Oct 10, 2007

Trashy, addictive TV, part 2

Back in school, in my TV class, I wrote a paper on Nip/Tuck. The main point of it was that while subtlety is all well and good, melodrama has its place. And it's a fun place. Plus, playing things at a fever pitch sometimes means you can get away with more.

If you're not chasing the cocktail of Gossip Girl's NY porn + money + beautiful pampered people doing delicious things with a shot of Dirty Sexy Money, then you don't deserve to drink the melodrama Koolaid at all.

Why bother underplaying when you can use real live lions as a punchline? Why not go all the way with the Paris Hilton caricature? ODing, naughty priests and trannies (who are definitiely *not* hookers) in the pilot? BRING IT!

Everyone here knows they're ridiculous and they seem to be loving it.

Also, Peter Krause is possibly the least appreciated TV actor around. Not even a Globe for Sports Night or Six Feet Under.

Twintuition! Is Samaire awesome at playing vapid and limited because she is so vapid and limited herself? How on earth did fugly Bryce Dallas Howard snag hottie Seth Gabel?

As cheesily fun as the show is, it sometimes veers from melodrama to actual drama. With great actors like this, it can work. Donald Sutherland walked that razor's edge last week and Baldwin is balancing this week. [Jill Clayburgh is her usual awesome self.]

"I don't need twintuition to see you googling her ass!" "Don't you mean ogling?"

Complementary Bulgari watches as party favors? God, it's such a masturbatory aspirational fantasy and I love it.

It took me forever to place Karen's hubby Freddie as the villainous frat boy from Van Wilder. He looks different without dog semen in his mouth. Insert obvious horny comment here. I do love those All-American looks -- young, dumb and...well, you know.

That's the thing about GG and DSM - I went to a private high school, but in the South. A college with beautiful, wealthy people. But I'm not a scion or a junior. I wasn't in a frat.

So it all seems familiar yet completely foreign to me. Which is why I can't stop watching. I've been near there, but not there there. Sure, I've stayed at the Palace, but never went to Le Cirque 2000. Add some music, some flashy editing and a few bon mots that I don't forget that night in a drunken haze -- and turn the volume up. Almost as enjoyable to watch as it is to (nearly) live. Which I do enjoy. I'll just have to take detailed notes and turn it all into a fabulous roman a clef or soap later.

[Seriously, GG has convinced me that if I *had* been at more of the lakehouse parties in high school doing the observational writerly thing, I'd have such sellable material by now.]

On that note: assuming their kitchen staff gets "unexcused," Eleven is becoming my lounge of choice in WeHo. A fantastic decor - it's owned by either Sid or Marty Kroft - hot waiters that can make drinks as well as they can show off their abs. Plus, insanely good onion rings. Blue cheese dressing, greasy yet light and flaky. And possibly the most perfectly sweet/sour onions this side of Vidalia. I think I went there at least 3 times the week they opened to pig out on them (and booze + boys, duh.) They're having happy hour from 4-8 with 2 for 1 drinks and a cheapo bar menu. There's also the possibility of chatting up the crowd, since it's a nice atmosphere. A lounge is just for that. Who knows, you may just meet someone with a famous last name. Not that I did or anything. Or am wanting them to call me.

trashily addictive-y television

I threatened you on Facebook and, yeah, it's on. GG, episode 4, live-ish (at the ads) blog below. [And I said method liveblogging, so there was at least one Martini before the start]:

9:20 p.m. -- A Breakfast at Tiffany's dream sequence? Awesome. The wistfulness of Moon River gets me every time, but nice for it to be utilized for its darker underpinnings.

And yeah, we all saw S being incorporated into the photo shoot a mile away, but who cares. Plus, nearly 90% of the "inspiration" S gave was taken directly from ANTM.

I love how this show just drops you into the world ("It's NoLita, not Noshowers" "I hate Vera's models") and just expects you to catch up. Or feel totally like a lame outsider if you don't.

The outfits, the outfits, the outfits. So perfect -- the 40s inspired Waldorf designs? And then...weirdness. Like Chuck Bass dressed all Sean John. Huh? Or the fact that S is dressed hoochier than the rest of the supposedly refined and preppy characters half the time (denim cootershoots a few eps back!) and yet gets praised by B's mom for her taste.

9:33 PM -- Of all the ridiculous leaps of faith this show asks us to believe, the fact that the Humphrey's are "poor"-er (or inferior to) the UES-ers is the biggest one. Their kitchen alone costs more than my life. It's in Williamsburg! The trendiest place on earth. All the exposed brick! The pull-down garage door divider thing-y? Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous. WANT.

Point being, if Williamsburg = Silverlake, if I *had* bought property in the West Coast equivalent 3-4 years ago? I'd be able to be brunching in the Palace right now.

"5 boroughs, 5000 chances to get laid?" I know he's a sleazeball, but I admire him for being true to his nature and honest about who he is.

The Easton Ellis comparison is easy, but you could cut the homoerotic tension between Nate and the hippie dropout with a 24-karat knife. It's probably because Nate really does resemble Ian Somerhandler. A lot.

9:45 - Catfight! I *do* wonder how long they can go back-and-forth between the poles of the frenemies spectrum, but it's enjoyable while it lasts. Plus, super bonus points for staging one showdown during a field hockey match.

I know it helps that she's staring down at me from every other billboard in town, but Blake Lively's hair is insanely good. It's like a mane or something. A full, well-conditioned mane.

9:59: Wow, this show really *is* NY porn. And, it goes without saying, but I'm saying it anyway -- everything is made more interesting with Kristen Bell narrating. Just imagine your - or my - life with KB overdubbing even the most mundane things.

"Spotted this a.m. - HG hitting the drive-thru at McD's for some Monopoly action. We know he loves to play games, but will the food go to his thighs or win him a valuable prize?"

I Like to Watch over at Salon has basically said it, but I will again - you have to love the characters being fully committed to the bitchiness. I mean, they stay at the Palace (hey, I've been there! And shamelessly threw myself at the concierge. To no avail, since I was staying with my mom), which was a Leona Helmsley property. And I can totally picture anyone on the show pulling a her and leaving all their money to their dog out of spite.

Okay, I'm open to suggestions/comments from my tens - dozens, even! - of readers. Especially if we can create a signature drink for the show. You know you love me. XOXO, - HG