“The L Word” Recaps: Episode 5.12 “Loyal and True”


Peccadilloes: A vulnerability for everyone, especially Shane.
Convictions: Sometimes confused with convenience.
Art: Humiliating, when it imitates life.

THIS WEEK’S GUESTBIANS: Malaya Rivera Drew breathes fire; Jane Lynch chews; Holland Taylor uses big words; Alicia Leigh Willis becomes a real girl; Melanie Lynskey offers perspective and temptation; Cybill Shepherd preaches; Wallace Shawn makes a toast.

Big wallets, tiny brains — Adele, Tina and Aaron are meeting with some guys who are interested in distributing Lez Girls. They think the film is great, and they have the feminine hygiene commercial contracts to prove it.

Tina: We think the film needs a platform release. We think this is a film that needs to find its audience.
Smarmy sideburned guy: Well, we don’t think of it as a niche movie.
Tina: Neither do we. We want everyone in America to see it.

Hooray, they’re all in agreement! Except for one thing: The distributor dudes don’t like the ending.

Smarmy dude: Marketing says it won’t test.
Tina: What do you mean, it won’t test? Test with who?
Smarmy dude: Peoria. You know, the flyover states. Nebraska, Florida, Orange County. I mean, it won’t test. Like, lesbians are cool and sexy now …
Other distributor dude: But, uh, we need them to be relatable.

Yeah? Here’s one tip: Don’t kill off the Donna character. She’s the most relatable one.

The distributor dudes are mostly looking at Aaron (Tina’s boss) as they talk, rather than at Tina and Adele. Isn’t that always the way? And they’re especially Aaron-focused as they drop this next bomb — a stink bomb, to be precise:

Smarmy dude: We think Jesse should go back to her boyfriend in the end.
Tina: What?! No way.

Sigh. I have a better idea: Cast the smarmy guy in the movie, and Jesse can shoot him in the end. Er, at the end. Actually, “in” makes sense too.

Nobody walks in L.A. — Hey, they actually filmed this episode in Los Angeles! You can tell by the palm trees and the haze and the traffic that Tina and Bette and Angie are currently stuck in. Tina points out that her house is closer to Angie’s preschool. As they discuss the merits of their respective neighborhoods, Angie focuses on the matter at hand:

Angelica: Are you gonna honk the horn?

Was that the cutest thing you’ve ever heard, or what? It just gets cuter as Angie continues to chatter while her moms talk. (For the record, they both say no, they’re not going to honk the horn.)

Bette: Are you saying I should sell my house?
Tina: I didn’t say that!
Bette: I know, I just meant if … we … got together … I mean, once we … decide … [sighing, giving up]

I love Tina’s expressions during this exchange. When Bette first says the thing about selling the house, Mama T seems to want to say, “Simmah down nah!”

And then while Bette flounders, Tina seems quite amused.

More important, she doesn’t try to finish Bette’s thoughts for her or throw her any kind of relationship-shaped life preserver. And that’s the difference between New Tina and Old Tina. And New Tina rocks.

The conversation turns to Bette’s speech for Jodi’s big event at the Hammer. The speech includes a bit about Jodi being “undeniably a woman,” and that brings us yet another great expression from Tina.

Tina says it “sounds a little bit sexist,” but she doesn’t really argue when Bette defends herself. Tina pretends to be unconcerned because Bette is a “great writer,” but I think she mostly just doesn’t care. But she does want to know whether Bette has talked to Jodi. Bette hasn’t, but she did speak to the curator of the show.

Bette: She said Jodi’s piece is amazing.
Angelica: Jodi.


Tina: [shrugging] You have to find a way to have Jodi in her life. They’re very bonded.
Bette: I just … I think it would be just too confusing. I mean, it just blurs the boundaries, and it’s …

Whose boundaries? Confusing for whom? Don’t use your daughter as an excuse for the vagaries of your own heart, Bette.

Bette is saved by the bell, or rather, the bus that’s crossing in front of them and sporting an ad for The Look. There’s 2-D Alice, looking glamorous. Tina tries to point her out to Angelica, but Angie is unimpressed. She’s probably confused by the blurred boundaries between real life and meta life.

While the bus is lingering in their path, the stoplight turns green. So Bette honks the horn and says, “Go, a–hole.” So much for not honking the horn and keeping Angie’s best interests in mind!