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Entries in Sex and the City (13)


HBO’s LGBT History: Sex on TV

Manuel is working his way through all the LGBT-themed HBO productions.

Last week we had a ball spending time with Big and Little Edie at Grey Gardens. This week, I wanted to do something a little different so I picked out six key gay sex scenes from HBO’s TV history to talk about the network’s unabashed attempts at indulging its audiences in rather raunchy scenarios.

HBO, untethered to the whims of the FCC and its attendant parochialism, has often flaunted its ability to depict sex openly. From its Real Sex docs to Game of Thrones, this has been a great selling point for the network: “It’s not TV, it’s HBO… and that means we can get away with some serious nudity, guys!” Thus, while LGBT representation on network television was often chided for closeting actual sex (think Will & Grace, Ellen), HBO was able to offer titillating scenes that openly addressed and even represented sex as an integral part of these character’s lives.

In an era where every other American Horror Story episode will offer plenty of skintastic gay sex, and where network dramas like Empire and How to Get Away with Murder have been giving us hot and heavy scenes that keep pushing what’s allowed on prime time, some of these scenes may look quaint, but it is undeniable that they definitely paved the way for the embarrassment of riches we are now confronted with. Lots of NSFW goodies ahead!

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HBO’s LGBT History: Sex and the City (2008, 2010)

After a week off (festivals sure do take it outta you, but did you catch up on all of our fun NYFF coverage?), we're back to our regularly scheduled programming. Last we spoke, I howled in laughter watching Curb Your Enthusiasm’s “pre-gay” kid, Greg in that show’s current series finale (there’s always rumors they’ll make more episodes, but Larry David seems to be in no rush). This week, we continue looking at another HBO comedy staple, the endlessly parodied, needlessly dismissed Sarah Jessica Parker series, Sex and the City...

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HBO’s LGBT History: 1998, The Year in TV

Manuel is working his way through all the LGBT-themed HBO productions...

 Last week we revisited one of Angelina Jolie’s best performances in Gia, the first HBO film to center on a female LGBT protagonist. Today we're focusing solely on TV in a pivotal year for HBO: 1998, a year before a certain mob guy would redefine a network and the TV landscape in general.

1998. What a year! The months apart premieres of Sex and the City and Will & Grace could easily cement it as one of the gayest years in recent memory, but that would tell only part of the story. The year after Ellen’s “The Puppy Episode,” gays were, seemingly, “going mainstream.” Yes, the troubled production and distribution of 54 showed there was still hesitancy over telling openly queer stories in Hollywood (especially those that stepped outside known gay narratives), but films like The Object of my Affection, High Art, Gods and Monsters, Wild Things, Velvet Goldmine (Gia even!) would continue to pave the way for Hollywood’s embrace of an exploration of gay suburban desperation in Sam Mendes and Allan Ball’s American Beauty the following year.

And on TV? Well, HBO offers us a great cross-section of how networks were diversifying its stories to include more (if not broader) LGBT representation.

Oz, Sex & The City and more after the jump...

Tracey Takes On… “...Marriage.” (January 4 1998)

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Lost in Translation: Dubbing Movies Into Foreign Languages

Sebastian here with a heartfelt criticism of dubbing movies for foreign markets.

Lake Bell in "In a World…," which isn't about dubbing, but it's a great movie and I needed a picture here.

This Monday I took a four hour train ride to see a movie.

I've done crazier things in the name of cinephilia. A few years ago I coerced my friends to take a day trip to Strasbourg just so I could see Steve McQueen's Shame three months before it opened here in Germany. But this time it was't about some small independent film. This time I went to all this trouble to watch a movie called Avengers: Age of Ultron. Maybe you've heard of it?

The superhero sequel had already been playing in German cinemas for a week and it's even playing in my small town. So why go elsewhere?

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Tues Top Ten: Sex and the City Episodes

Jose here to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the end of Sex and the City. That's right, this weekend marked a whole decade since that last time we tuned in to HBO for a new episode. In the ten years since it went off the air, the show has inspired a myriad of copycats that ranged from the terrible (hello Lipstick Jungle) to the wonderful (hi Girls), as well as more think pieces than you can shake a stick at. And while the popularity of the Cosmopolitan as a drink of choice, has completely dwindled (what are successful women drinking nowadayas?), elements of the show's lingo and their bits of wisdom ("he's just not that into you") have become part of our daily life.

I am very aware that many people out there absolutely loathe the show but as a teenager I dreamt of nothing more than moving to NYC and pursuing a writing career like Carrie Bradshaw. I also dreamt of quitting cigarettes, finding a wonderful apartment and a great man to go with it. During the decade the show's been off the air I made some of those dreams come true and the following Top Ten is a celebration for those who, like me, found their inner "fabulous" because of this show.


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Sex & The Linky

Sound on Sight has a massive post about famous ongoing director/muse collaborations: Liv & Ingmar, Lynch & Dern, Fassbinder & Schygulla, etcetera...
Empire Chris Evans is becoming a director with 1:30 Train, a romantic caper about a woman trying to catch the 1:30 train (with the help of Chris Evans, who will co-star)
Pajiba celebrates the release of 2 Guns. "Boom, you've been Denzel'd"

In Contention 15 awards players still looking for distribution including one I hadn't heard of Tracks with Mia Wasikowska crossing the desert with John Curran (The Painted Veil) directing. I've been thinking that the Best Actress chart is leaning a little 'woman of a certain age' for Oscar's taste (if not for mine) so maybe Mia and are peers are just in hiding right now? 
David Poland says that the bullshit myth is that originals don't make big money at the box office and it's only sequels that did. He backs it up with titles.
Variety Whoa. are the Weinsteins going to get Miramax back. A merger may be in the works
Cinema Blend on the list of possible Bale/Batman replacements for that Superman/Batman team up movie. Surprisingly they're not all super famous with Richard Armitage (The Hobbit) and Max Martini (Pacific Rim) both on the list. Weirdly there appears to be little thought of Joseph Gordon-Levitt despite that The Dark Knight Rises Robin set up.

You guys, I can't decide if this "What if Woody Allen directed The Wolverine" is funny or not. Help me decide.

I think I'm in the place of LOL without the OL part. So, maybe not? I like it in concept!

/Film Warner Bros is still trying to get that Akira Without Japanese People abomination made.
MNPP The Golden Girls dollhouse? Amazing!
Signs and Sirens hates on Blue Jasmine. My review will be up tomorrow.
Coming Soon Josh Trank says the rumors about Miles Teller being Reed Richards in the Fantastic Four are not true. Good -- I like Miles Teller a lot but he's about 90% wrong for that role -- but it's going to be terrible anyway. Why must Fantastic Four movies be so terrible? 

Finally, I feel I've been remiss in not linking up to Emily Nussbaum's great great rescue piece on "Sex and The City" in The New Yorker. People have been discussing it online for a few days but I hadn't mentioned it. I'm so glad that a writer as scalpel-sharp as Nussbaum is a fan and performs this reputation resuscitation operation. It's too bad that the show's rep suffered after the two theatrical features drifted towards becoming what people always accused the show of being. Which it never truly was. I especially love her (correct) assertion that Carrie Bradshaw was the first female anti-hero on television. Carrie was of course reviled for it whereas her male counterparts in terrible behavior are regularly championed by fans and critics. I know people probably think I harp on gender politics too much here at the blog but what's happened to Sex & The City is a classic example of sexism at work. Canons are one of the best places to see the power of the heteronormative patriarchy thrown into obvious relief. "The greatest this!" and "The greatest that!" lists and the people who make them like critics organizations and awards shows and such often dismiss "feminine" identified films, tv, genre or entertainments as lesser than merely be excluding them from the conversation. But if you can't include "Sex and the City" as one of the shows that was instrumental in ushering in television's golden age -- just as crucial as "The Sopranos" -- you just weren't watching closely enough.


Leo, Lists, Ladies, and Link Love

French Toast Sunday 5 best summer movies? Confession: I have never seen Crooklyn but always wanted to. 
Gawker on Cher's wiggy performance on The Voice 
The Local did you hear this story about how a French teacher an 11 year-old class Saw? WTF? At least pick a classic horror with artistic historical merit.
Guardian the next Star Wars sequels are looking for a teenage female lead? Whoa. I guess Hunger Games and Twilight are even more influential than they appear to be

Variety Miss Saigon is returning to the boards but I'm personally still curious as to why the movie version has never happened?
My New Plaid Pants the three things you need to see from the Anchorman 2 trailer
Los Angeles Times Show Tracker the women of Mad Men speak about the impending end
Film Flare awww, I had totally forgotten about "Elizabeth Taylor" on Sex & the City 
The Cinematic Katzenjammer Shailene Woodley cut from The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (ahem, 5). What, no Mary Jane? Seems odd to cut her just as her star is rising
Empire speaking of which. Here's more on her Hunger Games which is called Divergent
Hark, A Vagrant! takes on The Secret Garden 

On Leo...
Awards Daily asks why Leonardo DiCaprio is so often ignored by the Academy (brought on by The Wolf of Wall Street trailer). I know he has many devout fans and I am often criticized for not adoring him wholeheartedly these days but I disagree (and muchly) with the notion that his work has improved with age. I still think he has beautiful moments in several of his recent star turns but as a whole from film to film he is not pushing himself and is deeply repetitive in his acting choices (not just in the surface role similarities I've mocked like his run through The Dead Wives Club).

But I harbor no illusions that the Academy shares my opinion of his gift...

I think it's as simple as this: Leading Men who are considered beautiful always have to fight harder for Oscar love. That's all there is to it (well, that and them preferring five other people each time he's missed out). Paul Newman and Jeff Bridges, two of the best screen actors of all time, didn't win until their 60s and Leo isn't nearly that good! Plus he's only 38 years old. Leo has the same amount of acting nominations as Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise and Johnny Depp and the similarities are instantly noticeable, aren't they? Good looking marquee value men who are often viewed as STARS first, ACTORS second (whether or not that's an accurate description). I have no doubt Leo will eventually win -- and I think nominations will be much easier to come by in his 40s after whatever hiatus he plans to take -- but I think if it doesn't happen for him with Wolf, he'll have to wait until at least his mid40s and possibly much longer as many desirable leading men have had to in the past. I'm not sure why everyone expects the rules to be different for this one actor. The question of why not yet is as simple as the male dominated Oscar's completely obvious binary gender standards: they usually like to award female actors for being young and hot and, to some extent, new; and they usually like to award male actors for their bodies of work when they have stood the test of time (and are less sexually threatening).



This Sunday...
Oooh, I totally wanna watch this. Oprah is talking to four black actresses on their unique struggles in Hollywood on her new network. (Do I even get this network? I do not know)

Alfre Woodard (that's enough right there!), Viola Davis (YES), Phyllicia Rashad (makes sense) and Gabrielle Union (Bring it!) which is a classy lineup, don'cha think?

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