Television

Goodbye, Old Friends

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‘The L Word’ returns to Showtime for a final season. Plus Ted Allen starts chopping. Sean Penn gets nominated. And RuPaul gets replaced (yeah right).

By Nancy Ford

LWord
L is the word

Women can change in six years. A lot. They can fall in love, fall apart, have a baby, fall back in love, fall apart again, and come back together again. Or they can go to prison, yet find love. Or they can identify as bisexual one year, but can decide the very next year to shun the penis and stick to loving women, even in the face of losing those loving women to death and Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.

 The final season of the Showtime’s hit cable series that opened humanity-at-large’s eyes to lesbian culture has been reduced to a scant eight episodes. In those few episodes, will Bette (Jennifer Beals) and Tina (Laurel Holloman) remain in their re-found wedded bliss? Will Shane (Katherine Moennig) stop dogging around and finally settle down with her one true love, and is that one true love Carmen (Sarah Shahi) or Jenny (Mia Kirshner)? Will Max (Daniela Sea) use it or lose it?

 All we know for sure is that Alice (Leisha Hailey) may—or may not—return to us in the form of a spin-off. If there’s a god in heaven….

 Showtime mines Sundays for girl gold, following The L Word with the series premiere of United States of Tara starring Toni Collette, and the return of Secret Diary of a Call Girl. Sunday, January 18, 8 p.m. Showtime (sho.com).

 Photo caption: It was lovely while it lasted: returning one last time for a mini-season at The L Word are (back row, l–r) Leisha Hailey as Alice, Rachel Shelley as Helena, Pam Grier as Kit, Laurel Holloman as Tina; (front row, l–r) Katherine Moennig as Shane, Mia Kirshner as Jenny, and Jennifer Beals as Bette.
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TedAllen
Ted Allen

 Think Musical Chairs (kind of) But With Food  
Ted Allen (Queer Eye, Food Detectives) hosts the culinary series challenging four fledgling chefs to turn a selection of everyday ingredients into an extraordinary three-course meal. After each course, one contestant gets Chopped — ergo, the show’s title — until the last man or woman left standing claims the grand prize of $10,000. January 13, 9 p.m. The Food Network (foodnetwork.com).

 Cream of the Crop
Coming as little surprise to anyone who witnessed his brilliant performance in Gus Van Sant’s feature film, Milk , Sean Penn is among a field of five nominated to receive a Golden Globe Award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Drama. He recently won both the New York and Los Angeles film critics’ awards. The 66th Annual Golden Globe Awards airs Sunday, January 11, 7 p.m. on NBC.

 Not NASCAR  

Supermodel of the World, the irrepressible RuPaul, is looking for a successor, it seems. We don’t believe that for a minute, but nonetheless nine top drag queens are set to compete for the title of Drag Queen Superstar in RuPaul’s new television vehicle, RuPaul’s Drag Race. Ru, author Merle Ginsberg, and Project Runway winner Santino Rice judge the diva’d-up syncers, and welcome different celebrity judges, like Bob Mackie, Lucy Lawless, and Jenny Shimuzu, to their panel each week. February 2. Logo (logoonline.com).

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