Kathy, Tom and Padma return to TV’s gayest network, but newcomers not welcome
As the summer TV season continues, there finally something worth watching. But it’s not all good news.
On the heels of her hour-long special Kathy Griffin Does the Bible Belt — shot in Knoxville, Tenn., but with material she really honed out a few weeks earlier at the Meyerson Symphony Center — comes the sixth season debut this week of Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D List. Everyone’s favorite fag hag (sorry Joan!) returns in the this-is-my-life reality series that trails the comedienne as she goes on tour and promotes her career with characteristic smarm.
This season starts with lots of shout-outs to "my gays," as Kathy is cast on an episode of Law & Order: SVU playing a controversial lesbian activist. She flirts with Chris Meloni, she demonstrates her lesbian kiss with Mariska Hargitay … and she panics at the challenge of real acting. But this is La Griffin, and there’s always a quip around the corner.
The series has really grown on me over the years, not only because Griffin is sassy and real, but because her mom is a star and she doesn’t skimp on the eye-candy. Later in the season, she stalks Levi Johnston. Just the thought of Sarah Palin fuming makes me wanna watch.
Premieres June 15 at 8 p.m. on Bravo.
Kathy’s debut is followed by an unworthy new series, Double Exposure. As with Jersey Couture and Bethenny Getting Married?, this is the kind of show that tries to prove anyone can have a reality series … but probably shouldn’t.
The stars are Markus Klinko and Indrani, two fashion photographers — we are assured they are fabulously famous and in-demand professionals — who used to be lovers and are now business partners that bicker their way through creating "art."
In many ways, it’s a poor fit to follow Kathy because of its blind handling of Klinko’s sexual orientation. Repeatedly, we are assured the fey and flamboyant Klinko was "desperately in love" with Indrani for years, but they couldn’t make it work. Klinko then paws over every shirtless guy in sight.
It might be kinda of campy fun — a real-life version of Lyle, the Effeminate Heterosexual — if the series didn’t ignore it for the most part. (The closest we come to an outing is in episode 2 where a gay man says he "thought Markus was gay" … and is still not quite sure he isn’t.) Kathy loves her gays; why can’t we get some (you’ll pardon the adjective) straight talk?
Who’d care if the series weren’t so artificial. Neither is as compelling to watch as even Jeff from Flipping Out, and certainly not Kathy. Over Exposed might be a better title. Or B-Roll. Leave this on in the camera.
Premieres June 15 at 9 p.m. on Bravo.
We don’t’ really think celebrichef Tom Colicchio is gay, but there’s always hope. The bearish fireplug chef (he can cook!) returns with the new season of Top Chef: D.C., alongside Dallas chef Tiffany Derry. I can fairly report that both Derry and the most obviously gay chef, Arnold Myint, survive the first cut, but as has become increasingly the case with these competition shows, the frontrunners emerge pretty early and you wonder whether things will change much over the next three months. Still, we’re willing to wait it out if only to see if hunky cook Angelo Sosa gets so hot in the kitchen, he feels the need to disrobe. And make beautiful food, of course.
Premieres June 16 at 8 p.m. on Bravo.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition June 11, 2010.