Friday, March 29, 2019

My Weekend Crush

Welcome to Lesbian Old Age Goals: Katharine Hepburn Edition. Live a good, full life and then retire to your country estate where you pick wildflowers, chop down trees, and generally look like a rumpled gentlewoman. Oh, and don’t give a fuck what anyone else thinks or says – or for their company, for that matter. Like I was saying, goals. Happy please go away weekend, all.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Brooklyn Kiss-Kiss

While we all continue to cross our very gay fingers crossed for “One Day at a Time” and “Wynonna Earp,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” has quietly been living its best second life over at NBC this season. And last week it took The Gay to Esposito levels. I love it when my fandom worlds collide – especially on the lips.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

End of a Broad Era

I didn’t seriously start watching “Broad City” until its third season, mostly because I’m a dummy who does dumb things like not start watching “Broad City” until its third season. But since then I’ve gone back and watched every episode and really enjoy the New York City, hipster, stoner, millennial, gross-out, feminist, zany, Jewish, female empowerment, BFF comedy. It’s like if “Girls” and Cheech and Chong had a really smart and funny and hijinks-prone bisexual baby.

The show is about to complete its fifth and final season (the finale airs Thursday *deep sobs between bong hits*). Now the show has never shied from showing the pansexual desires of Ilana, played by the wonderfully physical Ilana Glazer. But this season it explored Abbi’s bisexuality, which coincides with real-life actor Abbi Jacobson’s own sexuality.

And what’s most wonderful about it is it happens so organically there’s no time for Very Special Episode weirdness. There’s no “OMG, Am I Gay?” anguish. Just a natural attraction that follows through in a positively adult way. Also, did I mention Abbi gets it on with Clea DuVall? Yeah, someone fulfilled all her childhood “But I’m a Cheerleader” childhood fantasies.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Tales of the Tales

“Tales of the City” will live on (and on and on and on and on) as one of the seminal gay book and television series in American history. The original miniseries aired in 1993 on PBS and could be considered the first-ever gay soap opera. So the question is now how does a 90s soap grow into a relevant 2019 story? Well, Netflix is about to find out with its continuation of “Armistead Maupin’s Tales of The City.”

What I can remember from the original series and books is it was overwhelmingly white and male in regards to its gay storylines. But a new, out female showrunner in “Orange I sthe New Black” writer (and Samira Wiley’s wife) Lauren Morelli could help change that.

The new “Tales of the City” is a continuation, not a reboot, of the original. Considering the show has already had an original run, and two subsequent sequels (in 1998 and 2001, respectively). This return to the fictitious shenanigans of Barbary Lane comes 20 years after formerly naïve and wide-eyed Ohio girl Mary Ann (Laura Linney) left to pursue her best life. She returns to celebrate the 90th birthday of her old landlady Anna Madrigal (played by a returning Olympia Dukakis) and reunite with her daughter Shawna (played by Ellen Page who is new to the series, but not Netflix shows (see: The Umbrella Academy).

The new cast features “Looking” daddy Murray Bartlett as Mary Ann’s loveable BFF “Mouse” (who was played by two different actors in the original miniseries and its two previous sequels) and Zosia Mamet of “Girls” fame as someone who sits cross-legged on top of tables and stares deeply into Ellen Page’s eyes. Also she’s a documentary filmmaker who is obviously gonna hook up with our girl Shawna. The show also cast nonbinary actor Garcia who plays Anna’s trans/nonbinary caregiver. There is a lot more diverse LGBTQ talent in-front and behind the camera as well, which is a relief.

Here’s hoping for good things from this show that was one of the first to explain what our chosen families means in the LGBTQ community. Which is, you know, just about everything.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Waiting for Blanchett

Things you should know to start your week/new life as an existentialist performance artist. Cate Blanchett appeared in an episode of “Documentary Now.” Cate Blanchett parodies performance art (in particular Marina Abramovic) in an episode of “Documentary Now.” Cate Blanchett wears a bucket on her head while she parodies performance art (in particular Marina Abramovic) in an episode of “Documentary Now.” Cate Blanchett explores the banality of undeserving male “genius” set against the backdrop of underappreciate female labor while she wears a bucket on her head while she parodies performance art (in particular Marina Abramovic) in an episode of “Documentary Now.”

What? I knew you stopped reading after I said “Cate Blanchett” that first time and started daydreaming, so I just felt like pushing it.

Look, all of that is just a long way of saying Cate Blanchett is really, really good in her episode of “Documentary Now” and you should watch it. (Plus, she’s appears to be sporting her Hela hair from “Thor: Ragnarok,” if you’re into that sort of thing.)

Now, if you haven’t watched “Documentary Now,” it’s a hyper-realistic, hyper-meta satire of the documentary genre. This is its third season on IFC and they convinced Helen FUCKING Mirren to host. Yeah, like I said, you should watch.

p.s. You should also watch the behind-the-satire chat about the episode which starts with “How the hell did you get Cate Blanchett to be in this episode?”

p.p.s. She also wears this getup in it, so – you know, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Friday, March 22, 2019

My Weekend Crush

I finally got to see “Captain Marvel” this week and let me tell you it was worth the wait. It has everything I want from my superhero movies: action, adventure, punching old ladies in the face, and a deeply gay origin stories. Sorry, you didn’t think “Captain Marvel” was gay? Then please explain Carol Danvers.

One, her name is Carol. Harold, that’s the lesbianist of names.

Two, she wears grunge clothes and a ball cap for like half the movie.

Three, her unfazed expression through the other half of the movie.

Four, her mentor is silver fox Annette Benning.

Five, she has a cat/Flerken. (Also, I would take a bullet for that cat/Flerken)


Yes, yes, I know we’re supposed to read Maria Rambeau and her daughter Monica as just “very close friends.” But friends don’t stay in the same town, in the same house despite no longer having their cool fighter test pilot job being all single and forlorn for SIX FREAKIN’ YEARS. M’kay.

While I thought the plotting of the film was a little slow (it saved its most effective and impactful narrative points to the very end – plus would it have killed them to show more scenes of Carol and Maria getting their Top Gun on?), it was beyond wonderful to see another hero story that lets the other 51 percent of the population feel super about themselves for a change. Happy Marvel-ous weekend, all.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Meet Your New Princesses

Well, it’s official. Disney has completed its $71.3 billion acquisition of 21st Century Fox’s vast film and TV properties (but not Fox News – a.k.a. Trump’s Gorilla Channel – unfortunately). What that means is there are a whoooooole lotta new Disney princesses running around this world than there were last week. For instance, Buffy Summers is now a member of the Disney princess pantheon. What, ex-cheerleaders from Southern California Hellmouths who died and came back can totally be princesses. I mean, she already had the kicky boots and everything.

The one thing I can say for sure is there will be a lot more weapons training at the Disney princess slumber parties moving forward.

Mulan is already down with these new activities, obviously.

And Merida is very excited to check out Buffy’s crossbow collection.

But what I’m most looking forward to is the nice, long conversation Willow plans to have with Elsa.

Though, I must admit, Buffy will have some competition for the Fiercest New Disney Princess title with Bernadine Harris.

And, it goes without saying, Ripley is high up there, too.

But, if we’re really being honest, no one beats new Disney Queen Dr. Frank N. Furter. No one.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Otterly Sorry

The Ides of March hit hard (yes, yes – I know if was officially last week). Sorry for the post lateness today. So here is an otter snuggling with his favorite kayaker. This is basically my life’s dream, FYI.

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.