Ok, I have been conspicuously absent from posting on COP for a while. I changed jobs ‘ but that isn’t the real reason I have been so silent. In January, we had a historic first for the gay community in the US (and I’m not even talking about gay marriages.) Showtime (a cable TV rival of HBO) began the first ever TV series about the lives of a group of friends who are all lesbian or bisexual.
With the season finale coming up this weekend, I think its time for me to admit it, I’m totally addicted. I can’t even be bothered to get excited about any movies and I’m literally glued to the TV every week. Is the show that good? Well, yes and no. Probably the biggest fault I have with the show is that it was trying to do to much all at once.
The directors constrained themselves a little by creatively paying homage to the many of the lesbian films that have paved the way for this ground breaking series (Go Fish, Desert Hearts, etc.). I certainly give them credit for taking some risks, but in a one-hour show that is trying to present the lives of six very different and complex women, the visual allusions to the big screen sometimes seemed to take precedence over the more basic necessities of good writing and strong plot development.
And what a lot of plot development they attempted.The storyline tackles a ton of “big” issues such as interracial relationships, lesbian pregnancy, substance abuse, and homophobia in the workplace just to name a few of the heavy things. They also try to present the ‘community,’ however much it can be characterized as such. So they rush to show the Dinah Shore Weekend, drag king shows, issues of bisexuality, and even a lesbian identified man. But in the composite, each of these topics is given such a small amount of attention that it becomes slightly overwhelming. I can only hope the writers will draw out the story a little more slowly now that they have such strong ratings and have been solidly renewed for another season.
The strength of the show, however, is the humor, compassion and a friendship between the ensemble cast that is reminiscent of the girls from Sex and the City . So overall, I find myself endeared to the characters and delighted to see something that approximates my life shown regularly on TV. Albeit not network TV, but the tradeoff is that at least on Showtime we get to see the women kiss and have sex, which network television is terrified to show even on overtly gay shows like Will and Grace.
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