It’s Getting GUGly in Here
And so, just one week in, we find our GUG-watching selves on FORT probation. That’s right, one more toe out of line and the whole forum is going to disappear like the only ethnic guy on The Bachelor. I can’t say I’m surprised. After all, this is pretty inflammatory stuff here, right? Explosive—like lighting up during a gasoline fight. So I would like to take this opportunity to request that, in this thread at least, you guys go on and…knock yourselves out. Cuss your little potty mouths off. Use all the lingo u r 2 kewl 2 resist. Hurl insults at each other. Question the virtue of each others’ mothers. Free me from my misery. Please.
On to the show… Victoria Gotti, a.k.a. “Vic,” is giving a report on her recent interview with Lauren Bacall to the Star staff (I notice witness protection girl is still kicking. The blob disguise has done its job well). According to Vic, Lauren’s secret for staying young and beautiful is (drum roll…) no sex, no exceptions. In an uncomfortable moment that drifts perilously close to sexual harassment in the workplace, Vic’s boss leeringly asks if Vic agrees with this method. Vic seems embarrassed, and replies in the negative.
You all know how much I adore Vic’s voiceovers, and I’m thrilled to say this episode is just chock-full of Vic-tastic nuggets of wisdom. She amazes us now with the revelation that understanding teenagers is hard. Wow. Deep. Let’s all ponder that. She claims that she can’t understand a thing Carmine and his friends say to each other. (That makes two of us. As long as the producers are going to be so heavy handed with this show, would it be too much for them to ask the kids to enunciate?) Vic is sure that if any member of their group does something stupid, the rest are sure to follow. (Is it wrong that I’m hoping one of the lemmings finds a cliff? Just for the good of humanity. The gene pool must be cleansed.)
Larry the Lemming, friend of Carmine, is getting a tattoo. Of a lemming. Well, that’s just what I think he should get. He wants to get a tattoo symbolizing love and loyalty—a lemming, then, for sure. Vic expresses her opinion on tattoos. She is against them. Unless they glorify her beloved father, the Teflon Don. (One wonders…would she be okay with a tattoo of a frying pan? Discuss).
There is some bad blood between Vic and Carmine over a tattoo he got the year before. It’s not completely clear what the conflict is over—something about Carmine getting permission to get the tattoo in order to honor granddad, which somehow no longer applies. “What’s it about now?!” Vic yells. Carmine doesn’t answer, so I’m left to assume that this is an interpretation issue. Because they don’t make morphing tattoos, do they? Ones that start out looking like a picture of John Gotti, but then fade into the playboy logo after a month… Well, I’m sure they’ll develop the technology soon.
Victoria hopes all the ink talk doesn’t influence her second son, John. We get a shot of John watching the tattoo discussion with interest. (It appears that Mr. Foreshadowing was unable to make the show tonight; he did, however, send his annoying, less subtle, kid sister to take his place.)
But Vic can’t watch these boys twenty-four/seven—she has to bring home the bacon (please note that the trite, overused phrases are not mine, but Victoria’s). For a moment, let us consider the GUG logo at the top of this page. The name Gotti, framed in gold and studded with diamonds like some rapper’s tasteless, oversized neckplate. This (and the mansion, and the cars, and the jewelry…) would seem to suggest that the Gottis are affluent, and I wonder why Vic always complains about making ends meet. Maybe it’s one of those rich people things—“I can’t afford to buy an island off the coast of Rio de Janeiro, thus I must be at starvations door.” Or maybe I’m too judgmental. You decide.
Hallelujah…It’s Raining Men
Vic whines that she’s so busy between work and kids, the only way she could meet a man was if he fell in her lap. (Lil’ Foreshadowing kicks me in the shins and runs away giggling). Within seconds, Vic is gushing about the “perfect specimen of a man” that is in the building’s lobby right now. She and her girlfriend (if she was introduced, I missed it, sorry) run down to the lobby. Why they bother to act casual while a camera crew is following them, I don’t know.
At the desk (where the receptionist is blurred—just how many mob informers did they hide in this building?) are Rob and his friend. Rob is a model, here for a shoot with Men’s Fitness magazine. Between gigs, Rob is a landscaper. Vic’s trustworthy girlfriend asks Rob to flex, and then she fondles his bicep. Ladies, don’t you just love that type of friend? The one who’s all over the guy you just told her you wanted? Yeah, me too.
Vic flirts with the boys for a few minutes (I use the word “boys” intentionally. They’re much closer to Carmine’s age than Vic’s) and then—after checking the script to make sure he has to—Rob asks for Vic’s card. Vic is all fluttery; she runs up to her office to get one. The Very Good Girlfriend brings Rob up to the office, catching Vic off guard. (“I’m gonna kill her,” Vic mutters. Someone ought to tell Vic that she shouldn’t make those kinds of jokes. Or, if she’s not joking, that anything she says can and will be used against her.)
Strangely (or, considering the scripted nature of this show, perhaps not so strangely) the tête-à-tête turns into a job interview. Vic offers Rob the chance to do her landscaping. Jumping at the chance for more airtime, Rob agrees. Ah, where would reality TV be without aspiring models?
Rob and Vic and the Very Good Girlfriend walk out of the building in one of those awkward “we’re going to the same place at the same time but not together” moments. Rob calls a friend for a ride, and Vic says that if her car wasn’t a two-seater, she would give him a ride. The next thing we see is Rob in the passenger seat of Vic’s convertible, with the VGG perched practically on the trunk. Payback sucks, girlfriend.
Rather abruptly, we are outside a club called “Bogart’s” with the Gotti boys. Larry and John are discussing the tattoo John is planning to get. John says he wants it to be “this big,” as he traces a trapper keeper–sized square on the side of the building (sorry, I’ve been school shopping today). Now, I miss a lot of this conversation, even with the closed captioning on, because these boys mumble like Guido broke their jaws for being late with the protection money. There was some talk about a tattoo that Carmine(?) wanted. A “gorgeous piece” depicting the four faces of John Gotti bound together by chains. (If John Gotti has four faces, wouldn’t at least one of them have to be a vicious killer? There I go, being judgmental again. Bad spegs.)
Larry enjoys rubbing in how much the tattooing is going to hurt. He says that when he got his, he “wanted to cry,” and a strange echo effect repeats the word “cry, cry, cry.” The editors must be as bored as I am—they’re trying to spice it up.
A Bird in the Hand is Worth Two in the Rosebush
Cue the hot landscapers. Vic is peeking through the glass part of the front door (Vic, this isn’t the police station—that’s not one-way glass) while Rob and his anonymous side-kick strut up the walk with the title “Rob, the Hunk” under the picture. My favorite quote of the evening: Vic says, “Michelangelo himself couldna sculpted two betta lookin’ landscapers.”
The Very Good Girlfriend is there to ogle with Vic. She and Vic talk with the Adonis boys in the kitchen. Vic flirts a little, very lame stuff about how she needs their help because it’s “just lil’ old me here.” Old being the key word. Finally Vic gets around to what needs to be done. One place that she really has a problem with is “my bush area.” The sound edit is painfully obvious. She continues to discuss her dying rosebushes, oblivious to what the twisted producers will do with this scene.
Vic takes the boys on a tour of the property. The pool is still full of crap. Vic asks Rob what the name of a certain plant is, and he doesn’t know. If he was really here for landscaping, this is the point at which he’d be fired (Luigi would have been out on his unattractive butt). Vic also asks them to wash her Mercedes. Tacky. That’s like asking the grocery checker to walk your dog. Vic goes back inside and peaks through the windows with her friend as the boys get to work—posing for the cameras. The shirts come off just as fast as you knew they would.
It Works for Demi
John comes home with Larry in tow. In a scene so forced it hurts, the landscaper boys challenge the mafia boys to a basketball game. Vic and Girlfriend come watch, and Vic cheers for her son. It does no good; the pretty boys (sans shirts) whup the home team. Vic mutters that anyone who touches her son is going to have problems. Given the Gotti’s record, nobody’s about to argue with that.
At least Vic is a little bit self-aware. She and Girlfriend are talking inside now, and Vic tells Girlfriend that this whole thing is silly. Rob is 26. He was hanging out with her son. She seems to get the ick factor, though Girlfriend doesn’t. Girlfriend points out the lasting commitment of Demi and Ashton, and Vic calls the lovebirds “freaky.”
Back to reality, Vic insists. Where are the kids?
Gettin’ Ink Done
At the tattoo parlor, naturally. John is with Larry and a new “family friend,” Vito—who looks like a bouncer. Friend of the family, wink wink, nudge nudge. Vito says this is a good place—John’s father got a tattoo here, as did his Uncle John. Vito teases John that the needle will go all the way to the bone.
John gets a minor monologue, and it’s mostly comprehensible. Apparently, a tattoo at the age of 17 is an important right of passage into Gotti manhood. Since nothing is more important to him than his grandfather (those childhood visits to the federal prison seem to have left a big impression on John), John’s tattoo will be a tribute to him. It’s a large, elaborate cross that I assume refers to Grandpa John in some way. I don’t look that close.
The tattoo artist warns John that if he passes out, they will take naked photos of him and send them in to a magazine. This exposure is going to be great for business at the parlor. You can’t buy this kind of publicity.
John is pretty stalwart through the ordeal. I am less so; I have to watch through my fingers, and even then I get a little grossed out. The tattooing lasts long past nightfall, but, finally, the deed is done. John is bandaged and sent home to face the music. Vito thinks Vic will be fine, since the tat honors grandpa.
Vic seems to have already heard, and she is not fine. Vic is pissed. She is ranting to Girlfriend, who hopes the tattoo is not too big. “Let it be big,” Vic growls. “’Cause I will take it right off his back.”
John comes home and shows off his artwork. They fight. John calls her crazy and Vic says “I’ll show you crazy!” But she doesn’t, and I’m disappointed. I was hoping for a Simpsons-The Shining scene (“No TV and no beer make Homer…..” “Go crazy?” “Don’t MIND if I do!”).
Robbing the Cradle
Vic feels the need to get out. Conveniently enough, the landscape boys have invited Vic and Girlfriend out in a scene that mysteriously didn’t make the editing cut. Maybe because it was a three-way call that included the producer. Vic dresses to kill in all white (as opposed to all black, which is the other outfit she wears. Seriously, what is that about? Discuss) and she and Toula (I found out Girlfriend’s name, aren’t you proud) head to a favorite restaurant, where they eat and see many friends while they wait. And wait. For an hour. Toula sneaks outside to call Rob. Vic is pissed. Rob may be young, but she thinks he should be old enough to tell time.
Once Rob and Friend arrive an hour and a half late, Vic shows us the key to any man’s heart—a stern lesson in good manners. Men love criticism. More than pole dancing. But all is not lost, the date will be saved—they’re going out for some karaoke action after dinner. Ah, karaoke, the irresistible music of love.
Vic proves impervious to the charms of karaoke. She says that Rob looks like a stripper, and, surprisingly, she sees this as a negative. I assume she’s referring to his brain when she says he has nothing under the hood, because it didn’t look like the date was friendly enough for her to make judgments on his other parts. The theme song, “These Boots are Made for Walking,” plays while Vic walks out early on another date. I sense a recurring theme.
The beautiful moment has come; another week of GUG is behind us. But I sense an atmosphere of hostility here… You don’t like my take on the Gottis? Well…let’s fight about it. C’mon. I triple dog dare you.
Let’s take this outside… firstname.lastname@example.org