After a few weeks of crazy Paula antics on The Real World: Key West, Svetlana finally returned to the spotlight last night in fine form. To be fair, this was actually Tyler’s episode, but Svetlana managed to steal it out right from under him when she suddenly suspected that maybe her boyfriend’s eight viewings of Brokeback Mountain might be hinting at something. True, we don’t know if her man has cozied up with Ennis Del Mar and Jack Twist, but after Tyler brought home a shower buddy that didn’t match the gay stereotype, our naive Russian princess suddenly suspected that perhaps EVERYONE WAS GAY!!!! Dunh dunh DUNH!I have to admit, I thought this episode was going to be mired in boring, tedious relationship drama after I saw Svetlana and her man, Martin, smooching during the “Previously on The Real World” segment. Surely this would be a sign of endless phone calls, crying, and arguing. As I later found out, I wasn’t necessarily wrong on this, but for a change, those calls were highly entertaining (well — the first one wasn’t. It was all about cancer ‘n stuff.)
Anyway, before we even got to the Martin matters, we found Tyler and Svetlana discussing homosexuality. Nature versus nurture and whatnot. Both agreed that it was a genetic thing, and Svetty was kind enough to break down the homosexual experience into the most basic terms: “Your penis goes up because you see a guy, and that attracts you,” she told Tyler. On the other hand, she explained, “Martin’s penis goes up because he sees me, and that attracts him.” I don’t know about you guys, but images of Tyler and Martin’s penises going up and down like pinball flippers just entered my head. And that’s not a good thing.
Tyler then decided to mix things up and talk about himself for a change (I know, shocker!). He described what it was like growing up gay, saying, “I tried at points in my life when I was coming out to not be attracted to men when I was young because it was hard.” Heh. NO PUN INTENDED. Oh, I slay me.
Still thinking about those pinball penises, aren’t you?
Well, all this was fun and informative, but there were other activities to be dabbled in. Namely, art. We soon found Tyler painting Asian symbols on a canvas, which makes sense since he clearly hails from the upper Yangtze region of China. Anyway, for those of your fearing the second coming of Melissa from New Orleans and her rudimentary painting skills, I have bad news. She’s back, and in the form of a loud, brash, gay man. I guess we always knew it would happen. Yes, Tyler had decided to indulge his creative side, and he was already his biggest fan. “I started painting,” he told his friend Kim on the phone. “I’ll be very honest. I think I’m the least artistically inclined person ever. You would be SHOCKED at my painting!” Yes, IT’S THAT GOOD! Matisse had better look out. There’s a new man on the artistic scene, and he can paint at a NINTH GRADE LEVEL!!!!
Tyler then took a break from his daily schedule of being proud of himself to complain about the gay situation on Key West. According to him, none of the gay guys on the island were under forty. What was worse was that people kept trying to introduce him to their gay friends, but as Tyler explained, “I meet the friend, and I’m like ‘Were you born pre-JFK?’” He then added, “Of course, that’s only if I can see the friend, and usually I can’t because I’m often blinded by my own radiance.”
Elsewhere in the mansion, Svetlana talked on the phone with Martin, whose dad we later learned had been diagnosed with lung cancer and was suffering from a dangerous pneumonia. Svetty tried to press her boyfriend for all the juicy deets, but he grew tired of her prying ways and hung up on her. With little else to do, she marched into the kitchen and proceeded to tell Janelle and Paula all about Martin’s dad. It was a sad situation, but let me tell you, those girls could not have looked any more bored. Janelle in particular looked like she was about to pass out. Don’t these people know? She only talks when Tyler’s around!
Speaking of Tyler, he was out having dinner with a bunch of lady pals, and here’s a shocker: Janelle was nowhere to be found. That’s right. Tyler had found a new gaggle of women to gab with, and faster than you could say “FAB!” he was already gossiping about his roommates. He told the delighted women all sorts of stories and tales, like the time he caught John in the bathroom chemically straightening his hair. No, not frosting it. Bleaching it! Hilarious! (Actually, it is pretty funny). Anyway, Tyler then dominated the conversation with his typical mixture of cackling, shouting, and sweating, but eventually, this raucous get-together had to come to an end. You see, at 1:10 AM, Tyler was supposed to meet all the other roomies, and they’d all drive back to the house together in the car. The operative word there is “supposed.”
“I am so proud of my funny story!”
We then cut to Fat Tuesdays (which was seemingly besieged by a roving gang of motorized scooter drivers), and sure enough, everyone was ready to head home, but Tyler was nowhere to be found! He was delaying THE WHOLE GROUP! Controversy! Now this is the classic Real World conflict we’ve come to love, only to be topped by the age-old “Who ate my peanut butter?” dilemma. You know, if this were Svetlana causing the delay, Tyler would have had no problem verbally harassing her for days on end. Nevertheless, we then cut to Tyler walking along the streets with his friend talking about, you guessed it, himself.
“I don’t want to create in-house politics,” he said, clearly forgetting about all the in-house politics he’s created. He then yapped some more about this whole Real World experience and blah blah blah let’s go back to the others. The roomies decided that they couldn’t wait any longer, and so they hopped into their car without Tyler. Janelle was super pissed about the whole experience, but I think that had more to do with her being left out of Tyler Hagfest 2005. Paula tried to calm her down by saying “No big deal,” but she had her annoying “I’m an innocent, baby girl” voice on; so chances were that no one was paying attention to her anyway. MInutes later, with everyone in the car, poor Svetlana already started fearing that this would somehow result in Tyler yelling at her, but for once, Janelle came to her defense. She said that if Tyler yelled at Svetlana, SHE would yell back at him. Whoa! Janelle HATES being yesterday’s sidekick!
Well, here’s something I’m sure the roomies were happy to see. Upon arriving at their mansion, they found a taxi in the driveway. Yes, Tyler had already taken a cab home, which meant that everyone had been waiting around for nothing. Somehow, he managed to pin this all on everyone else, saying that everyone left without HIM, but, uh, dude, you arrived at the house way earlier. Maybe he’s been breathing too many of those paint fumes. Btw, did you see his art? It’s SPECTACULAR!
Anyway, Janelle, still on her warpath, got all snippy and asked Tyler, “I have a question. Who are these people?” And on cue, Tyler’s whole posse walked out from behind some wall as if they were a bunch of waiters announcing a birthday at Applebees. They even had a cake. A beefcake, that is. (Sorry, lame segue). Yes, ladies and gentlemen, meet Bhakti, a spry young man whose name is Sanskrit for “Hippie Parents.” It’s hard to describe this guy, but in a word, I think we can say “brilliant.” And by “brilliant,” I mean “vapid.” This guy entered The Real World domicile with a cocky smirk and a sense of accomplishment. Yeah, he was gonna get his fifteen minutes of fame, even if it meant making out with another man on national television. Maybe I shouldn’t question his motivations. Maybe he really did like Tyler. Either way, whatever romantic vibe that may have been in the air surely was dampened by John who yelled out, “Tyler brought some ass home!” Smooth. Actually, I’m shocked Paula didn’t come running out of nowhere and try to throw herself at Bhakti, all in the name of another glorious cockblock.
Well, Tyler took Bhakti on a tour of the house and even showed off his AMAZING paintings, including that one with the Asian lettering. “It’s called Red God,” Tyler said. And no, he was not kidding. Red God. How about “Pretentious Junk”? All this art stuff inspired Bhakti to wax poetic as he then observed, “Isn’t painting awesome? You can keep going over it.” So true, Bhakti! So true!
Tyler then hosted an impromptu masterclass on the exciting creative processes that percolate inside his mind. As he pointed to a pseudo Bob Ross painting, Tyler said, “I started black from the bottom, and it kind of led up to that.”
“It’s pretty chill,” Bhakti replied. Chill indeed! Somebody call MOMA! There’s a chill painting in Key West that needs to be added to the permanent collection RIGHT NOW!
You gotta admit, that’s a pretty chill painting.
While Tyler and Bhakti continued to marvel at the wonders of paint and painting over things and chill things like that, Svetlana’s brain quietly exploded in the corner. “It doesn’t register to me that this is a boy that Tyler’s bringing home because this boy doesn’t look gay at all,” she said. It’s true, Bhakti didn’t fit the gay stereotype set so flamingly well by Philadelphia’s Willie, but still, you’d think Svetlana would be able to realize that when two guys flirt, that usually means they’re gay. “Is that boy gay?” she then asked John, who laughingly told her yes. “I can’t see that stuff!” Svetlana then said. Literally. She has a Medic Alert bracelet. If she sees gay people, she breaks out in hives and dies.
Anyway, the Romance of Bhakti moved from the art gallery to the hot tub where the assortment of bubbles surely provided the fodder for many an insightful observation. I can just imagine Bhakti commenting, “Bubbles are so cool. They just rise and pop. Like life. And they’re round. And pretty.”
Tyler, meanwhile, revealed why he really was hanging out with Bhakti, and I assure you, it wasn’t for the intellectual stimulation. He explained, “Bhakti reminds me of this studly, beefy, Russian hockey player.” Uh, except without the studly, beefy, Russian hockey player body. But I think we get what you’re trying to say: you just want some booty.
As the two guys got up close and personal in the hot tub, John and Svetlana spied from up above. Yes, another Real World tradition: gawking at hookups (I act like I’m above it, but hey, I’m not turning off my TV anytime soon). Anyway, the two voyeurs quietly urged on the action, saying “C’mon, c’mon, kiss him!” Svetlana then added, “Oh my god. I can’t see this. I can’t see this. Now, excuse me while I stare and act shocked and grossed out but am really quite fascinated and aroused.”
Svetlana’s mind continued to be blown as she remarked, “He doesn’t even look gay. It’s so weird!” Well, what did she expect? Bhakti to come prancing around in a feather boa and a tiara and say things like “Girlfriend, you are HOT! Let’s go to Jamba Juice, mmkay?”
Well, Svetlana’s was in for a whole eyeful as the guys pulled their bathing suits off and got down to bidness. In one of the cheesier moves we’ve seen on The Real World, Bhakti twirled his suit over his head like a lasso and then finally draped it around Tyler’s neck, thus kicking off a session of illicit, underwater activity. Just when Middle America was about to call its local congressmen, we then cut to the bathroom, and on cue, the porno wah-wah guitar started playing. The boys walked in for a little shower action, which was represented by one man’s anonymous wrist curling in ecstasy from just behind the curtain.
Of course, it wouldn’t be scandalous shower sex without some dutiful spies nearby, and so Svetlana and Janelle lurked in the bathroom doorway, muffling their giggles and ogling the boys. But seriously, Svetlana CAN’T SEE THIS.
Later, after the guys were done with the loofa pad and whatever else, they hung out in the kitchen where Bhakti again impressed us with his philosophical outlook. “There’re no worries. We’re in Key West, man,” he said. “You only got one life to live. And you got to live it well. Rage. Go crazy, man. Do all the shit that you can do quick. ‘Cause you could die tomorrow. That’s why we’re here.” Ah, so true. The words pierce me like a Crayon!
All good things must come to an end, and sadly, our time with Bhakti was fleeting. Tyler said goodbye to his boy, and later, he told us about this thing called the “beef-o-meter” that he and his friends had come up with. He gave Bhakti a score of 8 and then noted, “It wasn’t quite a sixteen ounce piece of New York sirloin steak. More of a spiced cajun turkey ham.” Well, wouldn’t that be a score of zero? There’s no beef in a spiced cajun turkey ham. Poor analogy. Boo!
Looks like Bhakti likes his meat BOILED.
The next morning, Tyler emerged from his room, and as he walked downstairs, Jose made his big appearance of the episode. We found him sitting on a bench in the corner of the house giggling. Well done, Jose! See you next week! Anyway, Tyler spouted off his latest self-delusional comment, saying, “I do not take myself seriously whatsoever.” Riiight. Tell us about that painting of yours again? The one called RED GOD?
Well, Tyler then filled in the whole house about how he met Sir Bhakti — apparently they had made eye contact while the song “Since U Been Gone” was playing, and the rest was history. Sort of seems like an appropriate backstory. I couldn’t imagine that they had met during anything more intellectually demanding than a Kelly Clarkson song.
Later, we found Svetlana floating in the pool, looking like a little lump of Russian confusion. You see, Bhakti had totally destroyed every stereotype she’d ever had for gay people, and now she didn’t know what to believe. Even worse, she was now harboring suspicions about dearest Martin. Svetlana fretted that Bhakti “made me think that every male I know in my life is gay. Anybody I know could be gay. My dad could be gay. My uncle could be gay. Martin could be gay!” Okay, simmer down! Not EVERY man is gay. Although, this would explain why her dad, her uncle, and Martin always went off to Barbara Streisand concerts together.
Svetlana’s breasts drift apart when her gaydar goes off.
Actually, when it came to Martin, things were a bit murky. Turns out that he always slept over at this one friend’s house. A friend who’s… TOUCHY FEELY! Even worse, apparently this guy was obsessed with Martin and hated Svetlana for interceding in the relationship. Oooh. Now this was getting juicy. Well, Svetlana worked herself into a nervous, paranoid tizzy; so, she called up Martin and basically asked him if he was gay. After all, Bhakti sort of looked like him. And if you look like a gay person, chances are you actually are gay.
Well, I’m sure Martin really appreciated Svetlana’s questioning AS HIS DAD WAS DYING. Chances are he probably didn’t need his girlfriend trying to out him on national television. He tried to explain the reason why he always stayed over at his friend’s house. According to him, sometimes at night he didn’t feel like driving all the way home, and so he’d stay over at his friend’s house, which happened to have a “huger” basement and stuff. All they’d do was chill on the couch. That’s it. You know, Martin, “chilling on the couch” and having “gay sex” aren’t mutually exclusive.
Anyway, Martin finally became so fed up that he told Svetlana that if she thought he was gay, she should just dump him and start dating someone else. Svetlana then hung up the phone, probably causing Martin to sigh, “YES!” He then jumped into the arms of his man-lover and kissed him for hours. Okay, that didn’t happen. Or at least, not that we know of…
Zach, meanwhile, echoed what we all were probably thinking: that what Svetlana just did was rude and insensitive and selfish in the context of Martin’s father dying. He tried to explain this to her, but she didn’t seem to get it. Eventually, Tyler joked, “Tell Martin I masturbated thinking of him.” I can just imagine Martin saying back, “Yeah, me too. Oh, you were joking? Um… yeah, I was joking too. I joke a lot. Two times a day usually.”
The show finally came to a close with Tyler talking to Paula (who was using her deep voice at the moment) about one night stands. He noted, “What’s so funny is that I’m so judgmental of other people, but I’m also judgmental about myself.” You’re right, Tyler. That IS so funny! Now, let’s talk about you some more!
Sadly, the Tivo cut off right then and there, but that’s okay. I think we’d gotten the gist of the episode. What do you think? Will we be seeing more of Bhakti? And is Martin gay?