In a Bushwick, Brooklyn venue called Secret Project Robot, about a hundred people, mostly women, cram themselves into an otherwise spacious room and wait for the next question. This is L Word Trivia, a semi-regular queer night started by Minnie Bennett, a filmmaker, and Lily Marotta, an actress/comedian, after the pair noticed they couldn’t stop talking to each other about the iconic 2002 series. Though mostly confident that the event would garner some interest, neither was entirely prepared for the enthusiasm and following it would generate.
I’ve known Minnie and Lily for many years, but the night we shot this footage was my first time attending their event. Social media indicated to me how popular it had become, but nothing quite prepared me for how packed the room would be. Navigating the crowd with my camera proved to be impossible, as throngs of people had thoroughly staked out their spots on the floor.
Though I have seen The L Word in its entirety, I immediately got the impression that all the time I spent sneaking my mom’s TIVOed L Word episodes late at night (a queer tale old as time) wouldn’t do me much good against these superfans (spoiler alert: it didn’t).
From the stage, Lily and Minnie formulate hard-hitting questions, like “What did Alice do when she found out Shane and Jenny f-ed?” and sometimes have comedians come up and perform a set with an L Word focus. Afterwards, the whole affair eventually devolves into a dance party, which is one of the trivia night’s strengths. A queer night with a speed for everyone: cerebral trivia, social interaction, comedy, and nightlife-focused dancing/debauchery.
Both Bennett and Marotta agree that The L Word, which is at times comically melodramatic, is not a perfect representation of queer culture, but is a chunk of pop culture that lesbians can bond over and “high-five” about. The founding duo was particularly excited when asked about the upcoming reboot. “Do we even have the hours?” Marotta gasped.
As of November 2017, the reboot was still in the early developmental stages at Showtime, but a showrunner had finally been selected. As we learned making the clip above, there are some fans in Brooklyn who can’t wait to study it intently.