After gay pay channel Q-TV collapsed, Jack E. Jett, host of the network's most popular show Queer Edge, attempted to bring his program to other channels. He met with the suits at Logo, Bravo, Here, E! and a host of other lesser known channels. He was rejected by all of them.
Most hacks would have given up their TV hosting dreams and applied for their real estate license or signed up for the refrigeration and air conditioning course at Apex Tech. Not Jack. The crazy whack-job decided if no network would take him, he'd launch his own network. He met with Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey, the guys behind hit indie films The Eyes of Tammy Faye and Party Monster, who enlisted Jett in their latest project WorldOfWonder.net, an internet TV network launching this fall. With a handshake, FU-TV was born.
Contrary to popular belief, the FU is not directed to gay channels Logo and Here. 'The FU in FU-TV is a statement to the networks that have bowed down to religious groups, that have censored programs because they may have portrayed drugs in positive light, to the White House for withholding information about the existence or non-existence of weapons of mass destruction and at the same time filtering what we can see and hear,' ranted Jett in a press conference announcing the new network. 'We can not see Janet Jackson's tit, but Colin Powell can stand before a nation and lie, a lie that ends up killing tens of thousands of innocent civilians. George Bush, Sr. is able to travel around the world speaking for companies at over $100,000 a pop and at the same time his pathetic excuse for a son is making laws that effect what we see and hear.'
Could this be the end of civilized television? We sat down with Jett to learn more.
Why did the major—and even minor—
networks reject Queer Edge?
The Queer Edge is too weird for American TV. The show is a
celebration of people who march to a different xylophone.
Some of the stars that have appeared on the show are not so shabby. Sandra Bernhard, Alan Cumming, Kim Coles, Lucy Lawless…
Yes, and also pop subculture talents like Matt Trample ( a dude who likes to be trampled on by women ) , Rocky ( who strips from a tuxedo to jock strap while on a pogo stick ) , Bridget The Midget ( a porn star/rock star/mother ) , Billy The Mime ( most twisted mime in the world ) , Fakir Musafar ( the Father of body modification, and Kay Sedia ( drag queen/top-selling Tupperware salesperson ) . These are incredible talents with amazing stories to tell whose art and voice have been quieted by the right wing conservative media.
You're the modern day freak show ringmaster. You're this millennium's Barnum and Bailey.
I guess you could say that. My audience extends beyond the circus tent. The beauty of broadband internet is that viewers can watch the show in Hong Kong or even Vatican City. People will be able to view some amazing visuals, video shorts, underground films, and the new hit series, ROBOSHITHEAD.
Let's get honest. In your opinion, are the gay networks ( Logo and Here ) giving viewers what they want to see?
The question is rather subjective and if I were up to playing the game, I would answer it like this. It is an exciting time to be gay in America as we celebrate our diversity with our own television networks. However, I am over playing the game. The Viacomization of gay is clearly evident when you watch five minutes of LOGO. As a viewer, I find the programs mundane. While playing it safe is good for preventing HIV infection, it is rather boring on TV. I am not sure whose gay lifestyle they are reflective of, but it is not mine, or anyone I know. However, they have the power and own enough gay real estate to ensure that the programs will only be complimented in the press.
FU-TV launches on WorldofWonder.net this fall. For more information on Jack E. Jett, visit his website at www.jackejett.com .
Tune in next week for part two of this interview.