Tuesday, May 28, 2013

My Hermit Weekend: 'Behind' The 'Development' And It Was A 'Smash'

Most people were barbecuing their hearts out or enjoying their family's company this past holiday weekend, but since I don't like cooking on a grill or my family, I stayed in.  I had three things to watch this weekend: Arrested Development (in preparation for the new season), the series finale of NBC's trouble musical drama Smash, and Behind the Candelabra, Steven Soderbergh's love story between Liberace and Scott Thorson. 

It started innocently enough. 

I started an Arrested Development marathon last weekend, thinking that was enough time to plow through the three short seasons I had on DVD.  Well, I got behind pretty damn quickly.  By the middle of last week, I was only finishing the first season, and I was determined to be completely caught up and watch the new episodes on Sunday.  I couldn't be confused by everyone's obvious, hilarious AD Facebook statuses!  I needed to be in the loop! 

I almost made my goal.  By Sunday afternoon, I was finished with the third season of Arrested Development, and I began watching the new episodes online.  I am the ONLY person in the world who doesn't actually have NetFlix.  I demanded my fiance's username and password, and he was confused by my passion and obvious sleep deprivation. 

I think my marathon initially hurt my views of the new season of Arrested Development.  I am so used to the earlier episodes that their freshness threw me off guard ("I know these characters, but why can't I quote every single line?!?!").  It might be because I am watching them on my computer, and I hate watching things on my computer.  See, I am the oldest 29 year old out there.  Someone needs to walk me through the process of hooking up my househole Wii to my living room television. 

I love the new season.  It is like they never stopped making them episodes, and I am just discovering them.  I am not sure how I feel about how each episode focuses on a different member of the family, but that might change with inevitable repeat viewings.  Am I the only one who feels this way?

Sunday is when things got a bit manic. 

I went over to my friend Megan's house (you know, from Fifty Shades of Suck) to watch HBO's Behind the Candelabra, Steven Soderbergh's ode to the faaaaaaabulous Liberace.  Megan and I were super excited to see some cross-generational butt pirating, and Mr. Soderbergh delivered!

Candelabra, based on the Thorson's memoir, isn't necessarily a biopic, because it primarily focuses on the relationship between Liberace (Michael Douglas) and Thorson (Matt Damon).  We don't learn about Librace's rise to fame or if he had a tumultuous childhood.  We meet the famous pianist when Scott meets him. 

Please and thank you.

To put it mildly, their relationship is weird.  I mean, weird.  Thorson became Librace's young plaything (or Adonis as he repeatedly called), and Liberace showered Scott with a ridiculous lifestyle.  Furs, jewels, gaudy gold, new cars, you name it.  Then Liberace asks Scott to get plastic surgery in order to look like a young Liberace.  Hmmm.  My fiance had a hard time getting me to switch to almond milk, but to each his own, I guess.  I assume Scott felt he had to obey Liberace for lavishing him with such riches. 

Within the first few minutes of the movie, I commented to Megan that I don't remember Michael Douglas NOT phoning it in.  I can't think of the last time I was impressed with him, but he and Damon are great together.  Their chemistry is great.  I expected them to have sex, but I wasn't ready for the...abruptness of the more intimate moments.  First Liberace is showing Scott around the house, and next thing you know, Jason Bourne is banging Gordon Gekko from behind with such gusto and vigor that I heard all of San Francisco collectively spill their pinot grigio. 

I think it's a shame that this wasn't released theatrically.  Not only could have Douglas and Damon generated Oscar buzz, but Debbie Reynolds (as Liberace's mother) could have sneaked in there.  Emmys for everyone!!!  I wasn't ready for how sad the movie was going to be.  Oh, well.  Let's look at Matt Damon some more!

The heir to Farrah Fawcett's feathered hair crown.

You're welcome.

Plus, the movie featured Broadway hunk Cheyenne Jackson.  What more could a man want?!

Xanadu me!

Yesterday, I finally caught up with the season  series finale of NBC's troubled musical drama, Smash, arguably the gayest program I watched this weekend.  Let me get this out of the way now (I always meant to write a separate post about the show's ultimate demise, but I continously got distracted).  I love Smash.  It was one of the shows I had to watch every week.  Sometimes, if I got behind, I reveled in parking my keister on the couch for a mini-marathon. 

The saddest thing about Smash getting canceled is that there won't be a show like this on television again.  At least, not for a while.  You can just see Katharine McPhee-loving fatcat executives sitting back exclaiming, "We can't order this musical drama!  Look at what happened to Smash!  Pass!"  I always thought the show itself got an unjustified amount of press.  Smash is basically Bombshell from Smash.  People loved to trash it, and you know maybe 20% of those people actually watched it.  The bad press became the center of attention. I am sure if you don't watch the show, you won't have any idea what I am talking about, because I am not recapping. 


Basically, by the end of the show, every cast member has a Tony Award.  Except...wait for it...Katharine McPhee!!!  Do you know how happy I was watching the finale and realizing that I will never have to see Karen Cartwright win a Tony Award?!  Karen thinks she can get on a bus from Iowa, land in a Broadway show within the first five minutes of arriving in the Big Apple, and then snatch the trophy from my beloved Megan Hilty?  Get real, sister!  Go back to Iowa.  Ivy was no angel, but she paid her dues. 

What is Hit List even about?  I have been a devout watcher this entire season, and I couldn't begin to give you a detailed description of what that Rent knockoff is.  Lots of bad pop songs and weird 80's-esque blouses for Karen to wear?  Ugh.  I hate you Hit List


Goodbye, Ivy.  I will think of you fondly as I listen to you belt out "Let's Be Bad."

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