Archive | June, 2011

More monsters, less dead women.

8 Jun

Remember the days when music videos were mostly party scenes, choreographed routines and boy bands dancing in the rain? Well times have changed and in recent weeks we’ve been introduced to some shocking, and arguably pretty darn offensive music videos. Thanks to Kanye West and Jay-Z we can now enjoy (or be appalled by) their “Monster” music video that has recently hit the airwaves and raised more than a few eyebrows. So here, for your consideration, are some preliminary impressions of “Monster” by Kanye, featuring Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj, Rick Ross and Bon Iver. Be warned before you click on the link, this is probably (most definitely) not safe viewing for work.

I want to like Kanye. I really do. But I’ve never quite been able to forgive him after his Taylor Swift VMA microphone thievery. While I think that he’s extremely talented musically, I can’t say that he’s done much to impress in the personality department lately. And this video does not help his cause. Monster starts out with a written warning that the following content is not intended to be misogynistic; it is an art piece and should be taken as such, which is basically like saying: You’re about to see some hard-core woman-hating imagery, but my lawyers and PR-team strongly advised me to include this warning so that you won’t make a big deal about it. So yeah, enjoy this “art”.

Anyway, we immediately move in to a shot of a bunch of women who appear to be dead, hanging by their necks in their underwear. Then we get to the shot where Kanye is in bed with 2 probably-dead women whose limbs he is adjusting in to various poses. We also get to see Kanye holding a woman’s severed head, various sexy-lady monsters, a guy with his guts being eaten, and a double-shot of Nicki Minaj (who has just as much screen time as Kanye or Jay-Z, and is quite enjoyable). At the end of the almost 6 minute video, you’re just kind of left wondering “Ok, so you’re a monster, that part is cool, but why on earth did you have to put so many dead girls in there?” I’m simultaneously kind of offended and underwhelmed. Does a semi-nude, deceased female really pass for art these days?

So here’s the plus side – the song is not bad. Assholery aside, Kanye can certainly put together some clever lyrics, and the same can be said for Jay-Z. It stands to reason that when their powers combine, they’re going to come up with some pretty good tracks (although I had to cringe at the rhyme-pairing of ‘sarcophagus’ and ‘esophagus’, and the less than pleasant phrase in which the words are delivered). I understand that the video was intended to shock and spark discussion, because that’s what good “art” does. But they were trying to walk a fine line between controversial and offensive, and ended up somewhere closer to simply distasteful. Although maybe that’s just my bias, as a woman. Ultimately, the video ends with the lyrics “I crossed the line, and I’ll let god decide.” Crossed the line indeed. I know I’m no expert at video directing, and far be it from me to try to stifle anyone’s creative process, but here are some words of advice for next time: more monsters, less dead women.

Are Whitney Port and Ben Nemtin over? Yes they are.

7 Jun

Update: In Touch Weekly and Perez Hilton are now both confirming that Whitney and Ben have indeed split. Celebuzz (where Whitney hosts her website) confirmed to me last week that the photo of the guy in the post below plays for the other team. So clearly we don’t have him to blame for this. But check out the post to see why our gut feeling on this one was right. Sad sad sad.

Now I realize this is the fluffiest of the fluff. But recently my spidey senses have been tingling and I fear that my favourite MTV couple Whitney Port and Ben Nemtin have split.

Ben Nemtin and Whitney Port. Get cuter!

For those of you who aren’t in the loop Whitney Port was Lauren Conrad’s office mate and confidante on The Hills. After proving that she was more than just a pretty face – and an amazing head of hair – Whitney got her own show, The City. The City chronicled her move from LA to New York where she pursued her dream of becoming a fashion designer. On the show Whitney’s squeaky clean image earned her little luck in the love department. Her relationship with Tamarama singer Jay bit the dust and our dear little Whitney was left to keep her eye on the prize. Her clothing line.

Lucky for her she struck gold and Whitney Eve has done exceptionally well. Along with a hot collection, Whitney also penned the book “True Whit” which is a guide to 20 – something women transitioning from college to the real working world. Whitney always seemed extremely grounded and determined to earn her place in the fashion world by working hard instead of leaking topless pictures of herself. In a world full of terrible role models Whitney is someone young women can look up to and relate to.

Next we have Ben Nemtin. Ben is from Victoria, BC and along with three of his University friends filmed a documentary called “The Buried Life”. The premise was that these four guys would travel across North America in a purple bus named “Penelope” and check things off their list of 100 things to do before they die. But rather than just complete these tasks, they also connect with people along the way and help them complete one of the things on their list. They have done everything from built skate parks to reuniting a homeless man with his daughter.

The show got picked up by MTV in 2009 in an effort to shift away from the otherwise smutty content. The Buried Life boys are changing lives across North America and are incredibly adorable to boot. Oh yea, did we mention they’re Canadian? What’s not to love!

SO you can only image my excitement when these two MTV starlets crossed paths and started canoodling in front of the cameras. Pictures were popping up everywhere of the duo and Whitney was more than happy to post picture of Ben at Port family events on her blog. They seemed to be the perfect match.  Tall, gorgeous, hard working and also used to the crazy schedule that filming a television show brings.

Now we come back to my spidey senses.  Lately I’ve noticed that Whitney has been out on the town an awful lot. She is frequently

Picture posted on Whit's blog, June 2nd. That boy is NOT Ben Nemtin. That is a boy with something to hide.

tweeting about the next girls night out and recently posted a picture of her locked arms with a Justin-Bobby lookalike. So where is Benny? The Buried Life is filming right now so obviously Ben is on the road, but something is not right.

Last night was the icing on the cake. The 2011 MTV Movie awards. All of young Hollywood’s finest come out to play – especially the kids of MTV. Ben Nemtin tweeted “Heading to mtv movie awards. Goin w this guy.” But no, it wasn’t Whitney it was one of the Buried Life boys. WHERE IS WHITNEY?

The awards show was held at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California. A mere hop, skip and jump from her home. Not to mention Whitney being in the fashion industry, loves an opportunity to get her name out there, and show off Ben as her arm candy. But she was nowhere to be found last night.

This can only mean one thing. They’ve broken up. I’ve Googled my little heart out and found nothing. I’m not sure why I care so much but I guess it’s because it was nice to finally see two people putting their fame to good use and not behaving like donkeys.

So what do you think? Do bad schedules and lack of on-camera appearances have me jumping to conclusions? Or am I sadly right on this one. One thing is for sure. If Whitney has left the lovely Ben Nemtin for the musical stylings of Tamarama’s Jay – she needs to call me, and we need to talk this one through.

If you Wannabe nostalgic…

6 Jun

So over the weekend I got an amazing singing birthday card featuring the cast of High School Musical. Now I realize that High School Musical is really not my vintage but as a sucker for all things Family Channel I must admit I’ve seen them all.

This card sparked an interesting conversation: Things we collected as children. As a kid we all had something that we became a tad obsessed with and held near and dear to our hearts. For some it was hockey cards, others it was My Little Pony, and for the young celeb-obssesed children like myself it was Spice Girls memorabilia.

An entire, sealed box of Spice Girls gum.

Because the Spice Girls were an international phenomenon, there was, of course, a wide variety of collectables that came along with them. Chuppa Chup’s really cashed in on a collection of lolipops which Baby Spice was always seen eating, but my personal favourite was their Spice Girls bubble gum.

One day, while shopping at a local British grocer, I came across Spice Girls bubble gum. Now beyond the novelty of just being named after the famed group, each piece of gum came with a Spice Girls sticker. Think Double Bubble but WAY cooler. My love for collecting these stickers started off slowly. My leftover change from buying things like “The Clapper” to turn my remote-less TV on and off went toward buying a couple of pieces a week, and the stickers were placed on binders and scribblers that I felt could use a little pizzaz.

Then one day it occurred to me. How would I ever have the complete collection of these stickers without making a major commitment? I needed to stop sticking stickers on things and get my act together. I inquired to said British grocer on how I could get my hands on an entire box of Spice Girls gum. He named his price and I started to go into overdrive to do chores earning some extra cash to purchase this sacred box of gum.

Hands down my favourite Spice Girls sticker.

Finally, after what felt like months of pinching pennies, the day had come when I could proudly walk into the store to buy my very own ENTIRE box of Spice Girls gum. Being the mildly neurotic child that I was, I opened every single piece of gum, removed the stickers, re-wrapped the gum, and organized my stickers by individual group member and group shots into a clear box meant for hardcore crafters. You know the ones I’m talking about, right? Mostly used for holding your gimp or thread to make sweet friendship bracelets?

So where is this sacred collection now you ask? Likely locked in the attic of my Mom’s house. Which is probably best as most of you don’t know where she lives and won’t flock to her house to catch a glimpse of this collection, now almost 15 years old and valued at over $10.00 US according to Ebay.