‘The A-List’ Recap: Reality TV Editing 101

Derek volunteers for the elderly

We’re finally introduced to Derek’s latest love interest over dinner at Colicchio & Sons, (which is apparently cool enough to be filmed accurately both inside and out), but the sight isn’t pretty. At first, I was hoping Derek was getting a pre-date pep talk from his dad or grandfather or maybe even Methusaleh. But this old dude is actually Derek’s potential boyfriend, and he’s no stranger to reality TV. British filmmaker turned sex addict Duncan Roy appeared on a 2009 episode of VH1’s Sex Rehab With Dr. Drew – quite possibly one of the only shows that’s more painful to watch than this one. And as if there were any doubt that it’s really him, Duncan’s psychotic rant about the evening appears on his very own Geocities-ish website www.duncanroy.com. My more impartial perspective on the date goes a little something like this:


Duncan marks his two-month old relationship with Derek by giving him a used Cartier Tank and nixing his Manhunt, Grindr, and Gaydar accounts – pretty serious stuff in gay boy world. But after some small talk including recent developments in Derek’s tanning empire (which Duncan questions the sustainability of given how much time Derek will need to devote to cooking and cleaning for him), the date drops off a cliff. Despite his generous re-gifting and willingness to forgo online fucking, it turns out Duncan prefers the label “friends with benefits” over “boyfriend”. Some sad attempts at jokes that involve snot and vomit (perhaps part of that whole dry, British humor thing) don’t help the situation, and plans to bring this relative geriatric to post-dinner drinks with the gang are foiled.

Nevertheless, in a sick twist of fate, we learn that these two bumped into each other later in the evening anyway (a surprisingly common occurrence in gay New York nightlife), and Duncan manages to hit it off with the remnants of the group including Austin and Jake, who shares his British background and occasionally unintelligible accent. The geezer manages to score an invitation to Austin’s shindig and shows up sporting some avant-garde sweater contraption (the straight equivalent of seeing your dad decked in Abercrombie) forcing his biggest supporter and best friend Derek to bail on the bash altogether.


Reichen works out his dating addiction

A completely producer-staged workout session for Reichen and Mike proves to be the only way Mike can be worked into this episode. And though his stay is brief, his advice is biting: after years of serial relationships, he tells Reichen to go on a six-month moratorium from dating. And in other fabricated scenarios, Reichen invites TJ to tag along with him to Hawaii where he has been asked to “host something”. TJ is charged with the task of blogging about the experience, which we know he’s totally awesome at since failing to post promotional blurbs about on Facebook and Twitter is the reason he lost his job at Ryan’s salon, and ultimately, why he’s free to go to Hawaii in the first place.

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