Blog · Lauryn's Picks

Five Things: April 2018

Five Things is a series where I list five things I liked, loved, or geeked out about during the month.

In no particular order, here are this month’s five things…

1. Alden Ehrenreich and Donald Glover visited the Star Wars Show and spoke with Andi Gutierrez all about Solo and it was pretty great. I love the fact that Glover said he bought a pizza and went home to watch Empire after he found out he was cast as Lando. Too real.

2. Looking For Leia reached their funding goal and will now officially be able to move on into post-production. Yay! It was really cool to see so many people support the project and I cannot wait to watch the docu-series in its final form later this year!

3. A new featurette for Solo: A Star Wars Story was released yesterday and it made me really excited to watch the film. I have come a long way from the time it was announced to the film now being 1 month away from release. It’s going to be great, and if not great, FUN.

4. Avengers: Infinity War came out just a couple of days ago and is now the biggest opening weekend of all time! It surpassed The Force Awakens and I ain’t even mad. The movie was fun and surprising and I’m still thinking about it. Highly recommend.

5. Lastly, I wanted to give a shout out to Vaginal Fantasy. What the heck is Vaginal Fantasy? Well, it was a fantasy romance book club hosted by Felicia Day, Veronica Belmont, Bonnie Burton, and Kiala Kazebee that officially ended this month. Every month, for six years they read a book and discussed it live on Google Hangouts. If you’re interested in checking it out, every hangout has been archived on YouTube and the book club is still going on at Goodreads. Felicia, Veronica, Bonnie, and Kiala were really cool and funny to listen to, I’m going to miss them a lot!

 

Featured Image: Lucasfilm

Blog · Lauryn's Picks

Five Things: March 2018

Five Things is a series where I list five things I liked, loved, or geeked out about during the month.

In no particular order, here are this month’s five things…

1. This month belonged to Star Wars Rebels. The show came to an end in early March and Lucasfilm was kind enough to invite fans over to watch the series finale and have a Q&A with the cast and creator Dave Filoni. It was really great to hear everyone’s reactions and get some insight into the future of the Ghost Crew.

2. The Last Jedi novelization came out this month! I have not finished it because I’m busy with school, but I love what I have read so far. It’s a great companion to the film and offers a better understanding into the motivations of our beloved characters. It’s also a really pretty book!

3. Forces of Destiny is back with a whole new batch of episodes for season 2. The shorts are really cute and feature PORGS. Yes, PORGS.

4. Filming for Captain Marvel has begun and Brie Larson has been giving us a sneak peek into her training and research for her amazing role as Carol Danvers. I loved the comics written by Kelly Sue DeConnick and I cannot wait for this film!

5. Lastly, The Director and the Jedi is fucking wonderful. This documentary is all about the making of The Last Jedi and gives us an inside look into how Rian Johnson pulled it together. If you liked the movie or love filmmaking in general, you need to watch this doc. It’s available now as a bonus feature on The Last Jedi DVD!

 

Blog · Lauryn's Picks · TV

The 7 Best Historical Fiction & Fantasy Shows (IMHO)

Hey!

Have I ever mentioned that I have a thing for historical fiction? Well, I do.

I love period dramas and medieval fantasy shows. Like, I eat that shit up. I thought I’d list a few of my favorites because nothing’s better than sharing what you love, right?

Without further ado and in no particular order, here are my favorite historical fiction & fantasy shows….

1. Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries (2012)

This. Show. Is. So. Good. A couple of years ago I saw a gift set of Miss Fisher on tumblr and checked the show out on Netflix. I binged it in three days and fell in love with the 1920s. It’s a really, really great mystery show. I stopped watching Sherlock (2010) after season 3 so this filled my mystery hole quite nicely.

2. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norell (2015)

Based on the popular novel (that I have yet to read) by Susanna Clarke, this miniseries is funny and weird and I looked forward to every episode each week when it was airing. I’d recommend it to anyone who’s looking for something light and magical and takes place in the 19th century. I’d watch the hell out of this again if it were available on a streaming service.

3. Downton Abbey (2010)

Before people were live-tweeting Game of Thrones on the reg, people were live-tweeting Downton Abbey. I’m pretty sure at one point it did become a cultural phenomenon, but only a handful actually stuck around until the very end. This doesn’t mean it sucked, it just didn’t cater to the US as much as it did to the UK. Anyways, it holds a very special place in my heart and I still think about some of the characters to this day. If you want to see beautiful costumes from the early 20th century and walk around your house pretending you’re upperclass aristocrat this is the perfect show!

4. Outlander (2014)

Men in kilts! That’s it. That’s the whole show. To be honest, it bothers me that not enough people watch this show! I never see people talking about it online as much as they do other shows. It’s a hot and heavy romance featuring the political history of Scotland, men in kilts, and a dash of time travel. I live-tweet this show when it airs and I don’t plan on stopping.

5. Pride & Prejudice (1995)

Sticking to the romance, I present to you my favorite Pride & Prejudice adaptation. I love the Joe Wright film from 2005 and as a matter of fact it was my first introduction to P&P. From there I read the book and then I was recommended the 1995 miniseries, which I was a bit hesitant about due to google image searches and the fact that I didn’t find Colin Firth VERY APPEALING. But all that changed when I actually sat down and watched the damn thing. It is really good and yes, I fell in love with Colin Firth, as one does. I live for Mr. Darcy memes on tumblr so sit yourself down and watch this and join in on the fun! It’s romance in the 18th/19th century with an english countryside backdrop *swoon*.

6. Black Sails (2014)

I LOVE PIRATES. I love the history of pirates and rebellion in general, so this show was right up my alley. Black Sails gives us a realistic look at piracy in the 18th century and really interesting, complicated characters. I’m sad it didn’t get as much recognition when it aired, but it’s totally worth checking out. I will say that season 1 was slow but every episode of season 2 was fucking amazing and it just kept getting better! I am a former Pirates of the Caribbean fan (FORMER) and I used to say that if you grew up with PotC, Black Sails is your graduation gift.

7. The Crown (2016)

My current BAE. The Crown is phenomenal! While it is based on Queen Elizabeth II’s life, it’s not entirely fact and therefore qualifies as historical fiction. I love learning about the monarchy and while I’d prefer 17th century monarchy any day of the week, the 20th century monarchy is actually fascinating and wasn’t that long ago. I’m always googling what actually happened after every episode I watch of this show. If you’re interested in the life of Queen Elizabeth or love the present day royal family, check this show out!

Honorable mentions:

Game of Thrones (2011)

Vikings (2013)

Marco Polo (2014)

Penny Dreadful (2014)

The Man in the High Castle (2015)

Mad Men (2007)

I know there are many shows that I haven’t mentioned and that’s probably because I haven’t seen them yet or they escaped my mind. If you think I’d like something that’s not on this list, please feel free to recommend it! I do tend to like higher quality shows with bigger budgets, but if it has a good story and great writing then I’m ALL IN.

 

Blog · Lauryn's Picks

Five Things: February 2018

Five Things is a series where I list five things I liked, loved, or geeked out about during the month.

In no particular order, here are this month’s five things…

1. Natalie Portman returned to SNL with a hilarious rap about the last 12 years of her life and I loved it so much. Say something about the motherfucking prequels, bitch.

2. The Solo: A Star Wars Story teaser trailer premiered earlier in the month and it was amazing! I have been skeptical about this film in the past, but I am officially ready to go back to the galaxy far, far away…

3. One of my favorite interviews this month was The Sucklord on the Steele Wars podcast. I wasn’t familiar with his work, but after that interview I had a better understanding of the bootleg toy industry and was super inspired by this guy. He turned his failures into success. Check out this episode!

4. Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. You probably heard or saw their names at least once this month. The ice skating pair from Canada made their return to the Pyeongchang Olympics and oh my… their performance to Roxanne from Moulin Rouge was sexy and amazing and won them the gold for Ice Dancing.

5. Star Wars Rebels is coming to an end. Every episode since the latter half of season four premiered has been beautiful and thrilling. The most recent episode “A World Between Worlds” was galaxy altering for many reasons. It is a must watch for any Star Wars fan. The Force is weird and wonderful and I only want it to get weirder and more wonderful.

Blog · Lauryn's Picks

Five Things: January 2018

Five Things is a series where I list five things I liked, loved, or geeked out about during the month.

In no particular order, here are this month’s five things…

1. Every week I’ve been tuning in to the Overwatch League and it’s been so fun to watch along with my SO. I started playing the game last year and I’ve developed such an appreciation for the teams and esports in general.

2. This episode of the Star Wars Show is a must watch for anyone who went to go see The Last Jedi. I absolutely love (worship?) the Lucasfilm Story Group and every time one of them speaks you just gotta shut up and listen.

3. My somewhat new obsession is collecting enamel pins. I used to buy them when I would go to Disney World, but more recently I have been thrown into a world of pin-makers online and one of my favorites is Lantern Pins. If you’re interested in Star Wars or Disney inspired pins, she has a really great collection.

4. I’ve been watching a new anime called Violet Evergarden and while I won’t know if the story pays off in the end, it is SO BEAUTIFUL. The music and the visuals should be more than enough to check out!

5. Lastly, my new favorite Star Wars podcast is Skytalkers. I could probably write an essay as to why I love it so much, but to keep it short, these young women are around my age and provide a new and refreshing take on Star Wars that I’ve been wanting for so long. These are the friends I wish I had when I was 11 and falling hard for these movies.

Blog · Lauryn's Picks

5 Things of the Month: October 2017

New series! At the end of every month I plan on compiling a list of 5 things that made me geek out. I hope this list introduces people to things they may not be familiar with or may have missed throughout the month. It’s a nice way to get the word on the street and to remember all the cool and nerdy things out there.

These are the 5 Things that I geeked out about in the month of October!

1. I couldn’t make this list without mentioning the new Star Wars: The Last Jedi trailer! I won’t go into detail, but it was pretty spectacular. Oh, and tickets are available now!

2. I may have found a new hobby thanks to this really cool calligraphy Instagram account @_jwlettering. Her wax seal videos are oddly satisfying and I plan on investing in some wax stamps very soon.

3. Pitchfork published an article called The Story of Goth in 33 Songs and as a music nerd I couldn’t resist. If you’re feeling gothy check out their playlist.

4. So, I need to also mention that the last season of Star Wars Rebels premiered this month and it is off to a fantastic start. I am dreading the ending of this series.

5. Lastly, in honor of the spooky month that is October, I finished all of Netflix’s Stranger Things season 2 in 9 hours. Don’t judge me. Also, Bob forever.

 

Blog · Geek & Pop Culture · Lauryn's Picks · TV

The Anime We Saw That Day

A couple of years ago, back in high school, I became fully aware of anime and the culture that surrounds the popular art form. When I was young I had only heard of the term, but never really associated it with shows like Dragon Ball or Sailor Moon. To me those shows were just cartoons that I watched on Cartoon Network early in the mornings. In high school, I had friends who watched anime regularly and who would suggest shows here and there, however I never really took the time to check them out. I simply just preferred live action TV shows and I also felt that reading subtitles took away from my full enjoyment and understanding of what I was watching. Yeah, I was wrong.

Fast forward to 2016. My SO suggested I try to experience anime again and this time with an open mind. We started with Your Name, which also happens to be the fourth highest grossing film of all time in Japan and considered one of the greatest anime films ever made. I instantly fell in love with it. I am still very new to anime but as a movie buff, this film is absolutely wonderful and I still think about it to this day.

After Your Name, I moved on to actual shows. This is where I attempt to get any readers who have not seen an anime before to check out some handpicked shows that I think are amazing.

As an entryway anime the SO recommended, Attack on Titan, and it did not disappoint. Yes, Attack on Titan is extremely popular, but it deserves that recognition. I consider it the Game of Thrones of the anime world. Again, I am new so if your opinion differs, that’s fine! The show is epic and ongoing and there is so much happening and I happen to love most of the characters (Mikasa forever). As you can tell, I’m a fan. Season 2 just ended and it was fucking amazing. Go catch up in time for season 3, which is slated for a 2018 release!

The next anime is a real tearjerker and a show that will make you miss all the qualities of being a kid. Anohana: The Flower We Saw That Day is the show that made me cry a lot, almost every episode, seriously. I related with it in the sense that I was a young kid who had a group of friends and we had great times, but all that ended and everyone grew up. The show deals with themes of innocence, grief, regret, and unrequited love all within a group of young high school kids. As I watched the show I kept thinking about the ending quote of the film Stand By Me, which goes “I never had any friends later on like the ones I had when I was twelve. Jesus, does anyone?” I highly recommend this show!

Terror in Resonance is phenomenal. The first episode had me hooked. I kept telling my SO that the show reminded me of something that would be on HBO. He did not get that reference. The tone of the show is very serious and feels very realistic in many ways. Honestly, its just really, really good TV. Worth a watch if you want to stay away from the goofy, fantasy centric anime.

My last recommendation is the brilliant Your Lie in April. I will admit this show took me about two episodes to really fall in love. It’s sad and in some ways predictable but it delivers the whole way through. I like to compare it to a Nicholas Sparks/John Green novel that really tugs at your heartstrings. It’s a romantic drama that will make you cry and make you wish you stuck with your piano lessons when you were younger.

As of July 2017, I have completed 7 shows and seen 4 movies. I am still extremely new to the scene and I am taking my time. I have yet to see at least one Studio Ghibli film, so I have a lot of gems to uncover. Before I started watching anime I had been in a TV show rut, nothing was really doing it for me so the change of pace is really nice. I also LOVE the fact that I don’t have to worry about catching up with 7 seasons of a show, 2 of which I will have to suffer through (looking at you American TV shows). Most Anime is short and ends where it needs to end.

Hopefully, I have convinced a few of you to check out some anime and give it a chance. There are really great shows and movies out there that I think people who are used to American TV shows will love and appreciate.