Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Everything Everywhere All At Oscar

Now that we’ve had a week to digest the Oscars news, I have been on a mission to watch all of the best picture nominees this year. I’m pretty sure I haven’t watched every single best picture nominee since they switched to having 10 films in the category over a decade ago. But this year is doable because I’ve already seen 9 out of the 10 — though the 2+-hour German war movie I have left to watch might be a slog. Speaking of which, *long whistle*, this year’s nominated movies are LONG. Like very, very long like 8 out of 10 are 2+ hours. Like if you watched them all back-to-back-to-back it would take 23 hours and 50 minutes. The average run time is 2 hours and 23 minutes. “Avatar: Way of Water” is of course the longest at 3 hours and 12 minutes. But, like, did “Top Gun: Maverick” need to be 2 hours and 11 minutes long? Yeahhhh. And we definitely did not need the 2 hour and 39 minute runtime for that assault on the senses that was the “Elvis” whatever that was. But, of course, the shortest nominated film this year? Yeah, it’s “Women Talking.” You see, this is Hollywood after all. (It clocked in at a very respectable 1 hour and 44 minutes).

This year had its share of surprises and snubs (like, hello, “Blonde,” what?) But I am going to savor all of the love for “Everything Everywhere All At Once.” Hands down this movie with its dildo swordfights, kinetic game of buttplug keepaway, emotionally complex rocks and hot dog fingers was my favorite movie of the year, if not of the last several years. EEAAO made me laugh and cry and just feel more than almost anything I’ve watched in a while. So I am beyond thrilled for all of its 11 nominations and that its entire principal cast got rightfully recognized (especially the sublime Stephnie Hsu, who has wrongly been left off of some other awards nominations this year but was thankfully not forgotten because Jobu Tupaki will not be denied).

And can we talk for a second about all this Asian Excellence? Like, be still my little gaysian heart. Four Asian acting nominees. FOUR. Michelle Yeoh. Stephanie Hsu. Ke Huy Quan, who happens to be one of the very first Asian faces I ever saw in mainstream entertainment. Hong Chau for “The Whale.”(In case you are curious, the previous record was in 2020 when “Minari” got two acting nods and Riz Ahmed was also nominated for “The Sound of Metal.”) Michelle Yeoh being the first woman who identifies as Asian to be nominated for Best Actress. (Merle Oberon was nominated in 1935, but she hid her background and passed as white.) And, again, can we talk about Stephanie Hsu? Like, I still vividly remember her Secret Deodorant commercial from just a few years ago. And now, a much deserved Oscar nomination.

Anyway, besides being forever salty about Ana De Armas and/or Andrea Riseborough (!?!) getting Viola Davis’s nomination, I’m going to watch and root root root for the movie about healing the pain of generational trauma and finding happiness through loving one’s lesbian daughter to take home all the awards. And, as much as I love Cate Blanchett, give that naked golden man to Michelle this year please. Lydia Tar already has an EGOT anyway, amirite?

Monday, January 30, 2023

Music Monday: It Gets Gaylor

Look, I’m neither a hardcore Swiftie or Gaylor Truther. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy Taylor Swift’s music. (Like how is “Anti-Hero” such an instant, inescapable earworm bop? How?) Now, with the release of “Lavender Haze,” I’m definitely on Team Raised Eyebrow. Like, she knows what she’s doing. Her dropping of loaded Easter Eggs is well documented. So she’s either the best/most supportive ally who likes to flirt with her queer friends or sorta kinda a tiny bit fruity herself, right? Because Taylor cast trans actor/model Laith Ashley as her extremely handsome love interest in her “Lavender Haze” music video. And about that title. Like every queer person knows about lavender (like we’ll happily Menace any homophobes). And then to give such stellar trans representation (shirtless in bed, caressing and canoodling — if only there was a kiss, too). Anyway, I promise I won’t get Zapruder film-level into the whole Gaylor thing. But, um, with content like this isn’t it pretty to think so? Happy Monday, all.

Friday, January 27, 2023

My Weekend (Tibette Is Endgame) Crush

We may have (for real this time) watched the very last episode ever of “The L Word.” Or at least the last one until in 20 years they decide it’s time for another revival, like a lesbian “80 for Brady” or something, but with actually likable sportsball stars because they’ll all be lesbians. (But who knows, Showtime might give us another season of fighting, fucking, crying, drinking - we shall see.) The series remains, true to its continual form, uneven and often frustrating. In between that we’d catch glimpses of what has made us watch this show from the start. That look — however imperfect, frustrating, over glamourize and under inclusive as it was — into the daily lives and loves and lots and lots of drama of contemporary queer women. We watched because we saw ourselves, or perhaps what we aspired to, in this tight-knit group of queer female friends. And we watched because it was all we had as the very first show just about us. And, well, you just never forget your first. So I’m just going to say congrats to TiBette Nation, this whole season was a culmination of their long-dreamed of endgame. It’s taken us almost 20 years. But we all got to see the longest-running lesbian couple on American TV finally get legally married (I mean, I’m sure Alice’s internet ordination was legit, right?). And in the presence of White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and Ilene Chaiken, no less. I could get into specific plot points and key details (like, not sure about Tina’s suit or the tailoring on Bette’s pants), but really in the end it was the vibe we came for and the characters we loved that kept us here. As more and more shows feature inclusive queer female characters, the truth is “The L Word” is just not as essential anymore. (Though maybe stop canceling all these LGBTQ+ shows, networks. K, thanks.) But if there is another season, yep, imma watch it. Because, well, it’s “The L Word.” Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Gender Fuck Thursday: Award-Winning Suits

While going down the rabbit hole of Cate Blanchett flirting with hot women at award shows, I noticed something rather great about the Critics Choice Awards. This is the award show that should probably take the Golden Globes's place in that it brings TV and movie stars together, plies them with alcohol and lets them loose in front of the camera - but without the much-publicized scandals and racism so far. Anyway, what I noticed is that many more women and non-cis men wore suits to the ceremony. And, well, you know my feelings about everyone who is not a cis dude — particularly cis het white dudes — wearing suits. Namely, that I love it and demand more. So here’s a little taste of all the suit-wearing women, non-binary and other folx who suited up for the Critics Choice. Eat that, Golden Globes.

Niecy Nash-Betts & Jessica Betts

Jessica and Niecy are, hands down, among the best dressed — if not The Best Dressed — couple at every award show they attend. Like, who does Jessica’s tailoring, because *low whistle*

D'Arcy Carden

She did this for the ALOTO gays and we’re so thankful to her for it.

Nina Hoss

Look, if I played Cate Blanchett’s wife in a movie I’d only ever walk around in tuxedos afterward as well. Because, you know, fancy.

Bre-Z & Samantha Logan

I didn’t know these former “All-American” co-stars before they showed up in suits together but I sure do now — particularly Bre-Z. Hello.

Amber Ruffin

Are those little crystal geckos on her suit?

Britt Lower

I’m warming up to suits with capes. Like I feel like I could enter my suits-with-capes era any day now. (Kidding, I legit only wear soft pants 95% of my days now.)

Frankie Corio & Charlotte Wells

You should see “Aftersun,” a beautiful, unhurried, melancholic coming of age story with built-in queerness, and not just because its young star Frankie and debut writer-director Charlotte wore suits to the award show together.

Fortune Feimster & Jacquelyn Smith

Not to be outdone by Niecy and Jessica, Fortune and Jacquelyn also cleaned up real nice for the red carpet. Real nice.

Ayo Edebiri

I haven’t watched “The Bear,” but if it’s as interesting as this outfit maybe I should. I mean, the knee socks alone!

Sarah Polley

This suit is so relatable, I’m pretty sure I’ve worn almost the same thing to an awards ceremony before.

Christina Applegate

Now that’s how you swagger into an award show when you’re immunocompromised — suit, cane, Docs, mask.

Natasha Lyonne, Milly Alcock & Emma D'Arcy

Fine, this was at the Golden Globes, but Emma describing their outfit as “child piano prodigy, and maybe the recital’s not going well” was perfect. No notes.

Ke Huy Quan & Echo Quan

As long as we’re going to bring up the Globes, Ke’s wife wore this tuxedo and that’s a yes in very parallel universe imaginable.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

The Great Plaza

I can’t think of the last time I liked an entire episode of “Saturday Night Live” from start to finish. But thanks to the delightfully weird energy of host Aubrey Plaza, last weekend was the weekend. I watched the first new SNL of the new year because I’m still a Riley stan, but with admittedly low expectations. But thanks to Aubrey’s hosting and some better writing, I enjoyed the whole thing from first skit to last. And I think that’s because having a more diverse and inclusive cast and writers room matters. The new cast now includes the first non-binary cast member in the show’s history in comic Molly Kearney joined by out LGBTQ+ castmates Bowen Yang and Punkie Johnson. To wit, Aubrey's episode was gay as hell, but not in a way that necessarily makes fun of LGBTQ+ people to punch down. Instead, one of the skits was specifically about how ridiculous homophobia is — particularly the strain of “no homo” bro culture. I mean, yeah, that was something that even a decade ago I don’t think you would have seen on America’s premiere sketch comedy show. This is a show where for decades having two straight actors kiss was a guaranteed laugh line. So, you know, change is good. So here’s a look at the gayest sketches from last weekend’s show. Aubrey, who is out and bi, of course makes them all gay. But that’s besides the point.

Two butch Arizona lesbians skypeople posing as Na’vi in basketball shorts and tanks? Look, if I can invest nearly three hours of my life watching a bunch of straight elongated Smurfs, the rest of the world can enjoy some blue Hundred-Footers from the American Southwest for a change. Amiright?

We all know cis gay boy circuit party culture is the ripest of LGBTQ+ cultures for parody. And we all know gay men really do love unhinged plastic women. Those are just facts, hunty.

And, finally, even the preview for last week’s episode were super gay what with Aubrey and Chloe Fineman making out because, honestly, everyone just wants to watch Aubrey Plaza make out with women. That’s another fact, you lil homos.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

Cate The Flirt

Cate Blanchett will likely receive her eight Academy Award nomination later this morning. Which is great for us because that means more Cate Blanchett at award shows. Sure, she skipped the Golden Globes. But she appeared to have an absolute blast at the recent Critics Choice Awards flirting with every gorgeous woman there. Think I’m kidding? I certainly am not.

Here’s Cate cozying up to Michelle Yeoh, which, I mean always shoot your shot.

Here’s Cate auditioning to play Jennifer Coolidge’s long-lost younger sister who now together must solve the mystery of their biological mother’s disappearance, but in a funny way.
Here’s Cate realizing Julia Garner is way too young for her to be seen with but doing it anyway because of lingering Therese Belivet feelings.
Here’s Cate shooting her shot with Viola Davis at the Palm Springs International Film Awards because this much flirting can’t be contained to one award show.
Here’s Cate marking Jamie Lee Curtis as her property, I’m assuming.
Here’s Jamie Lee responding entirely appropriately to being in the presence of The Blanchett Bounty. Ahem,
In conclusion, may we all channel this woman in the background and be sure to capture every woman Cate flirts with all award season long.
I, for one, cannot wait for the Oscar-caliber flirting to commence.

Monday, January 23, 2023

Music Monday: Choose Sara Edition

Kittens, I’ve been having a tough January. And that’s following an also tough December/November. Packing all those holidays so close together like that is…whew. But I am working on being OK and determined not to sour on marriage and and love and all that other hearts and rainbows shit. So as some exposure therapy here is one of my favorite Sara Bareilles videos. Yes, I know, I’ve been on bit of a Sara Bareilles tear of late. (She is also great in "Girls5Eva," in case I haven't hinted enough that you should watch yet.) She’s just…so good. And this video is so good, and so sweet and so gay. I hope both these couples are still together, but especially the lesbians. Gotta root for the home team. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, January 20, 2023

My Weekend (Casting) Crush

More like “Only Meryls in the Building,” amirite? So the delightful little murder show with the most unlikely of cross-generational appeal just got even more appealing by adding none other than Meryl Streep herself. The 21-time Oscar nominee is joining Steve Martin, Martin Short and Selena Gomez and the cast of the most amusing New York murder-mystery series for its third season. I don’t know who she’ll be playing. (Maybe one of Bunny’s long-lost family members? A maid?) But I just know when Meryl straps on the silly we’re all in for a treat. And, last season, this show also gave us queer ladies something to smile about thanks to the addition of real-life Shane/Cara Delevingne and Selena’s character being much more fluid on the Kinsey Scale than previously revealed. So, bring on the Meryl (and Paul Rudd, he’s perfectly lovely too I suppose). Like, this show also has Tina Fey, too. Is there such thing as too much of a good thing? Never! Cate Blanchett for Season 4! Happy weekend, all.

p.s. Still no screener, so enjoy The L this weekend, kittens. I’ll try to have a review next week instead.

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Pre-L Interruptus

Well, well, well. Showtime has not posted the screener for the finale (the real finale this time, not the one I made up in my head). And they’ve not posted pictures of the finale yet either. But if they do either today, I will bring you a Pre-L of sorts as soon as I can. Until then, without going into specific spoilers, what do you want to have happen in this the possibly last episode of The L Word? Wedding bells? Lots of shagging? Questionable relationships with exes, real and non-corporeal? Or maybe just Carmen? A gal can dream. Just no waterfalls and no pools perhaps.

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Wild At Heart

Oh shit, it’s almost time to go back to the wilderness. The first trailer for the second season of “Yellowjackets” gives us little answers, and lots of split-second what the hell was that instead. I tried pausing, but I don’t see any shots of Adult Van/Lauren Ambrose (though teen Van and her miraculously healed scar is visible a couple times). So, will we finally find out more about the Forest Cult, and who exactly they ate? Well, I for one can’t wait to chow down on another season.

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Tank Top Tuesday: Ally Edition

So, obviously, I don’t feature the fellas that much on Surrenders for obvious lesbian reasons. But when a good guy comes along who happens to be wearing a tank top (I mean it is Tuesday) while talking lovingly about his lesbian mom? Well, I think we all know where this is going. Plus, the bi/pan readers of Ye Olde Blogge also need some content. So, please enjoy some Dave Bautista, an actor I’ve liked generally but now will like loyally, talking about covering up his Manny Pacquiao tattoo because the boxing legend turned out to be an enormous homophobe, among other things. So good on Dave, his lesbian mom and beefy dude lovers in general. Now that’s what I call a real ally. And, I can guarantee you, our ally can beat up your homophobe no problem.

Monday, January 16, 2023

Music Monday: Sara & Brandi Edition

I’ve wanted to go to Brandi Carlile’s annual Girls Just Wanna Weekend event since she started them back in 2018. I made it a goal last year to get tickets to the music festival at some point in the near future. The all-inclusive Mexican getaways always seemed like a more music-oriented, less party hardy Dinah Shore. But their hefty price tag and now lack of a dedicated traveling companion have put a pause on those plans for now. But at least we can enjoy this year’s fruits from afar, like this duet between Brandi and Sara Bareillis on her beautiful “She Used to be Mine.” This song stirs up such fierce emotions each time I hear it, and in Sara and Brandi’s hands it’s nothing short of a masterpiece. I listened to it half a dozen times in a row, which let me warn you in advance will eventually make you sob in your living room. Or maybe just me. Life is what happens when we’re making other plans. But, no matter how late, there’s still time to rewrite an ending or two for all of us. Happy Monday, kittens.

Friday, January 13, 2023

My Weekend Crush

Obviously, I’ve always loved Kate Winslet. But now that we’re both entering the later stages of our forties, I somehow love her even more. As you all unfortunately know, I’ve had some major life bullshit happen in the past year. But I’m trying my best not to feel defeated. Because Kate is right. There’s a power in the IDGAFness of your later 40s. And I’m doing all I can to embrace it, this year, just like Kate. Happy weekend, all

Thursday, January 12, 2023

Pre-L: Quiet Before the Storm (S3E9)

Well, seems this show about a letter has learned its lesson from Dana and will no longer kill off even moderately liked characters. (No comment on Jenny Schecter.) So Rosie O’Donnell isn’t dead, not on screen or in real life, and last week wasn’t the finale, not on screen or in real life. Apologies again for last week’s confusion, I blame it on post-holiday malaise and/or generalized life bullshit. This week’s episode starts with an unmistakable troll, showing us a hospital corridor and giving us all a tad of PTSD in the process. I see what you did there, show. Thank the Sapphic gods they didn’t play “You Are My Sunshine” over the scene, too. But there’s still one episode after this, so no non-death kudos just yet. But at least Bette & Tina are alive and well.

As always, MASSIVE SPOILERS AHEAD. BIG. HUUUGE. So if you don’t want to know, don’t scroll. But you know you want to know. That’s why you’re here.

1. Honestly, I would watch a whole show about a middle-aged lesbian couple that takes in a stray gay youth who then becomes their House Boi. Seriously, get on that whatever streamer won’t cancel shows with lesbian content after one season.

2. Me, when I’m eating my healthy New Year’s resolution meals.
3. TiBette Supermoms is also a show I’d watch, like “The Fosters” but less about the annoying teenagers.
4. I get it, Shane. I also bought a pinky ring over the holidays thinking it would fix my whole life.
5. Alice remains a relatable queen, showing friends 200 photos of her cat with no plans of ever stopping.
6. Isn’t it crazy it took this many seasons to get a couple where both women had haircuts like this?
7. Ugh, can we just skip through the Alice being canceled storyline? After Lydia Tar, is there really anything left to say on the matter?
8. Modern queer relationships are 90% just sending each other TikToks, often while in the same room together snuggling.
9. Fine, Bisexual Evel Knievel is also a show I’d watch. Look, I’d watch a lot of shows.
10. First the candy in her purse. Then these glasses. Is Bette entering her Meemaw Era?
11. Classic Alice hijinks is classic.
12. Oh, Angie. Baby girl. No, baby girl. No.
13. Lesbian couples in their PJs binging “Grey’s Anatomy” is the representation we need and deserve.
14. End of game.
15. Oh, Tess. Baby girl. Also, sadly, no.
16. I mean, we all knew this was going to happen. Luckily we still love a woman in a uniform.
Scrap Cap:
I mean, there were literal and figurative fireworks, so how could I not?

Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Return to Golden Hour

So, yeah, the Golden Globes were on a random Tuesday and it felt weird watching them because, well, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association sucks and we all know that. But, well, I love a glitzy event and I REALLY love Everything Everywhere All At Once (duh). And, you know, it’s always fun to see TV People hobnob with Movie People – though the biggest groan-inducing repeat gag (literally and figuratively) of the night everyone saying “Hi!” to Brad Pitt. Honestly, if they’d just let Jennifer Coolidge fill the three and a half hours with her kooky stories while handing out the awards to all the POC who deserve it I would have been just as happy with the telecast.

Admittedly, because they had to, the HFPA did considerably better this year with inclusion both on stage, behind the scenes and among its winners. And, it was pretty gay, too. From host Jerrod Carmichael to Jennifer Coolidge stealing the show, twice. All of the excellence from winners like Quinta Brunson and Michelle Yeoh and Angela Bassett is a reminder that while talent is everywhere, opportunity is not. When we allow the two to come together, everyone – especially the viewer –benefits.

Because this was a somewhat more muted affair (because of its literal cancelation last year), there wasn’t much SGALGG. So here are just some of the most memorable bits – in no particular order because the show was three and a half hours long. That’s a lot to remember.

This is the start of the best later-in-life coming out lesbian rom-com in history.

This whole cast makes me smile and also – smash. Respectfully, because they’re educators, but definitely smash. (What? Like you don't have a thing for teachers, too.)
I’m mainly happy for the success of “House of the Dragon” because it means Emma D’Arcy can show up at award shows dressed like this.
This whole cast makes me smile, and also – smash. Sorry, not you Ke Huy Quan – but your Short Round was one of the first Asian character I saw I saw on screen growing up. So thank you for that.
Meg Stalter and Hannah Einbinder together is like seeing the members of a high school gay-straight alliance grow up and do well for themselves.
Angela Bassett and Rihanna together, I don’t have anything clever to say that’s just like seeing royalty or something (but not real royalty, because those Windsors as kinda the worst).
It’s still so perplexing to me that Natasha Lyonne isn’t gay. Like, still!
Niecy Nash and her wife Jessica Betts are always one of the very best dressed couples on the red carpet. Period.
Oh, Lydia Tar won. But didn’t attend. So in case you forgot what she looks like, here’s a current picture of Cate Blanchett. You’re welcome.