“A-List: New York” Episode 204 Recap: Trouble in Paradise

There’s a rather large elephant in the room and this time, I’m not talking about anybody’s peen. What exactly are we watching here? Is this a heavily manipulated reality show or a completely scripted hoax?

Duncan Roy’s tell-all blog, where he outs his date with Derek on last week’s show as being fake and works to channel himself into some pretentious mountain-dwelling gas-bagish approximation of Henry David Thoreau, throws all of that into question.

Reading it flooded me with questions. Who are we? Is there a God? Why does Mad Men keep winning Emmys? I mean sure, it’s good and all. But there are tons of better shows. Why do they get to hog the spotlight year after …

Sorry. What was I saying? Oh yeah.

I’ve deployed a highly sophisticated technique when it comes to writing these recaps. I sit down, watch the show, and jot down a few notes about what’s going on. And when it’s over, I retch once or twice and then write this bad boy up. Like I said; pretty sophisticated.

Unless it’s a glaringly obvious set-up, I try to remain in the “reality” of what I’ve been presented. But now I’m left with a quandary: do I continue to treat the show as (cough, cough) “real” or do I throw up my hands and scream, “FAKEY McFAKERSON!” all the time?

Well, since no one is taking this show that seriously, I might as well continue to have fun with it. It might be as fake as most of Cher’s body parts but darn it, I will soldier on. And I’m just going to start with…

T.J. AND REICHEN’S ROAD TO HAWAII (which I realize doesn’t make sense because there is no actual road to Hawaii).


The boys land in the Aloha State and are promptly lei’ed which, of course, leads to T.J. stating, “I just got here and I’m already getting laid.”

I’m quite certain that every Hawaiian wants to go all Hostel on every tourist that makes this moronic joke.

They get to the hotel and sit outside. Lest we forget, we’re reminded that part of Reichen’s mission in “Paradise” is to meet up with some dude he’s chatting up when he’s not… um… raising the flag all over the internet.

But the dude calls and says tells Reichen that he’s not able to make the trip after all. What happened next made me want to move my retch schedule up earlier than normal. But first, this disclaimer…

Gentle reader, I love it when men show honest and true emotion. I hate the taciturn “men don’t cry” bull many of us were force-fed as children. But to cry because some dude you hardly know can’t join you in Hawaii?

WTF, man!?! I so want to be your therapist. I could send all of Angelina Jolie’s kids to Harvard on what I’d make off of you.

T.J. does his best impersonation of Truvy from Steel Magnolias. “If you cry, I’m going to cry. And I have mascara on.” He then proceeds to climb all over Reichen until he ends up in Reichen’s embrace. Smooth, T.J… Smooth.

Later at Paradise, the event Reichen is hosting, they meet up Mike Manning from MTV’s The Real World: D.C. This is a guy that brought a ton of personality and more than a fair bit of the sexy as the show’s out bisexual cast member. In short, he’s wayyyyyy too classy for this train wreck. So what is he doing on this show?

Well he’s there to be on the receiving end of the funniest, most awkward attempt at flirting I have ever seen. After a friendly cupcake war in which Mike’s face is smeared with frosting (oh, the subtext), Reichen wipes it from his face. As he’s doing this, Reichen compliments Mike’s nice skin.

“You want to know my secret? Orange frosting. When I want to impress the boys, I just put some on.”

“Well…” Reichen says, “You’re impressing this one right now.”

Suddenly, poor Mike looks around like he’d do anything for that smoke monster from Lost to come and grab him.

“It’s the first time I’ve seen you since I’ve been single,” Reichen replies. “I guess I’m looking at you a little differently.”

“See, I don’t know how to react because I’ve always seen you as my buddy.”

Ouch. I swear this is harder to watch than that movie with Steve Guttenberg and The Village People. But it’s so damn funny!

Mike runs off and Reichen is stunned that all his smooth talk failed him. He keeps telling us that he didn’t know what he did to inspire that reaction.

You talked, my friend. You talked.

The next day, Reichen meets another guy, this one named Tristan. That night, they take a walk on the beach where they kiss and exchange numbers. Reichen tells us that he started to really feel something for this guy as they were kissing and that the feeling scared him. I swear that if Reichen’s penis isn’t getting a writing credit on this show, then something is wrong with the world.



This doesn’t take long. Rodiney goes out to dinner with Lisa, a woman we get no background on whatsoever except she doesn’t seem to mind a camera crew on her dates. FAKEY McFAKERSON!

“I hope this doesn’t bother you. I’m bisexual,” He tells her. “Does this like bother you?”

“Uhhh…” Lisa stammers. “From what I understand, it’s part of Brazilian culture to be very comfortable with…”

“We’re very sexual.” Rodiney finishes for her.

Somebody please punch me in the face.

By the time he starts asking Lisa if she’s had any bisexual leanings, Lisa looks ready to avoid anything Brazilian including waxing. This really saddens me. I know bisexuals don’t have it easy, but I hoped she’d have reacted better. Or her part was written better. Thank goodness for that Mike Manning appearance.

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