The First Queer Israeli Web Series Kicks Off

Author: Yael Grinspan (translated by Yanir Dekel for A Wider Bridge)
Source: WDG
Published: September 13, 2016

A new Israeli web comedy series follows a group of queer women in their efforts to find themselves. The creators define the series as a combination of “Friends”, “The L Word” and “Girls”, and dealing with the quarter-life crisis. The first season includes 10 episodes, 5-minutes length each.

lesbion

The main character in the series, called “HaLesbion Ha’elion” (free translation: ‘The Top Lesbile’) begins shooting after the high holy days, is Or, who named herself queen of the lesbian swamp – until in the first episode her sister catches her with a man, and Or deals with the serious consequences in a funny and ridiculous way.

Other characters in the series include Shalhevet, Or’s annoying little sister, who is also religious and lesbian; Shir, who is at the peak of a Generation Y crisis and is accidentally emotionally cheating on her girlfriend with an American woman who hits on her on the Internet; Amit, genderqueer, who has gone through many life changes and only looks for a place to belong to; and last but not least is Chava, the most organized woman in Israel, with an amazing daughter and an amazing job, and who serves as a parent figure to her friends while preforming as a drag king at nights.

“It’s a show about crazy lesbian women created by crazy lesbian women,” says screenwriter Ronnie Zidon. Zidon is a writer and creator who only recently entered the field of screenwriting. “What is special about the series is that it comes from the field. It was born out of the community and represents it.”

The creators of the show start a crowdfunding campaign and according to Ronnie, this idea is directly connected to the creators’ perception of a series that comes from the community. “I suppose that if I woke up in the morning and realized that there are no tv shows about lesbians in Israel, there are probably other people who feel the same. These people may be willing to support us and fulfill our dream. At the end of the day there is no producer behind it, or a huge network that can run all the right connections. The series will only move forward if everyone who wants it to happen will contribute to the project.”

“When Ronnie sent me the script I was in another production,” says producer of the series Gili Gershonok. Gershonok produces for movies and TV, and recently completed production of two movies filmed in London. “After reading it, I immediately closed up days for working on it in my calendar. I knew I had to be part of it.”

She said she is not the only one who feels like this. “Two weeks ago we published on a Facebook post about the series. We were immediately flooded with e-mails , and talked with so many people who wanted be a part of it. The feeling is that production of this kind is something that people really have been waiting to happen,” she says. “We present a range of characters that have yet to appear on the Israeli screens, representing authenticity that is accessible to everyone. the discourse of the characters who go about their identity in front of others is a discourse that is relevant to everyone.”

Watch the first trailer:

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