Interludes, Seeking

Interlude: Monologue for a Gay Man

[Spotlight on an empty stage. A gay man in his late 40s walks up to the microphone.]

Let me know when you want to talk about the lack of a Jessica Lange/Angela Bassett/Kathy Bates-type in AHS: 1984, and if that matters. Sure, Lily Rabe was there but that wasn’t enough. I felt energized whenever Leslie Jordan was onscreen — but he’s just one man. You’d need 10 Leslie Jordans to equal one Jessica Lange.

That’s why Connie Britton took that role in the adaptation of that Dirty John podcast, you know, and that weird stint as a 9-1-1 operator in that show that was just people calling emergency services, I guess? She realized she hadn’t done enough work in the trenches yet to be Sarah Paulson, let alone Jessica Lange. And ultimately Connie Britton may not be in that lineage of actors. You get in, show off your amazing hair, and you get out. Her hair really is extraordinary.

(And I hear you wondering, but what even has Sarah Paulson done other than be both of the Lunts for Ryan Murphy and she did this very upsetting short film that I will spoil for you right now: We open on two adults at a children’s indoor play-park and I’m recounting this all from memory so it may have been outdoors but I don’t think it was. The guy, a single dad, tries to hit on Sarah Paulson, and it’s this very awkward potential meet-cute and you’re kinda rooting for the guy who is played by Wes Bentley and it’s fine. He makes me uncomfortable, like, sometimes I’ll imagine being on cross-country road trips with various people — famous and not — and gauge how many miles we’d go before I violently threw myself from the car in discomfort and Wes Bentley is around the 25-mile mark. Anyway. They’re flirting, or he’s flirting, and Sarah Paulson is demurring in sort of a flirty way but ultimately she turns him down because SARAH PAULSON’S BOYFRIEND IS ONE OF THE CHILDREN AT THE EITHER INDOOR OR OUTDOOR BUT I THINK IT’S INDOOR PLAY AREA. This was written by Neil LaBute because of course it was.)

They tried with Lady Gaga. They really did. But what did she do immediately afterwards? Dyed her hair a dirty brown and got into the very first Bradley Cooper vehicle she could. It all comes together if you just think about it. In fact, now that I think about it, they probably cast Lady Gaga in American Horror Story as a way to get her away from Tony Bennett, which was turning into a real Richard Simmons/Not-a-Witch-Housekeeper situation. Do you think Lady Gaga introduced herself as Debbie Reynolds each time she’d meet Tony Bennett and that’s why that whole situation went on as long as it did?

And what has Ryan Murphy done with Frances Conroy? All this time we’ve been wondering — as we should I’m not saying we shouldn’t — where Shelly Miscavige has disappeared to and Ryan Murphy meanwhile just hid Frances Conroy away from us FRANCES IF YOU’RE OUT THERE AND CAN READ THE SOUND OF MY WORDS WE LOVE YOU AND WANT TO KNOW THAT YOU’RE OKAY Shelly Miscavige is just going to be one of those eternal mysteries that we’ll have to learn the answer to after we die and God says, “That’s what you were paying attention to???”

And we’ll try to explain that we can pay attention to a lot of things with the same passion because we have these gorgeous brains that he gave us and we can analyze and compartmentalize and also find time to look in wonder at the night sky and he’ll say, “So, that’s a yes then?”

Frances Conroy was in the first season of Castle Rock with an astonishing Maine accent that Kathy Bates must have coached her through. Remember when Kathy Bates played a Baltimorian in that one season of AHS where Jessica Lange sang Life on Mars? Bates’s accent was atrocious.

Anyway I better let you go. But do get back to me about the lack of Jessica Lange, Angela Bassett, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, absolutely NOT Joan Collins she was TERRIBLE and not chosen with care–it’s the first time Murphy’s been ironic with his camp and it’s uncountable to watch.

(Uncomfortable. Not uncountable. Uncomfortable. Stupid auto-correct. The fuck did it even think “uncountable”? I shouldn’t call my phone an “it.” And I’m trying to do that less — get ungrateful about technology, and not think about the conveniences I have in sort of a respectful way. It’s a miracle that I rub my thumb over liquid crystal and these love letters appear for you to see. And I do love you so very much. There are these line from a west-coast singer I like a lot, McKinley, from the album “Big Top Shop Talk” called Astronaut:

[ahem(pretend I have a beautiful singing voice]
He’s in love with the world. Stunned by her size.

That’s all out of my range, btw. I think I’m a tenor that can pitch in on bass if no one shows up. But I think I’m leaving my new church? I mention that only because we’ve, you and I, Facebook, have branched so far away from who will see this, curled under in the depths of this parenthetical like a Fierce Shrub, that I can hide things. Sort of say it, but not, which is the best part of not saying something you shouldn’t have said in the first place. It’s nothing to do w/the church itself. Everyone is lovely. I sang (poorly; so v poorly) in the choir, though I loved this round we’d sing the children out to Sunday School with, but I’m high and the only round I can hear in my head is Frère Jacques but it’s totally not Frère Jacques. The minister is…fine. She’s going through a lot and it’s not my place to tell and oh my God that’s SUCH a Baptist thing to say, “It’s not my place to tell.” “It’s not my place to tell” is code for “I desperately want to tell.” Ask any Southerner, Baptist, or Southern Baptist. Y’all know what I’m saying. It’s just my changing relationship with what my thoughts are on Christology/messiahship; I don’t know where that puts me. So Church is awkward because this message of salvation through Christ isn’t supported as firmly as I’d like in the text & maybe salvation is symbolic anyway?)

Here are the actors who should not have been in AHS:

  • Joan Collins
  • Lena Dunham
  • That one bald guy from The Shield
  • Patty Lupone LISTEN. THEATER GAYS. JUST CALM. THE FUCK. DOWN.
  • There’s a bunch of white-boy actors who blend together, not Evan Peterson though, he’s perfect, or at least almost perfect, but I think his break with Emma Roberts, and that whole–

You know here’s the thing. I mean, I’m not, you know, dwelling on this, I don’t want you to think that I can’t let this go or anything, but I can’t let this go just yet. Patty is Combative Camp and they already had Jessica, and this activated that ugly, competitive part of Patty– shit. It’s Patti. Patti LuPone to be exact. I just felt she pulled focus when she’s supposed to play straight what even were those choices in Coven?

Okay. Can’t wait to hug your neck. I love you so much!

Your friend,

Mike

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