Thursday, 26 January 2017

The L Word, Season 5 (2008)

This season of The L Word continues the escalation I mentioned in my review of the previous series.  Which is to say that it gets even crazier.  Helena gets sent to prison, then hooks up with a butch inmate (played by kickboxer and boxer Lucia Rijker) and runs off with her to a remote island in the Pacific.  Alice outs an professional basketballer on her podcast and becomes the host of a TV show as a result.  A new lesbian bar opens down the road from the gang's favourite hang-out, prompting a bitter rivalry when Shane inevitably can't keep it in her pants.  Oh, and then there's the major plotline involving the movie adaptation of Jenny's book.  A film the increasingly narcissistic Jenny is set to direct, having somehow got the ear of the guy who is financing it.

Trust me when I say I haven't even scratched the surface of the shenanigans that take place in the twelve episodes herein.  It's chock full of nutty stuff.  Heck, even the DVD cover gets in on the wacky hijinks by including Janina Gavanka in the cover montage, despite her character not appearing in the season.

The key to making all this ever escalating melodrama work - and it does (mostly) work - is the efforts of the cast.  They're a talented bunch, and they treat the increasingly absurd situations with far more dignity than they deserve.  Still, even they can't patch over every single one of the show's increasingly obvious logic holes.  So the qualification on my recommendation for this season is an especially strong one: this is worth your time if you've been watching all along and have grown to like these characters, but it's not something I'd suggest you check out as an introduction to the show.  Now of course to some extent that's going to be true of pretty much any program in its fifth season, but I think it is particularly true here.

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