Thursday, May 20, 2010

What's a girl to do?

Two nights on Fox. And a study in contrasts. Like being torn between two lovers. Mr. Perfect who does everything right, and Mr. Wrong who you can’t quite figure out but keeps you coming back for more.

Mr. Perfect is, of course, Glee. They just keep giving me exactly what I want. First, there’s the show choir aspect. Love it. At my house, Glee isn’t a sing-along. It’s a full-scale-production-number-along. Then there are the characters which are crazy good (and in the case of Sue Slyvester, just plain cuh-ray-zee). What else is high school but a blend of grindingly oridinary and bigger than life? And Glee nails it. The plot twists are pure genius – you can see them coming from a mile away, and they still surprise you (Rachel’s birth mom, who else could it be? But, oh, mygod, it is!). Then an episode guest starring Neil Patrick Harris and directed by Joss Whedon. Get out of my head! If I was dating Glee, at this point I’d be seriously wondering how long Glee had been stalking me before we “met”.

Then last night was The Good Guys. What the Anton Fuqua is that? It is one crazy butt show that is making no effort to take its medication. I tuned in because it’s from the same guy who did Burn Notice, and it’s shot in Dallas. Which I had to wonder, how are they going to handle that one? BN is set in Miami where it’s beautiful beaches and beautiful bodies, and even the ratty parts of town are glazed with that gorgeous Florida sun. Dallas ain’t that. And boy, does The Good Guys just throw it right on out there in glowing, unaesthetic, living beige-on-taupe color. That’s Dallas all right. The fact that the burn-out cop is living in a Gulf Stream on the grounds of Fair Park is freaking on-the-nosey hilarious if you live here. And this show just has no shame in indulging in every 70s and 80s cop/private investigator show cliché. No shame whatsoever. There’s a little Starsky & Hutch, Simon & Simon, Barney Miller, Magnum PI, Miami Vice, Lethal Weapon, The Rockford Files and half a kitchen sink. It’s kind of like that person that you think is being ironic by wearing an A-Team t-shirt, but it turns out they just really, really like the A-Team. Love the A-Team. WORSHIP the A-Team. And I tried to resist. The tone was uneven. The characters aren’t quite there in development. The show could use about another 10-minutes in the oven. But, dang it. By the time they rolled out the muscle car rolled out, with AC/DC wailing in the background – hook, line, sinker. I been thunderstruck. It's so Mr. Wrong, but it feels so right.

Torn between two lovers, indeed. And much like in real life, Mr. Perfect, who has all the right moves, is probably gay. And Mr. Wrong says he’ll call ya, but he’ll be cancelled before the end of the summer. Those guys never stick around. But it never stops us from a little foolin’ around, does it?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Is anybody in there?

I’m finding myself with not much to think about here lately. Not much at all. Nothing to complain about (gasp). Nothing to ponder. Nothing to desire. Which, in my instance, ends up being not much to write about. I didn’t really even have much of a reaction to George Rekers and RentBoys R Us. [Other than, in the words of Yoda – do or do not. There is no try. But this does not a blog make.] Even my old reliables, celebrities, politicians and the fashion industry have left me thoughtless.

So . . . what? Since the premise of this blog is “things I think about,” and I’m not thinking, what? Maybe I’ve finally run out of thoughts. Could happen.

Not sure if it’s a phase. I’m gonna try to muscle through. Could be just the Spring Blues. Could be I’m bored, and therefore boring. Maybe something will happen. Otherwise, if I want to keep blogging, and really, I’m not sure what life would be without it, I’m going to have to find an external source. Take up fire walking or extreme eating or . . . what? I don’t know. I’ve really never experienced being quite this empty headed before. Thump my noggin and all you’d get would be a hollow sound. Good for watermelons. Not so good the old melon.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Poor, poor Butterfly

Okay, what I didn’t understand about Madame Butterfly was that it is essentially a lovely opera about the trafficking of a teenage girl to a foreign national for sexual purposes. Like a 15-year old girl. Which is what I said in the usher shack when I went to change out of my uniform after the show. I kind of got an uncomprehending look from the other ushers. They thought it was a great tragic romance, and were all much more offended by Spring Awakening.

Not to say that I was exactly offended by Butterfly. In a nutshell, a Victorian period naval officer stationed in Japan purchases a young girl to be his rent-a-wife for his tour of duty, knocks her up and then abandons her for a “real” wife from back home. The girl, who believes she is a real wife, waits for his return, but discovers the truth and commits suicide to save her son and have him raised by her faithless “husband” and the new bride. Yeah. He’s a catch. But you do have to take these things in historical context. At the turn of the 20th Century, a girl of fifteen would have been considered more or less an adult. And it is truly represented as a tragedy, not a how-to-manual. These are not role models. But the other side is that if this was Law & Order: SVU, Stabler would have been calling this guy a hump and sweating him in the box by the second act. And if B.F. Pinkerton looked cross-eyed at one of my nieces, I’d have been kicking his dress whites clad butt all over Okinawa. Okay. Maybe I was a little offended.

Not that it wasn’t a beautiful production, and very moving. When Butterfly tells her son to look at her so that some trace of her face may stay in his memory, I got seriously teary-eyed. I love a good cry. But it still ooked me out. Every time Pinkerton went on about how sweet and innocent Butterfly was, and how he just had to have her, I got just the tiniest bit more nauseated. I don’t think it changes the fact that it is a beautiful work of art. But I think the betrayal of poor Butterfly is just that much more monstrous when viewed with these 21st Century eyes.

TIME: Quotes of the Day