Archive for April, 2008

Amanda is (Meep!) Not So Quiet, After All

April 29, 2008

The Bachelor Episode 7 Recap: Well! Do you think the term “douchebag” translates across cultures? Heh. Either way, I’m sure Matt got Amanda’s point last night. Though we all knew Amanda was next in line to go, she, apparently, did not realize this. And boy, was she mad!

Before we get to the ugly (yet hilarious) denouement, though, let’s remember the happy times. So! Three lucky ladies headed to Barbados this week. Shayne, in her delightful floppy hat, continued to charm Matt, who has referred to her in the last few episodes as his “little monkey.” Aww! But Matt has some concerns: Is Shayne’s ditziness a put-on or, er, is that really the way she is? Can she indulge his deep yearning to discuss the ins and outs of our upcoming presidential election? (Note to Matt: If political discussions are really what do it for you, maybe you should have kept that Karl Rove aide you eliminated in Week 1. Just sayin’!) I’m not sure how I would respond if someone was basically questioning whether I’m smart enough to make a good partner, but Shayne remained cheerfully confident and insisted she had nothing to prove.

On to Chelsea, who fared less well. Much less well. She continued to enforce her No-Romance rule and, well, Matt said it best himself after his encounter with a sympathetic sea turtle: “The turtle was closer to me physically than Chelsea. I had better eye contact with the turtle.” An aside: It was kind of a nice change to see this truly awkward date. I mean, the date seemed hellish and that was real. The Bachelor tends to gloss over moments like that with champagne and rose petals. Anyway, as she did a few episodes ago (when she wrote her own fantasy suite card), Chelsea got nervous and totally overcompensated for her earlier lack of affection. This time, she donned a slinky “night dress” as Matt called it (and WTF was up with those slo-mo-ish shots of her getting changed? Seriously?) The thing is, though, how does that help, really? It momentarily makes things better, but it seems like Chelsea has a problem and I don’t think it has all that much to do with the other women. (Remember her hand-holding phobia? And even when she supposedly poured out her heart at dinner, she still wasn’t looking Matt in the eye.) Anyway, I’m no shrink (ha!) but I think her issues run deeper than she’s letting on and the “night dress,” like her earlier fantasy suite trick, is just a band-aid.

So Amanda, who had tried to express herself on her date, was genuinely shocked at her elimination. And I was shocked at how she handled it—didn’t expect that from a gal from Niceville, Fla. (I have to say, I laughed out loud when she let loose with the D-word.) So, was her earlier meekness an act? Or does that kind of outrage just naturally emerge when we’re scorned? Also—did she always use “like” so much between like every like other like word like? But the painful encounter between her and Matt just illustrated that you can’t argue your way out of dumped. And if you push enough, you’ll just hear the horrible truth, which no one really wants to hear. In this case, Matt finally said: “I feel for you. I just don’t feel for you enough.” Ouch.

So in two weeks, London actually does call! Finally! The ladies are off to meet Matt’s family in the U.K. and then someone is getting a ring. So, who will it be: Shayne or Chelsea? And, who should it be?

Oh and another thing: For the past few weeks, the photos section of the ABC Web site has been worthless, so the boring headshot will have to suffice.

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The Hills: Hype Machine Keeps on Rollin’

April 29, 2008

The ladies of The Hills have landed on the cover of Rolling Stone. To be honest, I don’t know if I can bear to read the accompanying article. The more I learn about these people outside of the show, the less I like the show. But apparently, the above cover-shot-in-panties is historic because LC and Heidi haven’t posed together in more than a year. (Still, they reportedly did not exchange a word during the nine-hour photo shoot.) So there you have it. I have to go lie down now.

Dates With The Past Are So Totally Overrated

April 29, 2008

photo by MTV

Don’t you hate it when you go on a date with the past and it’s completely disappointing? Like the past is all pale and wan, and not really interested in you and maybe still reeling from its break-up with Hayden Panettiere? Last night on The Hills, Lauren went on just such a date with her former Laguna Beach crush, Stephen Colletti. But before that, there was a housewarming party at the new LC-Lo-Audrina pad, which is so unfairly spacious, sunny, and beautiful that it made me want to punch the walls of my dusty third-floor walk-up in Queens. Anyway! The party was chock-full of the Ghosts of Boyfriends Past. (Seriously, that house is going to need an exorcism.) Not only was Stephen (normally incredibly cute, but looking sickly last night) there, but also Brody (with now-ex GF Cora Skinner), Jared (the personal trainer and one-time Whitney date), and Justin Bobby.

Poor Audrina, relegated to the guest house and somehow wearing a backless turtleneck (?), seemed to understand that her exile was now complete. She even mentioned to JB that perhaps she should look for a place of her own (um, a little late?). When Lauren and Stephen finally went on their “date,” it was a whole lotta nothing. I mean: Nothing. They caught up. Yawn. When Stephen drove her home, they had a boring convo about LC’s high school curfew, but MTV played some faux-meaningful pop song to fool us into thinking it was all leading somewhere. But no. (It seemed like they were desperately trying to fill space because nothing happened.) As Lauren later explained to Lo: “When I’m out with him, I feel like I’m in high school. But I’m not in high school anymore.” That’s right, Lauren. You’re in college now. (And maybe you should try to finish up? You’re 22, after all.) So what did we learn? Well, don’t go on a date with the past. Especially don’t ask the past to accompany you to a Wilco concert at McCarren Park Pool in August. Because the past is a real jerk sometimes and that’s why you’re not together anymore. Just get a puppy instead—like Lauren does next week!

Oh and another thing: Best underminer-y line of the night goes to Lo: “Brody’s girlfriend is very pretty with very large breasts.” Runner up: Spencer teasing Stephanie about her semi-formal date. (I’m not recapping the Heidi-Spencer-She-Pratt subplot because it was so utterly pointless and staged and, worse, flat-out boring, that I can’t bear to re-live it. Sorry.)

Meet The Bachelor?

April 23, 2008

Entertainment Weekly blogger Mandi Bierly theorizes that Amanda (or ABC) hired “fake parents” because Amanda’s real parents were “too shy to be filmed for that long.” Makes sense because even after the prank was revealed, we barely saw the real parents. Made me think of past family visit drama (Remember when Officer-Gentleman Lt. Andy Baldwin had to meet Amber’s aunt instead of her AWOL parents? She got the boot that week.) It really is a lot to ask of your parents, to meet your BF (awkward under the best of circumstances) in front of the world—-or whoever still watches The Bachelor. I’d have to hire some fake parents myself because the real ones would not be game. No way. My dad is a cop, which could provide some fun polygraph action, but my parents would be all, “Good luck with that. Don’t bring those cameras around here, ‘kay? Thanks.” Tell me, if you ever found yourself in the Final Four, do you think your parents would be up for meeting The Bachelor?  

The Bachelor: There Will Be A Proposal!

April 22, 2008

The Bachelor Episode 6 Recap: Not unexpected, right? I felt either Noelle or Amanda would be leaving us last night because Amanda faded into the background after winning the First Impression rose and Noelle just started getting to know Matt last week. Amanda likely saved herself with the most dragged-out cringe-worthy prank in Bachelor history! But before we get to that, I give you … Lorenzo Lamas!

I thought Daddy Lamas had sunk Shayne when he announced (over a cheese platter, no less!): “I think it was the idea of being on television that was really enticing to her.” Um, thanks, Dad! But on the upside, at least he didn’t bring out the laser pointer (“flaw finder”) he used as a judge on that reality show “Are You Hot?” Because I think that would have really freaked Matt out. Anyway! Shayne’s mom was delightfully kooky and her younger sister is also gorgeous. Shayne herself looked particularly fetching. (I wonder what shade of blush she uses? Want it.)

Chelsea also looked stunning on her family visit. There’s always at least one lass on The Bachelor who has a Hard Time Opening Up (these types usually crack and start using the “L-word” with abandon on the fantasy date). So maybe Chelsea will start spilling her feelings next week.

Amanda really pulled out all the stops, hiring actors to play her parents. (Something tells me this was ABC’s idea?) Matt handled it all extremely gracefully, even when Fake Mom caressed him and shoved her ample bosom in his face. But the prank just went on way too long, I thought. My question: How in the hell did Amanda get through all that without hiccuping once?

And Noelle, sweet Noelle. Her family got so excited that Matt was “taller than grandpa!” But it was easy to see that he’d already formed stronger connections to the other ladies. So, it’ll be three fantasy dates in Barbados next week. If I had to guess (and I do, clearly) I’d say Amanda is next to go, unless she hires some fake hotel staff members to take her and Matt to a fake fantasy suite that’s really just a dingy room with mice running around and no electricity and a dirty mattress on the floor. God, that would be so funny. Except not.

Oh and another thing: I guess the big (and oft-repeated) news last night was that Matt does indeed propose. He’s a stand-up guy, our Brit.

The Hills: Would You Like Some Judgement With Your Grapefruit?

April 22, 2008

Photo Courtesy MTV

Ladies, we’ve all been there. You reconnect with an ex for some godforsaken reason (like boredom). Maybe you even fool yourself into being slightly excited about this development. After all, your ex is a good time, a fun guy to have drinks with, hang with (maybe even take a motorcycle ride with!). And he’s changed! He’s stopped drinking, stopped burping, stopped making out with other girls in front of you—for one night at least. So the next morning, before you can help yourself, you’re confiding the details to your friend. The judgey one. (You know the one.) The one who wrinkles her nose, gets up on her high horse, and acts like you’re clearly an idiot. And she would never be so dumb/desperate.  

Lauren played the Judgey Friend last night (she’s getting quite comfortable in that role) on The Hills. Props to Audrina for gently reminding LC about her own nasty habit of recycling boyfriends. To which Lauren said: “I stopped going back to Jason.” Yea, you did. Because he got engaged to someone else right in front of you. How quickly the Judgey Friend forgets! Sheesh.

The ex at the center of the drama, of course, was Justin Bobby, who made his much-anticipated return last night, looking like Indiana Jones in his hat and leather jacket. Shockingly, JB did seem much more on the ball this time around. He actually listened to what Audrina said and even responded! He was also an enthusiastic part of The Most Awkward Table Eva, a historic event that took place at Goa. Other participants included: Heidi, the She-Pratt, Lo, Lauren, and Audrina. The Most Awkward Table Eva was truly a treat. Of course, Lauren ruined it all by bolting. (Seriously, though, how could Heidi think everything would be fine? “Old water under the bridge,” eh? Not quite. Even Spencer, who is amazingly deluded, isn’t that deluded.)

Anyway, I feel bad for Audrina, now the odd woman out. Hearing Lo and Lauren cackle (seriously cackle!) about their plans to torture her future boyfriends was frightening. It seemed mean-spirited. Oh and who pops up next week but Stephen Colletti, Lauren’s Laguna Beach ex! But I’m sure Lauren wouldn’t do anything totally dumb like go to dinner with an ex (especially an ex that played her so badly, dating her and former nemesis Kristin Cavallari at the same time). No, Lauren’s waaaay too smart for that.

Oh and another thing: So Lauren changed jobs just like that? No tearful goodbye with Lisa Love? No montage of best moments from The Closet? It’s not right. I need closure, people.

Deconstructing The Hills: New Yorker Edition

April 18, 2008

In this week’s (well, practically last week’s at this point but bear with me. It’s been a rough one, kids) issue of The New Yorker, critic Nancy Franklin searches for meaning in The Hills. (Above is the New Yorker-fied LC as depicted by illustrator QuickHoney.) Nancy is clearly a Hills newbie—she’s still incredulous that Lauren didn’t go to Paris two seasons ago! Anyway, she makes a few keen observations (“Lauren looks like Marcia Brady, and the three others have dead eyes, although at least Whitney, alone of the girls, appears to understand what having a career means.”) But the piece mostly reads like a summary of the show from the perspective of an…er... older person who is bored/perplexed by it. “I have yet to hear any character on the show say something interesting or funny,” she writes “or see anything that expands my sense of what it’s like to be a young person in Los Angeles.” (The Hills has definitely given me a sense of what it’s like to be young in LA: You have to drive everywhere.) But Nancy does get off one truly great zinger—describing LC’s clothing line as “sub-Old Navy in design.” That’s harsh. True, yet harsh.

Bon Soir Yourself, Pinchy Face Robin!

April 15, 2008

The Bachelor Episode 5 Recap: Thank goodness! Last night we saw the last of Pinchy Face Robin (that is, until she rises a la Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction for “The Ladies Tell All” special in a few weeks). Anyway! In this week’s episode, Matt made some hard calls to get to his Final Four—and I actually like all of the remaining ladies! First, Matt took Chelsea on a sleigh ride, where she confessed that she hates PDAs and won’t hold hands because of a “phobia.” (I have the same problem with being touched on the neck. Never!) Later, responding to Matt’s worries that they’ll end up simply “best mates,” Chelsea said, “If put in a romantic situation, I’ll embrace it.” Um. Sleigh ride. Candlelit dinner. Cute British guy saying he digs you. What more do you need, Chelsea? But in an inspired move, she jumped ahead a few dates and wrote her own “fantasy suite” invite. Smart girl.

During a group date on the ski slopes, Matt and Shayne continued to connect. Sure, right before he went to kiss her, Shayne whipped out some pink lip gloss, but, hey—sometimes a gal needs to reapply! The thing I like about Shayne is that she’s refreshingly blunt about all her high maintenace ways. She almost lost me a few episodes ago when she threw a tantrum in Vegas, but she seems pretty together now. Just look at the way she moved in to break up the most shocking confrontation in Bachelor history! (Was the yelling match between Chelsea and Marshana really that shocking? It seemed fairly tame, though I loved Marshana screaming, “I will not have it! Walk off!” with true Brooklyn attitude.)

At the rose ceremony, I felt like Robin’s evil eyes were boring a hole through me, seriously! (If I were Matt, I’d sleep with one eye open from now on.) I hope she watches herself on TV and realizes that she should smile once in a while. Relax the pinch. (And why did she say “Bon Soir”? That was lame.) As for Marshana, I don’t think she’s too disappointed to be leaving the rugby fields and ski slopes behind and heading home. (I would’ve loved to see Matt in Brooklyn, though.)

There was definitely a more intense vibe this week as we head into the hometown dates. Matt told Chelsea that his parents would love her. Amanda commented that Matt would make a great dad and Matt said Noelle was the kind of girl he could spend the rest of his life with (I agree! She strikes me as very sane and very mature.)

I’m so excited for Matt to meet Shayne’s dad, Lorenzo Lamas. Who do you think will be done-in by the always unpredictable hometown dates?

Relationship Vacation, Meant to be Spent Alone

April 15, 2008

Last night on The Hills, I learned about an exciting new concept: the relationship vacation! I’d heard of “taking a break” or “time apart,” but never of having an actual vacation from your significant other. I have some questions: Is there a limit to how many of these vacations one can take in a calendar year? Where does one go on a relationship vacation? In my imagination, this wondrous event takes place at an all-inclusive resort in the Caribbean, sort of like the anithesis of Sandals, that place that caters to (lame) couples. There are signs posted to remind you that you’re temporarily free of the dreary land of compromise and communication. The signs say, “Take Care of You!” and “No Partnership Allowed!” Attractive men bring you drinks all day. The drinks are laced with a special ingredient that wipes your beloved from your mind. You don’t ever call or send postcards. For fun, you waterski like The Go-Go’s.

It’s good to decide your location beforehand, so you don’t have a situation like Speidi did last night—they both picked the exact same place to get away from each other! (Well, Heidi picked. Spencer stalked.) And that place, naturally, was S Bar. (Everything happens there lately, doesn’t it? It’s the new Les Deux!) Heidi, who had somehow convinced Audrina to join her in a night out, was shocked (shocked!) to see Spencer at the bar with his brutally hot new friend Kevin (Um, Kevin? Call me!) talking to girls. (Apparently, those on relationship vacation are prohibited from interacting with the locals.) A wild-eyed Heidi seemed especially distraught about Spencer taking shots (also apparently prohibited). She screeched, “Someone’s about to go down!” For once, Spencer actually seemed like the rational party, pointing out that the relationship vacation idea was pretty, uh, stupid. “You call it relationship vacation. Anyone else on planet Earth calls that breaking up,” he said wisely.

In other news, Lauren went from “slo-mo to fashion glow” in the eyes of Kelly Cutrone and was offered a job at People’s Revolution. Will she take it? Will Audrina end up homeless when LC and Lo move in together? (Answer, courtesy Us Weekly: No, she’s going to live in their guest house.) Will Heidi take a cue from The Go-Go’s and realize that, though the relationship vacation is all she ever wanted, she was wrong—and she’s not so strong? And that she should’ve known all along that (truth and) time would tell?

Oh and another thing: Next week looks insane! Did I see Lauren actually sitting at the same table as Justin Bobby and Heidi? Whoa.

Note to MTV: You Suck

April 14, 2008

Okay, it’s 11:40 p.m. and I have no idea what happened on The Hills tonight (I also have no idea where my children are, but that’s a different story). MTV.com is experiencing some kind of meltdown. (Yea, I watch the The Hills online.) Never had a major problem before but tonight’s episode refuses to play. And people are freaking out! There’s more than 100 comments ranging from “wtf?” to “this sucks ass” to “OMGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG.” My thoughts exactly.

One clever commentor seemed to have found the cure. She advised people to head to the MTV homepage and click on the Nelly video. And it worked! Nelly somehow magically led to The Hills! I got through the opening scene with Heidi and Audrina, then the theme song, then … darkness descended once again. MTV, you are cruel.

Update 12:20 a.m.: Success! Man, that was brutal. Anyway, recap to follow…