Today it came to my attention that I never did find out who killed Jenny Schechter in the final instalment of ‘The L Word’.
The groundbreaking series about a group of mostly middle-class lesbian pals living in LA, which ran for six successful seasons during the mid to late noughties, was one of my biggest TV staples back in the day; and even though the emotionally unhinged and often manipulative Jenny (played by Mia Kirshner) was my least favourite character, it still bugs me that her murder / accidental death / suicide via drowning was left unresolved. So, naturally, I spent the afternoon thinking about it, and wondering what would happen if one of the other characters did get convicted of bumping her off, and how that person would fare alongside Alex and Piper and the rest of the lags in Litchfield Penitentiary in the event of a cross-over episode/s with ‘Orange Is The New Black’.
Of course, I’d previously heard the rumours about the spin-off prison drama ‘The Farm’ starring Leisha Hailey, where her quirky character Alice Pieszecki is banged up in a Californian jail after being charged with the murder. And during a frenzied bout of googling, I found further reference to the pilot series which, apparently, was filmed but later cancelled by ‘Showcase’ network. I then spent a further two hours trying to find out more information as well as hunting for a trailer, but gave up after my search revealed nothing but nasty footage of farm animals being tortured and a short horror film of the same name.
I can just imagine the sort of scenario that would take place if Alice’s character ended up in Lichfield: she’d be five and a half years into a life sentence, long-forgotten by all her old West Hollywood buddies and worn down by the unfairness of the prison system… until of course she meets Piper who straight away recognises her as an ex-almost-celesbian journalist and radio show host; Piper will then stalk and talk at Alice (despite warnings from her on-off girlfriend, Alex, that she shouldn’t get involved) until Alice wearily agrees to ask Counsellor Healy if she can be the host of a new prison radio station project. Said radio project will initially be a success, until shenanigans take place and the Healy shuts it down; but obviously not before Alice gains renewed media attention and is freed on appeal.
Antonia disagrees with this particular vein of thought. She maintains that feisty art-critic Bette Porter (Jennifer Beals), who she’s fancied ever since she saw her playing a tom-boy welder in the eighties movie, ‘Flash Dance’, would make a much better inmate; Antonia claims that a) Bette had a stronger motive for murder (Jenny photographed Bette looking like she was in a compromising situation with her old college pal and then threatened to send the pics to Bette’s partner); and b) she likes the idea of Bette going head to head with Alex Vauss.
Two of my friends also thought that rich bitch Helena Peabody (Rachel Shelley) would look good in orange jumpsuit; and a third said she’d like to see Jenny end up in Litchfield – when I pointed out that Jenny Schechter’s character was dead so that was unlikely, the possibility of an evil twin was suggested.
Personally, I think Showcase missed a really good opportunity when they turned down The Farm: even if the storyline with Alice as a convict ended up being completely rubbish, the lesbian contingency would still have tuned in just to see what happened. So, on the off-chance that producer Ilene Chaiken decides to give the series a second chance and is looking for a writer with a fresh perspective, I am keeping my Saturday nights free…