February 20, 2019 at 2:20 pm PDT | by Billy Masters
Yes, Billy goes there on the Jussie Smollett case

Jussie Smollett on ‘Good Morning America.’ (Screenshot via YouTube)

“In my situation with Bryan, it was not pleasant, not at all.  And that’s about what I can say about it at this point.” – Rami Malek on his working relationship with director Bryan Singer on “Bohemian Rhapsody”.  

Pleasant or not, Singer’s direction did result in Malek getting an Oscar nomination.

Jussie, Jussie, Jussie.  I tried. Really, I did. I wanted to believe that you had been attacked – not because I wanted anyone to harm you, but because I didn’t want to think that anyone would stage such a thing.  I defended you when people I love and respect told me something about this story wasn’t quite kosher. I looked the other way when asked to believe that you went to a Subway sandwich shop at 2 a.m.  I even fought every instinct I have to yell bullshit when you said you went there to buy a salad. But, damn, this is getting harder.

More and more evidence seems to be pointing to Jussie not only lying about the attack, but perhaps manufacturing it.  “We can confirm that the information received from the individuals questioned by police earlier in the ‘Empire’ case has in fact shifted the trajectory of the investigation,” said the Chicago PD.  And who were those “individuals”?

“Nigerian” brothers Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo, are aspiring models and personal trainers.  In fact, one of them is Jussie’s personal trainer, and one or both have appeared on “Empire”!

They claim that Jussie paid them $4,000 to stage the assault, which the trio rehearsed for days.  The police found some receipts in their apartment. The MAGA hat allegedly was purchased at Uptown Beauty Supply, while the rope allegedly put around Smollett’s neck was purchased at Crafty Beaver Hardware Store – and if there’s one thing you can be sure of, never cross a crafty beaver.  

According to the brothers, Jussie paid for those items.  

In case you don’t believe they’re credible, this little tidbit might change your mind – when the police told Jussie the two were in custody, he refused to press charges against them because he knew them and felt bad for them.  

Now, I dunno about feeling bad, but I’m feeling something since I came across some exceptionally hot shirtless pics of the brothers.  

I’m now wondering what else they may have done during those long rehearsals.

If the brothers’ story ends up being true and Jussie orchestrated this whole debacle, he’s done a huge disservice to everyone who has ever been attacked; everyone who is at risk of being attacked; everyone who feels marginalized, ostracized, and politicized.  And to come out after this “attack” and do a concert in West Hollywood to rally support from people who loved and stood by him…well, it’s almost unforgivable.

But, people are innocent until proven guilty.  If all these twists and turns are wrong and Jussie was the victim…well, all I can say is, “Oops!”

You know who was really assaulted?  Our virginal “Bachelor”, Colton Underwood.

Apparently his virtue was compromised at an event supporting his own charity.  During a fundraiser for The Legacy Foundation – which raises money for cystic fibrosis – people waited in line to take photos with the hunk.  

Allegedly, someone got a bit too handsy and the former football player felt…well, I’ll let him tell you.  

“At one point during the event I was grabbed and touched inappropriately while people were throwing cameras in my face…I didn’t sign up to be a piece of meat or a zoo animal.”  I have two questions: 1) What is inappropriate after being on “The Bachelor”? and B) Isn’t part of the job description of “The Bachelor” to be a piece of meat and a zoo animal?

Last weekend is a blur, because I was on a whirlwind 48-hour trip to NYC with Jenifer Lewis, who appeared as part of Lincoln Center’s “American Songbook” series.  To call the event a triumph would be an understatement. One of the administrators congratulated Jenifer for bringing in the most diverse audience they’ve ever had.  Gays, straights, drag queens, and a rainbow of colors. I must single out the divalicious Flotilla Debarge, who helped out by running the meet-and-greet like clockwork.  And speaking of divas, the Divine Miss M was in attendance – you surely know that Jenifer was one of Bette’s most beloved Harlettes. Midler cheered on her old friend, cried at some of the touching moments, and fist-pumped Lewis’ activism.  It was all simply grand.

Since I was at Lincoln Center, I sauntered across the plaza and FINALLY saw the revival of “My Fair Lady”.  I went primarily for the luminous Laura Benanti, who is fulfilling a lifelong dream by playing Eliza Doolittle.  To say the role fit like a glove isn’t quite right – it was actually more like second skin. Obviously she can sing beautifully.  But, more than that – she acted the role to perfection. Her commitment is peerless and her ability is inestimable. Director Bartlett Sher’s vision takes a serious look at gender roles and sexual dynamics.  It makes the show more timely than ever. Truly, it’s impossible to fault anything in this luxurious production. The sets, the orchestra, the costumes, the cast – everything is simply perfection. In fact, if NBC is seriously looking for a family-friendly musical to do live, this is it – cast and all.  Having Harry Hadden-Paton opposite Benanti is a stroke of luck. Not only does he fit the traditional role of Higgins to a T, the duo’s constantly evolving dynamics work on every level. And, what can one say about Rosemary Harris – it is simply an honor to be in her presence. Benanti has extended her run through July 7th, and it would be a crime to miss this piece of magic should you be in NYC.

If you have a question, drop me a line at Billy@BillyMasters.com and I promise to get back to you before Bachelor Colton teams up with Terry Crews as spokesmen for the #MeToo movement.  

So, until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

 

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