Queer Eye: Full Season
February 11, 2018 9:45 AM - Season 1 (Full Season) - Subscribe

 
I was a little leery of this reboot after I'd read a review mentioning the 'red state' slant, if this was going to end up being more of the sort of NPR/NY Times 'sympathetic profile of the misunderstood Trump voter' coverage. But I thought the new format worked pretty well.

Anyway, it made me cry a bunch (probably the most in episode 4 with AJ's coming out, and episode 6 with the guy who had inherited his grandmother's house), and laugh a little, and I hope they do more seasons.
posted by oh yeah! at 10:21 AM on February 11


Agree that the AJ episode was the absolute best, for so many reasons (the very least of them being that I could watch Antoni squirm lustily over the abrupt increase in AJ's hotness pretty much forever).

Also, it's absolutely incredible what a quality haircut can do for a dude.
posted by merriment at 11:06 AM on February 11 [3 favorites]


I watched the first couple of episodes of this because I was craving some silly escapist garbage, and it was really fun, up until the part where the cop pulls them over, but surprise, it's actually a joke, the cop is friends with the guy they're coming to make over, and everyone has a good laugh.

Maybe it's just because I live in Ontario, where we are just finding out the extent to which Toronto cops let a bunch of gay men be killed by a serial murderer, but watching a bunch of cis gay dudes make nice with a cop for funsies and talk about how cute he is, but that is extremely not cute or fun for me as a queer person.

I wish that weren't the case, because makeover shows are so fun, and I was genuinely moved by the first episode, but that's a hard no for me.
posted by ITheCosmos at 12:24 PM on February 11 [2 favorites]


Yeah, that was a deeply uncomfortable scene. It's somewhat redeemed by the conversation that Karamo & the make-over cop have later in the episode, when the cop condemns a recent & local act of police brutality, but it's sad that the bar is set so low that the act of saying 'police brutality is a bad thing' should be heartening. I think if you noped-out immediately after the pulling-over scene, you might want to try to get through the rest of the episode, because they don't just laugh the whole thing off as a joke and not address it again. (Also addressed in the Vulture interview with the Fab Five in a little more depth.)

I think a lot of that "look at how cute you are" joking with the cop who pulled them over was kind of driven by manic adrenalin-rush relief at realizing they were out of danger, not just frivolity. I think it was deeply manipulative of the producers to put the Fab 5 in that position, but, I don't think they were doing it for the laughs. Not sure if that makes it better or worse.
posted by oh yeah! at 1:13 PM on February 11 [4 favorites]


Thanks for mentioning that and for the link, I'll give it another chance.
posted by ITheCosmos at 1:18 PM on February 11


I binged this whole season yesterday and absolutely loved it. I never watched the original but I was moved at how much effort seemed to be put into making a 'real' connection with the person getting a make-over. I love that the focus on the clothes and grooming in many ways was an after thought, and they didn't try to completely reinvent the person but rather bring out the person that was inside.

The AJ episode was standout for me, I sobbed pretty hard at the end.

I also felt weird at that fake-out cop scene, but I did feel like it redeemed itself somewhat later through the episode.
posted by liquorice at 2:26 PM on February 11


I have a lot of weightier, but less articulate thoughts about the tremendous amount of emotional investment the fab 5 are making in their subjects, cheerleading their self-actualization and etc... and how worthy or not I personally feel they are of it. but that's irrelevant now. what really bothers me about the show is the weirdass face recognition blurring effect they use that leads to things like paintings and other background art items to be pointlessly obscured. Is this just carelessness? or is there some rights/reproduction management CYA reason for it?
posted by Cold Lurkey at 2:50 PM on February 11


I just thought that was like a copyright issue thing.
posted by liquorice at 3:39 PM on February 11 [2 favorites]


Jonathan Van Ness is the most charming person on the planet period. Now excuse me, I need to go have a sandal moment.
posted by moons in june at 5:57 PM on February 11 [1 favorite]


Yeah I was disappointed by the both-sides-ism even in the later scene, but from the show and interviews, Karamo seemed to feel it was a genuinely impactful conversation so I'm hoping that was just a case of unfortunate editing. I'm glad it got at least the airtime it did & didn't get completely brushed under the rug (that guy's MAGA hat, though...)

It's become such a trope, this pull-someone-over-to-surprise-them thing - I've seen examples online of people using it for proposals and all kinds of junk. I wish the police officers involved in these schemes would see the fear in the other person's eyes as a reason to stop and just tell them why they're actually there, but I guess they're so used to seeing that reaction they probably don't even notice.
posted by mosst at 7:27 AM on February 12


I think this new iteration is superior for a few reasons, although let me start by saying that I don't think the fab five this season have precisely the chops of the originals, specifically Ted Allen's culinary skills or Thom Filicia's interior design skills.

That being said, this seems to represent a shift of focus. The original series started from the premise that straight men are sort of hopeless about these things and gay men are sort of great at these things, which is not only a stereotype but unfair to the hard-won skills of the cast members.

This season is less about "gay men show you how its done" and more about "a lot of men stall somewhere in their life, sometimes due to complicated circumstances, and could use some professional advice." We see this both with the Christian dude, who is so overworked that he doesn't have any time for himself, and with AJ, who is wrestling with fears that being publicly gay will alienate his stepmother.

The life upgrades offered here are generally pretty simple — Christian dude's all came from Target — and achievable, responding both to their tastes and their needs.

But, like everyone else, I was really struck by the fact that the show takes seriously a very difficult mission, to forge a connection between the fab five and the people they help. This season, more than any previous season, really feels less like a makeover show and more like an attempt to look at, and provide some tools for resolving, a lot of profoundly painful life crises, including a lot of toxic masculinity.

It sometimes feels forced or rushed, which is probably the limitations of the show. I got the sense, at the end of the Christian dude's episode, that while he was raised in an Evangelical, right-wing church, his wife's church, where he now belongs, is comparatively liberal, and he agrees with them. That his goal in being on the show, aside from getting their advice, was to demonstrate that Christians aren't necessarily homophobes. That felt compressed, but I think was a nice gesture.
posted by maxsparber at 9:41 AM on February 12 [10 favorites]


up until the part where the cop pulls them over, but surprise, it's actually a joke

I assumed that was a reality show setup — not just the cop, who was obviously in on it, but that the Fab Five knew all along — because seriously, who drives without their license on them, even if it's for a TV show? Or perhaps I should say especially as part of a TV show, as the producers would want to be sure that anyone driving was doing so legally, for fear of liability.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:09 AM on February 12


I hadn’t seen the original, but I binge watched this one, and now I want to Queer Eye my own life. (A few friends and I were talking about it and we briefly considered setting up a group where we Queer Eye each other.)

The AJ episode was the first one I watched and it made me cry so hard. I would totally watch a season that’s focused on helping other queermos embrace themselves. (Though come on Tan, Not all of us care about looking “slimmer”).
posted by divabat at 4:43 PM on February 12 [1 favorite]


>>up until the part where the cop pulls them over, but surprise, it's actually a joke

>>I assumed that was a reality show setup — not just the cop, who was obviously in on it, but that the Fab Five knew all along


According to the Vulture interview, they didn't:

In the beginning of that episode, another police officer, Corey’s friend, pulls all of you over in the car, and before he reveals it’s a joke, it’s very uncomfortable to watch.
Bobby: Which was real.


Tan: It was. None of us knew what was happening, and honestly, I freaked my shit out.

Bobby: And that was only our second week filming, so we’re like, what’s going on? So it really was real. That’s an amazing thing about the show I’d never expected.

Karamo: That’s a fun moment that’s going to give a lot of people a glimpse into the life of what many people don’t experience. What I think, the beauty with Netflix keeping that scene in, which I’m so thankful they did, is because a lot of people have never seen what it is for people who are marginalized, to see what they feel like when they get stopped.

People now, they’re going to get a small glimpse of that, but then they’re going to get to see us grow out of that, which is phenomenal. Now, if they see that on the news, they can say, “Oh, I kind of remember what they were feeling like. I understand now why Jonathan took out a camera and started recording. I can see now why Tan and Karamo were uncomfortable.”
posted by bunderful at 4:56 PM on February 12 [3 favorites]


I watched the whole show this weekend - it was so much more than I expected, and I loved it. I don't think the words "toxic masculinity" are explicitly used on the show which in retrospect surprises me, because so much of it is like, it's okay to take care of yourself, it's okay to show your feelings, it's good to show people you care about them.

That Christian guy getting - 2 hours? - of sleep a night ... I kind of felt like they should have brought in a career consultant to help him find a job that paid well enough that he could reduce his hours. Though of course that's not within the scope of the show.

Overall I just loved their ability to see what was amazing and fantastic about someone. From Tom's makeover in the first episode I knew this was a different kind of show. They work with him where he is and they're able to see his goodheartedness and handsomeness. It made me want to work harder to see the beauty and goodness in myself and those around me.
posted by bunderful at 5:05 PM on February 12 [1 favorite]


On a shallow note, how about that firefighter Superman? Yowsa.
posted by oh yeah! at 6:36 PM on February 12 [2 favorites]


I was uncomfortable with how intrusively touchy and objectifying Karamo was toward that firefighter. Sure, he’s attractive, but it’s alienating for anyone to have that aspect of yourself constantly commented upon.
posted by LooseFilter at 10:39 PM on February 12 [3 favorites]


OMG YES. And Neal being so expressively uncomfortable but they played it off as a joke! Really poor modelling of consent and boundaries there.
posted by divabat at 4:43 AM on February 13


Neal replied to my tweet:
Fear not. It was what I wanted and signed up for. I needed a sock to my system. And it all came from a place of Love and help from the guys. Everything was consented.
posted by divabat at 1:21 PM on February 13 [8 favorites]


I think I'm crushing on Antoni, though the more I watch the more convinced I am that I've seen him in something before but can't think of it. I checked his IMDB filmography and nothing rings a bell. Maybe it's just how much he reminds me of Jonathan Groff.
posted by dnash at 1:34 PM on February 13


My favorite is Antoni cause I can tell another tightly wound overplanner from across the room.

Like I’m pretty sure he’s had to keep quiet about a yacht murder and I love him for it.
posted by The Whelk at 8:03 PM on February 13 [10 favorites]


This is delightful and maxsparber nails exactly why:
The original series started from the premise that straight men are sort of hopeless about these things and gay men are sort of great at these things, which is not only a stereotype but unfair to the hard-won skills of the cast members.

This season is less about "gay men show you how its done" and more about "a lot of men stall somewhere in their life, sometimes due to complicated circumstances, and could use some professional advice."
I do think there's a fair bit of unpacking of toxic masculinity, which is handled gracefully. It gets put in terms of "Some gay men may get to [moisturizing/smart fashion/thoughtful cooking/snappy decor] a little faster than you did, but it's 2018 and it doesn't make you less of a man to want to try that yourself, it just means you're trying to be a better man."

I am not surprised the conversation with cop got some talk here, but I'd also like to highlight the "Are you the husband or the wife?" exchange and the immediate, but still kind-hearted callout that nonsense got. They are gently trying to get some Georgia men woke here and it's fun to see.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:00 AM on February 15 [6 favorites]


Apparently halfway through the series a bunch of my friends decided Antoni was a Hannibal style serial killer and decided to watch the entire show as if that was the case.
posted by The Whelk at 7:27 PM on February 16 [5 favorites]


Man, the Christian guy. I feel like he would have been more helped by just getting a solid week-long nap.
posted by juliapangolin at 8:49 PM on February 16 [3 favorites]


what really bothers me about the show is the weirdass face recognition blurring effect they use that leads to things like paintings and other background art items to be pointlessly obscured.

Not pointlessly. There's copyright issues and it's easier to blur random copyrighted images than seek permission to include them in a broadcast. A Catfish episode once explained that they bring their own framed pictures to hang on the wall when doing their motel-room reports for copyright reasons.
posted by Thella at 5:36 PM on February 17


Oh, and I am loving this show. I wish someone would produce a Femme Eye for the Girl Bi, cos I could rock that as a contestant.
posted by Thella at 5:38 PM on February 17 [1 favorite]


Did anyone else notice that in the episode with the comedian, there was no part of the show where Antoni worked on him with food?

I'm going to make an unfair guess and say that maybe Joe losing 110 pounds in a year isn't entirely that he's been going to the gym. I notice that he absolutely did not talk about fitness as a big part of his life. And if it was, Antoni certainly would have worked with him on food options to continue his health improvements. So that's interesting.

I further notice that his body type is remarkably like what many of the folks have on my bariatric surgery support group message board and really, isn't that different than mine. (I just lost a similarly huge amount of weight after gastric sleeve surgery.)

I mean, in the end, it's his business. And if he didn't want to expose that part of his life on a reality show, I get that. But given the last year I just had, I couldn't help but wonder.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 8:03 AM on February 19


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