Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Anne of Gentleman Gables

OK, fine, it’s Trailer Week, plus two. I promise this is the last one. Probably. Remember way, way back in 2017 when it was reported that HBO was working on a historical drama based on the real life of 19th Century Englishwoman, landowner, diarist and incredibly gay lady Anne Lister? Now, you may recall it was being created and written by Sally Wainwright of “Last Tango in Halifax” and “Happy Valley” fame? And you may recall I was curious how it would stand up against the little-seen BBC series from 2010 on the same topic, “The Secret Diaries of Anne Lister?”

Well, if you answered yes to any or all of those questions, here is your reward. The series, now called “Gentleman Jack,” stars Suranne Jones as Anne/Gentleman Jack. You may recognize Suranne from the wildly addicting “Scott & Bailey” (or as I like to call it, smart, British Rizzoli & Isles) , which is also by Sally Wainwright.

In short, I’m very excited this is will all be happening with these people on my TV screen really soon.

Monday, March 18, 2019

I Love You, Baby

Surpsise! It’s trailer week, plus one day. Because I absolutely cannot wait for this love story for the ages to return. I love (love love) how much the show is leaning into the obsession between Eve and Villanelle. Love can take many, many forms. In this case, it’s a mix of fear, admiration, curiosity and – let’s be honest – lust. I cannot quantify in words how much I am looking forward to the new season. The best I can do is kind of a primal squeal mixed with a guttural growl coupled with a lot of hand clapping and possibly jumping up and down.

p.s. More Villanelle in a suit and tie, please and thank you.

Friday, March 15, 2019

My Weekend Trailer

We conclude trailer week with something entirely unexpected. I’d never heard of “Booksmart” before it debuted this week at SXSW. It’s the story of two high school best friends vowing to have a little fun before they head off to college. It’s also the directorial debut of Olivia Wilde. Yes, that Olivia Wilde. And it stars actresses Kaitlyn Dever as Amy and Beanie Feldstein as Molly (you might remember her as the best friend in “Lady Bird”) as the aforementioned booksmart best friends. Amy, it appears, plays on Team Gay. And she’s gay enough to realize scissoring is not a thing. (Like, sure, you can do it – but there are so many better/easier/more satisfying ways to gay…) This film follows in the recent trend of young women claiming their sexuality and claiming their full agency. Movies like “Blockers” and shows like “Sex Education” have taken the raunchy teenage boy sex comedy genre and reframed it wonderful, empowering way. From the trailer, it looks like “Boosmart” fits delightfully in that new, refreshing tradition. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Gender Fuck Thursday: Trailer Edition

And the movie trailers just keep on coming. You might remember me talking about “Late Night,” the new Emma Thompson, Mindy Kaling, Nisha Ganatra project about a legendary female late-night TV host trying to save her career.

Now, I don’t see anything overly gay – except for Emma’s wardrobe which is just an astonishingly fun assortment of suits and blazers. But you may recall Nisha’s feature film debut was “Chutney Popcorn” where she cleverly cast Jill Hennessy as her girlfriend. So I’m going to credit her with all the delightful Gender Fuck Thursday wardrobe choices.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

None of Your Beeswax

Remember that slew of lesbian films I wrote about which I like to call The Carol Effect? Well, one of them, “Tell It To The Bees” has finally come out with a full trailer and not just a clip. It starts Anna Paquin as a new small town doctor and Holliday Grainger as a woman with a failing marriage and a tattle-tale son. You might also recognize the man who plays her husband as “that asshole Jay” from “Lip Service.” Don’t be gay or we’ll take your kid away stories are nothing new (cough, Carol, cough), but I hope there’s more honey than misery in this story. A lot more honey.

p.s. [SPOILER ALERT: I heard this movie changes the book’s happy ending and now I am less excited because come one, we need all of them we can get.]

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Walk On the Emily Side

In case you hadn’t caught on, it’s trailer week here on Surrenders. Now that the doldrums of bad movies the studios hid in January and February are finally over, some really interesting movies are coming out. And that include really interesting movies featuring queer women. I know, whoddathunkit?

First up is “Wild Nights With Emily,” featuring Molly Shannon as iconic poet Emily Dickinson. I wrote about this movie almost exactly one year ago, when it was at SXSW. And now it’s getting released and we can see what kind of quirky joy Molly, Emily and out writer-director Madeleine Olnek (maker of the best/strangest low-budget lesbian film of all time “Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same”) have come up with together.

The result looks fun, weird, kind of delightful and super-duper gay. Super-duper-duper-duper gay. Like, really gay. Enjoy!

Monday, March 11, 2019

Somemovie Like You

Well now, isn’t that fun. Like, really, really fun. Like more fun than a rom-com has looked in a long while. See what a difference a slightly different perspective and some underrepresented voices make. Plus, queer women of color, Gina Rodriguez and secret “Pitch Perfect” lesbian Brittany Snow. Yeah, like I was saying, fun.

Friday, March 08, 2019

My Weekend Crush

Here’s the thing. This picture is important. No, it’s not just Brie Larson’s rippling back muscles on full display. Or the dramatic, dare we say heroic sweep of her gown. Or even the three-story tall Captain Marvel stance emblazoned in front of her. It’s the combination of all three, plus the context that makes this photo important. This is the kind of photo that will make young girls, and older girls and women of any age, feel super. The pantheon of superheroes is for everyone, after all. And it’s high time more people felt represented in the in the fantasy of having super strength, super speed, super bravery and super heroics. More women, more people of color, more underrepresented groups. In this world of make believe, we should all feel included. We should all be heroes. Happy heroic weekend, all.

Thursday, March 07, 2019

Gender Fuck Thursday

I don’t pretend to know one single thing about fashion. Most days I’m content if my clothes aren’t too wrinkly and don’t smell. But I appreciate people with great fashion sense. And I do not poo-poo the whole industry out of hand – and not just because I live in fear of a withering Miranda Priestly-esque “You think this has nothing to do with you”-lecture. Yeah, a lot of this shit is ridiculous. But, again, it’s what we humans do because we don’t have enough hair protecting our bodies. We all wear clothes and like to look (relatively) nice. So let us all appreciate a fellow human being who knows fashion. Loves fashion. And looks damn good in fashion. And that person is Janelle Monae at Paris Fashion Week.

Also, Janelle and K-Stew sitting next to each other in the front row made me even gayer, but make it fashion.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Kate vs. Chairs

Here is Kate McKinnon proving once and for all that us queers are terrible at sitting in chairs. Need more proof? Here is photographic evidence, Exhibits A to G-A-Y.

Somehow still not convinced? Please enjoy Kate wriggling in her chair during an interview. I’ve watched it…many times. Yes, many – that’s the word for it.

In conclusion, gays can’t sit in chairs… Or is it we’re fucking geniuses at sitting in chairs and everyone else is doing it wrong? *Sits crossways on both legs with feet dangling off the ground horizontally while typing this* Geniuses it is.

Tuesday, March 05, 2019

Blair House

Selma Blair made her red carpet debut for the first time since being diagnosed with M.S. at the Oscars last week, and she flawless. No, wait, that’s a silly thing to say because we’re all flawed and weird and imperfect creatures. Instead she was amazing, which we can do and regularly do – or at least the best of us do. It’s also amazing to hear her talk about her life and diagnosis with M.S. on “Good Morning America.”

Now, you may ask why we should care about Selma Blair as queer women. But besides her iconic snogging with Sarah Michelle Gellar in “Cruel Intentions,” Selma is a reminder of how vigilant women need to be about their health. Because if a woman as famous as Selma can be pish-poshed by doctors and misdiagnosed for years, well then we all can. And the other reason is because she can work that cane with a ball gown or a suit and tie. So, you know, throw a little Gender Fuck into this Thursday Tuesday for good measure. Like I was saying, amazing.

Monday, March 04, 2019

Drink To That

The love story between Edie Windsor and Thea Spyer is truly one for the ages. It’s definitely one for the history books. So who better to recount their monumental relationship than two drunk ladies? If you haven’t watched “Drunk History” before, you might be a little confused. But the concept is simple: someone gets really shit-faced while recounting an important and/or little-known part of history which is then reenacted, complete with slurry speech and occasional falling down, by a celebrity.

In the case of the late, great Edie and Thea, the story is told by actress and comic Alison Rich to actress and surprise nose-ring enthusiast Kirby Howell-Baptiste (who you may recognize from “Killing Eve” and “The Good Place” and the all-too-shirt “Downward Dog”). Alison Brie and Sugar Lyn Beard play Thea and Edie, respectively. And the whole thing is kind of lovely in that hazy, buzzed kind of way things are lovely when you’re on your third glass of wine. Enjoy, and bottoms up.

Friday, March 01, 2019

My Weekend Crazy

Yeah, I know, another ad. But this is an ad with a whole lot of crazy behind it. And, of course, I mean crazy in a good way. Look, brands aren’t our friends. But brands can, if they want, be more responsible stewards of cultural progress. Nike has with its support of Colin Kaepernick and Serena Williams and female athletes in general and many queer female athletes in particular proven that it isn’t afraid to wade into our national conversation and push it forward. Now redefining what it means when you call a female athlete, or any woman, crazy seems like a natural progression of that message. Besides being narrated by Serena (in an obvious response to the umpiring debacle of last year’s U.S. Open Final) the spot features out queer and/or gender nonconforming athletes like Megan Rapinoe, Castor Semenya, Sue Bird and Diana Taurasi. And, well, it’s just cool. No, make that crazy cool. Happy crazy weekend, all.

p.s. If you want to see more of the Nike’s “Dream Crazier” campaign, check out this featurette on 14-year-old Chantel Navarro, that happens to be edited by Heather Hogan’s partner Stacy.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Our Shit Show

Money, the bane of all human existence, is at it again. Money, that made up concept we give value and allow to rule our lives, is said to be the reason the new season of “Wynonna Earp” has been delayed. It’s also the reason we’re all been gearing up to #FightForWynonna on Twitter for more than a weeks now.

IDW Entertainment, the studio that produces “Wynonna Earp,” is apparently very short on cash. So short that the company has not started shooting the new season, which normally would have started shooting or December or January – at the latest. Instead we’re all kind of sitting on our hands while IDW figures out how to pay for the two new seasons it promised to deliver to Syfy.

It put out a statement that basically said we love this show, yadda-yadda-yadda, but we broke or something:

“IDW is committed to continuing to tell the Wynonna Earp story. Much like the fans, we are passionate about not only the series, but the comics, the characters and the overall message that the Wynonna Earp franchise carries. We are in the process of working out the details for how the Wynonna story will continue and will share new details very soon.”
Now, fighting for our weird, endearing little shit show is nothing new for fellow Earpers. But it’s particularly disheartening when a show with such a committed, passionate and vocal fanbase has to basically beg, year after year, for more. What companies prioritize financially isn’t solely based on ratings or merit, and we all know it.

The constant instability shows like “Wynonna Earp” and “One Day At a Time” find themselves in is a reminder that it’s always a fight for some shows to survive – no matter how beloved.

Both “Wynonna Earp” and “ODAAT” are great woman-made, woman-fronted shows that highlight underrepresented voices to appreciative and often marginalized communities. We deserve more of both. But we’ll have to wait to see if we get it.