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:: T H E  L W O R D  S E A S O N  5  B R I N G S  S E X Y  B A C K ::
By April MacIntyre
M & C

The L Word's coming back on Sunday, 9pm on Showtime.

***Partial Spoiler Alert***

The long-running Sapphic soap opera features the most stunning well-to-do lesbians on the planet who incestuously trade partners like people pass out Chiclets.

Showtime's "The L Word" is a pastiche character-driven dramedy of accomplished women in Los Angeles’ lesbian community and their byzantine love/life stories. This critically acclaimed series takes a lifestyle perhaps unfamiliar, and makes it all seem very ordinary at times.

This season will please those who felt the series got a bit vanilla, a cardinal sin in rainbow colored Gay-land.

The writers have injected testosterone into the very graphic sex that we see, this isn’t Anais Nin high-brow writhing and filmy girl kisses, more like wham-bam rough stuff. The straight guys who fantasize about comely girls doing the business will love the new order.

The casting is well-stocked with veteran champs like Pam Grier (Kit) and Wallace Shawn, a smitten producer who takes Jenny Schecter’s “Lez Girls” article and blows it up into a movie, all cast and produced within season 5 of the L Word.

Season 5 is Mia Kirshner's character Jenny’s turn to shine as a neurotic writer / director; she is hilarious refusing to rein in her ego as she abuses her assistants to no end. She has an imbroglio with her foisted upon leading lady only to find a surprise attraction waits.

Katherine Moennig as Shane is still the low-key ladykiller, a gamine, Audrey Hepburn meets Anime boy style fusion who disarms seemingly straight women right into her hands (literally) and seduces the world.

In fact, Shane snags an entire family of straight women, all at one fateful wedding. That episode was a bit much for me.

Jennifer Beals and Laurel Holloman play central cast members Bette and Tina; the long running on-again, off-again professional couple have their tender moments. I won’t spoil it for you.

Marlee Matlin as Bette’s new squeeze Jodi and Cybill Shepherd as Phyllis shine in their roles for season 5.

Matlin plays Jodi, the fiercely independent art professor with passion. Matlin has one of the funnier scenes as she drives Bette to Big Bear to meet her inner circle of friends. As she drives, she is animatedly telling Bette about her pals in sign language. Lots of near-death swerving ensues.

Cybill Shepherd as Chancellor Phyllis is funny as hell as the accomplished mid-life lesbian. She ditches a 25 year marriage with children to play the field with the ladies. Her scenes with great comedic actress Jane Lynch (as Joyce) are no-miss.

Rachel Shelley plays Helena, the hapless rich girl who has her trust-fund money snatched away by her mummy, the vilest matriarch in televised history. Helena winds up in jail.

A not-so-hot prison shower scene happens - and uncharacteristically for the L Word - flawed, real women are shown fully naked.

Yes, Helena accidentally drops the soap, and for all the pervy guys out there who watch this show, prison sex occurs.

Pam Grier as Bette’s sister Kit runs The Planet, the hub of all L Word doings. Grier normally is cast as a powerhouse player, and seeing her so vulnerable seems a bit off at times for me, but she does an excellent balancing act for all the Alice/Shane/Jenny insanity happening around the core group of girls.

Ah Alice. All the young girls love Alice, tender young Alice they say. She is the Chelsea Handler of the group: A brash, disher of lesbian dirt on the air, quick-witted and quite the connector of the dots. Only Shane gets more puss than Alice.

Leisha Hailey's quirky Alice character has one of the more interesting story lines for season 5, her girlfriend Tasha faces the most difficult hurdle a gay person in the military can be confronted by. Her dedication and excellent service to our country is in real jeopardy.

Even The Planet has a bit of competition this season. A new L Word locational muse is introduced to the action. “It’s like South Beach threw up in here,” says Shane. “Shebar” is invitation-only venue where the pretty lesbians get to drink, dance and debauch the night away.

Yes, Shane sleeps with the owners of Shebar too. At the same time.


Jennifer Beals ... Bette Porter

Leisha Hailey ... Alice Pieszecki

Laurel Holloman ... Tina Kennard

Mia Kirshner ... Jenny Schecter

Katherine Moennig ... Shane McCutcheon

Pam Grier ... Kit Porter

Rachel Shelley ... Helena Peabody

Erin Daniels ... Dana Fairbanks

Dallas Roberts ... Angus Partridge

Sarah Shahi ... Carmen de la Pica Morales

Daniela Sea ... Max Sweeney

Rated MA: Nudity, language - not for kids

Grade A for lovers of attractive people being naked and having adult situational sex

Grade F for Iowa "values voters"


The L Word Online has been designed by Oz and Slicey.  Unique images designed by Oz.  Site maintained by Oz & Slicey.  This website is intended to be fun and informative, and was created with respect to show appreciation for the women and men involved in the creation of TV's first real lesbian drama.  This site is not endorsed, sponsored, or affiliated with Showtime Networks Inc., the television series "The L Word," or any person involved in the making of the show.  No copyright infringement is intended.  Images and other borrowed content are copyright their respective owners.  Credit is given where due.  All original content is the sole property of  the creators of The L Word Online copyright October 2003.