Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Lesbian Reality

A splashy reality show about LESBIANS IN FLORIDA? Yeah, go ahead and tilt your head, but admit it you’re probably gonna watch at least a little bit of the new Amazon Prime series “Tampa Baes.” Now, I’m no reality TV junkie. The reality shows I watch regularly are typically about either food or home improvement or British people baking. Oh and I watch “Making It” with Amy Poehler because it’s cute and Nick Offerman is one of the more acceptable straight white men out there — plus they still have some fun Leslie & Ron energy as hosts.

Right, where were we? Oh yeah, Florida Lesbians! Amazon Prime described the series as about:

“The young lesbian ‘it-crowd’ navigating and celebrating life in Tampa Bay – Florida’s LGBTQ+ hub and the place to see and be seen. Always ready for an adventure or a good party, this group of loyal friends – and sometimes more than friends – is ambitious and unapologetic while constantly battling stereotypes and labels. With all eyes on these fun-loving women at this pivotal moment in their personal and professional lives, there’s not a challenge or hot-button issue they won’t tackle, even if it means getting real with one another.”
So like “the Real Lesbians of Tampa Bay” or something, basically.

Now those with long enough memories will remember we’ve had a splashy lesbian reality show already, “The Real L Word,” from Ilene Chaiken herself about the young lesbian “it-crowd” in Los Angeles. The show spawned its own mini-universe of LA-based celesbians when it ran for three seasons, from 2010 to 2012, on Showtime. As I recall, they even had a location switch in the last season when the show went “bi-coastal” between LA and NY. And then, in 2014, to prove it wasn’t all about just capitalizing on sexy lesbians and their sexy drama, Ilene produced “Real L Word: Mississippi” in 2014. I watched that too, and it bummed me out about the hard hold the closet and self-loathing still has on too many (and you know, the continual horror of bigots).

Also, those with extra long memories may remember our old friend Logo lead the way in lesbian reality shows in the late 2000s — first in 2007 with “Curl Girls” about a groups of lesbian surfers and then in 2008-2009 with “Gimme Sugar” about a group of queer women promoting a nightclub. I have vague recollections of both shows, but it was harder to watch everything back then so I don’t recall if I watched either in their entirety. And, if I did, um, they didn’t leave a huge impression.

Anyway, back to Florida Lesbians. The White Party/Beach Party/Pool Party vibes from the first promo images are giving me distinct “The Real L Word” flashbacks. Plus, those hoping for a lot of butch/masc representation might be dissapointed at first glance (though, I see you top knots, I see you). Sadly, same goes for those looking for better body size representation, but alas that’s basically all of the business called show.

Time will tell if the names Ali Myers, Nelly Ramirez, Shiva Pishdad, Jordan Whitley, Marissa Gialousis, Summer Mitchell, Cuppie Bragg, Brianna Murphy, Haley Grable, Melanie Posner, Olivia Mullins and Mack McKenzie (the full cast) become emblazoned on our collective queer gal consciousnesses. But, yeah, of course I’m going to watch at least a little. Y’all know hate watching is a thing, right?

Monday, July 26, 2021

Music Monday: Brandi Edition

It’s been a long and hard pandemic for all of us, to be sure (and, it ain’t over folks). But I can imagine for such a pure performer like Brandi Carlile, being forced off the road and out of theaters and away from crowds, well, that’s got to hurt. But Brandi used her forced time off to write with her longtime collaborators the twins. They wrote so much that her latest album “In These Silent Days” will be released Oct. 1. She released the video for its first single, “Right On Time,” last week.

She told Rolling Stone about the experience of writing the record:

“Never before have the twins and I written an album during a time of such uncertainty and quiet solitude. I never imagined that I’d feel so exposed and weird as an artist without the armor of a costume, the thrill of an applause and the platform of the sacred stage. Despite all this, the songs flowed through — pure and unperformed, loud and proud, joyful and mournful.”
The video is an interesting homage to larger-than-life stage personalities like Elton John and David Bowie, while Brandi herself is glassed off from the world. You know, symbolism and shit. Also, did I mention Courteney Cox directed it? Yes, that Coureney Cox. I can’t say if glam-rock Brandi is my favorite look for her, but goodness, have I missed those soaring pipes. Probably won’t be until next year when I’m able to see her again on a stage. But I will, oh I will. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, July 23, 2021

My Olympic Weekend Crush

For all its many (many, many, many, many, many*) problematic issues, I still plan to watch the Tokyo Olympics starting tonight. I just can’t quit watching athletes in peak physical condition achieve their dreams and ll that triumph of the human spirit shit. Also, jock women are hot and you know it. To kick off the Lez Olympics here is the U.S. Women’s Rowing team helpfully explaining which members of are gay and which are not. The popular TIkTok meme is a delight to watch after years (and years and year and years and years and years) spent scraping the outer edges of the Internet to figure out which athletes were actually out and which were only, you know, known by those in the know. According to Outsports, this Olympics there will be at least 142 out athletes competing, more than double the number from Rio and exponentially more than previous Olympics as well. What a difference a decade or two makes, eh?
@kennychase25

If you weren’t interested in rowing before…let me introduce our OlympiGays™️ ##olympics ##gayathlete ##rowing ##lgbtq ##lgbt🌈 ##tokyo2020 ##fyp

♬ the token straight - chloe
Out Olympic rower Kenny Chase posted the video. Follow her on TikTok or Instagram and you’ll find a delightful assortment of queer affirmation and lady arm porn. Hello, rower arms and rower backs, hello. Yeah, admit it, for all its flaws it’s hard to find a more satisfying and varied display of female physical power, skill and talent than the Olympics. So light the torch and let’s queer up this place. I call upon the athletes of the world to assemble and go faster, higher, stronger, gayer in Tokyo. Happy Olympic weekend, all.
* Yes, I am still mad about Sha’Carri. The former (REPUBLICAN) Speaker of the House is on the board of a cannabis company now, so let’s not pretend this is about just “following the rules” and tell it like it is. One class/race of Americans gets to profit off marijuana, the other side gets only trouble and misery. Legalize it federally and expunge all past possession convictions, period.

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Drawn Out

When last we saw Tig she was getting CGI-ed into a Vegas heist zombie apocalypse movie – as one does. And when next we see her she’ll be even more animated. See what I did there? The out lesbian comic has a new comedy special coming to HBO Max this weekend. And, yes, it is animated – which, sure, why not. Interesting concept. Also, it appears she is depicted in different animation styles throughout the show, which, sure, why not. Interesting concept. Plus, it gives us a queer representation a twofer – comedy special and animated special. Can she make it the two great things that go great together of comedy? Sure, why not?

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Single Serving of Sara

Is it Lesbian Bat Signal time? Or, you know, something pretty darn close for single LGBTQ+ folks everywhere? This is a public service announcement for all peoples interested in dating Sara Ramirez. Yep, they’re single now. Earlier this month Sara announced their separation from husband Ryan DeBolt after 9 years of marriage in a tasteful Instagram post. The former “Grey’s Anatomy” actor came out as bisexual and non-binary after leaving the show in 2016. They’ve since thrown themself into supporting LGBTQ+ and POC causes.

Sara will also be a very welcome queer addition to the new revival of “Sex and the City,” HBO Max’s “And Just Like That.” The series has began filming recently in New York and while Sara isn’t in the first official photo of the famous former foursome (and now threesome, since Kim Cattrall/Samantha isn’t rejoining the series), I think we can safely say from the first on-set shots of them that The Gay will not be ignored. I mean, that outfit alone just hit on someone at Cubbyhole.

So here’s your chance, single folks. Shoot your shot. I mean, with that hair and those pipes and all that, um, you know, I doubt Sara will be single for long.

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

A Real Bee Charmer

Wanna feel good about what’s still possible in this world and awed at a young person’s talent while still feeling a tinge of outrage it took this long for another milestone to fall (you know that feeling, right)? Earlier this month Zaila Avant-garde became the first Black American student to win the prestigious Scripps National Spelling Bee. Since 1925, when the national spelling bee started, only one other Black student, 12-year-old from Jamaican Jody-Anne Maxwell, has won the championship. So, yeah, I can do math — 96 years and only two Black children have ever won. But, sure, let’s keep Republican statehouses keep banning the teaching of our country’s deep-rooted racist history (not to mention present) because it hurts white people’s feelings or whatever.

Anyway, this post is not meant to be another bummer list of grievances (because, heavens, where do we stop with that?), but a celebration of Zaila. And spelling isn’t even her best subject. Zaila’s true passion is basketball. Like, the girl has mad skills. She even holds three Guinness Book of World Records in the sport. Shooting. Dribbling. Juggling. Riding a freaking unicycle while seemingly doing all three. Like, it’s not fair to get that much mental and physical ability in one little person, right? Imagine if you won a national championship for your side hustle? All that and she has a cool name? Yeah, I can’t wait to see what she becomes when she grows up.

Monday, July 19, 2021

Music Monday: P!nk Edition

If you missed the Billboard Music Awards a couple months ago, (which, honestly, I did because who has time for non-EGOT shows in this economy?) you missed this lovely performance of P!nk. The artist formerly known as Alecia Moore performed a medley of her hits in celebration of receiving a well-deserved Icon Award. She opened her performance by performing aerial stunts with her 10-year-old daughter Willow. I’ve always liked P!nk, and well, she’s on my wife’s freebie list. So, you’re welcome, honey. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, July 16, 2021

My Weekend Crush

It’s my blog and I’ll post about Jodie Foster twice in one week if I want to. Fifteen years ago Jodie was my very first Weekend Crush. She’s kind of my Forever Crush, as she was perhaps the first female celebrity I found myself following obsessively (which, bad word choice given her unfortunate history with fanatics — but I promise my obsession is largely academic and sedentary.) And I am struck by how the magnificent architecture of her face has aged into an elegant enduring monument of her life experiences. Her ice-blue eyes are as sharp as ever, and the lines are a reminder of where she’s been. From that Coppertone baby to a happily married gay woman with a distinguished career. Honestly, what I think I’m happiest about is how her face now reveals more joy. Sure, she’s not crazy effusive. But there’s an almost impish spark amid the ever-present toughness. Before — back when her private life was private and you’d never see her walking down the red carpets with her actual partner — there was a hardness behind that toughness. A guard that was never dropped. Now, clearly, I could be all projecting. I don’t know Jodie, obviously, and am not privy to the intricacies of her inner life. But I’ve known a lot of people pre and post coming out and the relief and ease that comes with time is palpable. I guess, in the end, that’s the eternal power of coming out. The energy we waste not being ourselves is energy we could have spent just enjoying our lives. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Gender Fuck Thursday: The Crown Edition

I did not watch the latest season of “The Crown” — mostly because I haven’t watched any seasons of “The Crown” except for the few random episodes I catch when I’m visiting my mom. But I heard endlessly good things about it, plus there’s Gillian Anderson and Olivia Colman and Emma Corrin. I wasn’t too familiar with Emma before the English actor was cast as Princess Diana for the show’s fourth season other than that they looked a lot like the late royal, complete with those huge blue deer eyes. But now, I’m positively curious as Emma appears to have come out as both queer and non-binary.
Last week they posted a series of shots of themselves in binders, and updated (but then perhaps deleted — they weren’t there when I looked but articles mentioned they were new in their Instagram bio) their pronouns to she/they. The binder photoshoot were in a post that read, in part:
“It’s all a journey right. Lots of twists and turns and change and that’s ok! Embrace it.”
Life’s a journey, enjoy where it takes you and you take it. Be like Lizzo and respect people’s identities.

Wednesday, July 14, 2021

Vax That Thang Up

This isn’t particularly gay. And I don’t typically write about straight male rappers here. Though, the video also includes a lot of attractive women backing that vaxxed thing up — so there’s that. But, honestly, I kind of love it. Juvenile telling people to “Vax That Thang Up” to his “Back That Azz Up” rap booty anthem? Yes. Definitely. More of this. Sure, it’s a little cringey. Yeah, it’s actually a dating app stunt. But it’s also catchy and PEOPLE SHOULD GET FUCKING VACCINATED. Like, you wanna fuck? Get your Pfizer, Moderna, J&J or whatever they’ve got where you are. The shots are free to anyone 12 and up and freely available. GET THAT JAB, young horny people (and older horny people — and non-horny people...EVERYONE GET YOUR SHOT).

Look, COVID-19 is not done with us, particularly the frighteningly contagious Delta variant. And our Republican family members, friends, neighbors and kooks across the country are fucking up our shot at herd immunity. We’re only at 55.8% of those 12 and up fully vaccinated in America despite it being available for more than six months. So, whatever works. Shoot your shot, but get your shot first. Vax. That. Thang. Up. America.

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Franco-Foster

Would you like to watch Jodie Foster talk uninterrupted for three minutes in flawless French? Yeah, of course you do. A week ago Jodie was awarded an honorary Palme d’Or for lifetime achievement at the Cannes Film Festival in the South of France. She accepted in her typical fluent French, which, rawrrr.

One of the things I love about Jodie’s current career moment is how completely herself she has finally become. After years of being the secretive one, she’s now truly the brave one as she has allowed the world into her personal life. I mean, not a lot. But enough so that we all know Jodie is happily married to a woman, the also very talented Alexandra Hedison (who possibly dodged a bullet by not marrying that other lesbian), and they walk the red carpet together and they canoodle in public and they kiss when she wins major award and it’s all very normal because that’s what being gay and in a relationship is. Kissing your wife when you feel like it, holding her arm when out on the town. I’m so happy for her — and not just because she was honored at Cannes this year. But because she seems happy and herself. And, in the end, isn’t that what we all want? Oh, that and to be able to speak flawless French, like Jodie.

Also, I don’t mean to be that creep, but goodness they’re a handsome couple.

Monday, July 12, 2021

Music Monday: Free Britney, Bitch

Britney Spears is, hands down, one of the best pop performers we’ve ever produced. “Toxic” is still an all-time banger. Hell, they’re all still bangers. Because Britney embodies the pop aesthetic perfectly. As it turned out, too perfectly. That this very talented woman has been under conservatorship for the last 13 years, and is now petitioning to get out is a painful reminder that free will is never guaranteed. This is what we do, I guess, when women “act out.” Like, sure, she shaved her head and hit a car with her umbrella. Robert Downey Jr. infamously woke up in a strange kid’s bed after yet another drug bender. Yet he maintained his career and his financial and personal decision making and his free fucking will throughout (I mean, he did go to jail a few times, but still no one filed to take away his decision making abilities altogether.) Anyway, this is a long way of saying Free Britney, Bitch.

While obviously the whole jailbait branding of her early career was problematic. But then selling sex is pretty much a fundamental keystone of rock ’n roll. Like if you didn’t realize you were a gay lady before watching the 2000 VMAs, I’m pretty sure you knew right after a then 18-year-old Britney tore off those tuxedo pants. Hello. May the courts realize this and let this not-a-girl-definitely-a-grown-ass-almost-40-year-old woman run her own life. Yet last month the court denied her request to remove her father as a conservator. As if we needed more reminders of the iron-fist patriarchy imposes over young girls and women already. Look, while it’s healthy to seek help — especially in times of mental distress, removing one’s free will is never truly helping. In fact it’s exactly the opposite. So, go get ‘em, Brit-Brit.

Friday, July 09, 2021

My Weekend Crush

I know this is one of those things presented as a “feel-good” story or “heartwarming” tales. Sixty years after she wrote to the management of the New York Yankees asking to be a bat girl, and was summarily rejected, a now 70-year-old Gwen Goldman got her wish. She was named honorary bay girl for a game, and threw out the ceremonial first pitch all while wearing her beloved pinstripes. And it’s great, truly. I’m happy for Gwen and her family and everyone involved. The thrill of a lifetime delayed is still a thrill, after all.

But that it was delayed, by six damn decades, just because of her gender was and is just outrageous. That we continue to create barriers to employment, pay, opportunity, accomplishment based on our gender, our race, our sexuality or any of the other traits that divide us (but shouldn’t) is maddening. That we continue to accept these disparities is outrageous. We’ve never had a female U.S. president? Insane. Only four of the current Fortune 500 CEOs are Black? Shameful. It wasn not until earlier this year we saw the first out gay Cabinet member (Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg) and first out transgender federal official (Assistant Secretary of Health Rachel Levine) to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Unacceptable.

Seeing a story like this reminds me of that whole genre of stories meant to pull on the hearstrings, but when you actually think about it they are just pretty sad. Like when a high school science club has to build a disabled grader schooler a wheel chair out of Legos because the kid’s insurance won’t cover a real one. That’s not heartwarming. That’s a society with its priorities horribly askew. We should be demanding that all people have access to equal medical care because wealth shouldn’t determine health. But instead healthcare is a business. Our lives are just ways to make money.

Seeing stories like this is also supposed to remind us how far we have come. But this is not the ancient history we wish it was. Gwen is 70. Ruby Bridges, the first Black child to integrate a white school in the South, is 66. If Martin Luther King were still alive today he would be 92. Hell, Jimmy Carter was born before MLK and is still building houses at age 96. Our history is still very much alive and all around us. The bad old days were not as far away as we pretend. And those same ideological forced keep trying to bring them back (cough, voter suppression, cough) to our present day.

So, as happy as I am for Gwen and all the Gwens of the world who are lucky enough to have a long-standing wrong righted, may we strive to be a better society from the start – invite more people to follow their dreams without having to worry that the arbitrary nature of their gender or race or sexuality or anything else will hold them back. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, July 08, 2021

Gender Fuck Thursday: 100% That Ally

Lizzo is great. Demi Lovato is great. Lizzo supporting Demi by correcting their misgendering by some paparazzo on the street? Super great. I know sometimes we all mess up, and might misgender someone on accident. But what’s important is that we’re trying and being respectful. And if you’re an ally, you can show support by lifting the weight of having to constantly correct people’s mistakes – inadvertent or not. Be 100% that bitch for your queer, trans, non-binary friends and each other, always.

Wednesday, July 07, 2021

Force Majeure Gay

In case you were wondering, yes, cartoons have gotten a lot gayer. Between the rebooted “She-Ra and the Princesses of Power” on Netflix and the “Harley Quinn” animated series on HBO Max, you’d think things couldn’t get gayer. But while those two animated series have queer ladies a welcome dose of slow-burn same-sex superhero smoochies, “Q-Force” is just out from the start. The new animated series gets right to the gay stuff unlike “She-Ra” which took five seasons and “Harley” which took two to officially get there (granted, both shows had super queer aesthetics and LGBTQ auxiliary characters from the start). So don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed and appreciated both those shows. But this cranks the gay up past even Bow’s outfit on She-Ra. Plus there is a character named Twink and Wanda Sykes. So, yeah, I will definitely watch.

Tuesday, July 06, 2021

Let's Fucking Get Paid Equally

Yeah, I know it’s not Women’s History Month anymore or Pride Month anymore, but equality should be a 12-months a year proposition anyway. As much as some of the recent Olympic decisions (see: the Sha’carri Richardson nonsense among other things) have been unjust and ridiculous, I am still excited to see some of our nation’s best athletes – female athletes in particular – get to showcase their excellence. Now, that that excellence should be paid at the same rate as their male counterparts should not be controversial. Yet here we are. Like, it’s crazy-making to realize we as women still have to fight this hard just to get equal pay. Just like it’s crazy we’ve never had a woman elected president. And it’s crazy so few female CEOS still exist. And, of course, all these things are compounded by intesectionality meaning if it’s this hard for a team of (largely) white women to get pay equity think how much harder it is for women of color to get there, and then add in the exponential variables of sexuality and gender identity. Well, in short, fucking pay humans the same amount for the same work - period. And LFG USWNT.

Monday, July 05, 2021

Music Monday: Serotonin Edition

Just to prove that Pride lives on in our hearts, here’s some Girl in Red to boost your Serotonin. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, July 02, 2021

My Weekend Crush

Get used to saying Sha’Carri Richardson’s name – and when I say “saying,” I actually mean screaming it at the top of your lungs while also screaming “Gooooo!” and “USA!” and “Whooooooooo!” The sprinter placed first in the 100-meter finals at the Olympic trials last week, stamping her ticket to the Tokyo Olympic games and embossing her name on our collective consciousness. That speed. That talent. That hair. That everything. All that, plus she’s (very likely probably we’re all pretty sure) queer! Before winning the finals at the trials she told USA Today that her girlfriend picked her flaming orange locks:
“My girlfriend actually picked my color. She said it like spoke to her, the fact that it was just so loud and vibrant, and that’s who I am.”
Following the publication of that little tidbit, Sha’Carri tweeted a rainbow so, yeah, welcome to the Family. My love of the Olympics is no secret as the only acceptable time to scream “USA! USA!” (Only other acceptable usage is during the Women’s World Cup, but not the men’s – these are the rules.) I can’t wait to cheer/scream for Sha’Carri this summer. Happy weekend, all.

p.s. Well, shit. Are they really going to kick her off the Olympic team for a little weed? White men across the country are making multi-millions selling it legally at dispensaries that look like Apple stores. Come on now, no one in their right mind would call it performance enhancing.

Thursday, July 01, 2021

Proud Pauli

Pride Month may be officially over (though, given Queer Standard Time, it will continue to play through the end of the week here at Surrenders because we still haven’t passed the Equality Act so at very least we get a couple extra days in lieu of full civil rights…) Also, any time is a good time to learn about our badass queer elders.

The thing about history is it always matters who gets to tell theirs. Whose stories do we uplift and whose lives do we ignore? The answer is painfully obvious to anyone paying any kind of attention. Straight white men have always had their history told. But women? POC? Queer people? Gender non-conforming folks? Yeah, good luck with that. So learning about our true history and respecting our trailblazing queer elders is largely up to us. So it’s exciting to see Pauli Murray – a Black non-binary legal scholar who influenced legal greats like Thurgood Marshall and Ruth Bader Ginsburg – finally get their due.

I think we can all relate to their simple desire for a better, kinder, more equal world. A world where we are all free to be our most authentic selves. A country that won’t fight against our most basic humanity. How remarkable to be able to express all this so convincingly in a culture that did not even have the words yet to describe how they truly felt about themselves.

One need only look at the current totally manufactured and completely racist right-wing campaign against Critical Race Theory to realize how crucial an accurate telling of history is in our everyday lives. A whole political party right now is trying to tell you that America is not, and never has been, a racist country. So they are doing everything in their power to make sure their false history is taught instead. Because who gets to tell their history helps shape what the world will look like in the future. And, honestly, they would rather not share. Too many would rather we didn’t tell the truth about ourselves, so that they may continue to ignore and forget the hard work and harder battles that got us to where we are today. Our union may still be imperfect, but we wouldn’t make the progress we have without those the history books routinely leave out. Happy Bonus Pride Days, kittens.

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Proud L Words

Start Pride with “The L Word” and end Pride with “The L Word.” Now that’s what I call the ultimate Gay Lady bookends for June. The full trailer for the new season of “The L Word: Generation Q” has arrived and it’s filled with tons of Lesbian Drama and many big Queer Choices, per usual. Like that Gigi (Alice’s current girlfriend’s ex-wife, because queer ladies and their exes, amirite?) is making out with Bette (ex-wife of Tina who now looks to engaged to Rosie freaking O’Donnell). Or that Shane is making at very least eyes at a married lady. And the humbling fact that Angelica is old enough to make out with anyone (but yay for her and Jordi). All in all, I feel ready and excited to have these total hot messes back in my life. Happy Last Day of Pride, kittens.

Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Watch a Kajillion Times

On this, the penultimate day of Pride Month, I’m here to recommend an undiscovered gem of a movie. I posted about the trailer last August, when I wondered if it contained anything even remotely queer. Well, kittens, the answer is yes. The movie from offbeat filmmaker Miranda July (if you ever saw “You Me and Everyone We know,” you’ll know exactly what I mean by offbeat) is as offbeat as you would suspect. It stars Evan Rachel Wood (doing her best Elizabeth Holmes voice), Gina Rodriguez (who, goodness, can she fill out a simple T-shirt pair of jeans) and a nearly unrecognizable Debra Winger (I really did pause the trailer to make sure that was here). It’s hard to explain what this movie (essentially about a family of low-level grifters and the stranger who enters their lives) is truly about other than to say it’s about family dysfunction and finally finding the tenderness you need. Go into it without expectations and just enjoy its unhurried unfurling. It’s streaming right now on HBO Max. Did I mention Evan & Gina have great chemistry? Because, yeah, they do.

If you’ve watched the movie, watch the clip below. If you have not watched the movie, DO NOT WATCH THE CLIP BELOW. It’s basically the entire end of the movie. But goodness, did I rewatch the heck out of it after finishing the movie. Hello.

Monday, June 28, 2021

Music Matters: The Girls Edition

As a dutiful lesbian, I actually saw The Girls sing this at the Fillmore back in 2016. This isn’t the same night (they’re wearing different shirts). But each of the many (many) time I’ve seen them live I’ve reveled in the joy that is a room full of queer women (and their friends) singing the same songs at the top of their lungs. So get out your own map in these waning days of Pride and make the most of whatever comes your way. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, June 25, 2021

Vacation Vixen: Kate & Tina

Yes, I know, Tina isn’t technically a Gay. But she is my Fake TV/Movie Wife and hugging certified Gay Kate McKinnon. So, you know, I’m gonna give it a pass. Because when two great things look great together, don’t fight it. Happy vacation weekend, all.

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Vacation Vixen: Jodie & Alexandra

I know paparazzi shots aren’t cool. But something about the incredibly lesbian aesthetic of seeing Jodie Foster and her wife Alexandra Hedison walking around New York City late last month just makes me smile. Like they’re so obviously gay and comfortable with themselves and each other. And they’re both annoyed at the interloper in an endearingly grumpy dyke way. From strolling around together without a care to wearing pajamas to big fancy Zoom award nights, I’m just happy they’ve come to this point. And, you know, sorry for the intrusion, ladies.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Vacation Vixen: Samira & Lauren

I guess it’s queer couples week here because next up is Samira Wiley and Lauren Morelli. The married couple had big news to celebrate this April, as they welcomed their first child – a baby girl named George Elizabeth. Mazel tov to the happy new moms. No, I’m still not over Poussey, but at least these ladies are still going strong despite the pandemic and, well *waves arms at everything*.

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Vacation Vixen: Sarah & Holland

Looking back, do you know I didn’t have a single Vacation Vixen in 2020? Like, what a year not to take some fucking time off. I mean, I obviously it wasn’t a year to go jet setting. But still. Also my short break this April was bereavement leave, not a vacation. So, yeah, I guess that means I’m long overdue for a damn vacation. This week I’m giving myself a little time and the first more than one-night stay away in, well, too damn long. I’m going with vaccinated friends for a well-deserved getaway where we plan to drink wine and soak in a hot tub and just be our gay ass selves to the fullest on what would ordinarily be our Pride Weekend. But, as I never leave you high and dry, I get ready for a full week’s worth of queer women Vacation Vixens to fill the void starting with Sarah Paulson and Holland Taylor. I hope these two never beak up and continue Carol-and-Therese-ing themselves into our little gay hearts forever. See you in the flip side, kittens (and Sarah and Holland’s puppy).

Monday, June 21, 2021

Music Monday: Hayley Edition

Would it even be Pride Month if lesbian pop princess Hayley Kiyoko/Lesbian Jesus didn’t put out another cinematic queer music video featuring her kissing another lady? Like each one of her mini movie videos are gorgeous little gay romances and I can’t even begin to imagine how reaffirming it must feel to see those as a tween or teen or queer person coming out really at any age really. Get your Pride on and get your girl and ride off into that sunset, ladies. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, June 18, 2021

My Weekend Crush

Jean Smart has always been great, we’ve just forgotten to notice for too long. If you’ve watched “Hacks” or “Mare of Easttown” or “Watchmen” or “Fargo” recently you were jolted out of your fog and remembered, immediately, how great she has always been. Like, I knew back in her “Designing Women” days as she played up her role as loveable-if-naive Charlene Frazier (basically the group’s much taller Rose).

She has worked steadily since her six seasons on “Designing Women” ended in 1991. But she’s only recently gotten the acclaim she has deserved all along for her work. In part, I think it’s because she can chameleon herself so well into roles. She was ditzy Charlene for so many. But underneath has always been a sharp, incisive talent able to become whatever she needs to be in the moment.

Whether she’s playing the matriarch to a crime family (“Fargo”) or a FBI Agent Laurie Blake (“Watchmen”) or Kate Winslet’s long-suffering caustic mother (“Mare of Easttown”) or a comedy legend fighting the sunsetting of her career (“Hacks”) she makes you believe. And, truly, that’s all you can ask from an actor. That their performance engrosses you so much you almost forget who they are.

Her most recent work, the HBO Max series “Hacks,” in particular showcases her in a way that cannot be ignored. While she has been an always excellent supporting star, giving her a start turn at 69 is inspired and so well deserved. She fully inhabits the complicated loneliness of success, ambition, privilege and passion as female comedy icon Deborah Vance.

(Not to mention the show’s other star, Hannah Einbinder, plays a bisexual up-and-coming comedy writer. And they may or may not kiss at some point on screen which I will say no more about but yeah it happens. Also Hannah is also an out bisexual in real life, and the daughter of SNL great Laraine Newman — yes, really.)

After a steady career these last 30 years after leaving “Designing Women,” Jean most definitely deserves all the “Jean Smartaissance” talk. Like, if she doesn’t start next year off with an Emmy or two, then what even is the point?

Also, did you know that Jean married her “Designing Women” co-star Richard Gilliland (who actually played Annie Potts character Mary Jo’s boyfriend) in 1987 and they were together until his death earlier this spring? Oh, and here’s one last bit of fascinating Jean Smart trivia. She is a direct descendent of Dorcas Hoar, one of the last women convicted of witchcraft (but whose life was spared) during the Salem witch trials during the late 17th Century.

Yes, Jean Smart is a direct descendent of the witches they could not burn. I guess that truly explains it all. Happy weekend, all.

P.s. “Hacks” is as excellent as everyone has said, even if I’m miffed at them for the very obvious, self-destructive “twist” at the end which *yawn* we all saw coming. But there will be a second season to make up for it, so on with the show.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Gender Fuck Thursday: Villanelle's Accents

Some Thursdays you just need to watch Villanelle/Jodie Comer strut around in a beautiful pin-stripe suit while impeccable running through four accents in under a minute just to impress Eve/Sandra Oh. And that Thursday is today.

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

So Much Gay Fear

Is it progress for us to be terrorized over and over again in horror films? Let’s find out. The trailer for the “Fear Street” movie trilogy (yes, three of them all ready to go) was released and it definitely looks like it has queer female couples in various states of distress through time. Now, I’m not a big horror person — the world is violent and scary enough as is. But, I am interested to see how the queer storylines play out. While it’s seemingly clever to have the same town terrorized over-and-over again through history, doesn’t each film look basically like reruns of other well-known horror tropes? Like we’ve got summer camp killers and witch trial hauntings and on-trend 90s nostalgia. Anyway, someone summarize how the gays fare for me once this comes out so I don’t have to watch from behind my pillow.

p.s. In six-degrees of playing queer separation, one of the only truly identifiable leads from the films, “Community” star Gillian Jacobs, was in the lesbian buddy/straight buddy best friend dramedy “Life Partners.” But as the straight buddy. So, you know, there is still time for that ceremonial toaster oven if this movie pans out. We shall see.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Ma Belle, Ma Threesome

Well, this certainly looks interesting. “Ma Belle, My Beauty” is the story of a polyamourous love triangle set in sun-dappled South of France. Yeah, I know, there’s a dude. I have no idea how it all ends or what viewers will be left with at the end. But I am certainly game to give the film about a married husband and wife who have their female third return to their lives after a two-year absence. The film is the first feature from Marion Hill, a Vietnamese-French-English filmmaker who describes her work as “devoted to narratives and visuals of queer femininity and femme power.” So, you know, thumbs up to that. Look, I’m a sucker for beautiful foreign settings and (duh) beautiful women. And this film has that baked right into the title.

Monday, June 14, 2021

Music Monday: Sleater-Kinney Edition

Any queer gal alive in the late 90s, early 00s can likely fall down an endless memory hole with the mere mention of Sleater-Kinney. With everything 90s being back (hello, The Linda Lindas, you adorably awesome feminist scamps), it only seems right that some of the O.G.s are staking their claim again on the musical landscape. But since the departure of drummer Janet Weiss from the band in 2019, it’s been an adjustment to the new duo Sleater-Kinney of Corin Tucker and Carrie Brownstein. So it only seems appropriate that “Worry With You” is an anthem to new and possibly messy relationships. I don’t know what’s in those little blue bottles, but it seems to be working – for better or for worse. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, June 11, 2021

My Weekend Crush

I didn’t grow up with “Blues Clues,” and my niece and nephews are too old to watch now. So basically all I know about the Nickelodeon show is that the original popular kiddie show host left abruptly a few years into the show’s run because, in part, he didn’t really want to be a popular kiddie show host for the rest of his life. So, you know, understandable. Apparently the show was rebooted on Nick in 2019 and now it’s surely about to get a lot of the MAGA/Christian Right/Wingnuttery Wing people pearl clutching because they dared to create a fun virtual Pride parade song for children featuring “RuPaul's Drag Race Season” contestant Nina West. Oh no, how will children handle the radical notion that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, non-binary, pansexual and asexual people exist in this world? WHO WILL PROTECT THE CHILDREN?!? (Unless, of course, that child needs health insurance, or a free school lunch, or food stamps, or childcare, or protection from gun violence, or…)

Honestly, if you’re a parent and you don’t explain LGBTQ people to your children you’re not really doing a great job as a parent. Because we exist, as much as these people would rather we didn’t. Part of being a parent should be explaining that humanity comes in all different shapes and sizes and races and ethnicities and sexualities. But somehow whenever it comes to LGBTQ+ people, telling children we exist is “indoctrination” or “communism.” (Yes, really, communism.) Like, sure, tell children an imaginary fairy breaks into their homes and steals their teeth in exchange for money in the dead of the night, but acknowledging a cartoon transgender beaver is TOO MUCH. It’s so endlessly tiresome. Anyway, enjoy this fun, upbeat and inclusive song. Kids should be told LGBTQ+ people exist, period. Also, you know this song is a bop. Like, we know how to celebrate because for centuries the world has tried to stop us from doing just that. Happy Weekend, all you glorious queers.

p.s. Honestly, the only thing I don’t understand about the song is why the numbers don’t coincide with the animated animals. They’re not going by fives and sevens, right? Did I forget how to count during the pandemic. Or is this like Queer Standard Time where we make our own rules because the world won’t let us play by theirs?

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Army of Tig

So, sadly predictably, “Army of the Dead” was not very good. Like, only a man who recut a superhero movie into a four-hour opus would think he could pull off a zombie heist movie with authentic pathos. Instead, basically, a bunch of folks died needless graphic deaths because ... money? Yeah, basically. But the one thing I did enjoy about the film — and honestly it was a purposeful afterthought at best — was the casting of Tig Notaro as the crew’s helicopter pilot.

The out comic wasn’t originally part of the movie. She came on board later after the film had finished shooting, when they had to recast the role of comic Chris D’Elia who was originally tapped to play the role of the pilot. But after filming was done, D’Elia’s history of sexually pursuing underage girls got him the Kevin Spacey treatment. Like, whoops, we cast a gross sex monster. Our bad. Let’s pretend this never happened, eh?

As much as I am all for recasting disgusting sexual predators and zapping them out of pop culture, how boring was that casting choice in the first place? Like, you take this zombie movie with a somewhat diverse cast and then pick the most uninspired and uninspiring straight white man for its main comic relief role? That’s just lazy casting, folks. But you put someone like Tig in the role and automatically it’s more interesting. So it’s the proverbial win-win, you don’t go for the obvious/lazy choice who also happens to be a major sex pest and instead hire an out actor who cleans up so well she basically looks like a lesbian Tom Cruise.

But, again, I really can’t recommend this movie. Unless, of course, you want to see how well they did green screening Tig into the picture. Yes, all her scenes were shot against a green screen. In fact, she only interacted on set with one of the movie’s other actors, Ana de la Reguera. I think they did a pretty good job of editing the gross dude out and Tig in. But then, even if they’d used a cardboard cut-out of Tig instead of that D’Elia, it would have been a vast improvement.

Wednesday, June 09, 2021

The Soft Butch Detective

I started “Mare of Easttown” a little late, binging most of the season and then watching the last two episodes in real time. I really don’t have a great excuse for why I didn’t start promptly, other than that it’s been a long 15 months and I’m not perfect – OK. I’M NOT PERFECT. Kidding! (I obviously am perfect.) Kidding, but for real this time. Anyway. Back to Mare and her Easttown. Honestly the show was custom-made for me. A veteran lady detective who is Very Good at her job. A twisty-turny case. A lot of weird accents. A significant queer female character (that, bonus points & spoilers … does not die!) All that plus Kate Winslet. Come on, I have no idea why I waited. And it is also the second consecutive Certifiable Soft Butch™ role of Kate’s career (after “Ammonite,” the lesbian rocks/spoilers…sitting on Kate Winslet’s face movie). Besides all the Wawa subs, the best thing about the series was the space it gave its lead female performers to just act the shit out of everything. Kate, Jean Smart, Julianne Nicholson and Angourie Rice brought despair, grit, frailty and humanity to their roles. They were a pleasure to watch, even if Easttown does not entirely seem like a pleasure to live in.

Plus, it gives us another opportunity to see that other Kate, Kate McKinnon, do what she does best. I really, really enjoyed “Mare of Easttown,” and if I’m being perfectly honest with myself I would totally also watch “Murder Durder.”

Tuesday, June 08, 2021

Second Feel

I watched the first season of “Feel Good” when it came out in basically one sitting at the start of the pandemic. And while I liked it, I wasn’t really in the right mood to fully appreciate the lives of these complicated, messy, occasionally unlikable and often frustrating queer people. Yes, yes – I know no one wants to watch happy perfect people (queer or otherwise). But all last year I leaned hard into comforting stories (think “Schitt’s Creek,” “Great British Baking Show” et al) because of how uncomforting everything in the world felt.

So as much as I thought the semi-autobiographical story of queer comic Mae Martin’s life/love/recovery/relapse/gender identity was well done, I just wasn’t in the right place to truly appreciate it. Now, after the Orange Stain is out of the White House and the pandemic is (sorta, kinda) coming under control, I feel I might be in a better headspace to enjoy another helping of Mae & their Complicated (Big C) Life. So, thoughts on the first second? Excited for the second? I mean, obviously, any show with Lisa Kudrow deserves a second chance – or basically all the chances.

Monday, June 07, 2021

Music Mondays: The Linda Lindas

Fuck – and I mean this most sincerely – Yeah! It took me longer than it should have to finally watch The Linda Lindas and their viral hit “Racist, Sexist Boy” (live from the LA Library). But now that it has I have it an “It’s Pride Again” stuck in my head on an endless loop. As someone who actually lived through the Riot grrrl era, I am so incredibly pleased (and perhaps a little proud) that the next generation has chosen to continue to embrace the feminist punk perspective and aesthetic (I see that Bikini Kill T-shirt, I certainly do). It’s one of the vestiges of the 90s I’m actually glad are back, unlike acid wash mom jeans. I’m also glad it’s becoming more inclusive and more diverse. The more the merrier when it comes to smashing the patriarchy (and guitars). So rock on, The Linda Lindas with your new record deal. Racist, sexist boys everywhere can fuck – and I mean this most sincerely – right off.

Friday, June 04, 2021

My Weekend Crush

As we finish up this first week of Pride, let us pay homage to The Most Lesbian Show Ever “The L Word” (I mean, it’s in the damn name and all) and its revival “TLW: Generation Q.” The series finished shooting its second season last week (just in time for Pride, how considerate). And I have a lot of capital F Feelings about seeing the cast back together again. If last year’s anticipation was about seeing what the new series was all about, this years is about seeing the continuation of the lives of these (albeit) fictional queer women whose stories I have invested literal years of my own life into. Mostly, I’m just glad there’s still space on major platforms for our lives, and those of our fellow LGBTQ folks, to be show on television. Representation always matters. And the new season will bring old favorites (Helena Peabody, as I live and breathe) and new nemeses (Rosie is pretty brilliant/obvious casting) and new icons (Vanessa Williams was great in a too brief stint on “Girls5Eva” so let’s give her a lot more to do here people, she deserves it). Sure, it’s not perfect and it’s never been perfect. But you always remember your first lesbian show. So now the wait until August 8 for it all to begin again. Also, how did I not know Jacqueline Toboni/Finley and Kassandra Clementi were a thing? Like, did I miss the memo? Here’s to the continual overt queering of the cast. Remember when Leisha was the only out one? Yeah, me too. Happy Big Lesbian Weekend, all.

p.s. If the first teaser trailer for the second season is any indication, plenty of fighting, fucking, crying, drinking will be happening. As it should be.

Thursday, June 03, 2021

A New Hunger

In an effort to keep the first week of Pride as queer as possible (AQAP for future reference) here at Surrenders, here’s some more good gay news. Remember when I said Angela Robinson had inked a production deal with Warner Brothers? Well the first fruits of that appear to be ripening as Angela is in talks to direct a remake of “The Hunger.” Yes, that “The Hunger.” The movie that started the whole sexy lesbian vampires thing. The movie with Catherine Deneuve and Susan Sarandon and David Bowie (because why not also have David Bowie).

I’m excited about this movie for a few reasons including but not limited to that Angela is a talented director (“D.E.B.S.” remains campy fun and you know it), she knows her way around a lesbian vampire (hello, “True Blood” much), and this means I can watch “The Hunger” without my residual distaste for all things Susan Sarandon (no, ma’am, Trump and Clinton were emphatically NOT exactly the same). I’m always a sucker for a lesbian vampire, no matter how bad the movie (and, kittens, “The Hunger” was not good), so I hope this movie can give us the lesbian vampirism we deserve. Or at least a chance for me to watch the O.G. lesbian vampire movie concept without she whose name will not be spoken again. What? If immortal lesbian vampires can be a thing I can hold a grudge for five years and counting no problem.

Wednesday, June 02, 2021

Sex & The Sara

Look, I was always going to watch the “Sex and the City” revival because I watched the originals and may or may not have hosted a cosmopolitan-soaked premiere party in the past and even perhaps snuck some vodka into the first movie screening and also my wife knows basically every episode by heart. Yes, I know its’ super straight and super white and super ladies of a certain income level and all that jazz. I know. But, again, the heart wants what it wants – in television and in love.

But now I’m super thrilled that the new revival will at least have one bona fide queer person of color in the cast. Sara Ramirez, who identifies as bisexual and non-binary, has joined the cast as “Che Diaz (they/them), a nonbinary, queer stand-up comedian who hosts a podcast on which Carrie is regularly featured.” The Hollywood Reporter also called their character a “big presence with a big heart whose outrageous sense of humor and progressive, human overview of gender roles has made them and their podcast very popular.”

So, basically, it sounds like Sara’s Che is the replacement for Kim Cattrall’s Samantha. The feud between Kim and series star Sarah Jessica Parker is far from secret, but props to Kim for requesting (and apparently having said request granted) that whoever be cast to replace her character be more inclusive than the lily-white original series cast. As for its queer female representation over the years, it’s been mostly Very Special Episode territory. Remember when Carrie kissed Alanis Morissette and Miranda kiss a random lesbian on the elevator and Charlotte dressed as a Drag King and Samantha dated a lady for a few episodes? Let’s hope for more authentic queerness in the new series. I mean, we’ve all come a long way since SATC premiered back in 1998. Heck, both Sara and Cynthia were perceived as straight back then. So grab a cocktail and let’s see what happens.

Tuesday, June 01, 2021

Show Your Pride

HAPPY PRIDE, KITTENS. Yes, it’s back. Pride has returned and for all the understandable grumbling about the corporatization and straightification of Pride Month, let’s not forget what it’s really all about. Looking good on the back of a Dykes on Bikes motorcycle. Or the HRC or GLAAD float. KIDDING! Honestly, I don’t even know how many years it’s been since I went to the actual parade, let alone made it up early enough to see the Dykes on Bikes. Still for all our complaining about Pride, I do actually love it - or at least the sentiment of it if not the exact in-the-moment experience. So, let’s reminisce. Favorite Pride memories? Like can you believe it’s been 16 years since Dana, Alice & Shane abandoned Dana’s little brother with Jenny only to have him realize his own sexuality and have the best Pride ever? Break out the rainbow tchotchkes, fellow queers, this month is OURS.

Monday, May 31, 2021

Music Monday: It's Pride Again

Happy almost Pride Month, my fellow Alphabet Mafia members! Yes, it’s that time of year again when everything gets a rainbow and everyone is gay – sorta kinda still not really. While the pandemic cancelled all of our plans last year, this year the annual celebration of LGBTQ pride appears back on, again sorta kinda. And so of course returns the debate about what Pride should be about in the first place. Is it Rainbow Capitalism while dancing on the Deutsche bank float? Should it leave out the kink to be more mainstream and family friendly? Do we let uniformed cops march?

For me, and I think a lot of other folks under the Big Gay Umbrella, it’s personal. I can tell you in the 20+ years I’ve been celebrating Pride, I have seen it change and evolve greatly. Two of the biggest changes have been corporations slapping rainbows on everything and straight people showing up in droves.

Now we’ve talked about corporate pride before, and what it means to LGBTQ equality. While I appreciate the embrace of queer people and the realization that supporting us is profitable, never forget that corporations aren’t your friend. They only care about money, and accepting queer people is just good business these days. And that’s that. You can still enjoy and appreciate it, just know its roots are in dollars and not equality.

As for straight people showing up at Pride, well, that’s also complicated. Over the years I’ve noted many (many, many, many many) more straight folks using Pride as another reason to party. Like, you’ve already appropriated St. Patrick’s Day and Cinco de Mayo and SantaCon. Can’t we have this one thing? While I always encourage straight allies to openly support LGBTQ causes (particularly with their voices and their dollars), perhaps less taking up physical space at Pride would be nice. I really don’t need to look over and see straight couples making out in the middle of the Dyke March. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, just read the room straight people. Read the room.

While I tend to be a crowd adverse person (especially since the pandemic, hello low-key agoraphobia), I have always loved looking out during Pride and seeing the absolute sea of LGBTQ people. Many of us have searched so long and so hard to find our chosen families, to see ourselves en masse matters. And I love to see it all, from the go-go dancers in short-shorts to the BDSM crowd in their leather and the lady who always wears tassels and propellers her boobs the entire march. And the families. And the political activists. And the gays just trying to hook up. And the lesbian couples who U-Hauled too fast. And the newbies. And the elders. Yes to all of that.

Because that’s the glory of Pride, at least for me. Yes, it absolutely started as a riot. Yes, it should always be political. Yes, it should continue to be a statement of beauty and diversity of LGBTQ existence. The truth is our work is far from over. The Equality Act is stalled in the Senate. Trans rights are being assaulted every single day in state legislatures across this country. Yet we can fight and dance and sip cocktails and demand out civil rights all at the same time because we contain multitudes.

The thing about being LGBTQ in America is that we emphatically aren’t all the same. And that’s the point. But the vast majority of us likely have all been told (by people we love, strangers, and/or society) that we don’t matter. That we are somehow bad or wrong or weird or undeserving. Pride should always continue to be a repudiation of that. Be yourself. Be proud of yourself. Because still so much of society would rather we simply not. This year celebrate how you want because that’s what Pride should be about.

And, if the straights really want to help, maybe they can pony up the cash for those disgusting $50 cocktails for all their queer friends. Now that’s allyship I can get behind. (And, you know, calling your Senators and telling them to pass the Equality Act already.) Happy (almost pride) Monday, kittens.

Friday, May 28, 2021

My Weekend Crush

Sinead O’Connor exists among the most vindicated people in pop culture history. Reading the fascinating New York Times profile of Sinead from earlier this month I was reminded of why I have always loved her as an artist. She is unabashedly herself. And she knows what she wants, even if what she wants has changed through the years. May we all change and grow and embrace those changes and take no shit and live how we want to fucking live. Like, yeah, buy uncomfortable chairs if you don’t want guests to stay long. And, yeah, the Catholic Church has truly been a real enemy over the centuries and no one should be afraid to say that. And, yeah, Sinead O’Connor still has one of the most complexly beautiful voices and refreshingly righteous attitudes in all of music. And, yeah, I hope through everything she is happy. At least, if nothing else, she remains unapologetically herself. (Like, peep her posts in the profile comments section, which are just so wonderfully human.) Nothing compares to her, always and forever. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 27, 2021

Drink Your Milkshake

Fuck. And. YES! The trailer for “Gunpoweder Milkshake,” the movie I plan to watch no matter what because HELLO, is finally out. I don’t think I need to say much more than Lena Headey, Karen Gillan, Angela Bassett, Michelle Yeoh and Carla Gugino. The trailer makes it out to be a bit like if the Birds of Prey decided to let their inner John Wicks out while trying to Kill Bill. Heck, if this wasn’t coming to Netflix in July I’d happily go see this in an actual real theater with other humans. Yeah, that’s how much I am definitely watching “Gunpowder Milkshake.”

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Words & Such

Whew, well guess I was more tired from last weekend than I thought. We had (fully vaccinated) friends stay over for a few days, our first official inside visitors since the pandemic started 15 months ago. It was a test run to see if we remember how to socialize. And, we kind of did. Watching Cate Blanchett use alternately big words and possibly made up words is a reminder that socializing is hard for everyone. And while we may not all get to look like Cate in a suit, we can use words that defuffle our friends for everyone’s amusement.

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Eternal Flames

I know absolutely nothing about the Marvel Comics series “The Eternals.” I’ve never read them, but I sure hope they’re good because I’m rooting for “Eternals” to be something special. Newly minted “Nomadland” Oscar winner ChloĂ© Zhao’s first foray into big budget blockbusters, it’s about a race of immortals and stars Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek and Gemma Chan. So, you know, sold. Again, I have no idea if this will be great or even good. But I do like seeing Angelina wiled a sword (mystical as it appears) again. Action Jolie is, admittedly, a favorite. So, thoughts? Anyone read the comics? Are we in for anything even remotely gay, because it looks like these immortals are super straight. But a gal can keep dreaming.

Monday, May 24, 2021

Music Monday: Girls5Eva Edition

Remember when I told you “Girls5Eva” is great ans you should watch and then you should continue to watch through the credits because of the amazing original songs during the end credits of each episode? Well here is Sara Bareilles singing “I'm Afraid (Dawn's Song Of Fears)”/Your New Favorite Song.

Friday, May 21, 2021

My Weekend Crush

Last Friday I got a press release about Gillian Anderson joining a new TV show and they attached this head shot and I literally could not work properly the rest of the day. Like, HOW RUDE? What gave you the right? How is anyone supposed to get any work done after seeing that? Anyway, so obviously I am showing it to you. Not to be cruel, but because it is Friday and you deserve to slow down and reward yourself after a long week working through late stage capitalism. So if Gillian Anderson’s flawless face isn’t enough to make you appreciate what really matters, nothing will. Work, as always, is way overrated anyway. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Gender Fuck Thursday: Lady Killer Edition

Look, I could watch Blake Lively make a martini in a tuxedo for basically ever. So, naturally, I will totally watch her play a 1950s housewife who is secretly a contract killer. Blake will star and produce and Diablo Cody will write the film adaptation of the Dark Horse comic by the same name. You’ll remember Diablo from “Juno” and the still underrated “Jennifer’s Body.” I have not read any of “Lady Killer,” but I’m all for housewives becoming deadly assassins – for our entertainment. Also, it’s a good excuse to post Blake Lively making a martini in a tuxedo.

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

90sGirlsGroups5Eva

If you are a product of the 90s like me, you should turn on Peacock right now and find the show “Girls5Eva.” The Peacock series is a pitch perfect (See what I did there? I’m so sorry, I’m tired.) send-up of the all-too-often superficial girl power of so many of mass-produced female acts of that day.

The series stars Sara Bareilles, Busy Philipps, Renée Elise Goldsberry and Paula Pell as ex-members of the girl group Girls5Eva. You know the sort, groups formed from an open call at an inland Florida strip mall. This show harmonizes silly fun and pointed smarts while satirizing the co-opted feminine empowerment of the era. Plus, holy shit, their songs are amazing. I mean it, one of the great joys of the series is the new song that plays over the end credits each episode.

We inhaled this series in two nights, only because we made ourselves stop half way through to make the season last longer. Plus, it’s got The Gay. Real-life lesbian comic and longtime “Saturday Night Live” writer Pell plays Gloria, the group’s closeted/unrealized lesbian. As adult Gloria her performance is somehow both comedically over-the-top yet utterly relatable, which is no small feat. Like, instead of just laughing at her romantic mishaps, I’m genuinely rooting for Gloria to find the happiness she deserves.

My only criticism, which I hope and think might be a temporary one, is that the show somehow decided to [Spoler Alert: Key plot point ahead and all that, jump ahead to the last paragraph] kill off the one Asian members of the group, Ashley (played briefly and in hologram by Ashley Park). But I think/hope that infinity pool accident was just a long-con ruse, right?

Right, have I convinced you to watch this show yet? Because if you still love all the sugary delicious girl pop of the 90s, while abhorring the messages all the mandatory baring of midriffs and underage exploitation of the time this show was written just for you. I mentioned my Fake TV/Film Wife Tina Fey produced this too, right? Anyway, *sings at an unnecessarily high note while holding an imaginary earpiece* watch.

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Ellen's Next Chapter?

I thought at first I’d have a lot to say about Ellen’s announcement she’s ending her daytime talkshow with this its upcoming 19th season. But then a lot of smart women said a lot of smart stuff already. So I’ll keep it short-ish. My feelings about Ellen are, inevitably, tinged with nostalgia. But her career is a reminder that if our heroes don’t evolve along with us, we’re under no obligation to keep actively worshipping them. I’m not an Ellen hater per se. I recognize the incalculable good she did by coming out and mainstreaming acceptance of LGBTQ people. None of that should be forgotten. She helped change the world.

But, we’re all human. And good humans change because the world keeps changing and we should too. Ellen continued to believe her brand of non-nuanced niceness is the answer. She had made unquestioning kindness her brand. But just being nice won’t fix people who believe trans people should not be allowed to exist freely. And just being nice isn’t going to cause white supremacists to change suddenly their hearts. (Not to mention the reports of Ellen’s perhaps less than niceness in real life, and her show’s terribly toxic workplace. Weaponizing niceness to become obscenely rich and wrap oneself in unimaginable privilege while doing seemingly little to help those most currently vulnerable is, uh, not a good look.)

Still, like I was saying, we’re all human. We needed Ellen, and she came through for us at a time when only a handful of celebrities were actively out. She was the lesbian next-door, safe and non-threatening. Her likability and perceived kindness were ridiculously good PR for the mainstreaming of (let’s be honest, white-) gay acceptance back in the late ‘90s. And still she suffered for it, taking a few years to find her way back out of the wilderness after her sitcom got unceremoniously cancelled. Her return to and domination of an industry that once chewed her up and spit her out took courage and strength.

We all have struggles, and hopefully we all learn and continue to expand our minds and our hearts as we get older. That’s the whole wiser part, right? Heroes are only human too, and sometimes they might forget to look back and learn from their own struggles. Sometimes they continue to do the same thing that first made them revolutionary, but now just makes them rich. Then, yeah, it’s probably time to close that particular chapter.

But I truly hope Ellen has another chapter in her, one where her niceness (and wealth it helped her accumulate) can be used to continue the legacy she has already left of opening doors. True kindness is showing the most kindness to those who have experienced the least – not those who have gotten plenty already.

Well, shit, seems like I had at least a little to say anyway. Our icons are always complicated. The best take every opportunity to add to their legacies. I sincerely hope Ellen does just that.

Monday, May 17, 2021

Music Monday: Country Roads Edition

So I watched the first episode of “Clarice,” and have not watched more – despite being initially excited to see Clarice Starling return to my screen. The grim yet perdicatbale nature of the first episode, plus its hard lean into the era’s sexism (not like we don’t have sexism now, but you know) made me less excited. Like, how many times do we have to watch capable women prove themselves? (But, also, hi Dyson.) Like, maybe you can watch too many Murder Shows? But I really, really like the version of “Take Me Home, Country Roads” that Brandi Carlile recorded for the show. Like a lot a lot. Like give me all the haunting covers of formerly cheerful songs sung by one of the best live performers out there who also happens to be super, duper gay. And, who knows, maybe you all will tell me I should get over my misgivings with “Clarice” and give it another shot. Like, obviously, I still love a good Murder Show so… Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, May 14, 2021

My Weekend Crush

Like if you didn’t have even a little crush on Clea DuVall as Graham are you even a gay lady? (Kidding, of course, different strokes for different queers and all that). But, seriously, as a wee lesbian figuring her shit out in the late 90s, Clea was CLEA. “The Faculty,” “Girl, Interrupted” and of course “But I’m a Cheerleader.” Honestly I think so many queer women loved Clea from the start because they knew, just knew, she was one of us. Even if you were still fine-tuning your gaydar, she set off the alarm bells. So it’s been immensely satisfying to see her both embrace her queerness, continue her acting career and become a talented and successful writer-director. Say what you will about the coming out plot of “Happiest Season,” but it was a skillful rom-com that makes lesbian storylines accessible to a wider audience. So naturally, I’m thrilled to see Clea has teamed with Tegan & Sara to adapt their memoir “High School” into a TV series for Amazon’s IMDbTV. For real, how gay is that - in the best way possible? Also little Baby Dyke Snarker would have had a heart attack if she knew Graham would some day show up at award shows wearing tuxedos and looking like this. It gets better, indeed. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Gender Fuck Thursday: Rainbow Plaza

Sometimes you just need to look at some pictures of Aubrey Plaza in a suit. Like a lot of suits. Like a lot of suits in a lot of colors. Like a lot of suits in rainbow colors. Like, all of the pictures.

And, yes, I know she announced last week that she got married to her longtime boyfriend. But, you know, a gal can still look.

There, now isn’t that better?