“When one pair of legs closes, another one opens.”
Or at least that’s what Polish Oprah says. I’d be careful about disagreeing with her, since critics are hanged by the neck until dead. It’s also the tactic that 2 Broke Girls appears to be taking, since I can’t remember a point when both Max and Caroline were in serious romantic relationships at the same time. One may have a brief fling while the other is dating, but that’s about the extent of it.
Larger ensemble comedies have likewise chosen to give select characters the spotlight re: significant others, but in this case the rest of the cast plays second fiddle to the duo at its core. The inability, or unwillingness, of the show’s writers’ room to allow both Max and Caroline date concurrently speaks to their narrow focus. One at a time; wait your turn, please.
To be fair this episode actually closes on the idea that they might be trying to make a change moving forward, so we should probably get to what actually happens-
Posted in Comedy, relationships, review, sex, television
Tagged 2 Broke Girls, 3rd date, And the Tease Time, Beth Behrs, Bobby, burlesque, Caroline, CBS, Christopher Gorham, dancing, Han, Jonathan Kite, Kat Dennings, Katie Wee, lingerie, Matthew Moy, Max, Oleg, relationship, review, Rita, S6E16, sex, Sophie, third date, underwear
So I’ll be honest, I’m actually frightened that three years later we’re seeing a retread of “And the Not Broke Parents”. That episode marked the last we saw of Deke, Max’s then-boyfriend, and he left with so little fanfare that for months after the fact people came across these reviews by Googling “when did max and deke break up”. Essentially what I’m saying is that I think this might be the end of Rax.
“And the Stalking Dead” is Ed Quinn’s 17th episode playing the incredibly fit Hollywood lawyer, and it’s much to his credit that their on-again, off-again relationship has proven so compelling; his dynamic with Kat Dennings works, even when he’s a face on a phone or tablet. Adding to that is the show’s tendency to push Max after him, her increased vulnerability showcasing a side of her we rarely get to see. If there’s any hope that he’ll be returning it’s that last point, as the 2 Broke Girls writers’ room appears to be really into exploring that facet of her character. Continue reading
Posted in Comedy, relationships, sex, writing
Tagged 2 Broke Girls, And the Stalking Dead, audition, Beth Behrs, breakup, Caroline, casting director, CBS, Ed Quinn, Han, Jonathan Kite, Kat Dennings, masculinity, Matthew Moy, Max, Oleg, Randy, review, S6E13, Sophie
As I say at the beginning of every year, you can look back at the first-ever Evan Yeong Literary Awards in 2014 for a fuller description of my relationship with reading, which in turn led to their inception.
While eventually I’ll run out of ways to write this, the purpose of the third installment of the Evan Yeong Literary Awards is to shine a spotlight on an artistic medium that has taken a bit of a back seat as screen media becomes increasingly more prevalent, calling attention to a select handful of books I read these past 12 months. In 2015 every pick was objectively a winner, but given the rocky year following it’s no surprise that these awards have their ups and downs.
In 2016 my resolution was, just as it will likely be every year moving forward until it becomes unfeasible, to read more than the year before. That said I was devastated to do the final count to see that I read exactly the same number as I did in 2015. You can check out a full list [with the exact dates of when I read each one] at this link.
wokest novel, PRE-2000’s
The Wayward Bus by John Steinbeck
Although it’s fallen out of fashion since the time of its coinage in 2015, “woke” is still the most concise way to say “aware of racism and social in justice”. Throughout a novel that could serve merely as a cautionary tale of public transportation Steinbeck communicates time and time again that even though he lived as a person of great privilege, during an era where those privileges were even greater than they are now, he wasn’t afraid to pen several scathing indictments against the very class he was a part of.
most disappointing, though by no means awful
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
The fault with this YA novel can be laid at the feet of those who framed it as a solid example of an interracial relationship in the genre. Although the titular Park is half-Korean the fact is that this is not something he personally relates to as a character, and certainly isn’t a factor that others take into consideration when viewing him [save for Eleanor, who gushes over his features in a way that borders on the fetishistic]. Apart from that this book very competently portrays the familial issues that can plague teenagers, as well as the most authentic depiction of how intense young love can be that I’ve ever read. Continue reading
Posted in America, art, history, race, relationships, review, sex, writing
Tagged Celeste Ng, Eleanor & Park, Ellen Ladowsky, Evan Yeong Literary Awards, Everything I Never Told You, history, How to Dump a Guy: A Coward's Manual, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Jill Lepore, john steinbeck, Judy Pasternak, Juneteenth, Kate Fillion, Kody Keplinger, Let It Be Morning, literature, novel, race, Rainbow Rowell, Ralph Ellison, relevant, romance, Sayed Kashua, Sunjeev Sahota, The Day I Shot Cupid: Hello My Name is Jennifer Love Hewitt and I'm a Love-aholic, The Duff, The Name of War: King Philip's War and The Origins of American Identity, The Wayward Bus, The Year of the Runaways, wokest, YA, Yellow Dirt: An American Story of a Poisoned Land and a People Betrayed
By now you’ve probably heard that Stanford student Brock Allen Turner was sentenced to only 6 months in prison for raping an unconscious woman at a party. You’ve probably also heard his father shamelessly attempt to downplay Turner’s actions as “20 minutes of action”.
Hopefully, you’ve also read the letter written by the rape survivor. In it, she breaks down many of the myths around rape, myths Turner’s defence used to attack her testimony and represent Turner as some kind of victim instead. Her heartbreaking personal account has broken down the defences of almost everyone who has read it (except Turner and his father, it would seem). According to Buzzfeed, one of the main sites to release her letter, her words have “gone viral” in a way few conversations about sexual assault ever do.
And as the word has spread, almost everyone has gotten behind this brave woman. Her story has brought light to the problem of systemic injustices, like light penalties for many cases of sexual assault and disproportionate penalties based on racial or economic background.
More than anything her story has prompted a united public outrage. Every comment I have read expresses distain and anger towards Turner and sympathy for his victim. Even internet trolls who would normally find a reason to challenge the victim’s story (i.e. some members of the Men’s Rights Reddit page) admit that “outrage over this issue is legitimate” (although their comments inevitably lead back to criticizing feminism).
In some ways it’s encouraging to witness the attack on Brock Turner. It seems like we’re experiencing a massive shift in the way we talk about rape and sexual violence. As this story has unfolded we’ve seen few if any attempts to slut shame or victim blame in the media or public conversation.
As glad as I am that this conversation has come out in favour of the victim, I can’t help but wonder if the public condemnation of Turner actually signals for a yearning for justice, or if perhaps other factors are at play. I’ve been struggling with two questions in particular. Continue reading
Posted in crime, media, morality, news, politics, race, sex
Tagged 20 minutes of action, abusive, Anonymous, athlete, attitude, backlash, blood, Brave, Brock Turner, conversation shift, crowd, cultural shift, economic, father, hospital, hypocrisy, inequality, Judge Persky, justice, letter, media, Men, men's rights, mob, penalties, physical assault, prison, questions, racial, rape, representation, revenge, Sexual Assault, slut shame, stanford, Stanford rape, stanford rapist, survivor, systemic injustice, testimony, trauma, victim, victim blame, witnesses, woman, women
The sexual assault of a child is the most abhorrent crime in the world. As a society we curse those who commit such crimes and refuse to recognize them as anything but outsiders and deviants. Unfortunately, pedophilia is far more common than we care to admit.
Former child actors Elijah Wood and Corey Feldman recently drew attention to the problem of pedophilia in Hollywood. While Wood only pointed to events he had heard about (and last year’s documentary film, An Open Secret), Feldman referred to his own experience with abuse
Unfortunately for Feldman, even if he would like to call out the men who abused him as a child he is unable to do so for legal reasons:
I would love to name names. I’d love to be the first to do it. But unfortunately California conveniently enough has a statute of limitations that prevents that from happening. Because if I were to go and mention anybody’s name I would be the one that would be in legal problems and I’m the one that would be sued.
In a stark juxtaposition to Hollywood, Indonesia is also in the news for their dealings with pedophiles. After a 14-year-old girl was brutally gang raped and then murdered, President Joko Widodo introduced a new law that would mean the death penalty or chemical castration for the sexual assault of a minor.
After reading about the injustice of Hollywood, where survivors are unable to prosecute the predators who took advantage of them, reading about Indonesia can feel like a breath of fresh air. However, it’s worth looking beyond our gut reaction to ask if forced chemical castration, and the possibility of the death penalty, will actually work as a deterrent against the sexual assault of a minor. Continue reading
Posted in crime, news, politics, sex
Tagged abuse, An Open Secret, assault, believe survivors, chemical castration, chemical therapy, children, Corey Feldman, death penalty, defamation, disease, disgust, domination, Elijah Wood, evil, germany, hide, Hollywood, Hurt, Indonesia, innocent, legal, meme, Mental illness, myth, normal, one-dimensional, pedophile, pedophilia, Penal Reform, power, predator, prevent, prevention, problem, protection, punish, punishment, recidivism, Sexual Assault, sick, society, sued, support group, survivors, victims, Violence, virtuous pedophiles
So apart from Max heckling customers, which the show hasn’t used to grace a cold open in quite some time, and every character besides Han poking fun at the diner’s general hygiene, the typical setting of 2 Broke Girls has rarely been a source of specific humour in the way, say, Sacred Heart hospital was on Scrubs, et cetera. We generally know it’s a dump, but the joke doesn’t extend far beyond that.
Honestly, I didn’t even know what I was missing until I got a taste of it [pun only somewhat intended].
It all begins with Oleg calling out that a “tuna malt” is ready to be served, which is honestly such a ludicrous miscommunication that I couldn’t help but smile.
In addition to that there’s the blackboard of specials, which Max’s atrocious handwriting has turned into a list of food that is . . . well, not as special as Han would probably like. They feature such dishes as “Sloppy Jobs”-
-and “Pork Chips”-
-and while the characters kind of run them into the ground a little, they’re all pretty entertaining. Just having it say “desert” instead of “dessert” is funny, especially given that no one makes note of it. The Williamsburg Diner may be a disgusting establishment, but it’s nice to see that it can also be a place where incompetence is present in the food preparation and signage as well.
As for the actual episode itself, Ed Quinn’s Randy is back! I don’t mean to keep harping on how Max’s relationship with him had its parallels with her dating Deke, but this just proves how much the show is shying away from that approach. Not only did their breakup have a resolution, it turns out it wasn’t really the end! He’s back in New York and looking to start a little something. To skip to the end with this particular arc, after Caroline expresses enough concern to actually grill him in a mock trial he admits that he’s committing to staying in the city for one month to try to make things work. A surprising turn of events to be sure.
As for the rest of the episode, Caroline’s movie money finally comes in and the two girls decide to make their Dessert Bar a reality. This means finding some real estate as Han won’t let them expand their cupcake shop into the dish room. Not willing to leave them in the lurch, their boss decides to connect them with Evie [Camille Chen], a realtor who apparently digs him.
Now, this is something I could cover in-depth down below under the “The Title Refers To” feature, but I’ll do it now. Essentially Evie wants to remain a virgin until marriage, but wants to have sex anyway. Now I hate to say it [and to use a slightly NSFW gif after the jump you’ve been warned], but this is actually something that generally terrible show House of Lies did in its episode “Bareback Town”, and that it did pretty well- Continue reading
Posted in Asia, Comedy, race, review, sex, television, writing
Tagged 2 Broke Girls, anal, And the Loophole, asian, Beth Behrs, Camille Chen, Caroline, CBS, Dessert Bar, diner, Evie, House of Lies, Kat Dennings, Korean, Max, pork chip, racist, Randy, review, S5E18, sloppy job, Sophie, specials, tuna malt, what did Evie say