Queer Eye Recap: Raising the Barkeep

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queer eye

Unleash the Sexy Beast Season 2 Episode 3
Editor's Rating 2 stars

After the first episode, where we basked in the divine glory of Tammye, and the second episode where William made us weep with his rom-com proposal, there was bound to be a bit of a lull with episode three. Man, was it a lull.

That’s not to say that Leo, the Mexican Santa Claus, is a bad guy. He seems to be a great guy. The best guy! Then again, most slobs are really great people. It’s like the skills it takes to be extremely fastidious and the skills it takes to be an extrovert are mutually exclusive. It’s like you can either spend moments of your day making your bed and picking up wet towels, or you can entertain people at the bar, but you can’t do both.

It makes total sense that Leo is a bartender because he has that easy affability that makes for a great tap master. However his schedule is awful and he’s always bringing home leftover bar food and his wife Bethany is sick of it. It gets so bad that Antoni is forced to cook. Yes, you got that right. Antoni cooked real actual food in a real actual pan by throwing a bunch of different kinds of leftovers together in a “stir fry.” It looked pretty tasty but several of the Fab Five were refusing to eat it, so who even knows.

Now that he cooked once this episode, Antoni couldn’t be bothered to do it again, so he took Leo to an Italian restaurant so another chef could teach him how to make fresh pasta. Making fresh pasta is sort of like giving yourself a blow out: Everyone knows you can do it at home but it’s just so much easier to pay someone to do it for you. That’s why you can buy fresh pasta in the store or, you know, go to an Italian restaurant. There are so damn many of them because pasta, while delicious, is impossible to make.

Antoni also teaches Leo how to cook a tomato-based sauce. Wow, he was actually really damn busy this episode. I shouldn’t be so mean to Antoni. Instead I should cuddle with him and scratch his back in small, light circles until he purrs like a Parisian cat until the sun comes up. Oh, yes. That is definitely what we should do.

Then Antoni gives Leo a pasta maker. First of all, pasta can’t be the only meal you make. Sure, Italians eat it all the time, but Americans don’t eat like Italians and all of those starchy carbs are bad for the insulin levels. A pasta maker seems like a great idea, but it’s totally one of those things that just takes up precious counter space and ends up gathering dust after a month while you glare at it with hatred when trying to fit a baking sheet on your already tiny kitchen island.

Tan had his work cut out for him, because Leo said to him, “It’s just clothes, who cares?” at the beginning of the episode. And with his collection of free T-shirts he’s collected in his 40 years you could tell Leo kind of felt that way. But that attitude is also bullshit. Everyone cares about the way they look. Those that look horrible have just given up for various and assorted reasons. I think the biggest job the Fab Five really have is to just give these guys a push so they know what’s possible and they can settle into taking a little bit better care of themselves and feel comfortable that they’re not going to be judged. I think for a lot of guys they’d rather look schlubby than like they’re trying to hard.

Once again Tan just threw Leo in some clothes that actually fit him and a few short-sleeved button down shirts and called it a day. See, guys, it’s not that hard. Just a pair of jeans that fit, a pair of cute shoes, and a few tops and everyone will think you’re super boss. Done and dusted, mate.

Jonathan cut his hair and made him look very handsome. Sorted. I guess with Antoni doing so much real actual cooking this episode we didn’t even have much time for Jonathan to swan around and talk about the amazing clothing he’s wearing. Oh, that reminds me. What did you think of Antoni in a suit with Italian bus driver hair? I didn’t like it. I mean, I’d still hit it until Kim Jong-un fires the first nuke, but give me a Strokes T-shirt, a knotted bandana, and a pair of Hanes any day and I’m happy.

I didn’t think that Leo and Bethany’s house was all of that bad to start with except for their really sad closet. It was built into the eaves of the house, so Karamo couldn’t even stand in it without hitting his head. The worst part though is that Leo and Bethany put in what appeared to be towel bars and then hung all of Bethany’s high heels from them like so many fashion bats roosting there in their closet. Bobby redesigned the house and, like always, made it look like a West Elm showroom somewhere in Sheboygan. At least he got rid of the shoe bats.

The other thing I hated about Leo’s house was the giant photo of him and his wife that they had printed on a canvas and hung up over the couch in the living room. When I saw the new living room I thought it was thankfully in the trash, but it turned up over their new headboard. I’m sorry, but unless you’re like Padma Lakshmi and famous artists are painting your portrait, you should never have anything bigger than 8.5” by 11” of yourself hanging on your wall. I mean, no one wants to be confronted so hard with your image when they come to visit, I assure you.

Karamo’s job this episode was almost unbearable. Leo was upset that he doesn’t have any dad friends and Karamo tried to find him some. I know why he doesn’t have any dad friends, because he works in a bar! He says he’s intimidated by the other dads, but I think the real problem is that most dads have normal jobs with normal hours and are passed out before Seth Meyers, which is just when Leo is hitting his night-time stride. If he wants to hang out with grown ups, he needs a more regular schedule.

Still Karamo set up a group play date for Leo and a bunch of dads whose kids go to the same school as Leos. They all sit around awkwardly doing that stupid triple handshake that Karamo makes them all do (which really is the “fetch” of the Queer Eye world) and then they hugged themselves and pretended to have dad swag or something like that. It was horrible. I almost died of second-hand embarrassment and then came back as one of Antoni’s bandanas.

But in the end Leo looks great, his wife is happy, he has a new wonderful house, and the world is a little bit of a better place. I didn’t cry once and we didn’t get to see anyone with his shirt off, but I won’t consider it an entire loss. But, damn it, the next episode better be a lot better.

Queer Eye Recap: Raising the Barkeep