‘The L Word’: Nobody Rocks a Power Suit and Cufflinks Like Jennifer Beals

Shane may be the resident heartthrob of “The L Word,” but no character more embodies Showtime’s Los Angeles-set lesbian melodrama than Bette Porter.

Accomplished, stubborn, magnetic, and self-destructive, Bette instantly became the archetypical 21st century “power dyke.” She fills out a Jil Sander power suit as confidently as she tops her pregnant wife; casually drops names of the myriad women artists in her private collection; and now — added to her resume for the show’s next iteration, “The L Word: Generation Q” — runs a savvy mayoral campaign.Of course, there would be no Bette Porter without Jennifer Beals.

A luminous and deeply intelligent actor, Beals’ naturalism, humor, and deeply felt performance grounded the original series, spearheading its ascension beyond mere sexy soap opera, and cementing its place as the most influential piece of lesbian culture of the 21st century.The role has defined the last decade of Beals’ career

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