Author

Brian Moylan
After getting his master's degree in poetry, Senior Writer Brian Moylan started writing about television and pop culture for Gawker, The Guardian, The Washington Blade and a few other reputable publications. Brian has an honorary PhD in “Jersey Shore” studies from the University of Chicago. He's shared his often hilarious views about the tube on VH1, MSNBC, TV Guide Channel, MTV (Canada), BBC radio, and NPR. He can usually be found at his apartment in New York yelling at the TV and dodging calls from Real Housewives. He is a Taurus and likes long walks on the beach, fried chicken, and almost every reality television program ever created (especially “The Swan”).
  • 'Big Brother' Villain Willie Hantz Arrested Days After Being Thrown Off the Show
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 26, 2012
    It's been a rough week for Willie Hantz. Less than a week after being kicked off of Big Brother for trying to headbutt a fellow contestant, he was arrested in his home state of Louisiana and spent the day in jail. Well, at least he got a bit of practice staying locked away from the outside world before hitting the slammer. Lafayette City Police Department were called to a parking lot near a several bars. Looks like Willie wanted to tie one on after being booted off the show. Maybe he was depressed!  Anyway, they arrived and there was a big fight and then Willie tried to take off in his yellow Camaro (because, of course). They stopped him, he tried to bolt, and they subdued him and arrested him for OWI, which is "operating a vehicle while intoxicated" which is basically DUI but southern or something. The Lafayette police confirmed the arrest and said that Willie posted bail and is now free. Wow, this sounds like a pattern, get into a fight, get in trouble, and then get kicked out back onto the street.  Oh, Willie, I have a feeling this isn't the end of your story, but I have a feeling we're all going to stop caring very soon.  Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan  More: Big Brother Recap: Willie or Won't He? Big Brother Recap: Queso and JoJo Big Brother Recap: A Night at the Races
  • What the Heck Happened to 'Project Runway'?
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 26, 2012
    Guys, did you know that Project Runway is on tonight? Yeah, I know. I almost forgot too. The 10th season premiere was last Thursday night on Lifetime. Yeah, I didn't catch it either. And, for the first time ever, I'm not going to watch this season. What the hell happened to Project Runway? Let's preface this by saying that I used to be a huge fan of the show. I wrote a glowing review of the first episode ever (back when no one was watching) for the newspaper where I worked at the time. I spread the word of my favorite new reality show like I was Tom Cruise selling Scientology. There was something about the characters on the show, the novelty of seeing them make outstanding things in no time at all with no money, and watching very skilled and talented people do something that I could never imagine myself doing. After getting myself and my friends hooked, we threw parties, talked about the show at great length (perhaps too great), and I even sent detailed emails to close friends on Friday mornings breaking down how I felt about each episode. And the rest of America slowly caught on too. Runway was on the cover of magazines. Tim Gunn was a household name with a book deal and his own spin-off. Heidi Klum reinvented herself in a new role. Michael Kors was known for something other than selling all his gear at Marshalls (and that something else was a tangerine hue that is not found in nature). Companies were rushing to sponsor challenges on the show, countless sites were writing recaps, and the fans were clamoring for more, more, more. And now? Nothing. The ratings are holding steady at 3 million viewers which is good for cable and about on par with the final Bravo season (which some claimed the network failed to promote because it knew it was losing the franchise), but even if people are watching, it doesn't have the heat that it once did. Sure, Heidi Klum naked in a pile of scissors (ouch!) is on every bus and phone booth in New York, but Anna Wintour and the staff at Vogue doesn't care anymore. The magazine profiles and editorials have dried up. The recaps have ceased and no one (at least that I know off, among my large group of once-rabid fans) is congregating to watch the show. No one seems to care. So, what exactly happened? There are other greying reality shows (Survivor, American Idol, Top Chef) that show no signs of losing their cultural relevance like Runway has. Here are a few reasons why I'm over the show. Moving to Lifetime: Now, this is has nothing to do with the fact that I think that Bravo, the network that originally aired the show, is somehow better than Lifetime. I'll watch a good show no matter what channel it is on. The problem was that, because of a lawsuit that Bravo waged against The Weinstein Group (who produces the show) the first season of Runway on Lifetime was moved to L.A. and rushed into production. The talent was shoddy, the new production company was unsure of what they were doing and the whole thing suffered. While the season debuted to record ratings the audience slowly trickled away (rare for a reality show, which usually peaks near the finale). Lifetime failed to prove itself with a shoddy, rushed season and people stayed away for good. Lack of Talent: It's always been my conjecture that there is a finite talent pool for shows such as Runway, a small group of truly astonishingly talented designers who are willing to be on a reality show. Churning out 10 seasons over seven years seems to have depleted that pool to nil. The winner of Season 8 (more on her later) wouldn't have even made it half way through Season 4 of the show, a creative high point won by Christian Siriano, arguably the only designer to launch a successful career from this perch. In later seasons the outfits didn't seem as fresh, as original, or as well done as they did in the first few years. Some of that may be because I wasn't as excited about the show as I once was, but I'm convinced that all the good designers have come and gone and all we're left with is backwoods seamstresses and just-graduated FIT young guns. 90 Minutes: I'm sorry, but more than 60 minutes for any reality show is too much. Yes, that goes for The Biggest Loser too. Lifetime tried to milk an extra thirty minutes and it just killed all the dramatic tension and the whiz of the sewing machine against the clock. Because of the extra slog to get through it, Runway would languish at the bottom of DVR for days, sometimes weeks. Too much of a good thing really did it in. Models of the Runway: Even worse than the bloated corpse of a 90-minute episode, Lifetime also tried to tack on another 30 minutes of this show, which was a competition for the models. Sure, it's one thing if you could just ignore it, but decisions about the challenges and how the models were included were starting to effect Runway proper. No more team challenges (we have to include all the girls!) and no more double eliminations (be fair to the girls!) or swapping models (who wants a run off?!) made what should be oil that makes things run smoothly gunk up the whole machine. The Way It Looks: Maybe it's just me or the fuzzy lens of nostalgia, but does the show look worse now? It's kind of like watching a VHS tape of a show you recorded off the television. It's just not crisp, and when I'm trying to look at the clothes, I want it to be as vivid as one of Nina Garcia, Fashion Director of Marie Claire's scowls. The Winners: We need to talk for a minute about Gretchen. Gretchen Jones won season eight of Project Runway and she was awful. Well, she was awful, but her clothes were hideous. The winners of Season 6 and 7 (a million points if you can remember their names, but of course you can't) weren't any better. (PS, it was Irina Shabayeva and Seth Aaron Henderson). The winner of Season 9, Anya Ayoung-Chee, was better, but had barely learned to sew and seemed to only do one type of look well. If someone without talent is going to win, what is the point of the competition at all? This also seems to have exposed a rift on the judging panel where Heidi Klum is looking for fun, wearable things, and Michael Kors and Nina Garcia, Fashion Director of Marie Claire, are looking for fashion with a capital F and bowing to the whims of the trend forecasters, even as it pisses off the viewers. If this show can't figure out what it wants to be, then why are we even watching it? Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan More: Heidi Klum Goes Nude for 'Project Runway' 'Project Runway' Finale Clips! Is 'Fashion Star' Really The New 'Project Runway'?
  • Everything We Know About the Olympics Opening Ceremonies (And Some Things We Don't)
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 26, 2012
    The Opening Ceremonies of the Olympic Games are always a reflection of the country hosting them. Two years ago in Vancouver, we got technological marvels and a peek into the First Nations people of Canada. Four years ago in Beijing, we got a billion dollar spectacle fueled by thousands of people beating on drums and operating those amazing boxes. You thought the ceremony was run by machines, but it was really run by China's largest resource: people. So, what can we expect from London? Something based not on the colonialism that overtook the globe last century, but something based on their most popular exports: music and culture. Yes, it appears as though both James Bond and Voldemort will be in attendance. God save the Queen. Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle, who was tapped to direct the $42 million spectacle, and other organizers pleaded for participants to keep mum about just what is going to happen on Friday, July 27, at 9 PM (which airs in the U.S. on NBC starting at 7:30 PM). However, with countless actors, dancers, technicians, and nearly as many feverish journalists looking for a scoop, it seems like we know most of what is going to happen during the ceremony, if preliminary media accounts (especially a rather detailed one by the Associated Press) are to be believed. If the journalists are right, the show will start off with chimes from the world's largest bell followed by a short film in which James Bond (played by Daniel Craig, but sadly not in his little blue bathing suit) will be knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. A stuntman playing Bond will either parachute or be lowered into the stadium carrying the Olympic torch. (It would be awesome if he passes it off to Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan, and Sean Connery, but I'm not holding my shaken martini.) Then there will be a recitation of speech from Shakespeare's The Tempest (possibly by Kenneth Branagh) that talks about the show's theme, "Isle of Wonders." There will also reportedly be a performance of the William Blake poem "Jerusalem," a well-known national song in the U.K. The performance will depict the idealistic idyll of the British countryside both past and present, including a mosh pit at one of their notorious music festivals. That will give way to depiction of the other side of England: the dark factories and mines. Reports of chimney sweeps and miners going into the stadium make it sound like an number out of Mary Poppins (just wait for her) or Billy Elliot: The Musical. There will supposedly be a huge set of the River Thames and scenes from British history, including the founding of the British national healthcare system (and with Michelle Obama in attendance, will this be a nod to Obamacare?) and the import of Caribbean workers to the isle. It's been widely speculated that there will be a scene featuring many popular characters from British literature, which will culminate in a battle between Harry Potter villain Voldemort and the infamous supernanny Mary Poppins, who seems to have sprouted even more magical powers since we last saw her on film. Oh, the British do know how to make something campy and fun. In fact, I honestly believe they invented campy and fun. Not only should it be on full display, but the Brits should get a gold medal for camp as well. The whole performance will reportedly conclude with Paul McCartney leading the crowd in a sing-along version of "Hey Jude," which will be easy for every human on earth with a radio and a pair of ears, even if they have no idea what the words exactly mean. In fact the entire musical set list (which will be remixed by the duo Underworld into a continuous track) was leaked to the press. This 80-plus song list, which is what will play mostly as the athletes from around the world are entering the stadium, includes British acts from Led Zeppelin to Handel, from Amy Winehouse to the theme for the BBC News, and includes many popular acts like David Bowie, Muse, Blur, Eric Clapton, The Who, Rolling Stones, Duran Duran, The Clash, and (a bit controversially) the Sex Pistols. Sadly, the Spice Girls aren't on the list, but I'm going to keep pretending that doesn't mean they're not going to "Zig a Zig Ah" their way onto the field. As for the final part of the ceremony, when the Olympic cauldron is lit and the Queen declares the games open — well, that is just about the only thing that is being kept a secret. Celebrity soccer — oh, I'm sorry, football — star David Beckham has been hinting about his role in the ceremony, and will allegedly be the last person to bring the Olympic torch into the stadium, though not the one to light it. That honor usually goes to a past or present Olympian (Beckham was not tapped to play footie with the British team in competition this year). Some say Muhammad Ali, who lit the cauldron in 1996 at the Atlanta games, will be involved somehow, since he's been in London with Beckham, but that seems unlikely since the boxing legend is an American. Maybe they're going to let "the colonies" get in on the action. We'll have to wait until Friday to find out who it really is (wouldn't it be great if for no good reason it was Graham Norton or Russel Brand or Danger Mouse?) but maybe it's better that at least one thing should be a surprise. Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan More: Muhammad Ali in London as Olympics opening ceremony rumours mount Spice Girls Might Reunite For Summer Olympics in London Rafael Nadal Drops Out of the Olympics: This Sucks!
  • Kristen Stewart's Next Romance: Alex Pettyfer Tapped for 'Cali'
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 25, 2012
    Right in the middle of all the ruckus about pout queen Kristen Stewart cheating on Robert Pattinson, her Twilight costar, boyfriend, and imaginary cuddle toy of millions of young ladies, Hollywood plopped another leading man right into her lap. It's stripper Alex Pettyfer. And he's even cuter than Kristen's last bit of man candy. According to Variety, Alex, whose abs made more of an impact on Magic Mike than his acting did, is in final negotiations to play Stewart's love interest in Cali, a grimy action picture where they play a couple that sells a fake snuff film (a porno where someone is killed at the end, for all the non-pervs out there) and take off with a ton of money. Sounds sunny and uplifting! At least when they're playing lovers, she'll have a reason to cuddle up next to Alex (and his abs) without alerting the tabloids. Alex, another Brit, does have a history of sleeping with costars, like his ex, Diana Agron from Some Crappy Movie About Aliens No One Saw, and his fiance and Magic Mike cohort Riley Keough. But Riley is Elvis' granddaughter so, sorry KStew, but until you are the heiress to a blue suede shoe fortune, you're probably out of luck. And director Nick Cassavetes is like 50-something so there's no way Kristen will be getting her Cali Roll on with him like she was with Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders. That's got to be a relief for Rob. Now, if only all these directors could do something about her ever-present pout? Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan More: Kristen Stewart Cheated on Robert Pattinson with 'Snow White' Director Kristen Stewart Apologizes to Robert Pattinson: 'I Love Him, I Love Him' Elvis' Granddaughter Riley Keough Engaged to Alex Pettyfer
  • Christian Bale Visits Victims of Aurora Shooting Tragedy - PICS
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 24, 2012
    After a tragedy at the midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises in Aurora, Colorado, it seems like the Dark Knight himself is rising to the occasion. Christian Bale, who stars in the film, went to visit some of the dozens wounded in the shooting spree today, according to the Denver Press. Pictures arose on Twitter of Bale smiling with victim Carey Rottman and medical staff at the Swedish Medical Center where many of the victims were being treated. Bale was freed up for the visit thanks to cancellations of press events and world premieres of the movie following the tragedy last Thursday night. There was a large public outcry, mostly on the internet, of people who thought the star should pay his respects to those that were hurt and the 12 that passed away after James Holmes allegedly opened fire in the packed theater. Warner Bros. released a statement saying that Bale was there of his own volition, not representing the studio. It seems like the man who plays a hero certainly knows how to act like one. Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan More: Christian Bale Releases Statement, Asked to Visit Injured Victims Christopher Nolan Responds to Aurora Tragedy Alleged Aurora Shooter James Holmes Makes First Court Appearance
  • 'Real Housewives of New York' Recap: Dirty Old Men
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 24, 2012
    AAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Oh, good morning, guys. I just got up. Last night I sat down on my couch at 9 PM with my notebook and pen to watch the Real Poppy Eaters of Somnabulist Central and I just passed out. I was in a deep dark sleep where I had dreams about waxed eyebrows, blindfolded wine drinking with Balki Bartokomous, and my eyes bulging and bulging and bulging until they finally fell out of my head. You know, nothing of consequence. Nothing at all of consequence. Oh, that was the episode last night? Sorry, I must have been sleeping. Either that or thinking this boring patter is nothing but a dream, a sad stale dream where I don't even wake up with an erection or anything. It's like when you wake up in the middle of the night to poop and you think you know what's going on but you don't and you fall asleep in some fever dream while sitting on the pot. That is what watching Real Housewives of New York is like these days. There is just absolutely no tension at all. LuAnn and her fiancee Balki try to have a wine tasting and nothing fun happens. Heather tries to talk to LuAnn about how she's a self-centered egoist and nothing happens. Carole goes to visit her famous designer friend Rajana Khan and all we learn is that LuLu is asking for free dresses, which, a million, jillion duhs. I care about as much about the migration habits of Newfoundland geese or your neighbor Alice's hangover after she went to Applebee's and ordered five Skinnybee Margaritas. I care about none of those things and I care about none of these things. Oh, I just don't care. Make me care, ladies, make me care. I think that's why we got a "This season on Real Housewives of Slumbertown USA" full of screeching and fighting and brow beating and Ramona rolling her eyes around and around in her head, the Charybdis to the Scylla of her mouth. It's like they're telling us, "It's coming, it's coming so please stay tuned," and all of us are going, "Well, just show us the good bits! We're sick of Eye Waxing with Heather. So, there are only two things about this episode that I even care to talk about. One of them is my favorite Sonja Tremont Morgan, of the Upper East Side Morgans and an heiress to a great toaster oven fortune. Well, she hopes this is the case. Now, I love Sonja T. Morgan with all of my heart and all of the soul I haven't sold to Satan to stay thin, but I gotta say, I'm a little worried about her career. Sonja may have a taste for luxury (and luxury may have a taste for her) but I'm afraid she doesn't really have a head for business. Heather calls her friend, some fancy designer who makes fonts and stuff, and asks him to do a favor for Sonja. A favor! This is a business favor that Heather got for free because this guy, Smarty McMBA, helped Heather spend a lot of Puffy Combs and Jennifer Lopez and Beyonc(option+e)'s money. This is not a favor that you get for free, really, but Sonja is getting it for free because Heather is helping her out and, let's face it, Sonja isn't really rolling in cash. Smarty McMBA comes up with some fonts for Sonja and she's like, "This guy doesn't know me, he doesn't get me, how can he design for me?" Which, true. But also, um, Sonya (which is how her logo is currently spelled) you get what you pay for. So, just take one of his designs and be happy. Then when they start pushing her about how soon she needs it, she says she's about to go into production and gives them a bunch of vague answers. This is mostly because the only thing Sonja wants to talk about in public is her sex life. That is just out there on display like the soiled sheets on her clothesline. But anything that has to do with her business or her family, oh no no no no no NO, we must not speak of that in public. Oh no. I think the real reason is that Sonja needs some cash. She's on her last 10 packets of Ramen and put all her eggs to broil in one toaster oven and this b***h better pay dividends now or she's going to be sending her interns for second hand donuts at the bakery. Oh, if Sonja could only marry well...again. Next:
  • 12 People Who Really Should Do 'Dancing with the Stars' (But Probably Never Will)
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 24, 2012
    For all of you people who religiously follow Dancing with the Stars (hey, mom!) you know that this upcoming season of the show will announce its cast of returning all-stars and fan favorites on July 27th. I know that too, but, guess what? It kind of bores me. I could prepare a list of who I really want to see come back, but it would read like this, "Drew Lachey, if he has nothing better to do. I guess, Ricky Lake. Kelly Monaco has to be available, right?" That's boring! No one wants to read that. Instead, I decided to come up with my absolute dream cast for Dancing with the Stars. May it serve as inspiration to the producers for the next season. Yeah, none of these people would ever really do it (except for Charo, whose manager should be getting a call right now). And here we go! Anderson Cooper: The only thing more awkward than watching one of the newly-out anchor's onscreen giggle fits would be watching him try not to blush while wearing one of the chest-baring outfits. Lark Voorhees: Lisa Turtle won a dance competition with The Sprain on Saved by the Bell. Just imagine what she could do with a fox trot. Pee-Wee Herman: No, not Paul Reubens. I want him to never not be in character, and to choreograph every style to "Tequila." Laura Bush: Republican ladies do really well on this show (see Bristol Palin), so what about a Republican first lady! Also, her husband would be in the audience and she could dance with his secret service escort. Genius! Kroy Bierman: This show loves a reality star and it loves football players. Well, there's only one that we can think of who is both! And Kim Zolciak gets to pick out his booty-baring outfits. Martha Stewart: You might think this ex-convict might be stiff, but just imagine what her dances would look like if she applied the same single-minded dedication to them that she does setting a Thanksgiving table. Snooki's Baby: It will barely be able to walk (and knowing his mother, he probably won't be very coordinated) but man, wouldn't it be cute to watch him fist pump? Dolly Parton: There is nothing this lady couldn't do. Also, she could write her own songs, or sing "Jolene" while doing the Viennese Waltz! She might have some obstacles (namely two) while trying to get her arms set in the right carriage. Jean-Claude Van Damme: What are fight scenes other than a well-choreographed series of kicking? And he could probably stand to lose a few pounds. Noah Cyrus: Sure, everyone is paying attention to Miley and Billy Ray, but what about her zany younger sister? She could be the youngest to ever take the crown. And she could do it wearing
  • 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire' Casts Jena Malone: 5 Badass Babes Who Could Tutor Her
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 23, 2012
    There is that moment in every kung fu movie in which the hero is taught the ways of fighting by a wise master (or several wise masters). The fighter takes all the skills he or she can learn from their mentors and becomes greater than the sum of their parts. Think about Kung Fu Panda, after Po masters the dumpling trick. Well, Jena Malone — who has just been officially cast as Johanna Mason in the Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire — is going to have to start eating her dumplings. I wasn't necessarily thrilled about the news, considering Johanna is my favorite character and is portrayed in the book as a tough girl with a lot of fight in he — traits that we haven't seen yet from indie darling Malone. Instead of getting mad about it — after all, Malone could prove to be perfect for the part, much like Katniss herself, Jennifer Lawrence — I've assembled five badass lady teachers to school Ms. Malone before her big role. If, and only if, she can learn the skills from these broads will she be able to take on the role of my favorite axe-wielding Tribute. Ripley from Alien: Johanna Mason supposedly lasted through her first Hunger Games and comes back to compete again to protect a younger girl from being killed in the arena. Who does this sound like other than the indefatigable space ass-kicker Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver), who battled the baddies through three films and delivered the best action-capping line of all time? Everyone will want to stay away from this bitch. Skill: Survival. LeeLoo from Fifth Element: The first time we meet Johanna in the book, we learn that she is not only well known for her beauty, but also for her love of being totally naked. It's hard to fight to the death when wearing next to nothing, but this often-buff alien savior played by Milla Jovovich makes it seem easy to kick ass in nothing but boob bandages. Skill: Nudity. Selina Kyle from The Dark Knight Rises: Sure, Anne Hathaway looked really damn good while shoving her stiletto down a villain's throat, but it's not what she wore while beating the baddies, it's what she said. We need our Johanna Mason to not only to be tough, but mean, sarcastic, and just a little bit ironic. Skill: Quippiness. Gogo Yubari from Kill Bill: The legend is that Johanna Mason won her first Hunger Games by pretending to be weak and frail so that everyone forgot about her, but then killed them all when they underestimated her. There is only one lady in film who looks both menacing and innocent at the same time. If only she used an axe, like Johanna, instead of some crazy spikey ball thing. Skill: Innocence. JWOWW from Jersey Shore: This girl has the whole Johanna Mason package: She likes to show off her body, can land a punch, is highly sexual, is better in a battle than most of the boys, and can survive the booze death arena of Seaside Heights, New Jersey. Seriously, she would probably make a much better Johanna Mason in the movie than Jena Malone. Skill: Everything. Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan More: Jena Malone in Early Talks for Johanna Mason 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire' Role 'Hunger Games: Catching Fire': Sam Claflin Reportedly Cast as Finnick Odair 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' Nabs Amanda Plummer for Wiress
  • 'Big Brother' Recap: Willie or Won't He?
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 23, 2012
    Gosh, golly, juniper berries, boys and girls, what a season of Big Brother it is turning out to be! We're already on week two and we've had some serious gameplay, alliances, reversals, coaches, kicks in the face, the world's first "slop date," and Willie, the incredible imploding Big Brother contestant (for kids aged 8 and up). Spoiler alert: Willie got his ass booted off the show last night. Yes, Willie is gone, and to that I say, "Peace, sucka!" The problem with people like Willie is that they use bullying and intimidation to get their way in life. They make a big loud stink in line at the McDonald's that their hashbrowns aren't crispy enough (and really, that is never true because Mickey D's hashbrowns are manna from heaven fried in God's love) and he just yells and chest thumps and screams and next thing you know he has a whole Big Breakfast for free. I just hate people like that. Well, finally, on Big Brother, after two seasons of Evel Dick, that behavior didn't pay off in Big Brother. This show is now officially better than real life. Willie flew into a stupid rage because no one in the house would talk to him and he headbutted Joe and then Big Brother himself was like "Hey, I just met you, and you are crazy. Stop headbutting people, don't call us maybe." The real reason I think Willie went stomping around looking for a fight like a soccer hooligan on St. Sebastian's Day (that means nothing, I just made it up) is that no one was really that intimidated by him. Britney sat him down and was basically like, "Your game sucks, you are going to be voted out of this house, don't talk to me or my other players because you are a jerk." He was all, "I know I'm a jerk, but this is an individual game, so I'm going to continue to be an individual jerk. I know what I'm doing." Um, obviously you don't know what you're doing because you screwed up in week one by playing too hard and alienating everyone and now you're screwed. So, Willie, stop being a jerk and listen to Britney. But he doesn't, and Britney isn't scared of him. Neither is Janelle. No one is, because he has absolutely no power in this game. "It's an individual game," he says. Yes, that is true. But it is a game where individuals have to do things to make people like, trust, or rely on them and if you don't do any of those things, you will be evicted as an individual. God, Willie is stupid. So, he's sitting at the table calling Britney and JoJo (who you would think is a female rapper based on her name, but for some strange reason she is not) and saying, "This house is full of [blanks]." Now, the blank is either "pussies" or "bitches." It's one or the other, or it could be both. We don't know, because Big Brother has subjected this word to a pocket in space time so that we only hear blankness. They have been sucked into a black hole of vulgarity. Then Joe comes by and is like, "You're the only [blank] I see in this house," and Willie, sick that everyone is making fun of him, that he has no friends, that no one will talk to him, that both Frank and Shane have better abs than he does, and that he is surely going home, flies into a rage. Willie is so arrogant and thinks so highly of himself, that he just can't fathom being on the bottom and when confronted with the abundant evidence of his loserdom, he butts Joe in the head and gets his ass a one-way ticket home, do not pass the Chenbot, do not collect $200. What else happened? Oh, there was an MC Hammer-inspired coach's challenge where the coaches had to wear awful baggie pants and scurry back and forth stacking piles of dollah bills y'all, dollah dollah bills y'all. There was a lot of talk about how Britney really wanted to win to get rid of Willie so I thought for sure that was the editor telling us that she was going to take it, but she blew it early on. Dan threw the competition because he has a brunette girl and something, something, something. Who knows. Who cares. Not I. Eventually Boogie won, but then stepped off his balance beam before hitting his button (which in some European languages is a euphemism for premature ejaculation, something that Mike Boogie probably already knows from that time when he went to Prague) and so Janelle wins a sort of empty victory. She doesn't trade anyone, instead she gives a key to the blonde girl. What's her name? (Checks my notes.) Ashley. Oh, of course it's Ashley. Oh, I should know Ashley because she's the one who Ian took out on a slop date! Ian has been diagnosed with an acute case of Bonkers. This is a disease that affects about one in 10,000 Americans but affects at least one in 10 Big Brother housemates. Symptoms include: making no sense at all, being weird, exhibiting odd physical feats to the delight and consternation of others, and coming up with increasingly bizarre ways to pass the time. The latest manifestation of Ian's disease was to ask Ashley out on a "slop date." Remember when Eric, America's Player, took that girl with the squeaky voice out on a date in the back yard during BB 8? Well, this was kind of like that, except that the two of them got all dressed up and went into the little club room where the lighting is all wonky and everything that is filmed in there looks like it's happening in that weird back room on Cheers. They ate slop and Ian tried to explain chemistry to Ashley, which is sort of like trying to explain The Secret to a loaf of Nine-Grain Bread. "Is organic chemistry when you buy it at the farmer's market?" Ashley asks. "Well, the difference between organic and inorganic chemistry is that organic chemistry has carbon," Ian says. "Carbon? What's that? My ex-boyfriend used to wear Axe Body Spray Carbon. Is that like the same thing?" "Well, it probably has carbon in it." "Like a pencil." "Yes, like a pencil." "So, organic chemistry is the chemistry of pencils?" "Um, sure. Would you, um, do you want to make out?" "OK!" But they didn't make out, they just stared lovingly into each others' eyes, with Ian hoping this would be the day, the day that a girl kissed him and broke the curse and he was cured of his Bonkers for good. But it wasn't. It wasn't this day. It wasn't any day, but he still holds out hope that one bright, shining moment she will kiss him on his slop-scented lips and the clouds will part and he will hear the laugh of Mike Boogie cackling in his ears for 30 whole seconds before he passes out and wakes up a normal sane person with a bloody nose. Coincidentally, that is also the same exact thing that happens when Willie headbutts you. Should have gone for that option, Ian. OH! Because there was Willie Dramz, Frank and his golden weave made out of unicorn tails and compliance didn't get to nominate anyone. Who should he put up? I'd go with Wig, just for that awful hair, and Danielle, to get Dan out of the game. Or, I'd go with Joe and JoJo just so that we could say Joe JoJo and if there wasn't enough of them, we could ask for Mo' Joe JoJo. That's a good reason to nominate people, right? Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan [Photo Credit: CBS] More: 'Big Brother' Recap: Fruit Loops 'Big Brother' Recap: Ain't That a Kick in the Head? 'Big Brother' Recap: A Night at the Races
  • Real Housewives in Real Life: A Chat About 'The Queen of Versailles'
    By: Brian Moylan Jul 23, 2012
    For anyone who has ever watched an episode of any of the Real Housewives franchise, they know that the program is supposed to be about rich ladies, all of their things, and how they attain wealth. Well, those things...and throwing drinks at anyone who dares call you phony. Sure, some of these fake-titted blondes are dealing with bankruptcy, unemployment, and spouses who can't pay child support, but they still do it from the inside of their onyx McMansions, hiding the moral and financial poverty behind a facade of bling. So what happens when you have the realest Real Housewife of all? And what happens when she loses everything, including the biggest house in America?  That's the question that director Lauren Greenfield asks in her new documentary The Queen of Versailles. The movie follows Jackie Siegel and her husband David Siegel, owner of Westgate, who made his fortune selling time shares mostly to working class and middle class families, as they build the largest single home in America. When we first meet Jackie she's exactly out of Real Housewives central casting: she likes small dogs, dresses her twins in matching outfits, and has an unhealthy penchant for low-cut tops and animal prints. She has eight children with Siegel and the two of them were building a 90,000 square foot replication of the palace at Versailles for their family outside Orlando. It is all marble, antiques, taxidermy, and the sort of things that even a Real Housewife might find gaudy. But at the center of it all is Jackie, who Greenfield first met at a party in Miami when she was shooting Donatella Versace. "Jackie is a charismatic character," Greenfield says of the woman from blue collar upstate New York who worked as a model and was Mrs. Florida before marrying Siegel. "In a way, she’s full of contradictions, even though she lives this kind of fantasy life of jets and castles, and she also has a kind of down-to-earth quality and a generosity of spirit and an openness, and was willing to share her life." The funny thing is, as Jackie and David shared their lives with the camera starting in 2008, when America was still riding high on the real estate bubble, their lives started to change. When the economy crashed, mostly due to junk mortgages, it turns out that David's company was running mostly on junk mortgages. As their fortunes decreased, Versailles was put on the market half-finished and the once flush couple had to struggle with life without the countless maids, nannies, and staff members. Their once glitzy house was now covered in dog turds and Jackie tells the camera that she never would have had so many children if she didn't think she'd have the staff to care for them all. For any Real Housewives fan, it seems like we're finally getting our revenge and the rich are getting their due. But Greenfield never intended the movie to be akin to reality television. "I don't really watch much TV," she says. "I’m really interested in our cultural obsession with wealth, and I put reality TV into that category. I do watch a lot of Keeping Up with the Kardashians at the gym, and I’m fascinated by the way we sensationalize and idealize wealth. In a way, that is one of the reasons I wanted to start [this movie], to show wealth in a different way, to show it in a real way, in cinema verity way, not a constructed 'Isn’t life wonderful?' totally fake way." The film is going to get a chance to shed some light on that fake world of perceived wealth. Bravo, the home of the Real Housewives and other big-house-glorifying shows like Million Dollar Listing, has purchased the TV rights to air Queen of Versailles. "I think it’s so great," Greenfield says about the acquisition. "It’s not preaching to the converted in the art house, it’s regular people who love watching these people all the time, this kind of person, and then to get to peel back the onion and see a real life. For me, it’s really about what the implications of our obsession with wealth and consumerism are. And I think that part of the reason we’re so interested in more and more stuff is because of the influence of popular culture, and I put reality TV and advertising in that group." But it's not all champagne riches and caviar dreams for Greenfield. She, Bravo, Magnolia Pictures, and others are facing a lawsuit from David Siegel himself, who doesn't like the way the movie ends. Greenfield says he wants it to end with him being triumphant and returning back to his riches. Instead, it ends with his company facing bankruptcy, his current house in disarray, and his dream house half-built and decaying, his dream of seeing the fireworks at Disney World through his window nothing but a fantasy that the audience sees, but he never will. It's like the tragedy that is lurking below the surface of every episode of Real Housewives, but it's a tragedy that Greenfield brings right up to the surface and makes it relatable for the audience, no matter how big their house. If it says anything about where Jackie stands, she's helping Greenfield promote the movie and just appeared on the Today show to get people out to the theater this weekend. Oh, and she's interested in being in Real Housewives. I'd expect nothing less. Follow Brian Moylan on Twitter @BrianJMoylan [Photo credit: Magnolia Pictures] More: Sundance 2012: 'Queen of Versailles' Is the Ultimate 'Real Housewives' Tale Summer Movie Alternatives: It's Not Just Comic Book Action Blockbusters 'Real Housewives of New York' Recap: Fake Leg Fall Down