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Back to School: 10 Lessons to Learn From Our Favorite Pop Culture Lesbian Schoolgirls

10 Lessons to Learn From Our Favorite Pop Culture Lesbian Schoolgirls

10 Lessons to Learn From Our Favorite Pop Culture Lesbian Schoolgirls

It's that time of year again! Finish those last-minute reading lists, grab your backpack, and take this advice from our favorite fictitious schoolgirls.


Say goodbye to summertime and hello to school, everyone! That's right, these peaceful days of vacation and relaxation are coming to an end, and now it's time to face the grind. While we all know trading bikinis for uniforms and beaches for cafeterias may not be the most exciting endeavor, we're here to help make the transition just a little bit easier with some advice we've learned over the years from our favorite on-screen lesbian schoolgirls. Beware, a few spoilers lie ahead, but don't let that stop you from heeding these lessons carefully (though perhaps with a grain of salt). Now, here's to the best/gayest school year ever! 

(Thanks to Karen Kerr for her contribution)

10. Keep your friends close and your enemies closer (because you may want to sleep with them one day). You may have noticed that many lesbian films/tv shows don’t exactly have happy endings, but D.E.B.S. leaves us on an adorably cheerful note when the formerly villainous Lucy changes her ways and runs off with good-girl Amy, who had previously been writing her thesis on just how evil Lucy was. So while the power of love can cause people to do some pretty crazy things, as this list has definitely proven, it can also inspire someone to change their illegal ways and become an upstanding citizen. Oh, the power of love! Not to mention those D.E.B.S uniforms are undeniably bangin’ and, even better, the entire movie is on Youtube. Homework can wait.

9. Try not to challenge your ex-girlfriend’s new suitor to a duel. Yes, a break up can be hard, and clearly Lost and Delirious’ Paulie isn’t exactly of sound mind, but if something should go wrong with a girlfriend, attempt to refrain from aggressive fencing and keeping wild birds as close companions. Physical violence is never the answer, no matter how distraught you may be. Lost and Delirious definitely has a lot of dark moments, so really, just avoid doing nearly anything that happens in this film.


8. Don’t write off an old crush, to an extent. There’s certainly a time to move on, but if we’ve learned anything from Emily Fields in Pretty Little Liars it’s that a lot of seemingly hopeless waiting and being attacked by an anonymous teen terrorist may actually pay off in some respects. Emily not only got to reunite with the former love of her life, Ali, but the two even hooked up (and won Best Couple on our Big Lesbian Summer of Love poll!) Of course, love/survival is a rocky road for anyone living in Rosewood, so it isn’t exactly smooth sailing for Emison right now. But one of the best things about Pretty Little Liars is learning everything not to do to maintain a successful relationship, and it never fails us there!

7. Choose rendezvous locations wisely. In yet another cautionary schoolgirl tale, Loving Annabelle's bad girl title character seduces/falls in love with her by-the-book boarding school teacher Simone. After sharing an emotional but chaste moment at Simone's beach house Annabelle and Simone give in to their passion on school property. We're pretty sure they got those two locations backwards, which they too realize when Simone is arrested the next morning. Secondary lesson here: check that alarm clocks are set if you are having a sexy times sleepover with your teacher. Third lesson: maybe don't sleep with your teacher.



6. Don’t skip class...unless it’s to play hooky with the badass bad girl you’ve been crushing on. When South of Nowhere's Ashley Davies (or your real-life equivalent) shows up to your door asking you to skip class for a day at the beach, sometimes you’ve just got to put sensible choices aside and take the plunge. Not only did good-girl/sexually curious Spencer get to spend some time with her crush, but she also experienced some valuable realizations about herself that day. This episode, “Girl’s Guide to Dating,” also featured the unforgettable (if slightly inaccurate), ‘Are You Hot for Girls’ quiz, which, if you're a SON fan, you’ve definitely taken (far too seriously) along with Spencer in your mind. And if you've somehow missed this opporutnity the entire episode is below, so now you two can question your sexuality after believing Thirteen is a better movie than Blue Crush! Things certainly worked out for the two high school cuties - we learned in a post-SON web series that these queer teen heartthrobs got married and are expecting a child. But beaches aren't all fun and games, which needs us to the next item on our list...


5. Appreciate modern technology. These days being a world (or school year) apart from your sweetheart involves a lot of skype, snapchat and travel. For Heavenly Creatures' 1950s teens Pauline and Juliet, separation meant no contact and little chance of ever meeting again. After forming an intense, fantasy-fueled relationship that worried their parents, a plan to send Juliet to South Africa made these girls see red. In an example of how not to deal with imminent parting, the pair opted to murder Pauline's mother. If you're considering packing a brick for a family trip to the park we suggest instead becoming tight with instant messenger. If the promise of all-night time zone defying video chats isn't enough, remember that Pauline and Juliet's prison sentences included the condition that they never see each other again upon their release.




4. Don't value popularity over your sexuality. This age-old lesson is retaught weekly in MTV's Faking It. When Karma decides to pretend-date her best friend Amy for popularity, the plan seems questionable to both Amy and (we presume) absolutely any other human. Because Amy is an unreasonably understanding bestie she agrees and the new couple are instantly adored by all. This would be an ideal outcome if their new closeness hadn't unveiled Amy's previously unknown feelings for Karma. Pretending to date while crushing on her clueless friend is about as fun for Amy as taking high tea in hell. Her suffering reiterates what every Disney film and fortune cookie has ever taught us about being true to ourselves (that it's a good idea).


3. Take a chance and make the first move. Especially in the event of a supernatural demon attack. Season 4 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer finds the Scooby gang in college and surrounded by new romantic possibilities, but none are more memorable than future multi-season lovebirds/witches Willow and Tara. The two first truly connect in the episode "Hush" when the school is attacked by demons who render the residents literally speechless so they can remove their hearts. When Tara realizes that taking Willow’s hand and combining their mystical energies may save their lives, the girls not only get to keep their hearts, but win over each other’s as well. Throughout the next couple seasons, Willow and Tara also taught us that you should not magically brainwash/keep life-changing secrets from your girlfriend, but that’s a lesson we’ll save for another day. Until then, why not enjoy a musical number?!

2. You can be both a lesbian AND a cheerleader. Revelatory, we know! But if there’s anything we’ve learned from one of our all-time favorite movies ever, But I’m a Cheerleader, it’s that both school and gay pride can co-exist peacefully (and sexily). But I’m a Cheerleader also taught us that Clea DuVall may forever be one of our biggest cinematic schoolgirl crushes. A guest-starring role on Orange is the New Black opposite Cheerleader co-star Natasha Lyonne may very well be the end of us in the best possible way. You listening, Jenji?

1. When in doubt, power belt an Adele mashup. High school can really suck sometimes. Friends can turn on you, breakups can tear you apart, and far too often queer students get outted against their will. But Santana took that painful blow and turned it into one of the Glee’s best musical moments; a bone-chilling mashup of Adele’s “Rumor Has It/Someone Like You” performed with such heart-broken confusion it made us forget for a moment that Glee is often far too laughably absurd to endure. Seriously, just try watching this clip only once. We might still be watching Glee if it was entirely about Naya Rivera slaying emotionally intense pop ballads.

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

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Preston Max Allen