‘The L Word’ lives on: Groundbreaking series to return to Showtime

By : Rachel Dececco
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They lived, laughed, loved, fought, caused unimaginable amounts of drama…and they’re BACK! A revival of the award-winning 2004 Showtime series, The L Word, is currently in production.

Ilene Chaiken’s groundbreaking series about a group of friends in Los Angeles, California changed the face of television by being the first ever dramatic series exclusively about lesbian characters who were complex and open about their sexuality and relationships.

During it’s six season run, despite some of it’s campy themes and exaggerated plotlines, The L Word was hailed for it’s diversity and ability to tell the stories of women, not as tropes or cliches, but as honored individual human beings connected by emotions and experiences to a greater community.

There was speculation, during the June 15 The L Word Reunion show on E! News, as to whether or not a reboot was in store. The series renewal would be refreshing in a time where there is a severe drought in LGBTQ representation on television.

“When we went off the air in 2009, I think a lot of people thought, ‘Okay, the baton is passed now and there will be lots of shows that portray lesbian life.’ There’s really nothing,” said Chaiken during the reunion.

The news of a potential sequel was applauded by GLAAD.

“The past few years have seen lesbian and queer women characters in television killed off in shockingly high numbers,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, GLAAD President and CEO. “It is refreshing and exciting to see GLAAD Media Award-winning The L Word returning to television where it can tell nuanced, entertaining, and beautiful stories of an largely underrepresented community.”

Three former cast members have already signed on to be apart of the project. Jennifer Beals (Bette), Kate Moennig (Shane) and Leisha Hailey (Alice) will serve as executive producers, and also appear in the series.

Although the beloved actresses will be a part of the show, the plot will not solely focus on continuing their stories. Instead it will introduce a new cast of queer women with the old characters appearing from time to time to stir the pot and explore the interconnections in their relationships, a major plot point of the original series.

Although Chaiken will  be an executive producer for the project, she will not be the show runner. Currently she is holding that position on Fox’s hit series Empire. The call is still out for a new writer/show runner who ideally has ties to the lesbian community.

Currently there is no premiere date for the series.

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