A New Crisis for Britney's Sister?

Watching a career sore. And hearing amid the praise for Day-Lewis: 'Huston. We have a problem.'

It's time to play catchup, kids, so get out your mitts and strap on your vomit bags. First off, did you notice that when the Jamie Lynn Spears pregnancy story broke, the photo of the 16-year-old tartlet on the New York Post cover showed her sporting what looked like a gigantic herpes sore? I'm just sayin'! Even more upsettingly, a Christian publishing company put a parenting book by Britney's mother, Lynne Spears, on hold after the big announcement (that Jamie Lynn was pregnant—not had herpes)! So before that, everything was fine, and Mom was considered a glorious parent who instills profoundly inspiring values in her kids? (Rolls eyes.)

A more substantive mom, Jodie Foster, semi–came out by finally acknowledging her girlfriend in public, blah, blah, blah, but now what? Will she take it back, like Rosie O'Donnell did with "I love you, Kelli!" and then go the other way and burst out with a dykey vengeance that'll lead her to the stage of the Mohegan Sun casino? Will she choose a tasteful magazine to do the obligatory Lance Bass–style cover story for, thereby taking the coyness out of her boi-ness? Will she live up to the line in The Brave One, when the pimp says, "Oh, my God. We got us a super cunt here!"? Here's what I think Jodie will do: absolutely nothing. But it would be nice if a red-carpet interviewer at least asked her to elaborate a little. Do you have the balls, ET?

Meanwhile, Queen Latifah was supposed to reveal that she's getting engaged to her female trainer, according to various wacky websites. But shortly afterwards, Queenie made sure to tell USA Today about all the guys who've desperately wanted her through the years. That doesn't necessarily mean they got her, does it? Come on, ET—ask!

While I'm waiting for that announcement—or any announcement—let's catch up with the even more sexually complicated things happening on Broadway. Is He Dead? is glorified sitcom stuff, but it's been deftly resuscitated from the archives, with impish Norbert Leo Butz—once again playing a con man in disguise—adorably clowning around in pincurls as other characters say things like, "I shall expect your full-on oui-oui by four o'clock!" Did I like it? Wee-wee!

I also said yes-yes to the handsome production of Cymbeline, in which Martha Plimpton and Michael Cerveris give highly developed star performances. But I was bothered by Jonathan Cake, who over-leered it up with an irritating speech pattern. (Speak slowly and emphatically, then rush a bunch of words, then come to a sudden stop . . . then speak slowly and emphatically . . .) But he looked great in a towel. Let me eat Cake!

You don't need a towel to watch The Little Mermaid—the water is played by Mylar and the fish float by on what looks like a giant revolving salad bowl. And, shockingly, I didn't want to run out for sushi instead. Of course, I may not be the right person to review this kind of thing: I actually enjoyed Mary Poppins, especially when they vogued, and I even found stuff in Tarzan to like besides the leading man's thumping chest and the homo-erectus remarks. But this show—pretty much a female Pinocchio, about an oddball longing to be human, sort of like Mitt Romney—stays entertainingly afloat for at least the first act. (The dull second half, on dry land, needs water thrown on it.) And between the king's abs and the prince's tightly clothed butt, there's a lot of eye candy for the gays—not to mention the fact that Flotsam and Jetsam come off like screaming queens, the gay has crabs (I mean, the crab seems gay), and Ursula vamps like Bette Midler at the Continental Baths with extra tentacles. Sadly, Flounder was out the night I saw it—maybe he had a haddock—but his understudy didn't flounder at all.

Off-Broadway at the Zipper Factory, a vigorous revue called Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad included a song about gefilte fish that culminated with the entire audience rejecting a bite. The show put the whore in hora, trotting out standup, stripteases, two dancing dreidels, and one angry (and wildly out of place) Def Poetry Jam type. The tirelessly brassy MC/organizer, the Goddess Perlman, offered both wisdom ("With JDate, you get dinner. With Craigslist, you get laid") and fashion. (She wore a menorah dress while admonishing, "Be careful what you throw out!")

Talking trash while wearing riches, the city's best drag queens still include Peppermint, Shequida, and Shasta Cola, who rock Barracuda with hot lip synchs and humor; Bianca Del Rio, whose hilarious mouth is saltier than the rocket salad at Ye Waverly Inn (the New Orleans emigré just got a drag MC gig at Harrah's, by the way); and Kitty Hiccups, who does a deadpan but not-dead-yet Eartha Kitt over at the Ritz. Meanwhile, at Don't Tell Mama—where my waitress doubled as the lighting lady—the fearless Mimi Imfurst mounted A Very Mary Christmas, which had Mimi as the Virgin Mary performing an unlikely comeback cabaret act that involved Heather Mills jokes ("She works at IHOP") and retooled pop hits ("Oh, what a night . . . late December in 1 B.C. . . .") Mary's latest CD? It's available at the Virgin Megastore.

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