If you love lesbian period pieces, you are going to love season two of HBO’s hit show Perry Mason.
In a recent plot development, Perry Mason’s secretary, Della Street, finds herself falling for Anita St. Pierre, a lawyer who is working on the same case as Perry. Della and Anita’s relationship is first hinted at in the second episode of the season when they share a late-night conversation about their lives. Anita tells Della about her childhood, which was marked by abuse and neglect. Della, in turn, tells Anita about her own struggles with addiction. Classic lesbian trauma-dump-on-the-first-date.
The relationship that unfolds between Della and Anita is complex, nuanced, and full of love, providing important queer representation. Not only that, it’s given the same amount of attention and development as the heterosexual relationships on the show.
Jen Tullock, who plays Anita St. Pierre, said told The Daily Beast that she hasn’t “gotten to play many queer characters as a gay person, so that was personally special.” She continued, “I’m so grateful for the reminder of my foremothers—for lack of a better term. I hope [this] is a reminder of how far we’ve come but also how far we still have to go in making sure that any person under the queer banner is able to live loudly and safely.”
Both Rylance and Tullock said that they were proud to be a part of a show that is representing lesbian relationships in a positive way. They said that they hope that the relationship between Della and Anita will inspire other people to be themselves and to love who they love.
“Ultimately, love is love. I feel so warm and tender about this little love story that we incubated together, and I’m very proud of it,” Tullock told The Daily Beast.
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