My Letter to Syfy.
To the Syfy channel and content editors at Prodigy.
We appreciate that you have a selection of programs to air and want to convey gratitude that you have continued to renew Lost Girl year after year. It is a piece of genre storytelling that stands apart with new and refreshing concepts of gender equality and sexual freedom without labels.
It is disheartening and upsetting to find your edited content for time on this program skewed towards the erasure of Lauren and Bo’s relationship and their motivations with one another. I do not say this lightly, or with a purpose in mind other than to point out, objectively, the glaring pieces that stand out and how it alters story and audience perception.
Over the course of season 4— Lauren’s lines, emotion, and spoken motivations centering around Bo have been struck from the American Syfy airing.
In Episode 4.1, Lauren had 14 seconds of airtime to express her remembering Bo. Cut to 4 seconds and altering the character’s visceral reaction.
In Episode 4.4, Lauren had an entire soliloquy to express her dismay at remembering past actions that hurt Bo and her own recognizance of past actions and how they changed her and why she is who she is. Cut down to 1/3 of the time. This altered the depth of her emotive response and limited the audience’s understanding.
In Episode 4.7, Laurens concern and emotion over Bo being trapped in Dyson’s head was chopped for a different feel.
In Episode 4.13, Lauren and Bo reconcile in what should have been a pivotal, emotional piece. Lauren declares her feelings for Bo by expressing “I’m yours.” In place of this we get a small dialogue about the Morrigan and a kiss missing its context. Out of all the things that could have been removed, this was hacked to pieces in the middle of dialogue. The remaining scene is a shell of what it was and removes the motivation element. It fundamentally feels different than what Canada aired.
Nowhere in the season is her romantic counterpart, Dyson, treated with the same editing. No lines are removed concerning his motivations and feelings for Bo. While his screentine is triple in the face of Lauren’s over the course of four seasons (a schism created by the show), having any edits to Lauren (her feelings for Bo) are much more character damaging for this reason. It begs the question of why? The feel comes across as heterosexist and its result is a varied rendition of the Lost Girl story.
I think the channel is deciding for the audience what it should and shouldn’t root for. This is propagated by the erasure of Lauren from 90% of the pictures listed episodically on Syfy’s website, tweeted and discussed. In fact, the season four banner which included Lauren for Showcase and the Giant Ape DVDs (as well as iTunes) was replaced with a chosen S4 pictures on the site effectively un-including her. Put it in comparison and context, if a love triangle had two men rivals, where one was African-American, and Syfy did the same treatment with this character..what would you call it? Bigotry is an ugly word and one should hesitate before it. I’m not hesitating, after four seasons of this treatment, to use it here.
Your audience deserves to hear both sides of this love story. I implore you to change your directives with regards to editing Lost Girl, and give your audience more than just a surface sexual treatment. Give back the depth to Lauren in your broadcasts. Trust your audience to make their own emotional choices. Part of what had been amazing about the doccubus phenomenon has been the reception from a broad based audience of every gender and orientation. It is part of a love story that transcends the bodies that hold them. It’s more about character and chemistry than anything else.
Trust your audience, don’t skew the story with your predictable path. Thanks for listening. Thanks for airing Lost Girl. Thanks for considering this more balanced treatment to characters worthy of taking on the extraordinary.
Thanks for Imagining Greater.
Reblogging for those who ask what is edited. I am positive this editing is responsible for the difference in reception to Lauren’s character in the US vs Canada (as seen by SDCC vs Toronto Fan Expo).