‘The L Word: Generation Q’ Brought Jacqueline Toboni’s Queerness Full Circle.
Jacqueline Toboni identifies as a “queer, lesbian, gay, I don’t care, bi.” Still, for the longest of times, she kept her love for The L Word a secret.
In conversation with The Cut, Toboni recalled she was first introduced to the much-loved series by one of her high school peers who gave her the first season of The L Word as a birthday present during her sophomore year.
“She was like, ‘Just until you figure it out.’ I was dying inside,” Toboni explained.
Toboni spent the two years before 2020 waiting, if not needing, to be on the reboot. For other queer women age twenty or above, The L Word meant a lot to the actress.
Even though Toboni made it onboard The L Word: Generation Q on her merits, she made it a point to extend her gratitude to that one person who introduced her to the series.
A Possible Way Forward
In another interview, this one with NBC News, Toboni disclosed that the girl who had introduced her to the series was the only openly gay girl in her class.
For Toboni, the show let her know that more women like her were out there in the world. She did not have to conform to the "bombshell blonde in heels and a dress" narrative — a mold she never felt like she fit into.
Getting connected to the show as a viewer also made her feel like it was a show she could potentially be on someday.
Toboni, who now shares a home with her partner Kassandra Clementi and their rescue dog Finn, admitted that watching her dreams manifest itself into reality had been an unbelievable experience.
A Fan in the Family
Even now that she'd made it into the cast of the show, she admitted to the outlet that she could not help but see herself as a fan on a regular basis, especially when she spent time with Leisha Hailey.
Sometimes I definitely feel like we’re a family, but I’m still such a fan.
In the show, Toboni played Sarah Finley, a fun-loving production assistant who works on a talk show hosted by Alice (Leisha Hailey). Toboni was one amongst several other characters, in their 20s, who were introduced into the reboot.
The Original Show Was a Trailblazer
The original lesbian drama aired on Showtime from 2004 to 2009 and was labeled as "nothing less than revolutionary" for its time.
The show was the first time queer women saw themselves represented in mainstream media. The show gave viewers an unprecedented peek into lesbian life, played out by a cast of predominantly LGBTQ characters.
The show also called for a lot of heat from critics who claimed that the show was only concerned with the lives of white, cisgender, middle-class lesbians living in Los Angeles.
The show was also called out for leaving the transgender community behind because the only main trans character in the story had a tragic story arc, and on top of that, she was played out by a cisgender woman.
Toboni, on the other hand, was not so critical. She believed the show could not be judged on the basis of where society ended up 10-15 years into the future.
The outlet also reported that the show, despite reviving some original cast members, was meant to be a distinct project. Hopefully, this iteration will iron out some of the leftover creases from the original.