The A-List: The Walls Come Crumbling Down

Posted on August 16, 2011

Dear TV Guide,

Please allow the attached episode description to serve as every episode description for LOGO’s “exciting” reality series, The Real Fishwives of The A-List New York:

“Various stereotypes with no marketable job skills meet up in empty restaurants all over Manhattan to talk shit about other stereotypes with no marketable job skills. Special Guest Star: A Sassy Black Girl.”

You’re welcome.

The long version:

Austin and Jake are stuffing themselves into tight pants and for once, it’s not because Austin thinks he’s a lot thinner than he is. No, the boys are going fencing. Why? Forty-two minutes is a lot of airtime and you can only shoot the empty insides of so many restaurants. Austin offers his curriculum vitae in swordsmanship: “I have played a pirate for Halloween a time or two.” This is of a piece with his “I’ve been naked several times, therefore I should be a Playgirl model” line of thinking. While fencing, they discuss the fact that Derek blocked Austin’s number. “What are we, thirteen-year-old girls?” asks Austin with no trace of irony whatsoever. After the fencing session is over, he tells us “This is a great way for me to get my aggression out,” which is odd, because we thought going through his social circle one by one and hitting them was how he got his aggression out.

Reichen and TJ arrive in Hawaii at a hotel entirely populated by men in tanktops because Reichen has been hired to host something called The Paradise Festival.  TJ kisses Reichen’s hand in gratitude because he has no dignity whatsoever and apparently Reichen is the Gay Pope. Reichen indicates that he’s excited about meeting up in Hawaii with “one of the first guys I’m interested in since my breakup with Rodiney.”  Since Reichen becomes interested in just about any man who looks in his direction for longer than 40 seconds, we imagine that list is quite long. Suddenly, on camera, Reichen’s phone rings! It’s the guy who is part of that vast group of men whom Reichen is interested in and he’s calling now, while Reichen is in Hawaii, to tell him that he can’t make it. Because the phone lines in LA don’t reach New York. Reichen grimaces and moves his facial muscles, which is supposed to indicate crying even though his eyes remain as dry as Christina Aguilera’s hair. Later, Reichen and TJ hit the beach; the former shirtless and the latter dressed like Weezie Jefferson for some reason.

In an empty boutique, Derek meets up with Rodiney, who he describes as “My most dreaded ex-friend Rodiney,” inadvertently answering Austin’s question as to whether or not they’re 13-year-old girls. Derek puts on a “sad face” that was so hilariously inauthentic that he might as well have held up a sign that says “SAD” to go with it. He walks around in his big girl sweater and won’t meet Rodiney’s eyes.  He feels he needs to apologize to Rodiney because “Austin and I are no longer friends.” Someone explain this to us, because it’s been a while since grade school: why does he automatically have to apologize to Rodiney because he’s not friends with Austin anymore? Why not just come right out and say “My ‘hatred’ of Rodiney, which went on for months and was all-consuming, was really only because Austin hated him. I have no emotions or thoughts of my own. I just do and say whatever will make me more popular.”

LOGO, could we have a job writing subtitles for what all these whores are really saying? We can call them “subconscious titles.”

Rodiney, who isn’t as dumb as he looks (hard as that is to believe), isn’t buying it. “You turns like a different person like this,” he says emphatically. Derek doesn’t understand so he just agrees with him and keeps apologizing. “I juz hope I can truz you,” and with that, the summit talks end for the day. Derek closes the session with a ridiculously insincere “That looks really good on you.”

Later, Derek meets with his business partners who are very blonde and speak in very high-pitched voices – and  for once, they’re women. He tells us: “I hand-selected extremely capable business partners,” as if he harvested them from a vine or something. They’re named Joy and Sally. Of course they are.

The very excitable business partners come up with a plan for Derek to do a “boylesque” show as a way of launching their product, “Tansexual.” Derek leaps up and says he wants to try the product out. He strips down and Joy and Sally spray him until he glows like a radioactive persimmon.

Ryan asked Rodiney to walk in a fashion show for a client of his. Rodiney walks terribly, which is no crime because the clothes sucked. Ryan is nonetheless very proud of him. “Look at you,” he says to Rodiney while checking his lipstick, “All grown up and walking and paying your bills!” Rodiney tells him he’s going to take a girl out on a date and Ryan shudders at the thought of ladyparts anywhere near his person.

TJ and Reichen are at the Honolulu film festival, where, Reichen informs us,  “I”ll be walking the red carpet and be available for pictures.” We see one shot of him posing for a picture with one guy. Since this is the only guy willing to appear on camera wih him, Reichen turns on his seduction technique, which he apparently learned from watching Anne Bancroft in The Graduate; lots of narrowed eyes, long pauses, and head-tilted-back laughter, none of which seems to impress the guy. In fact, he tells Reichen he’s a bit freaked out by his behavior and beats a hasty retreat. Gay living rooms all over America erupt into spontaneous applause. Reichen does his bone-dry crying face and whines to TJ about all the “horrible” things happening to him, like men not dropping to their knees at the sight of him. In a way, we hope this show goes on for years, because the pleasure of watching Reichen age cannot be understated.

Derek and his fruitfly show up to a dance studio, where his business partner Sally, who is, of course, also a burlesque performer called Lady Chardonnay, waits for them with a gaggle of bored chorus boys. For no discernible reason Derek has tiny little pigtails on top of his head. They begin “rehearsing,” which seems to consist of Sally yelling out things like “Give me that Tansexual energy!” and, later, as the boys are supposed to be crawling after the irresistible Derek, she’s forced to intone unenthusiastically,  “More crawling… a little faster.” None of the chorus boys seem particularly keen on catching up with Derek and his pigtails.

It’s Rodiney’s Heterosexual Date Night! He gives the girl a rose, which is code for “I can get hard for you.” Like all first dates between a gay man and a straight woman, it’s awkward, punctuated by stretches of silence, and full of lies. “I got invited to do a Broadway play!” he pipes up. “Also, I’m bisexual.” With an entire production crew filming Rodiney’s gay reality show only inches from her face, she pretends to be shocked by this news. “It’s part of Brazilian culture” she offers weakly, like millions of other women forced to come up with a reason why their boyfriends watch soap operas and don’t play sports.

Derek’s summit talks continue as he meets with Nyasha in another empty restaurant. Nyasha informs us that she doesn’t buy his contrition and assesses him as “somewhat of a follower.” BITCH NAILED IT, DEREK. They immediately start running down the reasons why they don’t like each other. We’ve regressed backwards from high school to grade school, and now we’re in kindergarten. Derek moves away from alternating between criticizing Nyasha and apologizing to her by bringing up Austin because he knows they can reach common ground there.  “I want to show everyone that I’m not this big nasty bitch that everyone says I am,” he says. Oh, HONEY. That ship has sailed.  They end the summit by clinking drinks and toasting to friendshp. Derek silently prays that the footage of him calling her a “broke-down, disgusting, angry pig bitch” never airs.

Back in Hawaii, Reichen finds a reasonably attractive man willing to kiss him on camera. They do so.

Ryan and Austin meet up at their prearranged park bench. Austin doesn’t understand why Derek didn’t come to the party after sending him a thousand texts telling him he couldn’t come. Austin thinks his behavior is better and Ryan takes a moment from shaping her brows to burst out laughing.“I can almost guarantee your friendship with Derek is over,” he informs him (with no small amount of barely hidden glee). “But I just got my prescription to Prozac!” blurts out Austin.

It’s the night of Derek’s boylesque show and he’s nervous because “I’m going to perform a burlesque number in front of a hundred people.” Judging by the shots of the crowd, he overestimated by about 70. Ryan, Nyasha, Rodiney, Mike, Mike’s boyfriend (who is dressed like a 16-year-old), and for some reason, Mike’s dad, all show up to support their friend castmate. Ryan surveys
the scene and tells us he’s impressed with Derek’s plan of befriending all the people Austin hates. Finally, it’s showtime, which is signaled by Rodiney shouting, “There’s come the bitch!”

As Derek’s glittery, Chernobyl-hued body gyrates on stage in sequined short-shorts, he tells us in voiceover,  “Tonight is a turning point in my life.” Gay living rooms all over America spontaneously erupt into derisive laughter. After the “show,” Derek comes out to hug all his friends castmates, leaving glittery orange streaks all over the front of them. Now that Derek has such a major, life-changing accomplishment under his belt, he informs us that it’s time to meet with Austin because “he needs to know this friendship is over.” Wasn’t blocking his calls, meeting with all his mortal enemies, and having all your mutual friends inform him that the friendship was over enough? Don’t be silly. These things must be handled face-to-face, in an empty bar.  “I need closure,” he sniffs, in his tiny little shorts.

The big day arrives and all the bars in Manhattan clear the decks, hoping against hope that these two scions of New York Society will choose their bar to stage their bitchfight. Hahah. No. Some bar who paid for LOGO to shoot its sign for 5 seconds allows the girls to have their coffee klatsch inside. It’s disappointing. Derek’s voice quivers and his lower lip puffs out while he runs down the prepared list of Austin offenses. Austin blinks stupidly and offers half-assed apologies when it’s clear he has absolutely no idea what he’s apologizing for. Amazingly, Austin has an adult thought and wonders aloud if there’s anything he can say or do to help Derek get over it. Derek isn’t having any of this grownup shit and he sure as hell isn’t going to reconcile with Austin. He openly admits that he wouldn’t be able to face their friends if he forgave him because he just spent a week badmouthing him to all of them.

Derek, honey? Come on now. Everyone in your social group and the hundreds of millions of people* who watch your show all know you’re a two-faced bitch who moves people back and forth from two columns headed “Friends” and “Mortal Enemies.” Waving off his attempts at reconciliation, Derek blurts out, “I loved you, Austin!” and spins on his heels, heading out. Austin blinks and walks away in slow motion because this is some seriously dramatic shit, you guys.

*imaginary

[Screencaps: tomandlorenzo.com]

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