Queer as Folk U.S.
Smells Like Codependence

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Camper: B- | Grade It Now!
Brian, Brian, Brian, Oy, Oy, Oy

At last! Queer as Folk as it's meant to be co-hosted: Ladies and Gentlemen, Harvey Fierstein...IS IN THE HOUSE. WOOHOO! Our prayers have been answered. But I can't help thinking they finally went with a co-host that made sense because they knew Brian Kinney was going to work my last damn nerve. Unfortunately, I am not easily lulled into a sense of complacency. Nice try, though. I love me some Harvey. "Got some popcorn?" He asks at the end, with a knowing nod. "Sit back." Nope, but I just picked up some Red Vines at Target, and that's good enough. I guess since Harvey's on tonight, giving the show actual gay creds, they've decided to move the disclaimer back to the beginning of the episode. This isn't meant to reflect the lives of all gay people -- just the sexy ones. Got it.

Daphne and Justin enter a tattoo parlor. The Original Tattooed Man walks out as the two teenagers walk in; as usual, Daphne gawks, and Justin acts blasé. Daphne tells Justin that he doesn't have to go through this for Brian, "just because he's [Justin's] boyfriend." Justin replies that Brian's not his boyfriend: "I don't do boyfriends." I wonder where he got that line from? Justin points out that lots of kids at school have them; a girl named Erika Jacobsen, for instance, has her belly button pierced. Predictably, Daphy replies, "Yeah, but Erika Jacobsen is a whore." How many of you out there called that? Justin wisely leaves the potential analogy alone. Daphne then recites a range of horror stories including couples getting their piercings entangled, and people getting gangrene and having to have their nose amputated. Justin ignores her. Doesn't she know she's just there to make him feel just that much more the cool rebel? Duh. Anyway, turns out that Justin's come to get his nipple pierced, and he's helped by a very nice, blonde Grrl who looks like she just stepped out of a scene from The Crow. Daphne cringes away from the needle, asking, "Is it going to hurt?" The Grrl giggles and cheerfully replies, "Well, sure!" And sure enough, Justin yelps all over the place. He got his right nipple pierced. I'm told that may or may not mean anything. It would have if it was his ear five years ago, apparently. I breathlessly await further discussion on the boards. But if Justin were really hard-core, he'd get them both pierced. Wimp.

Liberty Diner. Mike and Dave Do Dinner. Dave actually complains because other guys in the restaurant are checking them out. Then Mike voice-overs: "Everyone's always wishing that they had a boyfriend. How he'd look, how he'd sound, how nice it would be to have someone to share you life, your dreams, your dental floss --" Not the same strand though; that's gross. Mike continues, "So, how come none of us has one? That's because we're lying. None of us could commit to a houseplant. How could we commit to a boyfriend?" Oooh, that one hit a little too close to home. A home empty of pets, food with an expiration date, and, yes, houseplants. But I could take care of a boyfriend. By "take care of," I mean, you know, see occasionally, on a semi-regular basis. Cough. Um. You know, just as long as he didn't touch my stuff. Anyway, Mike tells Dave that if he thinks the attention's bad now, he should see it when Brian's there. Dave gives him the stink-eye. Mike apologizes, because he promised that he wouldn't mention Brian for at least ten minutes. Dave sighs, "I'd settle for five." Mike grins adorably. Dr. Dave sighs again and says, "And you've got to stop smiling like that. It makes me want to climb across the table and eat...you...for...dessert." Eww. You're not gay. Stop creeping me out. Mike makes a joke about Dave's wanting whipped cream with that. Ew. You're not gay, either. Dave leans across the table to kiss him (it's just not right, people), and is thankfully interrupted by Debbie, who booms, "You better stay away from the onions, honey, if you two are going to be going at it all night." Knock it off -- I'm trying to keep my dinner down! Debbie's leaning against the booth back, in all her bright and shiny P-Flag glory. Mike winces; he thought she wasn't working that evening. Dave's like, hold on, this is your mother? Mike smiles and kisses her on the cheek. Debbie tells Dave that he's "goddamn gorgeous!" which he is, but he's not gay. She subbed for someone who got sick from eating the kabobs. Dave's eating the kabobs right now, and almost chokes. Debbie cackles. Just kidding. Mike gives her the "cut it out" sign across his throat. Debbie does. She clears their table onto a big round tray, groaning as she lifts it up to her shoulder. Dr. Dave tells her to lift from her knees, instead, and shows her how. She thanks him and tells him, "You're an angel." Dave chuckles, "No, I'm a chiropractor." Every mother's dream! For their straight daughters, that is, because He's SONOTGAY! Debbie's enraptured: "You didn't tell me you were dating a doctor! How long were you planning on keeping this from me?" Mike replies, "As long as I could." Debbie invites David over for dinner. Mike tries to get out of it, but Dave agrees. Delightfully, even.

The Taylors' Suburban Manse. Mr. Craig Taylor has his back to the camera, as Jennifer tries to get his attention off-screen. ["The father's name is Craig?! A dear friend of mine from my last day job was named Craig Taylor, and though he is younger than I am, I'm sure he would have no problem at all accepting a gay son, if he had one." -- Wing Chun] When Craig turns around, he looks disturbingly like Sting. I like Sting. I don't think I'm going to like Craig Taylor. Oh, boy, more cognitive dissonance. Yay. Craig says that Justin's not gay. Those nude drawings were for art class. And the underwear, he just bought for himself. Jennifer points out the underwear is not Justin's size. THAT DOESN'T MEAN HE'S GAY! Jennifer points out that Justin told her he was gay. Well, what the hell does Justin know? He's just confused. Unsure. Yeah! Jennifer sighs. NO. Justin's gay. Just like they've always suspected. Well, Mr. Taylor didn't suspect it, uh, uh, no sir. Wow, get this guy a bottle of scotch and a teddy bear. And anyway, didn't she promise Justin she wouldn't tell his dad? You can't just go and out people without letting them know first. That betrayal of trust ought to keep his butt at home. Craig continues to fight gravity: Justin's just sensitive! Artistic! "Justin's his own person. Not every kid can be the quarterback on the football team." Dude, Justin's HAD the quarterback on the football team. Give it up. Turn it loose. He's gay. Finally, Craig blames Jenny for not telling him: "Don't I have a right to know what's going on around here?" Uh, helps if you ask, Pops, or look up from the evening news once in a while. Jennifer says that she promised she wouldn't, but she's afraid of what Justin might be getting into -- or, rather, what might be getting into him. Mr. Taylor leaps up from his chair, and screams upstairs for his son. Jennifer tells him that Justin's not at home. Christ, would the man even recognize Justin if he saw him? Jenny says that Justin told her that he was going to Daphne's: "But I know he isn't." So, we're still perpetuating that little lie, are we? Which means that Daphne's still agreeing to stay at home in order to cover Justin's ass. Aw, man, HOLD ME BACK. Jennifer tells Craig that she found him in a gay bar once. Craig rages that he's going to put a stop to this gay nonsense once and for all! Jenny's pretty quiet, but also sort of smug, kind of like, "Neener, neener, neener, neener, I know Justin's gay and you did-dint. Pbbt!" As the final coup de grâce, she says that there's more: Justin's seeing someone. Craig's all about calling the parents of whoever the kid is. Not a kid, Jenny says: "He's a man. His name is Brian Kinney."

The man in question is playing pool with Mike down at Woody's, while Ted and Emmett mercilessly tease Mike about Dr. Dave. Mike protests that David isn't his boyfriend; they've only gone out a couple of times. Emmett says that there are three ways to tell: one, if Dave brings Mike flowers; two, if he invites Mike to go away for a weekend in the country, and three, if Dave meets Mike's mom and she invites him over for dinner. Clumsy foreshadowing. Nothing new. Moving on. At that last bit, Mike nearly puts the cue through the pool table, bouncing the ball onto the floor. That was a total rip-off of that scene from The American President, when Michael Douglas and Martin Sheen are playing pool, and Martin Sheen tells Michael Douglas that Annette Bening called. I guess if you're going to rip off something, you might as well rip it off from something good. So, the ball bounces off the table, and Justin, walking in, catches it. Mike gives him a sour look. Justin ignores everyone else and saunters about three inches away from Brian's face. Brian makes his usual lame "Justin is young" joke. Justin proclaims that he just got a nipple ring, and Brian sneers, "Any piece of trash has got something stuck through their ear or their nose, or their cock. What makes you think that I'm even remotely interested that you've got a ring stuck through your tit?" Justin's elation falters some. Mike, grumpy, gets his coat to leave. Brian tells Mike not to forget about this upcoming Friday. Justin eagerly asks what Friday is. Ted and Emmett happily chorus, "Studs and Suds." Studs and Suds is a Babylon ritual, wherein they flood the floor with suds, and everyone dances around in their underwear -- or less, Emmett adds. "It's disgusting," Ted grimaces. "See you there?" Emmett asks him. "Can't wait," Ted replies. Me, neither, man. Studs and Suds: Where Dirty HDGBs go to get clean. Sign me up, baby! Brian snaps that Michael had better be there; Mike tells him he will be. "Guess who's head over heels?" Emmett snickers. "Or heels over head," Ted snorts. They giggle all the way out of the bar. Justin, surprised, asks Brian whether Michael has a boyfriend. Brian snaps that it's none of his business, and then, tweaking his still-sore nipple rings, adds, "Don't stick your tit in where it doesn't belong."

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Queer as Folk U.S.




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