Wednesday, May 31, 2017

I Can't Believe We Still Have To Say This Shit

We want our movies to be larger than life. That’s the whole point of projecting them two-stories tall. But we don’t want our movies to be completely divorced from reality. Yes, we want heroes and monsters and aliens, oh my. But the same moviemakers who create whole other worlds and species too often have a failure of imagination when it comes to equal representation. Like, sure, semi trucks that turn into alien overlords are fine, but hold up you want there to be realistic women, too? Let’s not go crazy now. This is a long way around of saying what Jessica Chastain said as a jury member at Cannes was both great and exhausting. Do we really have to keep saying this out loud? When will it finally get through? While television has made significant gains when it comes to female representation (though, like almost everything else, it still has a way to go – especially behind the scenes) film lags stubbornly behind. Male-led franchises fill out cineplexes. Male-led prestige pieces vie for top awards. Women-led projects get called chick flicks. And so on, and so forth. It’s all, well, exhausting.

Anyway, tell them, Jessica (and Will Smith who chimes in on the extended clip about getting POC in there too). And on a related not, I don’t know about you guys, but I have my “Wonder Woman” tickets already.

p.s. It goes without saying that all this applies to LGBTQ representation as well. Always more, always better.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Tank Top KStew

You know, I think coming SNL out has done wonders for Kristen Stewart. The gradual reveal/realization that K-Stew was, indeed, family may not have been terribly surprising. But it’s a testament to the power that comes from being fully yourself. The energy, however small we believe it to be, that goes into hiding little parts of ourselves takes a terrible toll. But since making her “so gay”-ness official, Kristen seems different. Free. Granted, no less surly and over it all. But somehow happier about hating everything. And while I was certainly a fan of her James Dean phase, this Annie Lennox thing she’s got going on ain’t bad. Not bad at all.

p.s. Yes, I realize these both might technically stretch the definition of a tank top. But, as KStew would say *flips the bird*

p.p.s. Though is anyone else getting a strong “The Legend of Billie Jean” off this look? Like even down to the fingerless gloves? I swear, Helen Slater as Billie Jean and Mary Stuart Masterson as Watts in “Some Kind of Wonderful” could quite possibly be my root.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Always Ready, Always Hot

Happy Memorial Day, kittens. Here in the United States we spend the day not working/paying tribute to those who died serving in our armed forces. While I’m no fan of the military industrial complex, I fully appreciate those who serve and honor those who pay the ultimate price. So as a gay lady I thought, what better way to celebrate the day than to salute one of our favorite fictitious lesbian soldiers? So thank you for your imaginary service, Captain Tasha Williams. “The L Word” is such an interesting time capsule. And perhaps nowhere is that more evident than Tasha’s “Don’t’ Ask, Don’t Tell” storyline. Progress is hard earned and all too easily lost. Perhaps it’s a reminder of what we fight for in the first place.

And with that, a grateful nation takes a look back at Capt. Williams.

She could be serious.

So serious.

Even serious about her churros.

But then that smile would break out.

Or she’d get on her bike.

Or wear her dress uniform.

And, hello. Swoon.

I think this private speaks for us all.

Always ready, always hot.

Friday, May 26, 2017

My Weekend Crush

You guys, I feel like I’ve been sleeping on Sara Ramirez of late. Since the demise of Calzona and Callie’s subsequent exit, I just lost track. Sure, I knew she come out as bi. And, sure, I knew she started sporting an alternative lifestyle haircut. But I think I did not appreciate how truly, truly gay she has been lately. Like, hello. This is some “so gay” level gay. Like, damn, that is some butch hotness.

And to make everything just that much more delightful she appears in the new video for out queer recording star Mary Lambert (of “She Keeps Me Warm”/”Same Love” fame). But not only is “Know Your Name” a fun, poppy summer jam, it also features a wonderfully diverse group of women as nerdy gamers/actions heroes. And, best of all, it is a lady singing about her crush on another lady.

Come on now. I mean what more could you possibly want from a single song? Hot queer ladies! Video games! Sara Ramirez being a chick magnet! And, it has a beat and you can dance to it. Happy swoony weekend, all.

p.s. I hope I have conveyed how wondrously gay this video truly is. Because, yeah, it is that gay.

p.s.s. Point of order, you can absolutely be a “gay” woman and married to a man. It is in Sara’s case called being bisexual, which is what she has stated publicly as her sexual orientation. Being in a relationship with a man does not negate her queerness, nor would being in a relationship with a woman negate her attraction to men. I use “gay” here as an umbrella term, of course, to describe queer women on a spectrum from lesbian to bi to pan to omni - however one identifies that is not 100 percent straight. Period. All are welcome, all are so gay.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Iron & Sand

Dragons! Women in power! Women with swords! Women making out with other women! More freaking dragons! But enough about those fire-breathers. How about Yara Greyjoy and Ellaria Sand getting very friendly in the new “Game of Thrones” trailer. Look, I know this will all end terribly, as pretty much everything does for everyone on GoT, but at least we can enjoy this incredible hotness for however long it lasts. Dorne meet the Iron Islands.

p.s. I know I shipped Yara and Daenerys last season, and I still do. So, to be perfectly honest, I am for Yara making out with all the women in the Seven Kingdoms – period.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Once and Future Queen

I keep having to remind myself that she is gone. But then things like this gorgeous Vanity Fair bring me back to the harsh reality. It seems so cosmically cruel, really. Her loss continues to send mournful echoes across the galaxies. I have been lucky enough in my career to have been able to interview many of the women who were my childhood heroines. Megan Shirley/Anne of Green Gables. Linda Carter/Wonder Woman. But Carrie Fisher/Princess Leia, alas, she will forever be among the stars. Close enough to see burn brightly until the end of time, but never close enough to reach out and touch. I held off watching this video tribute to her for more than a month. Until just last night, honestly. Maybe I was hoping if I waited I could still have just a little longer with her. If you haven’t watched “Bright Lights,” the documentary about Carrie and her mother Debbie Reynolds, for the same reason I implore you to stop waiting. As melancholy as it is, and it’s a loss beyond words, the vitality of their lives should make us all feel a little better about the universe. We all start as stardust, after all. The lucky ones, they get to live among the stars shining benevolently down at us forever.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

To Sleep, Perchance to Dream

Oh, baby, do you know a mash up “Orange Is the New Black” and the “Black Mirror” “San Junipero” episode is worth? A lot, actually. And while I wouldn’t necessarily call it heaven, it is rather delightful. I love it when two great things lesbians love come together. Yet still, we’re left with that bittersweet longing. The joy/sorrow of seeing Poussey again. The joy/sorrow of reliving Poussey and Taystee’s friendship. The joy/sorrow of their relationship not being the same kind of the women of San Junipero. Well, at least for this dream I guess I’ll hold on to the joy part, and let the sorrow fade into the night.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Evil for Dummies

It is like they all read “How to Look Evil for Dummies.” Somehow, I thought supervillains would be harder to spot. Oh well, makes it easier for us, I guess. So that is something positive to start your week with.

Friday, May 19, 2017

My Weekend Real Anne

My love for Anne of Green Gables is eternal. The magic of those books found me even before the mid-80s miniseries. But it was through that series and endlessly irresistible charms of Megan Follows I feel in love for good. And, I say this every time, but I really did make my family vacation on Prince Edward Island one summer. I even have a little vial of P.E.I.’s famed red sand somewhere in a keepsake box.

But now with the released of this new Netflix “Anne With An E” series on Netflix (also, uh, what’s with the late name change wasn’t it just “Anne” before that), I just feel perplexed and very sad. I was willing to give this “grittier” reboot of L.M. Montgomery’s beloved heroine a chance. I really was. But then I read negative review after negative review. Though, to be honest, if Heather Anne Hogan says to skip it, I will always skip it. (In my world, the abomination known as “Skins Fire” does not exist).

Because, and I ask this quite sincerely, why? Why make a dark, gothic, gritty Anne of Green Gables? Why? Sure, realism is important and the world is admittedly awful. But we all know that already. To be honest, we have all the darkness we can deal with right now, thank you very much. What made Anne Shirley special wasn’t just how she overcame her life’s tragedies. It wasn’t because of her being beaten mercilessly. Or her dealing with PTSD. Or her being rescued from a would-be rapist in the woods. Sure, in the real world maybe she would have had to deal with these things. Sure, in the real world too many people have to deal with these things.

But Anne Shirley made us always believe in a better world. Some would call it innocent or naïve or fanciful. But it was her unrelenting optimism and determination and, yes, spirit that made us all think things could be better. We could be better. And people who make us feel like that, well, you love forever. So no thank you, Anne With An E, I already have a bosom friend. I’ll keep my Anne of Green Gables just as is. Happy weekend, all.

p.s. I know the new Anne is apparently canonically gay (or at least professes her love for Diane in a gay way), but you know what, we all knew that already.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The Days of Our Scandals

You know, if our entire democracy wasn’t hanging in the balance, this week’s news cycle would be amazing to just sit back and observe because…THIS SHIT IS BANANAS. Like you can’t look away from the new for 15 minutes without something major dropping. And not kinda major. Like Jesusfuckwhattheholyhellishappening major.

I mean, we thought it was big news a week ago when Trump fired Comey. And it was.

But this week alone we’ve learned:

Monday: Trump blabbed highly classified intel to Russia.
Tuesday: Trump pressured Comey to drop the Flynn investigation.
Wednesday: Trump is now facing a special counsel who is taking over the Russia investigation.
And that’s not even mentioning Wednesday’s other minor earthquakes like the House GOP leadership flat-out saying/”joking” that “Putin pays Trump” last year. Or Mike Flynn telling the Trump transition team almost a month before inauguration and his subsequent appointment to national security advisor that he was under investigation by the feds. Or Mike Flynn in his role as national security advisor block a military operation Turkey was opposed to, all while he was being paid $500,000 by – you guessed it – Turkey.

Oh, and we have’t even touched on the narcissist-in-chief as usual dumbass shit Trump said in a US Coast Guard commencement address: “No politician in history — and I say this with great surety — has been treated worse or more unfairly.” Yeah, dude, assassinated presidents Lincoln, Garfield, McKinley and Kennedy would like to object to that posthumously.

Like, this whole week is that classic “30 Rock” Liz Lemon and Jack Donaghy joke about a tough week. America, it’s Wednesday.

As I write this I have no idea what fresh hell Thursday will bring. Maybe Trump will pull off his doughy orange face and it will be revealed he was Putin all along. Nothing would surprise me. Oh, wait, if the GOP found it moral compass and put country over party. That would surprise the fuck out of me.

Anyway. All this is a roundabout way of saying each day in the Trump administration has been three months. So to look back at these outtakes of Melissa McCarthy performing on Saturday Night Live over the weekend seems like it happened, what, a year ago. I will always love Melissa’s Spicey (though I wish they hadn’t gone for the easy two dudes kissing, ewww, joke – be better). So, that is one good thing this infernal administration has brought us. Though, to be honest, I would trade four years of Melissa’s Spicey for four of Kate McKinnon’s Hillary in a heartbeat.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Just a Lie

Who would have ever guessed the guy who used to host a show with a segment called “Girls on Trampolines” would become a hero of the resistance? First, his emotional TrumpCare rebuke. And now, this. “The Man Show” was and still is utter garbage. But, keep on earning your respect back swipe by swipe at our Mango Mussolini. But, seriously, can we impeach him yet? How about now? Can we now?

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Nothing Matters

Look, if blurting out highly classified intel while bragging to the Russians won’t get this utterly unqualified egomaniacal creamsicle impeached, I don’t know what will. Maybe if he personally came every one of his voters’ homes and killed their grandmas and then set fire to their house? No? Nothing matters. Absolutely nothing matters anymore.

Monday, May 15, 2017

That's Our Girl

Here is just 3 minutes and 19 seconds of Kate McKinnon dancing to start off your week. You’re welcome.

Friday, May 12, 2017

My Weekend Crush

I’m not a religious person. I don’t belong to any church. And I don’t pray. But I do, on occasions, understand the inclination. Sometimes, when I’m listening to a beautiful song or reading a glorious turn-of-phrase or looking at an exquisite piece of art, I feel moved by the mysterious. It’s not that I believe there is an invisible, all-knowing divine being guiding us – or anything remotely like that. But, on our best days, it feels like perhaps we humans do share some sort of unseen connection. Granted, the tiny warlike selfish side of us far too often cancels that out. We can be such petty, petty beasts. But it’s nice to remember that the universe is vast and unknowable, and that’s all right. At a time like this – when so many are hurt and angry and scared and worried that the fundamental institutions and principals this country has come to stand for are in jeopardy – it never hurts to send a little song or beauty or the thing atheists like me does that isn’t praying but hopefully has the same effect out into the universe. So, with that, please enjoy the sublime Brandi Carlile with an assist from the late, great Leonard Cohen. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Orange Is the New Solidarity

I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again, I’m not sure I’m ready for the new season of “Orange Is the New Black.” But after seeing the official trailer I feel, somehow, relieved. Yes, things ended horribly. No, I’ll never get over it. But, yes, I like the idea of the ladies coming together for a common cause. Yes, I like the idea of solidarity. And, yes, I love how OITNB continues to be one of televisions greatest Trojan Horses for inclusive storytelling. Create a show ostensibly about a white female lead, but then flood the narrative with stories about women of color and queer women instead. More of that show, always more of that. Who is in?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Could Have Been

Just a reminder, it didn’t have to be like this. It didn’t have to be this constant, overwhelming feeling of dread, hopelessness, incredulity and rage. We could have elected Hillary Clinton president instead. But, you know, her emails, blah blah, Wall Street, blah blah, her voice, blan blah, her smile, blah blah, her lack of smile, blah blah, her being a woman. So here we are. Here we fucking are. Hey, America, how about next time you just hire the smart, hard-working, infinitely qualified (and, yes, flawed because no one can ever describe Hillary - or any woman for that matter - without having to add the word "flawed") woman instead.

Tuesday, May 09, 2017

Tank Top Tuesday

Sometimes, many times, all the time, I get nostalgic for the simpler times when all it took to make me happy was a woman in a white tank top. All the horrible in the world seems so close to the surface now. But, you know what, they make take away our health care, but they’ll never take our joy at a lady in white tank top. Not now, not ever. I mean, just look at Janelle. Look at her. Yeah, I feel better already. Enjoy.

Constance Wu

Jessica Huang continues to be one of the best characters on television. Period. (But real period, not like Sean Spicer period.)

Ksenia Solo

I miss Kenzi and Hot Pants and Bo-Bo, oh my.

Jessie Graff

If I was going to start a real-life superhero lady squad I would put Sally Yates and Jessie Graff on my starting lineup.

Chrissy Teigen

My love for her ages like fine wine. It gets richer, deeper, and still gets you drunk.

Monday, May 08, 2017

Amazonian Hopes

Fine, I’m pretty excited for this movie and if it lets me down I will spend the rest of my days searching for the island of Themyscira so I can convince its Amazonian inhabitants to wreak havoc on its creators for the severe injustice of it all. So, you know, let’s hope it is good.

Friday, May 05, 2017

My Weekend Human Kindness

We are capable of so many amazing, beautiful, gentle, kind, good things – us humans. If we only try, we can do so much good. But that’s the thing. We have to try to do good. It seems good is not our automatic default, as a species. Instead self interest, self glorification, self indulgence tends to be our default. Me, not you. Me.

Yesterday’s monstrous vote to repeal Obamacare orchestrated by Republicans in the House of Representatives was a perfect example of that. The GOP rushed through a bill that nobody seems to much like let alone know what it does (the Republicans didn’t wait for the report from the Congressional Budget Office, hold any public hearings, conduct a single independent study, post the bill for public consumption for a full 24 hours or – as some have admitted – even bother to read the damn thing) before voting it in 217 to 213. It should also be noted, that not one single Democrat voted for this horrible bill. Not one. So, you know, remind me again how there are no differences between the parties.

The CBO analysis of the last version of the GOP’s plan estimates some 24 million Americans would lose their health care. And that was before they modified it to make it more appetizing to the most rabidly conservative wing of the party. What just passed essentially eliminates coverage for pre-existing conditions. Sure they tried to be cute with the language by saying insurers can’t boot you for having a pre-existing condition. But then they took away the key part of Obamacare’s protections, namely that they also couldn’t charge you more. Now insurers will be free to charge you much, much, much more and therefore make healthcare unattainable for people again. So, the end result? People with pre-existing conditions can’t get healthcare – just like before. This bill will kill people. Period.

And let’s talk about what those pre-existing conditions, shall we? They can include: having a heavy period, pregnancy, C-sections, postpartum depression, domestic abuse and sexual assault. You know, basically being a woman. I would also like to note that somehow erectile dysfunction is missing from the list of pre-existing conditions. Cool, dudes. Thanks for looking out.

And we haven’t even touched the severe cuts it makes to Medicaid and defunding of Planned Parenthood yet. Because, sure, why not make everything just that much more awful – right, fellas? Oh, and did I mention it makes deep cuts to special education and also could lift the lifetime cap ban on even people with private insurance through their employer? Because, naturally, it also does that. Shit, at this point it seems like laughter might be people’s only health care option. Shit, wait, that’s illegal, too.

This obscene act of unnecessary cruelty was hurried through to give Trump a “win” and erase their bruised white male egos inflicted by one of President Barack Obama’s greatest legislative accomplishments. They held a party in the Rose Garden with Trump crowing with glee, and I quote: “Hey, I’m president! I’m president! Can you believe it?” Fuck, no, I cannot believe it. And I never will.

Of course, their little party kind of ignored the fact that their work is only half done. Quick civics lessons for all those smug GOP House members glad-handing each other yesterday: Bills need to be passed by the House AND the Senate before being signed by a president and becoming law. And the Senate, well, it might not be as easy. In the House the GOP has a 45-seat advantage over Democrats, and they could still only pass this thing by two votes. In the Senate the GOP only has a four-seat advantage (52-48). Four seats. So this GOP self-congratulation party is like tearing down the goalpost at halftime. Perhaps Trump & Company need to watch to “I’m Just a Bill” again to understand how our government works a little better.

Of course, I put nothing past the GOP at this point. They control the House, Senate and Presidency so if they have the will they can pretty much pass anything at any time. Yet the sheer villainy of passing a bill that – whatever the final score – will absolutely hurt poor people, hurt people with pre-existing conditions, hurt women, hurt the elderly all in an effort to ram through a massive tax cuts for millionaires is still somehow stunning. Make no mistake, this thing is evil.

And yet, once again, it doesn’t have to be. Human kindness is, at its core, about caring for each other. And there is no better example of this than caring for one each other when we are sick. It always baffles me when people say they don’t want to have to pay for someone else’s ill wife or dying child. Why the fuck not? Is there a better way to spend one’s money than saving a life? I can’t really think of one, can you?

Government, at its core, should also be about caring for each other. We pay taxes for the greater good – roads, schools, emergency response, national security, Social Security and so on. There will always be people who need help, who need a hand. As a society we can either extend that hand or yank it away. This bill yanks it away only to give the richest among us an unnecessary pat on the back.

So what can we do at this point? When I – like I imagine so many of you – feel small and tired and angry and scared? Take a breath. Take care of yourself. Be good to yourself. And then fight like hell to flip the House in 2018. Vote out every Republican who voted yes. Donate to causes that will help Democrats win.

When I first made this video six years ago, I had no idea how many times I’d need to post it. But I do. I like to go back to it now and again to remind myself of the beauty we can create. The good we can do if, again, only we try. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 04, 2017

The Anti-Trump

I can’t decide if I feel soothed or unnerved by the fact that, some 25 years ago, “The Golden Girls” knew exactly what was in Donald Trump’s black, black soul. And, boy, were they not afraid to tell it like it was (and, sadly, still very much is). The thing is, pop culture is littered with references to Donald’s unsavoriness over the past four decades. In this case it is less art imitating life as life being so obvious that art cannot ignore its ugliness. But then, true artists are always gonna look down on a lowly reality TV star. As it should be.

So today, when Trump is said to be signing a so-called “religious liberty” executive order (which we all know is just about the freedom to discriminate against us queer folk and anyone else they please and/or a way to erode the separation of church and state), please allow Dorothy Zbornak to remind us all how truly, truly terrible this man really is.

p.s. And don’t think I’ve forgotten about this new, horrendous TrumpCare bill to be voted on today. Republicans, pro-life for everyone except those already living.
p.p.s. If your representative is on this list, please call (202) 224-3121 and tell them to vote NO immediately.

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

A Lifetime of Firsts

It’s sort of strange that a superhero show is giving us one of our most sustained and significant gay lady relationships on television right now. It’s almost like it takes a superhuman feat to get lady-loving ladies to be taken serious or something. And this week’s show was a lovely homage to Alex Danvers and Maggie Sawyer’s relationship, and all the Sanvers shippers out there (you had your go last week, SuperCorpers). Sometimes, it’s just nice to get caught up in the romance of two women who are deeply in love. And, you know, it helps that they’re both totally badass and Danvers has a mean right hook.

Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Stars, They're Fangirls Like Us

Sarah Paulson's reaction to seeing Madonna at the Met Gala last night is every gay ladies’ reaction to seeing Sarah Paulson – anywhere. Look, watching a normal person fangirl is fun on its own. But watching a person you fangirl over fangirl over someone else you’d also fangirl over? That’s like gay lady inception or something.

Also, please enjoy as Sarah continues her post-jaw drop fangirling by grabbing onto Madonna’s shawl and playing with it. Stars, they’re just as big a star-struck geeks as us.

Monday, May 01, 2017

Unbreak's Over

I am back! And Kimmy is back! Coincidence? Yeah, I mean, definitely. But I hope I can approach my post-vacation return to work with the same wide-eyed enthusiasm as Kimmy approaches everything – even though there’s no recess. Seriously, why is there no recess? Also, how can I get Tilda airbrushed onto my car? Asking for a friend.