On this chapter of The Queerest Things I Watched Last Week, The Handmaid’s Tale freaks us all the F out; Freya and Keelin are reunited on The Originals and CBS Sunday Morning has a timely feature on Janelle Monáe and Dirty Computer.
- The Handmaid’s Tale – Season 2 Episode 2 “Unwomen” [Live]
I know this is an unpopular opinion, but I am not a fan of The Handmaid’s Tale. I think too much of the show is dedicated to torture porn when it could be spent on characters and plot. And just because the subject matter is dark, that doesn’t mean it has to be literally dark. Some scenes are shot with so little light you can barely see anything. I’m still watching it though, mostly for Samira Wiley.
This episode, partially focused on Emily/Ofglen/Ofsteven and her backstory, really pushed all our queer panic buttons. We see Emily where she is now — working in the Colonies which is an uninhabitable toxic wasteland. And we have flashbacks to Emily’s previous life as a university professor.
Things are going south at the University when Emily loses the teaching portion of job. The board is concerned she’s not “maintaining a healthy learning environment.” Her boss, Dan (who is also gay), lets her know how they came to that conclusion.
He thinks they should lay low for awhile and Emily says, “So, you thought it was time to hide the dykes.” Dan tells her that he took all the pictures of his partner down from his office.
Emily goes to work one day and finds Dan hanged in front of the school with the word “faggot” spray painted on the sidewalk. She decides it’s time to get the F out of the US.
Her and her wife Sylvia (played by Clea DuVall) and their kid Oliver are at the airport trying to get their flight to Montreal. ICE agents wont give Emily a boarding pass, because her wife is Canadian but she is not. She then shows him their marriage certificate. He says it’s good and she just needs to get a “border traffic bypass stamp.” Sylvia and Oliver get boarding passes and Emily gets a conditional pass.
Emily, Sylvia and Oliver meet with an ICE supervisor to get the stamp and he is asking Emily questions about the kid like, “You’re the one who gave birth to the child?” and, “Was it your egg or an implanted embryo.” These are just like the questions my chatty Lyft driver was asking me the other day.
The ICE agent tells Emily she’s not going to Montreal with them today, so she should just let them go. She then shows her her marriage certificate.
— LezWatchTV 📺🏳️🌈 (@lezwatchtv) April 28, 2018
This scene alone is enough to send my wife into a panic spiral (she’s the pessimist of the relationship). Really though, this is one of our worst fears being played out on TV.
Emily, Sylvia and Oliver have a teary goodbye.
Then Emily’s wife and kid go up the freedom escalator and leave Emily behind to the doom we all know lies ahead for her.
This scene is a hate crime, Handmaid’s Tale!
- The Originals – Season 5 Episode 2 “One Wrong Turn on Bourbon” [Live]
Full disclosure, I have almost no idea what’s happening on this show, because up until this season I’ve only watched the Freya and Keelin videos on YouTube. But I’ll try to recap with my limited knowledge!
Keelin has been away from New Orleans for a long time and Freya is happy to see her!
Later they talk about their future.
— LezWatchTV 📺🏳️🌈 (@lezwatchtv) April 28, 2018
But then Freya, who is a witch and not a vampire, does a spell thing, says she feels no magic here then tells Keelin she has to leave.
— LezWatchTV 📺🏳️🌈 (@lezwatchtv) April 30, 2018
A classic soap opera, “everything’s great, no we have to break up because [fill in the blank].”
One thing I’ve been able to determine is Freya talks about her family all the time and there seems to be a lot of sacrificing her own happiness for the sake of her family. I find women get assigned that role too often on shows. This is the final season, so I hope they get a happy ending to make up for the way The Vampire Diaries went down.
- CBS Sunday Morning – Season 40 Episode 32 “#40.32” [Live]
I like CBS Sunday Morning just fine, but they are not usually on top of the newest events in pop culture. So I was surprised they had a feature on Janelle Monáe the weekend after Dirty Computer and the accompanying Emotion Picture dropped.
During the interview, the interviewer asked her if she was going to “settle the question,” which was a really weird way to ask if she was going to come out, to which Janelle said this:
Such a great answer! Statements like this save lives.
Here is the entire feature:
That’s all I got. Still nothing on Maia on The Good Fight and For the People skipped airing last week. I hope we get queer legal drama action this week!