by Sarah Gardiner
On December 8th, the L Word is back with a whole new series and a fresh look at what queerness looks like 10 years on from the last season.
Like so many queer shows and media from the early 2000’s, the first L Word series had its issues. Rewatching it today can be a frustrating experience with the layers of subtle (and sometimes overt) bi and transphobia, moments of race and classism, and general language from the time.
The new series, Generation Q, is hopefully here to make up for some of those missteps and show how far we’ve come since the premiere nearly 20 years ago. Thankfully, the new lineup includes an asian trans character actually played by an asian trans actor and representation of the full spectrum of queer identities.
When the show first premiered, it was the first of its kind and a beacon of representation for a media starved community. For a lot of us, myself included, it was the first time I ever saw lesbians on tv, and my baby-gay mind was blown when the first sex scene popped up (a whole 5 minutes into the pilot). It may not have been perfect, but it was the only thing I had.
At a recent press junket, the new Show Runner, Marja-Lewis Ryan talked about the impact it had on her as a young, queer viewer. “The original [series] was the first wave of queer women I ever got to see on television. I was 19 when the show came out, so I came out alongside the show.”
“When we were on the air, gay marriage wasn’t even legal. Nobody was talking about non-binary identity. The whole conversation about identity was very different than what it is now. So, one of the things the show explores is how we talk about identity now, how we talk about sexuality now,” add Jennifer Beals—of course wearing a signature Bette Porter pantsuit.
Perhaps I’m just an optimist, or maybe I’m just starved for a new good queer obsession, but I have faith that this new generation will have all of the pantsuits, coffee hangs, girls in tight dresses who drag with mustaches talking, laughing, loving, fucking that we’ve always loved—this time just a bit more queer and a lot more diverse.
Fingers crossed. We all need a good new queer show to obsess over.
If you are in the Louisville area, Gayborhood Events will be hosting weekly watch parties for each episode. The first (on December 8th) will be held at Molly Mallone’s in the private back room.
With it being a queer show that will likely include sex scenes and sensitive topics, Gayborhood understands the need for a private viewing space. Because of that, the watch nights will be held throughout the entire season, but locations may change if any place does not feel private or safe enough. All updates will be posted on their social media.