Last Friday night, a million little lesbians squealed with joy as they watched the first six-minute webisode of Venice for the 50th time.
Yes, my friends, Otalia is back and hotter than ever in the online series created by Crystal Chappell and Kimmy Turrisi, which stars the beautiful Chappell as Gina Brogno and Jessica Leccia as Ani Martino.
The series, set in Venice Beach, Calif., follows Gina a gay, “self-made interior designer who is strong, independent and has an extremely dry wit.” The woman drips with sexual confidence, but still struggles to gain the approval of her strict military father. The storyline follows the trials and tribulations of her family, love life, career, and her on-again/off-again relationship with Ani.
Ani’s job as a fashion photographer leads her to move to New York City and travel the globe. Gina keeps Ani hanging on a thread, and cannot provide Ani with the type of commitment she desires.
Warning: minor plot spoilers ahead.
The first episode opens with bras and boots strewn across the floor, and none other than Otalia — er, Gina and Ani — making out in Gina’s bed the morning after they ran into each other at the Grill and, obviously slept together. Blame it on the a-a-a-a-alcohol.
Ani has been back from New York for a few days but didn’t know if she should telephone her former boo with the way they left things last time (i.e. dumped and depressed).
Naturally, after lesbians have sex, they have to have “the talk.”
Ani: What exactly was last night?
Ani: What does that mean?
Gina: Exciting, pleasurable, I’d like to do it again —
Ani: You’re such a smart ass, I forgot.
This sums up the reason why they’re not together, and Ani’s frustration with Gina’s noncommittal ways. Though Ani tries to make Gina stay in bed and talk about their complicated boot-knocking, Gina’s phone rings — the ringtone is “Poker Face” by Lada Gaga — and she informs Ani that she has a meeting and doesn’t even have one minute to spare to talk about relationship things with her doe-eyed lover. So cruel.
How can Gina resist a beautiful woman who wears her bathrobe because “it smells like [her]?” Poor Ani is still waiting for the day when Gina will realize that she made a huge mistake by letting Ani go. She tells Gina that she will never give up on her, and when Gina can’t understand why Ani loves her so much, Ani explains that she can see her so clearly “through all [her] bullshit.” Gina shows no sign of relenting, so I guess we have our answer for what last night was. Just a fling.
Gina: I don’t think I can be what you need me to be.
Ani: I know.
Gina invites her to take a shower with her and Ani concedes. But hey, it doesn’t make Ani weak — who wouldn’t want to take a shower with Crystall Chappell, regardless of the way she treats you?
The episode sets the tone for the rest of the season, which is sure to be filled with heartbreak, new romances, and family issues. Gina’s little brother Owen, played by Galen Gering, points out, “[Ani] never stopped loving you either, so be careful with her.” The torrid tale of unrequited love between Ani and Gina is the central theme, though each woman meets a potential love interest along the way.
Chappell, co-creator and co-executive producer, has helped to create a believable storyline with real, developed characters, resulting in a wildly entertaining series. Fans have the added bonus of seeing Chappell and Leccia interact with each other in physical ways that were never afforded them in the CBS daytime drama.
Though Otalia fans will undoubtedly campaign heavily for the two women to ultimately get back together, the ride along the way looks to be dramatic, sexy and hilarious.
The first episode is free online, but with a $9.99 subscription, fans can watch the whole first season.
Here’s the first episode:
What did you think of the first webisode? Is Venice a winner?