Rock of Love Bus- Episode 1, “Every Rose Has Its Porn”

“If you don’t remember it, it didn’t happen.” – Cleavageface #17

What do you say about the epic mountain of cleavage that is the Rock of Love saga? 

I’ll begin by saying that Rock of Love, to me, exists as a cultural petrie dish containing an incredibly specific, endlessly frustrating, but eternally fascinating slice of our society. These are not the girls you see everyday. These are not the girls you see in the movies. These are not even the girls you see on The Real World.

These are the girls you see on TV.

They do not exist anywhere else.

(P.S: High five and a hug for ANYONE who can get all the way through that awkward slideshow.)

So Bret Michaels…

…will be referred to as Hunky Uncy Bret from now on. 

Where to begin?

Okay. There’s a porn scene floating around the interweb where a guy (sporting an obnoxious member) is running a game show where the winner gets to bone him. It’s played comically, tongue-in-cheek. If there’s one thing I love about porn-at-large it’s their refusal to take themselves seriously.

Now, Rock of Love slowly circled the gates of PornLand in the first season, with Hunky Uncy Bret gushing about his desire for a soulful, spiritual connection while soliciting blowjobs at every turn. The show’s massive success, coupled with Bret’s unlikely emergence as a somehow-still-sexy idol, made for a second season whose ads played up the slutdom, going so far as to insert a digitally enhanced member for our humble hero. Bret’s pleas for love and transcendence came off all the more hollow as blowjobs became creepily mandatory. Choosing the less promiscuous of the two babes at the end did little to change the show’s image.

In tonight’s season premiere, the word “love” (outside of the title) is not mentioned once. Bret talks about finding the right woman for his life (with no emphasis on “right”) and someone he can come home to, but by now even he has abandoned the ridiculous idea that love is any part of this equation.

Basically, to bring it back around, Hunky Uncy Bret Michaels has become that Porno Game Show Host. These women are competing for sole ownership of Bret’s cock. He is there to facilitate, to move things along, to engage in a little bit of chit-chat.

And ya know what? Good for him.


One day, some time back, I found out some great news. That night, I went to a party. It was a great party. Friends, laughs, drinks were all in abundance, consumed copiously by yours truly. In the midst of this, I met a young lady. Young lady liked me. Young lady took me to her home. In some swirling haze, our hands like snakes, we listened to Tom Waits and made out for what felt like hours. She changes. She’s wearing an Eraserhead t-shirt.

I don’t know what turned me on more. Her, or her Eraserhead t-shirt.

I told her, “You’re beautiful.” And I meant it. In that moment, I meant it.

She said, “Don’t say things you won’t mean tomorrow.”

I told her, “We should hang out. We should watch movies.” I meant it.

She said, “Don’t say things you won’t mean tomorrow.”

And I didn’t get it. Tom Waits crooning about closing time in my ears, all I could do was think about how we would share this singular moment again and again. I could love this girl, I thought. I really could.

The next day I went to the movies with some friends. She was there with her friends.

And we both knew.

We barely said a word to each other again.

The central conceit of any of these dating shows (a conceit which has pervaded our society), is that love at first sight (or even love in first week) is a tangible reality. These shows coast on our country’s idealism, on our tired insistence  that love conquers all. And us cynical SOB’s watch and we laugh because we’ve experienced what Elliot Smith so mournfully sang about: The Morning After, and all the while we’re clinging to or rejecting the explosion of emotion the previous night’s intoxication brought with it. In the season 2 finale, when Uncy Bret sheds tears at the final elimination and the world scoffs, I believed every second of it. 

But he knows better. In the end, we all know better.

That’s not love. Not that love is an answer, or a formula, or an endpoint of any kind.

Bottom line: Love is Earned. Not won.

It’s all about what Nietzsche called the Dionysian. Unlike the Appolonian, which emphasizes creation, order and clarity, the Dionysian revels in intoxication, sexual license and destruction. There is no logic when you’re in the Dionysian; there is only the joy of the moment, regardless of how destructive you know it really is. And of course, no one can live there forever. Not even Bret Michaels!

What we’re all sobbing about when we have to choose between two busty blondes, it’s simply the Greek God of sex, drugs and rock n’ roll invading us like the Holy Spirit. And to call that love? Well, I guess that’s some form of idolatry.

So thank you Hunky Uncy Bret for never uttering (outside the title) the word “Love.” Thank you Hunky Uncy Bret for playing up the sluttiness, for not pretending you have no intentions of having sick, nasty old-man Michaels intercourse with these ladies.

Rock of Love Bus is the same ‘ol bullshit. But at least its got respect for the sublime.

Now, Bret said if he doesn’t find “it” this time around, he’s quitting. Bret, homey, I’m with you. Quit while you’re ahead.

From the ether:

  • I have a theory that Nikki (aka DJ Lady Tribe) is not real.

Nikki, Rock of Love

  • She doesn’t speak. She grunts, bellows and cackles. She vomit-barks. My theory is that she is either a robot invented by an evil, twisted, mad science douche, or she is a beyond brilliant performance artist (along the lines of Marina Abramovic) who immersed herself so deeply into the role of Nikki after subjecting herself to every form of plastic surgery that she has lost all semblance of self. We’ll never find out, though. She was voted off, and while I couldn’t believe the producers would get rid of such a specimen, she was obviously on heavy, heavy scrips or some shit. Hellllo, liability.
  • When people describe themselves as “deep” I always cringe a little. Being “deep” is like being attractive or talented: it’s not your call to make.
  • I like the Oompa Loompa music during scenes the producers deem comic.
  • Big John: “It’s just like a puzzle. Big pieces on the bottom, small pieces on top.” That’s not a puzzle, BJ. That’s a pyramid.
  • Was Bret lip-synching? PLEASE say yes.
  • I love how the girl who closest resembles of an everyday member of American society (Beverly) is immediately the one “othered” in this environment.
  • No one under a C-cup. And I’m being generous. If they’re C’s, they’re big C’s. All girls, unless they somehow make their presence known in a positive way (like Beverly), will be referred to as Cleavageface.
  • Watching the girls on the pink bus simply exist reminded me of a goat chasing the teet of a baby bottle across a linoleum floor (see the “Grass Valley Greg” sketch of Mr. Show for a visual).
  • Why does Bret keep wearing shirts with his name on them? He did this when he was hosting a Vh1 countdown, too. After 22 years in the business you’d think he’d of learned his lesson by now.
  • Every time Bret kisses one of these things I wonder what it could possibly taste like. My current guess: “burnt plastic.”
  • Coming this season on Rock of Love Bus: Bitches be passed out on speedbumps, yo. 

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3 Responses to “Rock of Love Bus- Episode 1, “Every Rose Has Its Porn””

  1. Francie Says:

    You owe me a high-five, a hug AND a strong drink, my friend.

    “burnt plastic” killed me.

  2. Boots Says:

    Seriously though…how is she standing up? Unless that is a steel corset and those things are filled with helium she is defying the laws of gravity!

  3. Grabo Says:

    I couldn’t make it through the slideshow.

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