With so much happening on social media, it’s hard to keep up. Here are the highs and lows of the week, selected by the Amherst Wire Entertainment staff.
Jonathan Kermah, editor
I’m not going to sit here and pretend to be knowledgeable in the genre known as Korean pop, or K-pop, but the Korean boy band BTS are clear stars. On Saturday, the loads of screaming girls heard while they performed on “Saturday Night Live” (the first K-pop group to do so) is evidence enough. This performance marks K-pop as a rising genre in the U.S without a ceiling in sight.
Loser: Kyle Lowry
This is the entertainment winners and losers of the week, but there’s nothing more entertaining than the combination of the NBA Playoffs and NBA Twitter. Just take Saturday’s Toronto Raptors and Orlando Magic game as proof.
Raptors all-star point guard Kyle Lowry, to no one’s surprise, went scoreless in Saturday’s game one loss, and the NBA Twitter community let him have it. Endless memes and gifs flooded the timeline after Lowry’s disappointing performance. Let’s see if he can bounce back, but from an NBA Twitter perspective, let’s hope he doesn’t.
Y’all remember when Kevin Hart blocked Kyle Lowry? pic.twitter.com/frpLJnLvYm
— NBA RETWEET (@RTNBA) April 14, 2019
Trevor Wilson, editor
Winner: Star Wars Fans
Disclaimer: SPOILERS AHEAD
We all knew it was coming, but we’re still going to get fired up about it. On Friday, the teaser trailer for the up-and-coming “Star Wars” movie dropped and it has everybody talking. The trailer features the usual cast of characters: Rey, Finn, Princess Leia and more with voice-over narration from the late Luke Skywalker. Dubbed “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” the trailer left fans buzzing about who the heck the “Skywalker” could be. At the trailer’s conclusion, a laugh, presumed to be The Emperor, plays as the bombastic theme song leads into the trailer’s outro. With a release date of Christmas Day, we’ll have to wait for all of our questions to be answered.
Loser: This Cop
In a video that surfaced this week, a police officer was captured absolutely berating Florida rapper Lil Pump. Dated to Lil Pump’s arrest back in December of last year, the teenage rapper can be seen trying to defend himself against a belligerent police officer. The officer repeatedly screams “calm down” literally inches away from the rapper’s face, making it an uncomfortable scene for everyone involved.
I certainly recognize and am appreciative of the things police officers do to protect communities, but this is simply a power trip. This officer seems to want to arrest Lil Pump so bad, and the way that he talks to the kid makes it all more apparent. To me, it appears the officer is trying to pry a negative reaction out of the rapper. If there’s any light in this bizarre interaction, it’s that Lil Pump actively tries to remain calm throughout the whole ordeal.
Kacey Connolly, writer
Winner: Taylor Swift
I know it’s easier to hate Taylor Swift rather than love her sometimes, especially if you’re team Kanye, however, the pop superstar donated $113,000 this week to the Tennessee Equality Project. For those of you who don’t know, this is an advocacy group that has been fighting various anti-LGBT bills in the state. In 2018, Swift voiced her political opinion for the first time in her 15 year career advising her followers to vote for Phil Bredesen for Tennessee’s Senate. I guess Swift’s participation in the fight for equality in America stems further than artsy Instagram posts which is more than most other celebs can say.
Loser: Felicity Huffman
Felicity Huffman on pleading guilty for her involvement in the college admissions scandal. pic.twitter.com/p5BetIljTB
— Entertainment Tonight (@etnow) April 8, 2019
Felicity Huffman and husband William H. Macy were one of the many Hollywood stars caught in the college scandal. Huffman personally paid $15,000 to admissions consultant William Singer in order to increase her daughter’s SAT scores. As of Monday, Huffman and 13 others have all pleaded guilty in what is now known as the “Varsity Blues” college scandal. Who knew Huffman could turn her own life into a personal episode of “Desperate Housewives.”
Julia Donohue, writer
Winner: Kim Kardashian
Every once in a while, the Kardashians drift into obscurity. They’re still lingering in the collective consciousness but they’re not mainstream news. It stays placid but for a moment until one of them is pregnant, one of them has done something controversial or one of them is cheated on by their fiance who left his previous partner for her. There is something congruous about their trends.
Well, the Kardashians are back again but for once, it’s academic? Kim Kardashian wants to be a lawyer, a criminal justice lawyer. Becoming infamously private since a traumatic Paris robbery, Kardashian announced her law school plans in a Vogue interview on April 10 and 73 Questions with Vogue on April 11. It may not be apart of her brand, but it does make sense.
Her father infamously represented O.J. Simpson when he was accused of murdering his wife and a waiter only to turn around and testify against him in a civil suit. Robert Kardashian’s involvement in the O.J. Simpson case would go on to be portrayed by David Schwimmer, Ross from “Friends,” in “The People V. O.J. Simpson” (2016) and is partially why the Kardashians have gained notoriety.
In May of 2018, Kim K was spotted in the Oval Office talking to President Trump about the sentence commutation of Alice Johnson, who eventually was released on a nonviolent drug crime in Tennessee. Last September, Kardashian attended a summit on clemency and incarceration rates, particularly for nonviolent offenders.
People might not expect a lot from Kardashian, but she could very well be a real life Elle Woods:
kim k studying to be a lawyer is the best live action remake of legally blonde i’ve ever heard of
— gill (@frostgilllian) April 10, 2019
Loser: Allison Mack
This story is really weird. It starts with “Smallville,” a CW series based on Superman which was fairly popular from 2001, gradually losing steam until its end in 2011.
At inception, it was fairly popular but has no relevance in the cultural zeitgeist. It didn’t change the cultural tone of television, an important factor in becoming memorable (see The Sopranos and Breaking Bad), and none of the actors who starred in it went on to greater fame.
Well, one star kind of did, but not the type of fame they were probably looking for. Allison Mack, who portrayed Clark Kent’s best friend Chloe Sullivan, is in the news this week. On April 9, she pleaded guilty to a major role in a sex cult. She coerced vulnerable individuals into joining NXIVM, a sex cult started in 1998 fronted as a human rights organization.
Oliver Sampson, writer
Winner: Los Angeles
On Thursday, all of Los Angeles came together to honor the life of late rapper and community activist Nipsey Hussle. Hussle’s memorial service was held at the Staples Center and tens of thousands of fans attended. The tickets were made free online in order to ensure that all those who loved Hussle could attend. The crowd was so large that the service had to be delayed a few hours due to a security issue. Nevertheless, the outpouring of support for Hussle is amazing and shows how much he meant to the people in this community.
Hussle was a voice of hope for the black community in low-income Los Angeles neighborhoods and started many businesses and programs that worked to elevate people in his community. This included a strip mall in his neighborhood that was home to a clothing store and barbershop, where he employed people from his community. He also started Vector 90, a working space for local entrepreneurs and provided STEM opportunities for young students. To put how much Hussle meant in perspective, people have been comparing his memorial service to that of Tupac Shakur and Michael Jackson. Los Angeles showed that Hussle’s legacy and impact will never die. Nipsey forever.
Loser: Kodak Black
More Nipsey Hussle news. Kodak Black made extremely questionable comments last Saturday after the death of Hussle the previous week. Referring to Hussle’s long-time girlfriend Lauren London, he stated in an Instagram live video he’d “be the best man I can be for her” and “I’ll give her a whole year, she might need a whole year to be crying and s*** for him.” This is completely insensitive and received plenty of backlash from rappers who were close to Hussle, including The Game, T.I. and Snoop Dogg.
TI has a message for Kodak Black regarding his comments about Lauren London and Nipsey Hussle pic.twitter.com/Aad9bslqSF
— BallerAlert (@balleralert) April 6, 2019
T.I. was the most vocal, and over the last few days, he and Kodak have been going back and forth over social media. T.I. even decided to take down Kodak’s art installation from T.I.’s Trap Music Museum. Kodak responded to the negative response with an insincere apology where he didn’t really admit any wrongdoing.
This is not a good look for Kodak and adds to the controversy surrounding him. Earlier this week, Kodak was officially charged with sexual assault, stemming from an alleged incident in South Carolina after a concert that involved a 16-year-old girl. He will likely have to go back to South Carolina this year to face these charges. After all of this, the #cancelkodak has been flying around over social media this week.
Email Jonathan at [email protected], or follow him on Twitter @JKermah98.
Email Trevor at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @TrevorWilsonOG.
Email Kacey at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @kaceyconnolly1.
Email Julia at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter @toomanyjulias.
Email Oliver at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @_theycallmeo.