NBC's The New Normal is a delightful show about a not very ordinary gay couple trying to have a surrogate daughter with a strange woman who has an oddball child and an unbelievably bigoted (and funny) grandmother. NeNe Leakes is also somehow involved. As much as it would like us to believe that this is the way the world works today, like most Ryan Murphy shows it is really a celebration of the oddities within all of us. Therefore this weekly feature is both a celebration (and indictment) of all the abnormality contained within it.
Normal: Wanting to do something to get ahead in your career.
Abnormal: Having Matt Bomer shirtless in your apartment and wanting to work on your Smallville spec script instead.
Normal: Watching a sexy movie to get in the mood.
Abnormal: Sorry, straight people don't watch Y Tu Mama Tambien to get in the mood.
Normal: Wanting to have a big family.
Abnormal: Wanting to have three children. No one wants three. They want one or two or like 20, but three? That's how you end up with an awful middle child like Lady Edith.
Normal: Turning schoolyard enemies into eventual friends.
Abnormal: Ever living down the nickname Debbie Dumper.
Normal: Getting advice on how to stop bullies.
Abnormal: Getting advice from a Real Housewife on how to stop bullies. Nene Leakes knows something about beating down mean girls as an adult, now doesn't she?
Normal: Getting to know each other on a first date.
Abnormal: No one admits to being Intersex on a first date. That's nuts.
Normal: A gay man on roller blades.
Abnormal: Finding a gay man on roller blades attractive.
Normal: Fixing up your sad sack friend with a potential mate.
Abnormal: No homosexual on earth would set their sad sack friend up with Matt Freakin' Bomer.
Normal: Having a drag queen teach you about reading.
Abnormal: No drag queen reading tutorial starts without quoting Paris Is Burning.
Normal: Hanging out with people your own age.
Abnormal: That means even though he is Matt Freakin' Bomer that Frank Ocean probably doesn't want to be chilling with him.
Normal: Shaving your hairy belly.
Abnormal: Gay men don't shave, they wax.
Normal: Gay men being versatile.
Abnormal: Being versatile does not mean you hold each other's feet while doing sit ups.
Normal: Exercising in your own house with a shirt off.
Abnormal: If my body looked like Matt Freakin' Bomer's, I wouldn't ever wear a shirt either.
Normal: Telling a shirtless man you're trying to have a conversation with to put on some clothes.
Abnormal: I'm sorry, no gay man would ever tell Matt Freakin' Bomer to put his shirt back on. Never.
Normal: A throw-down reading scene with "To Be Real" in the background.
Abnormal: They finally got something right!
Normal: Wanting to sell children's clothes at the farmers' market.
Abnormal: Doing that and not having someone rich to support you because no one wants to buy those ugly damn clothes.
Normal: Eight-year-olds wanting each other to read The Hunger Games.
Abnormal: Eigh-year-olds wanting each other to read Germaine Greer. Even I don't want to read that!
Normal: Matt Freakin' Bomer having any gay man he wants.
Abnormal: I'm sorry, there is no way Matt Freaking' Bomer would ever get with Gary. Not in a heartbeat. Has Ryan Murphy ever met a gay?
Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan
[Photo Credit: Vivian Zink/NBC]
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The Female Eunuch author claims to have struck up a romance with La Dolce Vita director after he invited her to Italy in 1975 to audition for a role in his 1976 movie Fellini's Casanova.
Greer turned down the part, but subsequently enjoyed a brief relationship with the critically-acclaimed filmmaker, who was married to actress Giulietta Masina from 1943 until his death in 1993.
The author revealed the affair in an article written for Britain's Guardian newspaper, insisting she decided to divulge the details of the secret romance after seeing Oscar-nominated 2009 movie Nine, which was based on Fellini's semi-autobiographical 1963 film 8 1/2.
She writes, "I caught glimpses of Penelope Cruz in a flounced red baby-doll nightie... and Sophia Loren looking like an Aztec mask, and Daniel Day-Lewis getting out of bed with his trousers on, but I was not tempted. I will not have my Fellini rewritten by Arthur Kopit, who wrote the musical, or Anthony Minghella or Michael Tolkin, who wrote the (Nine) screenplay."
She goes on to describe her first sexual encounter with the moviemaker, but admits the romance eventually fizzled out because of her hectic schedule.
She adds, "The relationship was self-limiting because I wasn't available... Sexual athletes are tuppence a dozen. Fellini was a many-sided genius. I do not hope to meet his like again."
Walt Disney animation’s first foray into 3D ‘toon making isn’t just a technical triumph it thankfully also tells the clever story of Bolt (John Travolta). He’s a superstar TV canine who believes the superpowers he displays weekly on his series are for real --especially when it comes to the protection of his master and co-star Penny (Miley Cyrus). One day however the dog is accidentally shipped from his Hollywood soundstage to New York City. Lost alone and confused on the streets of the Big Apple Bolt is still living the show vowing to get to Penny who he believes has been kidnapped by the “green-eyed man.” And so he embarks on a cross-country journey to L.A. to save Penny. Along the way he is joined by an abandoned wily housecat Mittens (Susie Essman) and a TV-loving hamster Rhino (Mark Walton) who believes everything he sees on the tube is ALSO real. Of course Bolt is in for rude awakening when he finds out he is just a regular dog but he still needs to get to Penny -- even if it means she might not be there for him when he returns. Disney is not a studio that generally depends on superstar voices for their animated films but in casting Travolta and tween queen Cyrus they have scored a bullseye. Travolta’s Bolt is a delightful cross between the self-assured superstar and a pooch in denial. The actor doesn’t phone it in but instead creates an original and loveable dog that stands proudly in Disney’s large canon of canine greats. The action scenes created for Bolt’s TV series are lots of fun and the interactions with his traveling companions are choice. As Penny Cyrus is sympathetic sincere and she even gets to sing a duet with Travolta “I Thought I Lost You ” which she co-wrote. The show is nearly stolen though by comedian Susie Essman (Curb Your Enthusiasm) as Mittens -- a smart determined and emotionally wounded pet cat abandoned by her owners and forced to wander the streets alone. And by Mark Walton as the hilarious Rhino the obsessive fanboy hamster who rolls around in his ball. Walton is actually an animator in real life who happened to be so good at voicing Rhino during tests they just gave him the job. Disney vets Chris Williams and Byron Howard capably usher the venerable Disney label into the brave new world of 3D animation and the results are promising -- putting the audience right in the center of Bolt’s universe. The TV series action set pieces are particularly effective in using the technology. It’s not even necessary to see the film in 3D because the whole CG process has come a long way in a few short years and Bolt is one of the best looking most accomplished animated films in memory -- glasses or no glasses. Williams and Howard expertly blend humor pathos and blockbuster-style action scenes effortlessly giving “Bolt” an appeal beyond just the target kid demo.