Best. Lesbian. Decade. Ever. (2000 – 2009)


D.E.B.S hits theaters
Angela Robinson
‘s short film received so much attention at Sundance in 2004 that it was chosen by Sony’s Screen Gem division to be turned into a feature. The feature film, featuring Jordana Brewster as a lesbian assassin, was released in theaters nationwide in 2005 and becomes a cult hit.

Saving Face and Rent are released
Out lesbian director Alice Wu‘s first feature film is also the first American theatrical release to feature an Asian American lesbian couple. In Rent, the movie adaptation of the hit Broadway musical had Idina Menzel reprising her role as Maureen (whose girlfriend is played by Tracie Thoms). Their interracial relationship is the first one of its ilk to be featured in a nationwide mainstream release.

Sheryl Swoopes comes out
After retiring from the WNBA, star baller Sheryl Swoopes spoke openly about her relationship with former Comets assistant coach Alisa Scott. Swoopes also became the face of Olivia Cruises and returned to the WNBA to play for the Seattle Storm in 2008. (She was later waived in the draft in 2009).

Cherry Jones thanks Sarah Paulson after winning a Tony
Openly gay actress Cherry Jones was awarded Best Actress in a Play at the 59th Annual Tony Awards and planted a kiss on her girlfriend’ (actress Sarah Paulson) lips, live on CBS. She also thanked Sarah, creatively, as her character from The Glass Menagerie ("Laura Wingfield, I share this with you"). In 2009, we reported that the couple had amicably parted and remain friends..

A lesbian relationship develops on The OC
Thanks to the Fox teen series, we were introduced to Olivia Wilde. Wilde played The OC‘s edgy lesbian bartender, Alex, who eventually dated Mischa Barton‘s Marissa. What started off sweet and fun ended predictably, with Marissa returning to men and Alex leaving town.

Logo is launched
LGBTQ viewers get more to watch when the new cable channel Logo (part of the MTV network) makes its debut.

South of Nowhere debuts on The N

In arguably some of the best lesbian teens on television ever, an entire series was dedicated to the coming out of a 15-year-old Spencer Carlin (Gabrielle Christian) and her subsequent relationship with her best friend Ashley Davies (Mandy Musgrave). Until it jumped the shark in its last season, the series was well-written, aesthetically pleasing and overall must-see-lesbian-TV.

Lesbians appear on Passions, Degrassi, One Tree Hill, Queer Eye for the Straight Girl, and America’s Next Top Model, The Simpsons and Law & Order
Honey Labrador (Queer Eye for the Straight Girl) and Kim Stolz (America’s Next Top Model) both became famous for playing themselves on reality TV this year, and Marge Simpson‘s sister Patti came out and married a woman on the hit animated series. On the other dramas, lesbian couples were depicted alongside several straight couples, all woven into multi-layered storylines.

Sugar Rush and Fingersmith are adapted for TV

Britain’s Channel 4 created a 10-episode series about teen Kim (Olivia Hallinan) who realized she was in love with her friend, Sugar (Lenora Crichlow). The show expanded into a second season, and inspired a follow-up novel, Sweet.  Also, Sarah Waters‘ novel, Fingersmith, about a Sapphic relationship during the Victorian era was made into a two-part BBC mini-series.

— by Trish Bendix

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