The problem with parody is simple: You have to make sure people know you’re doing it, and you have to make sure that you’re not jumping into a genre that’s already oversaturated with similar spoofs, satires and what-have-yous. And that’s kinda the problem with Lesbian Cops.
(Writer’s Aside: Out of curiosity, after watching the first episode, I googled “Lesbian Cops.” Thirty minutes later, I turned Safesearch on and tried again. There were plenty of books, some Rizzoli & Isles commentary, and then this show.)
Clearly trying to ape and skewer the tough-guy cop shows and movies of the 60’s and 70’s, along with what you’d find googling about without Safesearch on, Lesbian Cops is all about being big. Big movements, big acting, big, big, big. Death Wish was thrown out as the creators’ prime inspiration, which I completely see. From the Lesbian Cops website the premise goes, “Detective Tori Jones (Gena Shaw) is paired with a new detective on the force – Rashida Thompson (Krystal Marshall). They’re assigned to solve a brutal murder at Hamilton Elementary School.”
And that’s pretty much it. The remainder of the program is filled with attractive women acting like they’re about to rip your throat out with their bare hands and have angry sex with any woman they can find. It’s id unbridled, to be certain, but lacks the small touches that make such an exploitation spoof successful.
A prime example of the exploitation spoof done great is Black Dynamite, where the powers that be opted to pull back the curtain – revealing crew, stunt men, the actors themselves, all screwing up what they’re supposed to do as they barely manage to keep the movie coherent.
With Lesbian Cops, though, there aren’t any touches that give you the sense the people behind it aren’t trying to do it for real. Considering the program was partially inspired by the writer/director’s (Firouz Farhang) grandmother coming out on her 80th birthday, maybe this is in fact not an attempt to make a full-on exploitation film. Regardless, there’s little to let the viewer know either way.
Plus, the genre is a little played out. When I look at this, I start seeing the underlying problem. (Insert proper noun and/or adjective here) Cops has been done ad nauseam, with its apex either being Football Cops or Scissor Cops (for which I will pause writing this review for a minute to re-watch).
I’m putting Lesbian Cops down as a Sorta There. The lead actors have a great, unhinged quality, which would do well in the next Childrens’ Hospital / NTSF: SD: SUV spinoff. There’s a couple of belly-laugh lines, too. Check it out for yourself here.