So it’s that time again: time for your weekly recap of Transamerican Love Story!

Last night’s episode started with Callie’s plan to entertain the men with a performance of her own design. She wrote a song and choreographed a burlesque performance to go along with it, and I have to say that I was fairly impressed – it wasn’t quite traditional burlesque, but Callie’s performance was quirky and fun, and she looked smoking hot in her little sparkly bustier thing.

Anyway, Callie hustled all the men off to a little Hollywood-scene club, full of queer people and drag performers, and turned them loose in the crowd while she prepared for the performance. It was quite amusing to watch the men mingle: Jim, of course, fit right in, as did Peter (though he does talk a lot – more on that later). Shawn, though it clearly wasn’t his scene, jumped right in and made some friends. Mike, bless him, made the best of it – he ended up sitting on the lap of a drag queen, though it was unclear if he knew at the time that she was in drag. Mark, however, looked and acted uncomfortable the whole night – could it be that pesky homophobia peeking out again?

After Callie’s performance, she surprised the guys by explaining it was now their turn to be performers – they would don costumes and put on their own burlesque show, judged by the lovely drag queens in attendance, plus the Original Club Kid – James St. James. Backstage, the ever-faithful Andrea James was waiting with a rack holding five costumes: a naughty police officer, a Technicolor biker, a Larry Byrd-inspired basketball uniform, a stripped-down version of a military uniform (complete with dog-tags), and a lifeguard’s uniform. The men dug in: Mike grabbed the police outfit, Jim the biker, Shawn the basketball and Peter the military digs. Mark, again, stood back and sulked for awhile before deciding not to put on the lifeguard costume (which consisted, I think, of a Speedo and a whistle), but instead to venture onstage in his own clothes, using his wrestling schtick as his “act.” Sigh. What. Ever.

One by one the men did their thing – Peter did some sort of freestyle-aerobics-breakdance for a really long time; Mike flexed his well-defined muscles to the delight of the crowd; Shawn showed off his mad skills with the b-ball (and a little bit of his, ahem, junk); Jim did some weird jumping around thing in the skimpy biker underwear immediately after pouring water all over himself. And Mark – oh boy. Mark was a winner. Remember: he wanted to do his wrestling bit. So he pushed open the doors, spitting a mouthful of water into the air as he went (hosing down James St. James and Miss Kitty, no less), climbed on stage, took his shirt off and flexed for awhile, screaming something about how he was Mark the Razor. :shaking head: I just don’t get him at all.

After all the performances were complete, the judges gave scores: Mark, no surprise, got a big fat total of 7 from the three judges. Mike got a perfect 30, and got to share an intimate ride in the limo with Calpernia (read: they made out like horny teenagers). The rest of the guys just went home, sad and dejected because they didn’t get to make out with Callie.

At some point, Peter cornered Jim and just started talking and talking and talking and talking about all the questions he had about Jim being trans. Does it mean he’s gay or straight? Does he still remember what it was like when he was a girl? Does he have pictures? Does he prefer to forget about that? How did he know? When did it happen?

Sheesh, Peter, you got a lot of questions. I’m just sayin’.

Later, Peter and Calpernia had a little one-on-one time. Peter started drinkin’ the bourbon, and then started talking. And talking. And talking and talking and talking and talking. He talked a lot. Then he stopped – and asked Calpernia a question. And didn’t listen to a damn thing she said.

Fast forward to elimination: Jim got the first invite, then Mike and Shawn. The final decision was between Mark (hah!) and Peter, and Mark was PISSED. He was visibly shaking, and his hands were curled into fists, which were tightly gripping the lapels of his jacket. It was a bit scary: should anyone really be that angry? He freaked me out more than a little. But alas, Callie decided to keep him, and I can’t say I blame her for getting rid of Peter: adorable and talkative (!!) as he is, they had zero chemistry. Donna and I think he might actually just really be into guys.

And the weekly round up of my ever-changing opinions on the remaining contestants:

Shawn (now known as Mr. Smooth) is still my top choice for Calpernia. He’s even-keeled, open-minded, and best of all – he seems very kind. Plus, he had a really great sense of humor about his, ahem, goods flying all over the place during the burlesque show in front of strangers.
Jim – goodness. Jim is totally my favorite on this show: he’s adorable, with that lovely smile, and I think he’s 100% honestly digging on Calpernia. He and Shawn are really running neck-and-neck in my book.
Mike – well, hm. I have to admit that I seem to have been wrong about Mike, which is a nice thing to know. He’s way more open-minded than I was willing to give him credit for. As Donna said, “We’re just so used to that one type of Christian…” – and she’s right; I’ve gotten so used to the Fred Phelps-style bashings that I forget there are Christians in the world like Mike. So thank goodness!
Mark is still a scary, scary man, and is running dead last for me. I hope Callie gets rid of him in the next episode.

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