TV on Tap: TLC Gets a Hot and Crazy Merman, “The Walking Dead” Re-Shot Its Death Scenes and That “Punky Brewster” Zombie Episode
Oh, TLC, you’ve found a way to overwhelm my sense of taste.
The Daily Beast‘s Jace Lacob sings the praises of Chopped, the Ted Allen-hosted cooking competition, noting how it manages to mix the thrill of competition while also teaching viewers a little about food, something the Food Network has mostly left behind.
Saturday Night Live cast member Nasim Pedrad has nabbed a pilot role and it’s one that keeps her in the SNL family. Pedrad has joined the Lorne Michaels-produced comedy pilot created by and starring SNL writer John Mulaney (he co-created Stefon).
Production on Sullivan & Son has been suspended as series star Steve Byrne heals from an injury to his face. We wish Byrne a speedy recovery.
Considering how it continues to be one of the biggest shows on TV, it’s not a surprise that HBO has already renewed Game of Thrones for a fourth season.
In wonderful news, TVLine reports the faboo Keiko Agena has been picked for a guest role on the ABC Family drama Twisted. Her character, a grief specialist, will debut in the second episode.
What you watched (or just recorded) on Sunday night wasn’t the original ending planned for The Walking Dead. The episode’s two major deaths were part of the original version, but the details were different. They made the right changes.
I love it when TV goes absolutely off-the-rails bonkers. (For instance, the fourth season of ‘Til Death.) The folks over at io9 put together a list of shows that suddenly veered into sci-fi territory, despite not being sci-fi shows. Sadly, I missed that Punky Brewster zombie epsiode.
As MSNBC expands its weekend lineup, frequent guest Karen Finney will host an hour long show, and we’ve already gotten the first idiotic response. Someone at the right wing Media Research Center scoffed at the description of Finney as an “African-American host” tweeting, “Would the average viewer be able to guess that? Or is Boehner a shade more tan?” Seriously? Are we now applying the paper bag test to decide who gets to talk about their own history?
Meanwhile The debut of All In with Chris Hayes brought good ratings news for the cable network. Not only did Hayes’ debut improve on The Ed Show, in the target demo All In came very close to beating its time slot competitor The O’Reilly Factor (which, to be fair, had a guest-host that night). I’m thrilled. All In has quickly turned out to be exactly the show cable show needs, a nightly hour that doesn’t suffer from the sense of ADD that strikes just about every talk show out there, one where substantial discussion is the rule, not the exception.
The New Ricki Lake Show (syndicated) Check local listings
Ricki‘s holding another pajama party today with RuPaul and Jai Rodriguez is on the guest list.
Days of Our Lives (NBC) Check local listings
Yesterday, Kate pulled the “I could bury you if I wanted to” card on Nick. Will she have to do the same to Sonny as he comes close to telling Will that he saw her with Rafe? We’ll be following the action with a liveblog starting at 1PM Eastern. Be sure to join us!
Nature (PBS) Check local listings
Tonight’s Nature looks at the complicated way plants communicate with each other, summon insect allies and make sure they propagate future generations. I just hope this doesn’t include experts talking about plants like they have human emotions.
Nova (PBS) Check local listings
Was ancient Greek thinker Archimedes responsible for creating the first supercomputer? The mathematician’s attempts to predict an eclipse may reveal that kind of advanced computing.
Arrow (CW) 8:00 PM ET
There’s Vertigo on the streets of Starling City, which gives Oliver an excuse to visit The Count and say, “Hey, how’s it going? How are you feeling? Are you well enough to be secretly be still running your drug empire from here? I’m just asking for a friend.”
Suburgatory (ABC) 8:30 PM ET
Since ABC is moving the show back to its old, tougher time slot, Suburgatory decides to give viewers incentive to follow. Tonight, George agrees to participate in a “Dads of Chatswin” beefcake calendar… except the looming photoshoot leaves George obsessing about his body, much to Dallas‘ chagrin.
Spies of Warsaw (BBC America) 9:00 PM ET
David Tennant returns to the BBC as a Frenchman working at the Warsaw embassy in the days leading to World War II. “Allons-y!” Oh, and David Tennant and early 20th century European history? That’s a combination that should make my partner happy.
Modern Family (ABC) 9:00 PM ET
Sure, it sounds like a good idea for Mitch and Cam to plan a girls’ day out with Gloria and Lily, but all it takes is a few moments of awkwardness and girls’ day out becomes cultural sensitivity day.
Supernatural (CW) 9:00 PM ET
It’s been a few weeks since Sam completed the first task in closing the Gates of Hell. Tonight it’s time to reveal and attempt the second trial. I’m just keeping my fingers crossed this one does not have the word “bathe” in a context where “fully clothed” also makes sense.
How to Live with Your Parents (for the Rest of Your Life) (ABC) 9:30 PM ET
ABC’s newest comedy grabs my attention by featuring the likable Sarah Chalke, increases my interest with the comic delivery of Elizabeth Perkins… and then loses me with Brad Garrett. There’s plenty of potential in a comedy about a Gen Xer boomeranging back into her childhood bedroom, but this one looks like it captures the self-involved privilege that made Up All Night tedious at times.
Southland (Syfy) 10:00 PM ET
Cooper continues to struggle between looking at Hicks and feeling his sense of loneliness grow. Tonight he swallows his pride and try and make amends with Cesar.
It’s a Brad Brad World (Bravo) 10:00 PM ET
A 2 Broke Girls star turns to Brad for help in making sure the general public doesn’t immediately think of a ketchup and mustard-colored waitress uniform whenever her name is mentioned.
The Soup (E!) 10:00 PM ET
Since The Soup won’t go on vacation without giving fans some pop culture clips, it’s time to present The Soup Awards, with one trophy going to RuPaul.
The Americans (FX) 10:00 PM ET
Oh, FX, please never combine one of your ridiculously-addictive dramas with the phrase “two week hiatus”. I thought it was bad with American Horror Story, but it’s much tougher to go a week without this show. — especially, when the previews hint at Nina‘s cover getting blown. There had better be plenty of crazy wigs for Matthew Rhys to make up for this.
My Crazy Obsession (TLC) 10:30 PM ET
I’ll admit it. I may largely detest TLC’s programming, but they can bait me to watch with the right kind of gay pandering. I watched their Las Vegas reality show because I heard Jaymes Vaughn showed up for a couple minutes (though I could only bear to watch Jaymes’ part, so it wasn’t particularly effective pandering). Tonight, My Crazy Obsession includes a way hot gay guy who wants to be a merman. That’s right, TLC has lured me in by dedicating a segment to a gay man with a hot bod and a hobby that involves shirtlessness. My dignity. I miss it.
The Late Show with David Letterman (CBS) 11:35 PM ET
Dave has an amah-zing lineup scheduled tonight with Rachel Maddow and Louis C.K. That should wake up the brain cells starving for stimulation after I’ve watched My Crazy Obsession.
What will you be watching tonight? Please share in the comments!
Hannibal (NBC) 10:00 PM ET
Oh. Yes. Bryan Fuller is writing TV I can watch again. All is good until the comparisons to Awake‘s ratings begin.
Tabatha Takes Over (Bravo) 10:00 PM ET
Bryan Fuller and Tabatha Coffey debuting on the same night? Yay!
- April 3, 2013 4:57 am
This just can’t be the end. How can a show so full of heart, so full of sweetness and love and humor not be embraced by everyone? It escapes me.
If this is it, though, if this is the last time we get to see Bryan and David and Goldie and Shania and Jane and Rocky and Clay, then let me take a moment to thank the writers, the cast and the network for giving us an entire season of this fantastic show.
We begin with our boys facing off against the host of wedding decisions that need to be made. Bryan, the producer, wants things to be elegant. David, the lovable geek, wants things to be fun. Trust me, folks, fun is the way to go. Pomp and circumstance may seem spectacular on paper, but it won’t be a wedding people will remember.
Anyhoo, what David really wants is for Bryan’s mom to be at the wedding. Bryan pouts and whines, because he doesn’t want her ruining his day of joy. Boy, did that bring back memories. I stressed so hard over whether or not to invite my father and brother for pretty much the same reason.
Oh, and to people who don’t think these two are affectionate? We’re less than five minutes in when David goes into his Gollum impression and Bryan says, “And you were so close to getting some tonight” before David leans in to nibble Bryan’s neck. Just wanted to point that out.
Bryan concedes on the mom issue and so we will finally get to meet Mama Collins.
Shania’s Weirdness of the Week takes the form of her freaking out over the fact that she got her name because her mom and dad made her while listening to Shania Twain. First, was that really an appropriate story to tell your little girl? Second, do we really need Shania to obsess over a new minor detail of her life?
Happily, this very minor plot point is actually just an excuse to bring Clay into the story. And while it is very sad that we don’t get to see him shirtless, he does provide some much needed Clay-ness to the show. I think TNN really did itself a disservice by so under-utilizing the hilarious and adorkable Jayson Blair.
When Shania brings up the story of how she got her name, he says in his impossibly dense way, “That was you?” to Goldie. I don’t know how he manages to deliver these lines, which clearly paint him as a cad, with such innocence that I can’t be mad at him. He really has absolutely no idea how the things he says hurts Goldie.
And when he finds out Goldie is going to drop his last name, he has a small tantrum because he thinks that will mean they’re no longer a family. Poor Clay. He really has no clue as to how over his relationship with Goldie is. Though, to be fair, she didn’t help the situation by sleeping with him.
Mary Kay Place (Latter Days) joins the cast as Bryan’s mom! What a simply marvelous casting choice.
Given how Bryan is basically Ryan Murphy, I wonder how much Colleen resembles Ryan’s own mother?
Very quickly we discover that much like David’s mom, Colleen likes David better. Poor Bryan. It’s so hard for him to be the star in his own world when he keeps getting upstaged.
She immediately sets out to undermine Bryan’s every wedding idea, which makes him sulk. He and David decide that in order to prove how united they are and committed they will just make all decisions based on draws from a hat.
No, I don’t get it either.
In complete defiance of all probability, every single draw goes David’s way. This includes ushers dressed up as Sith Lords. I love you David. You are my big dork fantasy.
Unwisely, Bryan ups the stakes by also letting the hat choose the baby’s name and of course that also goes to David. Bryan throws a full-out tantrum, which is entirely understandable even if it’s not really the best side of him.
Later, Bryan goes to have it out with his mom. He basically lays into her for not only not supporting his choices for the wedding, but for all the slights and failures when he was growing up.
This is such a wonderful scene. It shows what happens when two high-caliber actors get together with great material. Colleen doesn’t defend her mistakes. She owns them. She explains that she was just exhausted trying to keep up with Bryan—something I can easily believe.
And then she tells him he should let it go and that it’s time to grow up. It’s not mean, not the way she says it, and it’s something he needs to hear. It’s a really beautiful, honest moment and one that was worth waiting all season for.
The scene ends with Bryan realizing that he’s much more like his mother than he ever knew, and maybe that’s why they get on each other’s nerves.
The Shania name silliness comes to an end with Shania realizing her name makes her unique, which is something she always prided herself on before and apparently just forgot for the purposes of this plot.
After his talk with his mom, Bryan goes to make things up to David. They dance to Hootie and the Blowfish (Oh, God, the 90′s….) which is an awful song, but seeing these two dancing and laughing and being so in love fills me with joy.
And then they have sudden inspiration for the baby’s name—Sawyer Collins. It’s an awesome name, but I’m not sure how much sense that makes. I mean, they’ve already decided on having more kids. The next one will have to be something Sawyer-Collins, and won’t that be weird?
“These are our kids, Sawyer Collins and Julie Sawyer-Collins.”
I’ll let you all think that over.
Meanwhile, at the bowling alley, Clay proposes to Goldie. Oh dear. Shania overhears. Double oh dear. I don’t really want Shania to go off on a new obsession of planning her parent’s remarriage and that seems like the sort of thing she would do.
The Big Day
The day of the wedding is here! Now, let me just say that I find this a little weird. I mean, why have a commitment ceremony when very likely you can get legally married in a few months anyway? I don’t get it. But I’ll overlook it because we get one of my favorite things of the entire season.
Since the pilot, people have hated Nana—mostly, with good reason. She was a racist, homophobic, horrible woman.
However, the writers had a plan that none of us gave them credit for. This woman has grown and evolved as she has encountered new ideas, new people and new experiences. Now that she has met black people and gay people, she has had her whole world expanded.
First she apologizes to Shania for ruining her fake wedding. Then she gives a wonderful toast to Bryan and David for opening her eyes. Having this close-minded, backward-thinking woman’s attitude turned around through her friendship with two gay men is the most subversive thing any show has ever done. The New Normal deserves massive credit for giving Jane a whole season-long arc and showing that even those who seem irredeemable can be saved from ignorance and hate.
Frances and Colleen have some really great scenes together. It’s clear that the modern, no-holds-barred woman that Frances represents is not Colleen’s cup of tea. I hope we get to see more of these two in the next season.
Well, to no one’s surprise, the baby interrupts the wedding. Sometimes it’s okay to be predictable.
The delivery scene was another awesome picture of “the new normal” that this show is depicting. Goldie being comforted by Jane. Bryan and David there helping to bring their baby into the world. Colleen holding Goldie’s hand. Frances on the other side, offering comfort and support.
I was expecting the birth to be the end, but the show isn’t done yet. Jane has a sit-down with Goldie where she says they both got what they wanted. Goldie thinks this means that Jane wants to go back to Ohio where they worship football.
Jane’s response: “I want to say thank you Goldie for changing my life. Look at what you’ve done. You came here, you got this incredible apartment for you and your daughter. You started your own business. You showed me how to be an independent woman. And now I’ve got green in the bank and a black friend named Rocky. I don’t ever want to go back to the way things were. Why would you?”
Excuse me, I have something in my eye…
Look, I know Jane was a horrible person. But I believe this moment would not have been nearly as powerful if she had not walked such a long way to get to where she is. So I applaud the writers and I tip my hat to Ellen Barkin for committing to this role.
Shania, it turns out, also doesn’t want her mom to marry her dad again. I am relieved beyond words. She is worried that if Goldie does marry Clay again, things will go back to how they were, and Shania doesn’t want that.
So she runs away to the beach where it all began. Goldie, Rocky and the boys track her down and she explains that she wanted to remind her mom of when they had last sat on the beach and talked about changing their lives.
Oh Shania, I love you, you crazy, weird, freak of a child.
Bryan and David decide to have their ceremony right there, right then. They slap together a beach-themed altar. They hire a local busker to play music for them. And then Father Michael arrives to perform the ceremony.
Okay, I kind of liked that he decided to do the ceremony in spite of his earlier refusal. I found his excuses about why he couldn’t do it to be rather flimsy and unacceptable, especially after all his “no, the Catholic Church loves you gays and no one cares what the Pope says anyway” spiel.
So seeing him realize the error of his ways was really nice. “Well,” he says, looking up at the sky. “No lightning bolts….” Maybe he had a little journey to walk too.
I really like The New Normal. It makes me laugh, it makes me sniffle, it makes me cringe. But what it does the most that I think is so important for a show is that it makes me feel good.
I want to thank you all for chiming in and contributing to the discussion of this sometimes hilarious, sometimes painful but entirely unique show over the last few months. I hope we get a chance to do it again with a season 2.
Missed the episodes? Want to watch them again?
- tiger cub
- April 3, 2013 5:02 am
Previously, on Smash
We open on a post-coital Karen shuffling to the kitchen in a t-shirt to make coffee. It’s not the shirt she swiped from Jimmy Charming last episode, and shouldn’t it be? Jimmy shuffles out after her wrapped in an afghan that you know Karen’s grandmother knitted for her never dreaming it would end up wrapped around some greasy half-naked dude who defiled her granddaughter atop it.
They grossly let us know that they banged repeatedly and for hours and are about to do it again when the buzzer rings. Karen hits the intercom. It’s her father (Dylan Baker), flown in from Iowa for a conference on milk machine technology or whatever the hell it is people from Iowa talk about. Karen’s panicked but Jimmy thinks letting Dad know he defiled his daughter repeatedly atop her grandmother’s quilt is the funniest thing ever. She forces him into his clothes and out the window, but not before Dad makes it to the door and catches a glimpse of Jimmy’s leather jacket-clad back on the fire escape.
Ivy and Sam are on their way to rehearsal when Ivy’s phone rings. It’s her mother, former Broadway star Leigh Conroy (Bernadette Peters). Ivy ignores the call because she’s still mad that Leigh didn’t come to the Liaisons opening. She didn’t even send a card; Sam suggests that Hallmark doesn’t make a “Can’t make it because I’m jealous of you” card. He also exposits that he’s back with Bombshell.
Stage Manager Linda intercepts them outside the rehearsal building, saying that Tom and Eileen need to see her immediately.
Upstairs Julia is composing an email to Scott Nichols (Jesse L. Martin) when she’s supposed to be revising today’s scenes. Tom says that her story with Scott is over. He compares them to him and Sam; he knows he hurt Sam but he’s giving him space. Julia is not on board with a similar plan for herself and Scott but before they can get any further into it Stage Manager Linda announces Ivy’s arrival.
Julia is aghast that Tom hasn’t told Ivy but he insists he didn’t want to do it over the phone and besides “she” wanted to talk to Ivy first. The door opens and Ivy’s all she who? Julia, Tom and Eileen draw her aside and assure her it’s nothing bad (it’s something bad). They’ve cast Marilyn’s mother. Ivy’s hoping it’s Patti Lupone and before Eileen can fully disabuse her of that notion Hurricane Conroy makes landfall.
Everyone insists that it’s totally up to Ivy but she has to understand that without Leigh the show will wither and die and everyone associated with it will die penniless and alone, so whataya say, kid. Ivy: “I say…yay?” Ivy leads Leigh off to introduce her to the company while the cabal hopes that the mood of false conviviality will last long enough for the Times photographer who’s shooting for the cover story that Eileen’s buddy Richard Francis (Jamey Sheridan) is writing.
Karen is rehearsing “Broadway Here I Come” at Hit List rehearsal. In the background Kyle and Blake are being shmoopy.
“Just one night of love and I’m rid of that terrible knit cap.”
Derek and Scott arrive and Derek calls a halt. Mr. Cartwright does that wildly enthusiastic proud papa applause thing and Derek thinks it’s adorable that the little people approve. He suggests Mr. Cartwright attend the benefit fundraiser that’s happening tonight and Scott notes that he’s adding Ana doing the Diva’s song to the program. Ana is sure there isn’t enough time to get the number performance-ready, as if time has any meaning in the Smashiverse. Derek sees that Jimmy is absent.
Cut to Jimmy heading for rehearsal on his phone with Kyle. He seems to have accessed an emotion other than “snarly” but his happiness fades when he catches sight of the guy who assaulted him when he went to retrieve his notebooks back in episode two. Jimmy beats a hasty retreat right into the title sequence.
Tom approaches Ivy, sitting with Sam, and apologizes for the awkwardness, saying his hands were tied by Eileen. Ivy’s all whatevs and leaves, followed by Sam without a word. Tom calls places for Ivy and Leigh’s first scene. He invites Leigh to hold her script but she’s already off book. Ivy’s all, of course you are. Leigh asks where she should stand. Ivy: “Right behind me.”
Hit List. Ana is playing piano while some chorines crawl across the top of it.
Derek and Karen chat about the number a moment and Karen exposits that her father thinks she made a mistake leaving Bombshell. Derek suggests she bring him to the benefit so he can get a better sense of the show.
Ana goes off for a costume fitting just as Jimmy arrives. Karen says hey and Jimmy blows her off.
Bombshell. Ivy and Leigh are playing a scene where Norma Jean is trying to convince Gladys to let the neighbors adopt her away like it’s a scene from Pollyanna. Bobby speaks for the nation when he says, “This is boring. I want my catfight already.”
Tom pulls them aside because he can’t understand their artistic choices. He reminds them of Gladys’s mental instability and about how she once tried to kidnap Norma Jean by stuffing her in a duffle bag, but the ladies insist that the scene is all about how much they love each other.
Meanwhile Eileen takes a call from Richard. It’s about doing the Times story but it’s really about letting them flirt and setting up Richard as Eileen’s new love interest.
Hit List. Karen checks in with Jimmy who says it’s all good but he wants to keep their sexing on the DL. Before they can get too into it Jimmy spots his assailant and hustles him out. Jimmy apparently owes the gentleman in the soiled wife beater some money. He pleads that he needs time to put it together. Wife Beater says, “I’ll see ya soon” and drops Jimmy a saucy wink that makes me hope that the debt has something to do with Jimmy’s previous life as a man-whore.
Derek catches up with Mr. Cartwright (“Call me Roger.”) and offers him a ticket to the benefit, asking him to give Karen the chance to show him why she left Bombshell. Roger non sequiturially replies, “Nice jacket.” Puzzled, Derek thanks him and returns to rehearsal.
Bombshell. Leigh catches up with Sam and in the course of their conversation Sam learns that Tom lied about being forced to accept her. She asks if there’s any chance he and Tom will reconcile and I’m thinking that the answer is probably no after that reveal.
Yeah, we’re gonna break this shit apart in about twenty seconds
Eileen invites Julia to the benefit and she leaps at the chance to stalk Scott there. Tom calls places for another run at the adoption scene and pulls the pin on the mother/daughter relationship grenade, asking the ladies to draw on their own relationship to inform the scene.
Leigh talks about how she performed in Anything Goes through her first trimester pregnant with Ivy and won the Tony at age 27. Ivy: “On what calendar?” Leigh next tells of how Ivy got fat when she was eight, while Leigh was playing Maria in The Sound of Music. Ivy was desperate to play a von Trapp child so Leigh had the producer audition her for Kurt.
Tom tries to get them back to the scene but Ivy fires back with how Leigh watched Ivy play Little Red in Into the Woods across from an actress who got a standing ovation. Leigh told 12-year-old Ivy that if she’d been born with that kind of talent she’d have gotten a standing ovation too but she wasn’t so she’d just have to work that much harder. The chorines are appalled.
Tom again tries to get them into the scene, like that’s gonna happen, but Ivy tells Leigh that even now when Ivy’s made it, Leigh has to be there to overshadow her. She continues that whatever happens, at least she knows that the best part of her career is ahead of her and she walks away.
Karen sings “Broadway Here I Come” at the benefit and is well-received. Derek tells Roger that she’s a star. He replies that she could have been had Karen not thrown away her Broadway dream to follow Derek. Derek protests that he played no part in her decision but Roger fires back that a man would step up and admit his part while a boy would sneak out a window.
Scott congratulates Jimmy on the performance and Jimmy asks for an advance on his cut of the show. Scott explains that this is non-profit theatre. He asks if something’s wrong but Jimmy deflects.
Scott spots Julia and cracks a joke about a restraining order. They chit chat and he calls her out for trying too hard to make it up to him.
Richard arrives late and finds Eileen. Flirting commences.
Ana performs the Diva’s number, “Reach For Me”. She’s wearing this crazy skirt and when she grasps a handle that descends from the ceiling she rises into the air and the skirt unfurls into bolts of cloth that she and the chorines use to perform an aerial dance.
I like the song. I like the dance. But I don’t like the song and the dance together. The dance is extremely visually compelling and had it been performed to the same music sans lyrics it would have worked perfectly but the lyrics are not strong enough to compete with the visual.
While this is going on Jimmy diverts the cloak room attendant and raids the coat check in search of ill-gotten booty. Derek busts him. He’s dismissive but when Jimmy admits he’s in trouble Derek is intrigued. Jimmy confesses that he used to work for Wife Beater but he broke free a year ago. He stole $8,000 to make the break. Derek asks why Jimmy didn’t come to him since they’re friends now. Before Jimmy can really process that the cloak room attendant returns. Derek covers by saying they’re just getting their coats and anvils, “They match” as he tosses Jimmy his jacket.
Julia and Scott intersect again. Flirting commences.
Derek introduces Roger to Jimmy and Roger clocks the twin jackets.
They’re douchebags! Identical douchebags, all the way!
Eileen, Richard, Scott, Jimmy, Kyle, Derek and Ana cluster up. Richard is enchanted with Ana and Kyle says she’s huge in the second act. He departs and Jimmy can’t believe that Kyle said that since the Diva only has one song in Act I. Scott decrees that whatever Richard wants, Richard gets and Richard wants more Ana.
Richard also wants Eileen. To remove any conflict of interest he decides to assign the Bombshell story to another writer and find something else to write about which obviously will be Ana which will set up a huge rivalry between Ana and Karen that will undoubtedly pay off huge in season three.
Bombshell. Leigh and Ivy spar again some more and long story short they need Leigh’s name to open the show. Ivy responds that while that may be true once Bombshell is over she’ll never need Leigh again.
Apres-Hit List. Roger tells Karen he understands now why she left Bombshell, to be with Jimmy. He’s concerned that she’s making a mistake but she replies that if it is a mistake she’s already made it.
Hurricane Conroy, Day Two. Leigh and Ivy rehearse a different scene, after Norma Jean has become Marilyn. Gladys wishes she could edit the days of their lives into a better story, launching into a new number, “Hang the Moon”. The number starts out in the rehearsal space but soon shifts into fantasy.
The number serves as a reconciliation piece both for Gladys and Marilyn and for Leigh and Ivy and for that function it works. It calls in thematic notes from “Second Hand White Baby Grand”, which raises questions as to where these two numbers fall within the show’s structure. I find the song a little treacly but maybe after a couple of hours of emotional manipulation Broadway style I’d feel differently.
Derek hands Jimmy Charming eight grand in cash. Jimmy departs and runs into Karen and Roger, who tells him his show is “interesting” and maybe he and Karen can have dinner with Roger and the missus on opening night.
Jimmy wonders why Karen told Daddy about them but she explains he spotted him out the window. He acknowledges that he’s been weird lately but promises things will be better going forward.
Derek hails Roger a cab. Roger apologizes to Derek, saying he thought he and Karen were involved, but he knows now he was wrong. Derek clocks that Karen and Jimmy totally did it despite Derek’s threats.
Julia meets Scott at a diner. He asks her to serve as dramaturg for Hit List since he needs to expand the Diva role into a second lead. She agrees to read the book.
Bombshell. Tom apologizes to Ivy for all the drama he’s created. She replies that she knows he could have kept Leigh out and didn’t and that working with Leigh has been torture. He defends that he did what was right for the show and she says she is too. They’re no longer friends.
Jimmy pays off Wife Beater, who expresses surprise. Wife Beater invites Jimmy in for a farewell f*ck but Jimmy declines. So Wife Beater offers him a bump for the road, which Jimmy accepts.
And it turns out that “Collins” is not Jimmy’s real last name. But Wife Beater promises to keep Jimmy’s secret, and drug dealers are so reliable.
Smash moves to Saturdays beginning this week, so tune in then and hit AE/TBL Sunday morning for the recap. Be prepared to discuss LIZA.
- April 3, 2013 5:43 am
”I didn’t think we were going to have to battle with and learn from all these older people,” says Christian Taboada. ”I didn’t know it was spring break with senior citizens.”
That is essentially the basis for the new reality TV series Forever…
- Metro Weekly (Newspaper Magazine of Gay and Lesbian DC)
- April 2, 2013 7:25 pm
”I didn’t think we were going to have to battle with and learn from all these older people,” says Christian Taboada. ”I didn’t know it was spring break with senior citizens.”
That is essentially the basis for the new reality TV series Forever…
- Metro Weekly (Newspaper Magazine of Gay and Lesbian DC)
- April 2, 2013 7:25 pm
The homestretch of RuPaul’s Drag Race is giving a massive edge to Jinkx Monsoon, who won her second challenge on Monday with her hilarious, tear-streaked, deeply crazy telenovela performance. Even if guest actor Wilmer Valderrama looked perplexed by the whole exercise, Jinkx was an obvious and polished standout.
The less-than-polished queens this week included season-long nemeses Coco Montrese, who lip-synced for her life yet again last night, and Alyssa Edwards (a.k.a. Justin Johnson of Mesquite, TX), who has made a habit of redeeming herself with stellar lip-syncing work. After perhaps the greatest, most dynamic lip-sync battle in the history of the show (set to Paula Abdul‘s still fabulous “Cold Hearted”), Coco stayed and Alyssa was ordered to sashay away.
We caught up with Alyssa to discuss her battle with Coco, Jinkx’s streak of great performances, and his secret shyness.
AfterElton: Alyssa! You were engaged in some intense verbal drama this season. Is it exhausting to watch it back on TV?
Alyssa Edwards: It definitely is. My life isn’t really centered much around it, because I’m around children 90% of my life. Being in that intense situation, [drama] comes along with the territory of being a queen and entertainer. Watching it from the watch parties, I’m like, “Oh my gosh! I need me a Tylenol PM! I need to take me a nap!” But it’s a competition and the opportunity to be the next drag superstar. There are 14 talented entertainers — some of the finest in the industry of female impersonation.
AfterElton: You won the RuPaul ballet challenge, but struggled in the more acting-based, dialogue-heavy challenges. Was there a dream challenge you were waiting for?
Alyssa Edwards: I won’t say that acting wasn’t my favorite because I enjoyed those experiences. I gave my all, but there were five or six people who were better. I went into this experience with the mentality, “Just be your best in every situation you’re placed in.” Leaving the competition, I found my most rewarding challenges were the ones where I stepped outside my comfort zone, the things I probably would’ve never done. Those have inspired me to refresh and revamp my gig. This is an opportunity for me to travel state to state, stage to stage and let fans see a different sides of Alyssa Edwards. As for a dream challenge? Anything athletic, I probably would’ve won! [Laughs.] I’m being funny with you. And I’m not that funny. I probably would’ve been good at this next challenge coming up, the drag transformation. I was doing my best with the whole acting thing, and the crazy thing is, I was little boy growing up who was a geeky theater nerd — like theater tech. I was begging to be onstage! I didn’t care if I was just in the chorus because I really couldn’t sing. Maybe I could just dance! So for me, I was really honestly, I was trying in the acting challenges, but I was getting beat down a little bit because I’m very competitive and I wasn’t excelling as much as the other girls.
AfterElton: I didn’t realize until I looked at the stats, but Jinkx has ranked in the top for every challenge since episode three. Lately you’d been ranking near the bottom. Does it wear on you, trying to reverse a streak of bad weeks?
Alyssa Edwards: Not really. I’m in a competition every day of my life. That’s the name of the game. I think Jinkx is phenomenal. She embodies what a drag superstar should be. She is someone that has mastered the act of being onstage. I appreciate and applaud that. I’ve seen her as a frontrunner since the beginning. Maybe not day one, but from the very first challenge. She’s broken down all the barriers, all the walls. Maybe I still have walls up. What people kind of don’t know about me is — and this sounds kind of silly — I’m shy! Justin is shy! There are some things I haven’t gotten in tune with. With being a great actor, you have got to be able to embody a character and allow those walls to be broken down. And laugh at yourself! And have fun with it. I started to taking [myself] seriously after the perfume commercial challenge. I needed to laugh with it! Have fun with it! That’s something I’ve learned from the Drag Race experience.
AfterElton: In the ongoing war between you and Coco, you were definitely the more likable half. Is it validating to know that?
Alyssa Edwards: I mean, Miss Gay America was a dream of mine. But really, I just didn’t really work out. I wasn’t a good fit. I felt like at some point I thought, “I’ve already moved on.” Six months later, I’d won another pageant. It was kind of like, “Let’s get away from this situation. We’re both here competing. I’m done with it” I think he was holding onto some things because he felt like it’d affected his reign. But there are some things I look back on that situation and say, “Why did you say that, Justin? That was kind of ridiculous.” There are things I would’ve redone differently, but I don’t think it’s more validating to feel like I came out on top because it was a win-win situation for the both of us. I might not have won that night, but he was a good representative. I didn’t even put too much thought into it afterward, to be honest with you.
AfterElton: That final lip-sync was downright incredible. You and Coco were both astounding. On Untucked, we saw that Detox might be in the bottom with you. In retrospect, do you wish you’d competed in that lip-sync against her?
Alyssa Edwards: No. If I’m going to go home — I mean, at this point, all the girls are good. I was very OK with it in the end. I was a little surprised because backstage, Detox went through a lot getting ready for the runway look. We all assumed or thought — well, we all thought I’d be in the bottom [laughs] — but we assumed Detox was too. They’re both fierce entertainers. I was never disappointed that I was in the bottom. I did make that comment and I hold true to it; I wanted America to see what I can do and what I’m good at. And all they’re seeing is that I was sucking at everything! I was giving my all, but they were better! So when “Cold Hearted Snake” happened, I gave it my best, but I knew that I would come up short next to Jinkx, who’s brilliant, and Alaska, who’s hysterical. I knew that. So between Roxxy, Coco, Detox, and I — two of us are going to be there. I wanted to be strategic. That’s my competitive side. But I was OK that it was Coco, and I applaud her for coming out on top. Do I wish I’d [won]? Absolutely.
AfterElton: Do you think you would’ve fared better in, say, season two when someone like Tyra Sanchez won the competition thanks to her stage presence, looks, and ability to endear the judges?
Alyssa Edwards: I want to say this first: I don’t believe in stereotypes. I think it’s just drag, it’s not personal. And art is subjective. I don’t want to be placed into just a pageant queen stereotype because demographically here in Texas, that’s all I knew! If I wanted to get onstage and grab the spotlight, I had to do pageants. It was what I was born and bred to do here. I’ll tell you this, I said in the elimination lunch today that when I’m on the show, but my jokes are funny to me! I don’t want to be just a pageant queen, because I’m also a performer. I was born to be onstage. The “pageant” thing, a lot of that comes with having to be poised. But looks? That’s kind of not me at all. But if the shoe fits, wear it. And my shoe is sparkly and rhinestoned. That said, I am the definition of a Texas beauty queen, but at heart, I’m a comedy queen. I am the actress. But the judges didn’t see it that way.
As for the seasons, I would rather lose or be a runner-up to a bunch of sickening, fabulous entertainers and drag queens than take the easy route. I think every season has been relevant to its time. If anything, drag has evolved.
AfterElton: Finally, if you could only throw your support behind one remaining queen, who would you choose?
Alyssa Edwards: Jinkx Monsoon. I think he’s mastered the art. His craft is so wide-ranged. And the b*tch is funny. I would pay to go watch him on Saturday night, and I would sit in my cocktail dress, hold my clutch, and beat the wall. I would get tipsy and have a good time. That’s how I’m looking at it. I think Alaska is a very sweet person and I really enjoy him. Roxxy is a friend of mine. Detox is hysterical. Coco is actually a very good performer. But Jinkx Monsoon is leading the pack for being so wide-ranged. I can give credit where it’s due. I can give my curtsy, my little bow. I hope it’s him. He’s so deserving.
- April 2, 2013 3:05 pm