The A List: Tug, Fluff, Take the Piss

Posted on August 02, 2011

Oh my goodness, kittens! So much not-important stuff sort of happened this episode! Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Derek and Austin meet for lunch. Actually, that’s not quite true. Derek and Austin sit at a table outside a restaurant, order absolutely nothing, and talk about themselves. This entire show can be summed up thusly: “Vapid NYC gay famewhores sit in empty restaurants, never eat, and talk incessantly about themselves and each other.” That should really be the description of every single episode, but then people might figure out the show’s paper-thin premise and not watch again, so we can’t have that.

Austin’s upcoming shoot for Playgirl comes up and Derek tries to delicately inform the outrageously obese Austin that the public will collectively vomit if they’re exposed to his cellulite-ridden body. Austin, who, like the very best reality show participants, has absolutely no capacity to self-assess, says he’s trying to present an image of a gay man who’s not ripped and full of muscles. Derek congratulates him on reaching his goal. Then they briefly talk about Derek’s boyfriend, who remains unseen and un-named. We have a feeling this boyfriend will be moving to Canada before sex with Derek or a chance to be on camera presents itself. Austin is happy that Derek has someone, because “for the last nine months, it’s been me,” apparently forgetting that in the previous episode they greeted each other as if they hadn’t seen each other in months. Austin can’t keep up with the script changes, it seems. After discussing each other, they turn to discussing Nyasha and manage to completely puncture the old stereotype that gay men always make the best friends for women. Derek: “She’s a broke-down, disgusting, angry pig bitch.”  We realize it will be painful for you to do so, but keep this scene in your head because we’re getting back to it later.

Cut to Ryan’s apartment. The Grande Lady is having the aforementioned Nyasha over for tea and spends a moment pinching her cheeks and smoothing out her skirt, before checking the watercress sandwiches for perfection and spit-polishing the loving cup on the mantel. Nyasha stumbles in, all wig, heels, and Lee Press-On nails, and blurts out “Is everything, like, upscale with you?” Because THAT is exactly how the creme de la creme of Manhattan society acts, darlings. One immediately brings up the topic of wealth and then hammers that topic into submission. Pure class. Nyasha informs us that “I immediately gravitated towards his energy,” which seems to be her way of saying “I can smell money, and this prissy little white boy has got it going ON.” After discussing Ryan’s overwhelming affluence, the topic moves briefly to Nyasha’s “recording career,” before returning to the only topic any of these people have to talk about: each other. The epic-in-the-eyes-of-its-participants bar fight once again comes up and Nyasha says with a straight face, “Honestly, I don’t get angry like that.” It sure is a puzzle why you would flip out so spectacularly then, girl. What variable was in place that caused you to act like a feral child at a cocktail party? Could it have been… the presence of cameras documenting your every move? Later, she sums up Austin’s behavior with, “It brought me back to a place of anger,” which is essentially a meaningless word salad, something that almost everyone on this show is really good at. In fact, meaningless strings of words are just about the only thing anyone in this cast can manage. It really says something that the ESL who sounds like he has marbles in his mouth and requires extensive subtitling, is no less articulate than anyone else in the cast.

Austin and his husband go to the gym. Husband tells him his body is disgusting and that he needs to do cardio. Austin is offended that husband doesn’t think he’s ready for a naked shoot and says the word “artistic” about 30 times in 2 minutes, adding that, “I’m gonna fluff a little bit,” which is a very artistic thing to say.

Cut to: Nyasha and Ryan, auditioning dancers. Nyasha makes all the girls fight each other to the death until there are two backup dancers left, covered in blood and sweat and howling their triumph to the drop ceiling and flourescent lights above them. Ryan flicks open his fan and huffs that he could never work for Nyasha. The two remaining dancers stand there on a pile of dead dancer bodies, sweating and trying to catch their breath, not quite believing that they went through all this shit just so they could dance on a Pride float.

Austin and Reichen meet in the park to find blowjobs. They walk towards each other, stop, talk about each other, hug, turn around and walk away. The staging on this show could use a little work. “I don’t like being around people I don’t get along with” says Reichen to the person who co-stars with him on a reality show. Austin says things are “not perfect” between him and his husband. Reichen asks if they’re monogomous and then gives the most hilariously awkward and bad “come hither” look. You might have misread it because he looked a little like he was having a stroke, but make no mistake, this is the storyline: Reichen is a low down dirty dog who can’t go 30 seconds without having his looks validated and Austin is self-absorbed, obssessed with Reichen, and is having marital problems. Will one of them trip and fall and accidentally insert his penis into the other one? Stay tuned!

Reichen stops wiggling his eyebrows at Austin and gets serious for a moment. “You really push the limits of our friendship when you leave me drunken phone messages calling me a filthy whore and making fun of my little dick. “So let’s hang out during the day when I’m not drinking,” suggests Austin.”Okay,” says Reichen. They hug and walk away.

Once again, we are forced to point out that everyone on this show acts in a way counter to every other human being we’ve ever met.

Mike and Ryan are looking at clothes and Ryan says they’re “working on the baby” and alludes to “surrogacy problems,” which is code for, “I just can’t work up the jizz knowing it’s going inside a lady body.” Ryan then asks Mike for advice because after his Today Show episode, people advised him he was too gay and he needed to butch it up. Two things about that:

1) The media LOVES a flamboyant queen. If anything, it’s the UNflamboyant ones who are told to gay it up. This story is wholly unbelievable.

2) Starving children everywhere silently weep for Ryan and his  soul-crushing problems.

Later, at Ryan’s salon, the stress of being Ryan finally gets to him.  “Did you put my Today Show clip on Facebook yet?” he hisses at TJ; a sentence that really should make anyone pause and assess their life. TJ stomps out and Ryan immediately turns to another employee and openly considers firing TJ, which is exactly what business owners should do: talk about potential firings with other employees. Highly professional.

Austin meets with the Playgirl Marketing Director, who leers, and runs his tongue over his lips, fondles himself and does everything but twirl a mustache to show how lecherous he is.  “So, you want to be in the magazine?” he asks Austin, mentioning the pictures he “sent in.” Austin told Derek last episode that Playgirl wanted him to do the cover. Now we find out that he’s the one begging Playgirl for a chance to show his ass.  The Playgirl guy manages to simultaneously leer at Austin while at the same time telling him he’s a big flabby mess. “I know!” he pipes up. “Let’s get you out of your clothes RIGHT NOW!” Austin acts put out but he’s naked within 3 minutes. “This is not what I had in mind at all,” he says unconvincingly as he tugs on his penis to make it bigger, while arching his back to make his ass rounder. Playgirl guy sends a little leering munchkin to give Austin a little fluffing. KNOWING THAT THERE ARE CAMERAS RECORDING THE WHOLE SCENE, the little whore does so, and comes out from behind the screen wiping his mouth off. Pure unadulterated class all the way. After more tugging and fluffing, the impromptu photo shoot comes to an end, and Playgirl guy informs Austin he’s too fat, which apparently required full nudity and a partial blow job before they could come to that conclusion.

Everyone but Austin shows up to Rodiney’s little Austin-themed rap session. Rodiney honks at the camera about how he has to get everyone together to let them know that he hates Austin, because no one knew that and because such announcements should be made to the group as a whole, as if he was announcing his candidacy or something. Rodiney says he’s ready to go to the police because “this guy put my life in dangers” and that once he does that,  “They gonna put something in his leg and be far away from Rodiney.” Rodiney’s … special, isn’t he? A special little way of looking at the world. “I work with my face!” he blurts out. No one is willing to tell him that he doesn’t actually work that much and when he does, it ain’t his face they’re looking at.  Nyasha wants to know which friends Derek is going to stay with at a potential party that they’re all attending. This is the kind of conversation we all had in 5th grade and which most of us got out of our systems before puberty ended. Everyone agrees that when he’s not drunk, Austin’s fine. No one suggests that anyone talk to him about his clear drinking problem because it’s much more fun and interesting to sit around talking about it. Derek is surprised that he is the only one who defended Austin, who has ruined every single social event he has ever attended. Rodiney honks a lot of words that the subtitles indicate are English. “HE getta so angry!” “But I decide to don’t do the order of protect right now.” How is his English getting worse the longer he’s in this country? He’s like Ricky Ricardo if Desi Arnaz had a thing for strapping blonde attention whores and did over a thousand crunches a day.

Ryan and TJ meet at Ryan’s place.  Before TJ has a sip of his coffee, Ryan has batted his freshly curled eyelashes and fired him. They inexplicably hug.

Derek and Austin are in an empty store when Derek decides it’s time to inform Austin of some unpleasant truths. “Let’s go upstairs and have a … TEA” suggests Derek, cleverly leaving out the words “long,” “island,” and “iced.” As they sip their teas with pinkies extended, Derek fills Austin in on the meeting of the Junior League that he missed. Upon hearing that everyone in his social group got together to discuss his outrageously bad behavior, Austin reflects quietly about just what he’s done to himself.

HAHAHAHAHA! PSYCH! No he didn’t! Instead, he acted furious that people were talking about him behind his back, conveniently ignoring that THIS IS THEIR ENTIRE LIVES. They meet up somewhere empty in Manhattan and talk about whoever isn’t there with them. THAT’S THE WHOLE SHOW, AUSTIN.  Although we will, bitterly, give Austin some credit for pointing out that Ryan is quite the little two-faced doyenne. It’s about time SOMEONE mentioned that. Derek, who in an earlier scene with Austin, called Nyasha a “broke down angry pig bitch” is equally appalled that people were speaking about Austin behind his back. When Derek reveals that Rodiney is considering filing a restraining order against him, Austin defends himself with: “Nobody is in any danger around me. Except Rodiney,” apparently not realizing how the words coming out of his mouth sound. Derek mentions that Rodiney is scared of him. “He should be,” counters Austin.

He doesn’t really get this whole “defending himself” thing, does he?

As if to reiterate that point, we cut to the next scene, where Austin (we will pay LOGO five thousand dollars to have an entirely Austin-free episode just so we don’t have to type that name 600 times on Tuesday mornings. It’s gotten to the point where the autocorrect recognizes “AUS” and comes back with “tin is a narcissistic asshole.”) has decided, after several days have passed, to tell his doormat husband that his “meeting” with Playgirl was a lot more naked and moist than he had originally implied. Doormat husband finds his balls suddenly and is the very first person to ever appear on this show who acts remotely like a human being would act. He gets angry and, unlike everyone else in the cast, actually confronts the person he’s angry with AND doesn’t just shrug and hug the insanely anti-social behavior away.

ARE YOU TAKING THE PISS, AUS?” should really be on a t-shirt, LOGO. Make that happen.

Once again, Austin demonstrates his total inability to defend his behavior. “Do you think I would really do that?” he asks his husband, of the behavior he JUST ADMITTED DOING. When that tack doesn’t work, he heads for the reality show staple: offense. Hilariously, Austin tries to claim that the husband is being disrespectful to him, to which the husband replies “You’re just throwing bullshit at my face,” and storms out. We LIKE this guy, suddenly! We might even make the attempt to remember his name now!

Oh, why bother? He’ll be gone soon and then the story will be (once again) “Will Austin and Reichen fuck?”

But really, LOGO; consider that t-shirt. Also one with the phrase “You’re basically throwing bullshit at my face, Austin.”

[Screencaps: tomandlorenzo.com]

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