They’ve only had ninety minutes of airtime, but the cast of Real World: Austin continues to dazzle with their potent brew of stupidity and horniness. This week, we learned the vicious truths about the fighting culture as Danny suffered in the aftermath of his highly painful skull fracture. The Boston native embarked on a highly spiritual and thoughtful journey as he examined whether or not a life of violence was worth… oh, who the hell am I kidding? This is The Real World! We don’t care about introspective consequences! It’s all about sex and booze! So that’s why we spent nearly the whole half hour pondering whether or not Danny’s injury would lead to a little fractured-skull lovin’ — because nothing’s as romantic as a broken eye socket.The show began with Danny in all his bandaged glory wondering whether or not to press charges against his assailant. He claimed he wanted to find the guy “for safety reasons.” That’s pretty cool. Hey, I have another reason why you should find the guy: HE BROKE YOUR SKULL. Anyway, Dr. Shepler (or as they say in Long Island, Doctah Sheplah) told Danny that he couldn’t operate until his swelling went down, which meant we’d see the poor kid moping around the house with an ice pack on his eye for the rest of the episode. Oh, Dr. Shep, one last question. After the operation, how long until Danny is back to normal? Six months? A year? Nope. How about a week. Yes, that’s right. After all of Dr. Shepler’s hellfire and brimstone last week (you could get an infection! You could go blind! You could DESTROY THE HUMAN RACE!!!!), turns out this entire injury could be fixed and forgotten in about a week. Well, that’s disappointing. I mean, for us — not Danny. So much for this being the Season of the Skull. I guess I’ll just take down that poster I spent FOUR HOURS ON.
Okay, I didn’t make a poster, but nevertheless, I was pretty shocked that Danny would be A-OK so quickly. Unfortunately, he was in such pain now that even his short recovery period couldn’t raise his spirits (only MelindaSex™ can do that, but I’m getting ahead of myself). Anyway, plucky Rachel had just the bestest idea in the whole wide world! “I think tonight we should like go to the Hard Rock Café or something that has milkshakes, and we can all sit down and get a milkshake together!” Oh, LET’S! Then we can hold hands and sing songs and maybe, just maybe, we can get our skulls all bashed in so we can all go through it together! Yay! By the way, note to Rachel: I know you’re new to town, but I guarantee there are better, easier, and less expensive places to get milkshakes than the Hard Rock.
Well, the allure of milkshakes and rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia wasn’t as strong for Danny as it was for Rachel. Besides, he had other pressing issues. His medical state, you say? No. Melinda! Apparently Danny had been shying away from the self-anointed nymph “because he feels ugly, and when he feels ugly, he doesn’t feel like he deserves her,” explained the lactose-deprived Rachel. We then cut to Danny screaming, “Don’t look at me! I’M HIDEOUS!!!!” He then climbed atop Nôtre Dame and rang the bells for hours and hours.
If you thought this episode was going to be about Danny though, you’d be wrong. Way wrong. You see, Danny + skull fracture = not drunk. And not drunk = get off MTV. Yes, this was actually Melinda’s show, and sadly, after about two minutes with Danny, we returned to the blonde beauty as she babbled on the phone with her boyfriend, Jason. Sigh. Second episode, and we were already getting the first Hometown Honey scene. Great. Luckily, the conversation lasted about five seconds, but as any Bunim/Murray aficionado knows, this was just the calm before the storm.
Nevertheless, there were bigger and better things to focus on; specifically, the grand introduction of this season’s mystery job. A package at the door instructed the kiddos to be ready the next morning at 9:40 AM. Wear your bathing suits and team colors. Oh, sorry, random Inferno II impulse. What I meant to say was that a cab would be coming for the roommates the next morning, and as everyone tried to predict their fates, Lacey fretted that she’d be stuck in a stereotypical Texas job. Oh please, let her fears come true! Make them rodeo clowns! No, better yet: oil tycoons! Now that would be fun times.
Anyway, that night the whole crew decided to head out, but poor Danny knew he’d have to lay low at home. Awww. Poor guy. Luckily he wouldn’t be alone (cue sexy saxophone music). “I’m gonna stay with him and try to show him a good time,” said Melinda with hooker-ish glee. That’s right folks: they were gonna play Pictionary. What? She said she was going to show him a good time. Pictionary is a good time! Okay, fine. They were gonna make out. Sure enough, with the last roommate out of the house, talk immediately turned to sex. Melinda complained that she didn’t know what to do with herself — she hadn’t had sex in soooo long. Yeah, the last time Melinda had sex, it was like, I don’t know, another era. Like almost five days ago. That’s nearly a work week! Somebody get her some penis, STAT!
Oh wait, there’s Danny. Yes, the two began to canoodle, and just in case we weren’t sure just how sexually charged this moment was, the producers cut back and forth between the hidden cam footage and Nehemiah doing some marble-mouthed freestyle. I guess his floetry was supposed to indicate some kind of mounting passion. You know how it goes. Bunim/Murray visits the South By Southwest Film Festival and comes back all artsy. Whatever. Let’s focus on what really matters: when’s that hidden bedroom cam gonna turn infrared?
Unfortunately, despite the footage getting grainier and grainier, the prelude to a hump was rudely interrupted by Nehemiah, who served as this season’s first true cockblock. Wait, I thought he was at the bar doing freestyle. Oh never mind. Let’s just move on.
The next morning, it was finally time for the roommates to discover their job. Johanna crossed her fingers that she’d somehow get to act or sing or dance as she noted, “I like performing.” She also added, “I also like drinking, lying, fighting, and drinking again. Oh, and helping kids.”
Well, the group was taken to what appeared to be an abandoned lumber yard, but wait! A giant door opened, revealing a sickly man sitting atop a crane. This was Jason Pierson of the Austin Film Society, and as he lowered down to his flock, he kind of resembled the earthier, Kenny Loggins version of Patrick Stewart in X-Men. Anyway, Mr. Pierson quickly rattled off his credits, which included working with Spike Lee (dick — sorry, personal experiences) and Michael Moore — a director who Rachel HATES. Just about the only thing worse for Rachel is ordering a milkshake and getting chocolate milk. Oh, that smarts.
Anyway, Jason Pierson announced that the group would be producing a fifteen minute documentary about the South by Southwest Film and Music Festival. Not sure what this amateur doc will be named, but I’m putting money on “Shakey Cam Goes to Austin!” Luckily, Nehemiah has a Media Arts degree which gave the roommates instant comfort. Of course, this will probably give way to bitterness and resentment as the group will most likely question Nehemiah’s skills and authority at some point or another. Fantastic.
Nevertheless, Jason then told the roommates to visit the University of Texas where they’d be meeting another advisor, Professor Paul Steckler. “You’ll get to know him. You’ll call him ‘Steck,’” he said, adding, “You’ll take walks with him, catch dinner by the shore, laugh about Proust. Your fingers will intermingle, losing themselves in a world of sensuality and flesh. He will become more than just Steck. He will become… home.”
Okay, maybe Pierson didn’t say that last part, but he had high regards for this mysterious “Steck” guy (who hopefully was no relation to Hawaii‘s Teck.) Before we could meet him, though, we had to go back home so that Melinda could waste away precious airtime babbling to her boyfriend. We knew things would get real rocky real fast when Jason tersely asked, “Who is this?” Ha! He’s a dick! He just pretended like he didn’t recognize his own girlfriend! That’s some clunky passive aggression, my friend. Gotta work on the delivery. Let’s start simple. Next time Melinda calls, simply say “Oh. It’s you.” Of course, if Jason were British, he could also add, “I’m sorry, but I’m serving tea now. As I always do at this time.” Unfortunately, Jason didn’t say any of this. Instead, he told Melinda that he was writing her off, and then the two blabbed on and on about who knows what. Seriously, we really don’t care. Afterwards, Mel retreated to the kitchen where Nehemiah and Lacey consoled her and HOLY SHIT! Lacey has the whitest hand I’ve ever seen. It’s like she put on a latex glove and dunked it in a vat of marshmallow sauce.
Behold my irradiant touch!
Anyway, while Lacey stroked Melinda’s back with her alabaster hand, Nehemiah reminded the heartbroken girl that Jason wasn’t worth the effort, especially when there was already a guy who cares for her so much. Yup, he was talking about Danny — a.k.a. the dude they all just met about four days ago. And just in case we weren’t sure how true Danny’s insta-love of Melinda was, he swooped in and gave her a big hug. He also carried a big blanket around his shoulders as he huddled for warmth. Apparently he contracted a case of malaria in Austin too. Later, Melinda talked Danny’s ear off about Jason, saying how screwed up their relationship was. Danny provided some perfunctory advice, and when Melinda was satisfied that she’d made this drama enough of everyone’s business, she leaned over and kissed Danny on the head. Hey hey! Watch the skull, bitch!
The next day, everyone headed over to U.T. (University of Texas, not Utah) and met the famous Paul Steckler. Okay, first of all, this guy didn’t have a cool crane. Second of all, he kind of looked like the lovechild of Art Garfunkel and… uh… Michael Dukakis? No. Anderson Cooper? No…I’ll work on this one. Anyway, Steck introduced us to two of his students who would be helping the roommates. One was P.J., a ready-for-MTV Asian guy with trendy hair. The other was Jenn, the lesbian offspring of Richard from Beauty and the Geek. Needless to say, she was H-O-T (licking finger and letting it sizzle in the air).
Oh wait, I got it. If Art Garfunkel and Steck’s assistant had a lovechild, it would be Steck.
Dim bulb Johanna was immediately impressed with Steck and his Stecklettes. “He seems to have a lot of experience working with documentaries,” she said. Uh, well, he is a professor. Hence, the knowledge.
Steck explained the South By Southwest Festival to the group, noting how big acts are often booked to draw people in. “The access to famous bands: probably don’t get very much,” warned Steck. Yeah. They probably won’t get anywhere near the big names. It’s not like they have MTV cameras trailing them around. Oh wait…
But enough about Steck. Let’s go back to that storyline that no one cares about: Melinda and Jason. Back at the mansion, the cameras flashed what seemed to be a block of solid text on the screen. Melinda explained: “I got another email from Jason, and he’s saying” THAT HE DOESN’T KNOW HOW TO USE PARAGRAPHS! Seriously, let’s use a carriage return here and there.
Anyway, Melinda explained to us that Jason had broken up with her twice to be with other girls (idiot), but now that she was on The Real World, she felt Empowered! Jason wasn’t going to trample all over her anymore. Plus, things were different “now that I have somebody kind of in my life like Danny…” Again, five days. You’ve known him five days.
Well, the good part of all this was that Melinda finally had the balls to tell Jason that she was over him, which should work out well, right? After all, he had just said to her “I’m writing you off.” Well, in typical stupid Hometown Honey fashion, Jason whined, “I don’t understand why you can’t give me one more shot.” Uh…you just dumped her like two days ago. Whatever. Things were different now, reiterated Melinda, who by now was tearing all over her neck. Nice NECK CRY, jerk.
Anyway, the end product of all these shenanigans was that at long last Melinda and Danny could finally have sex. And isn’t that what this is all about? Dirty, sloppy, broken-skull sex? Kind of puts a new spin on skull f*cking.
What do you think? Will these people be able to produce a decent documentary without stopping every five minutes for a quickie?