Did you watch House of Versace tonight on Lifetime? Do you feel like you spent the last two hours huffing peroxide fumes and saying “It’s hot! It’s sexy! It’s worrrrking!” to your cat while you made him tiny bias cut dresses out of tinfoil? No? ME NEITHER.
But let’s discuss it anyway. Some real-time thoughts:
1. I do not envy Gina Gershon having to fill Maya Rudolph’s lace-front from the old Donatella sketches on SNL (which are annoyingly hard to find online, except for this). Maya basically played her as a sozzled blond honey badger from hell who ate cocaine for breakfast, Capri Slims for lunch, and go-go boys for dinner, and she was perfection.
2. Oh wait! Gina is not so bad. The wig looks good, very Victoria Gotti with a little extra VO5. And I like the whole Harvey-Fierstein-goes-to-Roma rasp she’s working. More menthols! Also, Enrico Colantoni (Veronica Mars, Just Shoot Me) nails Gianni, looks-wise.
3. These runway shows and photo shoots are kind of janky. Lifetime, I know setpieces are expensive but this is House of Versace, not House of Vinyl Markdowns.
4. Do a bunch of Italian people really sit around eating dinner and talking in Italian-accented English instead of, I don’t know, Italian? (Never mind, I know why. It’s still weird.)
5. Uh oh! Drugs. In fashion?? Scandalo!
6. Poor murdered Gianni. They sort of could have built this one up a little more, no? He’s there, and then he’s in Miami, and then he’s gone. Isn’t a horrible unexpected death-by-random-serial-killer pretty much what dramatic Lifetime-movie arcs are made of? Donatella’s slow-motion fall when she gets the news is good though.
7. More drugs. Not for fun now, for coping. Here comes the spiral.
8. Gianni Butterfly!
9. And now the scene where it all becomes too much. She’s twirling! She’s laughing! She’s smashing into the chandelier! Whoopsies. Say buongiorno to rehab, ‘Tella.
10. Soft-focus lawns, natural-weave pants… Is that a gazebo? Yep, rehab.
11. And, she’s back! “Giving up my heels was harder than giving up cocaine.” That’s our girl.
12. Sobriety, success, forgiveness – it’s cool you guys, she’s not a screaming cokey wildebeest anymore, she’s an accomplished designer in her own right! The foundation of the House of Versace is strong! Its walls are lined in mink and Corinthian leather! Its window treatments are made of one-shouldered gowns! Its legacy shall stand in gold lamé and slutty hemlines forever more!
And yet, I’m underwhelmed. Was this whole thing maybe a little bit boring? Because it’s all based on a real-life story that is so bat crap crazy it should be cake – if cake were made of murder and glamour and drugs and superstars and sequins and hot-blooded Italians throwing things down marble hallways. Huh.
Readers, you tell me – what did you think?