Queer as Folk U.S.
The Leper, or, "Hath The Babe Not Eyes?"

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Babylon! Ted's doing some recruiting on the dance floor. He tells a tall Black HDGB, "I can tell you have a lot of talent. Really big talent." Ted gives NBA-HDGB his card, and tells him to call if he ever needs some extra dough. Ted pimp-struts back to Brian and Justin at the bar. Brian drawls, "Hey, Porn King. Why don't you introduce me to some of your new friends?" Brian's getting awfully lazy lately. Old Brian would never stooped to pick up after Ted's leftovers. Ted's leftovers, now. Ted ignores Brian and grabs his beer off the bar. That's when Justin notices the Rolex on Ted's wrist. Ted's like, "All those years seeing those wealthy clients come in with their big cars and their fancy jewelry. There I was this dumb jerk in a cubicle, hunched over a computer making them rich. Now it's my turn." Revenge is a dish best served gold. Emmett makes his way through the crowd, hailed, pinched and prodded at every turn. When he finally reaches the bar, he assures his friends, "Ultimately, it's all so empty. You know, at the end of the night, you still go home alone." Not if a passing HDGB giving Emmett The Look has anything to say about it. Emmett catches it and nods, "But not tonight." Emmett tries to follow the HDGB, but Ted jumps in the way to remind his cash cow that he has a show tomorrow. Emmett needs to conserve his strength: "And no more drinking and eating peanuts. You'll gain weight." Ted orders Em to go home and get some sleep. Brian and Justin can't believe what they're hearing. And then, before their very eyes, Ted tries to "recruit" the guy that Emmett was going after! Ru-ude! Emmett's mouth drops open in shock. Brian's outraged for him: "So Mr. Producer gets to go home with the hottie, and the porn star has to go home alone?" Emmett tries to gloss it over: "He's right. I need to conserve my strength." Brian asks to see Emmett's wrist. Raise your hands if you thought Brian was going to make a masturbation joke. Because I know I did. Instead, Brian admires Em's watch. Emmett replies that he's not wearing a watch. Brian points out that Ted, on the other hand, is wearing a Rolex. Emmett frowns. Justin snickers. Brian pats Emmett on the arm and tells him to go get his "beauty rest."

Enter Mike and The Babe. Ben gazes at the melee in glee, as gold glitter falls around them. He has the biggest, best smile. It takes up, like, his whole entire face. Mike laughs, "I thought when you said you wanted to experience the now, that you meant something spiritual." Ben tells him about a New Guinea tribe that dances until they collapse: "It's how they freed themselves from their bodies, from time." He has HIV. Time is important to him. We get it. Ben says that Babylon (!) bears a striking resemblance to that ritual. And then he takes off his shirt. And everyone is happy. Ben drags Mike into the middle of the floor, and the two of them boogie down. The Exposition Fairy sees them first and points the couple out to the rest of The Boys. Ted calls Mike over, and somehow, over all the noise, Mike hears him. Mike tells Ben that they've been spotted. Mike tries to warn him, but Ben's already figured that they're "judgmental? Vicious? Condescending?" And that's just Brian. Ben's game to go over and meet The Boys, anyway. He greets them all with his huge, friendly smile. Brian puts on his best sneer and tries to give Mike shit for lying to them about having to work. Ted thinks that Ben looks familiar, and asks if they went to the same college. Nope. Mike proudly tells Ted that Ben wrote the book R-U-1-2?. That's a sure tip-off, dipstick. And sure enough, that's where Ted recognizes Ben from. Ted excitedly tells The Babe that he read a book review in The Advocate and ran out and got it. Ben laughs, "So, you were the one." Ted replies, "Come on, you got great reviews. It was so honest, so forthright, so...revealing." Ding! Ben sees the recognition in Ted's eyes, but he replies, still game, "Yeah, well, that's what we writers do -- we sort of cut ourselves open and bleed all over the page." Unfortunate metaphors abound. Mike pulls Ben back onto the dance floor. Justin's like, wow, Ben's really hot. Brian shrugs that he's all right. Ted nods, "Looks, brains, he's a nice guy, too. I'd say he's perfect, except for one thing. He's positive." And I'm sure Mike doesn't mind you telling everyone, either.

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Queer as Folk U.S.

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