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chanson

Real World Portland

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So, I figured I'd start this topic to centralize all of the discussions about the Real World Portland, the best show on TV.

 

Episode 2 was so damn good! I seriously cannot get enough of this season. And after the snoozefest in St. Thomas I think the producers found an amazing assortment of people to put in the house this season.

 

The episode starts out with Anastasia and Jordan continuing their argument from the last night. It seems to me like Jordan, although hot headed and cocky, was actually making some effort to reconcile with Anastasia, who was not having any of it. I think that was dumb, because as it turns out Jordan wasn't completely full of shit like the girls were saying. I don't know, I'm sure they're both in the wrong here but it seems like Anastasia could at least hear the man out instead of shutting him down every time he opens his mouth.

 

Then we find out that Averey "[is] a very sexual person and if [she's] feeling someone [she has] a very hard time controlling [her] urges." Then Averey commits another classic Real World rookie blunder by telling her grandma that she told Johnny that "[he's] a good guy and everything but [she's] not gonna fuck [him]." By doing this she has ensured that she will, in fact, fuck him. Indeed, by the end of the episode she has, in her words, fucked him. Also her grandma seems to think that fucking someone means "laying big old wet ones on him," which could be a filthy euphemism for some dirty old person sex move but as far as I know means kissing someone. Does Averey's grandma know about sex? Should the government be providing sex ed for seniors? These are the kinds of issues you have to watch the Real World to hear about because the mainstream media (I call them the lamestream media, am I right?) just won't cover them.

 

After that the housemates go on a bike ride to a fountain along the waterfront so that they can pedo it up. They remove most of their clothing and run around in the fountain with small children. Clearly MTV is trying to get that lucrative pedophile market that remains so elusive to most networks.

 

Jessica's happy because she has no friends beside her mother and then tells Jordan how to act. Then we find out that Jordan's dad physically abused him. But he grew up in the country so that makes it okay.

 

The guys go to one of the 200,000 crossfit gyms in the Pearl District and then in a normal, typical, casual conversation about anal sex, Marlon reveals that he's had sex with a dude. It's cool that he felt comfortable revealing that. Anastasia is super sensitive about it. In fact, I think she's the most sensitive person in the house.

 

Jordan and Jessica get in an argument about what constitutes middle class. In this argument I can sort of see where Jordan's coming from, and in major cities, especially on the coasts, $50,000 a year doesn't go that far but I'm sure that in Fayetteville, NC and most other small cities and military towns it's actually quite a decent income for a family. However, technically, $50,000 a year does put one comfortably in the middle class although there is a lot of debate about what actually constitutes middle class.

 

Johnny observes Alton's precedent and shows his dick.

 

Jordan and Marlon go to the obligatory gay bar.

 

Jordan and Jessica argue about a hookah.

 

Pretty Great!

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Episode 3:

 

"Everyone has sex, that's how we all came to this planet" states Anastasia with the finesse and gravitas of a gynecologist who is late in her career, unable to be phased by any sort of reproductive issue raised during the pedestrian conversation in which she is currently engaged. Her companions, Jessica and Averey, hang on her every word, their sexual inexperience betrayed by every word they utter. Anastasia smiles, "now you can just Johnny it up" she remarks to Averey, who was desperately seeking, and has now implicitly received, permission from the house's resident sexual maven to engage in the frequent debaucherous sexual encounters that are allowed to lurk only in the deepest recesses of her twisted mind.

 

This newfound sexual freedom unleashes itself on the women of the house. "Why didn't the boys come again" asks Averey curiously as her and Joi peruse the aisles of a boutique brimming with sexual devices for fetishes and inclinations of every sort. "Do you try stuff on at a sex store" asks Johnny rhetorically but with a curiosity that is filled with both fear and wonder, the twin emotions battling for dominance over his anxiously aroused mind.

 

"I don't think he's ever been handcuffed. I don't think he's ever been bondaged" states Averey incredulously. She follows her incredulity by challenging "I'm gonna get you to do it and you're going to love it." Her challenge opens the door to a wonderful world filled with sexual intrigue and potential crimes she may be willing to commit in order to be sexually satisfied.

 

So ends the first act.

 

PS-

 

Apparently Joi was in my graduating class at UW...

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Episode 8

Apparently Jessica is Avery and Anastasia's little sister, always chasing after them yelling "WHAT ARE YOU GUYS DOING?" and "WHERE ARE YOU GOING?" and "CAN I PLAY?" For some reason, this combined with her prudish views towards lovemaking has isolated Jessica from the majority of the roommates. She tries to confront her older sisters about this, but they just tell her that they just want to spend time with each other. I think that a more direct approach in this situation would have been more appropriate. I was waiting for Anastasia to tell Jessica "NO! YOU'RE ANNOYING AND WHILE YOU'RE AN ATTRACTIVE PERSON OVERALL, YOU JUST DON'T MEASURE UP WITH AVERY AND I AESTHETICALLY."

 

When Jessica took the group to go motor crossing, we knew Jordan was going to be awesome at it and that most of the roommates would be laughably bad at it due to inexperience. But I was interested to see how Jessica would do. This whole episode she's been talking about how she has been riding dirt bikes most of her life and that it is her favorite thing to do ever. Was she going to be totally badass on these bikes like Jordan, or was she going to face-plant like Anastasia? As it turned out, neither. She could ride competently, but overall her skill matched her personality: boring.

 

Nia is my least favorite roommate, but she's the reason I tune in because I keep waiting for something horrible to happen to her. Instead of knowing when she was supposed to work, she called up a random employee at the bar and asked them. Instead of asking someone who would actually know, like the manager. Since random employee didn't see her on the schedule, Nia knew she had the day off. Which was good because the job was beneath her when she has all sorts of guys giving her money because that's just how awesome she is. Except that she was scheduled to work that day and by not showing up their boss thought that was Nia's way of quitting. In past seasons of Real World, getting fired from the day job meant you got kicked out of the house. But Nia is so much better than everyone else ever, making her above this rule. But when Nia finds out she's fired, she's pissed off because NO ONE FIRES NIA WITHOUT GETTING PUT IN THEIR PLACE! So she shows up to work to complain about getting fired for not showing up to work. After verbally putting the boss in her place, Nia couldn't help but do one more awesome thing before she left: she filled a 20 oz cup with pop AND LEFT WITHOUT PAYING FOR IT. BECAUSE NIA IS THAT FUCKING HARDCORE.

 

Stay tuned for future episodes of Real World: Nia, featuring Portland (they haven't officially changed the title to this, but I figure it's just a matter of time).

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Good thing Nia put that dumb bitch Brett in her place... Who does Brett think she is? Nia or something? Hell, Nia worked at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel and fucks professional athletes for a living. Seriously, Brett was really starting to take over the show and was getting way too cocky, Nia did her a favor.

 

I also was really fond of the uniting proletariat vibe that the Real World seemed to cultivate this episode. It really showed those capitalist fat cats who's boss. Next week they'll be organizing a union and committing random acts of violence against management. Very post-post-modern of the folks at MTV. Maybe some of the cool-aid in Portland is starting to work on them (as long as they don't have to give up their BMWs and six-figure paychecks). The backlash against the Real World in Portland would be notable if it weren't so predictable. Then again, everything that happens in Portland is backlash-related. No one actually does anything positive or constructive there unless it's ironic or involves free cigarettes.

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You could say a lot of things about Anastasia after this week's episode, but did anybody else think she looked remarkably like Sheldon from Garfield and Friends when she was waiting for her boyfriend's cab to arrive? Maybe it's because her nickname's Bird and that just puts eggs on the mind by association, but seriously, that dress made her look like an egg with two legs sticking out of it.

 

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On a scale of 1 to Bjork's Swan Dress I give it a half klansman.

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What a great episode after the snooze fest last week. So many things to cover, I'm not even sure where to start.

 

I guess the best place to start is with the roommate whose misery I take so much glee in, Jessica. Her boyfriend (Tyler?) seems like a nice guy. He seems just as boring as Jessica, which makes them the perfect match. But the conversation she was having on the phone was killing me. Even EDITED it took way too long and clearly spelled out Jessica's problem. I even thought "there's no way she was saying all that stupid stuff in a single conversation. They had to have edited some other phone conversations in there." But I rewound and checked, she's wearing the same clothes throughout the whole thing! To his credit, Tyler went along with it like a champ, until the end when any other member of the male species would have ran screaming into the night. After saying she wants to move to Portland to be with him, she's completely confounded why he might be acting odd. Remember, depending on the editing, at MOST this relationship is three months old. Of course his next step is to break up with her via email. If you are able to, I highly suggest pausing the episode when the email is being displayed full screen, it's a great read. Especially because they don't really spend much time explaining what the email says. They really only say that he's breaking up with her and she is super pissed at him. Without the context of the email, you might assume that Tyler broke up with her in a really awful, insensitive way and you would be sympathizing with Jessica. If you read the email, you'll see that Tyler took the time to write a really nice, well thought out email. As far as break ups through emails are concerned, this is the best possible scenario. It basically says that she's a great person and he really likes spending time with her, but he is really uncomfortable with the idea of Jessica completely uprooting her life to move to Portland, just to be with him. He talks about how they haven't been together that long and it's under odd circumstances. If they broke up afterwards, he would feel awful for being the reason that she's now in Portland, away from her friends and family, all alone. This is actually pretty reasonable! He's taking a very hard look at their relationship and coming to a pretty realistic conclusion. Jessica tells Nia that this is why she hates men, and that men can't be trusted, but it looks like Anastasia is the only one wondering if that maybe, just maybe, "could the problem be with Jessica?". But this is where Jessica's story intersects with Marlon's.

 

Marlon is having a crisis of faith. He feels that he is not living up to the ridiculously high expectations of himself, his father, and his religion. So after receiving a pep talk from his dad, he promptly gets drunk and bangs a chick. Marlon feels awful for doing something that is completely normal, and for being a relatively normal guy. I'm surprised this whole 'faith' conversation didn't come up during the 'I banged a dude once' conversation. Seems like one might affect the other. So now, Marlon and Jessica are kindred spirits! He feels that he is being an awful christian and she got dumped. Totally the same thing! So they go to church together (a church where Jessica is hilariously and obviously out of place)! And everyone's problems are solved! Marlon invites Jessica to his recording sessions in some dude's closet and even has her lay down a track. Which brings me to the best part of the episode: The line that they have Jessica rap is "Bitches be thirsty and junk!"

 

I'm imagining the conversation between Marlon and the show's producer:

 

Producer: Ok, we don't have a lot of time left so pick your best line for Jessica to sing and it will be really heartwarming and the episode will end on a high note.

Marlon: Way ahead of you. My best line is "Bitches be thirsty and junk!"

Producer: ....

Marlon: I know, right? It's amazing!

Producer: You know what, we don't have to decide now. Take some time to think on it and let me know.

Marlon: The more I think about it, the better the line sounds. This has to be the line. This is going to launch my music writing career. This is the pinnacle of everything I've done and anything I will ever do. This is musical genius.

Producer: Fuck it. I stopped caring five minutes ago. Lets just get it over with.

 

There are so many reasons why this line pops out at me so much. First off, it's just plain awful. It's dumb, it makes no sense, and it's just plain bad. Second, Marlon had just said fifteen minutes ago that he wants to be a better person in the eyes of god which includes not hooking up with random chicks and SWEARING! I know, I know, the word 'bitch' has been relegated to being a Diet Swear Word, but you know he wouldn't be comfortable saying that in front of his pastor. But even if we ignore this, and we say that he has understood that he can't be perfect and he is just going to live his life, then WHY would you use the word 'junk'? It's like he's trying to compromise/mesh his religious values and his desire to live a fun life, but failing at both.

 

Where the fuck has Jordan been in the past two episodes? Did he get all his drama out of the way early and they ran out of usable footage of him?

 

And finally, the previews for the upcoming episode let us know that this is the episode that we have been waiting for all season! Nia gets into an all-out brawl with Avery and Jordan! This is going to be good.

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And shit went down! I realized the problem with violence though, the one with the weakest grasp on morality is usually the victor. While it was satisfying to see Avery punch Nia a good couple times (and it was interesting to see that Johnny was smart enough to not hit a female on camera), Nia was unfortunately the victor because she doesn't care about any repercussions. I've decided to bring back my sociopath label for Nia. She's violent at the drop of a hat, will lie in wait to sucker punch people, hit from behind, and create an entirely new reality afterwards which features her as the victim. Marlon, Anastasia, and Jessica are practically complicit in her actions by choosing to not vote her out, which causes Johnny and Avery to leave the house. It's too bad there were only three days left at this point because I think people might have been more willing to throw her out if they were looking at spending that much more time with her.

I am really looking forward to he reunion episode to see Nia confronted by the host about this fight.

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I don't know, man. I felt strangely uncomfortable about the last couple of episodes. It just felt like there was too much happening in the last three days. There wasn't enough time to digest and then see what happened after shit went down. I'd have felt better if some of the cast members could have provided more pedantic commentary about how they felt about each event rather than just rushing from one high to another. There needs to be more time for people to fixate on tiny things and get super pissed about them. That's what I expect from The Real World, not this fast-paced drama coaster, save that for the Challenge.

 

The reunion special was pretty great though.

 

So stoked for the Challenge: Rivals II!

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