Alice Pieszecki

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Alice Pieszecki
Alice Pieszecki; L-Word Official Photo.jpg
First appearance Pilot (episode 1.01)
Last appearance L Word(episode 6.08)
Created by Ilene Chaiken
Portrayed by Leisha Hailey
Information
Gender Female
Occupation Journalist
Radio Personailty (2.09-4.07)
Host on the Look (5.12-6.03)
Relatives Lenore Pieszecki (mother)

Alice Pieszecki is a fictional character on the Showtime television network series The L Word, shown nationally in the United States. She is played by American actress Leisha Hailey. Alice lives in Los Angeles, California, and mostly hangs out in West Hollywood. During the first seasons, she is often seen with her best friends, Shane McCutcheon (Katherine Moennig) and Dana Fairbanks (Erin Daniels). Further into the show, she befriends Helena Peabody (Rachel Shelley), and has romantic relationships with various recurrent lead characters, most notably Dana Fairbanks (Erin Daniels) and Tasha Williams (Rose Rollins). She was listed in AfterEllen.com's Top 50 Favorite Female TV Characters.[1]

Storylines[edit]

Backstory[edit]

Alice is a journalist for LA Magazine. Among her group of lesbian friends, she is the only self-proclaimed bisexual. Her mother Lenore is an actress, and apparently the only one in the family who accepts Alice's sexuality. Alice is estranged from her two siblings, who disapprove of homosexuality, as well as her father, whom she simply describes as "distant".

Alice is obsessed with The Chart, a recompilation of all the relationships and one-night stands which she knows of, and how this network of affairs is linked to her. Alice strongly believes everyone is sleeping with everyone else, and her chart is the most valuable evidence supporting her theory.

2004-09[edit]

Alice identifies as bisexual, she has a few flings, one being with a lesbian-identified man, Lisa. She soon decides that her true feelings lie in a secret relationship with Dana Fairbanks, who was then engaged to her fiance Tanya. After Dana and Tanya split up, Alice and Dana continue a relationship until the end of the season two, after which Alice has a breakdown. Dana leaves her for her ex Lara, and although their intimacy is never shown on-screen, it is implied that they later get back together when Dana finds out she is dying of breast cancer. Dana dies, Alice has a short-term relationship with Lara out of simple comfort.

Alice begins video podcasting on OurChart and discovers a woman named Papi who has the highest amount of sexual encounters on the chart. Through her, she later meets and starts dating Tasha Williams, a Captain in the Army National Guard. During a confrontation between Papi's friends in Alice's apartment, Tasha accidentally hits her while trying to break up a fight and has to take her to the hospital. While at the hospital Alice learns of Tasha's military background and the two get into an argument over a disagreement about the ethics of the war in Iraq. Despite their differences in politics, they choose to continue their relationship.

The following season, after Alice is seen in public with Tasha by one of her homophobic subordinates at work and openly has a lover's disagreement with her while on base she is drawn into Tasha's Army investigation for homosexual conduct.[2] During the investigation, two Army investigators come to her apartment and start to invade her privacy looking for evidence of Tasha having a lesbian relationship with her. Alice asks the officers to leave and then proceeds to hide evidence of her relationship with Tasha in case they return with a search warrant. In response, Tasha goes to her lawyer's house and berates him for not giving her prior warning of the visit by the investigators.

Alice is invited to a party for closeted homosexual celebrities and, despite signing a non-disclosure agreement, captures a video of Daryl Brewer, an NBA player, in an intimate moment with another man. Later, Tasha and Alice watch Brewer make homophobic remarks on the news in response to another NBA player coming out, and Tasha disapproves. Alice misinterprets her remarks and puts the incriminating video on her podcast. The video goes viral and Alice is the center of a media storm for outing Brewer.[3] Alice defends her actions on a national news broadcast. This angers Tasha because it jeopardizes her Army investigation and opens another rift in her relationship with Alice.

Shortly after, Alice and Tasha decide they can no longer be together. During Tasha's separation board for homosexual conduct, Alice testifies in front of Colonel Gillian Davis and makes a statement about being outed that caused Davis to back off on trying to get Tasha discharged. However, Tasha decided that she no longer wanted to serve in the Army if she cannot be with the person she loves and admits to the board that she is indeed in love with Alice, effectively outing herself and resulting in her discharge.

After Tasha is discharged from the Army under Don't ask, don't tell, they continue their relationship where it left off, though it's a little unsteady. Just about the same time, Alice gets a host spot on a TV show called "The Look", where she meets Clea Mason, a New Zealand clothing designer. Alice develops an instant attraction to her, but decides to resist those feelings in order to work on her relationship with Tasha.

As Alice and Tasha's relationship continues to wane, she tries her best to make things work. An encounter with Gabby Deveaux at Papi's house on the season premiere triggers Alice to admit her troubled past, and to refuse to part ways with Tasha. They are shown visiting the show's recurrent therapist[4] Dan Foxworthy, who decrees their relationship to be ill-fated. Nonetheless they try to stick together.

Also on this season, Alice has decided to venture into the film business by writing a treatment on a killer idea she had. A potential conflict of interest with Jenny is hinted as a not-very-excited Schecter is suggested as a reviewer for the treatment by Tina. Jenny later diminishes Alice's treatment as unoriginal. But when Jenny eventually writes and sells a script featuring the exact premise of Alice's treatment, Alice is furious and gives an ultimatum to Shane, who is now romantically involved with Jenny, to dump Jenny or lose her long-standing friendship with Alice.

In her job as a host on The Look, Alice reads a letter on the air from a girl whose brother was killed in a hate crime because he sent a love letter to another boy. This results in her being fired, but also results in a call from a woman named Jamie Chen, who works at a Gay and Lesbian Center, to help talk the letter writer off a ledge.

Alice becomes more heavily involved with the center after doing this, and she and Tasha become fast friends with Jamie. It becomes obvious to some of Alice's friends that a three-way crush appears to be forming between Alice, Tasha and Jamie. But as time passes, Alice begins to suspect that the attraction between Tasha and Jamie, who are much more closely matched than either woman with Alice, is stronger. After the three friends lose a dance contest at the charity dance for the Gay & Lesbian Center that they orchestrated, Alice tearfully tells Tasha to pursue a relationship with Jamie, and then again presents this idea during a later lunch meeting with the pair. Tasha does not want to do this, but Alice decides to give her time to make this decision, in effect letting her go.

When Tasha does not immediately contact her, Alice sadly assumes that she has chosen Jamie. She attends Bette and Tina's going away party (they are moving to New York), and tells her friends that she has decided to make peace with Jenny for Shane's sake. However, it is Alice who first alerts the party guests to the discovery of Jenny's body in Bette and Tina's pool. Fortunately, Tasha arrives at the party and comforts Alice. The series ends with the group of women being questioned by interrogating police officers regarding Jenny's death.

Due to the proposed premise of the planned L Word spinoff The Farm, it is assumed that Alice was supposed to be convicted of murdering Jenny (However, Showtime's decision to pass on hosting the new program might negate this development).

The Interrogation Tapes[edit]

Over a month after the series ends, footage of Alice's police interrogation appears on Showtime's L Word website ("The Interrogation Tapes"). In the footage, Alice explains to the interrogating police officers how she met Bette years ago, and how her own bisexuality still exists (even though she is more attracted to women). She then blurts out how she didn't understand what any of this line of questioning had to do with who killed Jenny, which prompts Sergeant Duffy to reply with a question of why Alice assumed the death was in fact a murder.[5]

The Farm spin-off[edit]

A pilot for a proposed spin-off of The L Word entitled "The Farm," starring Leisha Hailey as Alice, was filmed. Substantially different from its parent show, the story revolved around Alice going to prison[6] before later centering on the jail setting itself with an entire cast of new characters. It was announced in April, 2009 that Showtime had declined to pick up The Farm as a series.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "AfterEllen.com's Top 50 Favorite Female TV Characters". AfterEllen.com. February 27, 2012. Retrieved June 24, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Look Out, Here They Come". Showtime. 2008. Archived from the original on 21 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-29. 
  3. ^ "Lookin' At You, Kid". Showtime. 2008. Archived from the original on 21 February 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-29. 
  4. ^ "Least Likely". Showtime. 2009-01-25. Archived from the original on 30 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-29. 
  5. ^ "The L Word Interrogation Tapes: Alice". Showtime. Archived from the original on 17 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-23. 
  6. ^ "Showtime Confirms "L Word" Spinoff Details at TCA Press Tour". Showtime. 2009-01-15. Archived from the original on 19 January 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-29. 
  7. ^ Annie Barrett (2009-04-03). "Showtime passes on L Word spinoff (whew!) and Matthew Perry series (sniff!)". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on 5 April 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-03. 

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