Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Rose is a Regan

Sometimes, as I’ve said many (many, many, many, may) times before, I can be slow. Sometimes, it takes five episodes before I realize the hot red-head in “Jane the Virgin” is the hot brunette from “Legend of the Seeker.” Now, in my defense, I never actually watched “Legend of the Seeker.” But, as a lesbian lady on the Internet, I have seen a gazillion fanvids and femslash gifs of the show for Bridget’s Kahlan and Tabrett Bethell’s Cara. So I feel like I know the really important bits already. (i.e. Hot ladies. Leather. Hair flipping. Swords. Gender-nonspecific kissing. Slow-mo everything. Etc.)

Still, I was slower than slow to realize that this person…

…is also this person:

This person…

…is also this person.


…is this.

And so…


I also just realized she was Rebecca in “White Collar.” What? Jesus, I would make a terrible eye witness. Change your hair color and I’m totally bamboozled.

Oh, and “Jane the Virgin” needs to get back to Luisa and Rose’s relationship STAT.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Serve and Protect

Here is what I believe. Police officers should be allowed to protect themselves and others with everything up to an including lethal force. Here is what I also believe. Police officers should use extreme caution and ultimate prudence in using lethal force. It should always be a last resort, always. Because there is no do over from dead.

I believe most police do just that, and risk their lives daily to uphold the law. But I also believe there are some who do not exercise nearly enough caution or prudence. And people who should not die do die because of that. And, again, there is no do over from dead.

Lethal force should not be used because an unarmed black teenager stole some Swisher Sweets. It should not be because an unarmed black teenager mouthed off to a cop. And it should not be because an unarmed black teenager grappled with that cop.

Should Mike Brown have done those things? No, probably not. But are those things are worth giving Mike Brown a death sentence? No, definitely not.

The question here is how and when and why lethal force is used. And the question is who gets the benefit of the doubt in this country. Is it an unarmed black teenager walking in the middle of the street? Is it the white sports fans setting shit on fire after they win a football game? Is it a bunch of white college students mad their favorite coach got fired? Or the white tea party militia dressed in combat gear with rifles pointed directly at federal law enforcement? There’s a theme here, if only I could put my finger on it.

People will point at the protesters and the small percentage with violent tendencies and say, see, this is what happens. See, this is why force is necessary. See, this is why they’re dangerous. They’ll use it as justification for their worst assumptions about people different than them. But what they don’t see is the reason. The anger, the hopelessness that is deeply embedded after enduring years, decades, centuries of assumptions made just like that. Does that excuse the lawlessness? No. But it puts it in context. Those scoffing at the reactions fail to see the chicken-and-egg conundrum in those stereotypes.

Reading Darren Wilson’s grand jury testimony about how he felt threatened – which I do not doubt he did – conjures up age-old racist tropes about thugs and brutes. He may not be aware he has them, but read his own words and they are there. I mean, at one point he even said, “it looks like a demon.” A demon. He also compared Mike Brown, who is 6’4, as much bigger than him like “Hulk Hogan.” Darren Wilson, it should be noted, is also 6’4. The question again is why, why he was so scared of this unarmed black teenager.

In the end I’m left with a deep sadness at the way we value lives, particularly those of minorities, in this country. An unarmed black teenager is dead, and no one will be held accountable for it. I hope all the reaction and protest and righteous anger about the grand jury decision in Ferguson leads to greatest understanding. That it will make us examine those assumptions and reevaluate what it takes to take a life. But my fear is that it will only continue to drive us further apart.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Off a Cliff

Trigger Warning: Sexual assault and rape culture discussion follows.

What do we value more than women’s [fill in the blank]? Sadly, in our culture the blank in question has far too many options. Opinions. Bodies. Lives. Of late, our cultural discourse has turned to what we value above women’s accusations in regards to rape. The catalyst for this discussion has been the resurfaced and renewed allegations of sexual assault by once revered comedy icon Bill Cosby.

No one needs any introduction of who Bill Cosby is. We named ugly sweaters after him and ate Jell-O because of him and felt a little better about race relations in 80s America because of him. He was Cliff Huxtable and everyone loved Cliff Huxtable.

But the man is always so much more complex than the myth. At this point, I’ve honestly lost track of the number of women who have come forward to share their all-too similar stories of unwanted sexual encounters with this man. Yet we clung to the myth until their chorus of accusations became an impossible-to-ignore din.

For decades, his positive public persona was more important than the women who dare to crack its highly polished veneer with the truth.

I’ve mused over the difference between the art and the artist more times than I wish I had to here in the past. Powerful men getting a pass on past misdeeds against women is a sad theme in our society. Roman Polanski. Woody Allen. Terry Richardson.

These men all still have careers and work with respected colleagues and companies because we choose to believe their reputations over women’s voices.

The he/said (or whatever configuration) of sexual assault is almost always weighed against the victim. The shame and the disbelief are the burdens the victim alone must carry. What was she wearing? What did she do? Why didn’t she go to police? The question is almost always why she didn’t do something. It is very rarely why didn’t he not rape her.

It’s the strangest thing, how we think about rape accusations. If I walked out of a building declaring I was robbed, people would gasp and help me call the cops. But if I walk about of a building and declared I was raped, well, is there proof? Were charges filed? Was he convicted? Did he go to jail?

As such, the evolution of public perception of Bill Cosby has been grimly fascinating to watch. The truth is these rape allegations are nothing new. They’ve been around for decades. But until the last few weeks, they’ve only been badgering whispers around the dark edges of what everyone assumed was a great man. They never took hold because of who was accusing him. A bunch of unknown women? Pshaw.

No, we didn’t pay attention until a male comic, Hannibal Buress, dared to utter the allegations out loud. And a clip of his talking about Cosby’s rape accusations went viral. Oh, wait, now a man said it? Hold on. And then, things went even farther still after a famous woman, Janice Dickinson, added her accusation into the chorus. Well, OK, this is a female celebrity – guess we can’t blow her off like the others. Netflix hold his comedy special. NBC cancels his show. TV Land pulls his reruns.

The simple fact is one woman’s voice was not enough. Nor were two. Nor were three. Nor were fourteen.

But what we have to ask ourselves, what we must change, is why. Why wasn’t it enough? Because we value so many other things – fame, entitlement, power, respect, male voices – more than women’s accusations. And until that changes the Woody and Roman and Terry and Bills of the world will keep getting away with it.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Good Cat

Isn’t it good when good projects go to good people? It’s just so…good. Out comic book artist Cat Staggs has been doing good work for a good long time now. Overuse of the word good? Shhhh, I’ve only just begun. She is currently an artist for DC Comics, and has created really good covers for everything from Smallville to Vampire Diaries and Star Wars titles. But now, in even more good news, she is doing to cover art for a new series of “Orphan Black” comics. Yes, ORPHAN BLACK COMICS.

She did all eight covers for Orphan Black Issue #1. Three of the eight have been released and, guys, they’re so good.

[Click to embiggen]

Speaking of good things, did you catch Cat and her wife Amanda Deibert in that Target ad? Ack, so much good it’s making my face hurt from the smiling.

Awwww. Good, right?

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Throwing It All Away

Still not over this preview. Not even a little bit. I could watch Dr. Lauren Lewis hurl that throwing star on an infinite loop. In fact, I think I will.

p.s. For a more verbose breakdown of the first full preview for Season 5, check out my post from AfterEllen this week.

p.p.s. I think the fact that they show Dyson/Bo action, but no Doccubus action is actually a good thing. Bait and switch, amirite? Or, you know, wishful thinking.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Falling Hard

Oh, show. What are you doing to us, show? Remember wayyyy back this summer when that little rumor that Gillian Anderson’s DSI Gibson and Archie Panjabi’s Dr. Reed Smith would have a “sexual encounter” on the new season of “The Fall.” Then the good doctor checks out Stella’s nail length in the premiere, a clear sign of lesbian flirting. And now this new promo image from episode 3 has set those rumors on fire. As in, oh hey look, there’s a fire in my pants. Gosh, those two look awfully cozy. Someone tell me their shipper name immediately, if not sooner.

This cheeky reply from Gillian about the possibility of Stella’s bisexuality doesn’t hurt either.

Right, sorry, regain composure. Act like an adult. Be professional. They’re probably just discussing very serious and important police-related matters. In each other’s pants.

Whoops, sorry. Slipped up again. On a related note, I’d like it ever so much if you took the time to check out my recaps of “The Fall” over at AfterEllen. The first one posted yesterday and you can expect them Mondays throughout the season. I know, I know – tough gig staring at Gillian Anderson’s face for hours on end.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Ask a Lesbian

It’s Monday. Sorry about that, that bit is outside of my control. What I can control is how you start your Monday. I think a lesbian answering questions from straight folks is a great way to start. Especially if those answers are equal parts funny and true. Please enjoy Cameron Esposito’s Ask a Lesbian series for Buzzfeed.

p.s. She is not wrong about the side mullet thing. Or vests. 

p.p.s. Not that I have a side mullet. Just that it reads Tegan & Sara-level gay.

Friday, November 14, 2014

My Weekend Crush

The most extraordinary thing about the Jane of “Jane the Virgin” isn’t that she is a virgin. Sure, her chasteness is the gimmick that gets us into the irony of her pregnancy. But the real thing that makes Jane unique is her honesty. Jane is the most honest character on television right now. And much of the humor and complications come not from lies – like on so many other shows – but from simply telling the truth. It’s a neat trick for a show that is essentially a very smart take on a telenovela.

Much of the show’s greatness also comes from Gina Rodriguez’s portrayal of Jane. She is earnest and charming and empathetic and goofy. She feels like a real girl you’d meet and probably like. Except, again, she is probably more honest and open than most. None of it would work if Gina wasn’t so darn likeable. But she is, she really is.

Not to say there isn’t a healthy dose of scheming and backstabbing in “Jane the Virgin.” But the various scrapes and predicaments Jane gets into are because of the less than honest actions of others. Speaking of, have I mentioned that there’s a hot lesbian affair on this show? Really, you should be watching this show. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Falling for the Girl

*Siren Blares* *Lights Flash* Sorry, I get a little excited sometimes when my gaydar gets pinged. Too much? NEVER ENOUGH. In the course of researching the new season of the BBC Two series “The Fall” (starting today in the UK, lucky UK), I came across the new character PC Hagstrom played by Irish actress Kelly Gough. I don’t want to tell you your business, but, yeah. Siren, lights, PING.

Now comes the disclaimer where I tell you I have absolutely no idea whether this new police constable character is a lesbian or now. But her folded arms, slicked hair, hands in belt, general aura all reads G-A-Y. My most sincere hope is that this new PC Hagstrom is a love interest for Niamh McGrady’s returning character PC Ferrington. Her adorable ginger constable needs some loving.

If you’re looking for a less flaily preview of the new season, please check out AfterEllen later today. Needless to say, I’m pretty excited. Not just because of femslash I’ve made up based on two promo photos, but also because this series is very good and very smart. Even though it’s about a man who kills women, it’s also about women navigating (and kicking ass) in a male-dominated world.

And there isn’t an actress working today who is aging more exquisitely than Gillian Anderson. I mean it, I think the aliens did take her because there’s no other reason she should be even more talented and more beautiful with each passing year.

p.s. I will be recapping this season of “The Fall” over at AfterEllen as well. Such hard work screencapping Gillian. Much toil.