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David T. Cole

Queer As Folk (US)

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Among the many myriad little things I love about this show (granted, there were a lot that pissed me off, too!), the things that stand out the most are cinematography and tunes.  The choice of music on this show, especially at pivotal, well-written or dramatic scenes, was just brilliant.  And during the funny, everyday, or over-the-top scenes, it was still pretty damn good.  The mix of tunes was especially memorable: club music, alt-rock dance music, chill/electronic/trance, folky-coffehouse rock, punk and disco deep tracks.  This show introduced me to a lot of new bands and/or songs that are now my favorites.  I was disappointed to hear that, when the show recently went up on Netflix, most of the music had been replaced.

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I agree with you, Kat.  I don't think I've ever watched a show so well scored.  The music was custom fitted to the scenes. Beautifully done.  The photography was spot on, too.  Remember Brian's father's funeral?  No dialog, just the stark dark coffin/clothing against brilliant snow....and beautiful music.  I got a list years ago of the music in every scene.

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Seriously. At a time when the best music on TV was, like, the instrumental background stuff The X-Files was using, it was amazing just how well the music fit.

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I was tooling around the web and came across some of Randy Harrison's performances on the (sadly no longer running) Our Hit Parade at Joe's Pub.

 

I don't know if these will link or embed.  The second link is slightly NSFW

 

Our Hit Parade - Randy Harrison - Shake Me Down - Cover - Cage The Elephant March 2011 - YouTube

 

OUR HIT PARADE - OMG - Randy Harrison covers Usher 12-15-10 Best Of The Year - YouTube

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Wow, who knew our Sunshine could sing!  Very nice!

 

I'll admit, when I first watched the show, I really did not like Justin's character.  But by the time the Season 1 "King of Babylon" episode rolled around, I loved him.  So spunky, and funny; and he was often the most mature and level-headed person around (at least where Brian *wasn't* concerned!).  I think many of his most fun moments on the show were when he wasn't really the focus, but was there as support or ensemble.  Mikey's horrible surprise party, and when the gang crashed Mikey and David's posh fundraiser party, come to mind.

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Loved when Brian & Justin danced in the street to ABBA's Chiquitita! And of course at the prom to the Drifters' Save the Last Dance for Me.

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So, discorules's (is that the right placement for the apostrophe?) post has me wondering: how much of the original music makes it onto the DVDs?

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I actually thought the writing was pretty good, much of the time. It was a groundbreaking show, and did a good job of handling many topics never seen before on American TV. They addressed gay 'conversion therapy', drug abuse in the community, gay-bashing, lesbian parenting, a whole spectrum of family issues, and other things TV had never cared to show before, despite many of them being important issues to the gay community for, like, ever.

 

And there were some great quotes along the way! A few -

 

Michael: “Have you ever been on a real date?”

Brian: “Once. I ended up fucking the waiter.”

 

Deb (responding to Brian’s joint): “One whiff of that and I’m back at Woodstock getting laid by three guys named Julio!”

 

Emmett: “It doesn’t sound like the Brian Kinney we all know and feel ambivalent about.”

 

Melanie: “Other than neo-Nazis, there’s nothing the Jews hate more than silence.”

 

Brian (on son’s first birthday): “It seems like only yesterday I was jackin’ off into that cup.”

 

And, of course, Brian's infamous statement that "There are two kinds of straight people in this world: the ones who hate you to your face and the ones who hate you behind your back", which has started many a heated discussion in gay circles since it was first uttered.

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Like this exchange:

 

[after Michael informs Hunter that Brian already has a boyfriend]
Hunter: You do?
Brian Kinney: In a non-defined, non-conventional way, yeah.

...

[Michael and Hunter argue about Hunter's 'job' as a hustler]
Michael: This guy could have killed you.
Hunter: They all could.
Michael: Well, if you know that why do you do it?
Hunter: I have low self-esteem. I was sexualized at too early an age. It's exciting, fun, and a great way to make non-reportable income.
Michael: I would like an honest answer, smart-ass.

 

Edited to correct order of things.

 

Also - really like this exchange:

 

Trick: Who's He?
Brian:That's a difficult question to answer given the limitations of the language, conventionality of most people's thinking... Ummm... Let's just say he's the guy I fuck more than once.
Justin: Unlike you.

Edited by fastiller
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Gale Harold guest DJed on LA Talk Radio's Sheena Metal show yesterday (07.22.2014).  It was really interesting and he played a ton of different, and very eclectic, songs.  You can find the show archived here: LA Talk Radio Sheena Metal Experience.

 

I think I'd like to have a beer and talk tunes with GH.

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Correcting my own post...I don't have a listing of all the QAF music from all five seasons....just the first three seasons.  And the site I got that from...years ago...no longer exists.  I was impressed by the wide range of music they used, every genre there is got a piece of the action.  Really well done.  Before watching and listening to QAF I'd never realized how much background music affects my appreciation and enjoyment of a scene.

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Cranston, sadly every single song in every episode is changed on Netflix. For someone like me who knows the music by heart, it's very jarring. Since Netflix wasn't a player when they filmed the show, I guess the music rights don't carry over. They did change a few songs from airing of show to DVD's.

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AnnieGirl...I've never watched it in reruns, looks like I'd be disappointed in the music.  Why do they do that...do they need additional permissions to use the same music in reruns?  How odd. 

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Jeez, I'm like a one-person posting parade here.

 

So I saw Atomic last week and really enjoyed.  Harrison was quite good in it as both Paul Tibbets and Edward Teller.  I'm glad I went; got exposure to a few new stage actors that I'd never seen before.  Here's a link to a short performance that Harrison and two of his co-stars (Jeremy Kushnier and Sara Gettelfinger) did in Bryant Park a few weeks back (not my video).

 

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Following up on my comments incorrectly posted on "Small Talk" thread, I watched the rest of season 3 which was not great and skimmed through seasons 4 and 5 which were the worse. 

 

It is still horrible to me how they slapped Justin back together with Brian. Justin deserved better than being Brian's appendage and that horrible Pink Posse story. I would have like to see Justin having fun and dating other guys his age. Justin simply not emotional damaged enough for me to believe that he would put up with Brian's bullshit. When he finally left Brian in season 5, it is too late for Justin to have any development apart from him, even his blossoming art  career was tacked on. Brian just got worse and worse.  It is not a pretty sight watching an aging club boy desperately trying to hold on to his youth by fucking every young guy in sight which is probably why they did the testicular cancer story. I thought the dreadful finale was Cowlip giving the finger to Brian/Justin fans. However, I was glad that Justin went away to NY in the end. He needed a good long break from Brian.

 

Ted was one of the stronger characters. I did not like that they made him into a drug addict and then gave him that ridiculous plastic surgery story that went on and on. He should have been given the testicular cancer story. I did like the story with Emmett as the Queer Guy and then his relationship with the football player. I thought that was well done. I still hate that Hunter story for Ben and Michael. Michael and Brian's friendship angst was just boring and unnecessarily overwrought. I liked Melanie and did not like that she ended up back stuck with Lindsay. Their move to Canada was so ridiculous. 

 

Overall QAF thoughts:

 

After re-watching QAF, I still think that it was a groundbreaking show that touched on important topics and likely had a profoundly positive impact on how a lot of heterosexual women who watched the show viewed gays and their community in the long run. I think that the first two and a half to three seasons were entertaining with a fun, if not ethnically diverse, cast. The final two seasons were just painful, poorly written and strained as the characters were boxed in, especially Brian. I noticed there  was a lot of shaky camera work in a lot of the episodes throughout the series.

 

The music in the first three seasons was phenomenal. Every episode had great music from different genres accompanying pivotal scenes. The scenes that resonate with me were when Justin seduced Brian on the dance floor on Babylon with "Let's Hear it for the Boy,"  "You Look so Fine" by Garbage when Brian goes into the backroom of Babylon and sees Justin fucking the guy he stole from Brian, and the choral chant at the end of season one when Justin is being taken from ambulance into the hospital and then Brian sits in shock in the hallway.

 

I have to admit that I am interested in seeing where these QAF characters would be now given the changing attitude in our society about homosexuality and gay marriage. Was Justin a success in New York? Are he and Michael still creating Rage? What is Brian up to? Would Melanie and Lindsay move back? How are Ted and Blake doing? How is Emmett doing: However, I am pretty ambivalent about a reunion movie with Cowlip in charge. WTF, I think that Showtime should do it and maybe even do a six episode reboot like FOX is doing with the X-Files. 

Edited by SimoneS
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SimoneS.....you are so right about the music...it made this series for me.  Every song fit carefully into a scene, just right.  The music for that season one finale....Justin being taken into the hospital, Brian in the hallway...is Parce Mihi Domine, in this case peformed by Jan Garbarek and the Hilliard Ensemble, from their record "Officium".  I play it often!

Edited by Cranston
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Cranston, I also thought the dance music in Babylon was outstanding. I especially loved the use of the Melancholy Rose by Operatica (DJ remix) and Rapture with Nadia Ali. It would be impossible to give a tv show quality score like QAF given the cost of licensing music copyright today. Not that many shows have ever cared enough to pay attention the score like QAF.

Edited by SimoneS

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SimoneS...I'm told that when networks run repeats of QAF the music isn't the same.  Why is this...they can't get permission to use the original scores?  Pity.

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SimoneS...I'm told that when networks run repeats of QAF the music isn't the same.  Why is this...they can't get permission to use the original scores?  Pity.

It's licensing rights.  They get them for one amount if it's just for the initial airing; it's another - much higher - rate for them to get them for syndication or re-runs.

 

It's why Saturday Night Live often omits the musical numbers (not the live acts, but when they use songs in skits) when they run the episodes on Hulu, or when the episode reruns on VH1 or wherever.

 

It's also why UK shows often use different music when they cross the Atlantic; they've only bought the rights to those songs for UK airing.  May also apply to US shows airing abroad.

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Correct. The one that springs to mind is when The Amazing Race used to use Sweet Georgia Brown when they had a pair of Harlem Globetrotters competing. Outside the US (and possibly Canada?), it was replaced with generic fanfare.

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After reading the Hollywood Reporter article about the QAF reunion, I have changed my mind and hope that Showtime and no other network does a QAF reunion. Cowlip were peddling the same delusional bullshit about Brian being the moral center and most honest character when he was the biggest liar and the most hypocritical character. However, I did enjoy them back peddling about Brian and Justin's relationship and future together. At the time of the finale, it was clear from interviews that they deliberately stuck a thumb in the eye of Brian and Justin fans by faking them out with the marriage and then, implying that the relationship was over for good. But now they want to get QAF back on the air, they are claiming they don't know where fans got it from that Brian and Justin were over. Ha. Talk about being hoisted on your own petard.

 

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/live-feed/queer-as-folk-reunion-reboot-800022

Edited by SimoneS

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The original music is on the QAF dvds which is good. There are some companies that do not bother paying the licensing rights for the music when they transfer their shows to DVDs. I know that happened with Scrubs.

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SimoneS, I just started re-watching QAF again, and my opinions (esp regarding Ted & Emmett), are similar.

I will say that Justin did date someone his age, ie the violinist in college. But other than that, I don't think there was anyone else. Personally I liked Brian and Justin better in later seasons, aft Brian had grown up. Tho watching him during early S2, was kinda of sad, because he's the one who has a harder time getting past Justin's assault. I missed Daphne in later seasons.

Personally, I had no interest in much Lindsay either. I didn't like Melanie at first, but then grew to love her.

I didn't mind the Hunter storyline, but hated Dr. David.

Of the parents, Debbie & the cop (can't remember his name) I adored, Jennifer bored me, Judith (?)Kinney was a bitch, but she served purpose on showing that there still are families that treat their gay sons & daughters that way. I wished they didn't kill off Uncle Vic, though. I didn't mention other parents like Mr. Taylor, Mr. Kinney, Mrs. Schmidt, Lindsey's & siblings because they weren't on enough to get a full picture.

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SimoneS, I just started re-watching QAF again, and my opinions (esp regarding Ted & Emmett), are similar.

I will say that Justin did date someone his age, ie the violinist in college. But other than that, I don't think there was anyone else. Personally I liked Brian and Justin better in later seasons, aft Brian had grown up. Tho watching him during early S2, was kinda of sad, because he's the one who has a harder time getting past Justin's assault. I missed Daphne in later seasons.

Funny: I always found Justin to be the more mature in that pairing, too.  Brian needed to catch up with him.  I also missed Daphne.

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I was watching this show last night. It was the episode about the Buds and Suds night at Babylon. I am on the west coast. It turns out that while I was watching it, some horrible person killed 50 and wounded 53 people at a gay night club in Orlando. RIP to the victims.

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I'm doing a re-watch of this as I don't think I've watched this since it originally aired. I don't remember hating Michael so much on my original viewing. I know he gets better through the seasons, but in the first season, he's a whiny, petulant brat.

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I always found Michael to be kind of whiny. Ted as well. It's surprising I enjoyed this show, since of the lead characters, the only one I always liked unequivocally was Emmett. Brian had his faults, but I liked him better than Michael or Ted. Justin was also whiny. 

It's been a while since the show ended, I think the timing might be right for a QAF reboot. Given his vanity, I'd like to see how Brian handled growing older. He was so traumatized by turning 30, I'd love to see how he handles 40! What did Justin end up doing? Did Mel and Lynds return to the States after gay marriage became legal? So many questions...

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There was some talks in the works about a year or so ago about possibly bringing this back.  A part of me would love that, but then another part of me thinks the magic would be gone.  It would be interesting to see how the characters lives had changed over the years by evolving a little away from the whole Babylon angle and focusing more on the day-to-day lives of the characters.  As far as I know all the main actors are still alive so it would be doable without having to recast anyone.  Wishful thinking, I suppose.

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On 7/29/2016 at 2:40 PM, DXD526 said:

I always found Michael to be kind of whiny. Ted as well. It's surprising I enjoyed this show, since of the lead characters, the only one I always liked unequivocally was Emmett. Brian had his faults, but I liked him better than Michael or Ted. Justin was also whiny. 

It's been a while since the show ended, I think the timing might be right for a QAF reboot. Given his vanity, I'd like to see how Brian handled growing older. He was so traumatized by turning 30, I'd love to see how he handles 40! What did Justin end up doing? Did Mel and Lynds return to the States after gay marriage became legal? So many questions...

I totally agree re Emmitt.  He is your forever friend, fiercely loyal and painfully honest.  

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A friend of mine told me that Scott Lowell was going to be doing a live streaming event about the show.  Don't know the when's and where's...

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