L Word 2.2 thoughts

No particular thoughts on this episode, just a general thought. You don’t know what you’re missing until you suddenly have it. A show about lesbians. A show about people like me. Well, sort of like me. None of them are quite like me, nor does my “lesbian lifestyle”–whatever the heck that is–resemble theirs, the places they go, the people they meet, whatever, it’s a soap opera. How many of you live like “Sex and the City”?

My point is, they talk about the kinds of things my friends and I talk about, the writers of the show know the customs and quirks of the natives, and that’s what you never see on television, ever–except on the L Word. And that’s…different. And kind of cool.

Plus: Idyllwild. My favorite place in the universe.

ETA: L Word season 2 spoilers in comments!

Turgid supernatural soap opera

I know I should read Proust and James Joyce and Virginia Woolf and all those people, but I don’t. I haven’t read “literature” since I nodded off in American Short Story in the 10th grade. But I know I should read that stuff because I absorb what I read and it is reflected in how I write.

But *alas*, I read for entertainment. To relax, to pass the time. Anything that I perceive remotely as, “this reading is GOOD for me, it will enhance me as a writer and/or person”, I won’t touch. It’s *work*, and all the pleasure dribbles out of it.

The preceding was my long neurotic apologetic preface to my review of the Tanya Huff Blood series, which falls somewhere in that nether region between fantasy and horror where BtVS and Angel ambiguously reside. And in fact, it was the resemblance of this series, in spirit, if not in level of writing quality, to BtVS/Angel that kept me reading through five books.

Specifically, this series has (1) richly drawn protagonist characters, (2) a hidden world of the “supernatural” existing within our world that our protagonists must enter and investigate and participate in to varying degrees, (3) a writing style that is humorous and a bit irreverent and yet at the same time takes its subject matter seriously, (4) and butofcourse, soap opera. Angst and passion and relationships.


I’m a TV whore

According to many of my local friends (I am no longer calling them my “real life” friends. The internet is “real life”, too, isn’t it?), television is a vast wasteland of continuing stereotypes and gratuitous violence dumbed down to the level of a ten-year old. A ten-year old boy of course, because somehow in this sexist way of thinking, that’s worse than a ten-year old girl.

The only reason you’d want to watch television, according to this way of thinking, is if you want to ogle half-naked breasts. And *we*, sniff, do NOT want to do that (this is coming mostly from lesbians, and I really, really believe them when they say that. It’s a contextual thing. Ogling breasts is really only enjoyable/appropriate in a non-exploitative context. Otherwise it’s… also uncomfortable).

Of course, you CANNOT convince people like this that a show called “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” has any redeeming social value, no matter how many times you talk about Buffy’s butt-kicking or the number of academic papers on her feminist symbolism.

But, screw them. I find plenty to enjoy on television even if I agree that ogling breasts is really only appropriate in a non-exploitative context.

The whole point of this post is to say I got the rest of my goodies in the mail today–the Queer as Folk season 3 tapes and the Highlander Season 1 DVD set. Oh, this is such a dangerous thing. Not the free QAF tapes from a bud, but the pricey DVD sets from amazon. Scrollgirl can attest to this–the temptations of amazon.com and a credit card. Oh, my wishlist overfloweth–I’ve got ST:TNG, ST:DSN, Highlander, and X-Files beckoning from my wish list.

At home, I have home-made VHS copies of all of the above, not to mention ST: TOS, Voyager, and Enterprise and Forever Knight and H: The Raven and Lois and Clark and Roswell and Space: Above and Beyond (sniff! It died too young!), and “Soap”.

I’ve got drug dealers… er, I mean friends, sending me Six Feet Under and Queer as Folk tapes. I am pre-ordered at amazon for All Things BtVS and Angel, because they’re BtVS and Angel. Plus, they’re cheaper than the aforementioned DVD stuff.

Through the magic that is netflix, I am catching up on Babylon 5, which I’ve only seen once through, Space 1999, which I haven’t seen in 25 years, Dark Shadows, which is impossible to keep up with on cable, La Femme Nikita, and Stargate SG-1.

And ooh! Did you know that Season 1 of “ER” is coming out on DVD soon? I had to stop watching that show after the first season because I just had too many viewing commitments at the time. I’d love to catch up in a more systematic way than the occasional cable rerun. Plus “Alias” is coming out on DVD in September. I haven’t seen it because of the previous conflict with Angel. Ditto on Smallville, whenever it comes out. It conflicted with some show or other I watched/taped back when it debuted.

And ooh! The new season of “The Dead Zone” started last night.

Do you see a trend here? Do you see how this is? I am a TV whore!

What happens next?

So I’ve been watching the “Six Feet Under” tapes Rob sent, and I have to say, the show is a real kick. I’m just not sure if it’s a fun kick or a kick in the ribs. I’ve never seen so many neurotic people in my life, and I come from a family that specializes in all the important neuroses (like my dad, this past week. Oy! The man is the master of the “poor me” guilt trip. Comes by my room towards the end of the week, “I don’t know if you remember me, I’m your father”. As if I hadn’t spoken to the man all week and gone out to meals with him and everything).

I was reading reviews of “Six Feet Under” on Netflix and someone says in there, “I don’t know why Nate is with that high-maintenance Brenda”. And I’m like, “Um… have you seen all the sex he’s getting?” Now that I’m a little further along, I’m beginning to wonder, too. OK, so I’m a big sucker for the serialized drama (we do not call them “Soap Operas” anymore!) I have to know what’s going to happen next in on-going relationships between people.

The only thing that drags me down with SFU is the way someone always dies at the beginning of each episode. If it was mostly the elderly/natural causes or leukemia patients going quietly in hospitals with family at their side, I could deal with it. But it’s invariably someone young-ish and healthy who doesn’t see it coming. Accidents. The episode starts, and you’re thrust into a scene with some characters you don’t know going about their lives, and what you DO know is, someone’s going to kick it tragically by the end of this scene. I’ve started fast-forwarding through these because it’s not my idea of hang-on-the-edge-of-my-seat suspense finding out who and how. Bleah.

Well, I guess I’d better get back to work. I’m still recovering from my vacation and a Benedryl hang-over (Bennie used as a sleep aid, not as an allergy medication).