Sunday, May 17, 2009

Taking the Stage

So Rob and I have a new obsession (if by "obsession" you mean we watched it every week and dissected each episode at length and if by "at length" you mean 10 minutes or so) -- this show on MTV called Taking the Stage. It's this reality show about kids at a performing arts high school in Cinncinnati. Mostly it focuses on Tyler, a dancer, Jasmine, another dancer, Malik, also a dancer, and Mia, a singer/songwriter. Tyler and Jasmine were a couple until the second-to-last episode, when Tyler finally realized that their lack of decent conversations and eye contact were killing him slowly and he broke up with her. I'm sure Jasmine is a nice person, but she seems to be really shy and any niceness, if it exists, doesn't come across on camera. Sadly this will undermine her dance career, and hinder her in auditions and interviews. Jasmine is besties with Malik, who is gay and a really good dancer but a bit too Broadway -- he seems to want to be a hip hop dancer, but he doesn't quite get the style.

And then there's Mia. Mia is the real reason we watch the show. She's a singer and she plays guitar and piano, and writes all these beautiful songs about deep subjects, like how shallow she finds Tyler's relationship with Jasmine... because oh by the way, she has feelings for Tyler and he has feelings for her too but felt loyal to Jasmine, plus he's black and Mia's white, which was an unspoken undertone to the whole thing. In the season finale, Mia went to audition for this dickwad at Jive Records who ultimately decided she wasn't "ready" for a recording contract. Which might be true, but what annoying teenage/young adult recording "sensation" is ready? Is this moron telling me that Ashlee Simpson gets to have a career over someone with actual talent like my girl Mia? Yes, that's exactly what he's telling us. And it's sort of depressing, except I know that Mia is going places and she'll have that recording contract eventually, and Rob and I can buy all her albums. Also, she has red hair, and Rob would have been in love with her in high school, and she would have been nice to him but accidentally stomped all over his young heart because she wouldn't have felt the same way. Maybe.

The most amusing part of the show is where Jasmine goes around talking smack about Mia all the time because Mia and Tyler kissed at a party at some point after Jasmine and Tyler got together but Mia didn't know they were together, and the smack-talking just makes Jasmine look like an asshole when she seems to have been cast as the "nice girl." Like they'll cut to her in the audience of one of the many, many performances on this show, and she'll have this nasty-ass look on her face and be whispering what she thinks are snarky comments to her pal Malik. And so most proper-thinking people would have to assume she's kind of a bitch. Kind of. I think she just doesn't have anything else going on besides dancing; she doesn't seem to be very smart, and I think she liked the idea of having a boyfriend more than she liked the actual boyfriend. So now she's the bitch of the show, and she's so dumb she probably thinks that Mia is the bitch of the show because Mia speaks her mind and goes after what she wants and is a complete person, but totally not a bitch.

Oh, and Malik's drama is pretty good too. One audition, and he's all, "It's sooooo discouraging. They just didn't like me." And he's all set to quit and never dance again and his mom has to all build him back up again. When what the people at the audition really said was that he wasn't quite ready to be signed; he has a little more work to do. Isn't anyone teaching these kids to listen to what they're actually being told at these auditions? Apparently not. And then he also has some drama with this boyfriend he's had, but they're "taking a break" right now. I love, by the way, Malik's mom, who just totally seems to accept him as he is and loves him to death and is so supportive and everything. She's kind of awesome.

We can't wait for season two. This show is so much better than The Hills or Laguna Beach ever were. It's like someone finally realized that if we would all sit around and watch rich kids with nothing going for them other than their parents' money deliver half-sentences and shifty glances, we would be even more likely to watch kids with actual talents and lives who can speak in complete sentences! I'm so glad this was green-lit by someone.

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