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by Jac Kern 06.20.2013
Posted In: Humor, TV/Celebrity, Music, Movies at 11:50 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

Japan is the breeding ground for freaky trends that never (thankfully) make it across the ocean. In fall of 2012 we were introduced to “bagel heads,” a temporary look achieved by injecting saline into the forehead until a dome is formed, then creating a creating a small crater in the center. The end result looked like a bagel or donut implant in your forehead. Totes desirable. Then there's ganguro, a Japanese fashion trend where harajuku meet Snooki, resulting in orangey-tan girls that look freshly plucked from an anime cartoon (tanime?) and now…eyeball licking? Gawker reports conjunctivitis is running rampant in Japanese middle schools with the sudden popularity of kids licking each others' MFing eyeballs. Japan, I will take your cat cafés and affinity for all things tiny (see below) but keep your tongues away from my see-holes.

Portlandia has been renewed for two more seasons!

The Simpsons is definitely ingrained in American popular culture. Once an edgy, almost salacious TV show, Homer & fam are pretty mild in comparison to television’s modern-day exports — animated or otherwise. So it’s no surprise that Universal Studios announced a Simpson’s theme park to open this summer at its Orlando, Fla., resort with a full replica of the fictional town of Springfield. There’s a Krusty Burger, Kwik-E-Mart, Duff Brewery (yes, an actual brewery with beer created exclusively for the park) and, of course, Springfield would not be complete without Moe’s Tavern. Go here to check out photos and video from the newly-opened park.

Twitter Chitter: This week, everyone’s RTing Feminist Taylor Swift

Apparently Hodor (real name: Kristian Nairn), gentle giant and Bran Stark’s personal Segway on Game of Thrones, is actually a real 21st century person and DJ. Check him out!

                                                       If Hodor’s a DJ, Winterfell's a dance floor

Veneers, dwarf darts and chest beating — that’s what you can really look forward to going into The Wolf of Wall Street, Martin Scorsese’s new film based on the story of ‘90s stock market criminal type, Jordan Belfort. OK, that and Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill(‘s freaking veneers) and Matthew McConaughey.

Can Leo’s dance move at 1:34 be the new Harlem Shake?

The song playing in the background is off Kanye West’s new album, Yeezus, which came out Tuesday. Kanye, who apparently is a father now (apparently, because since Kim hasn’t produced so much as a bowel movement in the past decade without an accompanying press release, no one can really be too sure about this baby thing), promoted the new album with an American Psycho-inspired commercial — I am not calling this a short film — starring Scott Disick, Kourtney Kardashian’s baby daddy, and Jonathan Cheban, Kim K’s main butt buddy/occasional frienemy. Behold:

Before American Psycho fans call blasphemy, author Bret Easton Ellis has come out saying he actually wrote the spoof himself.

Mad Men’s penultimate season — arguably its darkest yet — wraps up this Sunday. Now that the merged agencies have agreed on a name and logo, they’re ready to go public! Check out this awesome press release (via Mad Men’s Facebook page) SC&P letter:

 
 
by Jac Kern 06.07.2013
Posted In: Events, Movies, Arts at 12:29 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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Your Weekend To Do List: 6/7-6/9

The 2013 Cincinnati Fringe Festival wraps up this weekend with final performances Friday and Saturday. If you still haven’t checked out any of the freaky, funny, unique performances in this 10th annual fest, go here to check out show reviews and find a full schedule and festival guide.

Cincinnati Rollergirls host their last home game of the season at the Cincinnati Gardens Saturday. The 'girls face Kitchener, Ontario’s Tri-City Roller Girls in a double-header that kicks off at 7 p.m. And it’s Fan Appreciation Night, so expect plenty of free CRG goodies throughout the night! Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door ($15/$17 for courtside seats). Happy Hour (dolla dolla beers, y’all) starts at 6 p.m. Find tickets and more info here.

Last weekend, teams of filmmakers throughout Cincinnati (and across 125 other participating cities throughout the world) participated in the 48 Hour Film Project, requiring them to write, shoot and edit a movie in just two days. On Friday, they received a movie genre, character, prop and a line of dialogue to include in the short film and the rest was up to them — the finished product had to be completed by Sunday. This Sunday, the public can check out the eclectic mix of results at the Thompson House. Screenings take place at 1:30 p.m., 4:15 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and admission is $10 for a single screening group, $30 for the whole day.

Short Vine in Corryville is on its way to becoming the next happenin’ spot in the local arts scene. Don’t believe me? Check out the opening of 71 Gallery (2609 Vine St.) 5-10 p.m. Friday. Local artist Tony Dotson has created the space for outsider artists like himself as well as graphic designers. The gallery’s debut artist is Eye Candy Design agency’s Janet Berberich, who also works on Short Vine. Berberich also helped develop Artbeat on Short Vine, a monthly event that also kicks off Friday. Check out our feature on Dotson and Berberich here.

Date Night Movies return to Washington park Saturdays this Summer but don’t let the event name fool you — anyone can enjoy these free, open-air films. The movies run 9-11 p.m. every Saturday through Aug. 17 (no movies Aug. 3-10). This week’s selection is the 1954 mystery classic, Rear Window. Go here for a full lineup of summer events at Washington Park.

For more stuff to do this weekend, check out our To Do picks full calendar and Rick Pender’s Stage Door for weekend theater offerings.

 
 
by Kenneth McNulty 06.03.2013
Posted In: TV/Celebrity, Travel, Movies, Culture at 11:12 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)
 
 
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Disney World's 'Star Wars' Weekends: A Mega-Fan's View

When our summer interns go on family vacation, we can’t send them off without an assignment. So our resident Star Wars buff, Kenneth, gave us a rundown of Star Wars Weekend at Disney World.

At the age when most children began watching Aladdin, Hercules and Beauty and the Beast, I was lost in a galaxy far, far away. From those days on, my obsession has only grown. So, as you can imagine, I went to Disney World’s Star Wars Weekends years ago before Disney bought the franchise. People have voiced their opinions, which range from: “They’re ruining the series!” to “They’ll make it too kid-ish!” The list goes on. Opinions on that aside, Disney has been doing Star Wars Weekends for a while, since 1997. From what I remembered as a kid, Disney did a great job — I know I had fun.

Coming back after all of these years, with knowledge and wisdom of the series I’d acquired over the years in mind, I walked into Hollywood Studios half asleep from getting to the park so early. Needless to say, it was far more than I could’ve ever imagined. Disney has always been known for its showmanship and they really came through for this year’s festivities.

Disney had an all-star lineup of characters from the films and animated series, and fans could get autographs and watch them in different shows throughout the day. Just to name a few: Ray Park (Darth Maul), James Arnold Taylor (Obi-Wan in the animated series) Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett), Warwick Davis (Wicket) and Ashley Eckstein (Ahsoka Tano from the animated series). The park also had dozens of other characters guests could take pictures with during the day. It was almost guaranteed that around every corner, someone would run into a character from the universe. Whether it was Darth Vader shrouded in Storm Troopers or Tusken Raiders, it was always a treat.

The party carries on through four shows daily Friday-Sunday and change slightly each weekend (this year, the event runs every weekend May 17-June 9). There’s always a show with the special guest of the week like Warwick Davis or Jeremy Bulloch — the talks were just interesting to sit in on. The master of ceremonies and host of each show was James Arnold Taylor, voice actor extraordinaire. He even demonstrated 200 different voices he could do. Impressive, I know. Taylor hosted a talk show as well, where he interviewed the visiting star and Ray Park each day. This could range from being hilarious to quite inspiring depending on the guest. Trust me on that, hearing a story of how Boba Fett messed up his lines on his first day is something to behold.

If a taste for stunts and action are up your alley, Ray Park had his own martial arts show where he went through different fighting styles with an array of weapons. This was also where you learned to loathe the children who got the chance to go on stage and do move sets with the master himself. I’m still seething from that.

Special merchandise could be found at the one stop Star Wars shop near the back of the park: the Darth Mall (clever title if I don’t say so myself). Collectibles, helmets, toys, Disney characters in Star Wars outfits — it was all there. Guests could truly lose themselves in a place like that. If you’re an unabashed fan like myself, you can’t help but spend oodles of money there. I went in wanting something small and spent more than $90. Needless to say, it was neigh impossible to leave without some form of paraphernalia in hand.

Now, to deflect, again, the opinions I may have about Disney buying Star Wars. I have to say, Star Wars Weekends are on par with some conventions I’ve heard of. When Disney gets a hold of something, they’ll flaunt it and make it something everyone can enjoy. These weekends are comparable to a sacred gathering for fans of the series. To see people who enjoy these movies as much as I do having as much fun as me was sublime. The energy there was almost tangible, especially during Memorial Day weekend. The park’s population swelled so much, it almost reached capacity. This weekend was full of characters, big name actors, festivities, themes snacks, souvenirs and ways to immerse fans in the universe itself. Guests could make themselves Storm Troopers — it was awesome. I digress, these weekends were nothing less than magical for me and, from what I could tell, those around me. Where else at this time could you see Boba Fett dance with Princess Leia in her slave outfit?

For this Star Wars fan, Disney did a great job setting the atmosphere of my favorite series. The entire park was flooded with Star Wars music until the park closed. The employees where all nice, the characters excellent and actors incredible, I couldn’t have asked for a better time. The fireworks show was impressive, too — Disney literally ended the festivities with quite a bang.

 
 
by Jac Kern 04.17.2013
Posted In: Music, Movies, Humor, TV/Celebrity at 09:35 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)
 
 
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I Just Can't Get Enough

Jac's roundup of pop culture news and Internet findings

Upon reading recent entertainment news, you may find yourself wondering, “Are awards shows are still happening?” The answer is yes, but not anything that really counts.

The MTV Movie Awards took place Monday night, hosted by the Australian fireball that is Rebel Wilson. She’s stolen scenes in Bridesmaids, Pitch Perfect and Workaholics, and while she made a good host for the second-rate, teen-targeted show, it was kind of disappointing that 90 percent of her jokes were about either her vagina or her weight. Other low points included Taylor Lautner’s attempt at comedy (Side Note: How will the MTV Movie Awards live on now that the Twilight series is over?), Selena Gomez’s possibly offensive Bollywood-inspired performance and the fact that the whole production was essentially a giant lead-up to the premiere of the Hunger Games: Catching Fire trailer (Oh, that’s how the show will continue…).

But there were some quality moments, namely during the Comedic Genius award presentation.


Peter Dinklage presented this prestigious prize to Will Ferrell (they worked together in Elf) and you could tell that The Dinks was thinking, “Don’t these people know I am Tyrion Lannister? I am too good for this shit,” the whole damn time. Ferrell came out in a money-printed suit, dropping classic WF hilarity (aka saying literally anything in his Ron Burgundy voice) and sufficiently creating plenty of buzz for the forthcoming Anchorman sequel. The best part, however, was when a shwasted Aubrey Plaza stormed the stage during Will’s acceptance speech. With glazed-over eyes, a plastic cup of booze and “# The To Do List,” (her upcoming movie) written on her chest, the actress hopped onstage, half-heartedly tried to grab the popcorn award from Will’s hands, quickly realized how this looked to everyone else, then ran back to her seat. Ferrell did not take this opportunity to embarrass her further, as she clearly regretted the stunt immediately.