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Loving, Lesbo Style: 'The L Word' Returns

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America’s favorite TV lesbians returned Sunday during the third season premiere of Showtime's The L Word. The show’s party line has always been universality: Despite the characters’ sexual orientation, these lovely LA ladies are just like us. Kinda.

Don’t we all date people thinking about gender reassignment surgery? Or what about lesbian vampires? How about stalking our exes and setting up makeshift shrines? LAist will maybe cop to the last one – maybe. But the other storylines are in the works for L Word fans, and we'll buy them as much as a chained-up guy in a basement on Wisteria Lane.

The show picked up six months after the last episode. Bette (Jennifer Beals) and Tina (Laurel Holloman), the power couple, are wading through the waters of parenthood with new daughter, Angelica, while trying to rekindle their romance. They go to a sex therapist, who chastises them for calling each other “Mama B” and “Mama T” respectively. Meanwhile, they’re equally chastised by a social worker for not baby-proofing the house. (Uh, hello, though we don’t have experience in this area either, we know that babies and sharp objects don’t mix.)

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The Latina beauty Carmen (Sarah Shahi) takes the seemingly reformed lesbian Lothario Shane (Kate Moennig) home to meet her traditional Mexican family, who are blissfully ignorant of (or just choose to ignore) their daughter’s orientation. In a particularly funny scene, Carmen’s mother makes Shane try on a white dress for an upcoming quinceañera, and Carmen is only too happy to help her get dressed.

In the other main storylines, troubled Jenny (Mia Kirshner) is home in Skokie, Ill., recuperating from a breakdown last season. She's getting ready to return to LA with new butch girlfriend Moira (new cast member Daniela Sea) in tow. Moira is about to undergo her own personal Transamerica-like journey. And finally, Alice (Leisha Hailey), writer and KCRW personality, is popping antidepressants while stalking her former girlfriend Dana (Erin Daniels) and her new love. (Kudos to Hailey for a comic-tinged performance that could have been so cringe-inducing instead.)

After one episode, this season already looks more promising than the downer of a second season. Sure, it's no Queer as Folk, but we'll still take the over-the-top plots, dropped storylines and sometimes iffy writing that results in a whiplash-like mix of comedy and drama. It's just like life when we forget to take our Xanax.

Maybe we're not so different after all.

The L Word airs Sundays at 10 PM on Showtime.