The Hills & The City: What Happens in LA, Stays in Vegas

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The Hills

Vegas, maybe. Vegas.

You know what's something funny that I realized last night? The Hills is fake! Yeah, like totally fake! You know how I know? Because at the end of last week's episode and the beginning of this one, Kristin and Stacie the Bartender tried to act like their trip to Las Vegas was all spontaneous and in the moment. And yet, when I had interviewed Kristin on the phone a while ago, she knew already. She told me the crew was off to Las Vegas the next day and blabbity blah blah. So it was a plan! Not something sudden and spur of the moment. Unless she was talking about a different trip to Las Vegas, meaning there are two Las Vegas trips in one "season" or over the course of two short "seasons" or whatever the shit they're calling these cycles of episodes. And whatever the case—fake spontaneous Las Vegas trips, or two separate Las Vegas trips—both are reasons to never watch this show again.

And yet we do watch, every week, and we will do so until we are old and dead and gray and look like the guy at the end of Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade who chose poorly. Oh well. Nothing to be done about that. So let's talk about this latest meeting of the Mid-Afternoon Society, a miserable kaffeeklatsch of dull thinkers who love to talk about boys and the boys who are boys when they're boys. Boys. Let's go to Boy Vegas! I mean Las Boys! I mean Boys. The desert full of alcohol and boys. Kriki and Stacie the Bartender blasted across the alkali flats in a jet-powered monkey-navigated rocket car, talking about how they were going to meet boys and it was going to be so awesome and sexy and good times. Kriki nodded her head and said "Yeahhhhhh", but she didn't really mean it.

What "Yeahhhhhh" really meant was "Noooo...", because she is still in love with her producers and does whatever they tell her to do. In this case they've told her to metronome her eyes like a cat clock back and forth between the irrepressible bon vivant and social dynamo Justin Bobby and the demure intellectual Brody Jenner. Oh which boy does she wannnnnt??? Well, it turns out it's Justin Bobby, mostly because Brody is still tied up with the nefarious naked koala bear that is Jayde. While out on the town at Ghost Bar, Stacie the Bartender and Kreeks got their own sad little bottle service (bottle service ALWAYS looks said. I mean, who wants big jugs of juice sitting at their bar table? What is this, breakfast?) and waited for new, fascinating Las Vegas boys to come up and talk to them. K and S were soon disabused of the idea that there is anyone interesting in Las Vegas when two royal asshats—I think they were actually delegates from the Kingdom of Las Vegas, perhaps Prince Asshat and his loyal court jester, Assclown—sauntered up and started making chatty-chatty with these two girls who were filming a reality show. One of them made a Backstreet Boys joke, which was horribly sad, and then the other sort of copped to being a dancer, maybe? I couldn't really tell. Alls I do know is that the above thing happened. Prince Asshat did a jokey "sexy dance" that was supposed to be irreverent and hysterical like some kee-razy dude in an SNL skit, but it was also vaguely supposed to be sexy because he was moving his butt a lot and look how confident he was, not afraid to look silly.

Unfortunately the thing was irredeemably silly, and nowhere near funny or sexy. Kid just totally whiffed it with Kristin Cavallari, and now his friends have that tape forever to lord over him and belittle him whenever they fancy. For her part, Stacie the Bartender seemed enthralled by the Asses Clown and Hat, but no one cares about Stacie the Bartender, so it really didn't matter at all. Bored with booty dancing, Kinkers went outside on the linai and called a mysterious boy. The Palms sign glowed neon green in the glass reflection and suddenly I felt them—the ghosts of Steven and Brynne and Frank, of Trishelle and Irulan. All those old MTV Las Vegas spirits, shimmering there in the window for a moment. How sad life felt then, for a second, when I watched this. How time goes fleeting by. That was seven years ago, that season of The Real World. I was a bubbly-eyed sophomore in college when it aired. And now a decade has ended. My mom told me last night, when I got back to Boston for Thanksgiving, that she can't believe 10 years went so quickly. She said "I know time moves a bit slower for you young people..." But I knew what she meant. I feel time speeding up these days, things beginning to move too quickly. Old things get so thin and faraway, like a ghostly image flickering in the window on an episode of The Hills—three kids sitting on a dorm room bed, yelling and laughing at the television, a forgotten but unwasted weeknight, life, loose and daily, blanketed around them.

Ah well! Such deep thoughts were soon washed away, as we found out the next morning who Kreeks had called. Stacie the Bartender came in and immediately poured herself a drink—which is what she does every morning, probably because she pours drinks for a living and it's a hard habit to break, but also because she's probably an alcoholic—and Kristin was lying in bed eating ice cream and staring at a small sea—a Caspian, a Dead—of other room service. S the B said "Um, is the shower on?" And Kristin's eyes crinkled and she made a gurgling sound. S the B said "Did you bring a boy home??" And I pictured that guy from the night before, dancing in the bathroom like he'd done in the club, only naked. My heart crinkled and my soul made a gurgling sound. WELL. It turns out it was Justin Bobby in the shower. Yep. Kristin called JB. Yep. The makers of this show really can't come up with any other interesting young man in all of Los Angeles for all of these batty bitches to fawn over. Justin Bobby is it. He's the tops, the ultimate, the creme de la creme. That's all we'll ever get.

So now that a boy is in town with the girls, it means the girls have to do what the boy wants, what pleases the boy. That's just the way gender dynamics work, right? So this involved going to a strip club and making out with each other so Justin Bobby would like them more. It was gross and said and Stacie the Bartender said "I feel like the third wheel" and everyone in America collectively laughed and said "You feel like the third wheel because you are the third wheel, always, like in general, in all of life." It was a chilling Greek chorus of voices, this Everyone in America suddenly speaking up and giving Stacie the Bartender the what for. But it was needed. Anyway, the two girls kissed a little (S the B seemed to want it more, probably hoping for extra airtime or perhaps a viral video sensation) and JB smirked dirtily and somewhere Gloria Steinem threw the popcorn bowl down and said "Oh for god's sake," and turned the channel to House Hunters, which she loves, but mostly spent the rest of the half hour just shaking her had and saying "Man oh man."

That's that. Justin Bobby and Kreeks, being equals in Las Boys.

Back in the canyon de los Babies, Spencer got freaked out because his dude friend told him: "If bitches don't drank or eat sushifish on a date, they mad pregnant." So Spencer took Heidi to drank and eat sushifish and Heidi didn't eat or drank. She just talked about Enzo, the Albanian midget who's been playing the role of an Italian child for forty years now in Hollywood, starting with the 1968 z-grade feature Waiter, There's a Baby in My Bucatini and later ending up as a scared child in many of Dario Argento's zombie movies. Spencer freaked out and then the laughtrack sounded and the episode was over. The whole Heidi and Spencer stuff is becoming such a sitcom. It's ridonks.

In the end, everyone didn't die and I was sad and maybe I went to go look at old yearbooks and listen to James Taylor and suddenly it was late and I had to get up for work the next morning and I closed my eyes in my childhood room and though everything still felt awfully small, for the moment it also felt still. And that was enough to lull me to sleep.

The City

Pop!

At one point on The City last night, a dopey model was told to whimsically open a fizzy bottle of champagne. She looked confused for a moment, then tried to open it up. The bottle sputtered for a second, sprayed lamely, and then the model lost her weak grip and it thudded dumbly to the ground. Everyone at the photoshoot stood around blinking.

There's your recap. Of this entire series.

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