Thursday, May 29, 2008

Viva Hollywood Update: The best man won!

Ever since Viva Hollywood's hunky Berto gamely played gay while simultaneously soothing the nerves of closet-y drama queen Vinci, he's been my favorite to win the challenge. Berto's a real gentleman who possesses true acting skills as well as clever strategy. His nice guy attitude has endeared him to most of the contestants-- especially the ladies-- while allowing him to pass through episode after episode without once being sent to one of the closing duels. About the only bad thing that can be said about him is that he's a bit of a player, flirting with many of the women on the show while purportedly having a girlfriend back home. "What's [she] gonna think when she sees you in bed with those two whores?" guest Perez Hilton asked on one of the last episodes. It should be noted that Hilton pushed Berto's homo-tolerance by the limit by offering to let the other man spank him. (I'll allow this since Hilton pushes my homo-tolerance to the limit sometimes.) But when it came to acting chops, Berto consistently delivered with compelling performances-- especially compared to the frequently amateurish work of his wannabe competitors. In the end, it came down to him, spunky Bronx girl Jenn Pinto, and bitchy blonde Gisel. After a silly final challenge in which the three played each other-- and Gisel's Jenn makeup made her look like a trannie wicked witch-- the judges eliminated Gisel, whose performance was the weakest (and whose antics in the house always demonstrated her whininess and inability to work with others). Jenn and Berto went head to head in a final duel, where Berto finally let loose the beast within. The two were also questioned by past contestants, notably Gisel, who asked Berto if his seeming feelings for her were mere strategy. (He told Hilton it was all part of the game. But he told Gisele they were the real deal. A white lie? Discuss.) In the end, hosts Maria Conchita and Carlos Ponce-- after one last booze-soaked deliberation-- asked Jenn and Berto to open the boxes in front of them. Jenn's contained the Death card, whereas Berto's had the Mask from the show's extremely silly (and brilliant) "Massacre of the Masks" elimination device-- meaning he was the winner. While I wouldn't have minded seeing Berto at whatever bar he worked at in New York, I'm happy for his sake that he won't have to go back to it. Maybe I'll try and learn Spanish so I can watch him on Telemundo. Congrats, Berto!

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