Monday, February 25, 2013
Therapy, in NYC Hell's Kitchen, spreads the love at Oscar party; so does a local grille
This year, I caught most of the Oscars (or “The Academy Awards”, as we knew the television party as kids) at the Therapy in NYC in Hell’s Kitchen, after a Japanese salmon dinner at the nearby West End Grille, and that after 2-1/2 hours of the gay innuendo of “The Book of Mormon” down on 49th St. By the way, if you want to "spread the love", see "Sister Act". The hostess at the Grille said the cast of Sister came in all the time, and she seemed to know all of NY's and LA's under 30 talent, both in classic and pop worlds (and in "Modern Family")
There is something overwhelming about filling a small disco floor (set up with tables for the Oscars), with “Skyfall”, as if this were the end of life as we knew it. You really can dance to it.
The audience cheered the most to anything from “Silver Linings Playbook”, including any instantiation of Bradley Cooper, the world’s best looking heterosexual man over 30. (Sorry, Justin Bieber, you’re too larval anyway.) You need to get the right Cooper, of course.
There were too many commercials, that were too long, but the Therapy’s own drag queen held a raffle all evening.
The final award, Best Picture, was to come from Jack Nicholson, but he turned the mike over twice to Michelle Obama, in the East Room, 2400 miles away. Michelle praised the idea of people making it regardless of obstacles, and, when the mike returned to her, announced “Argo”.
A large gay male audience was happy to see anything directed by Ben Affleck win. (Oh, no, he wasn’t going out to hurt some people.) I think there was some feeling that “Life of Pi” should win, because of the charisma of both the teen star (more mature than Bieber) and particular the all too human (at the end) tiger Richard Parker. People thought that the cat deserved an Oscar.
For Michelle to read out “Argo” recalls some irony. Remember Jimmy Carter’s failed raid into Iran in early 1980? It probably cost him the election. There had actually been a political group called “Gays for Carter” before both the 1976 and 1980 elections. Then, the best that gays hoped for was solving the problem of security clearances during Carter’s second term (which never happened). Old chestnuts take a long time to crack open, without the right crows to drop them.