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The Pat Robertson Question


January is great when you're a big TV addict. It's a new season and a bunch of new shows start up, a fresh chance to be entertained. But I have questions. I have a lot of them, actually. And I'll narrow it down to the ones I can't find answers for anywhere else.

*Why did they get rid of the lesbian on White Collar? I started watching this over the holidays. I heard it was good. And I liked that we got a lesbian agent right off the bat. She was pretty (I know that's not a reason to like someone, but still) and her character seemed like it might get interesting. Then came the second episode stored in my TiVo and bam. Gone. This sucks because, while it seems like there are more homosexual characters than ever on TV, whether on scripted or reality series, we still get presented with a very few unchanging types. She seemed to be nonstereotypical. So sure, recast her and make her straight. I don't care. Not bothered at all.

*Why is the announcer guy on MANswers always shouting at me? It's this show where they answer important questions that "real men" want to know about. Like how much beer will fill a swimming pool, stuff like that. And then they show you some jiggly boobs. Brilliant idea, really. And boobs are nice to look at -- even gay guys know that. But why all the screaming? Did everyday masculinity suddenly get reduced to nonstop road/roid rage while I was busy eating all that Christmas ham?

*Do I really have to give Modern Family another shot? Because I watched like four episodes, which I think is plenty. But it seems as though every single person I meet and every single real TV critic I read is apeshit for this show. I may, in fact, be the only person annoyed by it. And now people are annoyed at me because of it. It's just that I get a Desperate Housewives vibration every time I look in its direction. That typical gay sensibility that leaves me cold. Am I just flat-out wrong? I'm willing to admit it if I am. I guess I'll relaunch the season pass.

*When will Fantasia listen to her Ma'Dear and Knowledge and kick Teeny out of the pool house? Translation: Fantasia's auntie and some dude who calls himself "Knowledge" (yet to be proven) need to help Fantasia get rid of her no-job-having mooch of a brother who keeps trying to guilt his sister into paying for his every breath. Oh, wait, sorry, I'm talking about Fantasia: For Real. It's the reality show about the best winner of American Idol ever and how she's being drained of money by her family, none of whom seem to be concerned that none of them have jobs.

*When will gays get their own Conveyor Belt of Love? Not that we should aspire to this kind of thing, but it sure was fun watching poor, lady-craving dipshits go on the beggars-offensive to catch the attention of a group of grown-up Mean Girls, all of whom could wave the guys off with a "Not Interested" sign and a snotty remark. I see that kind of stuff happen in gay bars, so it would be a literal no-brainer to put it on TV. And if Logo is really going to produce a reality show called Kept, about men who want to find sugar daddies, then why not a whole televised block of dating pool aversion therapy?

*Who's watching Pawn Stars, that show about guys who run a pawn shop? Are they the audience who finds lunkheaded logger reality series Ax Men too dense with brisk banter? I've now tried both of them. And Ax Men, if I had to choose at gunpoint, would be the one I watch -- although I'd really sooner go for Deadliest Catch -- but most of it boils down to "WATCH OUT FOR THAT TREE!" and I can get that on old reruns of George of the Jungle.

*Will someone please translate the new Sundance Channel series Be Good Johnny Weir from Super-Gay into English for me? It's about the championship figure skater guy who makes Christian Siriano seem like Ed Asner. OK, just kidding, I have no trouble understanding the language of Super-Gay. I watch Project Runway every week. And I don't hate his adrenaline-powered flamboyance. I think that dude is being exactly who he is. And since he can be who he is while dressed in a swan-like leotard and doing cartwheels on the ice, then more power to him.

*When do I get to stop paying attention to the Leno-Conan wars? Clearly, Conan is funny and Leno is not, and so we should be on Conan's side. And I'm glad we're getting 10 p.m. scripted shows back, obviously. I was feeling detective/lawyer/doctor-deficient for a little while there. But one of these guys is worth several hundred million dollars and the other one is merely worth tens of millions. I'm going to have to be paid more to care.

*Will one of you nerds let me know if it's even worth my time watching Caprica if I never saw more than 30 minutes of Battlestar Galactica? Like do I just need to Netflix that whole other series first? My DVR only has so many hours of space left. So this is a logistical query.

* What if Pat Robertson dies soon? It could happen. He's pretty much entered the phase of life where you think that robots are going to break into your house to steal your medicine. And in case you missed his latest outburst on The 700 Club (funniest show on TV, in case you've never seen it), he said that God sent the devastating earthquake to Haiti because they'd made some kind of pact with Satan. Pat is the perfect combination of gross, mean conservative evangelical and loony old man and smiling creepiness and Werther's Originals. I have a soft spot for wacky old coots and I was half-hoping I'd grow old with him always on my TV. But I realize this can never be and I'm trying not to think about it too much.

* Finally, when will you start reading my recaps of American Idol and Project Runway over on I think your answer should be "Why, right NOW, Dave!

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Dave White