Jan 27, 2024

Gemstones Season 1 Finale: Judy and Kelvin start to heal, Scotty joins the family, and we say goodbye with some random dicks


This is a continuation of Episode 1.9: Kelvin goes dark, Keefe goes down, and Captain America saves the day

Skip to the random dicks
Showrunner Danny McBride has stated that he wants every season of his programs to tell a complete story: no callbacks to previous seasons, and no cliffhangers.  By the finale, every plotline has been resolved and every character development arc has been concluded.  He also hates downbeat endings, so the season finale tells us that "they lived happily ever after"  

The Season 1 primary plot featured Gideon and Scotty betraying the family, first by blackmailing Jesse over the tape of his sex-and-drugs party, then by planning to steal the Easter offerings from the church. Secondary plots involved Eli butting heads with Rev. Seasons over his church expansion, and Kelvin and Judy dealing with obstacles in their relationships.  The finale ties all of the plotlines into a single theme: forgiveness.

Shot 1 
:  Church. In his sermon, Eli describes his visit to Aimee-Leigh's childhood home, where he interacted with her spirit.  Cut to a flashback of the siblings collecting the money that Baby Billy and Tiffany stole from Scotty's van.

Shot 2:  Eli continues: "We move through this world, crossing paths with friends, family...and I believe that the goal of all that colliding is to make us appreciate one another, to find empathy." Shots of Martin, Mandy (Chad's wife), and Chad, sitting far away from her. 

Cut to a flashback of Rev. Seasons  (Dermot Mulroney) working in a hardware store (Baptist churches are autonomous, so if one closes you don't automatically get placed elsewhere). Eli offers him a job as pastor of the satellite church that Baby Billy abandoned. Rev. Seasons was a secondary Big Bad, but Eli stole his flock, so we are not sure who needs forgiveness more.

More forgiveness after the break

Akim and Jim: Tarzan and Boy of European comics

One of the more popular Tarzan clones was Akim, Son of the Jungle, created by Italian cartoonist Roberto Renzi and artist Augusto Pedrazza.  In Italy Tarzan clones are called Tarzanidi.

During his run in Italy (1950-1967), he was exported to France for 700+ issues, Germany for 500+ issues, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and Greece (where he was renamed Tarzan).  Hundreds of issues appeared through the 1960s and 1970s, with ironic "new adventures" in the 1990s.

Amazon.fr has them for sale for between 5 and 10 euros.

Some of the rarest appeared in this single-strip per page format.  Here Akim fights the Biblical muscleman Samson.

Akim's back story is nearly identical to that of Tarzan:

Count Frederick Rank, the British ambassador to Calcutta, is shipwrecked on the wild coast of Africa along with his wife and infant son, Jim.  The parents soon die, leaving the toddler to be raised by gorillas.

Grown up, he becomes Akim, Son of the Jungle, with various animals at his command.  He marries the British heiress Rita, and they adopt a son, Jim, who turns into buffed blond man-mountain.

In most adventures, they leave Rita back at the tree house and venture out as a pair, leaving all of the gay subtexts of the 1940s Tarzan movies starring Johnny Weissmuller and Johnny Sheffield.

Sometimes Jim goes out adventuring on his own, requiring Akim to rescue him from the usual jungle poachers, cannibals, and lost civilizations, as well as aliens, mad scientists, and dinosaurs.

Whether they're speaking French, German, Italian, or Dutch, the buddy-bonding is easy to spot.

Steve Antin: Radical gay representation, from "The Last American Virgin" to "Girllicious." With lots of bulges and butts

Steve Antin's bio on the Internet Movie Database claims that he "broke all the girls' hearts" in The Last American Virgin (1982).  Same old story: gay people don't exist, so all girls and no boys swooned over his character.

Spoiler alert: Steve is gay.  

Link to NSFW version

Born in 1958, Steve broke into film playing the Jesse whose girl Rick Springfield longs for in "Jesse's Girl" (1981).  Next came The Last American Virgin (1982).  In his first major screen appearance, he plays high schooler Rick, who has sex with dozens of girls, like "every high school boy" in the 1980s -- except for his his buddy Gary (Lawrence Monoson, below), the "last American virgin."  So he and a third buddy, David (Joe Rubbo), strive to get Gary laid.  

This is not the typical 1980s "sex with girls is the meaning of life" teen comedy. Horndog Rick gets Diane pregnant and dumps her, so Virgin Gary pays for the abortion and falls in love with her, but Diane dumps him!  Then Gary dumps Rick and drives off in tears. Rather a downbeat ending. 

But there's a obvious gay subtext relationship between Gary and Rick: Gary seems to like Diane only because Rick was intimate with her.

And there's a lot of beefcake.  Far more semi-naked male bodies than female bodies.  Muscle hunks in their underwear. Jocks stripped down in the locker room.

There is even a penis size contest, with the boys gleefully evaluating packages while their classmates parade by naked.

When was the last time heterosexual male teenagers were so happy to gaze at a row of naked men?

You might almost think that this movie with a gay star had a gay audience in mind.

Steve went on to play some teenagers on tv, the spoiled rich kid/horndog in The Goonies (1985), and some action/adventure and dramatic roles, all heterosexual.  But when he became the boyfriend of mogul David Geffen, he got some gay-positive roles.

He wrote, produced, and starred in the dramedy Inside Monkey Zetterland (1992), as a retired child actor turned screenwriter who lives with his overbearing mother and wacky/sad relatives.  He's straight, but he is friends with a gay man (Rupert Everett) and a lesbian posing as a married couple.  They are plotting to bomb an insurance agency that is denying coverage to people who are HIV positive. 

It's My Party
(1996), although extremely downbeat, was a classic of gay representation.  Nick (Eric Roberts) is dying of AIDS, with only a few days of mental awareness left, so he decides to kill himself.  His family and friends come to his "going-away party," including ex-boyfriend Brandon (1980s tv hunk Gregory Harrison).  Steve plays one of their friends.  

Brian To appears nude at the party.

After It's My Party, Steve moved into writing and producing.  His Young Americans (2000) is a teen soap featuring Ian Somerhalder (left) as a boy who develops feelings for his best friend, and thinks he might be gay.  It only lasted for eight episodes, so "there wasn't time"
 for him to come out. 

But Steve has also produced The Pussycat Dolls in Girlicious.  His writing credits include Burlesque, with Cher as the owner of an all-girl burlesque club; and Proud Mary, about a hit lady saddled with a kid.

And Chasing Papi, about a guy (Eduardo Verastegui) with three girlfriends, who dump him and find their own inner strengths. 

There's something to be said for female empowerment, but it seems clear that the days of Steve Antin's radical gay representation are long past.

Butts, bulges, and dicks of Steve and his crew on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

Jan 26, 2024

Top Hot/Hung Photos of Blair Jackson, Part 1: Wicked Lips, Fierce Friday, and what happened in Australia in the summer of 2016


Gemstone Episode 1.4, "Wicked Lips," is pivotal for Kelvin x Keefe in several ways.  It switches Keefe's back story from primarily about the drugs to primarily about the Goth/ fetish lifestyle, and establishes that he's gay.  And it allows Adam Devine to demonstrate that Kelvin is not attracted to women.

Go directly to the penises

Central to this transformation is Austin (Blair Jackson), Dot Nancy's older, sleazy boyfriend. In their first meeting, Austin criticizes Kelvin as "the 40-year old virgin," and Kelvin counters with "I took a celibacy promise." 

Later, at Club Sinister, Kelvin and Keefe save Dot from sleazoid Austin and a police raid, but they turn the "damsel in distress" trope on its head.   After the rescue, neither falls in love with Dot: Kelvin's chief concern is "dropping a deuce," and Keefe announces his love for Kelvin.

Blair Jackson studied at the Hollywood Academy of Arts and Sciences.  He is known for Varsity Blood, Terminator: Dark Fate, and four episodes of Deputy (with Stephen Dorf) 

He also does modeling.  It's a pity that his Gemstones role didn't involve taking his shirt off.

Summer 2016

Blair is also a philosopher (check his instagram for quotes from Paul Coelho), personal trainer, model, and best dude friend. 

More hot/hung photos on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

"The Seminarian": Hung gay evangelical looks for love, annoys his friends and the viewer. Three penises, no waiting.

The Seminarian
 2011: "A seminarian saves a lady's life. They fall in love."  And "A closeted gay seminarian struggles..."  Well, which is it?  It can't be both.  The only way to find out is to watch on Roku.

Link to NSFW version

Scene 1: Whoa, the first scene shows a very well hung naked guy changing clothes in his kitchen!  Now we know the audience they're going after.  

He's Ryan Goodman (Goodman, har har) (Mark Cirillo), who lives in an incredible decadent-red apartment with his "when will you find a girl and get married" mother.  He is about to graduate from a conservative evangelical seminary, but he doesn't want to become a preacher: he's applying to a Ph.D. program at Yale.   

Scene 2:
 Meeting with his thesis advisor. Ryan is writing on how "love and desire" encourage procreation, protection, and socialization, "which enable us to survive and persist as a species."  The point of life is reproduction?  That's the house, job, wife, kids trajectory that my parents were always pushing on me.  I thought a gay guy would come up with something less oppressive.  Besides, he forgot the theology. "Oh, right...um...when we love each other, we reflect God's love." .

Scene 3: A restroom hookup leads to a heart-to-heart.  The guy had a bad breakup six years ago, and hasn't dated anyone since.  "So you're content without love?" Mark asks, horrified.  Some people are aromantic, and some are asexual.

Scene 4: Mark has only one gay friend on campus, Gerald (Matthew Hanon), who has just been dumped by his boyfriend, and doesn't have the energy to listen to his "love is bollocks" moaning.  Also a sraight friend, Eugene, who plasters the campus with "Protect Traditional Marriage" fliers. 

Although he has a girlfriend, Straight Eugene argues that you don't need to be in a relationship -- God's love is enough.  If you disagree, you don't understand God, and what are you doing in seminary?  Judgmental, aren't you?  Oh, right, you're training to become a preacher, and hate gays for a living.

Scene 5: 
 Mark working on his thesis: "When you love another human being, you love God."  He pauses for cybersex with Bradley, his online boyfriend, who lives too far away to meet. 

Scene 6: Mark decides to busybody into his gay friend Gerald's relationship, but  they have reconciled and don't want him nosing around.

Cut to the gym, where Mark is talking to his other gay friend about the Online Boyfriend. "So he lives far away.  You have to go see him, or you will never find love."  Dude, you live in Los Angeles.  Just walk into any bar and say "I have 8 inches.  Who wants to buy me dinner?"

Cut to Mark sitting on a bench, looking morose while Straight Eugene flirts with his girlfriend.

Scene 7: Mark bites the bullet and drives all the way down to Irvine to meet his Online Boyfriend. Ugh, bare apartment.  Ever hear of paintings?  Cut to the next day, with Mark gushing about the date to his gay friend Gerald.  Gerald isn't interested. 

Scene 8: Uh-oh, Online Boyfriend ghosts Mark. The various intertwining relationships are getting complicated. I'd better stop the scene-by-scene here.

The Online Boyfriend has some problems with drinking and depression, and keeps jerking Mark around, so Mark goes after his gay friend Gerald.  But Gerald isn't into it. 

Mark changes his thesis: "How can love be a gift from God, when it causes so much pain? The pain we feel is the pain God feels when we reject His love." 

He goes farther down the rabbit hole of disbelief: Didn't God know in advance about Adam and Eve's fall, which created this world of misery?  How could a good God allow it?  "This is what I hate about theology. It's justifying senseless beliefs with elaborate pontifications."  His friends wonder why he's still in seminary, and if he's still saved.  "You've backslidden, man."

He comes out to his friend's girlfriend, who respons about as you would expect: "You chose to sin!  You have to repent, and return to God!"  And to his thesis advisor, who advises: Don't tell anyone else, You don't want to be expelled a few months before graduation.  

Finally, we watch Mark sitting on a bench, staring into space, for about five minutes. Then he goes home and stares into space some more, and starts crying.  Mom asks what's wrong.  "Do you really want to know?" he asks.  "I'll tell you." Cut to black.

 Three penises. None of the other actors have any beefcake photos available. Left: more of Mark's penis.

Angst: I thought the crisis would be about "can you be gay and Christian," but it's really "why is love so painful?"  Being gay makes it more painful only because Ryan can't talk to many people about it. Just Gerald, Anthony, and Anthony's new boyfriend Jeff. 

My Grade: Too slow -- we spend 20 seconds staring at a curb, waiting for Ryan to walk by.  Rather wooden performances -- Ryan has one facial expression.  And I hate it when movies end abruptly,without a plot resol.... 

Some enormous penises on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

"The Boys in the Band": Any Day that Ends with a Naked Man is a Good Day


The movie The Boys in the Band, based on Mart Crowley's 1968 play, appeared in 1970.  I watched it on VHS sometime in the 1990s, and even with some leeway for being pre-Stonewall, I hated it.  A party with a bunch of screaming queens oozing with self-hatred, sniping viciously at teach other, obsessed with straight guys who don't know that they exist, trying to seduce a strraight guy who stumbled in by accident.  Yuck!

I just saw the 2020 Netflix version, and liked it a lot more.  The tone was more upbeat and positive, thanks to some subtle changes to the script (the line "if only we didn't hate ourselves quite so much" is gone) and additions to the mise en scene. For instance, we see the characters interacting after the party, eating in a restaurant, attending Mass, cuddling in a cab, having sex, building a life in spite of their homophobic society.

Some viewers thinks that Boys is "gay misery porn," but remember, it's 1968.  "Homosexuality" is a psychosis, so you are in psychotherapy searching for a "cure."  Sodomy is an imprisonable offense, gay bars are illegal and underground, and there are no gay organizations except for the highly-closeted Mattachine Society.  The world hates you.  But you are still determined to live, so you throw a birthday party.

1. Michael (Jim Parsons), who is in debt up to his eyeballs and suffering from Catholic guilt, hosts the party.  He gets a shocker when a straight college friend, Alan (Brian Hutcherson), calls out of nowhere and wants to stop in "for a drink."  You never tell straights (the term "coming out" means acknowledging that you are gay), so he asks the other guys to act straight.  

When Alan figures it out anyway yet doesn't run away screaming, Michael introduces a party game to compel him into coming out: you have to call the one person you have always loved and tell them.  He assumes that Alan will call his other college buddy, now out, whom he was obviously in love with.  But the plan backfires when Alan calls his wife.

So Alan was straight all along?  Or is he still in the closet?  Michael is devastated.  But after the party, he goes to midnight Mass and feels better.

2. Donald (Matt Bomer, right), Michael's best friend and former lover, is visiting for the weekend.  He doesn't play the game.  But he does take a shower, giving us a nice beefcake scene that did not appear in the original movie.

3.-4. Hank (Tuc Watkins, left) is in the process of divorcing his wife so he can be with Larry (Andrew Rannells).  Larry recoils at the thought of heterosexual-style monogamy, but still calls Hank during the game.  They decide to try an open relationship.

5. Bernard (Michael Benjamin Washington), who is black and has to deal with racist jokes (even from his friends), has always loved the first guy he had sex with, the son of the rich family his mother used to work for.  In a flashback, we see them frolicking naked in a pool, butts and cocks visible. He calls, gives the message to the mother, and is devastated.

6. Benard's best friend is the campy queen Emory (Robin de Jesus), who was outed and ridiculed when everyone at his high school discovered his crush on an older boy.  Later he apologizes to Bernard for his racist quips, and they are shown having dinner together.

7.-8. Harold, (Zachary Quinto) the guest of honor, is a "32 year old ugly pock-marked fag Jew" who takes lots of weird drugs and  constantly picks at imaginary facial blemishes.  They seem to all love him, but he strikes me as threatening, observing and criticizing the events like a petty tyrant.  I kept wondering what he had on them.

The Cowboy (Charlie Carver, top photo) is a dimwitted hustler hired as one of Harold's birthday presents.  They get more romantic interactions than in the original movie, kissing, cuddling, and, in the last scene, having sex (Harold has a surprisingly nice butt).  

The "call someone you've always loved" game still seems too cruel to foist upon your friends (and you can only play it once), but at least the self-loathing is gone.

My Partner: "It was awful!  Gay life as endless misery!"

Me: "But it wasn't all misery.  They had friends.  They had lovers.  Any day that ends with a naked man in your bed is a good day, in 1968 or  2020."

See also: Andrew Rannell and Adam Devine: bromance, bulge and butt pictures

Jan 25, 2024

Chris Messina: "Birds of Prey," "The Mindy Project," and lots of movies featuring angst and dicks


I didn't get a lot of page views for my review of The Sinner -- maybe everyone found the title too judgmental -- so I decided to repurpose the numerous nude photos of Chris Messina into a separate article.  Who is this guy whom I never heard of before, who lacks a standard gym rat physique yet manages to tear his clothes off in practically every screen appearance?

Link to the nude photos

He doesn't have much of a social media presence.  This Chris Messina looks like him, but must be somebody else, since he has a boyfriend, and our guy has a wife.  Plus an article in Forbes proclaiming "Chris Messina loves women."  Wow, a heterosexual, how bizarre! I've heard of men like that, but I've never met one in real life. How do they decide who's the top and who's the bottom?

Our Chris, who loves women, was born in 1974  He grew up in New York City, dropped out of college after one semester, and moved onto Broadway, then tv. He has 75 acting credits on the IMDB, including substantial roles in Damages, The Newsroom, The Mindy Project, and Based on a True Story.   I've only seen him in Argo and Birds of Prey.

Not a lot of gay roles.  In an interview, he says that his villain Victor Szaz in Birds of Prey is "probably gay." and in Based on a True Story, his character is married to a woman, but makes out with a guy during a fantasy orgy.

Our first glimpse of Chris's private parts comes in the tv series Six Feet Under (about a mortuary).  His Ted Farwell, an attorney who dates some of the ladies, walks through his house nude.

28 Hotel Rooms
 (2012) features a Woman and a Man (Chris) hooking up in hotel rooms every time they are in the same city on business.  It sounds artsy, pretentious, and heterosexist, but apparently Chris walks around nude a lot.

The Mindy Projec
t (2012-2017) stars Mindy Kaling as a OB/GYN doctor looking for love in New York City.  Chris plays Danny Castellano, her Love Interest, in 90 episodes. His gay brother Richie appears in 8 episodes.

90 episodes, and all we get is a bulge shot?

Oh, well, Digging for Fire (2015) gives us another dick shot. It stars Jake Johnson as a nuclear family dad with marital problems -- and a skeleton buried in the back yard.  Chris plays one of his friends, who comes to a party involving call girls and skinny dipping.

The Sweet Life (2016) is an "edgy and unconventional dramedy" about a Man an a Woman on a road trip to San Francisco, where they will jump off the Golden Gate Bridge.  All that angst, and all we get is a butt shot?

More dick in Sharp Objects (2016): a women with psychiatric problems investigates the murders of two young girls. Chris plays a detective working on the case, and obviously her Love Interest.  Sounds terribly depressing.  Go back to comedy, Dude!

The Secrets We Keep 
(2020).  I don't know, Romanian refugees, tortured past, dark secrets. 

 F*k the sadness.  Dick and butt shots aren't worth it. Let's go back to the gay Chris Messina and his boyfriend.

Dicks, butts, and angst on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

Jan 24, 2024

"The Sinner": Retired cop, sleazoid prof, and predatory chum, in Australia/New York. But at least we see Matt Bomer nude.


I was recommended Season 3 of The Sinner, a crime drama anthology starring Bill Pullman as a cop drawn into different adventures every season.  I'm not much into crime dramas, but there are reputedly gay subtexts, so here goes: Episode 1.

Link to NSFW version

Scene 1: Jamie (Matt Bomer) a guy in a scruffy suit, sits in a toilet stall, smoking marijuana. He walks through a ritzy private school, getting drooled over by all the coeds.  They need another chaperone for the LGBTQ  Alliance field trip.  "Sure, I'm happy to do it."  So he's bi?   

Then he teaches his class -- something about the Treaty of Versailles --in a small, crowded conference room.  Only female students?.  Is this a girls' school, or are we emphasizing that he's a hetero horndog?

After class, a girl hangs back to flirt while her friends glare jealously from the door.  Don't worry, you'll get your turn.  She's decided to apply to Brown, and she needs a letter of recommendation.  "Sure, you write it and I'll sign it."   Sleazing on co-eds, and now forgery?  This guy is a jerk.

Scene 2: 
The Big Boss congratulates elderly cop Harry (Bill Pullman, left) on his retirement, although his replacements, Soto (Eddie Martinez. below) and McCafferty, are awful.  They have verve and energy, but no experience. 

Scene 3: A train chugging by a river.  Inside, Jamie the Sleazoid Prof is staring angrily at the other passengers as they scroll through their cell phones.  He gets off and chases after one, a bald guy in a business suit.

Meanwhile, Harry the Retired Cop, at the same station, greets his daughter and grandson: "Welcome to the Northern Territory." So this must be Darwin, Australia.  They drive to the creepy, isolated house that he bought to retire in -- a former army barracks.  Daughter disapproves -- what if he need help? Cell phones don't even work out here.  "I can get bars in the front yard." 

She also disapproves of her son's interest in reading.  "That's all he does.  He's got no friends."  Especially that one fantasy novel -- he won't put it down. Plot dump: she's recently divorced, and ex Andy has vanished to London.

Scene 4: Jamie the Sleazoid Prof is barbecuing, while his wife Leela complains about the customers in her shop.   Wait -- what happened to the guy he was chasing?  I thought he'd end up dead.  Suddenly Jamie has the urge to stick his hand onto the barbecue grill, but Wifey interrupts him.  They smooch.  .

Doorbell rings: Amazon Delivery.  Jamie is shocked and horrified. "What are you doing here?  I told you not to come here." So he prefers brick-and-mortar bookstores?  

Nope, the Amazon stuff was a misdirection.  It's actually Nick (Chris Messina), whom Jamie knows but hates.  Maybe a downlow hookup?  They argue and sputter at each other, but when Leela shows up, Nick is all smiles, and gets a dinner invitation.

Scene 5: Jamie the Sleazoid Prof and Hookup Nick glaring at each other across the dinner table, while Leela drones on about her shop. I don't really understand what she sells, but there are candles and  "essential oils"  Nick criticizes Jamie for forcing his wife to move to Australia, when she wanted to stay in Brooklyn. He makes more ominous, threatening statements, but Leela is oblivious. Not very smart for someone named after a space pilot on "Futurama."  

Scene 6: Night.  Harry the Retired Cop is asleep on the couch.  He gets a phone call. Hey, no cell phone reception, remember?  There was an accident off Route 9, so he has to go investigate.  Hey, retired, remember?

And now he's driving on the right side of the road.  This can't be Australia!  But the only Northern Territory I'm familiar with is in Australia.  There's a Northwest Territory in Canada, but I don't think Yellowknife has that huge train station.  Maybe he was riffing on the remoteness of his community, and expected to have the sound on, so they could hear the accents. 

Accident scene: The driver crashed into a tree. "He's ok -- at St. Emilia's getting checked out."  But he got splattered all over the car.  WTF?  Lady, you just said he was ok! Are we watching events in parallel worlds simultaneously?

What was the driver doing on private road that leads to just one house, where the owner wasn't expecting him?  The cops scratch their heads, baffled by this mystery. Harry checks out the driver -- it's Hookup Nick!

Scene 7:  The other "he," the one that's ok, is Jamie the Sleazoid Prof.  He sits on an examination table, looking sinister, staring at his hands.  

Scene 8: Retired Cop Harry works while his replacement, Soto, glares at him.  He calls a lady to tell her that the cops have some of her father's stuff.  Does she want it?  "No. Ok, I'll give you my home address."  Now he says he's in Dorchester, New York 11332.  The zip code is Flushing, Queens.  I was not aware that Queens was called the Northern Territory.  So when Nick got angry because Jamie forced his wife to move to the other side of the world, he meant ten minutes by subway? 

Jamie the Sleazoid Prof comes in for the insurance interview. After dinner, they went out for a drink at Nick's hotel. On the way back, Nick was driving too fast, and crashed  No big mystery.

"But where were you going?  You were nowhere near your house or his hotel. "Um...um...we were looking for an overlook, and got lost."  An overlook in the middle of the night?

Gay subtext: "I saw Nick die.  It was like seeing him for the first time.  The way he looked at me..."  This makes Harry suspicious.  So what if Nick and Jamie were boyfriends?  How would that affect the case?

More obfuscation after the break

Gemstones Episode 1.9 Review, Continued: Kelvin goes dark, Keefe goes down, and Captain America saves the day

This is a continuation of Gemstones Episode 1.9 Review: Jesse is racist, Judy is a rapist, and Kelvin is the Devil

He's not my boyfriend:  
Earlier in the episode, Kelvin reveals that "he's coming apart," certain that his lack of interest in women and recent forays into "darkness" signify that he is the Devil.  The siblings tried to comfort him, but apparently it didn't help: he shows up at the teen group wearing a Goth teddy boy outfit, mascara, pale lipstick, dark glasses, and shiny vinyl pants, and announces "I have transformed myself into something Dark."  He's not Jesus, but a vile creature of sin, he must leave them.  

But his replacement, Ronald Meyers (Josh Warren), is "pure": chubby, greasy-haired, an assistant manager at the GameStop.  One can't help but conclude that "pure" means "never had sex," a contrast with Kelvin, who obvioulsy has. 

Kelvin makes a dramatic exit.  Dot Nancy, whom he rescued from Club Sinister, scoffs, as if to say "What an idiot!", and follows. "Is this about your boyfriend?"  Notice that she is not being pejorative; she honestly believes that they are a gay couple.  

Kelvin corrects her:  "Ok, no, he's not my boyfriend. We're just a couple dudes who like to hang out. Why?"  He's being awfully nonchalant -- compare Season 3, where "rumors swirling around" drive him into a panic.  He's already the Dark Lord, a being infused by homoerotic desire, so why get upset over a simple mistake?

Fans who insist that "Kelvin is straight!" often point to this statement, but maybe they're not "boyfriends," partners in a caring, emotionally-fulfilling relationship.  Kelvin believes that Satan is all about sex, not love, so whatever he feels for Keefe -- whatever he does with Keefe -- must be driven solely by lust.   

That will all change in a moment, when Dot shows him Keefe's instagram page. He has returned to his old job as Baby Queef, a performance artist at Club Sinister: "The baby is back!"  and "Haven't I fallen far enough?"  

Responses from fans: "I'm psyched!  I can't wait!"  "We're off to never-never land!" 

Yelling "No, no, no," Kelvin rushes off. Why is he fine with turning into the Dark Lord, but upset when Keefe becomes one of his followers?  Maybe because his transformation was all about wallowing in self-pity, while Keefe's is for real. He is about to be destroyed, spiritually, psychologically, and maybe even physically.

Gideon in Haiti
: Before we can find out what happens next with Kelvin and Keefe, we cut to Gideon in Haiti: colorful "third world" shots of goats, a taverna, Gideon  meeting a group of kids, and so on.  The Water 2 Haiti ministry reflects the real Water for Life, which has been sponsoring well digging and irrigation since 1983. 

Jesse tracks Gideon down and asks him to come home. He refuses: he's doing missionary work to expiate his sins, so he can find peace.   Jesse will have to find anothe way to reconcile with Amber.

BJ is Shocked:  Back to the Gemstone Compound, night.  BJ wants to do a grand gesture to get Judy back (you dumped her, remember?), but Brock the Security Guard makes fun of his name and won't let him in (he lived there before the breakup -- wouldn't Brock know him and let him by default?).  

Rejected at the gate, BJ says "It's time to be a man" and finds an isolated place with a fence he can climb over.  We get a good view of the amusement park as he sneaks through, trying to abandon "childish things," as St. Paul suggested.   But the stealth plan doesn't work:  he is surrounded by security guards and tazed.

The Isolation Tank: Meanwhie, Kelvin is trying a grand gesture of his own (you dumped him, remember?). He arrives at Club Sinister with yet another party going on (or is there always a party in the Satanic realm?)  He pushes through the crowd (and, significantly, shrinks back with audible “Ewww!” at the sight of a naked lady), and finds Keefe's old friend Daedalus.  "Keefe is discovering some things about himself," he says. What does Keefe not know about himself?  Surely he knew that he was gay.  

Then: "I transformed him back into the earliest state of his being. He's sinking beneath his reality as we speak.  He's regressing to a transitive state."  I couldn't find an exact meaning for this phrase, but it probably means a state where you can be transformed into a different person.  

Kelvin threatens him: “Take me to him right now! I will beat your f*ng ass!”   

Daedalus immediately backs down and leads Kelvin to a private room.  Keefe is floating in a milky liquid like amniotic fluid, wearing a gimp outfit with his genitals exposed.  This is performance art: party guests are watching him descend past the womb into oblivion. Some are inhaling or drinking his life force.

Kelvin thinks that Satan offers strength and power; you become a Dark Lord.  But he is wrong.  You become nothing, absorbed and obliterated by the Sadness.

He pushes away the "hissinig demons,"  ignores Keefe's semi-erect penis, jumps in, and starts tearing off the tubes and wires. Um...dude, he gets oxygen from those.  The mask comes off: it is Satan, not God, who forces us to live in masks, hide who we are from the world.

Kelvin kisses Keefe's  forehead and presses their faces together, crying and yelling "Fuck the Sadness."  This is a call-back to Atreyu yelling "Fight the Sadness" in The Neverending Story earlier.   Finally Keefe returns, gasping and sputtering, to the world of the living.  He explains:  “I was so lost without you…then the Beast came for me, and I let it in.  Hold me.” Kelvin responds: “Shh.  I’m here now.”  

"I'm still really high.": a kicker to add some levity to a critical scene.

Tony Cavalero states that he and Adam were going to play it for laughs.  Then director Jody Hill told them that this scene was an "affirmation of their love."  So they played it with real emotional intensity, and ended up in tears. This is not a spiritual leader saving his disciple, or a good buddy saving a friend; Keefe is the damsel in distress in a 1940s movie serial or superhero comic book, rescued from certain doom, whispering "if it weren't for you, I'd be...." before the fade out kiss. (Captain America saves Bucky below).

Why don't they kiss?  (Spoiler alert: there is no on-screen kiss until the penultimate episode of Season 3.   From the showrunners' point of view, there are lots of reasons: fear of offending conservative viewers, interest in sparking fan discussion; reluctance to commit to Kelvin being "really" gay.  But for analysis of a naturalistic program, we must pretend that we are looking through a window at real people, whose reactions are consistent what what came before: for Kelvin, kissing means love.  It means a  permanent, exclusive, emotionally intimate relationship. It means getting party invitations as a couple, sitting together at the family dinners, celebrating anniversaries, growing old together.  Kelvin isn't sure that what he feels for Keefe is love, or if romantic love between men is even possible.  He won't be sure until near the end of Season 2.

Or maybe he just doesn't want to kiss a guy who is sputtering a noxious, milky liquid. Would you?

A full-grown adult man:  To complete the parallel Kelvin/Keefe and Judy/BJ stories, Judy retrieves BJ from the compound's security office.  He explains that he is now "a full-grown adult man," so he wants romance, not just a sexual thing. Are you listening, Kelvin?  "Let me teach you about relationships."  She agrees.

The siblings just have to reconcile with their Dad and retrieve the offering money from Baby Billy (who incidentally, dies from a lightning strike and is resurrected by a bee sting).  One more naked guy, and we're ready for the season finale.

Two naked guys and a lot of nick-of-time rescues on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

Jan 23, 2024

Call It Thunder: 40 Years of Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac was big when I was in high school, especially during my junior year, 1976-77, when I discovered what "gay" meant and started dating Verne, the preacher's son.

 I wasn't a fan.  Their songs were all about girls:

Rhiannon rings like a bell through the night
And wouldn't you love to love her?
Takes to the sky like a bird in flight
And who will be her lover?

Thunder only happens when it's raining
Players only love you when they're playing
Say women they will come and they will go
When the rain washes you clean, you'll know, you'll know

Plus they were heterosexual.  Mick Fleetwood and Lindsey Buckingham were both dating Stevie Nicks.

I only liked guys who liked guys, like Shaun Cassidy.

 Then, in January 1977, "Go Your Own Way" started playing on KSTT Radio.

You can go your own way, go your own way.
You can call it thunder, all the way.

It seemed like they were talking to me personally, telling me that it was ok to break away, follow your own path, and "call it thunder."

I "called it thunder" when I decided to go to college instead of taking a job in the factory, like my parents expected.

When I figured "it" out the summer after my high school graduation: we stop the fight right now, we got to be who we are.

When I rejected the "wife and kids" destiny everyone had plotted out for me, and found the freedom to love.

When I abandoned the Midwest for California.

When I decided to go back to graduate school and get a Ph.D.

You can go your own way, go your own way.
You can call it thunder, all the way.

 Whenever I hear the song today, it sends me back to my junior year at Rocky High, when everything was fresh and new and full of promise, when you could "go your own way" and "call it thunder."

Last night I heard the song at the gym, on the Classic Rock station they play in the free weight room.  I decided to do a blog post on the song that meant so much to me long ago.  So I looked up the lyrics online:

You can go your own way, go your own way.
You can call it another lonely day.

Another lonely day?  WTF?

It's not an anthem to self-awareness at all!  It's about breaking up with a lover, who is now packing up and going away, so it's "another lonely day."

For 40 years, I've been hearing the lyrics wrong.

Well, back to Shaun Cassidy.

Revisiting Brideshead Revisited: Does the groundbreaking portrayal of (temporary) gay love hold up after 40 years? WIth bonus dicks

January 18th, 1982, a Monday night.  I'm lying on the bed in the attic room my brother and I share, reading a book for my Advanced Spanish class.  Significantly it's Ciro Alegria's El mundo es ancho y ajeno: Broad and Alien is the World.  

Link to NSFW version

I always watch tv while studying.  Tonight the only options are two boring movies, MASH (doctors during the Korean War), and something called Brideshead Revisited on PBS.  It turns out to be an adaption of the Evelyn Waugh novel about 1920s Oxford undergrad Charles Ryder (Jeremy Irons) falling in love with the flamboyant, decadent, teddy bear-toting, alcoholic Sebastian Flyte (Anthony Andrews).

They run away to Venice together. They go slumming in Soho, along with Sebastian's sister Julia.  Then Ryder begins a romantic entanglement with Julia, and the outraged Sebastian dumps him and runs off to Morocco. 

 Later Sebastian hooks up with a sleazy German guy named Kurt, and later still he dies.  Ryder can't marry Julia because she's Catholic and he's an atheist, so they just live together.  Later he becomes Catholic.

I'm mesmerized.  In 1982, surrounded by the hetero-horniness of workplace sitcoms, my parents demanding "What girl do you like?", and the preacher at church bellowing about homa-sekshuls, just seeing two men involved in a romance is a revelation.  Sure, no one says "gay," Ryder turns straight, and Sebastian dies, but they walk arm in arm, cuddle, even go nude sunbathing!  And everyone around knows! Even Sebastian's mother.  Even Julia, who tells Ryder that "all our loves are hints and signals," leading us to God.  A same-sex romance leads us to God?  Hear that, Preacher?

40 years have passed.  I've studied a lot of LGBT history and literature, and watched a lot of gay movies, published a lot of books and articles on queering fictional texts, and recently I decided to revisit Brideshead Revisted.

You can't go home again.  Rewatching today,  I strongly dislike Brideshead.  Sebastian is a decadent, flamboyant stereotype who ends up dead.  Ryder may fall in love with him, but then he moves on to Julia.  Evelyn Waugh, like Freud, believed that gayness is a phase -- adolescents, newly potent but forbidden access to the opposite sex, turn to each other.  Their brief period of quasi-romance ends when they move on to "mature" heterosexual love.

In 2008, the BBC aired a new version of Brideshead, with Matthew Goode as Charles Ryder and Ben Whishaw as Sebastian.  This time there's no subtext: Sebastian is gay.  But there's also no romance: Ryder is heterosexual but pretending to be interested in Sebastian to gain access to his vast wealth.


It's more honest -- and there's a lot more nudity -- but nothing can match the joy of seeing same-sex romance on screen for the very first time.

Lots of nudity on RG Beefcake and Boyfriends

17 of David DeCoteau's Wrong Hunks

David Decoteau has devoted much of the last few years to a long series of romantic thrillers for the Lifetime Network,  with female protagonists and plots about "the wrong people."

 Previously his movies always involved hunks hugging in their underwear, although DeCoteau claimed that he was not targeting gay men, and in fact had no idea that gay men existed.  I wanted to know if he is continuing his characteristic "wait, guys who like guys exist?  I had no idea!" homoerotic scenes, but I didn't want to track down and watch all the movies, even on fast-forward.  So I  just checked the cast list on IMDB to see what young men were cast because they look good in their underwear ("for women to look at").

1. The Wrong Child (2016). A boy moves in with a family, claiming to be their long-lost son. But he's not what he seems, naturally.  Starring Johnny Whitaker, Tracy Nelson, Viveca A. Fox (the one who tried to barr men from attending her black male review; "it's only for women! Men don't need to be there!").

And Robbie Davidson as the hunk...um, I mean the wrong child.

2. The Wrong Roommate. (2016). SA college professor moves in with her sister, only to find a girl in the guest house who is not what she seems. With Viveca A. Fox again, William MacNamara, Eric Roberts, and lots of hunks, like Jason-Shane Scott.

3. The Wrong Student (2017).  As far as I can tell from the convoluted plot, a student becomes obsessed with her classmate's boyfriend.  With the usual suspects, including Jason-Shane Scott again.  Several contenders for underwear hunk, but I'm going with Renton Pexa becuase he has an interesting name, and he's a professional model.

4. The Wrong Crush (2017).  A high school girl kills her best friend, and then must keep the secret from her boyfriend.  I guess she's the wrong crush?  Viveca A. Fox again.  Several hunks (not pictured -- I'm running out of space).

5. The Wrong Man (2017).  Her grandfather's caregiver is not what he seems.  An oddly vague title.  How about "The Wrong Gerontologist"?  With Viveca A. Fox, Michael Pare, William Goldman...and as the underwear hunk, Rib Hillis (left).

6. The Wrong Cruise (2018).  A mother and daughter go on a cruise and are kidnapped.  Guess who plays the mom?  Is Vivice A. Fox a contract player? For hunkoids, try Andres Londono (not pictured).

7. The Wrong Friend.  Riley (a girl) becomes friends with Chris  (a boy), but he is not what he seems.  For the hunk, I'm going with Chris, left.  He bviously has abs. Ten to one he has a bastket, too.  DeCoteau always casts them that way.

8. The Wrong Teacher. .  A teacher picks up a young guy, only to discover that he's a student at her schol.  Hey, if he's over 18 and not in her class, what's the problem?   Have a look at Student Philip McElroy's biceps and basekt.

9. The Wrong Stepmom.  Single father David (Corin Nemec) starts dating Maddie, who is not what she seems.  I'm torn -- Leonardo Cecchi is a classic DeCoteau hunk, but Mitchel Hong would add a little diversity to the square-jawed, big-basket white guys.

Ok, here's Leonardo, but DeCoteau owes me somebody black or Hispanic.

10. The Wrong BoyNext Door.  The Boy Next Door is not what he seems.  Travis Burns plays the Boy, and of course he has abs and an underwear bulge that goes halfway to his knees, but I'm going to picture Jeremy Sry.  Buffed and Asian.  Diversity, at last!

11.  The Wrong Mommy.  Oddly enough, there are no children here.  Phoebe's new personal assistant is not what she seems (she wants revenge on Phoebe's mother).  Lots of hunks in this one, but they have all appeared in earlier Wrong movies.  I can't believe they're running out -- 3,000  guys with muscles and big penises arrive in Hollywood every week!

12. The Wrong Tutor.  Eric's new tutor is not what she seems.  Too many hunks to choose from, but for a change, Eric is Black.  So let's go with Nate Wyatt's abs and...such.

13. The Wrong Cheerleader.  Cheerleader Becky starts dating Rob (Dave Meza), who is not what he seems.  Wait -- she's the right cheerleader, he's the wrong boyfriend.  I guess The Wrong Boyfriend was already taken.

 14.  The Wrong House Sitter.  Are they just picking social roles at random?   A lot of hunksin this one, but mostly old pros from earlier movies.  So let's go with John Spink (not pictured, but believe me, he has abs and a big penis.

15  The Wrong Wedding Planner.  Brad's crazy ex manipulates her way into becoming his wedding planner.  For hunks, I looked down the cast list to choose Nathan Kehn, because he's posing with cats.

This isn't as much fun as I thought it would be.  When the plots are interchangeable, the hunks are sort of interchangeable, too: young, muscular, smooth-chested, hung to their knees, willing to use all of their assets to get the job. 

Do you mind if I skip The Wrong Real Estate Agent,  The Wrong Fiancee, The Wrong Barista, The Wrong Postal Carrier, The Wrong Lion Tamer, and The Wrong Landscape Architect so I can look up the cat guy on IMDB?
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