Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day Music Monday

Here in the states, today is Memorial Day. It’s a day traditionally seen as the start of summer and a perfect time to engage in a little hot grill-on-grill action. And you can’t grill without a) beer and b) music. So kick back, crack open a cold one, tip your hat to those who have served, and enjoy this joyful noise. Good thing it’s a holiday, too. Since some of this noise is a tad NSFW.

La Roux, “I’m Not Your Toy”

Elly Jackson’s pompadour rivals Janelle Monáe in sheer architectural audacity. Also, how is she not gay?

Hunter Valentine, “The Stalker”

Now, on the other hand, Hunter Valentine lead singer Kiyomi McCloskey is gay. I think the term you’re searching for is lesbothrob.

Goldfrapp, “Alive”

Let’s get physical, with vampires and Satanists. Naturally.

Metric, “Stadium Love”

So this video is not approved by PETA. I could do without the gruesome slo-mo National Geographic footage. But the song is good. Basically look away whenever Emily Haines isn’t on screen.

Rihanna, “Te Amo”

Rihanna frolics with Laeticia Casta in a Parisian castle. Or, as I call it, just another Monday.

Complicated Universal Cum, “I Can’t Hardly Wait”

Girls kissing. Yes, it’s that simple.

Happy Memorial Day, all.

Friday, May 28, 2010

My Weekend Crush

I liked this show, a lot. People who thought “Sex and the City” was just about superficial women who slept around missed the point. It was, quite simply, about women who were friend. Not rivals. Not props. Not girlfriends. Friends, with each other – always. Boyfriends (heck even a girlfriend) came and went. Styles changed. Cocktails were finished. But through it all they were friends. They helped each other navigate the city, that jungle of concrete, dreams, pain and joy. They weren’t perfect. Sometimes they were real, sometimes they were surreal. They represented a slice of life some aspire to, others care little for and most will never have. But they had something almost all of us want – friend who are our family. And for six seasons that is what we got. Now I watched the first film, with a group of female friends, and had fun. And I’ll watch the second film, though with a tremendous amount of trepidation given its terrible reviews. Yet these women, for all their flaws, still feel like friends. I hope that never changes. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Gender Fuck Thursday

Beyoncé may have emphatically sung about going “to the left, to the left,” but today is all about the right. No, not the state of being correct or, banish the thought, the political affiliation. I’m talking about the actual physical direction. As in turn to your right. Your other right, Brittany. Hey, not all the themes are deep. But they are hot. So without further ado, all righty then.

Piper Perabo
Monica Bellucci
Dita Von Teese
Janelle Monáe
Tilda Swinton
Kelly Clarkson
Katharine Hepburn
Juliette LewisWell, there’s always a contrarian.

p.s. Hey, tumblesbians. I’m always extremely, extremely flattered when you post my pictures. But, if possible, please provide a link back. Consider it old-school reblogging. In keeping with today’s theme, it’s just the right thing to do. Merci buckets.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Simply the best

If Tina Fey wins an award, I’m gonna write about it. If Tina Fey wins an award that names her the funniest person in the country, I’m gonna crow about it. These, by the way, are not hypotheticals. They are, thanks to the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, just fact. Yesterday it was announced that Tina will be the 13th recipient of the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. It will make her only the third women and youngest person to be given the country’s top humor honor.

Over at AfterEllen today (what, you thought I’d only write about this once?), I count down 10 of my favorite Tina Fey moments of all time. But a few slipped through the cracks. So here are a few of my other favorite scenes from “30 Rock.” Much like potato chips and international adoptees in the Jolie-Pitt household, it’s impossible to have just one. So let’s all get business drunk and enjoy them together.

Night Cheese

How to Get Out of Jury Duty

I Want to Go to There


Little Lesbian

That entire episode was amazing, right down to its bi-curious shoes

Where’s My Sandwich?!

That entire episode was amazing, too, right down to her wolfing her special Teamsters sandwich in a single take.

The Best of Liz Lemon

In honor of Tina’s richly deserved award, I declare today We Are All Liz Lemon Day. Suck it, nerds.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tank Top Tuesday: Lost Edition

I never watched “Lost.” Not one episode. Not even five minutes. Never. But I still felt curious about the finale this weekend. As a person who prides herself on her pop culture prowess, I just had to know. How does it end? So I watched the last 15 minutes. Yes, yes – I know. You can’t just watch the last 15 minutes of any show and expect to understand. So, basically I had no idea what was going on. But from a lot of regular watchers’ initial reactions, I wasn’t the only one. [Spoilers Alert: If you haven’t watched the finale, SKIP TO THE PICTURES!] So, dude, how about that Sixth Sensing of the finale? We’re all seeing dead people. In church! And then there was a dog! I honestly don’t know what to make of it all, but I do know that I commend “Lost” for spinning a hell of a yarn that engrossed a hell of a lot of people for six seasons. Well, that and employing some gorgeous, gorgeous women and stranding them on a desert island with a wardrobe full of tank tops. So long, “Lost,” I hardly knew you.

Evangeline Lilly (Kate)Michelle Rodriguez (Ana Lucia)Maggie Grace (Shannon)Rebecca Mader (Charlotte)Yunjin Kim (Sun)Emilie de Ravin (Claire) Cynthia Watros (Libby)Elizabeth Mitchell (Juliet)She even looks good all dirty and bedraggled in her tank top.

So I guess the only question now is who is your favorite twosome?

Libby & Ana LuciaJuliet & Kate

What? I said I didn’t watch, not that I didn’t keep track of who was who and who looked particularly hot in a tank top.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The aLum Word

Now that the networks have unveiled their new seasons, it’s time to see how the ladies of the Chaikenverse (ugh, I already feel dirty and wrong about using that term) are faring. The verdict: Pretty well. In fact some of the L alumni have high-profile new projects ahead. And, for whatever reason, most of them have law enforcement bents. I guess six seasons of the crazy that Chaiken built will make any sane person run for a little law and order.

“Ride-Along” (Fox), Jennifer Beals

Let me sum up the “Ride-Along” trailer as simply as possible: Jennifer Beals. Cop Uniform. Chicago Streets. Tough talk. Handcuffed perp. Tank Top. I don’t really think the world needs another cop drama, but I do think the world needs to put Jennifer Beals in charge of Chicago.

“Chase”(NBC), Rose Rollins

Chase” seems little “In Palin Sight” mixed with “Justified” and sprinkled with a dusting of an Anna Torv-type in cowboy boots. Also, there was far too little of Rose in that trailer. Still, someone is looking very Tasha today. I’m just saying – she pings my gay character ’dar.

“Facing Kate” (USA), Sarah Shahi

No clips or promos of “Facing Kate” yet, just the tantalizing thought of Sarah headlining her own new USA series. She’ll play a former top litigator who becomes a legal mediator. So I think that means we can look forward to seeing Sarah in a series of nicely tailored suits. And, just in case you’ve forgotten what Sarah looks like, I’ve provided a helpful visual aid of her taken earlier this month. Yeah, you’re totally watching this series.

“The Gates” (ABC), Janina Gavankar

It’s “Desperate Housewives” meets “True Blood!” This summer series looks a little, um, dumb. But it does have Janina as what appears to be a security guard. So it at least gives us the opportunity to say one more, “Really, Papi?”

And that doesn’t even take into account the many actresses already working gainfully on existing shows. We’ve got Jane Lynch on “Glee,” Jessica Capshaw on “Grey’s Anatomy,” Lucy Lawless on “Spartacus: Blood and Sand” and Mia Kirshner on “The Vampire Diaries.” While we’re at it, we should pour a little out for our homie, Kate Moennig. “Three Rivers” is dead, but this summer you can watch CBS burn off its final five episodes starting June 5.

So, which L alum’s new show has you most excited? I’m going with Jennifer’s “Ride-Along” for now. But we haven’t seen Sarah in action yet. Oh, TV, I love it when you’re in the courting phase.


“Body of Proof” (ABC), Dana Delany

Dammit, I left out the fabulous Ms. Dana Delany and her new ABC show “Body of Proof.” (Hat tip to the always lovely Norma Desmond for the reminder!) Dana is back in scrubs, and joined by the also lovely Jeri Ryan – though sadly not in her skin-tight silver body suit from “Voyager.”

Friday, May 21, 2010

My Weekend Crush

So yesterday was one of those days. Work had me running around like that proverbial chicken with its equally proverbial (simmer down, PETA) head cut off. A rock flew up when the lawn guy was mowing and shattered the picture window in my living room. And my interpersonal relationships of almost all stripes were, to put it mildly, strained. You know, one of those days. So then, after a cocktail (or two, or three...) and an appropriate amount of time cursing the gods of fate, I decided to try a little music to soothe the savage beast that was my soul. But not just any music, new Janelle Monáe music.

If by chance you haven’t heard of Janelle Monáe, then it is my distinct privilege to introduce her to you. And if you have heard of her already, can I get an “Amen!” The magnificent Ms. Monáe released her major label debut, “The ArchAndroid,” this week. The sweepingly ambitious undertaking is a fusion of almost everything good – soul, funk, pop, jazz, big band, hip hop, science, fiction, fantasy, passion, love, beauty, joy. She is at once a studious throwback and yet entirely fresh. Her new album’s first single, “Tightrope,” is the very definition of infectious. And then there’s the video, where Janelle moves her feet in ways my feet only dream of moving in their best, wildest, craziest dreams. Add that all in with her look – that Dietrich-inspired tuxedo, that architecturally impossible pompadour, that impeccably audacious swagger – and you have a force so irresistible that no matter how bad your day was your soul will want to dance. So dance I did. Happy weekend, all.

p.s. In case you were wondering, the lady can kill it live, too.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

An expert at “putting things over on people”

OK, now I’m just bitter. I got some deadly dull Republican Congressman at my commencement and, so far, the class of 2010 has got to listen to Rachel Maddow and now Meryl Streep while sitting in billowy robes and mortar boards. I guess what I get for not attending a women’s college, or spending what amounts to the mortgage on a not-too-modest starter home for my college education. But, man, now I see how that $160,000 was worth it, because MERYL FUCKING STREEP. Deep envious sigh. So you have my undying jealously, Barnard College class of 2010. And now, because (like I said) I’m bitter, let me make you a little jealous. I don’t have any more college debt. Neener-neener.

But back to Meryl, how is it possible for her to be any cooler? Funny, warm, insightful, humble, heartfelt. I mean, who else could sum up a career as extraordinary as hers by saying:
“My success has depending wholly on my putting things over on people, so I’m not sure that parents think I’m that great a role model anyway. I am however an expert in pretending to be an expert in various areas. Just randomly, like everything else in this speech, I am an expert in kissing ... river rafting, miming the effects of radiation poisoning, knowing which shoes go with which bag, coffee plantationing, Polish, German, French, I-talian – that’s Iowa-talian, from “the Bridges of Madison Country,” bit of a brogue, bit of the Bronx – Aramaic, Yiddish, Irish clog dancing, cooking, singing, horse riding, knitting, playing the violin and simulating steamy sexual encounters. These are some of the areas in which I have pretended quite [successfully to be proficient in] ... as have many women here, I’m sure.”

Her speech, extoled the benefits of going to a women’s college, changes in men’s attitudes toward her (and all women), and women’s achievements. It’s actually quite astute. But then, it’s Meryl Streep. What else would you expect? Damn, here comes that jealousy again.

p.s. I know four whole videos seems long, but trust me, they will fly by and you will wish there were another four to watch. Deep envious sigh, again. Thanks to Anonymous 10:01 for the full video link, which is now posted. Those 28 minutes and 8 seconds will fly by, trust me.
p.p.s. Hat tip, The Linster & Anna for digging up this tremendous find in the first place.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Three makes a (very gay) trend

There is an unwritten tenet of journalism, universally regarded as scientific fact, that three makes a trend. Three occurrences of any natural, unnatural, man-made, woman-made, mammalian, reptilian, Brazilian, technological, evangelical or celestial events signal a shift in the universe and is therefore worth reporting on. Ask any journalist friend, she’ll tell you. So imagine my joy when the blessed triumvirate landed on my second favorite gay trend: An actress playing gay. (p.s. The first is, naturally, a celebrity actually coming out as gay.) In the past few weeks not one, not two but the magical THREE actresses have signed on to play gay. They are: Emily Deschanel, Linda Hamilton and Ellen Page. Friendly straight friends who visit this blog, that sound you hear is the slow, primal growl of gay ladies everywhere imagining the possibilities. So which role is the most promising? Let’s dissect.

Emily Deschanel

Emily will star in the new flick “The Perfect Family,” alongside Kathleen Turner, Jason Ritter, Michael McGrady and Richard Chamberlain. The story chronicles a devout Catholic mother and wife (played by Turner) who is trying to prove she has a “Perfect family” after she has been nominated for the church’s top award. According to Variety, Emily plays her daughter, a successful lawyer, closeted lesbian who is five months pregnant and “struggles when it comes time to telling her mother the truth.” Now, straight friends, that groan you hear is the sound of thousands of lesbians screaming “NOT ANOTHER PREGNANT LESBIAN STORYLINE!” Still, it’s the gorgeous Emily Deschanel playing a lesbian. So I will grumble yet still buy a ticket.

Linda Hamilton

Linda will join the cast of Showtime’s “Weeds” for a multi-episode stint this season as a lesbian. According to Entertainment Weekly, Linda will play “an eco-conscious marijuana grower who, along with her life partner Fiona, helps Nancy 's endeavors in Seattle take bloom.” Sarah Connor as a pothead lesbian? Yes, please – especially if she single-armedly cocks a shotgun at least once during her story arc. Hey, it could happen, just because you’re eco-friendly doesn’t mean you won’t defend your marijuana crop from marauding rivals by any means necessary. Now I’m just dying to know who plays her life partner Fiona. As long as Showtime seems to be in the business of wish fulfillment, how about Lena Headey? The two Sarah Connors together at last. Hey, don’t judge me – I’m a dreamer.

Ellen Page

The long (LONG) gestating feature film adaptation of the Oscar-winning documentary “Freeheld” is finally moving forward with Ellen Page starring in the true story of a terminally-ill lesbian's struggle to pass her pension benefits to her partner, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Ellen would play Stacie Andree, the partner to New Jersey police detective Laurel Hester who successfully sued the department to win survivor benefits after she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. This has the potential to be the biggest, most impactful of all the roles. It’s also getting a big boost from Oscar-nominated “Philadelphia” scribe Ron Nyswaner, who is writing the screenplay. Having such a talented young star agree to star in such a powerful, real-life story about the struggle gays and lesbians face to get equal rights is, in a word, HUGE. My hopes for this project could not be higher. And I’m already stocking up on Kleenex to hold back the inevitable waterworks this production will inspire.

So, which role has you most excited? And now that having A-List actresses play gay is a bona fide trend, who should be next? Hello, Tina Fey. She turned 40 yesterday. What better way to celebrate that milestone than by getting it on with the ladies? Like I said, I’m a dreamer.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Get smart and get smart fast

About 10 years ago, everyone went crazy for a commencement address supposedly given by Kurt Vonnegut about the importance of wearing sunscreen. It got emailed endless from friend to friend and even got turned into a hit song by Baz Luhrmann (yes, the “Moulin Rouge” guy). But, thing is, it wasn’t by Vonnegut at all. It was written by Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich. My point to this long intro, and I do have one, is that famous people and memorable commencement speeches do not always go hand in hand.

Which brings me to Professor Maddow. Rachel was the commencement speaker at Smith College (I know, I know, so gay) last weekend. There she delivered a very good, surprisingly pointed speech cautioning against our national obsession with fame and personal triumph. It’s quite a thing to say to the Facebook/Twitter/YouTube generation where even something as mundane as lunch is turned into a public spectacle. But it’s the message she chose to give and once completely consistent with her ideology that government, and people, can do great things to help society when we realize that “personal triumphs are overrated.” Instead we should shoot for “durable achievement to be proud of for life.” You know, stuff you’ll want to tell your grandkids.

Of course Maddow being Maddow, she weaved in some wonderfully wonky history tidbits including the story of wacky Temperance activist Carrie Nation, the AMC Gremlin and KFC Double Down. All in all, it was very memorable and more than that an important message. I don’t think anyone will turn it into a hit song, but I think I could happily hum “Do not for the fame, but for the glory – learn the difference.” to myself in the shower.

p.s. I have it on good authority that Rachel gave out many hugs and smiles afterward. Talk about your glory.

Monday, May 17, 2010

SGALGG: Blame it on the Riviera

Monday. Work. Blah. So instead, let’s transport – if only briefly – to the south of France. A place where the carpet is red and the stars are beautiful. Before I leave this mortal coil, I would like – if only just once – to attend the Cannes Film Festival. It seems rather glamorous and extravagant, to conditions I normally try to avoid at all cost. But there’s just something so lovely about the way the movie stars look bathed in the flash of bulbs in the French Riviera. It’s just irresistible. Also irresistible, a little Cannes SGALGG. Ladies. Together. Yum. Happy Monday, mon petit chou.

Eva Longoria & Aishwarya RaiSomehow these ladies became special friends at Cannes this year posing not once, but twice together. France is magic that way.

Naomi Watts & Lucy PunchThe two ladies co-star in Woody Allen’s latest, “You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger.” I’m not sure if I’ll see the movie, but I know I’d love to see Naomi plants one on Lucy, like she appears to be about to here.

Evangeline Lilly & Michelle YeohDon’t these two look like they’re going to run off together and elope? Hey, what can I say, I have a very active imagination.

Nicole Laliberte & Haley BennettI have no idea who these two women are, but no additional imagination is needed to turn this SGALGGy. None at all.

Cate BlanchettThis is an entirely different kind of SGALGG – Straight Gal Acting Like a Gorgeous Gal. Which, of course, Cate is.

Catherine DeneuveAnytime you can post a picture of Ms. Deneuve, you should. Period.

Friday, May 14, 2010

My Weekend Crush

In Hollywood , beauty has a way of making everything better. It’s not fair and it’s not right, but it’s a universal truth as matter of fact as gravity. So what one does with that beauty, that instead becomes the measure of a person. For a person like Lena Horne, her beauty was a tool – a way in and a way up. A way to open that door so countless others behind her could walk through behind her. As the first black star to be signed to a long-term contract with a major motion picture studio, Lena led the way. Her beauty made her acceptable to white audiences at a time when African Americans were not seen in mainstream entertainment, let alone allowed to sit at the same table. Still in the South the studios snipped her scenes from films. Yet there was just something about Lena – gorgeous, talented, undeniable. As she rose to fame in the 1940s she received that most insidious of compliments, that she was “a credit to her race.” That ugly qualifier, that sickly racism, that unbelievable burden that she endured took its toll. She famously called herself “a butterfly pinned to a pillar.” But she handled all of it through her six-decade career with uncommon grace and unimaginable strength. And for that reason, she will always be a thing of beauty to behold. May she rest in peace, eternally a credit to humanity. Happy weekend, all.