The L Word

Season 3 Episode 9

Lead, Follow, Or Get Out of the Way

Aired Sunday 9:00 PM Mar 05, 2006 on Showtime

Episode Recap

Opening Teaser: Los Angeles, seven months ago. Dana is leaving Alice's place – she's crying. Alice starts to go after Dana, but stops herself in the hallway. She watches Dana go down the hallway and cries too. Dana walks to a car where Lara is waiting in the driver's seat. She tells Lara that it's worse to be the who breaks the heart than being the one who gets their heart broken. But Dana's not ready to be in another relationship just yet. She pulls back as Lara tries to kiss her: she's not ready. She didn't break up with Alice so she could be with Lara; she broke up with her because it wasn't working. Lara says that she's waited this long, so she can wait a little longer: "We have all the time in the world." Bette is at the Buddhist retreat. It's silent, and peaceful, and Bette is silent, but not quite peaceful. She looks exhausted and irritated. Helena, Dylan, and Helena's kids are having lunch at a restaurant. Her daughter, Jun Ying, wants to know if Dylan can go with them to their swimming lesson. Helena tells her that Dylan can come anywhere with them. She gives Dylan's shoulder a squeeze and says, "Anywhere in the world." Dylan doesn't want her to do "that" in public because she's not comfortable with it. Dana and Alice are window-shopping. They stop to stare at a plastic mannequin who doesn't have any hair. Dana says it's like looking in a mirror, but Alice tells her that bald is beautiful. Dana thinks so, too, and thanks Alice for coming with her. She also tells her that she likes doing stuff with her: "You're, like, my favorite person to do stuff with." Alice asks her if she misses Lara. Dana replies that she does and that it's different with Alice. Alice says it's because they are best friends. It took her a long time to get there but Dana is her best friend. Dana is glad that they are back together... as friends. Jenny and Max are putting up fliers at The Planet for an "'80s Trans Prom" at Wax to raise money for Max's top surgery. Kit shows up and wants to talk to Max. She tells him that she understands some of his struggle and she respects the choice he's making in his life. But still, she's worried about him. She asks him if removing his breasts and changing himself into a man is going to solve all his problems. He denies that, but explains that people are going to start seeing him for who he is. Kit replies, "We're losing our warriors, our greatest women. And I don't wanna lose you." He tells her that he wants to feel whole – he wants his outside to match his inside. But Kit tells him that he'll be giving up the most precious thing in the world – being a woman. Dr. Susan Love signs Alice's book, and Alice thanks her for it. Then they all talk about chemo and all the complimentary therapies. Then Dr. Love tells them about her foundation for breast cancer patients. Dana says that she wants to help. Alice's arrives at Wax. Her contribution to the prom is six huge cupcakes that look like breasts. Jenny greets her. Shane tries to help Carmen set up the kissing both, but Carmen doesn't want help. Shane asks her what her problem is because she's been like this for days. Carmen tells her that Shane is never really there whenever they are "making love". When Shane denies that, Carmen asks her when she 'came' the last time. But Shane thinks that has nothing to do with it. Carmen believes that "somewhere deep down" Shane has realized that she's "in this nice, little committed relationship now", and it pisses her off, and now she's punishing Carmen. Carmen walks off and tells Jenny that the place looks great – if her prom had looked that good, she would have attended. Jenny wants to know why Carmen didn't go to her prom. Carmen tells her that she was attending a porn festival with Eva Torres, who taught her how to sixty-nine. Alice overhears this; she's jealous because she went to her prom and it sucked. She then asks Shane if she went to hers, but Jenny tells them that Shane didn't finish high school. Max tells his prom story, and then gets upset because one of the decorations is a big pin-the-whatever-on-the-tranny, and of course one of the pieces is a penis. Max says, "Jenny, you can't do this. It's disrespectful." All Jenny can say is, "But... but it goes... inside the pants." One of the monks tells Bette that this is an opportunity to discuss anything that has come up during her meditations. She's asks Bette whether she's having any trouble with the silence or the meditation or anything. Bette just shakes her head, but it's very obvious that she's not fine at all. Tina and Helena are having a swimming lesson with their kids in Tina and Bette's pool. There's also a guy, Henry, with his son Mikey. Tina likes Henry immediately, and says that Angelica loves being around men. When the other kids are busy in the pool, Henry offers to hold Angelica. Tina says that if he's OK with Angelica for a while, she'll "go and make the kids some snacks". He tells her to go; he'll be fine with Angelica. Shane and Carmen are at the Morales house. Shane likes being part of the family. She brings Carmen's abuela (grandma) her cigars and gets a hug in return. Abuela notices Shane's tattoo, and then Carmen's mom notices that Shane and Carmen have matching tattoos. She asks Shane to help her in the kitchen. In the kitchen, she asks Shane if they are coming to dinner the next night. She tells her that she has to come because there is someone she wants her to meet. Alice, Tina and Helena are at the '80s prom party wearing '80s clothes and hair. They talk about how much they've already learned at the tranny prom: Helena didn't know it was possible to go through life using gender-neutral pronouns. As an example, Alice tells them what she heard today: "'Ze doesn't like my new genitals, so I told hir to fuck hirself.' I also learned that a vagina is a 'bonus hole'." Tina adds, "Or a cockpit." Alice grins at the woman at the kissing booth, and of course, Tina and Helena notice. The woman's name is Chandra, and she has already asked Alice out. Tina and Helena tell Alice to go on the date, but she's unsure. Tina tells her that Dana will be fine. They all look over to Dana who's talking to a transman about the scars from his top surgery. Max greets Alice, Tina and Helena. Dana goes over to Alice and Helena and gets clued in to the Chandra situation; she encourages Alice to go out with her. Helena, who is now at the kissing booth with Chandra, calls Alice over. She gives Chandra some money and tells Alice to "have fun". Tina dances with Max. He sees Jenny dancing with someone else and freaks out; he starts hollering at her and calling her "my girlfriend". Jenny stomps off and as Max starts to follow her, Shane interrupts, "Don't hurt her. Or I'll fuckin' cut your tits off." But Max goes after Jenny anyway and apologizes. Jenny tells him, "When I realized that I might be gay, I didn't rule out men. But if I'm going to be with a guy, I'm not going to be with some aggressive macho male pig who has different standards of behavior for himself than he does for me." Max promises to try to be a better man Tina's phone rings: it's Henry. They make plans to see each other the next day. When she hangs up the phone, Helena asks her if she wants a drink. Shane and Carmen are in line to get their prom photo taken. They talk about Carmen's mom, Mercedes, and wonder who this person is she wants Shane to meet. Carmen gets into an argument with Shane about how she can be intimate with Carmen's family, but not with her. Shane asks Carmen what Abuela said about their tattoos. Carmen says that she believes that they are friends. As Shane and Carmen pose, Shane announces she's going to take Spanish lessons. Dana and Alice are also posing for their prom picture, so do Tina and Helena, and Jenny and Max. Angus brings Kit her coffee at The Planet. He wants Kit to continue the conversation they had in the recording studio. She says she loves him and wants to be with him and if she were going to marry anyone, she'd marry him. But then she says that as long as gay people can't get married, she can't either – she doesn't want to use a system that discriminates against the very people she loves the most. Angus tells her that is exactly why he wants her to marry him. He kisses her and then tells her that they can just live together instead. Max has $3452, which is not enough for the surgery. He rages and acts like an asshole again. Jenny says that she doesn't know him – he's becoming a completely different person. Max tells her that she doesn't understand: he can't wait for years and years. He's freaking out, because he's not OK in this body. Jenny replies, "And when you get the body you need, who's gonna live inside of it? Is it gonna be that sweet, kind, compassionate, gentle person that I met, or is it gonna be this motherfucking monster?" Tina and Henry are at the beach with their kids. Tina tells Henry that she loves Bette, but can't help the way she's feeling. Bette walks to an outdoors shower. She's freezing and miserable. She opens the shower door, but then decides against it and walks away. Dylan is filming Helena. She tells her that she's "so beautiful". Helena asks Dylan where Danny is; Dylan replies that he's in Minneapolis. Dylan wants Helena to talk about their project. Helena says, "How can I talk about our project when I want you to fuck me so badly?" Dylan asks her if she's saying that Dylan has to fuck her before they can talk business. Helena's getting into the roleplaying and replies, "You have to fuck me before you can expect to get anything from me." Dylan says that Helena has to tell her what she wants then. Helena wants the camera. She takes it and starts to film Dylan. She tells Dylan to take her shirt off. She puts the camera on a counter and walks over to Dylan. She tells her that she's not getting anything from her unless she does exactly what Helena tells her: "You're going to fuck me and you're going to love every second of it." They start to make out. Carmen's mom tries to hook Shane up with a carpet-cleaning guy. Carmen loses her temper and blurts out that she's Shane's girlfriend. She also says that they live in the same house and sleep in the same bed. Mercedes tells the two of them to get out of her house. Abuela tries to intervene, but Carmen's mom says, "Mejor puta que lesbiana." ("Better a whore than a lesbian.") Dylan says goodbye to Helena. Dylan seems sad about something. When Helena is gone, Danny emerges from another room, asking "Well?" Dylan replies, "I think I got it." Dana's lying on her couch. Alice comes in. She got Dana the complete Dirk Bogarde collection and the whole John Hughes collection. Alice asks Dana if she doesn't want her to go on the date with Chandra, but Dana tells her to go on her date and have a good time. Dana is just cranky and not feeling very good. Just as Alice is on her way out, Dana calls her and asks her if she can get her a blanket. When the door closes, Dana looks sad and lost. Henry and his son have been hanging out with Tina and Angelica the whole day. Henry tells his son to go and wait in the car. When Mickey is gone, Henry and Tina start kissing... Tina ends up inviting Henry and Mikey to stay for dinner. Bette is attending one of her meditation groups. She has a hard time coping with all the feelings that come up in her. Helena is at the beach. She's leaving a voice mail for Dylan, and it's not the first. Just as she hangs up, a guy shows up to give her a "sexual harassment subpoena". All Helen can say is, "God". Chandra and Alice are having dinner together. They are talking about the funny phenomenon that is lesbian exes: "Where we maintain deep, intimate, sexless relationships with our past lovers." Alice's cell rings: it's Dana. She tells Dana that she'll be right back after dinner. Chandra asks whether Dana wants to get back together with Alice. Alice just says it's a loaded question and it's hard to tell with everything Dana's going through. Then Dana calls again, but this time it's urgent and Alice has to leave. When Alice arrives, Dana is a shivering and quivering. She's genuinely sick. Alice doesn't know what she's supposed to do. Dana tells her to call the doctor. Shane and Carmen talk about the familial outing. Shane doesn't want to lose Carmen's family. She doesn't want them to hate her and she doesn't want them to blame her for this. Carmen blurts out, "What do you know about family?" Just then, the phone rings. Alice is calling to tell Shane that Dana's in the hospital with an infection. Tina checks on the kids: they are sound asleep. Tina and Henry start kissing. They take off their clothes and start making out. When Henry tries to go down on Tina, she says, "That's not what I want". She reaches into his pants and shortly after that, they start to fuck against the door. At the retreat, Bette sneaks away to make a phone call. She leaves a message: "Hello Angelica, it's your Mama B calling. I just wanted to call you to tell you that I love you and I miss you. I just... I can't stand this anymore. I mean, I'm supposed to be on this silent retreat, and everything just seems so loud. My loneliness is just so loud, and I can't stand it. I just want to come home. I want my art, I want my books, I want my things, I want my house. I just want to be able to kiss you goodnight. I just... I want my life back. I want, I want, I want, I want, I want, I want, I want..." Dana and Alice are at the hospital. As she is wheeled away on a gurney, Dana reaches for Alice and says, "Don't go". Alice tells her that she's going to be right there waiting – she's not going anywhere.