Full Show Index
Advertise With Us
Write For Us
Surreal Life 3, Episode 7: A Crazy Salad, Part 2by Mel Ellis -- 10/20/2004
View Printable version of this article
Hello, surreal lifers! One thing before we get started. Apparently, your humble recapper is a bit out of touch and missed the SNL reference the engineer, John Morrical, made last episode, when he said, "I'm sure the Germans will love it." RNO reader Robbie has informed me it was a running SNL joke about the Germans loving David Hasselhoff. Duly noted, and thanks, Robbie!
Before we can start with the show, you know we have to recap the goings-on of last week, or it wouldn't be reality TV. My recap of the recap: Jordy's ego expands and crushes everyone in Conway Studios; Brigitte (Gitte) and Flavor Flav (Flake) patch things up and get matching cornrows; Charo loses patience; Ryan whines. And moans. And whines some more. If you want the full version of the recap, click here.
Everyone on the same page? Good. Let's get on with it!
When we last left our beleaguered Tiffany Johnson (Ryan Starr), she had locked herself in the studio's unisex bathroom while whining about this situation being just like American Idol. I thought she meant that better talented and better spirited people bested her yet again, but she meant that she was being asked to sing something outside her comfort zone, which is, in case anyone was asleep last episode, ROCK. Only rock. Nothin' but rock.
In any event, Ryan/Tiffany is still locked in the bathroom when the show starts this week. Gitte knocks on the bathroom door. I was wondering why Gitte would bother giving any time to Ryan's childish display of temper, but she's not. She has to use the facilities, as I like to say – or "take a pee" as Gitte likes to say. Ryan won't let her in. Gitte says she needs to come in. Ryan says she doesn't want her to come in. Well, Tiff, I don't want you whining through this episode, but there seems little chance of either of us getting what we want now, isn't there? Gitte notes that her need to eliminate and Ryan's refusal to let her in the lavatory was "not helping my situation." What situation did she have? Last episode, we saw her make nice with Flake, get her hair done, and attempt to shatter my eardrums with her singing. I'd say things were peachy for Ms. Nielsen.
Before we see if Gitte busts down the bathroom door a la Red Sonja, we switch to the engineer's booth. Flake notes that it's time to get Ryan to do the vocals. Either that or, Flake threatens, he'll "drop some drums." We'll see later that it might have sounded better if he had meant that literally. VH1 takes Flake's clock appendage as its logo for the time meter on the production and lets us know there are four hours left. Flake tells us that he's getting uptight because the record really needs to be done by twelve. Hey, Flake, for my sanity, you really need to be done by the end of this episode.
Flake urges Jordy to "get the vocals done, man." Jordy reponds by hollering for Ryan. Guess no one told him she threw a hissy and was locked in the potty. Gitte knows, though. She's still outside the loo (let's see how many synonyms for toilet I can come up with!). Gitte exclaims, "Oh, my God." That gets Ryan's attention. "What?" Gitte, still poised outside the WC, screams, "I have to pee!" Ryan channels Garbo. "Just leave me alone!" Gitte, feeling full and hopeless at the same time, stands dejectedly outside the crapper. "Great." All I know is they better resolve this soon. I am almost out of synonyms.
Ryan must have heard me. She opens the washroom door a crack and Gitte bursts in. Ryan slams the door shut behind her. The ensuing conversation takes place behind the powder room door, and all we hear are voices. Gitte: "F--in' A. I almost pissed in my pants." (She's a Lady, whoa, whoa, whoa...) Ryan: "I'm so mad right now, dude." Ryan's crying and I want to feel bad, but who calls another woman "dude," and who does so in the middle of a tantrum? Gitte makes the mistake of asking what's the matter. I pause TiVo just to test my surreal skills. You try it, too. (No cheating.) My guess is that Ryan will whine that she sings rock music and feels like she's selling out. What did you come up with? Here's what Ryan said: "I sing rock music. I don't sing R&B. This is like American Idol all over again." Man, are we good or what?
Gitte is willing to cut Ryan some slack. She tells us Ryan is "a really deep (deep?) and sweet girl, but I think she needs to lighten up a bit." Whoever thought Gitte would be the voice of reason? The first snort of ginger ale up my nose occurs next, when Gitte tells Ryan she should be more like Gitte. As Chandler might say, "Can't speak! Too many jokes!" Gitte tells her to be strong, get her a-- out there, and sing the song. Amen, G. Ryan says, "okay, fine," opens the door, and flounces out. I don't think it really is fine.
Ryan and I must be linked tonight. As I write that, Ryan states that she is "not really happy about singing this song that Jordan is into and only Jordan, but I'm just doing it because of the team." Actually, it's because Gitte kicked your butt into gear and made you stop whining about it, albeit temporarily.
In any event, Ryan's prima donna moment has passed and she takes up the headphones in the studio. Jordy tells her they are going to "throw down a scratch." At first, I thought he said, "throw down a Screech," and I searched the frame in vain for Dustin Diamond. He would have been perfect, wouldn't he? Jordy yells to the engineer that they are doing a "scratch vocal," which I assume means a practice take. Jordy is more bent on venting about Ryan than in explaining what he's talking about. "Ryan's a little b----y. I think she should chill because this is just the practice vocals." The practice isn't what's bothering her, J. Didn't you watch last week's episode?
Ryan nasal-sings the song. Gitte and Flake sway from side to side on the couch, Flake's arm around Gitte. Awwwww. Jordy flails his arms around at the sound board, in an attempt, I assume, to look like he's cool and rockin' out. And, unbelievably, although Ryan is able to scratch her vocal and whine at the same time. She tells us that "every second that I spend in the booth recording it's like I'm selling out 'cause it's not rock and roll."
I would love to hear Dale Sherman weigh in on this one. As I recall, most classic, and by that I mean legendary, rock musicians were and are versatile. Clapton does blues, R&B, and rock; Billy Joel (I consider him rock) does classical and Broadway. Even The Who took a chance on a rock opera. Moreover, in all her sniveling about rock, I've never heard Ryan have one educated discussion about rock. I just don't get it. Moreover, she sounds way better on the R&B-type tune Jordy wrote than in any rock music she attempted on American Idol. (Any of you AI recappers want to weigh in, be my guest.) [Editor’s Note: No, thanks. I try to avoid remembering Ryan’s “singing.” I would like to note, however, that the way she is talking about American Idol here, you’d think somebody forced her on the show. She went there voluntarily, fercryingoutloud. Then she has the nerve to complain about it? Get over yourself! Ahem. Back to your regularly-scheduled recapper.]1 2 3 4 Next-->
View Printable version of this article