Rose Petals: A Newbie and a Veteran Watch The Bachelorette: Week 3, Part 2

Posted by Kim and Kelsey

Welcome, Rose Lovers! As our resident Bachelorette newbie Maggie is on vacation (WE MISS YOU MARSHMALLOW!) this week, our friend and psuedo-Newbie Kelsey will be filling in for the thrilling conclusion of Monday’s episode! Previously on The Bachelorette, Evan got a rose and nobody knows why. Everyone hates Chian and Evan ran crying to Chris Harrison about it. Let’s get to it!

Kelsey: Chian’s apology. “We’ve settled things.”
Kim: AKA “I’m not at all sorry and I make good television, so the producers aren’t kicking me off the show just yet.


Kelsey: Of course Wells is the voice of reason. I forgot he was here.
Kim: That’s because he doesn’t have his a capella group with him. WEENIE.

Kelsey: I do think Chian’s a time bomb.
Kim: Oh, most definitely he is. Now it’s just a matter of whether or not the producers will push him to his breaking point for ratings.

Kelsey: Of course Chian greets her at the door.
Kim: Wow, it’s almost like one of the producers made sure that would happen.

Kelsey: I think every season there’s a week where they cancel the cocktail party and have a pool party instead. It’s always a shit show. Someone is always too drunk.
Kim: My favorite thing is how they always present the pool party as if it were a spontaneous decision instead of something meticulously planned.

Kelsey: Ok the guy cannonballs with a suit, but then keeps wearing the suit?
Kim: Barney Stinson would have a HEART ATTACK.

Kelsey: Of course the promos make it seem like Evan is bleeding from a fight.
Kim: How this franchise manipulates the viewers 101. JUST ONCE I would love for something that they TEASE to actually HAPPEN.

Kelsey: Whoa Jordan and JoJo moment. He’s totally going to at least hometowns.
Kim: No, my friend. This one’s going to the FINALS.

Kelsey: “I’m not sure Jordan is into me the way I’m into him” Okaaaaaaaay, JoJo. Get the fuck out.
Kim: She’s trying to manufacture SOME modicum of suspense with this relationship. Or she genuinely IS questioning it because she’s THAT into him.

Kelsey: I do enjoy how much more casual and laid back people are during the pool parties.
Kim: They are lulled into a more relaxed existence and forget they are on a reality show. That’s when the fireworks happen. Or should.

Kelsey: I’m glad JoJo is addressing Chian being so disrespectful during the group date. I do agree. But seriously, I don’t know what JoJo likes about Evan because he’s back to feeling like a weird uncle in my mind.
Kim: Look, the problem with Chian is that he has ZERO filter for his inner monologue. You can’t TELL ME that at LEAST half the guys on that group date felt the same thing about Evan getting the rose. But they all kept their mouths shut. And agreed, gotta love that JoJo is taking no shit from him.

Kelsey: Chian watching Jojo kiss Derek feeling fucking weird. It’s weird how he’s trying to listen in on EVERYONE’S conversation. Get out.
Kim: CREEPER.

Kelsey: Chad pulling Derek aside and it is fucking heated. I’m not even sure who Derek is, but I’m a bit scared he’s going to get the shit beat out of him.
Kim: I’ve been saying from the beginning that Derek has a bit of John Krasinski face. So imagine my delight when I was scrolling through the Twitter tag during the episode and saw people saying “JIM FROM THE OFFICE IS ABOUT TO GET HIS ASS KICKED.”

Kelsey: I actually have some respect for Derek coming out of that, but WHAT THE FUCK ON CHIAN CALLING DEREK OUT ON WATCHING THE SHOW?! Chian can’t watch it because he works? Like, I’m sorry, this doesn’t air Mondays at 10 AM. It’s not the Price is Right.
Kim: Excuse me, Kelsey, but TPIR airs at 11 AM. Let’s Make a Deal airs at 10 AM. I know this because I am unemployed.

Kelsey: Ben (Kelsey’s fella): “Chad’s tie is a going home tie. Skinny knot, wide collar. Bro, up your tie game.”
Kim: This interests me greatly. I am going to need a full-on analysis of everyone’s tie from now on, Ben.

Kelsey: ” Did you only bring one white shirt, Chad?” Ben disapproves of Chian’s look, to say the least.
Kim: Everything looks weird on him because he’s TOO LARGE.

Kelsey: Wait. Who is James F? I’ve never seen him before.
Kim: They need to keep James F around so they can refer to James Taylor as James Taylor for as long as possible. Without James F, James Taylor is just James and where is the fun in that.

Kelsey: Ben: “This dude (Robby) has his suit and tie game on.”
Kim: Too bad it’s highly likely that he’s a serial killer.

Kelsey: Oh Wells, you delicate flower.
Kim: WEENIE.

Kelsey: Yay sparkles on JoJo’s dress.
Kim: Maggie would approve. ALSO GRANT IS WEARING BRACES AND LOOKING FIIIIIIIINE THIS IS NOT A DRILL.

Kelsey: Aw Alex.
Kim: The Smol Marine lives to see another day!

Kelsey: Who is left at this point without a rose? Christian, Ali Eyebrows, Chian.
Kim: And Santa Nick. We all know how this is going to end and it’s not with Christian, Ali, or Nick.
Kelsey: Of fucking course.

Kelsey: Aw. Purest Christian. Goodbye.
Kim: Christian, we know you stalk these recaps. HIIIIIII PRECIOUS CINNAMON ROLL. Hope you keep reading.

Kelsey: I don’t get Evan’s navy suit on black shirt? No thanks.
Kim: He is the wooooooorst.

Kelsey: Wait. They came to Pennsylvania. What. Boring, ABC.
Kim: Not just Pennsylvania. PITTSBURGH. (Sorry, Sage.) Keep living large, Bachelor Nation.
Kelsey: I should have gone to hang out with them.
Kim: What a missed opportunity.

Kelsey: “I can’t wait for the day when Jojo sees the man Chad is” You mean when she sees his dick?
Kim: Hey-o.

Kelsey: I’m still mourning Christian. So pure.
Kim: LBR, he was too good for this nonsense. He’s better off. Until he joins Bachelor in Paradise. DON’T DO IT CHRISTIAN.

Kelsey: “My name’s the only one on the date card, that means I’m getting a one on one.” Such insight, Luke.
Kim: He smart.

Kelsey: “How hot do we want it?”
Kim: Eyeroll. LEARN BETTER ENTENDRE.

Kelsey: Also this is just like Ben and Lauren’s hot tub time in the middle of nowhere.
Kim: WHY IS THIS A THING?

Kelsey: “I want to see Luke take his shirt off, oh my god, he’s in impeccable shape” Wasn’t the pool party yesterday?
Kim: AHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Clearly she was too busy focusing on others? *coughJordancough*

Kelsey: Hot tub is too hot. Time to grab JoJo’s ass!
Kim: Also, I HATE her swimsuit.

Kelsey: Luke seems like a simple man. Maybe kind of dumb.
Kim: Oh my GOD, Kelsey, you’re making me do this. I have to.

Kelsey: Ben affirms that he’s stupid. “I’m happy that you’re hot and that I want to fuck you and I’m happy that I’m still here” (this was Ben pretending to be Luke)
Kim: I mean…where’s the lie?

Kelsey: “Season of life” Ew Luke no.
Kim: I swear to GOD, they give all the contestants a manual of phrases they have to say on camera.

Kelsey: The more I see of Luke the more unattractive I find him.
Kim: He’s kind of dead behind the eyes? IDK there’s something missing with him. He’s kind of lifeless.

Kelsey: Ew ew stop with the strawberries JoJo. Ew. I can’t watch.
Kim: There is only one person who is allowed to eat fruit seductively.

Kelsey: “I think she’s saving me for last.” Weird positivity from Chad.
Kim: His over-inflated sense of self ASTOUNDS me.

Kelsey: Love the Chad/Bear mashup. THEN HE SAYS CHAD BEAR.
Kim: The sad/hilarious thing is I don’t think he was fed that line.

Kelsey: Whoa Alex did you just hate on Wells? Who could have a problem with Wells?
Kim: I mean he IS the geeky choir kid and Alex is the smol but beefy ROTC kid so…

Kelsey: Grant, you delicate flower.
Kim: I’m still not over the braces. BRING THEM BACK. WEAR THEM ALL THE TIME.

Kelsey: Oh my god. Chad/Alex 2 on 1!!!!!!
Kim: I am so alive right now.

Kelsey: “This is for America.” Oh Jordan. If you weren’t so beautiful, I’d hate you for that comment.
Kim: MURICA.

Kelsey: JoJo and Luke’s dinner. “You have a very relaxed confidence” It’s because there’s nothing in his head. It’s a very relaxed mind.
Kim: There is NOTHING going on up there. I’m sure he’s very nice though. He poses pensively outside of barns.

Kelsey: Luke describing his college/army experience: he sounds like he’s trying to tell you about a movie he saw and can’t remember the name of.
Kim: AHAHAHAHAHAHA YOU’RE RIGHT.
Kelsey: For the record, I support our troops.

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Girl, Serenaded – A Feminist Close-Read of One Direction’s Lyrics

cover

Posted by Mary

I was a tweenaged fan of *NSync and the Backstreet Boys and I know how big a role a boy band (or any media marketed to girls and young women) can have on a girl’s development, both positive and negative. Of course I can enjoy all kinds of media as an adult (whether I’m technically still (ahem) in the target demographic or not) that may be problematic in one way or another, but I think special care should be taken with the messages in media, including music, that is marketed to younger demographics.

I didn’t enter the One Direction fandom until December of 2015, when after an especially long night awake with my newborn daughter I messaged our own Sage: “I’m weak and impressionable. Tell me about Harry Styles.” I’d been only vaguely aware of One Direction and had seen many in my circle of friends fall into the 1D fandom one by one over the previous months and had actually resisted because they couldn’t be that great, right? (False, Past Mary, they absolutely can and they are.) Sage was as gracious as one could have expected and immediately sent me multiple pictures of Harry cradling babies lovingly in his enormous gentle be-ringed and tattooed hands as if a sleep-deprived stay at home mom of a three year old and a newborn didn’t have enough to hormonally weep over.

Over the years One Direction has repeatedly shown respect for their mostly female fanbase that goes beyond basic media training, or even just an understanding of how their proverbial bread is buttered. In their This Is Us concert film Louis Tomlinson mentions the idea of a One Direction fan, in the future, introducing the band’s music to her daughter. Niall Horan once snapped at a paparazzo who had been yelling for fans to get out of the way, “they pay my bills, not you.” Harry Styles, when asked in an interview if he and his bandmates ever called “dibs” on girls, immediately answered that they wouldn’t because they’re not about objectifying women.

It all sounds great, but do their lyrics match up to that ideal? Are the messages in their songs ones I really will want to pass onto my daughter when she’s older? To my son? Are they messages I want to be consuming myself?

That’s what I decided to find out, by doing a close reading of all of One Direction’s lyrics that explicitly mention or are addressed to women. Why make this gendered pronoun distinction? Because regardless of how One Direction has vocally acknowledged support for their LGBTQ fans (and they have), or any speculation on the sexual orientations of the band members themselves, this is a band made up of young men that is marketed TO young women and girls. The messages they send about sex and relationships through their lyrics have been and will continue to be a formative force in many of their fans’ development. If they’re going to go the extra mile to explicitly address their songs to women (or “girl” in the majority of cases), then I think we should absolutely pay extra careful attention to what they’re saying.

writing

Up All Night (2011)
9 songs of 18 mention women, 2 of those co-written by some/all of the boys

“Gotta Be You”
Written by: August Rigo, Steve Mac

Every time this song comes up on shuffle and I hear Liam’s excruciatingly un-ironic delivery of the “disappointed/anointed” rhyme I mash the skip button as fast as possible. The rhyme scheme isn’t the only offensive thing about these lyrics though. This song is a classic apology jam, vaguely referencing a laundry list of shit-stain-ery while in the same breath assuring “Girl” that he’ll always be there for her now because he’ll never make it without her, yadda yadda bullshit BYE.

Most problematic line: “And girl what a mess I made upon your innocence” Just imagine me gently dry heaving in the background.

Least problematic line: “Can we fall one more time? Stop the tape and rewind” She muttered grudgingly.

(Ed. Note: Harry must agree with Mary on this one, because he would change the lyrics early and often on the band’s first tour: “Wrong size shoe,” “Scooby Doo,” “It’s Kung-Fu,” and my personal fave, “Big brown poo.” Enjoy.)

“One Thing”
Written by: Savon Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

one thing

“That one thing” that you’ve got/he wants/he needs is most obviously a vagina since a song about boobs would be “those two things” and a song about a butt would have way more double entendres. But when you really examine the lyrics you get a sense that the singers may be suffering from some manner of brain injury? There’s the stuttered “I don’t”s and “get out”s, plus the references to flying, Kryptonite, being frozen and rendered mute, and climbing walls, that speak to delusions of being a superhero. So maybe “that one thing” you’ve got that he needs isn’t a sex organ but actually some anti-psychotic medication. I’m not a doctor but it seems like a wise option to consider. Overall I’m more concerned than offended.

Bonus: something about the bridge’s panicked “get out, get out, get outta my head!” makes me think of this tweet and I end up cackling good-naturedly for a while until it all comes back to women being walking penis receptacles expected to interpret men’s emotions for them and then it’s not so funny anymore.

Most problematic line: “Something’s gotta give now/Cause I’m dying just to know your name/And I need you here with me now/Cause you’ve got that one thing” Can you feel his desperation building to a fever pitch until the only thing left to do is rant at you for twenty minutes about how nice guys never get the girl? CAN YOU?

Least problematic line: If you just imagine the whole song as a kind of nouveau Broadway musical number sung by Superman to one of his arch-nemeses as they play a game of keepaway with some kind of amulet or super weapon it’s a much richer visual narrative.

“Taken”
Written by: Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Lindy Robbins, Toby Gad

Here we have the first track One Direction officially wrote on and also one I skip every time it pops up on shuffle. Sadly the music sounds a lot whinier than the message of this song actually is because lyrically it’s a vicious takedown of that ex who ruined your life at least once and popped up again once you’ve moved on to another relationship. When I really stopped to listen and focus on the lyrics I could hear this as a Kelly Clarkson track full of righteously spurned fury and that is a high, high compliment.

Most offensive line: “You’re impossible to resist, but I wouldn’t bet your heart on it” The song as a whole does seem to insinuate that “Girl” torpedoed their past relationship entirely on her own while he was completely faultless, which isn’t realistic, but line by line the “impossible to resist” bit – which is immediately contradicted by the second half of the phrase – is as close as this one gets to problematic.

Least offensive line: “You think I’m doing this to make you jealous/And I know that you hate to hear this, but this is not about you anymore” is about as gentle and as devastating a statement as one could hope to deliver to That Ex.

“Up All Night”
Written by: Matt Squire, Savan Kotecha

up all night

Here it is, the harmless party anthem One Direction seemed to try to duplicate a few more times in their later albums, none with the same pure optimistic and entirely non-gross results. This song is so harmless it’s not even conceited with this fictional party’s playlist; Katy Perry’s on replay, yo.

Most problematic line: I mean, if you don’t like Katy Perry it doesn’t sound like you’ll enjoy yourself.

Least problematic line: “I’m only thinking ’bout this girl I’m seeing/I hope she’ll wanna kiss me back” *weeps* PROTECT THESE CHILDREN, THEY’RE SO YOUNG.

“I Want”
Written by: Tom Fletcher

This is really just awful beginning to end. I have nothing else to say.

Most problematic line: “Give you this, give you that, blow a kiss, take it back, if I looked inside your brain/I would find lots of things, clothes, shoes, diamond rings, stuff that’s driving me insane”

Least problematic line: I got nothin’ guys. This is a mess. I weep for any woman who ever met Tom Fletcher.

“Everything About You”
Written by: Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Wayne Hector, Steve Robson

This is one of those songs that’s only problematic in that it’s basically meaningless. It’s a relentlessly positive moment of wide-eyed devotion made up of some very questionable grammar, but you know what? That’s fine sometimes, and definitely preferable to songs with actively damaging messages. It’s lyrical cotton candy.

Most problematic line: “It’s everything about you, you, you/Everything that you do, do, do/From the way that we touch, baby/To the way that you kiss on me” If we’re talking about “everything” the examples should really include more than just sex stuff.

Least problematic line: “Yes I like the way you smile with your eyes/Other guys see it but don’t realise that it’s my loving” Could have been one of those “she’s mine and I’ve marked her so no other male can ever gaze upon her form” lines but this reads as a much less possessive desire to be a reason this girl is happy whether she’s with him at the moment or not, with no expectation of everyone knowing she’s “his” or any such nonsense.

“Stole My Heart”
Written by: Paul Meehan, Jamie Scott

This is a soulless dead-eyed mannequin of a song. I guess if all it takes to capture your heart is a one look at a girl’s face in the middle of what sounds like a snooze of a rave, it’s not surprising that there’s little substance here. It’s doubly sad that Liam is in especially soulful voice on this track because it feels wasted.

Most problematic line: “Cause your friends, they look good but you look better” HARK, I HAVE BEEN JUDGED MOST FUCKABLE FROM THIS COHORT OF FUCKABLES, HALLELUJAH! Said no woman ever. Actually there’s a tie because “As we lay on the ground I put my arms around you and we can stay here tonight” sounds a lot like passing out in a parking lot. No thanks.

Least problematic line: “Oh, life! Come on head don’t you fail me now” If “Oh, life!” is a legit Walt Whitman reference this song takes on an entirely new level of meta depth and I demand at least three Dead Poets Society fanvids set to it within the week. Don’t fail me internet.

“Another World”
Written by: RedOne, Teddy Sky, Geo Slam, Eric Sanicola, Bilal Hajji, Achraf Jannusi

*Swallows down laughter* Okay so. This is very encouraging and nice! That’s good! It’s a very positive song about being nice and encouraging and supportive! I have just one quick question though and that is: I can’t actually feel the thing that’s like a stone on fire. Can we revisit that? Is there lighter fluid involved? Are you a pyrotechnic specialist, or, like an arson investigator, or a Geologist or something? Can we call one to discuss this? It’s a very nice song though, we don’t have to have a talk about this one.

Most problematic line: “One for me, one for you, whatcha doing?” I mean, if we’re talking about, like, cookies or cheeseburgers or checks for $100,000, I’m taking it, for sure. I’ll need more information though before I can give a definitive answer

Least problematic line: “I’ll lift you up, I’ll never stop/You know I’ll take you to another world/I’ll build you up, I’ll never stop/You know I’ll take you to another world”

“Na Na Na”
Written by: Mustapha Omer, Matt Squire, James Murray, Savan Kotecha, Iain James

It sounds like these two jerks deserve each other. Equality!

take me home

Take Me Home (2012)
12 of 20 songs mention women, 2 of those co-written by some/all of the boys

“Live While We’re Young”
Written by: Savan Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

live while we're young

I was kind of rooting for this one as a non-sexual party anthem but I guess I’m thinking of one of One Direction’s other songs with that exact profile because this ain’t it.

Most problematic line: “Hey girl it’s now or never, it’s now or never/Don’t overthink just let it go” Okay then, let’s go with never. Byeee!

Least problematic line: “Yeah, we’ll be doing what we do, just pretending that we’re cool” Any fan of One Direction understands on a painfully deep level that these nerds will never come close to actually being cool, so good on them for acknowledging it.

“Kiss You”
Written by: Albin Nedler, Kristoffer Fogelmark, Kristian Lundin, Shellback, Savan Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

kiss you

See! It can be done! This track is both sex-positive and consent-centric, and it’s an energetic pop anthem that’s easy to dance to. The phrasing puts the “girl” in the driver’s seat of the interaction the whole way through, with only a few lines of one verse straying from the overwhelmingly empowering message (chinny-chin-chins? . . . okay). The pre-chorus and chorus make up one repeated call for clear verbal consent to what sounds like a hella joyful hook up and it’s all made even better by one of One Direction’s trademark ridiculous videos.

Most problematic line: “Oh I just wanna show you off to all of my friends/Making them drool down their chinny-chin-chins/Baby be mine tonight, mine tonight/Baby be mine tonight, yeah”

Least problematic line: “Oh, tell me, tell me, tell me how to turn your love on/You can get, get anything that you want/Baby just shout it out, shout it out/ Baby just shout it out, yeah”

“C’mon, C’mon”
Written by: Jamie Scott, John Ryan, Julian Bunetta

So let’s get this straight, Fuckboy. You came here with one girl, but then she “had to go” (godspeed, sister). And then you noticed a second girl who looked “amazing, standing alone,” which, when you combine those observations sounds like exactly why women are told never to appear Alone While Female in public. It all gets so much worse from there. It’s really depressing because this track is a JAM and I have sung and danced along to it without a second thought many times. Luckily it is pretty similar to the far superior “Kiss You.”

Most problematic line: “The one that I came with didn’t know how to move/The way that you let your hair down I can tell that you do” Girl just run. Run away right now.

Least problematic line: “Yeah, the music is so loud/I wanna be yours now/So c’mon c’mon and dance with me baby” Really, by virtue of not telling you much about the rest of the lyrics, these ones win.

“Last First Kiss”
Written by: Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Zayn Malik, Albin Nedler, Kristoffer Fogelmark, Savan Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

This song is, lyrically, exactly the kind of sugary sentiment I think most people expect of a boyband’s mid-tempo ballad offering and you know what? It’s good! It manages to be about a guy hoping to make a leap from friendship into romance without taking it too close to Nice Guy™ territory because there’s actually nothing presumptuous about it. He’s not expecting any particular response, not making any demands, just having a few moments of nervous expectation before making a declaration of what he wants from a relationship. It’s hopeful and respectful and romantic and maybe a little brain-meltingly sweet but this is pop music and that’s okay.

Most problematic line: There’s really nothing? Truly, really, nothing here pings my radar for yikesness

Least problematic line: “Baby tell me what to change, I’m afraid you’ll run away/If I tell you what I’ve wanted to tell you, yeah” It’s this caution and nervousness that keep any of the tone of these lyrics from becoming possessive or gross. Just all sweet pure yearning. It’s so nice I want to barf.

“Over Again”
Written by: Alexander Gowers, Blue Bear, Ed Sheeran

Honestly this one is tough because so little of it is structured coherently. Which is not necessarily a dig, just . . . it’s very hard to parse a narrative or specific meaning line by line here. That said I can’t see anything gross so as far as I’m concerned we can all plaintively sing along with this one to our hearts’ contents.

Most problematic line: “I can make your tears fall down like the showers that are British” I’m offended on behalf of every sentence ever diagrammed. Stop this.

(Ed Note: Louis thinks it’s offensive too.)

Least problematic line: “And I can lend you broken parts that might fit like this/And I will give you all my heart so we can start it all over again” I’m a sucker for a “broken parts” line, what can I say?

“They Don’t Know About Us”
Written by: Tommy Lee James, Tommy P. Gregersen, Tebey and Peter Wallevik

So there’s something to be said, especially when you’re just starting to explore romantic relationships, for listening to the perspectives and advice of people you trust. If everybody you love and trust is telling you the person you’re with is a douche-canoe, or that they’re worried the relationship appears to be progressing very fast, or any number of other concerns, then taking a step back to evaluate for yourself is a good idea. Given that this song is all about a guy telling a girl that nobody else “gets” their relationship and that if they knew how much it means to HIM that then they would “just be jealous” . . . well, those could be red flags if he’s truly trying to keep other people’s opinions and influence out of his way. I’m gonna give this one a big yellow light and keep moving.

Most problematic line: “They don’t know about the things we do/They don’t know about the ‘I love you’s/But I bet you if they only knew/They would just be jealous of us” If a woman or man has to explain that they love their significant other when their actions don’t show it, something is wrong.

Least problematic line: “They don’t know what we do best/That’s between me and you, our little secret” All that said, and assuming everything is healthy and happy etc, yes please do feel free be discreet about your sex life if that’s what works for you.

“She’s Not Afraid”
Written by: Tim Woods, John Ryan, Jamie Scott, Julian Bunetta

so hard

Welcome to how women feel when dudes say whatever they think we want to hear to get us in bed. I mean kudos for not vilifying her for it, but just because she doesn’t want to have the kind of relationship you want to have doesn’t mean she’s “afraid of love.” You are not the end-all be-all of love in her life. You cannot “save” her with your love. You are a slam piece and if that’s what you want, great! If not, say goodbye and mean it because clearly this girl is committed to doing her thing.

Most problematic line: “What about all the things we say talking on the phone so late?/I can’t let her get away from me, oh/When I say that I can’t do it no more/She’s back in my door” To be entirely fair, if she’s being intentionally misleading about what she wants, that is of course a problem.

Least problematic line: “Maybe she’s just trying to test me, wanna see how hard I’m going to work/Wanna see if I can really tell how much she’s worth, what you’re worth” Again, bless them for not making this an angry accusatory bitchfest and turning that critical eye on themselves instead of judging her. A+ extra kudos for that.

“Loved You First”
Written by: Tim Woods, Tommy Lee James, Tebey, John Ryan, Julian Bunetta

Behold: the ballad of the Nice Guy™.

Most problematic line: “Cause I was the only one who loved you from the start” *SIRENS BLARE* IMMEDIATELY GET AWAY FROM ANYBODY WHO TELLS YOU THIS.

Least problematic line: “Had my chances/Could have been where he is standing/That’s what hurt the most, girl I came so close” The only legitimate cause for sorrow at someone you love being in a relationship with someone else is that maybe you really just didn’t tell them how you felt.

“Nobody Compares”
Written by: Shellback, Savan Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

Dropping an *N Sync reference cannot save you when you: open with the incredibly creepy line, “You’re so pretty when you cry” and then go on about how 1) her main value to you lies in her appearance, 2) you’re mostly sad because you know she won’t fuck you tonight, 3) your shitty friends told you she’s literally not worth even this feeble show of humanity and you haven’t ruled out that they’re right, 4) you have absolutely no clue what you could have possibly done wrong.

Most problematic line: All of it? I’m gonna go with all of it.

Least problematic line: “Now you’re tearing up my heart, tearing up my heart/You’re tearing up my heart

“Still the One”
Written by: Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Liam Payne, Savan Kotecha, Carl Falk, Rami

This song is what happens when the guy from “Loved You First” goes from whiner to stalker.

Most problematic line: “You might have moved on, but girl, you should know/That I know you’re still the one/I know it’s saying too much but I will never give up”

Least problematic line: “I was so stupid for letting you go” When you read these lyrics all together you notice things like how many of these songs whining about failed relationships include a line about knowing he’s done something stupid and that really resonates with me.

“Truly Madly Deeply”
Written by: Toby Gad, Lindy Robbins, Trevor Dahl

This is mostly inoffensive, save for the general air of barely-concealed panic while the protagonist watches his new girlfriend sleep and contemplates whether he should wake her up to alert her that he maybe needs to take these concerns to a licensed therapist to learn some cognitive behavioral techniques to help combat obsessive thoughts. (Don’t wake her up, bro. Especially with granola in bed.)

Most problematic line: “Should I put coffee and granola on a tray in bed” Oh my god NO, think about the CRUMBS, child!

Least problematic line: “Truly madly deeply I am foolishly completely falling” For better or worse, a Savage Garden reference will never go amiss with me.

“Magic”
Written by: Savan Kotecha, Rami, Carl Falk

There’s so little content here and so much repetition that the one yikes-y line makes a big impression.

Most problematic line: “But baby you’ve got me moving too fast cause I know you wanna be bad/And girl when you’re looking like that I can’t hold back”

Least problematic line: I guess otherwise this song is fine but consider how superior a cover of any of these other songs titled “Magic” could have been.

midnight memories 2

Midnight Memories (2013)
7 of 18 songs mention women, 6 of those co-written by some/all of the boys

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“We aren’t here to make things perfect.” – A Love Letter to Moonstruck

Posted by Sarah

Oh, Moonstruck. You are the “Snap out of it!” heard ‘round the world, and I love you. You gave me Cher with an accent. You gave me some of the first glimpses of New York that I can remember. You gave me the best comeback line to ever have in my arsenal: “In time, you’ll drop dead and I’ll come to your funeral in a red dress.” And you gave me one of the most surefire ways to connect with someone I’ve just met. The second someone discovers the massive Cher fan in me—and, if I’m honest, it usually only takes until the introduction for that to happen—they will, more often than not, tell me that they love Moonstruck. It’s not hard to figure out why: it earned Cher her Oscar, and is therefore her best known film. Even when you go to one of her concerts and are in an arena filled with thousands of fans who likely have seen and heard everything she’s ever done, this is what gets the most applause during the movie montage that’s projected on the screens, without fail. Let’s be real here: as much as I would love it, we’re probably not going to be bonding over Come back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (okay, that actually happened once, but still).

When Kim asked me to write this post, I initially wanted to do something in the vein of my Mermaids/Mrs. Flax post, where I focused on one thing that makes the film stand out so much. But as I started my umpteenth rewatch of this movie, scouting for elements to hone in on, I fully realized that there are so many things that make Moonstruck stand out, and it would be criminal to only write about one. How could I talk about the relationships depicted in the film without also talking about how generally wonderful the players are? Or focus on the main love story of Loretta and Ronny while neglecting all of the other side stories of the film? So I present to you the things that make me love Moonstruck, the things that keep me coming back to Brooklyn and the Grand Ticino and the Met. These are the elements that, when they’re put together, create a movie that makes me so incredibly happy long after it ends.

And that, my friends, is amore.

“Where’s the Met?”

I don’t know if I’m the only one—I hope I’m not—but Moonstruck and “That’s Amore” are so connected that I can’t see/hear/think of one without calling the other to mind (the same goes for that damn Vicki Carr record). The music in this movie is so on point, whether it’s a previously released song or Dick Hyman’s score for the film. It’s the perfect accent to anything it accompanies. One of my favorite scenes of the film occurs when Loretta and Ronny are searching for each other outside of Lincoln Center, and the main reason for that is the music: that burst as Loretta steps out of the cab, the wandering feel to it as they both turn around hoping to find the other, the swell when they finally lock eyes. Just thinking about it makes me want to drop everything and watch from the beginning. But out of everything the music in this film has to offer, the use of opera is the most striking to me.

Much like the way Tea with Mussolini (my favorite of the films Cher has been in) treats visual art, Moonstruck features opera in a beautifully powerful way. Having studied music for the majority of my life, I am no stranger to opera. I appreciate it, but I don’t actively seek it out. However, for the length of Moonstruck, I am as in love with it as Ronny is. I feel the emotions; I get caught up in it. And I think the biggest reason for that is because every time we hear opera in this movie, we hear it during a pivotal scene in the Loretta/Ronny love story. Ronny has a recording on the turntable for a moment as Loretta cooks him a steak. That music swells back up again as he carries her to his bed. They’re surrounded by it at the Met, and it plays as Loretta takes Ronny’s hand as she gives into her feelings and follows him up to his apartment. It underscores the morning after, as Ronny sits alone in his apartment and Loretta walks home, kicking that can down the street along the way (again, one of my favorite things in this movie, visually and sonically).

As he tries to get just one date with her, Ronny tells Loretta, “I love two things. I love you, and I love the opera. Now, if I could have the two things I love together for one night, I would be satisfied to give up—ah, Christ—to give up the rest of my life.” For obvious reasons, we only hear opera whenever Ronny is on screen, and Ronny is almost never on screen without Loretta. To feature music that Ronny loves so deeply whenever Loretta is around him highlights his love for her to the Nth degree. In turn, we not only understand the overwhelming and rapid overhaul of both of their lives, but also feel the love Ronny has as we hear the music through his ears and see Loretta through his eyes in those moments. After all, it’s only fitting that the most important thing in his life accompanies his journey with the most important person in his life.

Most of all, the inclusion of opera in Moonstruck allows for an accessibility that I would venture is not normally associated with the art form. I personally feel the emotions of the excerpts of La Bohéme deeper when they’re associated with the action in the movie than I likely would have on my own. It’s much easier to connect with something when you have a familiar reference point to hold on to, and Loretta and Ronny’s story becomes that reference point as we hear the music that underscores their interactions. It makes me want to branch out and explore some more opera on my own (maybe one of these days, I actually will).

La bella luna

Bless this movie for making a legitimate player out of the moon. Clearly this film was going to be lousy with imagery—otherwise WHY CALL IT MOONSTRUCK—but the way in which it’s utilized in the story is stunning. Aside from a couple of mentions, the moon doesn’t become a full player in the film until dinner at the Castorini’s, when Raymond talks about something that happened while Cosmo and Rose were dating:

Raymond: I never told you this, ‘cause it’s not really a story. But one time, I woke up in the middle of the night because of this bright light in my face, like a flashlight. I couldn’t think of what it was. I looked out the window, and it was the moon, as big as a house. I’ve never seen the moon so big before or since. I was almost scared, like it was gonna crush the house. I looked down, and standing there in the street was Cosmo looking up at the windows. This is the funny part: I got mad at you, Cosmo. I thought you had brought that big moon over to my house, because you were so in love, you woke me up with it.

What follows is a sequence of scenes clearly affected by La Bella Luna. First up: Rose and Cosmo. Rose walks into the bedroom, trying to get Cosmo’s attention, but he’s sound asleep. When she turns the lights off, Rose is taken by the glow of the moonlight, walking towards the window to get a better look. What’s striking is the sadness in Rose’s eyes as she stares at the moon and sighs. It’s as if the mix of Raymond’s story at dinner and Cosmo being completely unaffected by the moon now makes her truly realize that her relationship with her husband is not what it once was. The next time we see Rose—the day after—she tells Loretta that, despite having no concrete proof, she knows that Cosmo is cheating on her. I can’t help but make the connection to Rose’s moment of solitude the night before.

Loretta, in Ronny’s bed while he’s asleep, gazes at the moon. Shortly after she walks towards his window for a closer look, Ronny wakes up and joins her, sharing a quiet and intimate moment together; it feels as though they’ve known each other and been together for a long time, rather than their reality of having just met. It’s the instance when we see that this is not just an impulsive one-off occurrence; it’s real and it’s messy, but for now it’s peaceful, a glimpse into what life could be. They aren’t worried about the consequences; they’re just in the moment, gazing up at the giant snowball.

Raymond wakes up the same way he did all those years ago, the moonlight in his eyes like a flashlight. Convinced that Cosmo is once again down on the street looking up at the window, he wakes Rita before he walks over to check for his brother-in-law. Rita shows a hint of annoyance at being woken up, but once she takes a look at Raymond by the window she softens, telling him, “You know something? In that light, with that expression on your face, you look about twenty-five years old.” And I can’t help but smile every time Raymond gets that smirk on his face and jumps back into bed. How could you not be happy to see that kind of excitement in any relationship, let alone one that is still going strong after so many years of marriage? It shows—perhaps in contrast to Rose’s fears a minute earlier—that love and passion do not have to fade over time.

And last, but certainly not least, there’s the old man howling at the moon with his dogs. Because he is a damn delight and should be doing that all the time.

“The storybooks are bullshit.”

Of course the central relationship here is between Loretta and Ronny, that impulsive whirlwind romance. But Moonstruck really goes the extra mile by wonderfully depicting other archetypal relationships on the sidelines, and it’s done in a way that doesn’t feel clichéd. They’re not going through the motions just because they need to fill some space in a film; you become invested in each of these characters, and the relationships they conduct with each other. Loretta and Johnny embody the relationship where you know you’re settling, but you’re doing it anyway because it’s the safe bet (although, even for settling, I think Loretta could have done a lot better). Cosmo and Mona clearly represent the mid-life crisis affair, while the professor who dines at the Grand Ticino perhaps falls into a similar category, as the older man perpetually chasing after much younger women (or, once he meets Rose, just women in general).

The juxtaposition of Rose and Cosmo’s marriage and Raymond and Rita’s is an interesting one, especially because it’s within the family. Both are long-term marriages, but with different trajectories. When a couple has been together for decades, it’s easy to assume that they’ll be together for the rest of their lives, and Raymond and Rita are the shining example of that. They’re playful, they’re loving, and they’re basically the portrait of the relationship endgame for this movie. In turn, Rose and Cosmo represent the kind of relationship that appears rock solid on the outside, but is distant and shaky behind closed doors. Inevitably, everything works out for the best—it’s a comedy, for god’s sake—but it certainly makes you reconsider the assumption of an uncomplicated decades-long relationship.

Stronger than these, though, are the familial relations between the Castorini/Cappomagi clan. Right off the bat, you know how important family is to these people because most of them are living under one roof. Cosmo, for one, is a pretty stoic man for the better part of the film, but when something happens to his family—whether it’s Loretta getting engaged to the wrong guy, or being confronted with his affair and the effect it has on the ones he loves—those bursts of emotion come out and you realize what is most important to him in this world. And I think without the strong family ties in this film, Moonstruck wouldn’t be half the movie it is. Let’s face it: your family is who you turn to for honest opinions on just about anything. They know your mistakes and your bad decisions, and they love you no matter what. So a family filled with the characters we’re given in Moonstruck is a family that provides that honesty with a hilariously candid twist. The bottom line? No matter how much of a crazy spiral your life is in, you can always come home, and your family will bring you back down to Earth…but not before telling you that your life’s going down the toilet.

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“You’re a hell of a woman, Rachel.” – In Appreciation of Rachel Flax and Mermaids

Posted by Sarah

Full disclosure: I love absolutely everything there is to love about Mermaids. I love how it’s funny and quirky without losing any heart. I love how extraordinary the cast is (I don’t think I’ve ever watched this movie as an adult without making some remark about how flawless Bob Hoskins was as Lou). I love how it honors the book it was based on while fleshing out the characters who didn’t get a lot of page time in a way that doesn’t compromise the spirit of the story. And I love the soundtrack so much that it has a solid place in my go-to listening material. I totally get that it’s supposed to serve as a coming-of-age movie, and it does, complete with all the awkwardness, hilarity and heartbreak that comes as a package deal with adolescence. I’m on board with that; after all, it’s Charlotte’s voice over for a reason. But for me, Mermaids has always been about who I love most about the film: Mrs. Flax.

I will admit, a big part of that is because I practically worship at the altar of Cher, and have since I was eight and had my mind blown to bits hearing “Believe” on the radio for the first time. In spite of that, the first time I saw Mermaids—ah, those impressionable pre-teen years—I knew Rachel Flax was a portrait of the woman I wanted to be when I grew up, mainly for the abundance of self-confidence she carried with her everywhere she went. As a kid, I was always shy around people I didn’t know, questioning myself constantly in the midst of strangers; and if I’m being honest, I still get this way at twenty-five. It amazed me to see Rachel consistently put herself in a new town with new faces and never back down even slightly from who she is. Over the years, and over countless viewings of this movie, my love and appreciation for her continued to grow. She’s not perfect and she never claims to be, but she is well-intentioned. She has a big personality and doesn’t care to cover it up. She’s fiercely independent, strong, and protective when it comes to the people she loves. And while she can be stubborn, she’s not averse to conceding…she just might need a little extra push to do it.

But this is all just scratching the surface. My finger’s already on the map (glory glory hallelujah), so why don’t you join me on a trip to Eastport to see what makes Mrs. Polka Flax such a powerhouse?

Her culinary creations are wonderful.

Let me throw this over to Charlotte for a second: “A word about Mrs. Flax and food: the word is ‘hor d’oeuvres.’ Fun Finger Foods is her main sourcebook, and that’s all the woman cooks. Anything more, she says, is too big a commitment.” I can’t cook to save my life, but I also don’t really want to. You could probably chalk this up to laziness (okay, you could definitely chalk this up to laziness), but I honestly can’t remember the last time I made something more complicated than Easy Mac for myself. That being said, I could absolutely get behind Rachel’s cooking methods. I know you could correlate the whole commitment thing to the bigger picture of Rachel’s life, skipping town all the time without fully committing to much of anything. But if we’re strictly speaking about food, I feel this so hard.

Not only that, her presentation is impeccable. Little American flags on her bagels? The symmetrical arrangement of those marshmallows? Sign me up for all of that. And seriously, Charlotte is justified in her frustration, but in any other circumstance, how could you possibly be angry with a star-shaped sandwich in your hand?

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that in the course of my research for this post, I found out that there is, in fact, a Mrs. Flax’s Fun Finger Foods book that was released as a promotional tool for the movie. If anyone happens to find a copy for me, I will be your best friend for life. And maybe make you some marshmallow kabobs.

She speaks her mind.

Life’s too short to keep things bottled up, which is why I have to bow down to Mrs. Flax for having no filter. Whether she’s criticizing Charlotte’s history teacher on sight (“He’s driving an Edsel, for Christ’s sake.”) or discussing her swollen pregnancy feet with a couple of nuns—much to her daughter’s dismay—if you come into conversation with Rachel, you come into conversation with a straight shooter, even if that conversation is post-coital (Case in point, Lou: “Are you always this aggressive after sex?” Rachel: “You call this aggressive?”). It’s a candor that may not be for everyone, but you will always know where Mrs. Flax stands on any given matter. And that’s a gift, if you choose to accept it.

She mastered the art of the simile.

Need I say more?

She’s smooth as hell.

 

This woman has skills I could never possess. She turned a completely innocent conversation in a shoe store about trying to keep kosher into a 100% successful flirtation—in front of nuns, no less—AND she lands a first date at her kid’s parent/teacher night? Impressive. And you know that this stuff is effective, because more often than not, Lou has some sort of reaction when she leaves the room, and those reactions are everything. Again, it’s that confidence in herself that exudes from her. She knows she’s got it, and she is absolutely going to flaunt it. Four for you, Rachel.

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“What a lovely day!” – Mad Max: Fury Road

Posted by Shannon Leigh

Good morning! Do you have a minute to talk about our lord and savior Imperator Furiosa?

Light spoilers.

Those of you who know me from The Tweeters may know that I have a live-in gentleman friend. A few of you may also know that he is very much a movie buff, but can be ::ahem:: extremely critical of cinema, enough that he hasn’t set foot in a movie theater for about five years.

Until now.

My boyfriend has been talking about Mad Max: Fury Road for months, and I’ll be honest with you, at first I just wasn’t interested. Really all I knew about it was that it was the continuation of what looked like a coked-up action franchise I’d never seen, and that Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron were in it. And while I enjoy a well-constructed action sequence as well as the next girl, and possibly more considering the years I spent training in stage combat and stunts, MMFR just didn’t look like it was up my alley. I was perfectly happy to let my boyfriend go to the movie theater and break his absence streak on his own.

Then I saw a news piece online that Eve Ensler had been on set, there to consult specifically on the subject of violence against women for the benefit of five female characters. Five of them. In addition to Theron. At this point I had just recently seen Age of Ultron, and during the coming attractions I had counted how many trailers boasted more than one female character. The answer was one. (San Andreas, in case you were wondering, because it’s a disaster movie so the hero has to save his college-aged daughter AND his estranged wife.) And now it turned out MMFR not only had at least six female characters, but a famously feminist playwright had been brought on set to make sure those characters had depth and were treated with respect. At this point my interest was somewhat piqued.

Around this time I also started seeing articles posted by my friends in the stunt community extolling the difficulty and scale of the stunt work in the movie. I started to get a little more interested.

George Miller, the director, offered up some quotes about how he can’t help but be a feminist after being surrounded by “magnificent” women. He insisted that his wife be the one to edit the movie so it wouldn’t look like every other action movie. I was highly interested now.

Then came the MRAs marching one by one, shouting about boycotting the movie because it was feminist propaganda (if you don’t know about this one especially, Google it because it was hilarious).

At this point I told my boyfriend he would have company at the theater when he went to see Mad Max: Fury Road, and a few days later we were in a remarkably silent theater for a Monday matinee, my boyfriend practically vibrating with excitement next to me.

First, I will address the one hang-up I had about the film, which is personal preference and nothing else. I’m not sure exactly how to describe the aesthetic of the movie; the closest I’ve come is “grotesque western metal-punk.” This is not your Hunger Games post-apocalyptic society, where everyone is still beautiful and whole, merely covered with either dirt or crazy make-up depending on district. The majority of people you see on-screen are misshapen and bizarre, sometimes even monstrous. Body modifications abound, and the masses of scar tissue are the least of your worries (I could go the rest of my life without ever seeing the gout-stricken feet and ankles of one of the warlords again). It’s a choice Miller made, and it’s certainly visually striking, but I wasn’t a fan. And that’s okay!

Because everything else about the movie was awesome.

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“Never go to Reno, girls.” – Life Lessons from Troop Beverly Hills

Posted by Sarah and Maggie

When Netflix added Troop Beverly Hills to instant streaming late last year, we immediately organized a group twitter watch and had the time of our lives sharing this movie experience for the first time. And, yes, this movie is FUN but watching it as adults made us realize how many life lessons they snuck into it, somehow without ever crossing that annoying after school special line. Phyllis Nefler is a queen, a fashion icon, and a role model. She and the girls are a team, and teamwork has never looked so enjoyable and so rewarding.

Which makes it all the more baffling that the Girl Scouts objected to this movie. In a special feature on the recently released Blu-ray, Shelley Long explains that the organization was sent a copy of the script, only to report that they wanted nothing to do with the movie and wouldn’t allow use of the Girl Scout name (we personally think “Wilderness Girls” sounds more badass anyway). Sure, Phyllis may not be the woman you automatically think of when you think of a troop leader, but the lessons she teaches the girls in her troop–and the lessons she learns herself–are lessons that any Girl Scout, Wilderness Girl, or human being should keep in their back pocket. Turns out shopping wasn’t Troop 332’s greatest skill after all.

-Sarah and Maggie

“Never go to Reno, girls.”

In the movie, Phyllis follows up this tidbit of advice to the girls at the divorce court hearing with “California property laws can’t be beat.” And yes, it’s practical (if a bit cynical?) advice. But I think the larger lesson to draw here is about self-worth and knowing your value. Phyllis becomes stronger over the course of the movie, but even at the very beginning when she and Freddie are arguing, she tells him not to mock her and states that he never acknowledges her contribution to their marriage. She stands up for herself, even though she’s vulnerable and doubting herself a little. And by the time Freddie tells her he’s proud of her during the check presentation gala in the middle of the movie, she’s grateful for his acknowledgment but I think it’s a more significant moment when she replies that she’s proud of herself too.

As a young woman in the professional world, I know a bit about being underestimated and not being taken as seriously as I should be so I relate pretty hard to Phyllis, who’s faced with this constantly throughout the movie. I think very carefully before I speak because I want people to hear the content of what I’m saying and not have an excuse to write me off as hysterical if I’m not perfectly calm. I have to know my worth and stand up for myself first instead of leaving it up to others to do it for me. There are always going to be people like Freddie who underestimate you or Velda who won’t give you a fair chance. You can’t let them shake you; you have to be confident in yourself and your abilities and carry on and prove them wrong.

-Maggie

“Good for her! Not for me.”

 
The first time I watched this movie after reading Amy Poehler’s Yes Please, it became glaringly obvious that Troop Beverly Hills is 106 minutes of “Good for her! Not for me.” In six words, Amy brings home an essential concept that Velda should have kept in the back of her mind for occasions like this: There is more than one way of successfully doing things.

Phyllis and the girls are pitted against Velda’s version of a Wilderness Girl for the entire movie, which is ridiculous when you look at Velda’s expectations of a troop leader. In the orientation meeting, she explains, “When we’re looking for new leaders, we’re looking for a real no-nonsense woman, a woman who can cope with anything, a woman who doesn’t cause a ruckus, but can still get the job done.” So let’s go through this checklist, shall we? The troop earns 36 patches in three weeks. Sure, some of them aren’t marking traditional achievements (although Gardening with Glamour should really be a mainstay), but everything the troop did still warranted hard work. They end up selling over four thousand boxes of cookies without going door-to-door, and I’d love for someone to explain to me why celebrating an accomplishment of that magnitude constitutes an embarrassment to the organization, VELDA. They make it to the jamboree and win despite the Red Feathers’ constant cheating AND making time to help an injured Velda get to the finish line. Perhaps most important out of everything, she adapts the teachings of the organization into lessons the girls can use in their everyday lives in Beverly Hills. If that doesn’t flat-out scream “Troop Leader of the Year,” I don’t know what does. Phyllis got the job done; it just wasn’t on Velda’s terms. But her terms are irrelevant, as Beverly Hills becomes the new poster troop.

Sorry, Ms. Plendor. Better luck with Velda’s Avengers. But once you secede from the organization, maybe you should teach your new batch of girls that life isn’t one-size-fits-all, that sacrificing yourself in order to squeeze into another person’s expectations only strips the joy out of success. And then you can commemorate the whole thing with a Good for Her, Not for Me patch.

-Sarah

“Uniforms blur an individual’s sense of self.”

I wore a school uniform from first through eighth grade and it still weirdly influences my sense of style, a full 20 years later. I tend to wear similar outfits every day, I feel anxious when I am over or underdressed, I can’t wear shirts with collars. I was a bridesmaid in September and wearing the same dress and shoes as five other ladies felt so soothing, I can’t even tell you. And sure, we personalized our school uniforms by choosing accessories but no one ever came close to the way Phyllis made her troop leader uniforms her own. I love how she describes everything wrong with the standard uniform to the girls when she tries it on for the first time, only to declare “But all of that can be fixed.” You don’t have to accept what’s given to you as is and you don’t have to let someone else mold you. You can have a great experience as part of a group or team while still being yourself and an individual. Yes, uniforms can blur an individual’s sense of self and the lesson here is not to let them.

-Maggie

“The most important thing is having friends.”

Leave it to Phyllis to hit on something so simple yet so vital. While she’s consoling Emily after learning of her family’s financial problems, Phyllis drops a truth bomb. In the end, material possessions don’t matter nearly as much as the people you choose to have around you. Friends are chosen family. They see you at your worst, help you wipe away your tears, and still love you unconditionally. They put a Tina Turner wig on and sing with you about chocolate chip cookies. They try out new dance moves with you in brightly colored spandex. They throw impromptu birthday parties for you when your parents are in Monte Carlo. They are your rock, your safety net, your level head, and your spontaneity. They make life seem less overwhelming and make sure you are never alone in your hour of need. And, of course, if you need a loan to pay for your patches, they can float you one with little to no interest.

-Sarah

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Gimme Kimmy Schmidt’s Fuchsia Lip!

kimmy schmidt

Posted by Lacroix

HOF is proud to welcome another fab contributor, Lacroix of Lacroix the Beauty Blog to give us tips on recreating looks from our favorite shows!

Gimme. Kimmy. Schmidt. Spring. Lip. (say that 3 times fast).

After managing to wind down to 7 tv shows this season (Broad City, Mindy, Sleepy Hollow, New Girl, Empire, Fresh Off the Boat, Blackish, Better Call Saul, Helix), I finally gave into adding yet another show onto my queue. Fortunately (or unfortunately) I burned through Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt this past weekend.

kimmy schmidt head nod
I’m sure you heard about Unbreakable in some way, shape or form. Whether it be Kimmy’s disdain for velcro or your colleague at work who bursts out with “PINOT NOIR” at the desk next to you…oh wait – that’s me.

kimmy streets

These streets have me like…

The blatant display of Spring in every aspect of the show is so aptly illuminated through Kimmy’s style, from her canary yellow cardigan and peter-pan collared shirts to her matching fuchsia pants and lip look.

While Titus Andromedon’s radiance can be achieved naturally (my confidence shines when it’s at least 60 degrees), I need/want Kimmy’s fuchsia lipcolor now!

I did some research, and here are some lipsticks that I recommend:

MAC Cosmetics Lipstick – Flat Out Fabulous

mac fuchsia

Described as a “matte bright plum.”

Chanel Rouge – Coco Jean (454)

chanel fuchsia

Described as “Deep Fuchsia”

Maybelline Color Sensational Creamy Mattes – Faint For Fuchsia

maybelline fuchsia

The colors presented are mere suggestions, in no way shape or form do we profit from the links provided to the product. Feels tested and approved!

“How’d you like to live with Uncle John?” – Gallifrey One 2015, Part 3

gally tardisPosted by Kelly

Just before we left for Los Angeles, Sage sent us the following gif. Caption? “Us by day three.” Accuracy? Astounding.

Con life is a commitment. If you don’t throw your body and soul into it, you’re not doing it right. This is as true for guests as it is for attendees, because while we were “Uptown Funk”-ing you up to the bitter end on Saturday night, John Barrowman was stuck in a bathtub. If he could wake up the next day and command an auditorium full of Whovians, we could certainly get out of bed to watch him. So we did. And when we turned on the television, Burn Gorman was there. You know you’re at Gally when real life is better than your dreams.

Every Christmas is “Last Christmas”

Our day began with “Last Christmas” playing in the big auditorium, which was a nice way to ease gradually into the morning with DEBILITATING FEELS OH HELP CLARA’S OLD BUT SHE’LL NEVER LOOK ANY DIFFERENT TO THE DOCTOR. IT’S TOO EARLY FOR THIS.

“Mummy on the Orient Express” live commentary 

New honorary member of our club Jamie Mathieson took the mic first for a live commentary on his rollicking, Agatha Christie-inspired train adventure, also known as Sage’s entire bucket list. He was moderated by Who’s 50 author Robert Smith?, who stepped up and knocked it out of the park when writing partner (and, yes, one-time Head Over Feels guest contributor) Graeme Burk came down with a cold. (Feel better, Graeme!) Our sparkling kaffeeklatsch conversation with Jamie obviously helped him prepare to discuss the episode, because he hit on a lot of the same points, but with added shippiness.

  • Jamie on the Doctor and Clara’s early conversation in the corridor (but really any scene): “They said there was gonna be no flirting, but you look at this, and it’s sizzling.”
  • He didn’t specify in the script that Clara would wake up on that beach so far from the TARDIS, but obviously the Doctor carried her until he found the perfect spot.
  • Clara’s “I love you” was also not scripted toward the Doctor, so we can thank the director for that glorious moment of tension, and we can thank Kim for asking about it at the kaffeeklatsch in the first place.

In conclusion, Jamie Mathieson is one of us, Jenna and Peter know exactly what they’re doing, the directors ship it, get on this literal space train.

An interview with John Barrowman

We were already girding our loins for Barrowman’s arrival when we saw his tweets.

No objections.

For all of Barrowman’s panel antics, our official theme song courtesy of Eve Myles and Burn Gorman, and the rest of our final day at Gally, head on over to The TV Mouse!