John Young
March 05, 2009 AT 05:07 AM EST

With the final episode of Showtime’s The L Word airing on March 8, the stars of the six-season show gathered Tuesday night for a farewell celebration at Café La Bohème in West Hollywood. Creator IIene Chaiken said the show, which challenged stereotypes about lesbian identity, sex and relationships, has made an imprint on the culture. “We have heard stories and gotten letters over the years about how the show has changed people’s lives and outlooks, and I’m proud of that,” she said (top photo: Chaiken, far left, with stars Katherine Moennig and Kate French).

Marlee Matlin, who played the artistic Jodi, admired the show’s ability to reach a mainstream audience. “Whether you were gay or straight, it didn’t matter,” Matlin said. “There was something for everyone here.”

The same could be said for the party, which was presented by EW. For instance, Jane Lynch (Role Models) charmed the room, inspiring huge laughs all evening no matter whom she was talking to. And while the party was a goodbye, the people behind The L Word seemed ready to embrace the future. Chaiken has already shot the pilot for a spinoff series that’ll follow one of the show’s characters into prison. “I am hopeful that it will get on the air on Showtime, and if it does, that’s certainly one way that life will go on for The L Word,” she said. Cast member Laurel Holloman (above, third from right, with Chaiken, Matlin, and, from far left, Rose Rollins, Mia Kirshner, Daniela Sea and Moennig) had an even more immediate future on her mind. “I can’t overdo it or stay out too late,” she said. “I have an audition tomorrow!”  (Reporting by Carrie Bell)

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