Happy Friday! Jess was off this week, so thank you for bearing with me and my incessant dives into the SAGs of yore. But we also had fresh content from Tara Reid, from Rihanna, and from Viola, Tracee, and the a whole slew of other big stars at the NAACP Image Awards. And we had some fun discussions about your favorite secondary or unsung actors/characters on TV shows, and the best/worst April Fools’ pranks you’ve ever fallen for, or simply seen. It was a full week, and so, we have a full F&P. Ready?
– First, at GQ, a funny deep dive into the question we are all asking: How the heck Dr. Frasier Crane afforded that Seattle apartment? “How could Frasier possibly pull off that design, let alone his mortgage, on a local radio personality’s salary? Sure, the ‘90s were an economic boom time—but not even that can make up for his out-of-control sherry and opera habit. There was only one way to find out: a demented one-woman investigation about a fictional apartment on a TV show that went off the air over 15 years ago.”
– Transgender Day of Visibility was this past week. There are obviously a lot of places with information for those of us wanting to support the LGBTQ+ community. I recently found Schuyler Bailar, the first trans Division 1 men’s athlete. On Wednesday he posted things you can do to be an ally — including a primer on respectful terminology, links to how to fight bills designed to attack trans rights, links to support groups and trans creators on the Internet. Follow him at @pinkmantaray in general; he’s great. Bitch Media published a piece on transgender cooks changing kitchen culture. And a parent of a trans child, Jesse Thorn, wrote a long and lovely Twitter thread that talked about their experience. There are currently 16 states mulling bills targeted at blocking healthcare for trans youth; Alabama recently passed one. On that note, please take the time to read this Mother Jones profile of Dr. Izzy Lowell, who runs Queer Med in Georgia, a safe space for trans people — youth included — to receive the help and advice and treatments they need. She practices in Alabama as well, and that law means she could lose her license and be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.
– As part of Town & Country’s current issue predicting the return of fun, there’s a piece where a bunch of people that I would term “New York famous” describe the best parties they’ve ever been to; it’s a great combination of Tatler-esque name-dropping and genuinely amusing details, like Andrew Lloyd Webber DJ’ing and a famous jeweler scraping the caviar bowl with his fingers.
– With anti-Asian violence still on the rise — I won’t link to it, but that video of the doormen watching a woman get kicked to and on the ground and then closing the building door as she lay there writhing is horrifying — Marie Claire spoke to six Asian-American leaders, including Sen. Mazie Hirono and actress Lana Condor, about where we go from here.
– From The Washington Post, an 82-year old woman has been dressing up every week for Church even in lockdown, and posts her selfies on Facebook after the service, and they’re GREAT. She looks amazing.
– This personal essay at The New Yorker is piercing: “America Ruined My Name For Me, So I Chose Another One.”
– Regina King directed a stunning photoshoot for W magazine, starting Viola Davis, her husband Julius Tennon, and their daughter Genesis. There’s one shot where Genesis is out of focus in the foreground and the look of pride on Viola’s face as she looks at her daughter is magnificent. I also liked this: “What would you like me to call you?” Genesis politely asked, adding that her mom “might want me to call you Ms. King.” The director said that calling her by her first name was fine, “or you can call me whatever your mom wants you to call me. By the end of this, you’ll be calling me Auntie Regina!” Regina King is crazy talented. Give her all the projects, please.
– However, Chrissy Teigen is fronting People’s most beautiful issue, and to me the main photos are… pretty bad? (They were taken by her good friend, Mike Rosenthal, whom you definitely know if you’ve watched any amount of ANTM.) The kids look adorable on the newsstand cover, but something about her looks off, and this one is very underwhelming. The one of her and her mom is cute, at least.
– Speaking of magazine covers, WHAT is up with this Anya Taylor-Joy shot on Vanity Fair? That may be the most unflattering photo of her that I have EVER SEEN. She looks like the photographer interrupted her while she was taking her pulse.
– Rod Benson wrote a column about the inherent racism in the old NBA dress code, and how Black players worked to overcome it and innovate around it. [SFGate]
– “Who throws a shoe?” Austin Powers once asked. Well, Florida Gators player Marco Wilson did, in a fit of passion, when he helped make a game-saving stop against LSU and the player’s cleat came off in his hand. One penalty and four downs later, LSU kicked a field goal to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat. ESPN wrote about the play, the penalty, the death threats, and how a kid is trying to prove to fans and the NFL that he’s more than just the emotions of that moment.
– I know Clubhouse is a thing, but the idea of taking on another social media platform is exhausting to me, so I haven’t really processed what it is or why I would want to bother. I can barely care about TikTok. The New Yorker’s piece on Clubhouse was helpful to me in that regard.
– Mental Floss wrote a bio of Eliza Carpenter, a history-making Black female jockey and the only Black stable owner in Oklahoma. When can we get a movie?
– Lainey dug into this whole weirdness with Rachel Bilson and Rami Malek, and whether it was weird that Rami made Rachel take down a photo she posted of them. I think I tend to agree that, while it’s within his rights to not want her posting pictures of him that he maybe hasn’t seen, I can’t figure out what the realistic perceived harm was. This all was already forgotten, and would have been forever if hed just let her leave it up and the sands of time had done their thing. Now we’re all going to remember it, and chiefly, his reaction to it (and it’s probably making everyone Google to see if there are old screenshots). #TeamHaveASenseOfHumorAboutYourself.
– Also at Lainey: The Oscars had to walk back its insistence that people show up to accept their awards in person, because that’s completely infeasible for people who — to list but one example — might be filming something right now, and would have to shut down that production for weeks while they a) fly, b) quarantine, c) maybe get an Oscar, d) fly back, e) definitely quarantine and re-enter the set testing protocols. Now they’re saying, in addition to implementing a cluster approach similar to the Grammys but with multiple areas, that they’re going to try to do global “hubs” where some of those overseas folks can go. (I assume that would look like when Schitt’s Creek had a whole Toronto room for its Emmy win?) Is Zoom/Webex/whatever seriously that offensive to them?!?
– And, also at Bitch: a review of the HBO documentary Tina, about the one and only Ms. Turner (honestly, I cannot imagine what other Tina would have even come to mind — it took me a second to come up with some other ones in my head). I’m really excited for that one.
– Celebitchy has coverage of W magazine’s gorgeous, stylized editorial spread with Zendaya and John David Washington. W is doing really good work right now, as they also got the pics that Kirsten Dunst used to announce she’s pregnant with her second child with Landry. YAY. I hope they name it Crucifictorious.
– At Pajiba: They’re working on a Game of Thrones-based STAGE SHOW?!? I think the author is correct that George R.R. Martin et al are throwing a bunch of shit at the wall, trying to make people love the brand again after widespread dissatisfaction with how the HBO show ended. That certainly FEELS true. Will it work? Will a stage show about “the Tourney at Harrenhal” actually help?!?
– You’ve probably seen this going around, but there’s a lively thread on Reddit asking people for the very worst song lyrics. Some of them, I hadn’t even thought about even though I listen to the songs a lot — like, Rocket Man, for example, as someone notes: “Mars ain’t the kind of place to raise your kids / In fact it’s cold as hell / And there’s no one there to raise them // if you did.” Say what?
– Finally, enjoy McSweeney’s piece, “Six Hundred Years of History Explained By April Fools’ Day.” I particularly liked the one that simply reads, “Pantyhose.”