Posts Tagged ‘True Blood’

Taking it! Personally!

February 12, 2010

May I offer you wine and a cigarette like they do in Fraaaaaaahnz? Red wine has all those cardiovascular benefits, that’s why I drink to much of it! That and needing a little something to wash down the inconsistencies and inaccuracies of Secret Life. This week’s episode is titled “Let’s Try That Again,” but I’m serious, absolutely nothing is tried again.

Amy has the worst friends, but really, no worse than she deserves. They taunt her at her locker about how her dad won’t go to counseling with her mom so the Juergens will tater totes get divorced, plus Amy’s probably a bad kisser, which is why she can’t get a man (even though Amy has at least three dudes chasing her at a time). Why is Amy friends with these people? Instead of telling them what they can shove and where Amy is all: “If I were a bad kisser we [Amy and grocery lad] wouldn’t have made out for two hours!” Okay, I remember being a teenager, but now that I’m a wizened old crone I feel like, “Who has the time for multiple hours of making out?”

As I typed to Doostyn in medias res, what is with this show and its relentless attempt to improve America’s sexual self esteem with straight up LIES like “Everyone’s a good kisser” from this episode or “There’s no such thing as bad sex.” It’s not true, and hoes like Ricky and Adrian should know this, but they’re the ones peddling these lies! (Though it’s worth nothing that whorishness is a matter of attitidue, not of fact, as shown in this handy chart of who’s had sex with whom on SLAT. Note that Ricky and Jack have the same number as do Adrian and Grace’s moms. Also, Grace has dated all the male leads now, so she’ kind of ho-ier than Adrian.)

Ricky disappoints me by offering to makeout with Amy for practice. RICKY. No. Do not offer to practice kissing with Amy when you are going out with Adrian. It’s both hurtful to my favorite character and too good a thing by half to happen to Amy (who fucking sucks, in case my opinion isn’t clear. And Anne’s not much better, she’s like, Amy’s elder indecisive whiny clone).

Now, marvel as the writers of this piece of trash can’t remember what happens in this very episode, never mind from week to week. Grace arrives at school and sees Blossom the guidance counselor putting up posters.

Grace:What is that
Blossom: It’s a poster. [LOL duh.] I made it myself. [How nice for you!] It’s for the mother daughter dance. It’s sort of a ritual I like to do in the springtime. [Jesus Brenda Hampton, she’s Jewish not Wiccan.]
Grace: We always have a father daughter dance.
Blossom: I know there’s usually a father daughter dance, but mother daughter dances are always interesting and usually fun. I started switching our dads with moms, oh years ago… Something going on with your mom? The new boyfriend?
Grace: He’s not a boyfriend, just some younger man she’s seeing to embarrass me. Her husband, my father, hasn’t even been dead for a year.
Blossom: It’s a year of mourning with the protestants? [Oh don’t try to lure me in with Protestant bashing, I’m wise to your baits and switches.]
Grace: I don’t think there’s any rule.
Blossom making sad face: Oh so, it just hurts? [Abrupt switch to happy face.] Life is for the living.
Grace: Not without respect for the dead.
Blossom: That’s kind of what this is about, the mother daughter dance.

It is? What? Huh? But… how? Time for shameful admissions, this episode actually touched a nerve with me. My Mom died a couple years ago and my Dad is dating again, so I really feel for Grace this episode, since I am constantly forced to bite my tongue from bitching him out about not showing proper respect for the dead, so I might be projecting here but YOU SUCK JANE MANCINI YOUR HUSBAND DIED LIKE FOUR MONTHS AGO WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?!?

That’s probably enough of the Kanye caps. Grace storms off the main office without getting Blossom’s signature who twoshadows (like foreshadowing for a scene that’s too close to create any tension) that Grace will be back. Madison is waiting in Blossom’s office to bitterly vent, and for a moment I find her sympathetic too, which is generally a sign to ask me if I’m feeling all right.

Madison: We need to talk about this mother daughter dance. you know, some of us don’t have mothers. It’s wrong, it’s just wrong and it’s awkward for me and for anyone else like me who’s lost a mother to death or divorce or career or whatever.

You had me and then you lost me Madison. When your parents are divorced or your mom has a job (!!!!) your mom is still around. It’s really NOT AT ALL like she’s dead, Jesus.

Blossom: Your mom passed away?
Madison: Five years ago.
Blossom: Did your dad remarry?
Madison: What does that have to do with anything she’s not my mother.
Blossom: What’s her name?
Madison: I call her my wicked stepmother, he calls her Emily. I don’t want to dance with her.
….
Blossom: How long has your dad been married to her?
Madison: Three years. And they dated a year before that. Just a year after my mom died. At least I think it was a year. They could have been going out longer.

Oh jeez. Girl I feel you on all of this shiz, except that my Dad has yet to marry the Wicked Queen. Expect petulant internet rantings if that does come to pass though.

Blossom: Might be time for the two of you to get to know each other. [WHATEVER BLOSSOM I’LL GET TO KNOW HER IN HELL!]
Madison: Well, my father and I have an agreement. I don’t have to get to know her as long as I ‘m not rude to her.
Blossom: Tell me about her.
Madison: She flirted with my dad, and she conned him into marrying her and then she took over everything in the house and she ruined my life.

Did she make your father take down pictures of your mom? That may or may not have happened in SOME OF OUR childhood homes.

Grace, Lauren, and Amy all show up to the office for reasons of contrivance. Amy’s shitty friends pressure her to have her parents go to counseling with Lauren’s dad. Grace is cranky. She snaps at them all to butt out (frickin’ finally) and storms out, where she runs into Adrian all: “Leave me alone. I’m late, I have to get to class. I don’t have time to talk to you, I wish I had never talked to you.”

Turns out she’s mad because Jane Mancini is talking about marrying the young guy. Now, when did Grace learn this in relation to the earlier scene which also took place in school when Grace denied he was even a real boyfriend? Did Jane Mancini come to the school and take Grace aside in the hallway? Who knows! Not the writers, certainly. And like, Jane Mancini sucks here, but I don’t know why Grace is taking it out on Adrian who can’t possibly have done anything. (Although later it seems she has psychically divined this info.)

Now the Mancinis are at home and Jane is trying to justify her extreme faithlessness and disrespect for the dead by being all: “People who are happy in marriage get married right away after their spouse dies!” Grace bitches that no one asked whether the children were happier. Jane is all: “Grace you’re hardly a child, and Tom is hardly a child either.” For once, truth! Tom is like 30.

We finally meet Jack’s mom, and it’s Vampire Pam! The greatest vampire in recorded history! She summarizes Jack’s situation with all her awesome: “He’s choosing between oral sex with a fun redhead and a chance to go all the way with a mixed up blonde.”

The weekly telephone montaging begins. Why doesn’t this show understand that watching people talk on the phone is increeeeeedibly dull. Apparently even Adrian and Ashley talk on the phone now. Doostyn points out “It’s like they, too, watch the show, and are like ‘oh we’re on the same show, maybe we should talk some time?'”

Ashley bitches about how no one wants to know how her date with the creepiest pizza delivery man on earth went. (Yeah, I skipped a week and so we didn’t talk about that, but it was UBER creepy with creepy pizza guy being all “Let’s go to your dark isolated back yard yes….. You’re all alone you say?”) Adrian hilariously comforts her: “You’re young and you’re strong Ashley.”

Jeez, is this Lifetime? Ashley snaps back: “I’m what, a year younger than Amy and two years younger than you.”

Madison has apparently gotten over her stepmother issues, as she makes an excuse (algebra) to hang out with her and talk about oral. Wish I were kidding. I don’t think I’ll ever get there with the Wicked Queen, nor frankly, do I want to.

We learn from Jane Mancini that Tom and Betty stay in touch and Jane is all snobby about Betty. Whatever, Jane Mancini, Betty is the best thing about this show.

All the dudes come over to “talk to” Grace. Ben and Jack sort out who owns the little woman in the hallway.

Ben: This is a stupid idea. When I couldn’t get Grace I texted—
Jack: You texted me and when you didn’t get me you thought I’d be over here so you came over been there. And you did call Adrian and she told you that Ricky was over at Amy’s– she called Grace. they really are friends, they fight but they’re friends.
Ben: Yeah I did talk to Adrian. And then I talked to Ashley because Adrian wanted me to talk to Ashley. I really wish I hadn’t talked to Ashley.

Jesus Christ. If there’s one thing more boring to watch than telephone conversations it’s a discussion about telephone conversations. (Perhaps I’ve compounded the boring by blogging about it. Oops.) Anyway, Ben wishes he hadn’t talked to Ashley because she presumably told him that she saw Ricky and Amy making out.

Now for the most random thing of the night, Tom busts in on Grace and Jane’s heart to heart, all: “I love Tammi and asked her to marry me. Just kidding! I am not getting married to Tammi, I’m going to wait for Adrian.”

That thought makes me ill.

Ashley closes us out with some sage words to Anne about wanting her to come back. “You know how it with babies, they either push you together like Amy and Ricky or pull you apart like you and dad.”

Fucking Babies. If there’s one thing they are, it’s conniving.

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Sectionals

December 10, 2009

For the mid-season finale, this week’s episode of Glee was a little predictable. If the team hadn’t won sectionals this would have been the shortest season ever, so there wasn’t a lot of tension there, although it was fun to see how they got there, and nice to hear all new numbers.

It’s nice to see that blonde lady from True Blood who wanted to bone jason stackhouse continues to be perky and ambiguously misguided. Pop up other places on my tv pretty lady! Her comments about the deaf choir rang unfortunately true, and I don’t think it had to be that way at all, opportunity squandered. I cringed. I also cringed when the choir director for the correctional school was all, “We black people will just never be as good as you white kids even when we cheat and you don’t practice!” Uncomfortable.

On the very good side, the faked pregnancy plots are resolved, hurrah! At the start of the episode I was confused because I honestly didn’t remember Puck telling anyone he was the father, but you know, booze is right there in the title of this blog. Mercedes and Tina’s cell phone conversation made me smile as it was basically a remake of the scene from Clueless in which Cher and Dionne are talking on their (ENORMOUS) cell phones and meet in the hallway. Tina I’m agnostic on, but I love Mercedes at least as much as I love Cher Horowitz, so it’s ok.

Bland Redhead and Will got together andzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz the less said about that the better. I. Don’t. Care.

I’ll definitely miss Glee until it comes back, but fortunately all the music is up on youtube, so I can get a fix of the show’s continuing strength– the excellent vocal performances.

Tv is back! Tv is back!

September 16, 2009

Summer is no longer the seasonal death of tv like back in my callow youth; some of my favorite shows (Mad Men, True Blood) are summer shows. But there’s still an undeniable excitement about the fall schedule returning. I’m open to suggestions for what new shows I should pick up. So far I’m seized upon Glee and I give it the highest recommendation for those who enjoy music theatre. Like Jennifer Coolidge, Jane Lynch has the magical touch for elevating the written material, not that the Glee scripts need as much help as SLAT’s.

Now, perhaps I’m just afflicted by jet-lag from that trans-atlantic flight I was on an hour ago, but Dan Scott, on the One Tree Hill premiere seems to have traded in his arson and fratricide toolboxes in favor of life as a televangelist. It’s OTH, so it will find a way to alchemize gold into boring, but like Charlie Brown and the football, I can’t help but get excited.

Noooooooooo Godric!!!

August 19, 2009

This week’s True Blood was freaking awesome. I am so tired of Bill and Sookie and so in love with Eric (who I privately think of as the vampire of Kurt Cobain) that I was very pleased by the romantic development and Sookie’s hot sex dream, though I am a little retroactively annoyed that I was taken in by the Comic Con promo shot of Sookie and Eric in bed together. It’s like the time they promised me steamy kisses between Annie Camden and Rabbi Glass on Sev Heav but it all turned out to be a wacky misunderstanding.

So Sookie drank Eric’s blood and is now attracted to him. (Ann Paquin was hilarious when she ran up to Bill and was all ‘That was disgusting and horrible!!!’ with that big grin on her face.) She has way fewer questions about this than I would have in her shoes. She drank Bill’s blood on like the second day she knew him. Shouldn’t she wonder how much of her attraction to him is “real” and how much is the blood? Doesn’t she feel like it’s a little bit of a violation that Bill never told her about this effect? I hope this is just the first step to Bill and Sookie breaking up because their paternalistic smug relationship is getting a little old.

I feel a little let down by the fact that we only really got to have Godric for two episodes and change. What a let down. He was shaping up to be an interesting character, and his relationship with Eric was something I would have liked to see a LOT more of.

I was also interested in the implications for True Blood’s parallel to homosexuality. Godric said a couple times that he was more evolved than other vampires, and it seems he, like Bill and Eddie, was another non-practicing vampire, at least he turned down Eric’s offer of a human after being “rescued” from the Fellowship of the Sun. I also have no idea why he thought burning in their ritual would help human/vampire relations. I’m not blind to the Christ symbolism, but I think the FotS folks would be.

Over in Bon Temps, I was thrilled that Lafayette stood up for Tara to Eggs. If your cousin comes into the bar with a new relationship and a new black eye, more than nine times out of ten Lafayette would have been correct, and in a way, he was in this case. Eggs did hit Tara, and Tara is in a dangerous situation, just not the exact situation Lafayette thought. I don’t know what Maryann’s deal is, but I feel like Daphne was incorrect, Maryann is no god. Her monologue about blacking out being religious ecstasy seemed… ill informed. Yes, a lot of religious worship requires a trance state or the contemplation of nothingness, but that’s hardly the same as having no recollection of what you did the night before. There’s a big difference between a mindful loss of control and the complete recklessness Maryann inspires. It’s good to see that Eggs and Tara, both of whom have good reasons to worry about substance abuse are worried, even if they can’t resist Maryann. It will be really interesting to see what happens when the grown-ups (boring Bill and Sookie) come back to town.

Gay Vampires

July 29, 2009

Fratty Jesus Dude(FJD): Some sins are bigger than others.
Jason Stackhouse: Like What?
FJD: Well… let’s say you’re gonna do it out of wedlock, you gotta make sure the girl you do it to ain’t married either.
Jason:Right. Cuz adultery’s bad.
FJD: One of the worst. Up there with incest and bestiality.
Jason: [Look of huh gross]
FJD: But all of them put together ain’t half as bad as if you do it to a vampire. [Pause] Or to a dude. Or a vampire dude. That’s cream della cream bad. Straight to hell.

Oh True Blood. Given my penchant for vampire romance as a genre it would be impossible not to like you, and the fact that you’re so excellently written and acted means I don’t have to even try to resist. That said, you do bring up the problem of art you enjoy with whose message you do not totally agree.

Doostyn and I have had many talks with our friends in which they say something like, “I love True Blood‘s message about gay civil liberties!”

And we’re like, “Reeeeeally?”

The show makes a deliberate parallel between vampires and the gays. For the first, the opening credits feature a Church sign reading “God Hates Fangs” for second, girls who have sex with vampires are “fang-bangers” like “fag-hags.” Now, I would argue that fag hags (or, as I prefer to call us, fruit flies) don’t actually want to have sex with their gay friends, but Dan Savage disagrees. Next up is the fact that the US is torn over a Vampire Marriage amendment in (IIRC) Massachusetts. And finally, there are the vampire bars of corny names like Fangtasia. (“Vampires,” says Bill, “Are so old they still find puns amusing.” Incidentally, so do I, my favorite gay bar name is The Manhole.)

But, unfortunately, the picture is not one of rosy acceptance. Every vampire who appears on the show so far is actually murderous and pretty much amoral– with the exceptions of Bill, one of the main characters, and Eddie. Bill is a vampire who doesn’t act like vampire, he only feeds on synthetic blood (and the blood of his girlfriend), separates himself from other vampires, and seems to despise them. To the point that Sookie, the other main character, and his girlfriend, has commented on his self-loathing. Bill, basically, is an ex-gay, someone who defines vampirism (gayness) as an act rather than an identity.

Eddie is the actually gay vampire whom Lafayette exchanges sex for blood with and whom Jason Stackhouse later kidnaps. Eddie wanted to be a vampire to be cool and to pull a bunch of young boys, but ended up being a shut-in. He’s another non-practicing vampire/gay, though this time not by choice. And he’s completely sweet and sympathetic.

Other than that, like I said, the vampires may be interesting, and may be attractive, but so far they are all evil.

In this sort of heavy allegorical air, it’s also important to look at how actual gay characters are portrayed. So far, unless I’m forgetting someone, we only have Lafayette, the jack-of-all-trades of Bon Temps. Lafayette is a very positive character who, as far as I can tell, doesn’t conform to many gay stereotypes. He’s beautiful and wears makeup, but he’s also heavily muscled. He works as a cook, but also as a construction worker and a stripper (not to mention a drug dealer, specifically of V (Vampire Blood), hence his relationship with Eddie). Lafayette is definitely the object of prejudice, but he’s not a victim: when some good ol’ boys say they won’t eat food prepared by him because they are afraid of AIDS, Lafayette pulls out his earrings (nice touch!), storms out of the kitchen, tells them all they had to do was order the burger without AIDS, and then licks the buns of the burgers! It’s AWESOME.

Basically my assessment of True Blood is that I think the producers and writers didn’t fully think through their portrayal of gay people or the vampire=gay people allegory. I can certainly hope to be proven wrong, but that’s my assessment so far.

A lot of people get defensive because they love a show and cling on to any evidence that it’s not prejudiced in the way it seems if read right. Personally, I think it’s easier to acknowledge that art you enjoy doesn’t always live up to your beliefs.

I’m gonna get what I want!

June 9, 2009

That’s what I’m going to do with my life.

I’ve been wallowing in the pity of the dearth of summer television, and mourning how empty my DVR has been (unless you count the old Tyras I’ve seen before and will watch again because Tyra NEVER AGES seriously, just believe her, she’l choke a bitch).

But tonight Kathy Griffin’s My Life on the D-List was back!  I’m not going to lie because I simply am unable on account of my perfect moral upbringing:  it was some funny business.  She spent most of the hour with Bette Midler, who was fantastic because she would say things like (following Kathy bragging about her two Emmys) “I’ve been nominated for two Oscars, I’m way more classy, oh, yes, I was ROOOOOOOOOBBED.”  But then she got all hoity-toity and lame to the brillionth degree when Kathy was all “So some of my immature guy friends want to know [this had to be a shield, she’s definitely not above immaturity, and that’s an asset] is ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’ about farting?”  Bette was silent for a deadly moment and then just said “Next question.”  Oh come on, you used to perform in gay men’s bathouses Midler, you’re not above crassness!  Kathy ended the show by taking Bette Midler to a super trashy Vegas casino (and away from her fancy digs she’s got at the Ceaser while she lives there and performs her show and has dinner catered every night by her personal French chef) and fed her fried Twinkies and Oreos.  Then some drunks outside made Bette Midler sing “Happy Birthday” to them and a clearly unstable vagrant woman blocked the camera lens the whole time.  So good.

This oasis in the summer tv desert led me to some digging and here are the highlights of this summer’s offerings in my opinion (Gnatalby edit this post to include any of your own so it can be the official Booze Tube Summer TV Guide…our first list…we’re going places!):

June 10:  Something called Top Chef Masters which I assume involves past Top Chefs competing

June 14:  True Blood (Soooooooooooooooookie I’m a pile of aaaaaaaaaaashes but I looooooooooooooooooooove you.)

June 22:  Official Best TV Bet of the Summer:  Secret Life of the American Teenager.  Seriously dudes, this shit is not to be missed.  So bad that it’s so good and with so much baffling Christian moralizing juxtaposed with even more baffling teen sex!  Worship it like Jesus wants you to!

July 7:  Something ABC Family brings us called 10 Things I Hate About You which I can only assume is a series based on the actually decent (and probably underrated in many circles) teen flick.  This is not necessarily a safe tv bet since I know nothing about it, but trust the Booze Tubers to expose all its flaws and glories.

August 20:  Project Runway, but not totally resembling the reliably entertaining show we’ve grown accustomed to.  It’s gonna be on Lifetime now, so Heidi’s gonna have to either dodge all the rapists who will be competing this year or she’s gonna kidnap their babies or maybe she’ll have to learn the true meaning of Christmas…it’s a little nutty over there on the tv for ladies.  Ladies are kinda crazy.  Also it will be in L.A. because now that ANTM is back in New York a full-blown citywide turf war had be avoided and Hedi and Co. were forced to retreat.

Summer just got a little more brighter yet simulateously darker because new curtains might have to go up to block out that pesky sun.  TV is my man for all seasons.

Keeping up with the Televisional Joneses

May 2, 2009

A couple weeks ago a good friend of The Booze Tube shared the list he had made up to remind himself what shows to watch throughout the week. Like me, this friend tends to watch tv the day after it airs, so, in a semblance of order, for me, that’s….

Monday: Huh, nothing.

Tuesday: One Tree Hill, Gossip Girl, How I Met Your Mother, Greek, and Chuck

Wednesday: Huh, nothing.

Thursday: Lost.

Friday: Holy Cats! The Office, Parks and Recreation, 30 Rock, Grey’s Anatomy, Private Practice, and Ugly Betty.

Saturday: Dollhouse.

Shows that aren’t in season right now, but of which I am a religious follower: Secret Life of the American Teenager, Big Love, Mad Men, True Blood.

And that’s not to mention whole seasons of shows I’m just catching on DVD.  90210 (classic, not the current waste of prime time space), Melrose Place, Smallville, Flight of the Conchords, Arrested Development, and Battlestar Galactica.

Writing all that out makes me feel funny, like when Lynette lined up all of Bree Van de Kamp’s wine bottles on the porch with a note that said: “Still think you don’t have a problem?”*

But hey, when I’m a top tv blogger no one will question me! Or when I get my dream job of pairing foods with tv shows. 90s nighttime soaps go great with cheese, I mean, obviously.

*Though from what I remember, there were only like, 12 wine bottles. I guess I’d need to know the time span, because if that’s per day, then yeah, Bree totally had a problem, but if that’s over like, two weeks and she’s just lazy about recycling, then I think that’s a lot more borderline.  Incidentally, remember how Bree confesses in some later season that she sometimes fantasizes about opening the Chardonnay she knows is chilling in the fridge? What kind of assholes is she living with that keep wine in the fridge of a recovering alcoholic?