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S02.E01: War

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I love this show and so happy it is back!!

Darius' manager was banging Rachael in the opening scene up against the glass so no gay theme there.  They did that last season so wouldn't do that again anyway.   

Craig looks like Hugh Laurie (House) now.  I love that character.  I see big changes coming for Madison this season.  She plays the innocent very well but she is going to expose a darker side.  Looking forward to that. 

The writers are excellent, such good one line zingers.

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 Jay's got dirty hands. He needs to remember all the crap he's done.

Just because he has dirty hands doesn't mean he can't have lines even he won't cross. And he had a point. She's a black contestant who likely won't get that far or even get much air time except for when they make her look like 'Angry black woman' so quitting her degree to be on the show is unlikely to be worth it if she just wants a platform for her views. I was actually surprised that she fell for Rachael's bullshit that easily. Yes Rachael is supposed to be good at her job, but her argument wasn't even that compelling especially if you've watched the show which we were supposed to believe the contestant had. So I really hope she has other motives for deciding to do the show.

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14 hours ago, scartact said:

 

Not to nitpick because I love when my alma mater gets a fictional shout out, but when Rachel went to fetch Ruby and Ruby mentioned getting into Berkeley, my first thought was, "If that's supposed to be the Cal campus, that resembles no side of Berkeley I've ever seen before!" It'll be interesting to see how the show characterizes her activism. As someone who's been exposed to her fair of POC activist jargon, it'll be interesting to see how exactly they characterize her and how much that portrayal resonates with my own experiences.

 

And how cliché to describe her as an "angry black woman activist"  or however they put it, and then, coincidentally,  when Rachel goes to the school, she's in front of a display of "Black Power"  posters? Not studying, or in class, or anything else that a student might be doing.   Ruby is one-note, a character with only one personality trait, one idea.  I hated that.  

The Show Everlasting puts women in little boxes and labels them.  But it seemed like Unreal was doing the same thing.

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14 hours ago, scartact said:

But then we had to suffer through Jeremy's self-righteous bullshit bating and acting like he's morally above it so he could apologize to Madison on Rachel's behalf. As if he even has any authority to do it, other than his own so-called "good will." Ugh. Shut up, asshat.

It looked to me like he was trying to set the groundwork for some kind of Rachel harassment/ hostile work environment lawsuit.  He's out to get her, but even after all this time he has NO idea who he's dealing with.

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This show is outrageous on purpose.  They are going to use cliches, stereotype. pigeon hole and fly in the face of anything PC.  That is what this show is all about!  

I enjoyed the episode but after seeing the previews I felt disappointed in what was to come.  I don't like the direction this is taking.  Chet and Quinn each filming their own version does not sound or look appealing to me at all.  They have strayed too far from the format that got them rave reviews.     

In this OTT  show there have to be bones that hold it together.  A network is not going to put up the money for 2 versions and choose the one they like the best using the same lead.  It weakens the premise, totally. 

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2 hours ago, rubyred said:

But Jay is seeing the bigger picture with Ruby the Black Activist, and I think has reservations about how this show packages "reality" into catchy soundbites and favors contrived controversy over truthtelling. Rachel did a great job selling how the show was a great platform for Ruby's views, but Ruby is just idealistic and young enough not to understand the cynicism behind her casting. The show is crafted in the editing room, and her "platform" could  just as easily be completely undermined than showcased. Jay knows how the sausage is made, he's made some of it himself, so he sees the pitfalls, and I think that's realistic. It will be interesting to see if his reservations transform into actual action or if he too will be further drawn to the dark side like Rachel, in the interests of securing some money, dick and power for himself.

Agreed. I also think that perhaps Jay feels protective toward Ruby because she is a young black woman. I can buy Jay realizes he may be approaching his limits with Ruby. What I don't quite buy is his self-righteousness regarding other things Rachel does, other than perhaps it does come from jealousy (as posited in the PTV recap). I'm definitely interested in how he will continue to act and react during this season, and whether or not that will come to a head with Rachel (if not this season, then in the future; assuming, of course, Jay is long for this universe).

49 minutes ago, backformore said:

And how cliché to describe her as an "angry black woman activist"  or however they put it, and then, coincidentally,  when Rachel goes to the school, she's in front of a display of "Black Power"  posters? Not studying, or in class, or anything else that a student might be doing.   Ruby is one-note, a character with only one personality trait, one idea.  I hated that.

I don't think they've delved into her character yet though. It's only been one episode and she's had maybe 5-6 minutes of screen time. Finding her in the Student Union tabling doesn't strike me as odd, especially if she is socially and politically engaged. I mean, I went to the campus she was apparently at, and plenty of students did what she was doing. Just because she's in college, doesn't mean we have to see her in the library fretting over a midterm. I'm pretty fine with it as is. Mostly curious.

3 minutes ago, wings707 said:

This show is outrageous on purpose.  They are going to use cliches, stereotype. pigeon hole and fly in the face of anything PC.  That is what this show is all about!  

Well, I think the show is outrageous with purpose, especially to serve as a very sharp critique of the entertainment/reality TV industry. The show takes a very hard look at gender dynamics in the professional field, of how reality television feeds into stereotypes and constructs, and by often having these character either acknowledge or combat these constructs is part of the show's premise. I think it's extremely savvy, and I do like that it could be pushing the premise into other directions, as opposed to lather, rinse, repeat on the same subject year after year.

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1 hour ago, Swansong said:

Just because he has dirty hands doesn't mean he can't have lines even he won't cross. And he had a point. She's a black contestant who likely won't get that far or even get much air time except for when they make her look like 'Angry black woman' so quitting her degree to be on the show is unlikely to be worth it if she just wants a platform for her views. I was actually surprised that she fell for Rachael's bullshit that easily. Yes Rachael is supposed to be good at her job, but her argument wasn't even that compelling especially if you've watched the show which we were supposed to believe the contestant had. So I really hope she has other motives for deciding to do the show.

" I'm with the group who think Jay needs to stuff it with his (seemingly) sudden moral awakening."

That's what I was agreeing with when I said Jay had dirty hands. The "concerned looks" between him and W. As if they're so superior. They work on the show. If you had moral issues with that bullshit, you would quit. People do it all the time. I did it. The reddit AMA cameraman from Teen Mom 2 did it.

It's a dirty business and it's so interesting how everyone simultaneously makes fun of and judges everyone else they are working with (especially the talent, who production speaks of with contempt). It must be the stress.

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46 minutes ago, Magoo said:

It looked to me like he was trying to set the groundwork for some kind of Rachel harassment/ hostile work environment lawsuit.  He's out to get her, but even after all this time he has NO idea who he's dealing with.

Yeah, I agree with this. Jeremy, of course, read Madison all wrong. I think he was hoping to use her to get to Rachel; he could pour poison in her ears, feed her little bits of dirt, get her on his side. Maybe he'd seduce her--Jeremy likes to dip the old wick as much as Chet does. But Madison is not dumb. 

 

11 minutes ago, scartact said:

Agreed. I also think that perhaps Jay feels protective toward Ruby because she is a young black woman. I can buy Jay realizes he may be approaching his limits with Ruby. What I don't quite buy is his self-righteousness regarding other things Rachel does, other than perhaps it does come from jealousy

I think Jay is acting like an insufferable college sophomore--he's had his consciousness raised some, maybe he responds to the Black Lives Matter movement in a way he didn't expect, who knows? And props to him for that. It speaks well of him that maybe he's finding a principle somewhere. But he's like a 19 year old, rolling his eyes and blowing his hair off his forehead and muttering "Jesus, you're so LAME" under his breath at his parents when he comes home for Thanksgiving break.  

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41 minutes ago, wings707 said:

This show is outrageous on purpose.  They are going to use cliches, stereotype. pigeon hole and fly in the face of anything PC.  That is what this show is all about!  

I enjoyed the episode but after seeing the previews I felt disappointed in what was to come.  I don't like the direction this is taking.  Chet and Quinn each filming their own version does not sound or look appealing to me at all.  They have strayed too far from the format that got them rave reviews.     

In this OTT  show there have to be bones that hold it together.  A network is not going to put up the money for 2 versions and choose the one they like the best using the same lead.  It weakens the premise, totally. 

I got the impression (which may be totally wrong) that they would each be in charge of alternating episodes and seeing who  could get the best reactions/make the most interesting TV from the women, not creating 2 different shows.

But if there are 2 separate shows made from the same material, it will be interesting to see what editing does using two different takes on the same scenario.

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34 minutes ago, scartact said:

I can buy Jay realizes he may be approaching his limits with Ruby.

A woman killed herself last season. Jay wasn't her producer, but he could have been. That wasn't a line for him? Again, he can take his self-righteousness and stuff it.

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1 hour ago, wings707 said:

Darius' manager was banging Rachael in the opening scene up against the glass so no gay theme there.  They did that last season so wouldn't do that again anyway.

I saw that scene but thought it was airless, chemistry-free. And I would hope that we are beyond the time in modern entertainment that a "gay theme" considered broadly is considered so gimmicky that it would be a one-off for the run of the show.

9 minutes ago, Silo said:

I got the impression (which may be totally wrong) that they would each be in charge of alternating episodes and seeing who  could get the best reactions/make the most interesting TV from the women, not creating 2 different shows.

I got the opposite impression — two totally different shows. Now I am confused.

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20 minutes ago, scartact said:

Finding her in the Student Union tabling doesn't strike me as odd, especially if she is socially and politically engaged. I mean, I went to the campus she was apparently at, and plenty of students did what she was doing. Just because she's in college, doesn't mean we have to see her in the library fretting over a midterm. I'm pretty fine with it as is. Mostly curious.

 

Agreed.  Plus I thought it was implied that the semester was either just starting or hadn't started yet, so it would make sense that we didn't find her studying.  The table/booth she was at reminded me of the kind different clubs set up during freshman orientation and/or the first week of school to recruit new students.

18 minutes ago, guilfoyleatpp said:

That's what I was agreeing with when I said Jay had dirty hands. The "concerned looks" between him and W. As if they're so superior. They work on the show. If you had moral issues with that bullshit, you would quit. People do it all the time. I did it. The reddit AMA cameraman from Teen Mom 2 did it.

 

Not necessarily.  Sarah Shapiro, the show's creator, said she had to tell her bosses at The Bachelor that she was having suicidal thoughts in order to leave her job:   Obviously every show is different, and I assume it even varies from position to position (I would imagine that people in unionized positions would have an easier time getting out of a position), but I don't think it's a given that everyone is free to quit if they don't like their job.  

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5 hours ago, Eolivet said:

I liked the show for the most part, but I found Chet -- who I actually enjoyed last season -- extremely shoe-horned in. What is he, exactly -- and why did they never feel the need to tell us? Is he an executive producer? The new head of entertainment for the network? If he's the latter, I could see that as potentially running into problems with Quinn, but he just seemed to be able to run a lot of interference for absolutely no reason other than to be a jerk about it. The show is usually tighter than that, so it stuck out to me. Rachel as "new Quinn" and Quinn as "new Chet" were great, and then here's Chet to...put everyone back into their old roles? Lame.

I want to see everyone in new roles, not...repurposed roles because they didn't want to get rid of Craig Bierko. I realize Quinn needs an adversary, but it was just so clumsily done. I hope we get clarification of who exactly Chet is now and what he does -- otherwise, I'm dubbing his new role "Plot Device."

 I was confused by Chet's role too. He removed the suitor but how could the suitor just leave the set he was contracted to? Hopefully the logistics of this will make sense next week.

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2 hours ago, wings707 said:

 I see big changes coming for Madison this season.  She plays the innocent very well but she is going to expose a darker side.  Looking forward to that. 

I’m keeping my eye on Madison too.  She is definitely wet behind the ears, but I also think she is more savvy than she has let on. 

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1 hour ago, xqueenfrostine said:

Not necessarily.  Sarah Shapiro, the show's creator, said she had to tell her bosses at The Bachelor that she was having suicidal thoughts in order to leave her job:   Obviously every show is different, and I assume it even varies from position to position (I would imagine that people in unionized positions would have an easier time getting out of a position), but I don't think it's a given that everyone is free to quit if they don't like their job.  

The show doesn't get into business things like contracts all that often (thankfully), but I would assume it's harder for him to just willfully get out of his contract. I'm sure it isn't as luxurious as him coming and going as he pleases. Plus, given how heavily network-oriented the industry is, I'm sure it wouldn't be helpful for him career-wise to potentially leave with animosity.

I mean, I really do get what everyone is saying regarding Jay, but I am specifically referring to how he may feel about Ruby. The other things he does, like his pointed looks at Wagerstein about Rachel's actions and toward Rachel herself are irritating. However, overall, I find the actor much more likable and interesting, and I would rather be irritated by him than suffer through Jeremy's brand of holier-than-thou.

Additionally, I think obviously the dynamic between Rachel and Jay is also changed and I would definitely appreciate the exploration of it. Back in season one, Jay and Rachel seemed to have a fairly close and genial relationship (especially in contrast to Shia). Whereas before they were colleagues, it's entirely different for him to be working subordinate to her. That's gotta trip people out. Perhaps he expects more from her than to run the show as a carbon copy of Quinn's reign. All of this is speculation and I would definitely like to understand more of where exactly Jay's attitude comes from. As of now, it is annoying. But it doesn't put me off as much as it seems to for other people. Plus, is memory serves me correctly, he is the only queer black man in that high of a position of power, so I think it would be interesting to see how he responds to the intentional racebaiting Rachel intends to do with Everlasting.

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1 hour ago, nosleepforme said:

I thought this was a great premiere, but definitely not quite as good as last year's, but that's mostly because this episode was more about set-up. Last year we were all into the show within the first few minutes, the Suitor and the girls were introduced right away. This premiere spent more time on establishing the changing dynamics on the Everlasting set with the contestants and the suitor only being window dressing. So both premieres were meant to accomplish an entirely different thing. 


I didn't find Darius or the contestants as interesting as last year's yet. I am interested in how they will make this season's crop different from last year though. 

 

But the set-up for all the background shenanigans were on point. 

 

I loved the scene in which Rachel fired the guy from Jeremy's camera crew. That was just a marvellous scene with Shiri's smile as she walked away. 

 

The scenes with Rachel and Madison - they were soooo good and got so terrifyingly dark. That's UnReal at its best.

Yes. The episode was good but wasn't quite as compelling as the pilot. I felt I learned a lot about the contestants, the suitor, and the crew in a very short period of time. This season I don't feel I'm in Rachel's head as much as I was last year, and the contestants haven't impressed me yet. But it's early, I know. 

The scene with Madison interviewing Chantal was my favorite part of the episode. The way Madison kept crying and blubbering, Rachel's admonitions in her hear, Chantal's reaction--it was all hilarious. 

And I loved when Quinn called Madison out for wearing pigtails--even though she did use the un-PC R-word. Those pigtails bug me also. 

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I'm glad this show came back with a vengeance cuz it got really lackluster mid last season when everyone started getting all moral. And why is Jeremy back? Did anyone actually enjoy him in S1?

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18 minutes ago, scartact said:

The show doesn't get into business things like contracts all that often (thankfully), but I would assume it's harder for him to just willfully get out of his contract. I'm sure it isn't as luxurious as him coming and going as he pleases. Plus, given how heavily network-oriented the industry is, I'm sure it wouldn't be helpful for him career-wise to potentially leave with animosity.

I mean, I really do get what everyone is saying regarding Jay, but I am specifically referring to how he may feel about Ruby. The other things he does, like his pointed looks at Wagerstein about Rachel's actions and toward Rachel herself are irritating. However, overall, I find the actor much more likable and interesting, and I would rather be irritated by him than suffer through Jeremy's brand of holier-than-thou.

Additionally, I think obviously the dynamic between Rachel and Jay is also changed and I would definitely appreciate the exploration of it. Back in season one, Jay and Rachel seemed to have a fairly close and genial relationship (especially in contrast to Shia). Whereas before they were colleagues, it's entirely different for him to be working subordinate to her. That's gotta trip people out. Perhaps he expects more from her than to run the show as a carbon copy of Quinn's reign. All of this is speculation and I would definitely like to understand more of where exactly Jay's attitude comes from. As of now, it is annoying. But it doesn't put me off as much as it seems to for other people. Plus, is memory serves me correctly, he is the only queer black man in that high of a position of power, so I think it would be interesting to see how he responds to the intentional racebaiting Rachel intends to do with Everlasting.

Yeah I can see that what went on last year Jay might be a little more hesitant to fuck people up. Not just because of Mary but the way Chet screwed him over as well. I do think some Jay's pushback with Rachel is because he actually cares about her and is worried about what she is doing. I suspect he considers her a friend and may even turn out to be a better one than Quinn. He just needs to adjust to the new power shift and learn to check Rachel without undermining her. If you put Jay's attitude this episode in the context of their old dynamic its a lot less self serving. That's not to there isn't some jealousy on his part mixed in I just think there more too than Jay trying to stir the pot. I do think even if only for the sake of balance we need to see one man on that set in Rachel's corner. The world isn't split into MRA assholes and feminists if the show is half as smart as it thinks it is they will show that.

Something else I wonder if the show might touch on this season is how the gender dynamics are different with black and whites and how that intersects with feminism. Darius and Romeo reactions to Rachel highlighted that already whether the show meant to or not. Both men were a lot less threatened by Rachel's power than Chet or Jeremy, Romeo even seemed attracted to it. His reaction to Rachel's sexuality when contrasted with Jeremy's was a stark difference. Some of that is the writers wanting to show Romeo as a potential love interest but the language he used puts a racial element to it as well.

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3 hours ago, Magoo said:

It looked to me like he was trying to set the groundwork for some kind of Rachel harassment/ hostile work environment lawsuit.  He's out to get her, but even after all this time he has NO idea who he's dealing with.

Yeah that was why he was recording Madison puking and was on camera saying plainly that he was sorry that Rachel had made her do that and do something that disgusted her so much it made her physically sick. I bet if he keeps that footage he'll cut the part about Madison saying it was awesome.


Jeremy is a little shit. Ducking into that preproduction meeting to ask about that cut girls and calling that girl Hot Rachel in order to undermine her authority in front of the staff. He never would have been able to pull that with Quinn. Which is why I loved Rachel firing his guy. She has to remind people that she's in charge.

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3 hours ago, Silo said:

I got the impression (which may be totally wrong) that they would each be in charge of alternating episodes and seeing who  could get the best reactions/make the most interesting TV from the women, not creating 2 different shows.

But if there are 2 separate shows made from the same material, it will be interesting to see what editing does using two different takes on the same scenario.

3 hours ago, Margherita Erdman said:

I got the opposite impression — two totally different shows. Now I am confused.

I don't think they're doing two totally different shows, but I don't think they're alternating episodes either.  I thought they were planning to each produce a premiere episode using the same people, and then show them both to the network to see which they finding more appealing.  I think they'll either split the crew and each shoot their own version of the same bikini cocktail party or pool all of the non-interview footage that's shot by the crew (I assume Quinn and Chet will each want to do their own one-on-one scenes with the girls) and have each side cut their own story from it.

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1 hour ago, Emily Thrace said:

Something else I wonder if the show might touch on this season is how the gender dynamics are different with black and whites and how that intersects with feminism. Darius and Romeo reactions to Rachel highlighted that already whether the show meant to or not. Both men were a lot less threatened by Rachel's power than Chet or Jeremy, Romeo even seemed attracted to it. His reaction to Rachel's sexuality when contrasted with Jeremy's was a stark difference. Some of that is the writers wanting to show Romeo as a potential love interest but the language he used puts a racial element to it as well.

I definitely think Darius and Romeo regarded Rachel's power as less threatening because they were quick to believe Chet's superior position of power and follow him. I think this may even be an interesting commentary in how people in positions of power will often create conflict between those with relatively less power in order to maintain authority. This is even replicated in Chet kind of derailing Quinn and Rachel's partnership; their power struggle effectively creates another power struggle between Quinn and Rachel, and thus any solidarity that may be there is undermined because now both women have to fight to maintain authority that is so easily shaken by Chet's attempts to will the show back to him.

Meanwhile, while Jay may or may not be on the precipice of becoming a point of contention for people, I would love for his issues to be fleshed out and explored more so that we are getting more of that dimension of race from his perspective. He and Wagerstein are the only significant POC on the production team, and Jay is especially in a difficult position where he can speak up and combat it, or he can grin and bear it.

I want to believe in the of the showrunners' intentions because Shapiro and Noxon have said they and their writers took a lot of time to really think about race, and then I hope they took it one step further and really considered the intersectionality of race on gender and sexuality. There's a lot of complex issues to unpack and I do worry about how effectively it will turn out.

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I am going to give the showrunners' the benefit of the doubt. Until proven otherwise. However I fear that 10 episodes is not enough to fit it all in. 

Edited by earlbny

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I think the thing that bugs me most about Chet's return is that Quinn and Rachel had to look dumb for it to happen. Where is all their staff? Last year, there were three producers for all the girls with Rachel handling her girls and Adam. This year, they have more girls than before (since they added all those controversial women last minute) and they've got Jay and Madison handling all of them plus Madison (the slut who sleeps with everything) is apparently on suitor patrol because that will end well. That's just awful planning. I get that there are two issues at play here, the first being that UnReal is a TV show and they don't want to overwhelm the audience with new characters and the second being that plot-wise they needed a reason for Chet and Quinn to be at odds again, but the whole episode I was so annoyed that Quinn and Rachel apparently don't know how to hire anyone. They don't have enough producers for the cast and because of that it was way too easy for Chet to swoop in and hijack the show and that's totally on them for being bad managers.

I have no problem with Jay's characterization here. He's always been willing to get dirty for this job while still being very sensitive to race issues within the show. I got the sense that Ruby had achieved some level of social activist fame from the way Rachel was talking to her so I could see Jay respecting her specifically too much to want to see her ruined by the show.

Fuck Jeremy. Of all the awful people on the show, he is absolutely the worst because he thinks he's good people. He thinks he's a great guy who has been hurt and wronged by Rachel and that his actions are the completely uncontrollable reactions to things that have been done to him. Quinn, Rachel, Chet, Madison, Dr. W and Jay all do awful things but they own their choices. Jeremy is so heinous that he blames the disgusting and stalkery things he does and says on someone else.

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Rachel is an amazing manipulator, but ultimately Ruby is the one who said yes to appearing on the show. I think Ruby made a terrible mistake, but it's hers alone, so I can't feel too sorry for what might happen to her. She was aware enough to know the black women don't make it very far on the show, yet she decided to go on anyway. Whatever happens is partly on her.

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12 hours ago, scartact said:

Additionally, I think obviously the dynamic between Rachel and Jay is also changed and I would definitely appreciate the exploration of it. Back in season one, Jay and Rachel seemed to have a fairly close and genial relationship (especially in contrast to Shia). Whereas before they were colleagues, it's entirely different for him to be working subordinate to her. That's gotta trip people out. Perhaps he expects more from her than to run the show as a carbon copy of Quinn's reign. All of this is speculation and I would definitely like to understand more of where exactly Jay's attitude comes from. As of now, it is annoying. But it doesn't put me off as much as it seems to for other people. Plus, is memory serves me correctly, he is the only queer black man in that high of a position of power, so I think it would be interesting to see how he responds to the intentional racebaiting Rachel intends to do with Everlasting.

All excellent points! Jay has been shown to be very, very savvy, not just in terms of how the game is played for ambitious young producers who are interested in advancing, (he has show ideas himself, clearly he wants to be in Quinn's and now Rachel's position himself one day); but in terms of the human dynamics involved. Remember his scenes with Shia last season, after Mary's death? He was charged by Quinn to virtually hold her prisoner in a hotel till things settled down. He smiled and was calm, but my blood ran cold when Shia, overwrought and on the verge of losing it, tries to share her feelings with him and he shuts her down. Not unkindly, but firmly. And he says later that he doesn't want the responsibility of keeping her secrets. "you and I, we're still good". I enjoy seeing characters change and grow, so I wonder if this is a bump in the road or the beginning of a new direction for Jay. I also agree that it will be very interesting to see how Jay handles the racially charged atmosphere this season. He's been able to hold himself aloof from the casual racism he's encountered, or even laugh at it. I don't think those coping strategies will work for him now.

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First of all, Romeo, Curts' BFF is the guy from the Regal Movie Theaters intro that they play right before the main attraction, just had to get that out of my brain.

WOW! I thought Quinn and Rachel were unlikable the first season, they are REALLY unlikable this season. I have gotten used to not liking my lead characters Don Draper, Tony Soprano, I get it's a thing in TV.  But WOW! 

It is off to a good start, the Chet thing is a bit far fetched, and the dueling shows will be fun.  and was that Ioan Gufford I spied in the preview.  I am guessing he is the new head of the network.

I am not sure if it was intentional on the part of the casting director, but I love how all the contestants seem to be "C" level actresses that you would expect in basic cable movie. Unlike the actresses they cast last year who where more legit.  And that is exactly what I find in the quality of the contestants on the Bachelor and Bachelorette "C' level.  

SO Chet's chunk went to Jeremy, I did not recognize that actor.  

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19 hours ago, wings707 said:

I love this show and so happy it is back!!

Darius' manager was banging Rachael in the opening scene up against the glass so no gay theme there.  They did that last season so wouldn't do that again anyway.   

Craig looks like Hugh Laurie (House) now.  I love that character.  I see big changes coming for Madison this season.  She plays the innocent very well but she is going to expose a darker side.  Looking forward to that. 

The writers are excellent, such good one line zingers.

Just 'cause Romeo hit it off with Rachael, doesn't mean that he's not also into Darius.

As to Madison: I suspect Rachael started off very much like her.  I really liked the transformation from vomiting out of whatever emotion to "that was awesome!"

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I really want a flash back to Rachel and Quinn's beginnings - how they met, what formed this toxic yet mesmerizing relationship they have with each other. Did Rachel start out like Madison (a total newcomer) or was she always just a natural at this, coming from her background with her mother? I think Probably the latter, because I can't see Quinn wasting her time with someone who didn't already have "it", you know? 

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I really want a flash back to Rachel and Quinn's beginnings - how they met, what formed this toxic yet mesmerizing relationship they have with each other. Did Rachel start out like Madison (a total newcomer) or was she always just a natural at this, coming from her background with her mother? I think Probably the latter, because I can't see Quinn wasting her time with someone who didn't already have "it", you know? 

I would love it if they did that. Last season I got annoyed when they did not tell you everything about Rachel and Jeremy's previous seasons crazy meltdown. Since they only have 10 episodes and one one of them in the books I doubt we'll get much if that. I bet by episode 10 well barely know all the contestants that are left. I wish they had more episodes that introduce the contestants and tell more of the back story.

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I love backstory, but I don't mind filling in my own version of Quinn and Rachel's here. We know Rachel has a screwed up family, she went to Vassar (clear across the country, to escape them, no doubt), has probably had very angsty, troubled relationships with boyfriends, was probably guilted into coming back to CA by her mother, took a job in TV thinking she'd be able to write her novel at night and do volunteer work in her spare time. But she discovered not only a super human ability to zero in like a laser on people's strengths and weaknesses to influence their behavior, and a mentor in Quinn. She's been insecure and troubled most of her life, and now has found her genius. Trouble is, she can't reconcile the fact that she is great at what she does with hating herself for what she does. Quinn does not have this problem, she is intoxicated by her power over people, and doesn't fret about the collateral damage. She's amoral but not unfeeling. I believe she and Chet truly loved each other in their weird way. Quinn I see as a scrappy kid from a lower middle class background, I think her real first name is Debbie or Janice or something, and reinvented herself as "Quinn" to sound professional, polished, and strong. She worked her way through college at a restaurant or hotel where Hollywood heavyweights hung out because she wanted in to that world. She's worked her butt off for everything she has and does not understand anyone who is not as driven as she is. 

I would like to see a really good writer attempt a book version of the Rachel/Quinn backstory though!

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I, too, am annoyed by Madison's pig tails. But without them, how would we know when she has an epiphany and becomes all growed up and takes them out??????  

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5 hours ago, basically said:

 Did Rachel start out like Madison (a total newcomer) or was she always just a natural at this, coming from her background with her mother? I think Probably the latter, because I can't see Quinn wasting her time with someone who didn't already have "it", you know? 

I expect that she's always had natural talent, but that she still had to be taught some of the tactics and tricks of the biz.  There's clearly a mentor-mentee relationship between Quinn and Rachel, so I imagine Quinn did do a fair amount of guiding in Rachel's early days in order for that bond to be there.  But it's also clear that Quinn wouldn't spend that time on just anyone.  Early on in season 1, Quinn and Shia had a talk about why Quinn was favoring Rachel over, despite Rachel's fuckup and all of the work Shia had done in the aftermath of Rachel's meltdown.  And Quinn bluntly told Shia that Rachel had ability to get people to like and trust her, and that that's something that can't be taught.  I'm guessing Quinn caught a glimpse of that ability early on and took Rachel under her wing.

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7 hours ago, fastiller said:

Just 'cause Romeo hit it off with Rachael, doesn't mean that he's not also into Darius.

Yes indeedy, bisexuality is a thing.

Plus all these other fluid sexual identities that seem to be emerging. Down with binaries!

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4 hours ago, NaughtyKitty said:

I, too, am annoyed by Madison's pig tails. But without them, how would we know when she has an epiphany and becomes all growed up and takes them out??????  

I can see that happening. Maybe halfway through the season! ;)

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On 6/7/2016 at 9:31 AM, guilfoyleatpp said:

I also briefly toyed with the "money, dick, power" tattoo idea.

I sort of love it.

I think for now, I'll settle for the T-shirt. 

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I thought the reason Darius and Romeo went with Chet was because he made them a better offer - what no phone for weeks on end! unacceptable today and having to have the camera on them 24/7 also not what this guy wants. Nothing to do with anything other than a better deal. 

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19 hours ago, Margherita Erdman said:

Yes indeedy, bisexuality is a thing.

Plus all these other fluid sexual identities that seem to be emerging. Down with binaries!

Speaking of t-shirts, I want this on one!

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I actually thought they re-cast Jermey and making a tongue-in-cheek joke about it in the show.

Leave it Marti Noxon to keep the worst male characters around in Chet and Jeremy and ditch the one character who had Rachel's number and was interesting in Adam. She's the worst. 

I am over the shocked gasps from the AA guy and the Latina woman at what Rachel says. They were both there last season and know full well how this show works. 

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The band is back together! I'm so happy! Even if they are the most miserable lot ever assembled.

On 6/8/2016 at 5:32 PM, NaughtyKitty said:

I, too, am annoyed by Madison's pig tails. But without them, how would we know when she has an epiphany and becomes all growed up and takes them out??????  

I don't think she's taking them out. They're her super power. No one expects a wanna be shark wearing pigtails.

Edited by xaxat
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I wish we could have gotten rid of Jeremy. I don't really buy the idea that they can't fire him because of a possible sexual harassment suit. What? He's awful and pretty clearly being nefarious, trying to get evidence he can use against Rachel (like the way he was filming Madison). I mean, I loved the way Rachel fired back at him at the truck but I still don't know why we need him. I'd rather have Shia is the worst.

Speaking of Shia, I don't care what Madison did with Chet. Would they really give her all the responsibility Shia had with so little experience and apparently only two PA's. That's insane. How has Everlasting managed to last this long with this kind of decision making?

New Chet isn't too interesting but it's nice to see that he slimmed down. Maintaining that weight probably wasn't good for the actor. It would have been a shame if it was required for the role.

As usual, I wasn't happy with everything in the episode but by the time it ended, I was craving more. Next Monday is so far away...

Edited by aradia22
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On 6/7/2016 at 5:40 PM, scartact said:

The show doesn't get into business things like contracts all that often (thankfully), but I would assume it's harder for him to just willfully get out of his contract. I'm sure it isn't as luxurious as him coming and going as he pleases. Plus, given how heavily network-oriented the industry is, I'm sure it wouldn't be helpful for him career-wise to potentially leave with animosity.

I mean, I really do get what everyone is saying regarding Jay, but I am specifically referring to how he may feel about Ruby. The other things he does, like his pointed looks at Wagerstein about Rachel's actions and toward Rachel herself are irritating. However, overall, I find the actor much more likable and interesting, and I would rather be irritated by him than suffer through Jeremy's brand of holier-than-thou.

Additionally, I think obviously the dynamic between Rachel and Jay is also changed and I would definitely appreciate the exploration of it. Back in season one, Jay and Rachel seemed to have a fairly close and genial relationship (especially in contrast to Shia). Whereas before they were colleagues, it's entirely different for him to be working subordinate to her. That's gotta trip people out. Perhaps he expects more from her than to run the show as a carbon copy of Quinn's reign. All of this is speculation and I would definitely like to understand more of where exactly Jay's attitude comes from. As of now, it is annoying. But it doesn't put me off as much as it seems to for other people. Plus, is memory serves me correctly, he is the only queer black man in that high of a position of power, so I think it would be interesting to see how he responds to the intentional racebaiting Rachel intends to do with Everlasting.

I think this could be a very interesting dynamic, because, as Quinn pointed out, the minute that black football player starts making out and breaking the hearts of multiple white women it could get very ugly, very quick for a certain segment of the population.  

Having binge watched season 1 after this episode I do think that Jay/Rachel have a complicated relationship.  They are work frenemies, but I think their friendship is real and Jay is hurt to see Rachel strive to become Quinn.  He must feel like something in her died, like part of her spirit has been broken.  I certainly don't think that Jay is so much better, with his butt kissing of Seth last season and basically kidnapping Shia....but he may be one of those people that can only see those negative traits in another person like Rachel, but can't see how far he has fallen.

I also see where he is coming from with Ruby.  In season 1, Shameka (the light skinned black contestant) called him an uncle tom, and I felt as though that comment may have helped him see how far he had fallen.  Its interesting that Shameka made it to the final 4, even though she didn't go for Jay's plan, but the other darker skinned girl was down to play the "angry black woman" and didn't make it as far.  Perhaps it is an issue of acceptable skin tone on these shows.  I think, for Jay, its one thing if you go in with your eyes wide open.  When he presented the "dilemma" to his two girls in season 1, he did so point blank and without any subterfuge.  He pretty much came right out and told them "you need to play the angry black woman," one agreed, and one didn't.  In this situation, Rachel is being led to believe that she will be given a platform for her beliefs, and in her interviews she will probably give intelligent and well thought out answers to questions of race....and they will be spliced together to make her look even angrier than the black woman from season 1.

And I guess you could say that as an adult, Ruby knows what she is signing up for, but she is what, like 22?  I was pretty naive at 22....so I could see where, even if she saw the show, she would believe some slick line that Rachel is throwing her way.

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7 hours ago, aradia22 said:

I wish we could have gotten rid of Jeremy. I don't really buy the idea that they can't fire him because of a possible sexual harassment suit. What? He's awful and pretty clearly being nefarious, trying to get evidence he can use against Rachel (like the way he was filming Madison). I mean, I loved the way Rachel fired back at him at the truck but I still don't know why we need him. I'd rather have Shia is the worst.

I find that reasoning interesting....if he was inclined to file a sexual harassment suit, wouldn't he just quit and file it?  At this point, all he is doing is giving them cause to fire him which would get his case thrown out.  

I mean, everything he is doing is being documented at this point, so if he kept it up they could just fire him for cause and then he loses.

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He is being devoured by the need to give Rachel her comeuppance and assert his power over her. So he sticks around pointing his camera at anything he thinks he can use in his quest to punish her. His need to crush Rachel for good and all will have to take over, causing him to make terrible decisions and eventually blow up in his face, causing his utter humiliation. That's my theory for now anyway. He's not good at intrigue, though! He is so transparently gunning for her it will certainly be easy for Rachel to cut him off at the knees. 

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On 6/10/2016 at 2:14 AM, RCharter said:

I also see where he is coming from with Ruby.  In season 1, Shameka (the light skinned black contestant) called him an uncle tom, and I felt as though that comment may have helped him see how far he had fallen.  Its interesting that Shameka made it to the final 4, even though she didn't go for Jay's plan, but the other darker skinned girl was down to play the "angry black woman" and didn't make it as far.  Perhaps it is an issue of acceptable skin tone on these shows.  I think, for Jay, its one thing if you go in with your eyes wide open.  When he presented the "dilemma" to his two girls in season 1, he did so point blank and without any subterfuge.  He pretty much came right out and told them "you need to play the angry black woman," one agreed, and one didn't.  In this situation, Rachel is being led to believe that she will be given a platform for her beliefs, and in her interviews she will probably give intelligent and well thought out answers to questions of race....and they will be spliced together to make her look even angrier than the black woman from season 1.

And I guess you could say that as an adult, Ruby knows what she is signing up for, but she is what, like 22?  I was pretty naive at 22....so I could see where, even if she saw the show, she would believe some slick line that Rachel is throwing her way.

Shamiqua making it to the final four to me was a bit of ironic humor that if you didn't pick up on, then you wouldn't notice it, but if you did it would sort of make you feel good that she didn't take the route Jay provided. But yes, I think Jay finds a critical difference between asking two grown black women if they are willing to play the game this way vs. asking a young woman not even out of college yet, and even using her idealism as merely a tool for drama. For Ruby, her activism is most likely a very real and very important part of her, one that is also a key aspect of her identity, and for it to be used and abused for ratings is going to be painful. 

Part of the show's built-in conflict is that many of these contestants go in and believe they can outwit producers and play the game with them too, but they still get caught in the machine. It's almost tragic in that way, and they have absolutely no control over the narrative pieced together by their actions. Some posters say these women know what they're getting into, but really, how much do they really know? And even if they did, does that mean they deserve to be lied to and manipulated?

Edited by scartact · Reason: should have double checked spelling of names!
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13 minutes ago, scartact said:

Part of the show's built-in conflict is that many of these contestants go in and believe they can outwit producers and play the game with them too, but they still get caught in the machine. It's almost tragic in that way, and they have absolutely no control over the narrative pieced together by their actions

Right? Remember Brittany last season? They were trying to get her reaction after being the first one cut (to everyone's shock), hoping for fireworks. She pasted a sweet smile on her face and said "he's just such a great guy! I'm so glad I got the chance to be here!" and said to Rachel through gritted teeth "and i will keep saying that on continuous loop until you let me leave". But Rachel found a way to get the reaction she wanted. Brittany  absolutely knew the score and thought she could beat them at their own game. I don't think Ruby is a cynical as Brittany, but she might think she's smarter than the production team and underestimate them. Ruby will be the lightning rod this season, I think. She'll challenge Darius and will not endear herself to the producers. 

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13 hours ago, aradia22 said:

I wish we could have gotten rid of Jeremy. I don't really buy the idea that they can't fire him because of a possible sexual harassment suit. What? He's awful and pretty clearly being nefarious, trying to get evidence he can use against Rachel (like the way he was filming Madison).

They could fire him, but he'd probably sue, and a lawsuit would be messy and time-consuming. And as Pepper Mostly noted, Jeremy is hellbent on getting revenge on Rachel.

52 minutes ago, scartact said:

Some posters say these women know what they're getting into, but really, how much do they really know? And even if they did, does that mean they deserve to be lied to and manipulated?

I am one of those posters, so I can give my answer: They don't deserve to be lied to and manipulated, but do they really expect a fair playing field? This isn't the first season of Everlasting, so I don't think it's wrong to assume the show has gotten its fair share of press attention. I can't believe there hasn't been a tell-all interview from at least one contestant. I know the show doesn't really get into that, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

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24 minutes ago, dubbel zout said:

I am one of those posters, so I can give my answer: They don't deserve to be lied to and manipulated, but do they really expect a fair playing field? This isn't the first season of Everlasting, so I don't think it's wrong to assume the show has gotten its fair share of press attention. I can't believe there hasn't been a tell-all interview from at least one contestant. I know the show doesn't really get into that, but that doesn't mean it doesn't happen.

Sure, but I don't think the contestants really fully knows what they're getting into till they're actually in it. I think it's reasonable for them to expect they would be afforded some consideration, even if we as viewers know the producers will often aim for the jugular with them. It may seem naive, but the producers pick and choose people they believe will give them the best ratings, and I wouldn't be surprised if part of that selection process is how susceptible someone is to the conditions they create. If someone isn't a good candidate (i.e. they would have a tougher time manipulating them?), then they could just pass on them.

I just think there's a real tragedy to the contestants that gives me empathy for them. No, they aren't innocent either and they do ultimately consent by signing a contract, but they have absolutely no control over anything but their actions. And even then, those are often manipulated to create certain outcomes.

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11 minutes ago, scartact said:

It may seem naive, but the producers pick and choose people they believe will give them the best ratings, and I wouldn't be surprised if part of that selection process is how susceptible someone is to the conditions they create. If someone isn't a good candidate (i.e. they would have a tougher time manipulating them?), then they could just pass on them.

Certainly this happens. And you're right, you can't really know how something is until you're doing it. But even if you don't know how the sausage is made, it should be evident that contestants are edited to a particular degree. Someone like Ruby, who's savvy enough to know how black contestants have done historically, should understand at least this much.

I think the show (UnReal, that is) does a great job of making the contestants sympathetic, especially when it's showing how they're manipulated, but I'm still going to be critical of the contestants.

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I don't see the big deal regarding Ruby. She is not dropping out, just skipping a term with a very good and understandable excuse for her resume. Whether she is vilified by the show or not, she will get a good platform and start in her career. 

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