Monday, March 09, 2009

Post-L Mortem

We don't know who killed Jenny. We don't know if Jenny was killed. We don't even know how Jenny died. We don't know if Alice and Tasha will stay together. We don't know what happens with Max's baby. We don't know if Bette and Tina move to New York. We don't know if Shane ever confronted Jenny. We don't know why Niki was hiding in the bushes. We don't know if Kit ended up believing Bette. We don't know if Kelly really did tell people they slept together. We don't know why Dylan was reintroduced only to have Helena break-up with her about yet more trust issues. We don't know why everyone would be homicidally angry at Jenny one minute and the next be happily be chomping popcorn and watching her epic three-hour tribute video. We don't know why they were all creepily smiling as they skipped into the police station. Finally, we don't know what is to become of poor Sounder.

Uncertainty is one thing. The complete inability to finish a single storyline is another.

Despite the actresses' best efforts and many of the characters' genuine likability, the hallmark of “The L Word” over its six seasons has been missed opportunities and inconsistent storytelling. All of that was punctuated by the finale, which – to use a technical term – blew. It's not just that there were a million loose ends, but that the end did not justify the means. Why frame the entire last season as a murder mystery only to leave it stubbornly unsolved? Why end the first and only dramatic series about lesbians in death, period? The thing is, all these sins would have been forgiven had the finale approached anything close to being good. But, alas, it was not. Not even close.

It was so bad, that the only way to deal with the disappointment is robust and unrelenting mocking. To speed along the process I've started the “That finale was so bad that...” game. Here is mine: “That finale was so bad that the letter L refuses to be associated with it anymore and it is now just called The Word.”

A sampling of the responses so far. That finale was so bad...

  • @helenahandbskt ...that I'm gonna need some ice cream now bad.
  • @livlab ...that I almost wanted more Jenny. No wait, I take that back.
  • @lindbrownsay ...that even Chaiken winced.
  • @hobojen ...that upon reading the script the FacialHairTech refused to participate& Ilene made Daniela glue a caterpillar to her face.
  • @thelinster ...that Leisha has changed the name from Uh huh Her to No Not Me.
  • @NoTORIousTori ...that to say it was even pretty good is like saying Saw was a romantic comedy.
  • @carolinagrrrl ...that Beals is considering donning a black leotard and dancing to 80s music so people will forget her career since then.
  • @scfox ...that I refuse to acknowledge anyone named Ilene. (And don't get me started on the webisodes!)
  • @natthedem ...that Katy Perry is now calling Ilene Chaiken to help her write lyrics for her next album.
  • @ElphabaPotter ... that I find myself crushing on Lisa, the ManLesbian.
  • @Justjesh ...that it beats the Growing Pains finale.
  • @thusspokejenny ...that I didn't even really die, I just changed my dress. Try and kill me, bitches.
  • @femmedomestic ...that it made miss the manatees and sweet meats. Oh.. And Kit's menopause anthem.
  • @TruMischief ...that the best line was “we saw an old giraffe with a goiter on it's neck.”
  • @Virgotex ...that even straight men remained un-titillated.
  • @tex2009 ...that it's turning lesbians straight.
  • @uhhliana ...that even the awful Betty theme song refused to be associated with it.
  • @arreola ...that i could hear the collective WTFs from lesbians around the world.
  • @julieoh ...that they're going to use it to torture prisoners in Guantanamo.
  • @frannynotzooey ...that Jenny died just to get away from it.
  • @teacherc ...that Rachel Maddow will need to be "talked down" on her show tomorrow night.
  • @whenfishfly ...that even Betty wanted their song out of the episode.
  • @neonumbra ...that I was scared straight. This is not how I want my life to be!
  • @belismakr ...that I wished I'd watched a rerun of America's Next Top Model instead.
  • @DaneWrights ...that Lucy Lawless told Ilene to reduce her screen time in editing or she'd go all Xena on her ass.
  • @stonermc ...that the Mormon Church sympathised and repealed Prop 8!
  • @mariequinn ...that it made Max's facial hair look good.
  • @mama_ti ...that we just had to take @call_me_max's baby and run -- and he's ADORABLE! Angie loves him!
  • @manshorts ...that EZTV took forever to post the torrent in order to postpone the disappointment I am sure to experience.
  • @laurachen ...that two of my friends just went back into the closet.
  • @sarahwarn ...that it makes me question my future as a Professional Lesbian - are our best days behind us?

So, come on ladies (and discerning gentlemen), bring the snark either @dorothysnarker on Twitter or in the comments below. Let's give this turkey the send-off it deserves.

81 comments:

;)) babs said...

the two things I will miss most are your "Pre-Ls" and scribegrrrl's recaps on AE.

they were always better than the real thing.

thank you, ladies!


;) babs

Anonymous said...

You know what? I can't snark. I will miss it anyway.

Syd said...

so bad, that calling it the L Turd for six years has now been justified.

Anonymous said...

so bad my mind has invented a dallas like escape scene in which the last season was just an elaborate dream sequence...

so bad i am considering doing a jenny and stealing the last reels

BUT NEVER SO BAD that i'm not still massively grateful that this show was ever made and that the amazing cast somehow pulled off every storyline they were given.

;)) babs said...

and there was definitely not enough carmen in the bloody finale!

Anonymous said...

i mean...wtf, right?! and i really thought they would at least introduce "the farm" at the end! ugh!

Anonymous said...

that finale was so bad that i had to under-go several ECT treatments to wipe out my memory and then amputate my own eyeballs so that no matter how tempted i may be in the future, it will be physically impossible for me to ever subject myself to that kind of torture again.

okay, maybe a bit harsh, but still, after 6 years, showtime owed us more than that. it was insulting. i know chaiken has some delusion about getting a movie, but if the finale (and previous seasons) sucked that bad, i can only imagine what she would do to butcher the movie.

nevertheless, i will still miss it because there is nothing else even close to it on tv right now. and i guess i can't really complain because it's my own fault because i didn't stop watching.

thanks for the pre-Ls, they were always great!

Anonymous said...

So bad, I called Showtime and demanded my money back.

Anonymous said...

It was awful, all this season has been a big wtf!?
btw, have you seen the webisode of Tina...that is creepy!
sorry for my english :P

Anna said...

so bad that the Grey's producers are in talks with Ilene to helm their last season. Ghost-sex is only the beginning.

Norma Desmond said...

so bad that it made going over and giving Ilene hell in front of all her friends not worth it.

so bad that I actually hope Bette killed Jenny.

so bad that I actually wish Jenny had lived; her crazy circus dreams were WAY better than the finale.

so bad it made the economy look good.

but, mostly, so bad that I'm just relieved it's all over.

ekgfrompdx said...

... so bad that the best story line was the straight one with Kit and Sunset Boulevard...

Anna said...

so bad that even with twenty-seven takes and a team of professional editors, they couldn't finish the last scene straight-faced.

so bad that sounder's worried little cries as he walks around the pool were the most resonant lines spoken in the entire episode.

so bad that even in our current dearth of lesbian-themed television, nothing under the sun could possible compel me to watch "the Farm" now, not even Leisha Hailey.

oh. my. god. so bad.

Erin G. said...

the finale was so bad...that Erin Daniels was cheering!

Anonymous said...

...that I am going to pretend that Season 5 was the end of The L Word.

billie_blaikie said...

..so bad that i can't even listen to uh huh her anymore.

Megan said...

So, I actually didn't hate the finale and I feel like I'm the only one. I believe I didn't hate it, and actually might of liked it for various reasons. 1) I didn't watch the finale live and all of the talk/reviews leading up to the time I did watch the episode made me expectations of what was going to happen incredibly low. I preparing to fall asleep, shove bamboo underneath fingernails, turn it off half way through. I was expecting crap, and because I set myself up for much worse, the finale episode, for me, was completely tolerable.

Part of me also is okay with all the questions left unanswered because it allows us as an audience to discuss what we think will happen, etc.

Also, I came to terms with Jenny kicking the bucket so long that I talked myself into how it made sense. We began season 1 with Jenny peering through the fence to Bette and Tina's house. Jenny allowed us into the lives of the characters of the L Word, so isn't it fitting that our knowledge of these characters also ends with her?

At least, that's what I'll keep telling myself.

Anonymous said...

so bad that that instead of using TLW as abbreviation my fingers automatically type WTF

Arianna said...

Why so much hating on The L Word, guys? Maybe the finale wasn't that great, but the show brought so much to my life. You all obviously wouldn't have followed it religiously for 6 seasons if you disliked it that much!
Was I the only teary-eyed one in the pre-finale special??

Anonymous said...

No, you weren't the only teary-eyed one.

Anonymous said...

The finale was so bad that I wish I had never started watching the show six years ago.

skrailly said...

okay, so this is what we're going to do. Dorothy and Scribe are going to keep writing about the L word as if it never left, only write is as it should be written. Season 7 coming soon! best fanfic ever.

Anonymous said...

Just so sad.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I think that was probably one of the worst finales I could have imagined. Of all the possibilities, this is the best that this talented group of writers could come up with? Hmmm! What REALLY pushed me over the edge was the interrogation webisode over at:
http://www.sho.com/site/lword/interrogation.do?source=m_tlw6_m_home_march09_interr

What a steaming heap of excrement! LuH really proves her acting ability has been sorely underrated over the years, but come on Ilene, incest! What the fuck are you smoking in your pipe, cause it is way past it's expiry date!

Jennifer said...

Umm, yea I just watched that tape over at sho.com. Kind of.... disturbing. WTF is Ilene thinking?

Jennifer said...

Before the season started, there was talk about finally revealing Tina's past and family life. Is that how Ilene wanted to reveal Tina's past? Not even in an episode? In an effin interrogation tape AFTER the finale? Lame.

Anonymous said...

I'd bet the reason Tina's family background was not included in the episode is probably because it tested out poorly with the pre-screeners. I'm sure they had the same response we all did, and so it was not included. Instead of IC changing it and giving Tina some credible family history, IC got her way by sneakily adding it in as an extra, and no doubt it will be a DVD extra too. I really hate the way she has treated the character of Tina, it's almost as if she resents the characters popularity. Who knows, only IC knows what is going in the convoluted mind of hers.

Anonymous said...

so bad, I find myself weeping for all the wrong that was done to these fictitious characters.

ronni said...

oops, just realized you may not have received my tweet since my updates are private. so here's mine :)

"the L word finale was so bad, leisha hailey dyed her hair to avoid being recognized in public."

GREAT BLOG BTW :D

Anonymous said...

The final is so bad, that I wish I never kissed the girl. That way I wouldn't be watching this show right now.

RHEA said...

"Why end the first and only dramatic series about lesbians in death, period?"

THANK YOU!

Gaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!

araparatus said...

The end of L Word was so bad I don't even know if I'm actually a lesbian anymore.

slacker said...

What was up with the freaky smiling at the end? Just glad to be out of the crazy or not?

Thanks for helping us through season snark.

delurk said...

Have you watched the interrogation "tape" yet - just one so far (Tina). It is ludicrous.

Anonymous said...

..That I had to play tetris straight after so I wouldn't have Post-Traumatic Stress disorder

Anonymous said...

My expectation were on the floor so, it wasn't nearly as bad as the s3 final, nor as bad as I expected it to be.

6 years of WTF's, no character growth, unfinished stories on every turn, lousy writing, lousy dialog, why would the series finale be any different??

I'm a Tibetter so I'm pretty ok with it. I loved the final love scene between Bette and Tina, I loved that their OK.

I have to Admit Bette walking in that final scene in that f*king power suit, with that open neck white shirt wiped out any left over angst's toward the, poorly written, presented, lousy no story, endless WTF's of s6.

Yep I'm shallow, and I intend to watch that over and over - just because it makes me smile.

Jennifer Beals you still have "IT" babe. yummy

Barbara said...

I actually liked two things. The actual end, Jenny saying "that's it" in a very simple and unpretentious way. It seemed a fitting, no drama end as opposed to the absurd death plot that had to launch the Farm (why so titled anyway??!?!)

The second thing I liked was the final walk, which was actually divided in two parts: the first was the sad "to the police station" walk; and the second the "TLW is over" walk, goodbye everybody, that's a wrap, a sort of final bow to the audience, it was good to do the show for you for the last six years, etc.

I'm not making further negative remarks (which I should) because everyone has already made enough of them so I don't want to be redudant.

eb said...

So bad that George Bush finally changed his last name.

Anonymous said...

... so bad that even my therapist is now in therapy !

;)

Keeeerst said...

And also so bad that ten minutes after watching the end of the finale, I'm still wondering WTF?... outloud... to myself. Quite glad that my flatmate isn't here lol

There are thing I'm going to miss... Alice's expressions, Helena's Britishisms, TiBette sex scenes, Scribegrrl's awesome recaps and facebook things, Kit's amazing lack of dialogue, Tibette sex scenes... hmm.

But these past 8 episodes have been the most frustrating thing I've ever seen on television ever. Highlight of the season? Helena falling off a treadmill. I think that speaks wonders.

Charlus said...

How does that episode jive with what IC The Daily Beast?

"But, at the end of The L Word, I want people to be thinking about whether they’re satisfied by the conclusion, and what we’re taking away with us, how we celebrated and mourned."

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2009-03-05/last-of-the-red-hot-lesbians/2/

Anonymous said...

...that even the homophobes feel sorry for us.

Anonymous said...

That finale was so bad that I hope the spin off DOESN'T get picked up. Leisha deserves better!

Anonymous said...

so bad that Jennifer Beals wouldn't come to the screening party in LA... the woman's got taste.

Anonymous said...

So bad that the best thing about this season was Bette and Tinas hair

Anonymous said...

I watch the finale with the LOWEST of expectations, and I was incredulous at how horrible it was,and how disrespectful to the characters.

then I watched that outtake of the interrogation that someone above posted and I cannot imagine what is wrong with IC! It goes to a deep level.

What utter crap.

I wish we could break these women free adn have other writers take over. Too late....

Anonymous said...

Believe me, I am a huge and loyal fan of the L Word, and I was completely and utterly dumbfounded last night after the finale ended. I had so many whats, wheres, whens whys, hows, and whos in my head afterwards, I couldn't think straight. We fans deserved so much more than this. The actresses deserved so much more than this. And, finally, the show deserved so much more than this.

To add further insult, Ilene Chaiken admitted that she might not have killed off Dana if she knew how strongly the fans would have reacted. WTF?! You have got to be kidding me. I almost fell out of my chair when I heard her say this.

And then, to add even more insult yet, we have to watch these silly webisodes online to "maybe" find out certain answers to certain questions. Unbelievable.

I am simply stunned. Couldn't they just have given us some kind of happy ending? Would that have been so difficult? Would that have been so wrong?

Instead of my now asking, "Who?", I find myself now asking, "Why?"

Anne said...

the finale was so bad that...

...I'm glad it's over now because we won't have any more anxiety about how much worse and ridiculous the story lines are going to get next season.

Anonymous said...

Someone posted this earlier and I so agree with this:
I'd bet the reason Tina's family background was not included in the episode is probably because it tested out poorly with the pre-screeners. I'm sure they had the same response we all did, and so it was not included. Instead of IC changing it and giving Tina some credible family history, IC got her way by sneakily adding it in as an extra, and no doubt it will be a DVD extra too. I really hate the way she has treated the character of Tina, it's almost as if she resents the characters popularity. Who knows, only IC knows what is going in the convoluted mind of hers.
I AGREE WITH YOU!
Illene, you f***** this character up, with incest? Give me a break, you just put that in the minds of people that already think that's what we do all of the time!
To Laurel, you're an awesome actress and thanks for the work that you've done, Jennifer too. IC go straight to, well I'm sure you already know the directions.

Jesmimi said...

That finale was so bad, I can't even enjoy the actresses as eye candy anymore.

Sara Shahi's video message, Lucy Lawless' beautiful tough cop routine, Jennifer Beal's arms: erotic FAIL.

Erika said...

...that Papi's hats clung to Max's facial hair while sobbing about the monstrosity

but i can't complain, the show had its moments of awesomeness

TheWeyrd1 said...

The Series Finale (and really the bad idea of even having a season 6 that prompted a bad re-cut of the season 5 finale) was so bad that Jennifer Beals' breasts are being paid separate bonuses for being right about hiding...

Anonymous said...

Hey baby girl! what can I do without your Pre-L wise articles? thank you so much. I agree with babs they were always better than the episode.. Anyway I shall continue reading you.. and improving my english para entenderte

Anonymous said...

So BAD that "Baby Girl" seems a too long line

TechGirl said...

I am still stunned and just about speakless. Couldn't they have hired Joss Whedon to write the end? This makes me long for Buffy.

Anonymous said...

So bad that George W. Bush could have done a better job writing that ending than Ilene Chaiken....

Heather said...

I'm still really sad that it ended even though I wish there could've been more closure. I love the show and although it has its faults, a few of which were mentioned in the great hour long special before the episode, it is still one of my favorite shows and sunday nights will not be the same without it

Anonymous said...

That finale was so bad... that I'd rather eat food contaminated with Melamine and the Salmonella enterobacteria than watch it again.

Anonymous said...

...that I bet Erin Daniels is thinking getting killed was a good deal.

Ann said...

so bad that compared to it, the theme song was good!

Anonymous said...

that finale was so bad that i finally delurk just to post about it.

Amanda said...

It was so bad that Tina Fey stopped dressing like a small-town lesbian

Amanda

Anonymous said...

that finale was so bad, that sounder has taken a page from the newhart finale and woke up as scully's dog in an old episode of the x-files.

Anonymous said...

...that Jenny is lucky to be swimming with the manatees!

The Gentleman said...

so bad that the mountain lion has acid reflux from having eat MamaC..

imthey said...

I may be one of the few that actually kept my expectations low enough to enjoy the series finale.

Were people really expecting IC to change her stripes after all these years and actually give the viewers what we wanted? Please, if you were expecting resolutions and happy endings you have been watching a different L Word than the one I've been watching for 6 seasons!

IC has never once given us what we the viewer have wanted and were it not for the fact that the actresses did their very best to overcome the terrible writing and the very fact that the TV landscape has few images of lesbians for us to actually watch I would have started and ended this show after the first few episodes, most certainly by the time Dana was killed off!

I have been hearing things about the online interrogation videos that make me happy to have ended the show with the series finale... the final nail in the proverbial coffin appears to be the B.S. that IC has put together with those interrogation tapes. I can't even bring myself to watch a single one at this point with the things that I am hearing. IC would appear to be attempting single handily to destroy any good images of the lesbian community and happily give the heterosexual (save for those straight but not narrow friends of the LGBTQ's) community free reign to continue with their stereotyping of what lesbians are, why there are lesbians, etc.

The lesbian community really needs a GOOD writer with positive views of the lesbian community to come forward with some well written material to turn into a show that can hopefully erase the 6 years of IC self loathing and narcissistic shit that we have been fed by IC!

The Notorious H.A.M. said...

I think the ending was hysterical if you step back and get some perspective - Ilene Chaiken thought she could pull off a Sopranos finale! ROFLMAO!

It's annoying not knowing how Jenny died (and why no one heard the splash), but since I've started watching Damages, I can't help but think that Patty Hewes had something to do with it.

Anonymous said...

even though I was horrified of how bad it was, I think the ending was right for Tina and Bette. they are going to New York, getting a fresh start and I feel like, at least to the fans, their story will go on. it's gonna be hard getting used to sundays without this show!

The B said...

Puede que sea la única en el mundo, pero a mí me ha gustado el último episodio y el final. Al menos no ha sido lacrimógeno, como la mayoría de finales de series. Esta serie, desde el principio, ha sido controvertida y compleja, no iba a ser menos en su final.

A mí me han encantado las 6 temporadas y aunque hay cosas en las que no estoy totalmente de acuerdo, para mí ha sido una magnífica serie.

Anonymous said...

I started watching the show last summer and got hooked on the first season. Then the seasons after it kept beating on my love for the show, but it managed to sort of survive to see the fifth season. I was content. And then IFC did season 6. Which is probably the worst single season on television ever. I mean, it beats all of those shows which get cancelled after one episode. I have since developed a theory that IFC pulled a Jenny and stole someone else's characters out from under them and that's why they were good in the first season, but then she realized that she had no idea what they were about and she started flailing, giving them new personalities and just altogether abusing them (and her audience) to grandstand about crap that she thought we should care about. As a straight woman, I pity the foo' that agreed to let IFC write the first "big lesbian drama". Sadly, I think she definitely took lesbians and set them back 50 years

Anonymous said...

Oh, and speaking of abusing the characters, WTF is up with that interrogation tape? Seriously! As if Tina didn't have enough bad shit to deal with in her life, that's the backstory you're going to stick her with? And why would anyone, ANYONE, tell a detective investigating their friend's possible murder that they have managed to lie to the "love of their life" for ten years without anyone suspecting? And how does this jive at ALL with Tina's reactions to Bette cheating? She's not threatened by Kelly because her mom wasn't threatened by her father cheating but by his sharing poetry with someone? Um, hello... you were very threatened by Bette cheating with the carpenter and if it's the sharing of culture that worries you, isn't Kelly the person Bette will now talk to about ART, the ultimate passion of her life? WTF, IFC, WTF??

Sorry for double posting, but I had gone away and calmed down and then I realized that I had failed to address IFC last "fuck you" to the fans

kabe said...

So bad that Shane slept with a guy and I've killed my cat!

Anonymous said...

the finale was so bad that Erin Daniels was actually thankful she was killed off

Carmencharmen -- Being the The Change said...

the finale was so bad, the government is giving Ilene Chaiken bailout money to buy some writing classes

Velvet Blade said...

Ends up the torture view might actually be accurate. Just read this about music and bad TV being used to torture. http://rosevalenta.blogspot.com/2009/03/counterterrorism-and-humane.html

Anonymous said...

SO bad, that when I told my mother even she threw her hands up in the air in anger of how STUPID it was.

I remember reading a huge spoiler before season 6 even kicked off. Carmen (Sarah shahi) was confirmed to be in 1 of the episodes and they even leaked a bit of the script to us, how carmen walks into the planet and shocks shane...so when the fuck did that happen? it didn't, when does IC ever give us what we want to see?

Way to build a suspense so big and then let it crash down infront of all of us as a big slap in the face, you should be banned from ever directing anything to do with lesbians and bisexuals.

I've been a faithful watcher since season 1 all the way through, and I have to say this is the worse pile of garbage you have ever thrown at us, and left us wondering so many things to the point where we would need another season just to have our questions completely answered.

Ellen DeGeneres could do 10 million times better, maybe we should all write her, and ask her to do it! like really.

-Brittany

Anonymous said...

I already added my comments above about the mind-boggling finale that left such a bad taste in my mouth. But, I have to now add something more about that first interrogation tape. I cannot believe what I just heard. Laurel Holloman must have choked on every single line in that scene. I am stunned. I am so sorry, Laurel. They SO did not need to go there.
I mean, this is the background
that we finally get on Tina? This?! You have got to be effin' kidding me. How dare they. Shame on you, Ilene. This is absolutely inexcusable. This is not the L Word I have known and loved all these years. And, this is not our beloved Tina, either. Again, shame on you. And, you know what really is the sad part about all of this? What once was such a
brilliantly written, powerful and much need show has now become an endless barrage of negative, scathing, and laughable reviews. How sad. So very sad.

Anonymous said...

So bad...may Chaiken never find pussy again.

Lena said...

So bad I want the time I spent watching the past 6 seasons back.

missp said...

so bad, i couldn't be bothered .. even to watch it...sigh....

maclay said...

so bad that I lost all my nipple confidence...

Lets remember the good times, eh? There were a few, inbetween all the personality swapping, Dana-killing and pointless PSAs.