Happy New Year!

2016 is going to be a great year on Oasis and Adrian and I have a lot of stuff in the works.

Since we've been alluding to "changes" coming up, it seems like the start of the new year might be a good time to tip our hat a little bit as to what we're planning. We have already contacted mckinney movers for advice.

In the very near future, Oasis will become two sites.

DVD Review: "Fixing Frank"

By Jeff Walsh

"Fixing Frank" is an engrossing movie that tackles the subject of conversion therapy. When the movie starts, Frank is in a session with Dr. Apsey, saying things that clearly show him to be a self-hating homosexual. We quickly learn that Frank doesn't really hate himself, but is working with his therapist boyfriend Jonathan on an article to discredit Apsey's practice of helping homosexuals become happy heterosexuals.

The movie is a claustrophobic puzzle that gives each character a positive portrayal. It would have been so easy to make Apsey into a villain, make him a former homosexual himself, or stack the deck against him in many other ways, but Ken Hanes (adapting his stage play to the screen) never takes the easy path. Apsey is compelling and caring, and seems well intentioned.

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Cherry Jones Interview

By Jeff Walsh

In Doubt, Cherry Jones delivers an amazingly nuanced role as a nun that is convinced a priest behaved improperly with a young boy, despite not actually seeing anything incriminating. She just feels in her bones that what happened was inappropriate and has no ability to think otherwise. The play uses this exchange to question how we know what we know. In an age of polarization, how do we see with such certainty and, if that is the case, what chance is there to move forward if neither side questions their beliefs.

Doubt is a small show asking big questions. With a cast of four, it has an agility and focus to it that a larger show wouldn't allow. While the potentially pedophilic priest is an easy target, the show is just using that example to raise other questions.

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Spring Awakening: Broadway Review

By Jeff Walsh

Spring Awakening is the newest show on Broadway (at the time of this writing), fusing together the text of a controversial-for-its-time play with a rock score by singer/songwriter Duncan Sheik. Fusing the two elements together made for some great musical moments and some interesting dramatic moments, although they rarely overlapped. First, we are in a Latin class in a German school in 1891, then one of the kids reaches into his jacket, pulls out a microphone, and all of the angst from the previous scene fuels the song as the electric guitar and drums kick into high gear.

I liked both sides of the show, the classic play and the rock concert, although it rarely seemed to fuse into one experience. When it did, such as the close of act one, when the young couple make love on a miniature floating stage, as the singing cast sit around them, rocking them slowly, and singing "I Believe," it was inspired magic, the reason people go to the theater, a moment of pure exhilaration when every element of the production combined flawlessly to create something greater than each of its parts. The cast, the music, and the audience all went somewhere else together in that chorus, and came out the other side better for the journey.

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Avenue Q: Broadway Review

By Jeff Walsh

I'll admit up front that I was hesitant seeing "Avenue Q," primarily because the people who talked it up got really excited when The Muppet Show was released on DVD. They reeked of bias. Not that I'm anti-puppet, necessarily. It was always an issue of "but there are all these other shows to see with, like, people in them." My fears ended up being misguided.

"Avenue Q" admittedly doesn't take itself seriously, but it's not self-referential or a send-up of a Broadway musical done with puppets, either. The show stands on its own. The songs are all fun, well-written, and memorable. The strangest thing to process was the puppeteers performing onstage with their puppets on one hand and wands to move the puppet's arms in the other. The natural inclination was to look at the puppeteers, despite them being clad in neutral tones and delivering their performances through their puppets. They often had the same expressions as their puppets, and were fully invested in the role so they were singing fully and passionately (it wasn't ventriloquism). But after a while, you'd realize that the scene, songs, and sightlines were all happening between the puppets and the human actors playing other roles onstage, so you eventually shifted your focus.

Little Miss Sunshine: DVD Review

By Jeff Walsh

Little Miss Sunshine walks a fine line for the duration of the movie. It always seems in danger of being too self-conscious, too precious, or too cutesy, but never crosses the line where you stop being pulled into its world.

The movie follows the old warhorse of plots, the road movie, but somehow pulls it off. The premise is that a guy has to drive from New Mexico to California for their youngest daughter Olive to compete in a beauty pageant she entered when visiting relatives in California. Olive's father (Greg Kinnear) is trying to sell his motivational book, "Refuse to Lose." Her grandfather (Alan Arkin) taught her the dance routine, and curses like a sailor. Her brother (Paul Dano) has taken a vow of silence until he enters the Air Force Academy and only communicates to the family with hand gestures, facial gestures and, when all else fails, writing things down on a notebook. Olive's mother (Toni Collette) is just trying to keep this oddball assortment of a family together.

Welcome, back!

OK, after a way-too-long trip down memory lane for me, I am happy to report that every interview and profile done on Oasis over the past 11 years is now online!

So, if you want to read interviews from Camille Paglia, Rufus Wainwright, Randy Harrison, Anthony Rapp, Wilson Cruz, Christopher Rice, a fictional author (JT Leroy), and many, many others, just keep scrolling down the main page here, and there are now 9 full pages of content.

Brad Virata of 'Survivor: Cook Islands' Interview

By Jeff Walsh

Brad Virata went on Survivor to break stereotypes and win a million dollars, but only accomplished one of his goals. He was voted off the show on the show's eighth episode, but became the first member of the jury that decides who wins the million dollars. On Sunday, December 17, he will be on the jury that selects the million-dollar winner and appear live on the reunion show that follows. Throughout the show, Virata seemed to be having fun with the whole notion that he was playing a game, rather than follow the stressful (albeit possibly more successful) path of other people on the show. Whenever the game had a twist, he was there smiling and taking it all in, while everyone else winced, plotted and schemed. Chatting with him on the phone, it becomes very clear that is just the way he handles life. Talking to Oasis exactly a week after his being voted off the show, he was still upbeat and engaged after days of a rigorous publicity schedule. In fact, he laughed so freely and often during our interview, I just removed the (laughs) marks from the transcript, because without the audio or knowing his take on life, they actually came across as excessive. But on the phone, they were playful and addictive, and really did help paint a picture of his great outlook on life. Bill, the director at dumpster rental, recently spoke with Jeff about his life on and off the show:

Kinsey Sicks "Oy Vey In a Manger" review

By Jeff Walsh

In the grand tradition of Christmas music being sung by Jewish people (See: Barbra Streisand, Neil Diamond, and almost every CD in the holiday section of your store), The Kinsey Sicks deliver their entry with "Oy Vey In A Manger: Christmas Carols and Other Jewish Music."

The Kinseys (half Jewish, half Shiksa) live album of holiday cheer may not be for everyone. If Christmas is an important religious holiday, then "A Lay In A Manger" might be a turn-off for some. (Of course, how people can claim it as an important religious holiday while adding Santa to the mix is a topic for headier magazines than this).

Kinsey Sicks 'I Wanna Be A Republican' review

By Jeff Walsh

"I Wanna Be A Republican" finds The Kinsey Sicks at the top of their game. This filmed concert (now playing festivals, but coming to DVD in 2007) brings their talent to an even wider audience.

The premise of the show is that the Kinseys are hosting a Republican fundraiser, stalling for time until President Bush arrives. Like every Kinsey show, it doesn't settle for the easy targets and skewers everyone by the end of the show.

Anyone who initially dismisses a show by "singing drag queens" is in for a surprise. The entire set-up of the show as a GOP fundraiser gives the material a great platform. In their opening number, "I Wanna Be A Republican," they sing:

Contest: Win a Kinsey Sicks CD!

Yes, one of the new features on Oasis is contests!

Our first contest is for your very own copy of The Kinsey Sicks' Oy Vey In A Manger: Christmas Carols and Other Jewish Music.

Accordng to the Kinseys' web site: "This all-live soundtrack recording of the Kinseys' eponymous holiday show contains 24 tracks for both Jews and Gentiles to abhor, including seasonal favorites such as "God Bless Ye Femmy Lesbians," "'Tis the Season to Drink Stoli," "A Lay in a Manger" and the soon-to-be-classic of cannibalism, "Soylent Night." This CD captures better than any other the fun and the fear of a live Kinsey Sicks performance. You can practically see the stubble sprouting under sweaty pancake make-up and feel the stampede of audience members begging for refunds!"

Jeff Manabat of the Kinsey Sicks Interview

By Jeff Walsh

The Kinsey Sicks have been part of my life in San Francisco for as long as I can remember. But, these days, this dragapella beauty shop quartet is spreading its music and message (and STDs, in the case of Rachel) throughout North America as a constantly touring group. The group was first profiled in Oasis back in November of 1999, and have never stopped coming up with hilarious shows, outlandish improv, and "Oh no, they didn't!" moments.

2007 will see the DVD release of their first-ever concert film "I Wanna Be A Republican" (currently playing festivals and seeking a distributor) as well as an episodic reality show, "Almost Infamous," documenting their journey to debuting a show in Las Vegas. The group consists of four members: Ben Schatz as the slutty Rachel, Irwin Keller as the lesbolicious neatfreak Winnie, Chris Dilley as the vapid vampy Trampolina, and Jeff Manabat as the glamorous (and easy) Trixie.

Welcome to the new Oasis Magazine!

To celebrate our 11th Anniversary online, we are expanding in a big way.

In the next few days, there will now be two major changes:

Oasis Magazine (www.oasismag.com) which will change to feature interviews with openly queer novelists, musicians, actors, comics and role models, as well as reviews of DVDs, movies, books, and music of interest to our audience.

Jim Fall Interview

By Jeff Walsh

When I decided to relaunch Oasis as a magazine again, one of the things I did was to look back and review the list of people we had featured in the past. Just doing that became a sort of fun exercise in seeing what some of those same people were up to these days.

When I saw the interview with Jim Fall, director of Trick (one of my favorite gay movies of all time), I quickly jumped over to IMDB to see what he's been doing lately. I knew about the Lizzie McGuire Movie, but above that was an entry called "Wedding Wars." A bit of poking around, and it seemed that his newest movie was happening just in time for our relaunch. Wedding Wars (see my review) features John Stamos as a wedding photographer who causes a national movement of gay people refusing to go to work, when confronted with the injustice surrounding gay marriage. But instead of a hectoring, political treatise that would preach to the converted, fail to sway the undecided, and not interest the red states, Fall humanizes the issue with a fun, genuine story that humanizes both sides of the issue. The movie plays for laughs and emotional resonance, while advancing the gay marriage debate in a positive way.

'Wedding Wars' Review

By Jeff Walsh

"Wedding Wars" (airing Monday, December 11, 9 p.m. ET/PT, on A&E) is the story of two brothers. Shel is a gay party planner hired to plan his brother Ben's wedding. Ben is marrying the daughter of the Governor of Maine. It's an election year, and the governor ends up going on the record that he opposed gay marriage, which offends Shel. Shel goes on strike and causes a nationwide movement of gays who refuse to go to work.

OK, I'll go on the record right up front that it isn't the most realistic movie, if you're looking for politics. But, that said, if someone like me, living in the Castro in San Francisco, watched this and thought it really hit the mark... then people that really need to see it would hate it completely.

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