Friday night at Frameline37 saw the premiere of writer/director Wendy Jo Carlton’s web series Easy Abby. Repackaged as a feature film, it tells the story of Abby, a happy-go-lucky singleton whose love life includes plenty of the sex, much less of the love. Commitment and Abby don’t get on. What she does have in abundance is loyalty to her friends.
Born out of a coffee date, turned dinner date about past relationships, Wendy Jo Carlton (Hannah Free) and Lisa Cordileone, the co-producer and star of the series, brainstormed what was to become a funny, honest and original look at life in the dating world of a thirty-something lesbian.
What makes Easy Abby stand out is its utter lack of L Word Shane-like characters. Abby is not a “player”, she just likes to sleep with women. As we navigate through the first season, we meet the people in her life who ground her. Her best and somewhat neurotic friend Sara, performed with hilarity by Emily Shain. Her bike repair shop colleague Eileen, played to perfection by Laura Chernicky, is the wise lesbian with a big crush on Sara. And Bobbie, portrayed by Fawzia Mirza, the local bartender with some issues of her own.
Over the course of the season Abby hooks up with an array of women, awkwardly bumps into ex-lovers and hooks up again, until her eyes fall upon Danielle. The arc of the first season very much builds towards what happens to a character like Abby when a woman who stirs up real emotion comes along.
In order to present the show as a feature film, Wendy Jo Carlton added interludes of women walking towards camera, cheeky smiles on their face, all explained by Abby’s need for counting women rather than sheep before falling asleep. The format works and the response to the series has been spectacular. To date Easy Abby has hit over 8 million views. With a second season in mind, you might want to catch up on Season 1 today.