Later, Ashley meets with a local magazine editor about taking part in the NoH8 campaign. Ashley immediately dismisses the idea and launches into her own concept—something about shoving hate into the face of straight people—which the editor accepts with remarkable good grace. She talks about the prejudice gay men endure and begins to sniffle with seemingly genuine concern; the editor has no Kleenex, so she dabs at her tears with a business card! Attagirl!
But Ash also refers to being gay as “the homosexual lifestyle” and remains stubbornly fixed on the idea that all gay men are inherently finger-snapping, wig-snatching flamers. And the male model for her photo shoot is made up as “half straight-guy, half drag queen.” Except the “straight guy” look is long, flowing hair and the “drag queen” is basically goth eyeliner. Oh, Princess Ashley! Once again you stamp out the tender sprouts of empathy just as they break through to the sun.
Continuing this season’s subplot involving the often complicated, emotionally fraught relationship between gay men and their families, there is a heartwarming scene between Chase and his Aunt Jena and Uncle Gary. They are apparently the only members of his ultra-conservative family who will have anything to do with him (“They don’t like me, either,” Uncle Gary jokes good-naturedly). Chase is in a funk about celebrating another birthday without the participation of his immediate family.
It turns out Aunt Jena is the person Chase called in desperation, some years back, when he was contemplating suicide. She talked him out of it and remains a stalwart supporter. She tells him his parents are missing out on someone worth knowing. Kudos to you, Aunt Jena!
Meanwhile, Taylor the Terrible and James meet for lunch in a mostly empty restaurant to bond over a shared dislike for Levi; the fact that James caught up Taylor in a bar fight that led to his being 86’ed from the venue is apparently water under the bridge. Taylor has hatched a scheme to exact revenge on Chase, with whom Levi had been bird-dogging behind Taylor’s back when they were “monogamously dating,” by hooking up with Chase’s handsome BFF Mohammed.
Honestly, it’s a weak plan for a schemer like Taylor. Even the halfway-soused James is nonplussed by the idea. Pop quiz: who thinks anyone will buy that Taylor has suddenly found romance with the best friend of his reviled ex-boyfriend’s equally reviled new lover? Exactly. Come now, Taylor. We expect nothing short of Levi strapped to a table in your secret laboratory as a laser burns a line straight to his fabled crotch. Taylor does claim that this plan for revenge was “a thought from God.” Yup, that’s more like it.