Legacy of Love
Yet another episode starting with Sophie and Finley, the back-and-forth “we should be together” couple, who are actually incapable of being together, because they are both immature, irresponsible, indecisive to top it off with a dash of insecurity on Sophie’s part and a cup of liquor when it comes to Finley. Maybe we should consider them a match made in heaven, as I can see nobody else being able to put up with either of them, and their level of stupidity is probably only matched by my level of irritation over having to watch them every week. So, with my deepest apologies about featuring them even at the top of my column now, let’s quickly move on to what was thankfully an absolutely beautiful and in many ways meaningful episode for the greater part.
Dani, who has always wanted Bette’s approval, gets any questions she may have had left over Bette’s feelings for Gigi answered, when Bette, suddenly confronted with the Nùñez name on the CAC building, agitatedly replies “I don’t give a shit about Gigi”, she also realizes that her idol can become quite fierce and uncompromising when it comes to her first and paramount love: art, untainted! No matter how good Dani’s intentions and how close their friendship, Bette won’t have it that the Nùñez name, “a company that has profited from the pain of black people” will be attached to her art show of all black artists. It was probably more than she needed to know to throw herself in Gigi’s arms unreservedly, merely stating “fuck Bette Porter.”
Bette, who had given Pippa her word that this time around there would not be a letdown regarding her art show, now has to avert the upcoming disaster, but appears to be failing miserably. As she realizes what’s on the line, when Pippa walks out of her office and possibly out of her life, we get our so familiar Bette Porter “fuck, FUUUCCKKKK”! It’s the ultimate sign that she will give it her all to sort out this mess. And she’d better, because I’ve grown attached to them. Their chemistry, the way they’re able to communicate, their strong physique and facial expressions perfectly complementing their words, the way Pippa makes Bette self-reflect like no one has before, it all feels almost as predestined to me. Seeing them together moves me. Seeing them fight fills me with sadness (especially when mid-fight Pippa is still capable of being more concerned about Angie’s well-being than about the possible loss of her art show). Seeing them make up, with this enormous willingness to really hear each other, and Bette speaking those memorable words “I think I’m better off leaving a legacy of love, rather than of destruction. You taught me that!”, right before resting her head on Pippa’s shoulder and being held tightly, made my heart go to mush. To me they are one of those rare couples that feel as if they’ve known each other for a lifetime already. And in a way I guess you could say they have. Maybe love between soulmates does begin with some kind of mutual respect and appreciation, even if from a distance. Whatever it is that makes them splash off our screens, there is an undeniable understanding between them. They know each other’s core, they realize the gem in it and how it requires protection and shelter. All speculations about a tibette reunion aside, for now, I believe this relationship is wholesome and nourishing, for the both of them.
This must have been the episode where the writers said “let’s bring out the tissues”, when they decided to have Alice read the chapter about Dana at her book launch party. Right after she broke Tom’s heart, I should add, by confessing she slept with Nat. The poor guy nearly choked, yet still had to go on stage to announce this “honest, caring and wickedly funny” woman. Going on to mention her other side as well; emotional and empathetic! “She can’t watch an episode of dr. Pimplepopper without crying”. When he ends his introduction by calling her “one of the most amazing people I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with” you can’t help but crumble for his pain, and hope that in f*cking Nat, she hasn’t f*cked up what may well become the most meaningful relationship she’s had since Dana. Ah yes, so back to chapter “Dana”. The chapter Tom made her put in elaborately in the first place. “When Dana was sick, I made her hospital room my home. One day a nurse convinced me to take a break, so I left her side”. I don’t think there is one The L Word lover who doesn’t know, feel and break at the rest of that story. Yes, “you are my sunshine” indeed is without doubt the most annoying song ever written, and more than befitting for a weird, cheap plastic plant, but when Alice explains how the tune, ever since she missed Dana go, is still stuck in her head, we feel her pain. “I would have held her, I would have told her it was ok to let go”. I won’t sugarcoat it, this scene broke my heart as much as it visibly did Bette’s and Shane’s.
Whether Alice’s heartbreaking read had anything to do with it or not, but right after the book launch Shane follows Tess, who went to see her mother, to Las Vegas and surprises her in her hotel room. We see a Shane we’ve only ever before seen with Carmen: sweet, caring, making love instead of “just” having sex and waking up with her woman the next morning. They are truly wonderful together. Tess seems to provide the grounding that Shane needs. And Shane, in turn, seems to provide the strong and caring support that Tess needs. They complete each other and are at ease with each other. Their morning smiles are a bonus treat for all who love this couple. And hey, we’re in episode 8 already… who would have thought that Shane would be the last person we see having sex in this season of The L Word, huh?
For the sake of completeness, I should mention that we were left with next week’s preview: Tina asking Bette “are you still in love with me?” And Twitter went wild again and will very likely continue to do so until next week.
Have a great one!
Love your analysis! Thanks for that. I’m thinking just like you about Bette and Pippa relationship. Never seen Bette so connected with someone that way not even with Tina. They showed us there’s something special there. Even tough I feel that maybe the writers are still holding them back to feel the reaction of the audience. That “Legacy of love” scene was so powerful when a black woman say that to another black woman. I heard Bette say this with that statement: “People expect hate from us but only love will cure our wounds from racism. Let’s not hate each other, let’s love each other (as black women). I wanna give you love cuz I understand the world didn’t give you that”.
Hello Juliana, thank you very much for reading and for this additional perspective. It certainly makes a lot of sense! And since the writers have clearly put a lot of effort in addressing multiple societal and other issues this season, I can totally see how they would have chosen this particular scene to also address racism as well. Sadly it is still much needed, but at least it was done in a most beautiful way! Thanks again, and have a wonderful day 🌞