Tag Archives: Television Icons

ONE FINE FAMILY – THE FARM KINGS

Who are the Farm Kings? I bet you’ve heard about the King family via friends or by passing through on a wave of channel surfing. Meet the Kings, a family who runs Freedom Farms and serves “farm to table” food and vegetables providing the Pittsburgh region the freshest produce possible. And besides being the hardest working family this side of the Kardashians (I chuckle at the comparison!) the King brothers, there’s 9 of them, are more stunning the next. If I could also mention that I truly believe that this TV show should be required watching for today’s youth. It shows what hard work is all about, how family bonds can be stronger than anything and where wholesome and true farming takes place. They really have a deep love for one another.

And like their t-shirts testify…  No Farms – No Food!

Underneath Mamma Bear Lisa, there’s older brother Joe, Tim, Pete, Dan (my personal hero!), Luke, Sam, John (gorgeous heartbreaker at 16!), Paul and Ben. “Bitty” is the only female (2nd oldest child) around other than Lisa with the testosterone running rampant across plains and cornfields from the male brood of the King family. And above all else, the King boys worship their Mamma Bear. The family is truly inspiring and we’re so glad we found the show. We really enjoy it! This is reality TV done right.

And did I mention that the boys are gorgeous?! They are often shirtless, sweaty and wrestling one another in the fields. Their teeth are pearly white, skin is tan and clear, and they’re mostly always in good moods considering the amount of time they spend with one another. That is until a drought or hailstorm has created havoc on all of their hard work which is quite heartbreaking. Set your DVR, catch it live or watch it online. You too will fall in love with the King family. Find their WEBSITE for t-shirts, locations and just to say Hello!

Farm Kings can be found on GAC (Great American Country) channel on Thursdays at 9 p.m. I dare you to try and pick your favorite brother. Dare, I say!

John… Again, you’ll be 18 when?!

MEETING BOBBIE EAKES

Over Memorial Day Weekend, I had the honor of meeting the lady Bobbie Eakes in person at Spencer’s Restaurant for Bob Smith’s 50th birthday shindig. Ah, the party was done very well with just the right amount of everything. It was great to be out for the evening considering we had zero plans on doing anything! Since having Bobbie on the blog for the Picture Me Happy event at ACE, I had heard only wonderful things about her from people in the know and fans of her work on television. “She’s iconic,” a friend cooed over the phone. One of the volunteers of the charity event said of Bobbie, “She was a class act the entire time.” I agree! I fell in love with her in person.

Lorrie, one of our spin instructors at World Gym, called me over just as we were arriving to the party at Spencer’s and introduced me her friend Bobbie when I immediately replied, “Eakes?!” Bobbie smiled answering back, “Yes.” I hugged her and introduced myself as the blogger that interviewed her for the Splash into Summer Bash. “I recognize your face now, for sure. I love your blog,” Ms. Eakes flattered back which always wins me over. Compliments are well appreciated especially from such a pretty lady.

We chatted a bit and she told me a few stories of crazy fandom overseas where crowds and paparazzi hounded her and how insane it became. I got a few juicy tales of when she was competing in Miss America and how the experience really opened the door that led to her first television gig. She was so approachable and down to earth. Bobbie stood casually and discussed Europe with Jacques while I mingled the room. Meeting Bobbie Eakes was a true highlight of the night. I’m so glad we went to celebrate with Bob for his milestone birthday and enjoy the evening with good friends.

RUPAUL REWIND IN FAST FORWARD

Last night’s episode of Logo TVs RuPaul’s Drag Race… in a flash. Credits roll. An airbrushed RuPaul sings. Dolls arrive. Jiggly erases Alisa’s outgoing message in lipstick off mirror. She Mail is delivered. For a Mini Challenge, queens must have “back,” made of foam, styrofoam peanuts and stuffing. Bootylicious! Willem, Chad and Phi Phi (I believe) won. Wresting teams are picked by these three as leaders. Latrice Royale is picked first. Madame LaQueer, last. The sexy Rick Fox and John Sailey happily judged the Dolls. Some really acted as silly as the challenge called for. Others tried to be cute, stay pretty and safe. In the end, Chad Michaels and Madame LaQueer are deservedly victorious! Sharon Needles gave me Lana Del Rey. The Princess out lip-sync’s a young Lashauwn for the final spot of the week. The end.

ENGINE’S REV ON RUPAUL’S DRAG RACE 4

Thanks to Logo TV Online, I was able to see an early viewing of the first episode of RuPaul’s Drag Race a.k.a. RDR and this season is starting off with all the ego drama and catfighting one Main Stage can contain. Front runners the petite posing beauty Kenya Michaels and America’s favorite Cher impersonator Chad Michaels seem to be steering the pack of queens towards the title “America’s Next Drag Superstar” and the prize package including fabulous makeup, gay travel and a cash prize of $100K (reported earlier in my blog as being $125K – sorry!)

After the queens arrived one by one, we meet the characters and stories that got them on national television. There’s overly confident borderline obnoxious cocky Willam basically telling the rest to press it back home because she was taking the crown home. Old friend Latrice Royale from Ft. Lauderdale discussing how going to prison changed her life.  Extremists The Princess and Sharon Needles bonding over painting faces while Princess expressed her physical desire for Needles. Well, like a dear sister from Atlanta Amber Richards, may she rest peacefully, once said, “If you can’t F! your sisters who can you F!?” Other stories unfold as does the season.

RuPaul comes out and says Hello! to the Dolls personally as the Pit Crew from previous seasons bring out a wooden box on wheels. Camera pans to the girls and some are quite nervous. And surprise! Out pops Shangela for another try at the crown! Well, not exactly. After some quick witted dialogue about this being a new year and the possible apocalypse, Ru shoves LaQuifa’s head back in and off she goes into her budding career. Halleloo! The sweat beads stop their fall down contestants faces and the Dolls prepare for their first lap around the racetrack.

Latina mamma Jiggly Caliente won the Mini Challenge consisting of the Dolls maintaining their modelesque composure on a rotating platform while the sexy Pit Crew spray them down with fluorescent paints. Yes, apocalypse. Or, “RuPocalypse” as it was called. Reality show staple Mike Ruiz snapped his camera lens and photos we made, even ones of the girls who nailed the ground from their imbalance. It was Drag Queen roadkill off to the sides of rubble and dismay.

The Main Stage Challenge led the divas into a deserted location filled with zombie drag queens including former All-Stars Raven, Pandora Boxx, Shannel and Ongina holding fabrics and supplies for the perfect apocalyptic haute couture. Cue eerie music and fog. Back in the workroom sewing began and creations flowed. The Mistress of the Dark Elvira found her perfect place on the judge’s table besides mainstays Seduction lead Michelle Visage and the sassy but fashionable Santino Rice back for another season of judging. RuPaul strutted down the Main Stage runway and CUT!

Thanks Logo TV for pulling the plug just at the climax! UGH. I’ll be watching it for reals tomorrow (Monday) night but it sure was good getting a sneak peek. They weren’t going to give it all away… I’m dying to see who will “Lip-sync for their life!”

…flash forward to the premiere…

Watching it live on television gave it more layers we couldn’t catch watching it online. On the Main Stage runway, some girls simply got by while others soared. As I predicted, Sharon Needles won the challenge while Florida based Alisa Summers and New York’s plus-size Barbie doll Jiggly Caliente found themselves in the bottom two lip-syncing to Britney Spears’ infectious Toxic. In the end, Jiggly was clearly the winner as she nailed her words standing directly singing to the judges. Alisa took the more casual approach to a bored strut around the runway while insecurely glancing over at Caliente who was turning it out. Way to go, girls! We’re off to a fabulous season!

Until next week… We have Untucked!

TELEVISION TREASURES

Was watching Modern Family last evening and had to rewind when I heard Ed O’Neil’s characters say (and I quote) “Sometimes on the race to the Top you have to grease the pole behind you.” Gay men HAVE to be writing this stuff! The dialogue is too damn priceless. We got a great guffaw and kept watching the smart show. There’s a few sitcoms that catch our attention for repeated viewing like Tina Fey’s brilliant 30 Rock and Courteney Cox’s missing-from-the-lineup-for-too-long Cougar Town. Other than that, not many. 2 Broke Girls with Kat Dennings is really quick witted and I’ve loved her ever since she was the 13-year-old “bat mitzvah beast” going on thirty in the fabulous episode called Hot Child in the City. Great show. It’s one of those I keep on my iPhone so when I travel I can pull it up because Kat’s performance is sick. Loves it…

Then on Lifetime’s smash hit Dance Moms the evening prior I squealed when dance-inatrix (would that be dance teacher + dominatrix?! you get my point)  Miss Abby Lee Miller told her new 10-year-innocent protégé to “Save the tears for your pillow in your room, alone” after she came off stage from her solo that didn’t go as well as expected. Priceless. Oh, the joys of delicious writing. What?! Reality TV  isn’t scripted? Think again, friend. Yes, Abby is extreme but she produces stars and talent like few do so if the mothers allow the training and the kids don’t go running, applause applause, I say. It just started it’s second season of snapping, sassing and we watch intently.

Heading into to work now so I’m instructing you to set your DVR to record some smart and funny writing delivered by the characters that make them famous. And you can quote me on that! Happy Weekend. xoSM

OUR GAY CULTURE

STEVEN SPILLS © 108

JUST IN JANUARY

How are those resolutions going?! You know that if you’re going to change something you should just start now not later. When you are serious about the switch from what’s-happening-wrong to make-it-better-you then you’re not going to wait. Just do it! (As the Nike campaign instructs.) If slowing down and taking that needed breath is what’s on order, take that few seconds to hit the breaks on the chaos of life. When a fire could perk up your work speed or dream chasing, imagine walking on hot coals barefooted and get moving.

January brings in tons of popular culture collectables including devastating drag queens, salacious British extremists and red carpet gowns on award-winning actresses. Where do we begin? There’s so much going on that calendars are full and people busy. What more can we ask for? And as Joan Crawford, err, Faye Dunaway commanded in Mommie Dearest, “Now, let’s get to work.”

Well, Sweetie Darling. You do know that brand new episodes of that 90s smash cult hit Absolutely Fabulous are hitting Logo TV, in association with BBC America, throughout January. Everyone’s favorite duo is back! Edina and Patsy bring that absolute fabulousity that we’ve come to expect from them. In conjunction with the 20th Anniversary of their original production, three new episodes bring our party mavericks into an era of Kardashians and having to realize results of past indiscretions.

Watching our women portray these iconic tawdry extremists so deliciously brings back brilliant memories of my life in Atlanta. I would sit around with my group of best confidants watching the series, circa mid-90s, recovering from a long weekend of excessive hardcore celebrating like our Madame Monsoon and Diva Stone would pull off in a night. I’ve seen one of the newest episodes at press time and find their delivery as impeccable as ever and already yearn for more! Set the DVR, Sweetie! Alright?!

Joyful Noise starring two of our favorite ladies of stage and screen, Dolly Parton and Queen Latifah, hits theaters on January 13. “It’s ladies night. Oh, what a night. What a night.” Just saying this is a lesbian’s wet dream come true. Parton’s pretty and curvaceous style and Latifah’s undeniable sass and witty grit come together on film to try and save a struggling gospel choir win a national competition. Both artists have talented voices so I would bet the soundtrack will be a must-hear! Maybe we’ll even see our ladies on the red carpet during our upcoming award show season turning heads with other stunners dressed in the likes of Tom Ford, McQueen and Versace.

On January 24, speaking of struggling choirs, our hardworking cast of Glee will be delivering an entire episode of Michael Jackson smashers dedicated to the late King of Pop including Brittany and Santana singing “In the Closet” and Darren Criss’ character Blaine crooning “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’.” With the series having both its high notes and low registers this season, I’m looking forward to seeing what they produce with this episode. Guaranteed, the results will be detailed and dissected by critics and fans alike. Us included!

Do you consider yourself a Heather or a Booger?! Watch the new season of RuPaul’s Drag Race and figure it out. Now I love a good drag pageant and by the looks of the previews running on Logo TV, the new season of RDR is going to be bigger and better than ever before. The prize money for top spot as America’s Next Drag Superstar has been yanked to $125K so these other reality programs need to step up their games. It has even made me contemplate shaving my chest, taping ‘em up, tucking it back, painting my canvas and competing for the crown. Would that be so bad?!

This season’s premiere is January 30 and brings the likes of edgy competitors Sharon Needles (love that name!) and bald but beautiful The Princess; fierce mammas of size South Beach’s Latrice Royale and the self-proclaimed “Asian plus-sized Barbie” Jiggy Caliente from Queens, NY; and legendary Cher impersonator Chad Michaels from San Diego, to name just a few. There’s thirteen divas vying for the title this round and my score card is anxious for some at-home judging. Join me, please!

Toss in a few moments on the calendar for the “weird but wonderful” happening in January and we have our month: Milk Day (01/11), the Frisbee’s birthday (01/13), National Dress Up Your Pet Day (01/14), National Popcorn Day (01/19), and (my favorite) Hugging Day (01/21).

2012 © PULP

BRAND NEW “ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS”

OMG! We’ve been watching older episodes of “Ab Fab” on Logo TV and Absolutely Fabulous: Absolutely Everything recently, especially through the holidays when there’s absolutely nothing fabulous to see. Voila! The Videodrome Discothèque Vault Presents: The New Absolutely Fabulous Episode!!! from Videodrome Discothèque on Vimeo. Sit down, Sweetie Darling. Grab some Stoli or champagne and enjoy this hilarity. They still have it! Patsy and Edina are back! I’ve watched it twice and it’s a scream, pure and simple.

Kick back and laugh your knickers off, alright?! Brilliant!

MTV VMA RECAP

The VMAs were last night and for those outside the know, MTV holds the annual Video Music Awards for the BEST (in their opinion) in music videos for the year. For a channel that really doesn’t play music videos anymore and delivered such a show from Yawnsville last evening should maybe refocus, reformat and retool the once popular event. The evening’s highlights included a sly announcement of pregnancy from a smiling Beyonce at the end of her performance by a rubbing of her belly and baby-bump, and a Drag King performance (creating buzz that she ripped off Annie Lenox) of alter-ego “Jo Calderone” from Lady Gaga destined to top her meat dress from last year. I would love to say Britney Spears accepting her Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award was a monumental moment but with Gaga’s over-the-top in-Britney’s-face introduction Spears’ “thank-you” got lost in the shuffle of announcing Beyonce. Seemed like a half-assed moment and very disappointing. Even the Britney-inspired production was lackluster.

Low-points included the Jersey Shore Guidettes dressed in too-short mini-dresses and a loony-toon Cloris Leachman who wishes people would “confuse her with Betty White.” Hardly. Newlywed Kim Kardashian could hardly walk in her silver gown and artist-of-the-moment Jessie J must have injured her leg and performed in a chair. Very odd. Justin Beiber needs to check her ego and deciding not to really respond to the artists on stage by not clapping or thanking God and Jesus for the award she won was a bit much. I really don’t remember Justin Timberlake being so narcissistic when he was busting through with fame. Beiber is too damn full of himself and needs to be brought down a notch or two. Hope he has talked to N.K.O.T.B.S.B. about the future and what it will inevitably hold for The Beibs.

Awards were handed out, Katy Perry and Nicki Minaj both played dress-up while Chris Brown on cables flying above the crowds actually turned the stage out, as did Adele! (But not on cables.) The jokes and commentary that the stars were forced to read were lame, a train wreck and painful as was most of the show. Lots of bleeping the bad words, cocktail waiters hitting the floors for fill-ups and a good time seems to be had by all… except the viewing audience at home. Not that they’ve asked me but I’d love to give my thoughts. Yes, more than I’ve shared here. First of all… Ooops! That’s it for now! Good Evening. :)

OPRAH OWNS IT

STEVEN SPILLS © 99 

OPRAH OWNS IT 

If I had to name the one woman that has inspired me in the most significant ways other than my mother, my answer would be Oprah Winfrey. She has unique magic surrounding her that beckons people to listen, and we do, intently with a thirst of wanting more. Her giving nature goes beyond what has been witnessed on television and in the media. While affording others luxuries that they may not have had without her in their lives to whatever degree that is, Oprah gets back just as much as she gives out. Doubtfully materialistic as witnessed on her generous “My Favorite Things” specials but I feel her payback from us is our undying gratitude for what she has done for us personally and countless others she’ll never know.

I could tell how we have the same ties of southern roots and how Oprah was voted Most Popular Girl in school. Or we could discuss how she won the Miss Black Tennessee beauty pageant at seventeen-years-young and has displayed more honesty about mistakes she’s made and lessons learned than anyone else I could name in the public eye today. With the end of her talk show after twenty-five glorious years on the air, legions of her following are waiting and wanting her to come back soon. She needs a break, we know that. I mean, wouldn’t you?!

Watching Season 25: Oprah Behind the Scenes has been a true treat for anyone wanting a brief glimpse of what she is all about and what it takes to be her. Naturally, Oprah takes herself very seriously as a smart businesswoman. But in flashes you see that her hair does come down and she laughs at some of it, too. Of course, she’s in control 99% of the time and what we see is what she allows. Again, we’ve watched with eyes glued on this iconic presence that encourages and inspires others to being accountable for themselves. I trust her and anyone that is still reading this must also, I assume. Why wouldn’t we?!

Living present in the now is what I take from knowing of her and I try to commit to every moment that I am in. I, too, have done the “ugly cry” and sometimes it’s been along with her. The “a-ha” moments that she talks about usually come for me when I’m wondering if my words are reaching anyone and someone will inadvertently come to me complimenting something I wrote that touched or affected them in some way. I then am reminded again that these stories are reaching those wanting them. A reader almost made me boo-hoo-the-hoo after what they said to me recently. I was greatly humbled by his appreciation.

I had watched The Oprah Winfrey Show over the years but it wasn’t until September 1998 that I really felt the impact she had on me as a viewer. A very dark and lonely black cloud had found me without much break in sight and I was very sad with myself. I was trying to make some things happen for me unknowingly that at the time it wasn’t meant to be. While forces of nature stopped me and turned me around to start over, I looked for guidance anywhere I could get it.

Getting to the point, I was in Manhattan staying at the YMCA on W23rd for about a month. While every plan and scheme I had to be in New York slowly crumbled around me I sat and watched Oprah’s show every day I could catch it and cried my eyes out alone. Every time I would watch the show it was if she was talking to me about things I needed to hear or sort through. It was crazy ridiculous good but eye-opening and face-slapping realistic, too. One day she encouraged viewers to forgive those in their lives in need of forgiving. When I returned to Ft. Lauderdale with defeat on my chest from Manhattan, I did just that.

I made a videotape for my father of me forgiving him and telling him that I knew he loved me the only way he was capable of loving. That I understood that it wasn’t me, it was him and still do believe that. It felt really good doing it and getting it off my chest but it wasn’t good hearing him call telling me that it made him cry sadly. When I was in Nashville recently burying him and going through his things the video was the first thing I came across. I placed it a separate bag and disposed of it still knowing exactly what I had said and how I felt. That hadn’t changed. I moved on thanks to Oprah and continue to move easier through life because of her indescribable ways.

2011 © PULP