“I thought, ‘Why does he have to do that?’ I mean, it seemed like he was living a fine life. Everyone who knew him knew he was gay.” Dame Joan Collins discusses UK personality Phillip Schofield coming out at 57 years old during a recap of the Oscars on “Good Morning Britain.” She added, “We take it for granted today that people are gay, or lesbian, or trans or whatever.” When she got to that last part, she gestured to fellow panelist, Perez Hilton.
In news that will surprise nobody, this year’s Oscars telecast brought in the lowest TV ratings in history. That’s the bad news. The good news is that it was the most watched television special since last year’s Oscars.
Yes, the Academy Awards still beat out the Grammy Awards and Golden Globes. What does that mean? That nobody is watching any of these award shows. There are too many options and the audience is too fragmented. I suppose they could boost the ratings somehow. Maybe they could introduce an audience vote. Or a swimsuit competition.
During a discussion of women celebrating Galentine’s Day instead of Valentine’s Day, Wendy Williams found herself in hot water.
“Well, first of all, if you’re a man and you’re clapping, you’re not even a part of this. You don’t even understand the rules of the day. It’s women going out and getting saucy and then going back home. You’re not a part.” Fine. Then she added, “I don’t care if you’re gay. You don’t get a mensie every 28 days. You can do a lot that we do, but I get offended by the idea that we go through something you will never go through.”
And here comes that extra step. “And stop wearing our skirts and our heels. Just sayin’. Girls, what do we have for ourselves?” Suddenly people began accusing Wendy of being homo- or transphobic (a few supporters felt she was defending the “appropriation of womanhood”). The next day, Wendy made a video in which she apologized and expressed love for her LGBTQ fans. She didn’t mention Billy Porter by name — who, speaking of the Oscars, looked (and sounded!) fabulous as usual — but as tinseltown’s most famous gender-bender, it’s a safe bet he inspired the rant.
Some sources are claiming that the next “Spider-man” film will include a boyfriend for the superhero! I have my doubts this will happen, but here’s how the rumor got started. Way back in 2013, Andrew Garfield said the following: “What if (Spider-man’s girlfriend) is a dude? Why can’t we discover that Peter is exploring his sexuality? It’s hardly even groundbreaking! So why can’t he be gay? Why can’t he be into boys?” Andrew brought this idea up to the producers and they balked. However, the current rumor claims that Sony is so eager for Garfield to return to the franchise, they’d now consider a bi-Spidey. We’ll see.
A clip recently dropped of Robert Pattinson as Batman. Well, they say it’s Robert Pattinson as Batman, but who really knows. Were there no lights on this set? Even a flashlight? ‘Cause, for all I know, it could be J-Lo in that Batman suit! I suppose it’s possible that Pattinson has figured out how to say, “I’m Batman” in that husky, Brenda Vaccaro type of voice. But, physically, he seems to ooze all the raw masculinity of a young Kristy McNichol.
It was a busy week celebrating your beloved Billy’s birthday. At long last, I got to see Del Shores’ latest play “This Side of Crazy,” which is playing at Los Angeles’ Zephyr Theatre until March 8. The play concerns a family of gospel performers — the matriarch, who writes songs for various acclaimed artists, and her three daughters, who were once a chart-topping trio. Tragedy splintered the family decades ago, but now there is an opportunity for a reunion. The story is slow to get moving and lots of ground is covered repeatedly. But Shores’ ability to balance a dramatic narrative with clever dialogue keeps the audience entertained and never seems forced, even in some of the longer, complicated speeches. I felt the set design worked against the story, as did some of the direction. But the cast could hardly be bettered, anchored by Sharon Garrison as the matriarch and daytime drama favorite Bobbie Eakes as the eldest daughter. Get more tickets and info at delshores.com.
The following night, I was privileged to see the great Joanna Gleason at the Renberg Theatre at the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center. The Tony winner (original Baker’s Wife from “Into the Woods”) constructed a show, “Out of the Eclipse,” which chronicles the pain of losing both parents in a four-month period (her father was Monty Hall).
Gleason has selected a diverse array of songs to tell her story and is aided beautifully by her band and backup singers. She even brings out hubby Chris Sarandon for a duet. At the end of this musical journey, Gleason realizes that, “we are on our own out here, but that does not mean that we are alone,” which sounds a lot like something she might have picked up from Mr. Sondheim, whose work was notably absent from the setlist. The show is hitting the road, so get tickets if you get the chance. The New York and L.A. dates sold out quickly.
Our “Ask Billy” question comes from Simon in London: “Will Daniel Craig really show all in his final outing as James Bond? That’s the rumor I’ve heard. And what do you hear about the film? I HATE the song.”
I recently told someone that the theme song needs to be Bassey-fied. As to the film, I know very little except that Mr. Craig will not show all. However, Craig has previously shown his naughty bits fleetingly in several films — most notably “Some Voices.” I’ve always contended that it’s unfair to judge a flaccid penis running around on the set. Perhaps it was chilly. And maybe, just maybe, it’s a grower. Decide for yourself on billymasters.com.
When 007’s penis is for your eyes only, it’s definitely time to end yet another column. Just to keep you all in the loop, I will be heading to South Beach for the National LGBTQ Task Force’s Winter Party Festival. The festivities take place March 4-10, and I’m told that discounted tickets are practically sold out. So what are you waiting for? Get over to winterparty.com. If you’ve got a question for me, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org and I promise to get back to you before Spider-man and Batman hook-up. Until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.