But for those poor souls like me whose sanity is already long gone, please join me as we talk about all the latest “L Word” spoilers that splatted all over The Internets over Thanksgiving weekend. [Big ups to TWoP Forum and SaabStory!] So, in case I haven't made myself clear enough, STOP READING IMMEDIATELY IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO BE SPOILED FOR SEASON 6! This is your last chance. I am in no way kidding and will not be held responsible for what follow. Abandon all hope ye who enter here.
So, here is the thing...hey, you! I see you hiding in the corner. Get outta here. It's for your own good, trust me... Are they all gone now? Good. Let us begin at the beginning.
As nice as it is to see Lucy Lawless pull up to the gayborhood, it's disconcerting to see that the show about hot women kissing has turned into an episode of “Lesbian & Order.” And it's even more disconcerting when we find out who is in the pool. Because Ilene Chaiken has gone and done it. You thought, perhaps, that even she didn't have a big enough ego to end her series with not only a death but The Death. But, you clearly thought wrong. Yep, Ilene killed Jenny.
So, the great Lesbian Clue games begins (and presumably ends) with Jenny floating in the swimming pool. Um, Ilene. Yeah, hi. “Sunset Boulevard” called, and it wants its plot back. As my friend the brilliant (and returning, woo to the hoo!) TLW recapper Scribegrrrl pointed out, last season was Ilene's “All About Eve” moment. Now this season Ilene seems to be telling Mr. DeMille that she is ready for her close-up. A Hollywood writer is found floating in a pool and the rest of the story is told in flashback. Where is Norma Desmond when you need her?
The Death of Jenny (heretofore to be known as DOJ, since the irony of this act sharing an acronym with the Department of Justice or anything related to justice is just...rich), will surely be cheered by some. I mean, Jenny is crazy. Like coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs, full-tilt boogie, do not pass go do not collect $200 crazy. But, the thing is, Mia Kirshner somehow managed to pull it off. For all of Jenny's megalomania, destructiveness and bat guano mainlining, you always hoped that she could be redeemed. After all, the series has been, in large part, about Jenny's journey. She is the one who came to
Vancouver L.A. She is the one who realized she was gay. She is the artist in search of herself.
So, as loyal followers, we hoped that her journey would take us somewhere. I don't kid myself to think that TLW is much more than a sexy, stylized and sometimes sensationally acted soap opera. But instead of rewarding our loyalty, Ilene has chosen to kick us for our stupidity. Did she really think she was going to sneak the oldest lesbian story in the book past us? You know the one. You've seen it your entire life. It's the sad doomed lesbian. (For reference please see “The Children's Hour,” “Lost and Delirious,” all the very special episodes of a crime procedurals during sweeps month).
Come on, Ilene. The best you could do was to Sylvia Plath your lead character? Just stick her head in an oven and be done with it. We get it. This is your show. This is your character. This is your prerogative. All of this is true. But that you chose to take all your creative energy and pour it into this? Whether by murder, suicide or accidental flotation device malfunction, I can't help but feel cheated.
While I don't think that artists owe their audiences anything more than the art itself, I do think that art must be authentic. It needs to mean something. And it certainly needs to mean something more than the hubris it takes to kill a character just because you can. I mean, what are we meant to take away from Jenny's life and death? If you had told me from the start that this would just be a giant LOLlesbian I could have saved a lot of time these past five years.
I've largely stayed away the rest of the spoilers (yes, yes, I know about Shenny), not because I don't care but because the DOJ has left me adrift like Gatsby in that pool (hey, if Ilene can steal so can I). But this isn't a commentary on the empty materialism and easy immorality at work beneath the glamor of the rich. Nor is it an ink-black comedic dismantling of the Hollywood myth. This is Jenny fucking Schecter. The only thing that would be worse is if Ilene ended it all as a dream. God, she wouldn't, right?
So, have at it kittens. Are you ready to scratch your own eyes out? Are you ready to scratch Ilene's eyes out? Are you just trying to scratch your way out of of this box and into freedom? Don't worry, Ilene. You are big. It's just the lesbians that got small.