Episode 22: Girls Kissing Girls

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We were going to title this episode “The Lesbian Kiss Episode,” but that struck us as a bit too formal. In fact, “Lesbian Kiss Episode,” is a TV term for a phenomenon that hit its stride in the ’90s: it’s that very special episode that airs during sweeps, featuring a guest star that comes along to lock lady lips with a series frontrunner, just to disappear back into the ether. THERE IS A WIKIPEDIA PAGE, okayyyy? Too many shows have done it for us to cover ALL of them, but one did it in a somewhat unique way. Guess which! Yes, it WAS Roseanne. Here, we talk about about the time Rosie gets a smooch from Nancy’s girlfriend (or “gal pal,” in ’90s speak), the inimitable gay-for-pay Mariel Hemingway. This original series episode is titled “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” and though it has nothing to do with gays in the military, it did air very shortly after President Clinton signed the policy disaster of the same name. We touch on a few other highlights of this TV phenomenon, from Picket Fences to Star Trek Deep Space Nine. Slap on a fresh layer of chapstick and lean in closer, won’t you?

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