oh beezy

miscellaneous cultural commentary from two urban twenty-somethings. on this here interweb, we go by "bee" and "zy."

holy sacrilegious travel ad! to the popemobile!

So, Kayak.com has a hot new ad out. In case you haven’t seen it:

The Pope’s not gonna like that. He’s probably busy drafting the next Harry Potter ban, though.

Of course, this is well-worn territory. Nuns as transgressive sexual beings have been featured in many TV spots and ad campaigns, including The L Word and this widely publicized Bennetton image:

The world can use one more, though. Enjoy!

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confused, NBC? then make Ellen the host of The Tonight Show.

So, aside from Haiti earthquake coverage (on the subject of which it must be mentioned, though obvious, that that crisis is way more important than any TV “crisis”), the NBC management debacle, aka Conan vs. Leno, aka Chingate, has evoked a ton of response from my American e-friends. That is, Facebook friends.

Haiti and Conan are the memes, but “I’m With Coco” is the image that people are choosing to replace themselves with. According to the Chicago Tribune, over 276,000 Facebook members have become fans, pledged to attend pro-Conan rallies, and sworn their devotion to O’Brien’s sharp wit and ginger coif.   

Now, I don’t have hard numbers, but that seems like a lot more people turning out to protest in the streets for Conan than for health care, gay rights or help for Haiti. Or at least doing so vocally, and more importantly, publicly.

Am I missing something?

I like Conan, don’t get me wrong. That lanky dude ranks up there with Craig Ferguson as one of the two least creepy dudes on network late night. Letterman gives me the funny uncle heeby jeebies, while Leno makes me want to rip my own hair out.  But they’re still white male comedians dominating the airwaves, and in that sense CoCo taking over The Tonight Show isn’t so much a change from Leno as it is a perpetuation of the comedy status quo.

Granted, “I’m With EDeg, Who Isn’t Even In The Running” does not make the best viral slogan.  Plus Ellen already has a goal in sight: Oprah’s 4 PM throne (and she will get it). There is something to be said for positioning yourself to take over the daytime stage, a position that has allowed Oprah to build an indomitable media empire based on a savvy mix of cushy specials, random prizes, books and well-placed outrage and activism.

Ellen knows what she’s doing, too. Her interviews are tasteful, her prizes lavish, her sympathy for the downtrodden sincere. Her 12 days of Christmas prize shows in December 2009 made tchotchke-hungry me drool in greedy ecstasy over the heavy piles of hubcaps, diamond watches and scented soap that I will definitely never need.  And while Ellen’s sympathy features are so far mostly limited to families who have fallen victim to the recession (a worthy subject), perhaps a few more years of entrenchment in the media landscape will allow her to do for gay youths what Oprah did for girls’ education. At least here’s hoping; being a non-threatening lesbian on daytime TV must be an exhausting daily maneuver.

Or maybe not. Ellen and Portia, the most gorgeous couple in Hollywood, were by many accounts the most talked about pairing of 2009. And Ellen’s total ease in her own body, coupled with a sweet sense of humor and killer dance moves, have allowed her to achieve mainstream success while being completely out.

But why does Ellen’s greatness, as well as that of other female comedians, have to be limited to daytime or non-network coverage? Because women watch TV during the day and men like to come home and laugh at night? Because Conan got a raw deal? Because  no woman ever hosted the late shows during or after Johnny Carson’s era, and thus it’s expected that the trend should continue?

I’m sorry Conan, but I don’t care if you get that slot. I don’t care if Leno gets it either. Because I will no longer be watching either of you. What’s the difference, in the end, between you two white, straight men sniping about how the network is mistreating you, while making millions on the same old star-flattering, side-kick pandering, gay-joke spreading routines? Not much. If I’m going to watch a big network show in the wee hours of the morning, I want a lady at the helm. And funny girl Ellen fits the bill.

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vajazzling

So, miss JLH has introduced us to the concept of bedazzling your lady parts with expensive glittery sparklers. Forget a night out or a brazilian (pedestrian!)–if your sex/love life are bumming you out, it’s time to break out the Swarovskis. Really, whose vagina CAN’T afford that? It’s an essential!

Not much else needs to be said, I guess. Except that I can’t wait to see what Pat Robertson has to say about the pact JLH’s crystal-encrusted hoochie made with the devil in order to get this much publicity.

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i am not a gleek.

I just really really like Kevin McHale, who plays Artie. OK, and the whole show, but I will NOT blog about that.

However, I did want to mention that I think McHale is terrifically quirky and lends a bit of strangeness to an otherwise very clean-cut show. I thought it couldn’t get any better when I realized he had played Neil, the morgue assistant/fangbanger, in True Blood.

But my little sis Hannah tells me that before these shows, Texas native McHale was actually in a boy band called NLT (Not Like Them). Think N’Sync, only in 2007.

He’s obviously multi-talented, and willing to work multiple angles of the industry. And he’s the only one of them that seems truly committed to the ridiculous spectacle that is a boy band dance move.

Here he is, introducing the band:

And here’s their big single:

My inner 13-year-old is squealing.

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america’s next top midget

So I was watching Cycle 12…and marveling at how frighteningly doll-like Allison looks…

…when something at commercial caught my attention.

“We’re taking high fashion to a new height. If you’re 5’7″ and under…apply…Maybe the fiercest models come in small packages!”

Doth my ears deceive me?  ANTM for little people?!

Nope. It’s for real. Tyra’s seriously inviting the shorties to play. It’s going to be the Land of the Lilliputians, but  fierce, as Tyra would say.

Oh, that I were stateside, that I might humiliate myself for the chance to be the first dwarf named America’s Next Top Model.  I would show up in flats, with a pair of heels and my own stool (just in case).  I would fawn. I would prance.  I would claim to be there to discover my short model potential, while secretly plotting to write a post-show exposé.  At least that’s what I’d tell you, beezies.  Vain pygmy that I am, I’d be lying.

But I’ll resign myself. It’s OK I couldn’t make it, I guess–especially since I probably would have gotten trampled by a horde of teeny tiny model wannabes at yesterday’s NYC tryouts!

According to the CW,

An altercation occurred today at a casting call for the next edition of “America’s Next Top Model” in New York City.  Representatives of The CW are working and cooperating with local authorities on the matter.

At least the NYT finally had something juicy to say:

It was America’s next top melee.

Puntastic, NYT.  Continue!

An open casting call for the reality television program “America’s Next Top Model” turned into mayhem on Saturday afternoon in Midtown Manhattan. Fights broke out, three people were arrested and at least six others suffered minor injuries after they were pushed down in a crush of thousands of aspiring models waiting in line to be discovered.

The police did not say what caused the disturbance outside the audition site at the Park Central Hotel, at 210 West 55th Street, but would-be contestants for the 13th season of the popular program blamed a lack of organization, frayed nerves and a brief panic that erupted when someone screamed that a smoking overheated car was on fire and about to explode.

“Everyone got thrown everywhere,” said Annina Manttari, 23, of Hackensack, N.J. “People were getting run over.”

And that was before the little imps were hauled off for inciting riots!

Now that’s fierce.

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and now we’ve come to the end

Of The L Word, anyway.  Too bad “The Last Word” was such a downer. Can I get a collective sigh?

It’s so sad it had to end this way, with such an unsatisfying ending. Dismal, with it almost painfully clear that Jenny was preparing the tribute video as her departing note to the group before announcing that no one liked her and offing herself.  And the faulty railing? Yes, we got it, guys–she was going to fall.  A joyous departure, for Tina and Bette to New York, Shane to freedom, Jenny to who knows, etc. etc., would have been so much better.

Even the “retrospective” was kinda lame. At least Russell Simmons, Mogul, let us know that the first time he saw the show, he watched four episodes back-to-back–on the StairMaster!

Thanks, Russell. (In all fairness, I did love his cameo with Carmen and Shane at the Wax launch.) And the retrospective isn’t all bad.  The best part? Daniela Sea waxing political on trans presence and class issues on TV.

But leaving the sixth season, with its disastrous murder mystery plot and humorless writing, aside (can we call it the Bizarro last season?), the majority of The L Word made my life better.

I don’t want to sound trite, but it really did change things for me.  I was already out, but when my friend Manda introduced it to me, I was just out (I’d say a few weeks), and about to go to a seriously unfriendly place to teach. A small town, somewhat close-minded, and though openly accepting, terrified by open bi- or homosexuality.

So after I figured that out, I watched The L Word every night (at least until I moved to the nearest city), and have often watched it since then in order to relax.  Some people have issues with its believability, or fashion, or Jenny being odd (I have to say, I identify with her), or Bette cheating too much (gotta say, I like how noble she always seems despite that).  I have my own objections (Max is kind! Be nice to him and stop giving him ridiculous facial hair!), but ultimately they don’t matter too much.  I will always appreciate the show for one reason: It made me feel safe.

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insanity.

It must be said: The L Word is imploding. Evidence:

  • Alice may be getting left, again. This is because the suggested threesome between her, Tasha and Jamie seems to be devolving into an oncoming Jamie-Tasha affair. And they met because Alice saved a teen from suicide!  There is no justice in this world. I hope the cute designer from Season 5 reappears in time to show them up…
  • Max has gotten left, again. And is being subjected to Jenny’s insane Wonka-esque baby shower and breast pump presents.   Can’t he get a break?  (At least the awesome Daniela Sea gets some more lines.)
  • Jenny is ruining everyone’s relationships, including Dylan and Helena’s. Quoth Shane, “She’s just so inappropriate.” Sigh.
  • Shane is locked into craziness with Jenny. Set her free!
  • Elizabeth Berklee, aka VD, continues to come on to Bette. I am simultaneously bored and grossed out.
  • There is almost no humor left.  And an episode titled “Lactose Intolerant”?? I know the writers are running out of “L” puns, but give me a break.

Perhaps E.B. really is the best expression of what the L Word universe is coming to: slightly desperate, lifted, and squealing loudly in an attempt to be seen as fun. Again, sigh. It’s so hopelessly SATC (Girls!!! EEE!!!).

Though maybe there is hope, in the form of Kit and Sunset Boulevard, who is pretty hot for a Kit love interest. I mean, she’s been with some real duds: Benjamin, Angus.  Ivan Aycock was OK, but had a ridiculous name and an issue with honesty. And Papi would have been awesome, but Kit isn’t that way inclined (and the whole thing almost seemed like a mommy issue).  So a sweetheart drag queen who’s hot in and out of dresses? Major step up! I hope they work out.

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re: new L Word plotlines

Tom is lame. I repeat, lame.

And Elizabeth Berklee = herpes + lipstick. Gross.

WHO IS WRITING THIS?!

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Jenny and Shane: WTF?

As Bee has noted, this L Word storyline seems a tad incestuous. So what’s behind this odd pairing? Perhaps the writers are trying to milk the murder mystery angle, with constant threats against and hookups with Jenny.  Maybe they want to complicate Shane’s already impossibly tangled emotional state. Or maybe they’ve just run out of ideas?

—Zy

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