By Danny McCarthy, Staff Writer
Hello! Welcome to the Countdown, where we discuss some of the things that happened this week in Pop Culture! Are you excited? Of course you are! Let’s get down to business!
I can’t believe that this is really happening. The photo was originally taken at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia. The original photo shows Prince George with dark eyes, pale cheeks and brown hair, but his Us Weeklydoppelganger blushed on the cover with rosy cheeks, and lighter eyes and hair. I know that airbrushing is not uncommon, but I feel like if anyone could get away without some tweaking, it would be a baby.
The music video for Katy Perry’s song “Birthday” was released this week, and it was … interesting. The video follows Perry as she dresses up like five distinctive characters and proceeds to ruin five separate birthday parties. She grinds up on geriatric men, eats mice and causes a car accident. But it’s all good, because in the end she revealed her true identity and everyone went cray-cray! The song definitely takes a different direction from Perry’s usual “cupcakes and sparkles” persona. The star, who recently revealed that she’s on Tinder, showed her pranking side in this music video, and it wasn’t the worst.
Aww! I love it when cool celebrities have kids together; it means that I have more cool celebrities to look forward to in the future! Sudeikis and Wilde, who started dating in 2011 and got engaged in January 2013, welcomed their first child together, Otis Alexander, this week. Wilde revealed her due date on the Golden Globes red carpet, telling Ryan Seacrest, “May the fourth be with you!” Well, it looks like baby Otis isn’t a huge Star Wars fan, because he came early! Congratulations to the whole Sudeikis-Wilde family and hello to baby Otis!
3. One Direction releases the “You and I” music video:
Another music video this week (and spoiler alert, we’re not finished). One Direction’s “You and I” music video, from their album Midnight Memories, came out and it has already stirred up some controversy. I didn’t realize at first, due to being mesmerized by Liam’s cool new beard and Louis’ gross, old-man hair, but the video is strikingly similar to Clubfoot’s “Everything You Wanted.” The use of digital effects and overall feel of the two music videos are very similar. While no one has filed for any sort of creative infringement lawsuits, Clubfoot is asking fans to tweet at One Direction with #nodirection to bring the issue to 1D’s attention. What do you think? Too similar or just too much drama?
2. Beyoncé releases the “Pretty Hurts” music video to the world:
So this might not be news if you’ve already bought the classic album, but if you haven’t, bask in the glory of “Pretty Hurts,” the first song off Beyoncé’s titular album. And since it’s Beyoncé, we think any news of hers is breaking news. The video is visually stunning and thematically powerful. It shows the ups and downs of judging yourself based off looks, and Beyoncé, who is poked, prodded and evaluated throughout the entire video, is having none of it. Beyoncé released the video in conjunction to her appearance on this year’s cover of TIME for the issue on the most influential people in the world. With the release, Beyoncé is asking all of us to reconsider what we call “pretty,” and what the word should really mean. Beyoncé, as always, you are my queen. Thank you.
The NBC hit “Parks and Recreation” wrapped up its sixth season, and it was a majestic whirlwind of emotions. Now, this one is a major spoiler alert, so don’t read any further if you haven’t watched the episode! The last few episodes of the sixth season have been impressive enough: Leslie is revealed to be pregnant with triplets, the Unity Concert is drawing closer, and Leslie’s deadline to make a decision about leaving Pawnee for a new job inches closer. In the finale, a lot of these questions are answered, and it threw me through a loop. The Unity Concert is a success (as we knew it would be), and Leslie manages to get the National Parks Service job and stay in Pawnee (and we knew she should) but then there’s a three year TIME JUMP ! That’s right! The seventh season of “Parks and Rec” will take place three years into the future, skipping over the bogging-down “Leslie pregnancy” story line and showing Leslie like she always has been: kicking ass, taking names and balancing everything. I cannot wait for the new season to start.
Three music videos, a season finale, a little prince and a little baby! Wow, what a week it’s been! I hope you had fun reading the Countdown this week, and I hope you watch all the videos and episodes I’ve talked about. Anyway, I better get going. So much to do (aka Netflix to watch), so little time. Goodbye!
By Danny McCarthy, Staff Writer
Hey there! How was your week? Did you do that thing? You didn’t? I can’t believe you, this is so typical. You always overcommit and then never fulfill anything. Well, I guess there is one thing you can do to redeem yourself. You can keep reading and find out what happened this week in pop culture!
Emma Stone loves the Spice Girls, and I love that Emma Stone loves the Spice Girls. In fact, it’s such common knowledge that when Emma appeared on “The Graham Norton Show,” the host couldn’t help but prank her. Although the Spice Girls have been mentioned quite a lot on the “Amazing Spider-Man 2” press tour, like when she told Jimmy Kimmel she could forge all their signatures, Stone hasn’t met one in the flesh. “As you know Stone, it’s very rare for more than one Spice Girl to appear together for any reason at all,” teased Norton to the flair of a drum roll. “So, they’re not here.” And safe to say, Stone was heartbroken.
The trailer for the film adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s psychological thriller “Gone Girl” hit the internet this week. Now, I watched the trailer, and found myself wanting more. Obviously the trailer can’t give away the plot twists that gave “Gone Girl” its cult-ish, fervent following, but I still felt like it didn’t pack a punch in the way it needed to. What do you think? How do you set up the movie trailer for a psychological thriller without revealing the big twist? Are you going to see “Gone Girl”? Can we go together? (Disclaimer, I talk throughout movies).
Sometimes, Taylor Swift amazes even cynical old me. The Red singer showed up at the wedding shower of longtime fan Gena Gabrielle in Ohio. Gabrielle mailed Swift an invitation to her wedding as a long shot. Swift couldn’t make the wedding, but that didn’t stop her from stopping by the shower. Gabrielle had no idea, and I can’t imagine the shock and happiness the bride-to-be was feeling when her favorite singer walked in with presents. Swift has been stopping by to visit fans a lot recently. In March, she visited 17-year-old Shelby Huff, who has cancer. Swift spent 4.5 hours at the Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City and 20 minutes with Huff. Thank you, Swift, for being a grade-A good person. I appreciate it.
Vice President Joe Biden has joined Instagram and immediately slayed all the competition. His first picture was effortlessly artsy, with a pair of Ray-Ban aviators front and center and himself blurred in the background. He also posted a selfie with President Barack Obama, and the world fell to pieces at the awesomeness of the moment. Biden already has almost 120,000 followers on the social media outlet, with no doubt of the number growing. And you know what? I’m not even mad. Rock on, Joe Biden. Rock on.
Lana Del Rey debuted her new song “West Coast” at Coachella this year. The song will be on her upcoming album Ultraviolence, which was announced in December. “West Coast” is the second new original song for Del Rey to release. Her first, “Meet Me in the Pale Moonlight,” has since been taken offline. The new song is expected to debut in the upper half of Billboard’s Hot 100. Lana has been rapidly gaining followers, and her appearance at Coachella and anticipation for her new music whipping people into a frenzy for her.
Miley Cyrus has been hospitalized after a severe allergic reaction to antibiotics. Cyrus has taken to Twitter to express her displeasure over canceling Bangerz shows, but the star has rescheduled some of her canceled shows. The European tour is scheduled to go on as planned, but the U.S. tours are a little more touch and go. Cyrus is trying to keep in good spirits despite being hospitalized, posting tweets, hospital selfies and making jokes. The past month has been tough on Cyrus, and I hope she gets better soon!
Could it be true? According to various sources, Beyoncé and Jay-Z are planning a summer stadium tour! The tour will go from June to August, taking them from Atlanta to San Francisco, with a few stops in Paris next September. Although not officially confirmed, the timing works out: Jay-Z finished his Magna Carta tour in January, and Beyoncé wrapped up her Mrs. Carter tour in March. The summer stadium tour could be the perfect thing to get them back into the tour-game. For the sake of all humanity, I hope this summer tour turns out to be true!
That’s all I’ve got! Tell me down below if I missed anything. What do you think? Will Emma Stone ever meet the Spice Girls? Will Taylor Swift and I become best friends? Will Cyrus ever get better? Will Beyonce and Jay-Z go on tour? Only time will tell!
By Danny McCarthy, Staff Writer
Hey there, terriers! How was your week? Terrierific? Terrierble? I can’t think of a third “terrier” pun, so we’ll end that train of thought there. Spring has most definitely sprung, and I couldn’t be happier. So let’s celebrate quickly because we all know that eventually it will be winter again in Boston, and that thought is terrifying — I guess I did have another “terrier” pun. Nailed it.
Yay! Kesha is back, and I love it. The star has dropped the “$” from her name and seems to be pursuing a more natural vibe. She performed in the Best Fest’s Petty Fest at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles. The performance comes on the heels of her first post-rehab red carpet appearance at the Humane Society Benefit Gala, where she looked healthy and beautiful, glowing in a sparkly dress. Kesha went into rehab seeking treatment for an eating disorder, and ended up staying two months. While a proponent for loving yourself, Kesha found it difficult to practice, and we love her for putting her physical and mental health first. Welcome back, Kesha!
David Letterman, the longest-running late night host in TV history, is ending his 30-year reign in 2015 when his contract expires. The decision is something that he has been discussing with CBS president/CEO Les Moonves, and it’s not entirely unexpected. Last year, Letterman renewed his contract for only one year, leading many to speculate that the end was near. His departure will leave a hole in the heart of television as we say goodbye to this late night staple. There has been no word yet on who will potentially succeed Letterman.
Nicole Polizzi is expecting her second child with fiancé Jionni LaValle. The news came shortly after it was revealed that her best friend, Jenni Farley, is expecting a baby girl with her fiancé Roger. Polizzi and Farley appear on their show “Snooki & JWOWW” together, and always planned to be pregnant together. Snooki didn’t release the knowledge of her pregnancy to the public until her second trimester, but the news was leaked by an undisclosed source to the press. Polizzi is already the mother to Lorenzo Dominic, 19 months, and wanted for her children to be close in age to each other.
It came, we saw, and it conquered our emotions. The finale to the long-running, intensely addicting, wildly popular “How I Met Your Mother” ended on March 31, 2014. Have you recovered yet? The finale was controversial, and if you didn’t like it, you may have a second chance at the ending. The creators of the show, Craig Thomas and Carter Bays, announced that there will be an alternate ending to the series. “We were in the HIMYM edit room, trying to decide between two very different endings,” Bays tweeted, “We chose the ending we chose and we stand by it. But we loved the other version too.” The alternate ending will be released with the DVD set of the show’s last season.
My queen, Lupita Nyong’o, was named the newest face of Lancome, becoming the first black woman to represent the French brand! It’s coming as no surprise that Nyong’o has been tapped to represent the luxury brand: her fashion statements are almost as talked about as her films, and her red carpet style choices have become iconic. Nyong’o has always loved the company, and adores its idea that “beauty should not be dictated, but should instead be an expression of a woman’s freedom to be herself.”
1. Miley Cyrus in Boston:
If Lupita is my queen, then Miley Cyrus is my religion. She came to Boston Wednesday night on her Bangerz tour, and by all accounts, the show was a watershed moment. Miley’s dog Floyd died two days previous to the show and the singer was distraught, taking to Twitter to voice her heartbreaking sadness. However, she promised to “try her best to be her best” for her Boston fans and she did not disappoint. Although the evening was fraught with sadness and a tear-jerking moment when Miley broke down and clutched a massive blow-up version of Floyd, she never ceased in her desire to put on an amazing show. Opinions on Miley are split, but I think we can all agree that her performance Wednesday night showed her strength, bravery and beauty. Miley, I applaud you.
By Danny McCarthy, Staff Writer
Welcome to Monday! It may have been a rainy weekend, but it’s all toasty warm in pop culture land! So kick up your feet and settle in for a while as we talk about everything that you might’ve missed in the last week!
6. Chris Martin & Gwyneth Paltrow selling their London home:
In the aftermath of going public with their split, Gwyneth Paltrow and husband Chris Martin are reportedly selling their $7 million London home. The pair have been working on their marriage for roughly a year, and despite rumors swirling of infidelity on the side of Paltrow, they insist the break-up is amicable. Paltrow also announced that she will be taking time off from Hollywood to be with her children and deal with the effects of the split.
Looks like Selena is being dragged into Justin’s legal mess! The beautiful brunette was served with court papers. She will testify in the lawsuit centering around Bieber’s alleged assault on a paparazzo while on a date with Gomez. However, Gomez could be grilled on more than just that one incident. Possible topics include Bieber’s use of illegal substances and any incidents of violence or anger.
Jupiter Ascending, starring Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum, released a new trailer, and it’s drawing me in! With the scenes of a vast galactic empire and some pretty sick fights — involving a wolfish Tatum — I’m excited for the film to be released in July. The film was directed by the Wachowskis, who brought us the Matrix films. It centers on Jupiter, played by Kunis, who is the next in line for a celestial throne, and the great battle to achieve her birthright. Pretty cool, right?
Zoe Saldana is having one hell of a year! The Star Trek actress will be involved with the “Avatar” sequel, a NBC adaptation of “Rosemary’s Baby,” and now she joins the likes of Blake Lively and Lea Michele as L’Oreal Paris’s newest spokesmodel. Saldana was humbled by the offer, and credits her success to her family’s work ethic. We can’t wait to see the gorgeous L’Oreal pictures featuring the beauty!
If it were possible for the entire world to love Beyoncé more, it would be this moment. At her last show of 132 shows on her Mrs. Carter tour, Beyoncé humbly thanked her fans for giving her a career and lifting her up every time she fell. It is amazing to see a celebrity of Beyoncé’s stature acknowledge the power and special place of the fans in the making of fame. The past year of the tour has been a huge step for Beyoncé: the growth of her daughter Blue Ivy, and the release of her secret fifth album, BEYONCÉ.
1. Emma Watson “Noah” premiere; graduation in May:
Okay, full disclosure: this is my number 1 because I’ve been re-obsessed with the “Harry Potter” series lately and Emma Watson is my British queen. At the “Noah“ premiere, Watson revealed that she is due to graduate from Brown University in May, and she couldn’t be happier! She finished her degree in five years, balancing both the pressures of schoolwork and cinema. Emma says that graduating will free up her time considerably and, after filming her new movie “Regression,” she would love to break out on Broadway. Congrats, Watson!
Okay, so that’s all for this week! If there’s anything I missed, or anything you want to chime in on, feel free to comment down below!
By Danny McCarthy, Staff Writer
Remember when I wrote about men’s fashion? I was so good at that, right? (Just agree with me.) Well, now I’ve decided to foray into the great wilderness that is pop culture, armed with only a dream and access to the Internet. Join me as we count down the top seven things that you might have missed this week in pop culture!
7. “Full House”:
Apparently there is a “Full House” reunion in the works! The iconic television show, which ran from 1987-1995, was almost a religion in my household, and its ongoing popularity has proved that it probably held the same position in the lives of others. According to an interview John Stamos did with CBS News, the project will be “sort of reunion-like, not with the full cast.” So who do you think will be in the Full House reunion? Let us know in the comments below!
My world is coming to a halt because J.K. Rowling, in a new article (in which she was interviewed by Emma Watson — perfection) announced that she isn’t quite certain that Ron and Hermione should have ended up together. The author instead wished that she had put Harry and Hermione together instead. Personally, I can see Hermione and Ron not working out, but Harry and Hermione just seems…weird. Whose team are you on? Ron or Harry?
As per usual, Beyoncé was flawless at the Grammys. Using only a chair, smoke and her own perfection as props, she gave a sultry, strong rendition of “Drunk in Love”, a song from her new self-titled album, BEYONCÉ. Her husband, rapper Jay-Z, joined the performer later in the song. Despite the song being censored live, parents are in an uproar about the duet, citing it to be a little too risqué for children. What do you think? Was Beyoncé’s dance too sexy for the Grammys?
4. The “Midnight Memories” music video:
I had to put this in here. One Direction, the boy band that’s sweeping the nation, nay, the world, released the music video for the titular song of their album, Midnight Memories. The video, which has over 8.5 million views on YouTube, features the boys hanging out with old ladies and generally getting rowdy, while making it seem like the most fun thing in the world, as only One Direction can.
3. Miley Cyrus, “Unplugged”:
Miley Cyrus had complete creative control over her MTV program, “Unplugged”, taking a decidedly Southern twist on her breakout album Bangerz. The artist, glowing in a platinum pixie cut and bedazzled cowboy gear, had Madonna on as a guest performer, but made it clear that she had originally wanted Dolly Parton to join her. And if there is no other proof that Miley is the new Queen of Pop, there is the fact that Madonna was her second choice. Sorry, Mads.
2. “The Fault In Our Stars” movie trailer:
This one dances close to my heart. The trailer for “The Fault in Our Stars”, adapted from John Green’s New York Times bestseller, premiered on Wednesday, already racking up eight million views on YouTube. Whether you have loved the book since its release, or fell in love with Augustus Waters’ lazy smirk, you know that this is one movie you have to see. With Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort leading an amazing cast, hopefully “The Fault in Our Stars” can live up to the beauty of its source material.
1. “Same Love” marriages:
Keeping up with all the feels, I had to double up on Grammy love this week. 34 couples, gay and straight, were married during the Grammys after a rendition of Macklemore’s groundbreaking song, “Same Love.” Making Grammy history, the occasion proved that music isn’t just for topping billboard charts or making money: it is, has been, and hopefully always will be, a vehicle for change. And it makes for a kick-ass wedding story!
That’s all for this week, if there’s anything I missed, or anything you think should be included in the Pop Culture Countdown next week, sound off in the comments below!