Hairspray and I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry share July 20 openings.
By Nancy Ford
Rick & Steve, The Happiest Gay Couple in All the World,with its cast of Lego-inspired queer characters, entered our big gay consciousness in 1999 as a short film on the GLBT film fest circuit. Eight years later, creator Q. Allan Brocka (Queer Duck ) has retooled the concept into a sitcom for (who else?) Logo.
Shot in stop-action animation, committed couple Rick and Steve serve up slices of life as seen in their obsessive gay-grooming, vegetarian lesbian-inseminating, bitchy HIV-positive-quipping, shirtless circuit-partying, roadside reststop-cruising, porn star-idolizing community of West Lahunga Beach.
Episode one’s fun starts when Rick and Steve’s best lesbian friends, Dana and Kirstie, wish to start a family. “Conservatives and crack whores shouldn’t be the only ones making babies,” Rick reasons. Cue the Lego turkey baster.
Voiced by familiar icons Alan Cumming, Wilson Cruz, Margaret Cho, and others, punch lines range from funny to hysterical to not so funny to downright insulting. As a result, Rick & Steve seems little more than a slew of mostly negative queer stereotypes played for easy laughs.
But perhaps producers are trying to make the point that if we can’t laugh at ourselves, maybe we just need to pack up our toys and go home.
From Cuppa Coffee Animation, Rick & Steve, The Happiest Gay Couple in All the World premieres July 10 at 9 p.m. on Logo, with repeats throughout the month.
Waters, Waters Everywhere
Sundance jumps on Hairspray’s bandwagon with two ‘trash’ classics
July is turning out to be a big, big month for the man anointed by William S. Burroughs as “The Pope of Trash.” As a July dessert following the sumptuous main course that is June’s pride month, not one, but two of filmmaker John Waters’ trashiest treats are scheduled for a run on Sundance Channel.
Before Johnny Depp buckled his swashes as Capt. Jack Sparrow for the insanely successful Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, he cried a single, perpetual tear as the sensitive bad-boy in Waters’ Cry-Baby (1990). Set in 1954 Baltimore, it features a gaggle of B-stars, including Traci Lords, Troy Donahue, and former Symbionese Liberation Army moll, Patty Hearst. Airs July 31, 11 p.m.
Divine is, well, divine as Dawn Davenport in Female Trouble, Waters’ 1975 tribute to American tabloid culture and the cult of celebrity. Mink Stole, Edith Massey, and other Waters irregulars co-star. Airs July 13, 11 p.m. and July 31, 12:30 a.m.
This double delight, plus the much-anticipated July release of the remake of Hairspray, starring John Travolta (see Movies) makes for one Waters-errific summer. Details: Sundance Channel (www.sundancechannel.com).
Teasing for the Gold
PBS takes us to HairWorld
As in any other contact sport, competitive hairstyling has its own international Olympics. Of sorts. In HairWorld: The Pursuit of Excellence, filmmaker Mark Lewis documents three American trainers as they prepare U.S. teams for the big comb-out throw-down.
But this is no afternoon at SuperCuts. The 31st HairWorld championship was held in Moscow, where no fewer than 800 contestants vied for gold, silver, and bronze medals in timed tests of styling skill. Gentlemen, start your blow dryers. Airs July 25, 7 p.m. on PBS (www.pbs.org).