‘The L Word Generation Q’ S2E2 Recap: “Like a sweet feral cat”
By: Jess Ison
This article contains spoilers for The L Word Generation Q. It is recommended that you watch the show before reading.
Welcome to my weekly review of Season 2 of The L Word Generation Q. Each week, I’ll go over the characters’ narrative arcs and pick out sections that suit my agenda. I’m not sorry to say that these will all be thinly veiled pro-communist rants.
You can read my thoughts on Season 1 and its central plot points, and my recap of episode one if you need a refresher.
Image by Vladimir Sukhachev
Season 2, Episode 2: Lean On Me
Ok, I know we’re only up to episode two, but so far my overall feeling is that things are hard to follow and the tension is lacklustre.
I already can’t say exactly why I’m still watching. I suspect it’s out of some loyalty to baby-dyke me, who was obsessed with the show and aspired to wearing well-tailored suits.
So, let’s get Sophie and Dani out of the way.
They fight at the wedding. Dani says she’ll never forgive Sophie. She yells at Micah for his betrayal and then punches Finley, all while in that – IMO, hideous – dress. Then there’s lots of sad scenes where they all cry. Finley is also caught up in the drama.
Sorry, I just can’t bring myself to write about any more wedding stuff.
Though I will say, Sophie telling Dani she loves her and the next minute telling Finley to stay? That had to be some of the truest representation of dyke drama that we’ve seen in a while.
And, as my mate said, there were some very good “emotional vomiting while running scenes” with Dani. Remember how Alice and Dana used to run together? So many emotions.
Despite the yelling scene, we’ve still had hardly anything from Micah. Although Maribel, Sophie’s sister, is starting to get more airtime. It’d be cool if she became one of the central characters.
That’s about it for the new Gen Q friendship group, so let’s hope that they start to have some more interesting stories.
Like, soon please! As I write this, the original theme song is in my head.
“This is the way we liiiiiiiive and looooove.”
Hope now it’s in yours, suckers!
Onto the original cast.
Shane is now having a poker night at Dana’s.
Did I miss something? Why is she having a poker night?
I really have no idea what it’s about, but I do know that glamourising gambling and drinking is rubbish. All of these extremely rich and fancy people sitting around with cocktails and gambling their money is a far cry from the harsh realities of gambling and drinking for most people.
And look, I get that this is meant to be a TV show that has silly plotlines and some light entertainment. You might be reading this thinking, “Simmer down, mate.” But gambling and alcohol ruin people’s lives, and they’re often marketed to queer people in really predatory ways.
Alcohol and gambling companies splash our flag on their products, trying to sell us our own liberation. Watching this show do it too is really disappointing.
And it’s framed as a way for Shane to fix her finances. Maybe she should take fewer private jets?
It seems like this poker night is now a central plotline of the show, so I imagine you will hear this rant from me at another point.
Also, speaking of Shane, I’m devastated that they’re going to pair her up with Tess. Maybe it will turn out ok… But I have some serious concerns.
Shane is her boss! Shane fucked her girlfriend! Also, can we have a story about Shane that isn’t about getting a girlfriend?
More importantly, I love Tess. I think she’s one of the most real, and coolest characters on the show.
Now she’s being all sweet and cutesy with Shane, and I do not buy it. Particularly that line “You’re like a sweet feral cat”.
Finley is now also working at Shane’s because she lost her job with Alice.
For the whole episode, she’s moping about and taking no responsibility. At one point she’s sitting with Shane and Tess, asking for advice about Sophie, and Tess replies, “We tend to get stuck in certain patterns until we meet the person we are meant to be with. And then when you do, you can end the cycle.”
This is so rubbish.
I really hate how they’re depicting Finley’s issues as being some flaw because she cannot hold down a girlfriend. Her issue is she needs some fucking therapy.
There’s nothing wrong with Finley wanting a monogamous relationship, but there is a whole lot wrong with her seeking that to deal with her personal issues.
Plus, Tess is better than this.
Moving on, things are weird between Alice and Nat.
At one point, Alice tries to look through Nat’s phone for answers as to why Nat’s being distant.
Do people actually do this? It’s terrible behaviour.
Nat wakes up before Alice can look at her phone, but Alice later admits to Nat that she was trying to. When she does, it’s in a kind of manipulative way that’s intended to make Nat tell her what’s going on.
These people also need to go see a therapist to discuss how to communicate in a way that isn’t problematic.
Nat finally shares what’s up and – wait for this – she “comes out” as polyamorous.
I mean… For starters, the writing has really taken a turn for the worse, so for a while it was kind of unclear what the hell was happening in this scene. But on top of that, I was laughing too hard to catch most of the dialogue.
Nat makes a comparison between her being polyamorous and Alice being bisexual. That was just… No, Nat. No.
Even though Nat “can’t help it”, Alice is appalled at Nat being polyamorous.
This is so unfair to Alice’s character. From the show’s start, Alice has always been willing to try different things. She’s had some real desires to live life differently (albeit with her wealth as a buffer). Alice rejecting polyamory just doesn’t fit with her character at all.
That said, I’m absolutely dreading what’s going to come next with this storyline. A wealthy white cis woman exploring being polyamorous? Dreading it.
Though I hope that if Nat does start reading any literature on polyamory (please do not read The Ethical Slut, Nat) she shares it with basically every other character on this show. Clearly monogamy doesn’t suit any of them.
Speaking of monogamy, damn, Bette was being so judgy of Sophie while they all sat around playing poker!
Bette, you cheated on Tina. With that super-hot carpenter. (I would still like to forget the sex scene you had in the jail after the protest at the gallery. That was… uncomfortable.)
Bette has a few other things going on in this ep. She’s started her new job, and is struggling to deal with the racist art world. She’s also been supporting Dani, which is a shift from the flirtation they had last season.
And she’s seeing Gigi on the reg. This resulted in the episodes only sex scene, which had some extremely hot moments, like how they were kind of wrestling a bit.
Don’t judge me.
You know, historically, The L Word has had some pretty good sex scenes. Including some pretty hot ones with Bette.
However, even though I’m frothing Bette and Gigi, I have to admit that I didn’t think this sex scene was good overall. It just felt too much like they were “being sexy” in a way that was performed for the straights.
It seems as though people who make shows about lesbians are obsessed with both women having long hair. I’m not saying queer women don’t – I have long hair – I’m just saying I’ve seen a lot of sex scenes like this one where two women sweep the long hair out of each other’s eyes and giggle.
Another trope in lesbian sex scenes like these is featuring water. The L Word has done that a lot. Remember when they put that echo in the background, “Wet, wet, wet, wet”?
The scene with Bette and Gigi also followed this trend. You might not have noticed it, but I have a keen eye for any signs of water in lesbian sex scenes. If you didn’t, go back, watch this scene again, and take note of when it cuts away to show a shot of a fountain. I’m serious!
Unfortunately, there was no Tina, Angie, Jordi, or Carrie this episode. I’m still super keen to know how Angie and Jordi are getting along. My teenage self is so happy for them.
What’s to come in episode three?
Hard to tell, but so far there’s been a lot of talking, laughing, loving, breathing, fighting, fucking, crying, drinking… you know the rest.
Jess Ison is an aficionado of queer media and loves every bad lesbian film ever made. In her professional life she is a researcher at La Trobe University. She lives with her dog on Wurundjeri land. Find her on Twitter.