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Lip Service - Sex, lies and true love in modern Scotland

Sex, lies and true love in modern Scotland, BBC Three’s new seductive relationship drama Lip Service, follows the lives of a group of twenty-something lesbians.

Thu, 07 Apr 2011 16:37:11 GMT | Updated 5 years today

Lip Service Episode 6

Comedian and broadcaster Rosie Wilby shares her thoughts about the final episode of BBC3's Lip Service

So it's all over - for now at least. Lip Service's finale left the (closet) door wide open for a second series. In an episode subtitled 'Ex-Girlfriends! What a pain in the arse they are! Grrr!' (blink and you missed this caption) Cat finally got it on with still strangely charmless Frankie while Sam was marooned in the pub. Fortunately they were horizontal for much of this, rendering their height different less problematic. Perhaps a friend of mine was right when she once said 'it all evens out when you're lying down'. If the 'bad messed up ex versus good stable girlfriend' allegory continues to play out I'm looking forward to some full-on 'rucksacks at dawn' fisticuffs.

Will Cat ever make her mind up? Only a few weeks ago, she was married to David Tennant and, um, dead. Ok this was a different show on a different channel but the unfortunate scheduling makes her more of a floozy in my mind. And there was good news for unlucky Tess who got together with the peeping tom-ess across the road whose idea of a date seems to be a darkened room full of broken computers. Yet Tess seemed quite happy with this. Perhaps I was wrong all those years ago to flunk my degree in Electronic Engineering.

The series really did improve over its short run, the dialogue got sharper and the sex scenes steamier and more believable. Even Hillary Clinton said 'it gets better' on youtube a few weeks ago when addressing the LGBT community. I assumed she must've been talking about Lip Service, perhaps having been privy to a preview DVD.

What I can't believe is how much furore and discussion the series has caused amongst lesbians. We're so starved of adequate representation on TV that when a show like this does come along we have unrealistic expectations and all want to see ourselves in it. Perhaps if we had more of a breadth of real-life and fictional lesbians to watch, Lip Service could get away more easily with being simple frothy fun.

Rosie Wilby



Lip Service Episode 1: Comedian and broadcaster Rosie Wilby shares her thoughts about the first episode of BBC3's Lip Service

There's been a fair bit of press hype about this new Glasgow-set soapy lezzie drama (that already has me thinking of shower sex scenes). However as the first episode is about to air, my girlfriend decides to go to bed. She does however pop in halfway thru to check if I'm masturbating (!). I'm not. However, I do feel slightly unfaithful. This first episode does have some of the awkward feel of a first date.

Prime candidate for embarrassing mishaps is Tess who breaks into her ex girlfriend's flat (we've all done it) and gets caught hiding under the bed - she is my favourite already. Hats off to writer Harriet Braun for creating a character that shows lesbians are not all moody, troubled types and some really do have the GSOH a zillion personal ads claim to seek. You need to when your day job involves dressing up as a fizzy drink. Yet it is whilst wearing said costume that Tess actually manages to pull a 'straight' TV presenter scarily reminiscent of Christine Bleakley. Doomed romance? I think so. I once got off with a girl in a college panto when we shared a moment in a horse costume but it was too hard to shake off the image.

The main love story is that between sex-crazed caddish Frankie, suddenly back in town after disappearing two years earlier, and fragile control freak Cat. However, their reunion scene is rendered unintentionally hilarious by the extreme height difference between the two actresses. How did these two get together in the first place? Did their eyes meet across a seesaw? Maybe they broke up because they couldn't share clothes. And the fact that Frankie has a tendency towards doing it standing up makes me ponder on the practicalities of this. Will the inevitable romance-rekindling scene involve a stepladder?

More importantly, do women like Frankie really exist? Even in my slutty year (2004) I never shagged within touching distance of a dead body. And I don't remember being in such a rush I never removed any clothes - mind you this is Glasgow i.e freezing. And whenever you have casual sex, the lesbian rules dictate that you will see them the next day on the bus - I promise you, you can't love and leave and get off that easy. Perhaps that's why Frankie absconded to New York. Without calling Cat for weeks! If I was Cat, I would not be talking to her. Go for the sensible hardworking cop instead!! How many people did you have to talk to on Gaydar before you found someone normal? But my feeling is that her hearts not in it when she sighs 'I'm too old to be dating fuck ups'.

We'll see what happens over the next few weeks.
Rosie Wilby

This article first appeared on in 2010

Rosie presents Out In South London every Tuesday on Resonance 104.4FM at 6.30pm

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