Arts & Entertainment

In the Arts & Entertainment section, The Advocate brings readers all the latest news on Hollywood, Broadway, and beyond. From New York to Los Angeles, The Advocate shines a spotlight on the stars of the screen who are lending their voices to support the LGBT community, as well as gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender individuals who are moving the cultural needle. Discover A-list interviews, the best gay movies and reviews of theater, music, books and television. Learn how Arts & Entertainment can shape national dialogue and can work to advance equality.

With successes in improv, sketch, and stand-up, actor
Stephen Guarino is a rare comedy triple threat.  The Big Gay Sketch Show
veteran fills his dance card with cameos on ABC’s Happy Endings, stand-up appearances, and directing his own big
gay productions.

Guarino dishes to The Advocate on why he doesn’t need a script and how to land a role by being the
most insane person at the audition. 

The Advocate:
Happy Endings
you play an insanely flamboyant gay bestie. You’re doing that stereotype better
than anyone out there right now.
Stephen Guarino: I’ve
cornered the market on that. What’s good about that show is that if you catch
the first episode, Casey Wilson’s character is bored because she’s friends with
a boring gay guy, who is Adam Pally’s character. So the show is smart because
they set me up as the gay that you would hate, like the ’90s gay, who is really
out of fashion right now. I think that’s really smart. Then, ironically, it
ended up working, and they liked it, which is why I now recur on the show. It
was a nice social comment at first, but it kind of turned the myth true that
the bad gay is the fun gay.

Derek is so hyper. 
How do you amp yourself up to play him?
I don’t eat and then I have a lot of Red
Bull and coffee and I just make sure that the writers are OK with me doing
whatever I want because my entrances are all fucking insane. There’s so much
improv on the show. I don’t think in the first two episodes that I said a word
that was on the page.

The line “Slut, come help me out of this split!” makes
me pee a little.
The whole reason that came up was because
in the audition I was against six or seven of my friends for the role, and my
default when I’m nervous is to eat everyone alive. If you’re a receptionist in
a casting office, I’m going to be warming up with you. You are part of my show.
When I went in to audition, I was so crazed — knocking chairs over — and I
ended up doing a split on the boardroom table in front of all of the writers to
punctuate the end of my audition. Then I just started screaming — “Booked it!
Booked it!” — like an asshole and then ran out of the room. I didn’t even wait
to say goodbye. I just left. And
it worked. Then I got to the set on the first day, the split was the first
thing we shot.  

Do you get a lot of straight women asking you to hold
their ta-tas? Not a bad gig, in my opinion.
Ha. Yeah I get a lot of people who
recognize me from the show now, which is nice, and it’s always girls. Never gay
guys. I don’t know if gay guys are watching Happy Endings.

November 22 2011 4:00 AM

Q: I was having dinner with some friends last weekend, and of course the subject of the Penn State scandal came up. One of the straight guests was on a rant about it, and said, "This is a perfect example of why gays shouldn't be parents.” I was so angry I was afraid to say more than just "that's crap!" The group changed the subject immediately — but I feel as though I missed a chance to teach this ignoramus a thing or two. Is there an appropriate way to talk about issues like these without losing my temper?

November 21 2011 4:00 AM

Bookshelf: Best Non-Fiction Transgender Books

November 20 2011 1:15 PM

 As the world memorializes tomorrow's Transgender Day of Remembrance our community will primarily focus on the discrimination and violence faced by trans people. But it's a good time to educate yourself on why transgender people are varied, nuanced,and as complex as any others. While there are dozens of wonderful novels with trans characters (like Leslie Feinberg's Stone Butch Blues or T Cooper's Some of the Parts), non-fiction books offer up the best way to understand and explore the T in the LGBT. There are far too many to mention here, so we've skipped a couple of award winning takes on gender variance including two must-reads, Butch is a Noun by S. Bear Bergman and Nobody Passes by Mattilda Bernstein Sycamore) and three more that should be required reading for college students (Deborah Rudacille's amazing The Riddle of Gender, Transgender Rights by Paisley Currah, Richard M. Juang, and Shannon Price Minter, and The Transgender Studies Reader by Susan Stryker and Stephen Whittle). The rest of these make up our Trans 101 bookshelf.

The Testosterone Files ($11, Seal)
One of the more riveting memoirs by transgender individuals, Max Valerio Wolf's Testosterone Files is raw and aggressive account of the Native American Latino Sephardic poet and performer's journey from lesbian-feminist to transgender man (a viewing of Raging Bull, at 23, plays a role in his coming out).What Valerio does, that raises more than eyebrows, is talk honestly about his new politically incorrect sexual desires, his growing distance from women, and the overall construction of maleness in our culture.


November 19 2011 6:30 PM

Happy Endings may get a lot more, uh, happy endings this season when Max (Adam Pally) gets back together with his former man-love, played by James Wolk (of Lone Star fame).

Pally told E! online's Marc Malkin, "We are going to make out. Most people make out in their relationships, so I would assume so. I would hope that we would be making out."

November 19 2011 2:20 PM

When President Obama declared November National Native American Heritage Month, he did so with a call to “celebrate the contributions and heritage of Native Americans during this month, we also recommit to supporting tribal self-determination, security, and prosperity for all Native Americans.”

That call is a bit too late to offer security to Fred Martinez, but a new film, which broke audience records earlier this year and is now available on DVD, both documents Martinez’s life and the long history of different perceptions of gender and sexuality among the Navajo Nation. Fred Martinez, a Navajo boy who was nádleehí, or male-bodied person with a feminine spirit. When Fred was 16-years-old, Shaun Murphy bludgeoned him to death for being different. The film interweaves the tragic story of a mother’s loss along with Native American cultural traditions that once held places of honor for people of integrated genders. Being nádleehí was, in ancient Navajo culture, a special gift but in modern culture Martinez was not honored; his brutal murder made him one of the youngest hate-crime victims in modern. But the film brings home the resounding message that being true to oneself is the bravest thing anyone can do.


November 19 2011 12:00 PM

Is all male nudity in art and photography necessarily homoerotic? Continuing to explore artists who eroticized the male figure before Tom of Finland's career began, we look at bisexual artist Jared French.

November 19 2011 2:00 AM


 10. MUSIC: Glee: The Music, The Christmas Album Volume 2
’Tis the season for Glee’s second holiday collection, on which Amber Riley nails Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas,” Naya Rivera coos “Santa Baby,” and Heather Morris takes on “Christmas Wrapping” by the Waitresses. Other highlights include “Let It Snow,” a duet by Darren Criss and Chris Colfer, and “Do You Hear What I Hear?” a duet between out diva Alex Newell and fellow Glee Project contestant Lindsay Pearce.


 9. THEATER: Who’s Your Daddy? and David Dean Bottrell Makes Love
See these two Los Angeles solo shows by out writer-performers: Single dad Johnny O'Callaghan opens up about his adoption of a Ugandan orphan in Who's Your Daddy? which runs through December 18 at the Little Victory Theatre; David Dean Bottrell returns with a funny, insider-y account of his Hollywood high jinks through December 15 at the Rogue Machine Theatre. For tickets visit and


 8. BLU-RAY/DVD: West Side Story: 50th Anniversary Edition
Available as a two-disc collector’s edition Blu-ray and as a limited edition four-disc boxed set with Blu-ray, newly restored DVD, tribute CD, and collectible memorabilia, Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins’s Oscar-winning 1961 musical — based on the 1957 Broadway hit — now includes special featurettes that analyze and illuminate the film’s dance sequences and enduring legacy, plus song-specific commentary by out lyricist Stephen Sondheim.

November 18 2011 4:34 PM

Every week, we'll bring you the best of Twitter from LGBT comedians — and our favorite gay jokes from straight comedians, or just whatever made us laugh.  Follow @gaysayer on Twitter now if you want your funny more frequently. To kick us off, a post from your host:


November 18 2011 4:15 PM

 For same-sex couples who want a religious wedding, legally recognized or not, there is good news: More religious bodies than ever are performing same-sex marriages, although some still call them “holy unions” or some other alternative name.

November 18 2011 9:05 AM