Posts Tagged ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’

The SLAT Custody Battle is no Kramer vs. Kramer is All I’m Saying

March 17, 2010

Last week’s SLAT was excruciatingly dull. It was pretty much just people having conversations with one another.

This week’s was ludicrous, and wonderful.

Adrian captures line of the week early with the irrefutable: “When people have something in common, like a common hate, what you do you call those people? FRIENDS.”

But then Adrian also gets worst comment of the week (it’s like the EGOT of SLAT to get best and worst) by going all Rielle saying: “Amy, accept responsibility because if you had had sex with Ben I wouldn’t have been able to get him to have sex with me.”

Little known fact: men are like baby ducklings. Once they imprint on one lady’s shame-cave they can never have sex with anyone else EVER.

Ben's lucky he wasn't exposed an olden time animal behaviorist for his first.

In the running, from the same convo, was Amy telling Adrian she thought that she and Ben would be each others’ first time. The premise of the show you are on is that you got knocked up after a one nighter with some other dude while cashing in your v-chip, keep up Amy!

Jack told Madison he wouldn’t turn her in (for offering him a bejammer in exchange for favorable character witnessing for Amy) if she did it with him (although then he said he was kidding, but I think he was kidding in the Nelly way: unless you’re gonna do it.), to which doostyn says: “!!!!!!!!!!!!! Blackmail rape! In high school! This show is so two faced: like it can be juicier than Gossip Girl, but would never claim to be.”

The A-plot of the episode is that Amy and Ricky are finally going into mediation for their custody battle. It’s funny because normally when dudes whine about custody I’m like “Whatever dude, it’s the only thing in the patriarchy that actually benefits women, so go cry about it in your money bed and enjoy seeing only people with dicks on C-SPAN.” But I despise Amy so much that I’m forced to take Ricky’s part, even though he makes it hard for me by insisting on having custody of the child on a day he works all day and plans to leave him with his parents. It makes NO sense, therefore, that Amy can’t have John on Saturday, I don’t care how involved Ricky’s foster parents want to be.

My favorite moment was Amy’s Kimberley Shaw and her Glorious Alter Egos rage freakout on the bench after Ricky left. What was that about? Whenever Amy shows strong emotions I want to laugh. I’m so mean.

I find Grace’s romantic storyline troubling, since I don’t buy Ben as a romantic lead. And Grace is all “You should get custody of John too, since you were there for Amy all those months after she gave birth.” Yes, Grace, let’s give THE WHOLE TOWN custody of John. Everyone can have him for 5 minutes a day, problem solved!

Everyone makes character witnessing videos for Amy and then Ricky, and most of them are mired in high school issues, which I’m sure was like, so thrilling for the mediator. The greatest part about that was that Amy has a little epiphany and realizes she should let Ricky see John, and the mediator is like, “That’s nice, but it’s still my decision, not yours, and you are now legally required to let Ricky take John on the weekends.” FACED!

I can’t stand Ashley’s fug boyfriend, and, good news, she seems to have nothing but paper thinly veiled contempt for him. Still, condommania continues as Ashley is grilled about why, as the sister of a teenager with a baby, she keeps condoms. Apparently her icky boyfriend has had sex before and would like to do it with Ashley. Like everyone else on this show, they seem set to do it after Leo and Betty’s wedding. Because, as doostyn notes: “Nothing says let’s fuck like the origin of bed death. Besides, wedding sex isn’t something you plan, it just…happens.”

(Now you can fill in a wedding sex anecdote about either of us bloggers you deem appropriate. We’ll never confirm or deny.)

Dating never looks anything but excruciating on this show. If I were an alien learning about human culture from broadcasts of SLAT I’d think romance was a punishment for terrorists.

Doostyn says: It would be excruciating to date on that show. You’d have to gossip with your parents– and possibly other people’s parents– about every kiss and fondle, and the school counselor would call you in and you’d be like “Aaaagh what is blossom doing here” and then she’d say your date was a disaster of genocidal proportions so she’s making you go to the school dance with your great grandmother.”

And just to cement all the horror of the last hour, the show leaves us by suggesting that Adrian is pregnant. Noooooooooooo.

Or (doostyn again): “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah! Nooooooooooooooooooooooo! Kill the evil spawn! I’m assuming it’s ben’s. I guess it could be Ricky’s, so might not be AS evil, either way, it’s wrong.
Me: No, apparently the condom broke with Ben.
doostyn: Ewwwwwwwwww
me: and Adrian’s late.
doostyn: Ben splooge: the only thing worse is a Ben baby.

(Note: welcome, influx of SLAT googlers querying “Who did Adrian have sex with after the mother-daughter dance” the answer, I hope you will be dismayed to learn, is Ben. EW. Also, I’m amazed as this implies that SLAT picks up new viewers every week, which is pretty discouraging. RuPaul’s Drag Race is on Mondays, people! Watch that!)

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America ___ Me

February 13, 2010

I was watching Models of the Runway last week (which, long sidebar: I find it incredibly boring, and yet for some reason I keep watching it: it’s not like I don’t have enough stuff watch– what’s that about? Basically I think they need to just devote five minutes of Project Runway to the model eliminations and any intrigues that might crop up because it’s sad but true– those girls cannot be interesting for a full twenty minutes.)

Anyway, one of the models, Alexis, took on the role of devious conniver this episode, talking shit about other contestants and telling the other models they should fear elimination, while she herself will never be dropped. It’s obnoxious in a way that reminds me of something said about academia– that the politics are so bitter because the stakes are so small. Seriously, what does winning Models of the Runway get you? It’s an even shitter America’s Next Top Model, winners of which are not even working regularly, much less “top” modelling. In a confessional, after behaving like a mean girl, Alexis is all: “Don’t hate me. I’m trying to play a game here!”

Ah. So you’re that contestant. The “Just Playing the Game” contestant. Closely related (indeed sometimes concurrent with), but not identical to “I’m not here to make friends” contestant. I am always surprised by the popularity of “I’m not here to make friends.” Surely they know that this tv appearence will top the google searches any future employers do. Do these manipulators think it reflects well on them for their real life that they’re demonstrably vicious backstabbers who have a proven inability to work in harmony with others? (This, btw, is the biggest reason I was annoyed that Michael Voltaggio won Top Chef. He was a total doucheface to other contestants whenever there was teamwork. Part of being Top Chef entails being a good restauranteur, which involves good management skills which are counterindicated by alienating your staff if they happen to be gasp! women or older.)

One of the other models, Kasey, interviews about Alexis’s attempts to shit-stir during pedicures (Alexis basically tries to get everyone to say they think Sarah, a friend of Kasey’s should be worried and will be sent home). Kasey is indignant: “Even if you think you know who’s going home, you just never say it!”

Time’s tv critic notes that The Real World first came to our tvs in February, 1992, meaning that today’s 18 year olds (for instance, the Jersey Shorians) “have never known a world in which hooking up drunk in a house paid for by a Viacom network was not an option.” That kind of thing makes me feel ancient.

As Kasey’s comments indicate, we also now have rules of ettiquette that everyone is supposed to know about how you behave toward fellow reality tv contestants, even though most of us will never find ourselves on tv. In fact, I feel like most people I know have an idea of which reality show they’d like to be on(for me it’s RuPaul’s Drag Race as the secret lady contestant) and which contestant they’d be (I have no illusions, American would love to hate me, though not because I was taking a nap in the corner Tyra, you ingrate).

Some of these rules are just tweaks of real world ettiquette– be a good loser and a gracious winner, but it’s complicated by the fact that when cameras are trained on you 24/7 there’s nowhere to retreat to to lick your wounds. Even in leisure time (like say, getting pedicures at the salon) you have to behave professionally and refrain from gossip if you want to avoid a shunning.

There are other areas, though, where I feel like reality tv contestants are puzzlingly naive. Why do so many contestants show up to Project Runway with poor construction skills? It it were me, as soon as I learned I’d been cast I would be learning how to use a professional sewing machine and make men’s wear and plus sized patterns. Why doesn’t anyone ever think to do this?

Or: why do people lie to their signicant others when they cheat on camera? On The Real World: Las Vegas Alton and Irulan began a full-on relationship even though Irulan had her boyfriend, Gabe, back home. She was seen making phone calls to him assuring him that everything was fine. Why bother lying? Did you think MTV wasn’t going to use that juicy footage? More recently on Top Chef Hosea and Leah made out despite having significant others and they inexplicably lied to the camera and said they had simply flirted. Why bother? Is everyone just a lot drunker than they seem to be?

Bye Bye, Betty

February 7, 2010

So! Ugly Betty is canceled after this season, I can’t say I’m sorry. The show started out so well, it was one of my favorite shows in its first season. I think it was honestly one of the most progressive shows on tv, with a sympathetic trans character, such a glorious gay teen, and obviously a very diverse cast. (“Did you look at me when you said Kwanzaa??”) But it was pretty clear in the second season that the writers hadn’t made much of a plan beyond the first season, because it got really, really bad and basically turned in “What boy does no longer so ugly Betty want to kiiiiiiiiss?”

That said! This week’s episode was surprisingly awesome, and that’s all at the feet of Varla Jean Merman. I’ve mentioned before that a boozetube favorite film is 2003’s Girls Will Be Girls, a dragtacular piece of awesomeness about how hard it is for a gal to make it in Hollywood. (“Us busy girls have it hard hard hard hard hard hard hard hard hard enough!”)

Varla has graced the small screen before in the Project Runway drag challenge which she won! (Yes, technically her designer won, but he was kind of a douchebag and a ‘phobe, so we’ll give her the win.) Her part, actually, was small (though large in my mind!). She’s a drag queen pal of Claire’s who watches Wilhelldiva Hater’s final drag performance, which is, actually, performed by real Wilhelmina, who is having a ball, er blast! Something non-testicular.

I love drag, it’s a surprise to no one (and if you’re not watching RuPaul’s Drag Race, well, shame on you, it’s awesome. “This is RuPual’s Drag Race not RuPaul’s school for girls!”), and I extra love drag that’s inclusive of women, who, after all, are also performing gender. Maybe sometimes we want to pile on the false lashes, push our tits up, and lip synch to Man Eater. Maybe some of us want people at the club to look at us and say: “That’s one foxy dude!” The other thing that’s awesome is that Wilhelmina ends up having a change of heart, but not one that makes her less bitchy, just one that helps her use her bitchiness for good and couture. And that’s the kind of resolution I can really get behind.