When we started our Lesbian Scientistics program at AfterEllen.com, we were interested in answering one question: Are powerful women hot? The answer was yes, sort of. Actually, it was kind of inconclusive. While lesbians, it seems, are attracted to power, they think other qualities are hot too. But what other qualities? Well, last week when the Emmy finalists were announced, it seemed a perfect time to do a little more scientific research.
Firstly, we looked at the nominees for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama:
Sally Field, Brothers and Sisters
Kyra Sedgwick, The Closer
Glenn Close, Damages
Mariska Hargitay, Law and Order: SVU
Holly Hunter, Saving Grace
Secondly, we pondered the women nominated for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy:
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, The New Adventures of Old Christine
Christina Applegate, Samantha Who?
Tina Fey, 30 Rock
America Ferrera, Ugly Betty
Mary-Louise Parker, Weeds
According to our study, 60% of funny women are hot, whereas only 20% of dramatic women are hot. Our researchers were shocked! We thought lesbians loved drama. How else can one explain the staying-friends-with-your-ex phenomenon? Consider the wise words of AfterEllen.com blogger and author of Stuff Lesbians like, Grace Chu:
Lesbians like drama. Lesbians will not hesitate to instigate a confrontation, because it gives them the opportunity to process, process and process some more until they eventually resolve the conflict. Resolving conflict gives lesbians a sense of accomplishment. Lesbians will artificially initiate a conflict just to feel the sense of accomplishment resulting from resolving the conflict.
We emailed Grace to help with our research. If lesbians really don’t like drama, what other Sapphic stereotypes are wrong? Is the U-Haul thing a myth? Are leather wrist cuffs not a dead giveaway? Are Birkenstocks straight? What are we supposed to do with these flannel shirts?!
“Calm down,” Grace Chu told us. “Drama begets comedy. Once the ‘poor me!’ statute of limitations has passed, our past suffering becomes fodder for comedy.”
We breathed a huge sigh of relief. Then we delved even deeper into Grace Chu’s data:
If our research is correct, lesbians find funny women 40% hotter than dramatic women. We realize, of course, that we may be playing too loosely with the word “drama.” When lesbian drama is initiated it looks like texting your friends when you know they’re out with your ex-girlfriend. When Mariska Hargitay initiates drama, it looks like this:
Big difference, we hope.