On this chapter of The Queerest Things I Watched Last Week, I start recapping the final season of Orange is the New Black, and the Pose ladies have a girls’ beach trip adventure.
- Orange is the New Black – Season 7 Episode 7 “Me as Well” [Streaming]
Watching the final season of Orange is the New Black is bittersweet. When the show first came out it was remarkable. It was groundbreaking to have a show so diverse and full of queer characters telling the stories of some of the most marginalized people in society. I loved the first few seasons, but the show took a turn, much like Jenji Kohan’s other show Weeds, into gratuitous torture porn including the brutal killing of one of our favorite queer characters, Poussey.
After they killed Poussey I wanted to rage quit the show. Literally, the only reason I stuck with it is that co-running this website makes watching television my second job. I kept hate-watching it, and to my surprise, things turned around in the sixth season. The show still has bad moments, but in my opinion, it has come back from its terrible low.
Now, we’re in the final season of Orange is the New Black and there has been a lot of queer content, especially in this episode.
Up until now, this season has been a lot of Alex and Piper trying to keep their marriage alive with Piper on the outside and Alex still in prison. Alex is also trying to stay out of trouble so she can get out as soon as possible but got forced by CO McCullough to illegally sell portable cell phone chargers.
Nicky has been getting closer to her ICE kitchen coworker, Shani. And in this episode, Shani tells Nicky about a dream she had. Nicky replies with her policy on other people’s dreams.
That seems to be fine with Shani.
I’m glad Nicky is finally getting a romantic storyline. That is at least for now, I’m not done the season yet, and I know bad things usually happen.
Meanwhile, after Piper went on a mini bender, Alex suggests they open their relationship so Piper can get physical satisfaction and not act out in ways that may violate her probation. Piper gives this a try, but it’s not working.
Meaningless sex with randos is not the solution for her. She’s going to have to find other ways to obey the rules assigned to her in post-prison life.
Back in the ICE kitchen, Nicky is navigating her new relationship.
For six seasons Nicky has been in the driver’s seat, but for the first time, someone else is taking charge. It’s fun to watch, and she does eventually stop protesting.
At the end of the episode, Alex and CO McCullough are doing one of their usual phone charger handoffs while Piper is leaving a message telling Alex the open relationship thing is not working.
Oh my goodness! We could all tell there was something brewing between CO McCullough and Alex, and to be honest, I don’t hate it.
I stopped being a Vausman fan early on in the series. In my opinion, Piper is one of the least interesting characters on the show, and Alex and Piper are way too dysfunctional to maintain a healthy relationship. On the other hand, CO McCullough is a really complex character, and I feel like we haven’t gotten to know her well until now.
Also, I broke my brain when I found out the actor who plays her, Emily Tarver, is queer in real life and in a relationship with OitNB co-star Vicci Martinez who plays Dominga “Daddy” Duarte. I’m glad we get to see Emily Tarver playing a queer character, but sadly, Daddy died off-screen in the first episode of this season, so we didn’t get to see her and her girlfriend acting together.
In real life, Emily and Vicci are so cute, and this show can be so bleak and depressing, I’m going to end this recap with one of their ridiculously cute videos.
- BH90210 – Season 1 Episode 2 “The Pitch” [Live]
While Tori is trying to sell her ex-castmates on the 90210 reboot idea, Gabrielle confesses her Vegas kiss to Jason.
I love this IS an “exploring sexuality” arc and not a one-off Vegas kiss. This show incorporates clever commentary on how television has changed in 30 years. In the 90s this kiss would have been a one-time thing for ratings and would involve male gaze. This time it is actually turning into a queer plot which is what we always wanted back then.
On the set of Fake Flash, Jason mentions an actor needing to work something out via their character and this gives Gabrielle an idea. She tells Tori if she’s going to participate in the reboot, she wants to do it right this time.
The thing I love most about this show is the hyper meta-ness. Gabrielle says they can “cast queer” and do it right which is exactly what the show did on the pilot episode by casting Ali as Theresa, the 90210 superfan lesbian bartender.
Tori says she “couldn’t agree more,” and with that, Gabrielle is in.
That night, Gabrielle tells her husband she agreed to do the reboot, and she tells him why.
We cut to another scene before we could see her husband’s reaction. Hopefully, he was understanding.
Y’all, the only way this show could get more meta is if this is the real Gabrielle Carteris’ reason she agreed to the reboot. Wouldn’t that be amazing if that came out in an interview? It’s very unlikely because their “real” characters are highly fictionalized, but it would be fun.
- Pose – Season 2 Episode 9 “Life’s a Beach” [Live]
After a few intense episodes, we got a totally fun, girls trip to the beach! The Pose ladies stayed in a sweet-ass beach house, handily smacked down some local transphobia, and Blanca had a really sweet date!
On the way home they all sang to En Vogue’s “Hold On” in the car and even Electra was smiling.
This week is the season finale, y’all! Doesn’t it feel like the season just started? I’m sad it’s over so soon, but I’m looking forward to what they have in store for us on Tuesday.
This week — the Pose season finale is Tuesday night and maybe my wife and I will finally make it through the final season of Orange is the New Black so we can move on to the big list of shows in our to-watch pile.