’s going to take some time.
Riese: Yeah. Then we go back to the rich palace wealthy wedding.
Carly: Wealthy wedding.
Riese: And William is dancing with Jenny, which made me feel weird for Jenny. But she’s like, “You’re the only man in my life. And you know what? That girl, her life was changed by the book. And I think our movie’s going to make an impact!” And then Tina, standing next to Adele, and Tina’s like, “Oh, it makes me want to barf.” And Adele’s like, “I think it’s so beautiful that a man who plundered the earth for wealth is now making beautiful art.” And Tina’s like, “I’m going to go.”
Carly: Also at no point were Tina and Adele introduced to each other. It’s just so funny.
Riese: No. Yeah.
Carly: She’s like, “Tell Shane I left.” And she’s like, “Who are you? And who is Shane?”
Riese: “I don’t know your name.” And it’s like, “Yeah, you do. That’s Nina. It’s Nina.” Then we go back to the dinner. They’re at a table with chairs now, instead of at a booth.
Carly: It’s confusing.
Riese: And they’re getting up to leave.
Riese: And Jodi and Bette are having every couple’s favorite fight which is “who’] house are we going to sleep at tonight?” And all the reasons why your girlfriend might not want to stay at my place that you aren’t being honest about. And Jodi thinks Bette doesn’t want to come over to her place because it’s “too funky,” a word which nobody but my Mom has said in eons.
Carly: I think maybe the only other person is my mom, perhaps.
Riese: Also my mom lives in Royal Oak, which is a Detroit suburb, but it’s next to a town called Ferndale. And Ferndale’s like, gay, and my mom is always like, “It’s Funky Ferndale.” And I’m like, “Oh, my God, stop saying that word.” Even though I think the town goes along with it too. Anyway, we have a little “bringing it back around” moment here. Phyllis says that she already broke up with Joyce and Bette is like, “Some lesbians, you have to break up with them more than once!”
Carly: Incredible moment. We go back to the wedding. The bride gives Shane a hug and thanks her. Then Gina, one of the other ones is like, “Oh, go help me make Rex Manning jealous.” And then the other one is like, “I have a surprise for you.” And it’s very overwhelming for young Shane.
Riese: Again, also what’s the surprise? We never know.
Carly: We never know.
Riese: I think I know what the surprise is, is that she wants to bone again. And again.
Carly: We go back to prison. It’s nighttime. Dusty is having a nightmare. Helena hops off the top bunk down to the bottom bunk to comfort her. “Dusty, are you okay? You’re having a nightmare. Oh, no.” And Dusty wakes up and is like, “What the fuck? there’s a person right on top of my face.” And jumps out of bed and puts Helena in a chokehold. And then they make out.
Riese: And then Dusty pushes her against the wall. One of my favorite sex moves, pushing somebody against a wall.
Carly: It’s a classic.
Riese: It’s a classic. And they’re having a nice time. And Helena is trying to rationalize having sex with a murderer. And she’s asking me all these weird questions about it. And that’s when we find out that Dusty is in there for tax fraud.
Helena: “You were just defending someone, right? Or maybe you were set up. Did someone frame you?”
Dusty: “Nobody framed me.”
Helena: ‘I’m sure, whatever it was, you don’t mean to kill anyone!”
Dusty: “I didn’t kill anybody!”
Helena: “You didn’t?”
Dusty: “It was tax fraud!”
Riese: Which also makes perfect sense because Helena would not be in jail with a murderer.
Carly: No, of course not.
Riese: Okay. They’re hooking up now and we love this for them.
Carly: This is great for them. Good job everybody. We go back to the wedding where Shane is desperately trying to leave the hell that she has created for herself until a cocktail server hands her a note from the mother of the bride. Yup. That’s right. The same woman she checked out on the way in is waiting for her.
Riese: Shane sniffs the note.
Carly: Oh, yeah.
Riese: Do you think she put it inside her vagina?
Carly: I thought maybe she sprayed perfume on it.
Riese: Or she was she like, “Smells like bug spray.”
Carly: Elle Woods, all of her resumes had perfume on them in Legally Blonde. That’s what I thought of. But also that maybe she thought she put it in her vagina.
Riese: Oh, it’s like Plumeria. Yeah. Could be a lot of things. In line for coat check, everybody’s least favorite thing.
Carly: Oh, true. And Jenny offers Adele the assistant job that we knew was coming. And, oh boy, is she excited.
Riese: And it’s really cute because Jenny is actually almost being normal for like —
Carly: For like three seconds.
Riese: Yeah, she seems genuinely like, “Wow, this could be cool.” It’s like she’s a little bit back on earth. Shane goes upstairs where I guess that after giving away her daughter to be married, this woman went upstairs and put on some lingerie and and a trench coat.
Carly: As one does at a wedding.
Riese: Exactly. And then posed on her desk.
Carly: And she’s like, “Shane, I saw you looked at me earlier and it made me horny. Am I crazy?” I’m like, “That is such a incredible statement.”
Riese: And she says she’s been everywhere. She’s probably been to Disney World several times.
Carly: I’d say.
Riese: And she’s ridden horses across the Plains of Sweden. And she wants Shane to take her somewhere she’s never been before, which is obviously Shane’s obligation, it seems like, to all of the women in this family. Isn’t it weird all of these really terrible messages about consent that we all internalize from this show?
Carly: Yeah. Whoo [sound of wild disappointment over how The L Word handles consent] There isn’t a lot of time to unpack this today, but maybe someday!
Riese: No. Yeah, maybe someday I’ll just do like, “Here’s all the things that The L Word told us about how-
Carly: “How to exist in the sexual world, and they are all wrong.”
Riese: They were wrong.
Carly: All of it.
Riese: There’s a lot of boobs.
Carly: Oh, yeah. A lot of boobs. We go to the hallway where the other bridesmaids are all looking for Shane. And, oh my God, they can’t find her. Where is she? And then they hear the photocopier and they hear Rex Manning and they hear Renee Zellweger and they realize what happened. And they bust into the copy room.
Riese: They spill their speed all over the floor and bust right in.
Carly: She’s just freaking out about it. [as Gina in “Empire Records] “I could study all night if I was chowing down on speed too! You know that I could. Here’s one for your perfect little face! Ad you’re perfect body!” Okay I’m stopping! And so they open the door and find mom in there hooking up with Shane. And then mom calls her daughter-
Mom: “Some little twerp who barely knows how to tongue kiss!”
Riese: I know. And they call her, “You old cow.”
Carly: It’s honestly very funny. But that’s also just so deeply fucked up.
Riese: Yeah, it was really funny. I was like, “You all deserve each other, all of you guys.”
Carly: Yeah, you’re all horrible people. And then Shane runs out of there. She tries to get her keys to her car. Can’t find them, sees Jenny in her brand new Porsche convertible, question mark?
Riese: Oh, yeah. I was like, “All right.”
Carly: Okay. And she’s like, “Jenny.” And then just hops into the back of the car as Jenny’s driving away. Which I mean, good timing there. If you run out like a couple seconds later, you would have been stuck.
Riese: In the sequel, we’ll find out, does Shane return to the scene of the crime to obtain her vehicle? Or does she just leave it there? LIke Finley eventually does in a future episode of a spin off of this show?
Carly: I was so happy when they actually tied up that loose end about the bike and the car.
Riese: Yeah, everyone was obsessed with it except me.
Carly: Yeah, no, it plagued me all season. Anyway, that’s the episode.
Riese: That’s the episode.
Riese: Well, Carly?
Riese: Did you enjoy this piece of television?
Carly: I did. I thought it was fun. It’s a fun episode. There’s some great moments with everybody. The peak offensiveness of it was pretty lower than normal. It still had offensive moments, but they weren’t as severe as what we were used to before this episode. So I thought it was fun. I thought it was a fun rump. It’s a real rump Shane out there being slutty Shane. I love slutty Shane. That’s fun.
Riese: Yeah, that’s fun. A lot of physical humor, a lot of hair, boobs, arms, legs. Jenny eating the cake, Kit and Max being buddies.
Carly: Best friends.
Riese: Bette looked nice in her plaid flannel shirt that she was wearing in the beginning. Tina killing it. The first time Tina has ever been funny.
Carly: I’m like, “Good for you T.” Yeah. Get it Tina.
Riese: I actually think I like Tina this whole season now that I’m remembering it.
Carly: Oh, wow. I don’t remember enough of it to know if I do.
Riese: I can’t recall exactly.
Carly: But she’s off to an excellent start, which is something I’ve never been able to say about Tina before.
Riese: Yeah. I would say as usual that the most annoying thing about this episode was still just how shallow Tasha’s character is and also how difficult it is for us, as people that are not pro war, to figure out how the fuck to talk about it.
Carly: Because the show isn’t giving us enough to talk about. It’s very frustrating.
Riese: Yeah. I mean, it was a pretty impeccable episode. There was nothing where I was like, “Oh, my God, get me out of here. I hate this.” I didn’t write “I hate this” one time!
Carly: Yeah, no, I usually write that multiple times an episode.
Riese: Yeah. Also had a dream appliance in it.
Carly: I love a dream appliance. I love seeing the shot in the void. I love those. We’ve had two episodes of that now, which is great.
Riese: Whew. The sex scenes at the beginning, anyway, just a delight! Good job everybody on the team of The L Word. You all really shined, and we enjoyed your work.
Carly: Good job. Thank you all so much for listening. You can follow this podcast on Twitter and Instagram @ToLAndBack. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We also have a hotline (971) 217-6130. You can call and leave a message. We’ve got merch at store.autostraddle.com. Go check out the merch. It’s awesome. Our theme song is by Be Steadwell. Our logo is by Cara Sykes and this podcast is produced and edited by Lauren Klein. You can follow me @carlytron, you can follow Riese @autowin, and you can also follow Autostraddle @autostraddle and visit Autostraddle at autostraddle.com.
Riese: And you can contribute to our fundraiser at autostraddle.biz. Please just throw any type of money if you have any. I know a lot of people don’t. If you have any, you can just throw it out gently in our direction. We would appreciate it. Also, there are some To L And Back related perks in the store. So you should probably check those out and see what they are because maybe you would want to buy one. Just saying.
Carly: You might.
Riese: Check it out.
Carly: They’re pretty good.
Riese: They’re pretty good. Okay.
Carly: They’re pretty good.
Riese: Thanks for your everything.
Carly: Is it time for our L Words?
Riese: Uh-huh (affirmative). Every week I look at the same bookshelf looking for the same help, and I don’t find it.
Carly: I actually have mine for once. This is the first time this has ever happened.
Riese: I’m ready.
Carly: Okay. One, two, three: Liberty.
Riese: “Look out here they come.” That’s good, right? That was a good one.
Carly: I said liberty because in 10 minutes, I’m going to go watch my team, the LA Sparks play the New York Liberty. Because there’s a whole lot of WNBA that is being nationally televised right now. If you’re not watching it, you are missing out on some absolutely incredible basketball. And since they’re in their bubble and there’s no fans, and you can hear what everyone is saying all the time, which is really fun.
Riese: I might honestly do the same. And also just so you know, they put up these things so you’re not looking at an empty arena, if you have any fears of looking at an empty arena.
Carly: If that’s stopping you. They didn’t do the-
Riese: I was scared it was gonna look like it was just full of ghosts.
Carly: Oh, I wish. Well, in the NBA’s thing, they are in an existing basketball thing. And they installed all this technology that lets fans be on Zoom at home and then be in a seat in the stands. But for some reason they didn’t let the WNBA do that. But the cool thing about the WNBA is that they built several courts on a soundstage, which just as a filmmaker, I’m like, “That’s fucking cool. That’s really fucking cool.”
Riese: Wow. That’s so advanced.
Carly: I want to go to the bubble and film some shit because they built it [indecipherable] it’s just awesome. Everyone keeps getting injured. It’s not going great. All the top three picks in the draft all had ankle injuries right now. It’s great.
Riese: Oh, no. They should get Alice.
Carly: Yeah. They should, but are not going to.
Riese: Or Shay, just kidding. Remember Shay?
Riese: What happened to Papi?
Carly: I love that they give no explanation for Papi being gone.
Riese: Not a one.
Carly: She’s supposed to be Tasha’s best friend.
Riese: Yeah. They are just really determined, they are like, “We are NOT going to build Tasha’s character.” They’re just refusing.
Carly: We’ve taken away her friend, we’re trying to take away her job. We will stop at nothing to ruin this character’s life.
Riese: But at the end of the day, she’s really hot.
Carly: Yeah. She’s really unstoppable because of that.
Riese: Yeah. And you know what? All of you guys are also unstoppable.
Carly: Hell, yeah.
Riese: You should chase your dreams in a mask. And that’s all. We had a nice time.
Carly: Thank you for listening.
Riese: And we love you.
Carly: We will see you next week. Bye.
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