Pop Culture Trends I’m So Over

Hi everyone! Let’s begin 2019 with a rant, shall we? I’ve been noticing some patterns in various areas of popular culture and, boy, do I have some thoughts. Some of you may disagree with me while others may agree completely. Either way, I’d like to hear your opinions as well.

Disney Remakes: I get why the live action-remakes of Disney movies are being made but just because we can doesn’t mean we should. It’s not like any of these movies, like The Lion King or Aladdin, are outdated necessarily. I’m pretty sure a child of today can watch the original movies and appreciate them. I don’t need flashy special effects or new songs. Just leave my childhood alone please.

Movie to Musical Adaptations: If you’re a musical theater fan, then you can understand this one. The next musical season is going to be flooded with musical adaptations of movies like Mrs. Doubtfire and The Notebook. Again, I see the market and the reason for this but there are sooooo many to the point that any original musicals or revivals are going to get absolutely buried. I’m not saying I think these musicals are going to be bad. I’m just saying that the originality factor has gone out the door and I blame Mean Girls (even though I do love the musical adaptation).

“Trendy” Horror Movies: You’ve got to stay hip with the kids, right? So that means making technology the center of your horror movie. I’m going to included Internet urban legends (i.e Slenderman) into this category. It’s honestly just so cheesy. It never turns out meaningful. This whole “what if your phone is possessed?” thing feels like it’s written by parents who are tired of their kids being on their phones.

Overly Dramatic Teen Shows/Movies: I’m specifically calling out “Riverdale” for this one because it started the trend. There’s a fine line between escapism and just being unrealistic. Netflix also recently had an influx of teen-centric movies that just strike me as being way too dramatic for the wrong reasons. I understand that I am not the target audience but I would still like to appreciate shows like this. Back in my day, you got some vampires and that was enough. (Also, to anyone who watches Riverdale, how do you classify the show? Is it supernatural? Is it horror? Is it a drama? I don’t get it). (Please read this in an old man voice).

Gender Swapped Remakes: Obviously, we need more female led movies but simply remaking a movie but with a woman instead of a man is just soooo lazy. There’s so much material out there with female leads that could be adapted to the screen and that should be adapted to the screen. There’s also probably plenty of people with completely original ideas out there. Though this trend is starting to die down, I’m afraid it’s not going to stay down.

Favorites of 2018

Hi everyone! Now that Christmas has passed and I have a little bit of time off, I thought that I would share my favorite things of 2018. (Note: Some of these didn’t premier in 2018 but I discovered them in 2018 so that’s why they are included on the list)

Favorite Books of 2018 

  • Circe by Madeline Miller
  • The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin
  • Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman
  • Vicious by VE Schwab
  • Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
  • Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel
  • The Exorcist by William Peter Blatty
  • The Poe Shadow by Matthew Pearl
  • Bonfire by Krysten Ritter

Favorite Movies of 2018

  • Black Panther
  • Avengers: Infinity War
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp
  • Deadpool 2
  • Venom
  • Crazy Rich Asians
  • Mary Poppins Returns
  • Aquaman

Favorite Music of 2018

  • God Save Our Young Blood by BORNS feat. Lana Del Rey (song)
  • To Imagine – EP by The Neighbourhood
  • M A N I A by Fall Out Boy (album)
  • Sick Boy by The Chainsmokers (song)
  • Sober Up by AJR (song)
  • Black Panther: The Album by Kendrick Lamar
  • Nation of Two by Vance Joy (album)
  • White Noise by PVRIS (album)
  • The Neighbourhood by The Neighborhood (album)
  • Found/Tonight by Ben Platt feat. Lin- Manuel Miranda (song)
  • Expectations by Hayley Kiyoko (album)
  • My Dear Melancholy by The Weekend (EP)
  • No Roots by Alice Merton (song)
  • Paper Love by Allie X (song)
  • don’t smile at me by Billie Eilish (album)
  • Tranquility Base Hotel and Casino by Arctic Monkeys (album)
  • Love is Dead by CHVRCHES (album)
  • so sad so sexy by Lykke Li (album)
  • Holy by King Princess (song)
  • Pray for the Wicked by Panic! At the Disco (album)
  • High as Hope by Florence + the Machine (album)
  • Love Monster by Amy Shark (album)
  • Take Me to the Disco by Meg Myers (album)
  • The Pines by Roses and Revolutions (song)
  • talk is overrated by Jeremy Zucker (song)
  • Nina Cried Power – EP by Hozier
  • Venice Bitch by Lana Del Rey (song)
  • Outsiders by Au/Ra (EP)
  • Trench by Twenty One Pilots (album)
  • Delta by Mumford and Sons (album)
  • Cheering For Me Now by John Kander feat Lin-Manuel Miranda (song)

Favorite TV Show of 2018

  • Supernatural, Season 14
  • Gotham, Season 5
  • John Mulaney: Kid Gorgeous at Radio City
  • The Flash, Season 5
  • Arrow, Season 7
  • Supergirl, Season 4
  • Legends of Tomorrow, Season 4
  • Luke Cage, Season 2
  • Black Lightning, Season 2
  • Daredevil, Season 3
  • Iron Fist, Season 2
  • Queer Eye, Seasons 1 and 2
  • Jessica Jones, Season 2
  • Doctor Who, Series 11
  • The Walking Dead, Season 9

Current Favorites: Music Edition (aka What’s On My Writing Playlist?)

Hello everyone! I’m really glad a lot of you enjoyed my review of Children of Blood and Bone. I’m actually still in the process of finishing it and, once I’m done, I’m going to work on reading V.E. Schwab’s Vicious. In between all of that, I’m also working on my writing. I’ve finally settled on an idea and committed to it. I’m feeling pretty confident so I might give you all updated in the future. In the meanwhile, I decided to do another Current Favorites but about some of my favorite musical artists. My taste in music has a pretty large range but I do mostly stick to indie and alt-rock. I have to have music playing while I’m writing in order to focus. I’ll leave links to some of my favorite songs by these artists if you are interested.

I’m going to stop my list there before I just end up giving you all my entire Spotify playlist. I hope that you check out some of this music. I always appreciate when you all take an interest in my opinions. Feel free to leave me some suggestions in the comments.

 

A Few of My Favorite Musicals

Hi everyone! I just finished my Harry Potter re-read and, alas, a new book did not magically appear before me. Rather than dwell on that, I decided to talk about another passion of mine: theatre. I have been involved in theatre since I was very young. I did musicals with a summer theatre group until I was in middle school. Once I got into high school, I immediately became involved in drama club and it was what made those four years stand out. I did a little bit of acting but then went to working the stage crew. Eventually, I became a student director. When I graduated, I debated doing a minor in theatre but decided against it. That, however, doesn’t mean that my passion for theatre has stopped. I decided to share with you some of my favorite musicals and maybe I’ll do a post about my favorite plays later.

hamilton

“Hamilton: An American Musical” by Lin-Manuel Miranda: Call me basic but I absolutely adore this musical with all my heart and soul. It is so well-written and you feel as though you learn something new every time you listen to it. “Hamilton” really brought me back to Broadway after I was starting to fall out of love with it. It’s fun, inspirational, unique, and heart-warming. I never fail to get excited once it pops up on my playlist.

the great comet of 1812

“Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812” by Dave Malloy: This is a good musical for you book lovers out there. It is based off of only 70 pages of War and Peace but it still captures so much emotion. With Josh Groban and Denee Benton as the titular characters, they help bring the story so much life along with the rest of the incredibly talented cast. The music is a great blend of modern pop music and classical music, dubbed “popera.” I highly recommend this energetic and engaging musical.

rent

“RENT” by Jonathan Larson: Again, you can call me basic but this musical helped me fall in love with Broadway. It has such a diverse cast of characters and some of the most iconic songs known to theatre geeks. I could recognize the first note of “Seasons of Love” from 100 miles away. This musical also never fails to make me tear up when I watch it.

sideshow

“Side Show” by Bill Russell and Henry Keiger: I saw this one about two years ago when my college put it on. I was required to go for my Art of Theatre class. I’ve always had a fascination for the “freak shows” of the past so I was interested. This particular musical is based on the lives of Violet and Daisy Hilton, who were conjoined at the hip. The musical didn’t initially do well when it was on Broadway as it is kind of controversial. Regardless, it is still a great musical that has only recently been revived. If you liked “The Greatest Showman,” then I recommend you check out “Side Show.”

dear evan hansen

“Dear Evan Hansen” by Pasek and Paul: As someone who has been dealing with anxiety and panic attacks, I felt a pull towards this musical when I first heard “Waving Through a Window.” Though it deals with heavy subjects, this musical has a very uplifting message that anyone can relate to. Ben Platt is absolutely brilliant in his role as Evan Hansen. “Dear Evan Hansen” embraces the age of social media and the teens who rely on it in their lives.

heathers

“Heathers: The Musical” by Laurence O’Keefe and Kevin Murphy: I have never been a fan of musicals that are adaptation but “Heathers” changed my mind. I ended up listening to the music before I even saw the iconic movie that the musical is based on. It is an incredibly quotable musical with attitude and depth that you wouldn’t expect. I now love the movie and the musical. If you love the 80s, then this one is for you.

phantom of the opera

“The Phantom of the Opera” by Andrew Lloyd Webber: This is yet another testament to some of my basic tastes but, you have to admit, “The Phantom of the Opera” has certainly held up over the years. I saw the movie for the first time and I was blown away by the drama of it all. I still want to read the original novel by Gaston Leroux one day. In the meanwhile, I will still struggle to hit Christine’s high notes in the titular song.

 

My Favorites of 2017

Hello all! So my finals weeks has ended and I will be home tomorrow. Overall, it felt like a successful week, even though it felt as though Kent State was out to get me with my finals schedule. Regardless, I am feeling incredibly relieved and decided to celebrate some of the ups I experienced in 2017. I won’t just be sharing books but I will also be tell you about my favorite movies, songs, podcasts, and even some of my favorite memories of this year. I hope you enjoy.

Favorite Books: 

  • The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
  • Artemis by Andy Weir
  • Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
  • The Sun and Her Flowers by Rupi Kaur
  • The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
  • The Shining by Stephen King
  • Postcards from the Edge by Carrie Fisher

Favorite Movies: 

  • Wonder Woman
  • Thor: Ragnarok
  • Spiderman: Homecoming
  • Baby Driver
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
  • Logan
  • Beauty and the Beast (2017)
  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi (I technically haven’t seen it yet but I know I’m going to love it)

Favorite TV Shows: 

  • Stranger Things: Season 2
  • Marvel’s The Defenders: Season 1
  • Gotham: Season 4
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: Season 1
  • Crisis on Earth X (Second Crossover between Supergirl, Flash, Arrow, and Legends of Tomorrow. I love all of these shows so I’m just listing the crossover)
  • Supernatural: Season 13
  • Lucifer: Season 3

Favorite Albums/Songs: 

  • “Zombies on Broadway,” Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness (album)
  • Human by Rag n’ Bone Man (song)
  • “+” Ed Sheeran (album)
  • “After Laughter,” Paramore (album)
  • “One More Light,” Linkin Park (album)
  • New Rules by Dua Lipa (song)
  • “Hopeless Fountain Kingdom” Halsey (album)
  • Wolves by Rise Against (song)
  • “Lust for Life,” Lana Del Rey (album)
  • “Evolve,” Imagine Dragons (album)
  • “Melodrama,” Lorde (album)
  • Darkside by Ty Dolla $ign, Future, Kiiara (song)
  • Drive You Mad by Amy Shark (song)
  • Find Me by Sigma feat. Birdie
  • Hold Me Tight or Don’t by Fall Out Boy (song)
  • World Gone Mad by Bastille (song)

Favorite Podcasts: 

  • Alice Isn’t Dead
  • Small Town Murder
  • The Hilarious World of Depression
  • Lore
  • Steal the Stars

Favorite Classes I Took This Semester: 

  • Colloquium: Roman Decadence
  • Literature for Young Adults
  • British Literature from 1800-1900
  • Cicero

Favorite Moments/Milestones: 

  • Turning 21
  • Getting my Driver’s License
  • Having my First Internship Interview
  • Going to Kent’s Potter Fest
  • Starting this Blog

That’s all I have for 2017. Let’s hope to making even more good memories in 2018.

Ten Book Related Songs Tag

Hi everyone! Sorry I haven’t posted anything in a while. I’ve been busy and also I haven’t really read anything new but I hope to post something new. I saw this tag on Julie Davide’s blog so make sure to check out her site. Now, I will share with you my favorite songs based on books with links if you want to listen to them as well.

“Over the Love” By Florence and the Machine from The Great Gatsby (dir. Baz Luhrmann)

While Lana Del Rey’s song “Young and Beautiful” is a really beautiful song, this one is also a really poignant song. I absolutely love Florence and the Machine as well. The Great Gatsby is also one of my favorite books.

“I See Fire” by Ed Sheeran from The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien (dir. Peter Jackson)

I am a huge Ed Sheeran fan so I was really geeked when he did a song for the album for the movie adaptation for The Hobbit. 

“As You Wish” by Alesana based on The Princess Bride by William Goldman

The movie adaptation of The Princess Bride is easily one of the most iconic movies. Any fan of the book or the movie will appreciate this duet. Alesana also has done other literary themed songs that are based off of Dante’s Inferno and Edgar Allan Poe’s stories so I definitely recommend look at their other music.

“Oxford Comma” by Vampire Weekend from the album “Vampire Weekend”

I think you writers and grammar nerds will get a kick out of this song. The chorus is pretty hilarious as it begins out with the honest line, “Who gives a fuck about the Oxford comma?”

“White Blank Page” by Mumford and Sons from the album Sigh No More 

I don’t know about the rest of you but I really loved Mumford and Sons when they first came out with their banjo-infused sound. This one is particularly angst-filled and I think it works well for writers, who are a melodramatic bunch. (Bonus points for me because I happened to find a video of them performing this song in a bookstore).

“The Writer” by Ellie Goulding from the album Lights

I know that this one is a cover of another song but I love Ellie Goulding’s take on it. It’s a very whimsical and romantic song. We could all use a little bit of whimsy and romance on occasion.

“Shakespeare” by Fink from the album Hard Believer

This is another good angst-ridden song about struggling to learn Shakespeare as a teenager and just getting nothing from it. As a teen, I could have cared less for Romeo and Juliet.

“Paperback Writer” by The Beatles from the album 1

Let’s get classic with some of The Beatles. This one of my favorite songs and I hope you like it as well.

“Annabel Lee” By Stevie Nicks from the album In Your Dreams

Stevie Nicks took Poe’s poem, “Annabel Lee” and turned it into an awesome acoustic song with a bit of a 1970s vibe. It’s really fantastic.

“Yellow Flicker Beat” by Lorde from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Pt. 1 (dir. Francis Lawrence)

All of the albums that came out for the movie adaptations of The Hunger Games series were really good but I love this one in particular because it’s just so damn empowering. (Also I just really love Lorde).

Those are ten of my favorite bookish songs. I hope the links work well. Also, let me know if you would like another top ten list like this. I love sharing my favorite music as well as my favorite books.