“The L Word” Recaps: Episode 6.07 “Last Couple Standing”


Style: What this episode favors over substance.
Lessons: Jenny’s new favorite L word, apparently.
Happy: What Alice wants Tasha to be. No matter how much it hurts.

THIS WEEK’S GUESTBIANS: Marlee Matlin shakes a tail feather; Alexandra Hedison apologizes; Roger Cross takes a stand; Kate French regresses Shane; Mei Melançon faces the music.

THREAT COUNT: Thus far in Season 6, six characters have threatened Jenny’s life: Niki, after Jenny made the “showmance” comment; Tina, when she thought Jenny had stolen the Lez Girls negative; Max, for Jenny’s unrelenting disrespect; Alice, because Jenny stole her idea for a film; Helena, because Jenny told Dylan about the surveillance; and Bette (this episode — read on).

Previously, on an imaginary episode — Did you catch that scene at the end of the “previously”? The one in which Tasha mentioned the dance marathon, and Bette offered to help, and Jamie encouraged everyone to “show up and dance”? Yeah, I’m pretty sure we never actually saw that. But without that setup, this episode would seem to come out of left field. Oh, wait — it seems like that anyway.

One more note before we begin: this recap may seem to have too many images, ratio-to-text-wise. But, well, this episode was very visual. It offered lots to look at and didn’t have much to say. So I’m helplessly following suit.

The dance marathon fund-raiser — At the Hit club, it’s time to boogie down to raise money for the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center. This dance marathon is brought to you by the defunct OurChart.com. Accordingly, this fund-raiser isn’t really raising anything but questions: Why don’t we actually get to donate? Why isn’t the phone number for the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center crawling across the bottom of the screen? Where’s the requisite PSA at the end of the episode, complete with black-clad Mama C. in a director’s chair? What is the bass-drum-thumping point of all this?

But let’s play pretend. The theme for the night is “Dance Through the Decades,” which apparently means that everyone should feel free to wear any costume whatsoever. Alice has organized this shindig, just like she promised Jamie she would, and she has brought her “A” game — or at least her “A” for attitude.

Alice: Tasha, Jamie and I are gonna wipe the floor with you. Our routine kills. Kills!
Bette: [dismissive] Oh.
Alice: Do you want to know what it is?
Bette: Not really.
Alice: Oh, I see. You’re trying to psych me out, acting like you don’t care. I know you care. Listen: you tell me yours, I’ll tell you mine.
Bette: Mmm … no.
Alice: [reaching for Bette’s bag] These your outfits?
Bette: Don’t touch that. [looking at Alice’s outfit] What, is that … is that all you got?
Alice: Oh, yeah — first of many. So many more to come.
Bette: Oh, good. ‘Cause I was worried.
Alice: [still wanting to see Bette’s outfits] What do they look like?
Bette: Oh, wouldn’t you like to know?
Alice: Why are you so competitive?
Bette: Me? What about you?

How adorable is Alice in her goofy getup? Her look is sort of Amy Winehouse meets Pee-Wee’s Playhouse.

I’d call that a Crayola shirt or a shrinky-dink shirt. I’d also call it hilarious when Alice asks Bette why she’s so competitive. Why is Bette so competitive? Really? Her?

That’s like asking why the sky is blue, or why Shane is so libidinous, or why sugar is sweet, or why snow is cold, or why music is melodious, or why staircases have steps, or why water is wet, or why math involves numbers, or why sunshine is bright, or why theater is live, or why the Hallmark Channel is sappy, or why photography is visual, or why doors allow egress, or why lesbians like women, or why Obama is hope, or why jalapeños are spicy, or why Angelina Jolie is a mother, or why words are linguistic, or why wheels are round, or why the recession is depressing, or why work is laborious, or why Meryl Streep is sublime, or why Manhattan real estate is expensive, or why locks have keys, or why lemons are sour, or why Chaiken is egomaniacal. In short, Q.E.D. or D.U.H.

Alice pulls Bette aside (like, two feet aside, which is obviously more private) to tell her that she is planning to win all three competitions: best dance, most money raised, last couple standing.

Bette: Last couple standing?
Alice: You know, for charity.

Not to be confused with “for eternity,” which is what Bette and Tina plan to be.