Best. Lesbian. Week. Ever. (June 6, 2008)

ONE STEP FORWARD, TWO STEPS BACK
Odds are that if you get a big enough group of women together, at least one of them will be gay. That’s just, you know, math. So imagine my delight when Hollywood actually followed real-world statistics and included a gay woman in the mix of its new all-star remake of The Women. A gay woman amid The Women — how refreshing.

In the film, Jada Pinkett Smith plays out lesbian Alex Fisher. She’s one of a group of upper-crust friends who all work in New York’s fashion and publishing worlds. The ladies must rally around one of their own (played by Meg Ryan) after they discover her husband is having an affair with a younger, hotter woman (played by Eva Mendes).

Now, we know Jada’s character is a lesbian for a couple of reasons. First, she’s pretty much the only character wearing pants. Pants are, you know, totally gay. She’s also the only character who thinks there are enough boys in the world already. Disliking boys is, you know, totally gay. And, she is the only character to think Eva’s adulterous perfume girl is, and I quote, "fi-oh-ne." Thinking hotties are hot is, you know, totally gay.

The star-studded cast also includes Annette Bening, Debra Messing, Candice Bergen, Bette Midler, Lynn Whitfield, Debi Mazar, Ana Gasteyer, Carrie Fisher, Joanna Gleason and Cloris Leachman. The film is a remake of the 1939 camp classic that famously featured no male on-screen roles. The long-gestating project has been in and out of the works for the past 14 years.

The new trailer features some blink-and-you’ll-miss-them allusions to Jada’s character’s sexuality:

After seeing the trailer, I’m not entirely sure the wait was worth it. While I hold out hope for the project — plus, it’s written and directed by Murphy Brown mastermind Diane English — I can’t help but groan at the clichés already in the plot.

Catty women. Comedic delivery room scenes. Personal transformation via hair straighteners (check out Meg’s pre- and post-affair locks in the trailer — someone bought a flat iron!) And that doesn’t even touch on the poodles, nail polish and afternoon gimlets (though I heartily approve of the latter).

Even though I’m wary, I’ll brave some overwrought stereotypes to see Jada play gay. I just may need a couple of gimlets to make it though.

TOP CHEFBIAN
Out lesbian chef Lisa Fernandes has made it to the grand finale of Top Chef: Chicago. The 27-year-old New Yorker has outlasted 13 other contestants to make it to the finals in Puerto Rico. She will compete against two other chefs for the title of Top Chef: Stephanie Izard from Chicago and Richard Blais from Atlanta.

Lisa’s advancement to the finals is an upset of sorts. She has survived six appearances on the chopping block this season. In the first part of the finale, which aired this week, Lisa beat out fellow final four contestant Antonia Lofaso of Los Angeles, who was considered one of this season’s favorites. (Catch up on the season so far with the AfterEllen.com Top Chef recaps.)

This season featured the most-ever out lesbian cheftestants: Lisa and San Francisco couple Zoi Antonitsas and Jennifer Biesty. Antonitsas and Biesty were sent packing in the fifth and seventh episodes respectively.

The finale airs Wednesday, June 11, at 10 p.m. ET on Bravo.

by Dorothy Snarker

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