Wednesday, May 09, 2007

I love Workout.

No, not working out, Workout! It's a reality show on Bravo (which, for my money, has the market cornered on watchable, compelling, totally worthless reality TV) about a mid-30's trainer who started her own high-end gym in L.A. That's pretty much it.
The show totally wouldn't work if Jackie Warner wasn't such an ambitious, charismatic and interesting character in and of herself. She's a lesbian, and struggles mightily not to let that characterize and define her. Her father was schizophrenic and committed suicide when she was a teenager, and her mother is a wacko religious nutjob who thinks her daughter is going straight to hell, but loves her anyway, and they're always struggling, struggling, struggling.

Jackie's best friend is Jesse, also gay, and a little flamboyant, a trainer in Jackie's gym full of testosterone-fueled men, both gay and straight, and he seems to always be fighting to prove himself to them. To prove his masculinity but not sacrifice who he is. And he's just so sweet, but he's not a hardbody either, and everybody gives him a hard time about being "fat." He shrugs it off and says, "Well, maybe I'm fat in the gay world, but not in the real world."

The show is just about these people struggling, and living their lives amidst this crazy backdrop of celebrity trainers and supermodels. It doesn't overly politicize, or play to sensationalism. They date, they get in fights, they get their hearts broken, they try to branch out and do other things, they get sick of being so "fit," and binge on ice cream. I also like that the show uses a lot of psychology about people obsessing over their bodies and eating disorders (in "SkyLab," a program Jackie started to help overweight clients develop healthy lifestyles, lose weight, and address the real issues behind their weight problems). Plus, everybody on it's really funny.

I don't know. In the middle of the afternoon, when you're bored and napping on the couch, a marathon of this on Bravo is just the ticket to waste the hours. I love it.

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