Jun 10, 2016

Beefcake and Heterosexism in My Netflix Recommendations

During the last week of May and first week of June, I was very busy, with late hours, getting caught in the rain, and lots of dates and hookups.  As a result, my immune system was impacted enough for me to catch a miserable summer cold.  I've spent the last two days on the couch with orange juice, ice cream  -- and Netflix.

It gives you recommendations based on your previous viewing.  Unfortunately, no matter how much I screen them for gay potential, my Netflix recommendations always turn out to be blearily heterosexist, with Girls! Girls! Girls! proclaimed from the get-go.  Here are the last 10 that I tried, and turned off within a few minutes.

Remember, these are movies and tv programs that I selected from a long list because I thought would have gay potential.

1. The Strange Calls (2011). An Australian comedy-paranormal tv series.  A screw-up police officer (Toby Truslove) is transferred to an isolated small town, where weird things keep happening. I love the paranormal, and he's rather cute, but guess who he meets within five seconds of his arrival in town?  The Girl.  Next!

(I don't think this is him, but it's what comes up when you google "Toby Truslove shirtless.")

2. I thought Phantom Halo (2015) would be paranormal, but it's a caper about two grifter brothers (Thomas Brodie-Sangster and Luke Kleintack) who decide counterfeit some bills to pay their debts. Ok, I can watch a caper movie.  Except it takes five minutes to introduce the Girl.  Next!

3. The Heroes of Evil (2015).  Three bullied, battered teens in Spain begin to use violence to defend themselves,but first they break into an abandoned house and find...porno magazines!  Straight ones!

I hear that there's a gay kiss later on, but star Jorge Clemente explains that his character "isn't gay."  A kiss is just a kiss.  Next!

4. Fried (2014), a British workplace comedy about the employees of a chicken restaurant in Croydon, with Matthew Cottle as the sane center of the lunacy, mostly about heterosexual dating and marriage.  Next!

5. The Ranch (2016), stars Ashton Kucher as a pro athlete who comes home after a failed football career  to run the family ranch with his older brother (Danny Masterson), while negotiating...well, their hetero-horniness.  Within the first ten minutes, Ashton runs into -- and jumps into bed with -- his old high school Girlfriend.  At least we see some Ashton Kucher chest.  Next!

6. The Lady in a Car with Glasses and a Gun (2015): ok, I know there will be a lady, a "beautiful secretary" who steals her boss's car and goes on the lam to a resort town she's never visited before, only to find that everyone knows her.  And there's a body in the trunk.  Sounds intriguing.  But it took only three minutes for me to get annoyed by the constant close-up shots of the Lady's legs and breasts, and the constant open-mouthed leers from every man who sees her.  Next!

7. Dope (2015).  A high school "geek" (Shameik Moore) tries to get into his dream school, Harvard, while negotiating drugs and crime in his hood.  Starts out nice, with Shameik Moore shirtless in bed, but then, less than a minute later, he's gazing at the Girl and discussing how much he is into her.  Next!

8. Wrecker (2015).  "Two friends on a road trip are menaced by a psychotic truck driver."  I love road rage movies like Duel, and two guys clinging to each other in terror -- there certainly should be some homoerotic buddy-bonding!  Whoops, it's two girls, or more precisely, the legs and breasts of two "hot girls."  Next!

9. Special Correspondents (2016), a Netflix comedy with two hot guys on the poster -- and no girl.  No doubt an odd-couple buddy comedy.

Nope -- journalist (Eric Bana) cracks a story by posing as a cop, and promptly sleeps with the wife of a sound technician (Ricky Gervais) who will become his partner on a road trip to Ecuador.  But I don't get that far.  Next!

10. Hibana (2016), a Japanese tv series adapting the novel Hibana (Spark), by Naoki Matayoshi, which won the prestigious Akutagawa Prize.  It's about two comedian buddies who specialize in manzai (comedic dialogues): the young, struggling Tokunaga (Kento Hayashi) and the older, established Kamiya (Kazuki Namioka).

There aren't any girls in the first episode, anyway...

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