Yep. That's right, kids. Sunday school is back in session. Now we've got a lot of ground to cover here, and not a lot of time to do it in, so sit up straight, everybody pay attention, and I'd better not catch any of you people wearing jeans. It's also going to be very important that you keep up with the required reading this season. The coursework includes texts from: The Bhagavad Gita, The Gospel of John, Nathaniel & Isabel in Mesopotamia, Blah Blah Blah Biblecakes, Alan Ball's The Indoor Bible, God's Love Is Infinite (And So Is Aaron's) by Lauren Ambrose's legal team, and, of course, Jeremy Sisto's seminal work in the field of literary Biblical interpretation: Was Jesus Really Creepy? A Stalker's Take On The Bible. And since I know you like reading with me, there WILL be a quiz in the final episode.
And speaking of Sunday school, it seems that the AOL Time Warner University's Department Of Synergistic Studies is still in full swing, as HBO is now sporting one of those WB-style "all your stars at a big party" ads. My personal favorite was the part where Edie Falco rubs James Gandolfini's big furry head, but I was also partial to the moment during the pre-show hype when Mike Binder described Rachel Griffiths as being "easy." Nice, Mike. Very nice. Asshole. And apparently, Alan Ball shares my sentiments on the subject of all this hype, because he proceeds to mock exactly the same sort of premiere party in the opening scene of his own second season premiere. Well, eventually, at least. First, however, we're treated to that most Dawsonian of all opening scenes: The fake film within a film. A nubile young blonde is cavorting about her bedroom in a pair of admittedly cute matching undies, and then all of a sudden I'm recapping Scream again. Munch -- uh, I mean, "The Butcher" smashes through the kitchen window (complete with Leatherface's mask, Freddy Krueger's penchant for sex-and-death-laden single entendres, and OJ Simpson's knife), and slices and dices the screaming blonde right into a smash cut which reveals that we're actually watching this at the movie's premiere (and the movie's name, by the way, is Whack Job, with the slogan: "Meet the butcher. He loves his work." Shout-out?). We see the recently beheaded blonde sitting in the audience with her actor boyfriend, and then wandering the party outside with her (much uglier) manager. The rest of the scene plays out as a very nicely constructed montage of a really, really bad night at a party, basically making it the Alan Ball inverse of HBO's new promo ad. Anyway, after enduring repeated warnings not to show her tits again, several trips to the bathroom to snort coke, and the wholly unnecessary mental image of Shawn Hatosy's ass, our little blonde baby finally ends up OD'd and puking in a bathroom stall. And while the sounds of everyone hightailing it out of the bathroom after she dies were hilarious, the actual shot her puking was itself a wholly unnecessary image as well. And that, my friends, is the sad, sad story of one Rebecca Leah Milford.
Alan Ball: Ahhhhhh. It's good to be back.