A-List: New York Recap: The Right to Bear Armpits
God, this show. Say what you will about The A-List: New York's cast of petty prima donnas, but they've sort of nailed that Real Housewives formula: haughty blandness for the first 45 minutes and some semblance of confrontation in the final act. It's a winner every time. Last night we watched as Austin pined for Reichen, Derek hated everything about everyone, and Rodiney invented new verb tenses almost every second. Let's review.
Of all the gays on A-List, Ryan's the one who's really peddling the super-superficial lifestyle to us. He likes Botox and sugar daddies and being under 30, gurl. He also likes resembling Suede from season five of Project Runway, and that's the most un-fabulous idea of the decade. Ryan begins the episode by making straight models remove their shirts and vie for employment with the prestigious fashion company ModelBartenders.com. I hear there entrance exam is killer.
Elsewhere, Austin admits that when he saw Reichen perform in My Big Gay Italian Wedding, he felt an intimate connection with him. That's remarkable, because Reichen can't act, sing, beatbox, clap, or fall down with so much as an iota of talent. "Intimate connection" might be code for "painful pity."
Because nothing on this show is staged in the least, Austin decides to set up a dinner with Reichen in a private, flatteringly lit backroom. (Nice aubergine walls, Director of Photography.) Austin and Reichen are going to talk about important topics like:
1.) Not getting to catch up after Reichen's show.
2.) Austin's loneliness.
3.) Reichen's stupid new hot boyfriend with his horrible un-Austin-like qualities.
Ahem. For no reason, Reichen explains that he once went to a party where he took two herbal supplements that gave him an erection for six hours. Austin laughs with him and somehow stops himself from jumping under the table and begging for proof. Just before they head their separate ways, Austin suggests that Reichen likes stupid hot Rodiney for stupid hot reasons, and that astounds Reichen. Reichen's deep, duh. He treats us to a monologue about how Rodiney put Reichen's pieces back together after Lance Bass destroyed them with his radio-friendly harmonies, toxic blond tips, and nerve. It all makes sense now.
The next day, Reichen and Rodiney enjoy a boot camp aerobics seminar. "Rodiney, do you speak English?" an intimidating man in a camouflage wife-beater asks in the middle of a push-up routine. Apparently he didn't catch Rodiney's unmissable accent. After the exercise, Reichen starts smelling Rodiney's armpits because, "They smell perfect." Let the Reichen elaborate for you: "Rodiney's armpits smell like a lily field in Maine. With a little bit of stank. And I love it." Only A-Listers understand Maine lily fields and armpit glamor. Don't even try if you're not one of these top-of-the-line celebrities.
Back to Ryan: He's getting Botox from a man named Juan, who he keeps calling his "dentist" because it's the oldest (and best?) joke about plastic surgeons ever. Apparently Ryan's husband Desmond sincerely believes Ryan's getting his teeth cleaned. If only Desmond ever touched Ryan's face, he'd realize he's basically a smiley face inflated with plasmic botulism.
After watching a lame-ass photo shoot with Mike and Rodiney, Derek decides to dine with Austin and take a speakerphone call in the middle of the meal. Now, that's rude, but Derek would like you to know it was even ruder for Austin to try and interrupt his call with his words. I know what you're thinking: Derek and Austin better go "hot-tubbing" later and talk about this stupid incident. Well, by God, that happens too -- in the Hamptons.
"If you're on the A-List, it's the place to be seen," says Derek, whose face is real pointy today. "I go there every weekend." Derek keeps claiming to be the most informed cast member, but if he were so damn smart, he wouldn't bring up the term "A-List" 25 times an hour. How on Earth can you call yourself A-List when there's very little -- nay, almost zero chance the home audience has heard of you? Right, you better just not bring it up. At any rate, Derek sits in the hot tub and tells Austin he was wrong to interrupt his call during that meal Derek interrupted with his call. "That's strike one," Derek says. Presumably at strike three, Derek will either murder him or call him "B-List." As if they're not synonyms, am I right?!
This show loses steam whenever it focuses on Reichen, but that didn't stop it from giving us four full minutes of the guy blubbering with his mother in his new apartment. Whaa? It's because he's so stressed, see. We're supposed to believe that. I pretty much applauded when the action turned back to Derek, who dined with Rodiney and mocked his "broken English." That was a thrill.
Finally, we enter the episode's climactic party which, lucky us, invites all of the show's gays. It'd be a mostly pleasant venture except that Derek has gotten it into Reichen's head that Austin is running about town telling stories about his genitals. Yes. Even we know that's not really true. Sure, Austin ain't the brightest reality star, and he did make an "off-the-cusp" (his words, not mine) remark once about Reichen's thang, but he's not making up elaborate tales about it.
So: Reichen confronts Austin on the porch, AND! Nothing happens. But then Derek comes to confront Austin for kinda no reason, AND! Derek clamors enough that it seems like he and Austin won't ever speak again. AGAIN. FOREVER. Until next week. Until the camera gets that angry shot of the two of them. AND! Scene.