The L Word: Episode 6 💍
"I told him you did P!nk's faux hawk for her bitter pill video and he fucking creamed."
Episode 6 is called “Lawfully.“ It starts off with another vignette, this time set in 1976. Two men are hooking up in the bathroom of a diner. The bigger man gruffly demands head. Afterwards, he shows his police badge and arrests the smaller man. It’s violent! Sex workers in 2022 still face entrapment and sexual assault from police, so I respect The L Word for going there.
Back in 2004, Tim and Jenny are brushing their teeth and making out in the bathroom. Tim picks her up like a sack of potatoes and she squeals and kicks her legs. I watched this episode 3 times to write about it and I hated this scene so much. It’s gross!! It seems like all the turmoil and guilt Jenny was feeling has dissipated. She’s happy to live with Tim and see Marina on the side.
Alice is stressed because her mom, Lenore, is crashing in her apartment. Lenore is a former soap opera actress and probably my favorite minor character. When Alice is busy making espresso, Lenore walks over to The Chart and adds her own name off of Shane. Apparently they made out after Bette and Tina’s pregnancy celebration. Alice is freaked out, since this means she’s in the same sexual orbit as her mom. I kind of assumed The Chart was a sex thing? This begs the question: do you get a connection on The Chart for making out? What if you go on one OkCupid date and she is so shy and awkward, it’s almost painful. Afterwards you go back to her place and she puts on a DVD of Platoon, makes herself an English muffin with peanut butter, and washes it down with a glass of cold milk and doesn’t offer you anything? When the movie ends, you take the bus home. The night is starless and dark. The air is beginning to feel like autumn. You realize that you just spent 5+ hours with someone who was not trying to be anything other than themselves. She did not act interested. She did not try to be funny. She barely noticed you were there. You look out the bus window and feel completely alone. Does that count? Is that good enough for The Chart?
Bette’s dad is in town. He’s a homophobe who loves accomplishment and ivy league universities. He hates alcoholics and gay people. Even so, Bette is desperate to impress him. She buys him a $300 tie and yells at Tina for trying to wear a sundress to dinner (none of her pants fit, she is literally pregnant and exhausted). The dinner is a total disaster. Bette’s father refuses to acknowledge their relationship and disavows the baby. Jeez. Bette and Jenny are next-level terrible. I wish there were more boring lesbians on this show. It would be more accurate.
Also, did you know that Pam Grier originally played a documentary filmmaker and leather butch named Captain and the chart was a tattoo on her back? And that the original name of The L Word was Earthlings? Special thanks to the Pam Grier episode of Celebrity Book Club for this information.
Meanwhile, Tim and the UCLA swimmers are headed to an important away game. He’s about to board the bus when he realizes that he left his lucky stop watch at home. Randy, the other coach, has lucky Garfield boxers. This dialogue!! You already know what’s about to happen. Tim enters the house he shares with his betrothed, one Jennifer Schecter. Marina is there. Tim stands in the doorway and watches Marina eat Jenny out. He’s too stunned to say anything, he just walks away.
It’s night now. Tim is standing outside a darkened natatorium. Jenny rushes up and starts pleading for forgiveness. She says that she and Marina only slept together once, and also she’ll die without him. She’s like, “I just want to be your wife.“ It’s a lot for a man with the name Tim.
Tim is taciturn and on the verge of a mental breakdown, but he lets Jenny get in his car. He takes her to The Planet and watches as she end things with Marina. Jenny is acting like an innocent little baby and batting her eyes a lot. She and Tim drive to Las Vegas, or somewhere where they do random, ill-advised weddings. They get married by a zany couple who own a 24-hour wedding chapel.
This was a big talking point in early 2000s marriage equality—straight people like Britney Spears and Jason Alexander could get married and divorced like nbd, but gay people were supposedly threatening the sanctity of marriage.
They check into a motel for the night. Jenny is trying so hard to have sex, but Tim is still freaked out from his brush with lesbian sex. He makes her take a shower and then fully rejects her. After she falls asleep, he leaves his engagement ring on the pillow and drives away. He gets pulled over by the blowjob cop from the beginning of the episode! The blowjob cop is now old. He asks why Tim is speeding. I confess that I watched this interaction 3+ times and did not understand it. Basically, Tim says that he got married and his new wife is a lesbian and that’s why he left her at the hotel and drove off. The cop says some weird shit about lesbian porn and how homosexuals are ruining America. Tim gets off scot free. Predictable.
Other Stuff That Came Up for Me:
I’m sorry, Shane shares a bedroom with 4 roommates?
“I drowned my demons but they learned to swim.“ —Jenny Schecter
lol @ Tim looking up the word “homosexual” in the dictionary, or maybe it’s the index of a Bible?
The funniest line in this episode comes from Shane’s friend, a twink who’s sleeping with a sleazy gay Hollywood producer: “I told him you did P!nk's faux hawk for her ‘Bitter Pill’ video and he fucking creamed.“ I forgot that The L Word likes to name drop P!nk and imply that she’s a lesbian. It’s so funny that they changed the song ”Just Like a Pill” to “Bitter Pill.” It’s like they’re teasing a guest appearance that never happens. Also, I just watched the music video in question and at no point does she have a faux hawk.
The L Word is obsessed with bathroom sex. The bathroom is not a sexy place for me, especially in the morning. Am I alone in this? Is the bathroom hot, or just steamy?
Quick Note, Please Read: This newsletter has grown a lot in the past month. I recently received several stanky messages in response to the paywall. I paywall posts because I’m a working class person and writing is real, time-consuming work. I simply couldn’t write T.V. Dinner without the support of paid subscribers.
When I recap a show, I usually paywall every other post. This way free subscribers don’t feel spammed and paid subscribers have an incentive to support the work (it’s literally five dollars!! the cost of a gas station sandwich or 1/3 of a nice cocktail). I didn't paywall the first few L Word recaps because they were circulating widely and it seemed worthwhile to keep that energy going. If you’re incensed that episode 5 costs money or you don’t want T.V. Dinner in your inbox anymore, don’t send me a hostile email. Just unsubscribe!! I don’t expect that everyone will see value in this newsletter, or stay for the long haul. That would be unrealistic.
Anyways, I just wanted to clarify that I’m not lighting my candles with $100 bills or paywalling things to be evil. It’s usually my policy to ignore weird messages because they’re such a minority. 99.9% of you are wonderful angels. Many of you do see value in this newsletter. I have no complaints. xo, Maddy