“The Real World: DC” mini-cap: All’s gay, except for Emily

 
 

Every week on The Real World: DC, a couple of the cast members fight. This week Ashley and Andrew get into the ring.

The confrontation is sparked by the most predictable of events — Andrew, once again, is rejected by a girl and does not get laid. He blames it on the D.C. vibe (and not his complete lack of social grace). This leads to a shouting match between Andrew and Ashley about how the other isn’t as hot as he/she thinks he/she is. Then they smear pizza on each other and each other’s beds; then they yell at each other some more. Finally, it gets physical, with Andrew shoving Ashley before he tosses pizza everywhere. Most people would shrug off the roughhousing, but Ashley grew up in a household with an abusive stepfather, so she freaks out and decides to spend the night in a hotel.

Andrew is convinced that Ashley’s response is an attempt at seeking sympathy so that he will apologize, thereby opening up an opportunity for Ashley to talk about her past. He refuses to talk to her and tells the rest of the house that he really doesn’t care about her past. In the confessional he says that he finds the other housemates’ penchant for wearing their life experiences on their sleeves to be irritating. Well, what do you expect from people who sign up for a reality show, Andrew? The ultimate goal of auditioning for a reality show is to convince the casting directors that your life experiences are compelling enough for the general public to experience vicariously, week after week after week.

Eventually, Ashley takes a break from her role as drama queen of the house and concludes that Andrew just isn’t a very deep person and that his purpose on the show is to make off color jokes to the rest of the housemates, who are then supposed to laugh politely on cue. Andrew admits that he never approached her to talk about the confrontation because he was afraid of being yelled at. Then he tries to cuddle with Ashley, who runs away, so Andrew, yet again, does not get laid.

Now that we have that out of the way, the rest of the show is really, really gay!

Mike has a sort-of-boyfriend back home in Colorado who is all about him, but Mike wants to use his free trip to D.C. to explore his sexuality. He brings home a guy named Eric. They make out. Then Eric folds Mike’s laundry. Then they make out some more. Mike is a lucky bastard.

He also takes some of his roommates to his internship at the Human Rights Campaign where he works with veterans discharged from the military under Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. There really isn’t much more to say about Mike, because he seems pretty normal and has a life outside of the house, which includes doing good deeds. Being normal and doing good deeds is reality show suicide. Everyone likes Mike, but on a reality show, it is often better to be a twit. Everyone remembers Puck from The Real World: San Francisco, but no one remembers Jay, the amiable poet/playwright from The Real World: London.

Meanwhile, Callie, despite having a resume that only includes her stint as a short order cook, gets an internship at The Washington Blade, which was, until November, the premiere LGBT newspaper in the country. (It has since folded but has been resurrected as DC Agenda.) Callie admits in the interview that she does not know anything about LGBT rights, but she does have a portfolio of pretty pictures, so she gets the job.

Snark aside, isn’t it refreshing that a straight Republican sorority girl from Texas can take a job at an LGBT publication and no one blinks? Not too long ago in Real World history, the scene would have unfolded as follows: straight southern belle cast member from a small town freaks out that OMG, she has to be around “the gay,” and it ain’t right and yadda yadda and so on and so forth. Then, to the confessional to agonize over working for the gays! Then, conflict with the gay cast member! As the battle heats up, other people in the house intervene. Then they talk. They either come to an understanding or agree to disagree. Then they hug. Kumbaya!

But in this season, except for a brief uncomfortable pause upon Mike’s revelation of his sexuality, no one seems to give a crap about the gay thing. Emily is bi? Crickets chirp. Sure, in the real world, some people are panicking about repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and same sex marriage is considered a “hot button issue,” but on The Real World: D.C., sexuality has thus far been a non-issue. Perhaps this is how the world should operate — sexuality is about as polarizing as the pizza you had for lunch, but if you start throwing actual pizza around, people start looking at you funny.

 
 

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