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  1. bobbyjoe

    S11.E07: From Farm to Runway

    I’m so ready for Snatch Game next week, because the challenges the last two episodes have bored the bejesus out of me. The queens are actually pretty interesting this season, even if they fight a lot, but c’mon, show, pick up the pace with the kinds of challenges we’re getting, cause lately they feel like snoozefests. Tonight’s felt like they were simply thinking “oh, umm, let’s, I dunno, maybe just do a Project Runway unconventional materials challenge, yeah, that’ll kill an episode;” and then they thought “wait, that’s not enough to fill ninety minutes, so throw in a line dance that doesn’t particularly feel at all consequential.” Thank god for Alyssa, but even her segment was basically just watching the queens do their usual walks out of costume which isn’t exactly riveting television. Alyssa’s humor is pretty much the only thing that kept my finger off the fast forward button. I wonder if the reason Untucked has played up soooooo much screaming and yelling his season is that the producers sense that the regular part of the show isn’t living up to as high an entertainment value as it usually is, and should be. Put a little more thought— and fun, for god’s sake— into the challenges, please, producers.
  2. bobbyjoe

    S04.E16: I Have a Date Tonight

    If the choice is between NuGreg and "nobody at all, she chooses herself," I'm going with "nobody at all". It's not that I don't like the actor who's playing Greg now, it's just that I agree with everyone who's saying that this season hasn't really made a good argument for why she should end up with Greg (and in fact has spent much of the time showing scenes that strongly suggest they definitely shouldn't end up together). If she ends up with Greg it's going to feel like that was the showrunners plan from season one but they haven't adjusted at the end to actually deal with what's happened the last few seasons. Weirdly, my fantasy scenario for the three date episode would have been that during the dates Rebecca meets somebody else (maybe she coincidentally keeps running into this same person in funny ways the night of each of the dates) and she realizes that the reason she can't decide between the other three is that while she loves each of them in her own way they also each lack something for her. The new person she's met could be someone who genuinely seems to the audience more fully in line with her, and the show could end with her starting to date this guy, optimistically, but leaving it open if even this will be the right person for her.
  3. bobbyjoe

    S17.E03: All the Rage

    See, this is why I’m relieved the show is back on Bravo and back with Magical Elves. I was really surprised when Nadine was eliminated tonight and I was really surprised when on the first episode of the new season Cavanagh went home. Why, I realized? Because the Lifetime/Bunim-Murray version of PR had me so conditioned to a dynamic where the meaner contestants, the trouble-makers and the “villains” always got to stay, no matter how bad their designs were, because the Lifetime version producers felt they were good drama. Pretty much the whole lazy formula over there got to be contestants saying mean things about each other, over and over and over and over and over and over again. (How refreshing also tonight there were several times when we saw contestants saying nice, encouraging things to each other... I thought “what is this show I’m watching?”) I can’t help but think that Nadine might even have been put in the top three tonight on the Lifetime PR. And everybody would be wondering “what the heck were the judges thinking” when what they were thinking was “keep the baddies, they’re easy drama.” So I’m sooooooo glad with episodes like tonight’s that we’re back to Bravo, where playing the villain doesn’t automatically save you, and where the focus of who wins and loses is more back to actual performance and fashion.
  4. bobbyjoe

    S7.E13 All the World's a Runway

    Ugh. Michelle becoming a two time winner is the perfect rancid cherry on top of the Bunim-Murray PR garbage sundae. No wonder they put this season on the shelf for two years; it’s like a gang of villains in an old western movie pulling one last fast one as everyone chases them out of town with pitchforks. Good riddance to PR on Lifetime, I’m cautiously optimistic from the evidence so far that the new Bravo version is at least trying to ditch some of Bunim-Murray’s worst impulses and re-energize the show.
  5. bobbyjoe

    S07.E12: Modern Families

    Anne being a judge made me wonder what celebrity didn’t show up so they had to grab her and make her a judge. Probably somebody from, I’m guessing, Modern Family? Whoever the no-show celebrity was, they got off lucky. ‘Cause that was a total garbage waste of 90 minutes. BTW, show, thanks for the reminder tonight that Michelle has been on not one, but two, seasons of All-Stars. Because she’s such a fan favorite.* * (a fan favorite in the sense that she has a producer or two in her pocket who are really big fans. The viewers, not so much, at least as far as I’ve seen, and certainly not enough to justify her returning more than other genuinely loved and liked contestants. Two All-Stars? Mmmmm hmmmm).
  6. bobbyjoe

    S07.E11: Nina Says Don't Cry Over Spilt Silk

    If Bravo and Magical Elves wanted to officially design an episode that would advertise why PR needs to leave Bunim-Murray and Lifetime immediately— even if it costs us Heidi and Tim— I’m not sure they could have done a better job than what we saw tonight. The editing of tonight’s show was so worn out and obvious that my husband and I both turned to each other literally eight minutes into the show and said “Anthony Ryan’s going home.” The organization of the show is so constantly, tediously exactly the same: A) here’s a shot of a contestant working on a dress B) here’s another contestant criticizing that dress C) repeat steps A & B over and over. And all of these finalists feel creatively spent and uninspired. Dimitri and Irina seem bored. Michelle doesn’t, but even without getting into her past personality, her work has been awful and insanely over-rated. Bidell is fine, I guess, but not exactly a dynamo of either exciting design or personality. It feels like every aspect of PR is so exhausted and dead right now that the only person who seemed to actually have a pulse tonight was the 95 year old. I’m just thinking that whatever Bravo does with PR when they get it back, it can’t be worse than this.
  7. bobbyjoe

    S07.E10: Climate Quick Change

    If you’re a woman who likes granny prints, horribly clashing colors, inexplicable combinations somehow simultaneously way too revealing and way too flowy, rain gear that doesn't even cover your head, styling that makes you look like the world’s most drab spinster schoolmarm, and bad shoes, then wow does Michelle ever have the look for you. Seriously, remember when PR judges used to question contestants about who is the woman they’re designing for? Who in the holy heck is Michelle’s woman? I’m starting to think JC Penney might have driven themselves into bankruptcy just so they didn’t have to offer a version of Michelle’s look. If so, thank you, JC Penney, thank you, thank you for your noble sacrifice.
  8. bobbyjoe

    S07.E09: All Inclusive

    The producer's fix is so in on Michelle-- falsely hyping even her objectively terrible looks to the point of absurdity and keeping her 'til the end if not maybe even the win-- that my only surprise is that when Alyssa had to add that where-did-that-come-from "thank you, Michelle, you're great" as Michelle left the runway she didn't also slip her a big envelope full of cash. ETA: I'm almost starting to suspect that every time Anne enters the workroom we'll soon hear the contestants angrily growl her name like Jerry spits out "Hello, Newman" on Seinfeld.
  9. bobbyjoe

    S07.E08: Penneys from Heaven

    They should have just owned the situation and renamed the episode “Penneys From Hell.” They could have had Ron Howard’s narrator voice from Arrested Development pop up now and then and contradict a lot of what happened. Like: ”Biddell, your look will be available on JC Penneys online!” Narrator: “It won’t.” [or] ”Michelle, your look is one of the best tonight!” Narrator: “It wasn’t.”
  10. bobbyjoe

    S04.E10: Super Queen Grand Finale

    If there was any doubt left that this whole season was completely phony and scripted, think about it: do you really think they just had an extra $100,000 lying around that Ru could give out on a whim? No way.
  11. bobbyjoe

    S07.E07: Pure Imagination

    The timeline is even weirder here: when they were showing the Broadway area, two of the shows that were playing (as per the marquees) were "It's Only a Play" and "Once." "Once" closed in January 2015, and "It's Only a Play" closed in March of 2015. So that must have been archival footage from even further back, which seems incredibly cheap and lazy of them to use since the show is actually located in NYC. They couldn't be bothered to even pop down to Broadway and take a more recent shot or two? On another note: I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that because Michelle is the producer's darling she could send someone down the runway in something like a burlap sack and the judges would all "oooooo" and "ahhhhhhhh" over how great it was, and, lo and behold, she came awfully close to doing just that here. And Isaac literally called it one of the best looks of the season. It's really disgusting. Willie Wonka is loaded with subjects and images you could have built a challenge around and the producers put absolutely no effort into that here. It could have been based around inspiration from the different types of Wonka candies from gobstoppers to lickable wallpaper to golden ticket chocolate to Violet's grape bubblegum. You could have built it around the different characters, or, heck, even the Oompa Loompas. You could have done anything to actually have a fun challenge that had anything whatsoever to do with its subject, but, nooooooo, the producers obviously had another lame challenge already in mind and just lazily slapped some Willie Wonka product placement on top of it. I've gotten where I really can't wait until PR drifts back over to Bravo, 'cause they sure as heck can't do a more ho-hum production than what the worn-out old guard has been doing on Lifetime lately.
  12. bobbyjoe

    S04.E09: Sex and the Kitty Girl

    You say it perfectly: how can Ru call this an All-Stars competition if part of the very rules imply that it’s in the best interests of the competitors to eliminate the best performing contestants? As you say, the best and the worst are the ones who get eliminated. By definiton, these rules give the advantage to “safe” performers, not the best or the bravest/riskiest (and the current All-Stars Hall of Fame bears this out). When the show returns next time if they don’t change the rules (and Ru seems irritatingly stuck on them since she didn’t even change them after all the uproar about the Shangela disaster) they should call it RuPaul’s Middle-Of-The-Road Race.
  13. bobbyjoe

    S04.E09: Sex and the Kitty Girl

    All-Stars is so screwed up that I actually like all the queens still in competition (and have for weeks) but have still again ended up feeling totally “meh” about who wins. Last week sent home someone who should by all rights be in the finale, so it’s not the genuine best in the finals, and tonight, while Latrice hasn’t been at her best through some of the season, she was totally in fine “safe” territory tonight, while Naomi’s performance in the challenge was utterly terrible and Monet’s was a mess. Latrice shouldn’t have even been up for elimination tonight other than the completely arbitrary and ever changing process of All-Stars, so it’s hard to feel any satisfaction one way or another in how it played out. I guess what I’m saying is that it’s just hard to care at all about a competition where nothing matters, not how well you do overall or how you do in a specific challenge. Since the actual competition part of the show ultimately just comes down to the whim of one or two of the competitors, maybe the next All-Stars shouldn’t pretend to be a competiton at all— it could just be a weekly drag variety show until the finale and then at the end they draw one queen’s name out of a hat and she gets to pick the winner. That sounds stupid, but it wouldn’t be any more pointless than the way they do things now.
  14. bobbyjoe

    S03.E12: Chapter Forty-Seven: Bizarrodale

    With Kevin and Moose tonight, the show pulled a fake-out on the “kill your gays” problem on tv where too often an LGBT character is the sacrifical lamb in the cast when the producers feel they need a “shocking” death. Particularly when two LGBT characters get too close, tv still too often quickly offs one of them. So for a minute there it looked like Moose was headed for Riverdale’s secondary Archie character graveyard (where folks like Miss Grundy and Dilton Doiley are buried). This would have been particularly bad as we’ve already seen one of Kevin’s lovers get killed off this season. Good for the show in not following through and instead turning it into a story about repressed homophobia.* *I do agree with people above who say Kevin was being a jerk about demanding Moose come out, but that kind of insensitivity is also, unfortunately, sometimes pretty realistic behavior in somebody as young as Kevin’s supposed to be.
  15. bobbyjoe

    S04.E12: I Need a Break

    This is why I think Greg’s behavior was way out of line. Almost every relationship has people who have some different interests, but in a healthy relationship if something has real meaning for your partner you sometimes go do something that’s not your favorite thing and put an actual effort into it because you know how much it means to that person. I dislike how Rebecca getting him to go is seen as though she held a gun to his head; the water park is something that has meaning for her, and Greg agrees to go without, as you note, telling her that he’s not going to put much if any effort into trying (like even going on the slides) once he gets there. Here, it almost feels like we’re supposed to accept Greg’s toxic level of extreme misanthropy as something Rebecca should just capitulate to and be like “oh, honey, I understand. I’ll just go on all the slides myself so you can sit here and hate everybody and in the future we’ll just do the things that you want to do,” which strikes me as much a more unhealthy attitude than anything Rebecca’s done up to that point in the episode. I think there are ways that Rebecca is backsliding, but trying to get your lover to do something that has special meaning for you, having that lover agree and then being disappointed and irritated that he doesn’t make much of a real effort at all once he gets there doesn’t strike me as crazy out-of-control behavior, that part just strikes me as human. As an episode hinting that their relationship is doomed, I find all of what we see realistic, but I’m not comfortable if we’re totally supposed to buy at face value the way it plays it at the end with Rebecca’s guilt and overwhelming need to apologize to Greg without anything reciprocal from him, because this feels dangerously close to a sexist “oh look at this crazy unreasonable woman expecting her boyfriend to go do something she wants to do” kind of story, and the show’s usually better than that.