There’s a new webseries causing a stir (and not just in that region below your belt). It’s been referred to as the gay Sex and the City, and that’s an apt comparison considering that Hunting Season focuses on a gay blogger dealing with sex, the city of New York and his three best friends.
That blogger is Alex (Ben Baur, whose voiceovers for the show are far more nuanced than Carrie’s), a young 20-something who finds dating in NYC to be a difficult task, although hooking up with guys comes easily. Cruising comes easily for Tommy (Marc Sinoway) as well, who has mastered the art of using and losing guys. Nick (Gayby’s Jack Ferver) is the “older” guy of the group who is actually looking for a relationship—a seeming rarity for Manhattan gays. Lastly, there is prudish TJ (Jake Manabat), the guy in a long-term relationship that seems to be headed for disaster.
If these characters sound like longstanding clichés, that’s probably because they are. Any fan of SATC could easily deduce which of the girls they match up with. But as we all know, stereotypes are based in fact; and the fact is, it is easy to look at your circle of friends and see these same types in your life. These characters are relatable.
These characters are also likable—thanks in no small part to the talented actors portraying them (even at his smarmiest, you would be tempted to go home with Tommy). It’s easy to see bits of yourself in these characters. It also helps that the skillful Jon Marcus (director of the series) and Adam Baran write these characters, making it easy for the actors to submerge into these roles.
This webseries is based on a book (title The Great Cock Hunt), which was based on a blog (also called “The Great Cock Hunt”)—making for an origin story that mimics SATC’s creation. Packed with steamy sex scenes and wry humor, the show plays well in its 10-minute episode format, giving salacious glimpses into Alex’s life while still managing to tell a succinct and satisfactory story. As the series unfolds you’ll find yourself wondering if Hunting Season’s own Mr. Big—Lenny (Walker Hare)—will win over Alex’s affections or if his hunting season will never end.
You can watch this series on Wednesday nights at 9pm on LogoTV.com; and then you can support the show by purchasing the uncensored versions on HuntingSeason.TV the following morning—and trust me, they are worth it!
Posted by xoxojk on September 26, 2012
The titular Red Book is Harvard’s way to keep the alumni connected to each other. Every five years, graduates enter updates about their lives in anticipation of meeting again for their upcoming reunion. This book finds our four heroines (graduates of the Class of 1989) meeting up for their 20th year reunion.
You would think a book about four women who were the “best” of friends in college would involve lost of fun adventures with the gang, but this novel rarely puts all the women in the same room together on the weekend of their reunion. We never get the sense of their chemistry as friends (there are not Sex and the City diner sex talks or Desperate Housewives poker games). Instead, author Deborah Copaken Kogan weaves complicated and indulgent stories about four women who just happen to know each other.
All four women are facing cliché unhappiness in their lives, and the setting of their great, old school of Harvard teaches them to refocus what’s left of their lives on being happy. Addison is a spoiled housewife and wannabe artist in a loveless marriage who faces bankruptcy. Clover (the stock African American character) has rushed into a marriage with a man who doesn’t want to have kids, so she steals sperm from her college ex-boyfriend. Mia has a happy marriage to a famous film director and is raising four wonderful children, but her yearnings to return to the stage have cast doubts on her life choices. And plain Jane (a Vietnamese girl adopted by an American family who now lives in Paris), struggling with her mother’s recent death from cancer, learns that her mother, deceased husband, and all other men in her life have cheated on their spouses.
The first third of the book is a pure recounting of each character’s entire lives up to the point of the reunion. The book continues to weave remembrances and excessive inner monologues into the story to distract from the lack of action. Kogan uses these inner monologues to address her thoughts on current events—if you consider 2009 current—and various stances on morality and mortality. Though there are some great moments when Kogan’s critique of pop culture resonates, they are mostly lost in the convoluted storytelling.
It could be that I’m just too young to sympathize with these older women (it’s been 2 years since I graduated college, not 20), but nothing about these characters feels genuine. They come off as contrivances for a clichéd story about following your dreams. The entire plot of the book can be found in the opening and ending Red Book entries by the characters (don’t get me started on how the three annoying characters have happy endings and the one character I managed sympathy for gets a crapshoot of an ending).
The Red Book tries to be so much that if fails to be anything at all.
Posted by xoxojk on June 21, 2012