Photo by Arti Kh on Unsplash

This Thursday is my mom’s first birthday since she passed and I don’t know how I’m supposed to recognize it. Ignoring it feels harsh, celebrating it feels “too soon” and acknowledging it sounds too painful. So, I figured that writing about it couldn’t hurt even though I can’t seem to even *think* about her without bursting into tears.

Almost three months ago, my life changed forever. I was en route to a new job, suffering through the second day of a long road trip.

That morning, I awoke to my sister informing me that our mom was admitted into the…


Gwyneth Paltrow, nonstop drama, and a healthy dose of country-pop, “Country Strong” was a perfect movie.

(Photo Credit: Screen Gems)

“Loves, lives, and ambitions collide in the high stakes world of big-time country music stardom.”

Country Strong tells the story of the fictional country star Kelly Canter (Gwyneth Paltrow) who has fallen from the high graces of her public pedestal and landed herself in rehab for her struggle with alcoholism — which led to the accidental death of her unborn child.

Her husband James Canter (Tim McGraw) is her disgruntled manager. He decides to pull her out of rehab a month early to start her comeback tour. …


I’ve never met a young adult drama that I didn’t like.

Element Pictures

“I guess we just misunderstood each other.”

The Irish drama Normal People chronicles the story of two young adults, around the ages of 18 to 24, and their profound love and admiration for one another. The television show is based on Sally Rooney’s novel of the same name and consists of 12 episodes. Premiering earlier this year in April, the show has bagged itself four Prime-time Emmy nominations and high critic ratings, earning a 90% on Rotten Tomatoes.

Normal People is centered around two characters, Marianne and Connell, played by new “internet-faved” actors, Daisy Edgar-Jones and Paul Mescal.

The two characters find themselves embodying every fandom’s favorite…


What’s something that Chris Evans, Ted Cruz, and Ted Yoho all have in common?

Image of actor Chris Evans by Roberto E. Rodriguez, Getty Images.

Back in July, Captain America actor Chris Evans launched his political organization, “A Starting Point” which is an online “civic engagement platform” developed with the help of actor and director Mark Kassen and entrepreneur Joe Kiani.

The organization’s mission is, “to create a bipartisan channel of communication and connectivity between Americans and their elected officials with the goal of creating a more informed electorate.”

Esquire reported that in light of the release of A Starting Point, Chris Evans would be backing off of his Trump criticisms, disclosing to an interviewer, “I’m going to take my foot off the gas [of…


A “way-too-personal” track-by-track review

Alanis Morissette pictured by Shelby Duncan

As Alanis Morissette’s self-proclaimed biggest fan, Such Pretty Forks in the Road has been one of my most anticipated albums of the last year. It comes eight years after her 2012 album Havoc and Bright Lights and 25 years after the release of her most-iconic Jagged Little Pill album.

Although this new album has been in the works since 2017, it was announced at the end of last year that it would be dropping on May 1 — a release date that was then pushed back about three months, to the tail-end of July, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

After…


A Look at Terry Zwigoff’s 2001 Coming of Age Film

Photo Credit: United Artists

The slow story of a friendship unraveling at every hinge is at the heart of the 2001 movie Ghost World. It is clear from the first fifteen minutes that the two friends, Enid and Rebecca, played by Thora Birch and Scarlett Johansson, are not on the same page — however, they have one thing in common: A zero-tolerance attitude towards people and general nonsense.

“You’ll get totally sick of all the creeps, and losers, and weirdos.”

“But those are our people.”

Ghost World is a highly-acclaimed film directed by Terry Zwigoff and written by Zwigoff and Daniel Clowes, the original…


Hamilton and Blackness on Broadway

Sara Krulwich/The New York Times

The musical Hamilton is relying on its fanbase to defend the show’s harmful and problematic narrative among its theatrical release on the Disney+ streaming platform.

Although the complications with the Hamilton production are very nuanced, activists and fans who have chosen to highlight them are being gaslit by overzealous supporters (“stans”) of the show, including entertainment journalists and actors.

It is strange for these conversations about race and entertainment to be silenced during the height of the Black Lives Matter movement resurfacing.

Rewind

Hamilton is a musical that premiered off-Broadway in 2015 at the Public Theater in New York City. …


A discussion on performative allyship

Photo by Michelle Ding on Unsplash

Black Lives Matter has dominated the internet — the hashtags are seen everywhere, major corporations are being coerced into individualizing statements regarding the movement, and white social media influencers are finding themselves at a stalemate concerning what they should be posting on their grids.

Now that the Black Lives Matter movement has reached new heights, it is garnering attention from celebrities, major news sources, and people all around the world — despite the movement being centered in America, we are seeing allies and protests in Tokyo, London, and Paris, among many others. …


The “thumpa thumpa” continues.

“So the “thumpa thumpa” continues. It always will. No matter what happens. No matter who’s president. As our lady of Disco, the divine Miss Gloria Gaynor has always sung to us: We will survive.”


A Look at the First Episode of HBO’s Newest Limited Series

Mark Ruffalo as Thomas and Dominick Birdsey. Photo: HBO

I Know This Much Is True, an HBO drama written and directed by Derek Cianfrance, premiered Sunday night and quickly took the media by storm, garnering radiant reviews from established critics among various platforms.

The six-episode limited series is based on a 1998 novel of the same name by Wally Lamb (also an executive producer of the series). The show features Mark Ruffalo as identical twins, Dominick and Thomas Birdsey, the latter of the two is a sufferer of schizophrenia. In episode one, he has a violent breakdown in a public library, leaving his brother to deal with the aggressive…

Raven Brunner

Entertainment and culture writer. She/her. Twitter and Instagram: @raventbrunner

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store