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YANG | This One’s for the Theater Kids

When the trailer for NBC’s new series, Rise, popped up on my news feed a few weeks ago, I cursed Facebook’s advertising algorithm and made a mental note about the pilot airing date simultaneously. I mean, a show about a high school theater troupe putting on Spring Awakening, starring Josh Radnor (How I Met Your Mother) and Auli’i Cravalho (Moana) and produced by Jeffrey Seller (Hamilton)? It practically has my name written all over it. So naturally I had high expectations going in, but I also worried that Rise might fall into the dangerous trap of clichés. And I believe I was right to a certain degree.

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GOULDTHORPE | Big Name Leaves Pixar

Two weeks ago, I wrote about Coco’s win at the Oscars, and reflected on the film and what it meant. A couple days after though, a story broke in the Hollywood Reporter. Darla Anderson, the producer behind Coco and a long time Pixar veteran, announced on March 8 that she would be departing the studio. She released a statement saying, “I’ve had a magical and privileged experience working at Pixar for over two decades. The creativity, imagination, and innovation at Pixar is second to none.

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SWAN | Ithaca and Its Natural Waves

Last year I took an elective that touched on the study of sound design, or the ways in which sound is organized — or unintentionally disorganized — in various settings. A big philosophical topic of interest in this field is the use of headphones by individuals in personal transit. By using headphones, are we effectively silencing the natural soundscape of a place? This initially seems like a rather pedantic point, one best mulled over in a musicology elective. Yet, shouldn’t we be worried about so many people dismantling the collective identity of a place, just as we are worried about climate change or the tearing down of the Nines?

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COLLINS | Humane Monsters and Monstrous Humans

Following Guillermo del Toro’s Best Director win at the Oscars last week, graphics creator La Botica Gráfica posted a GIF celebrating his victory on social media. Something about the Gif captivated me. A cartoon Guillermo Del Toro slowly pivots, hoisting his trophy in front of an unseen crowd. But I was charmed by the characters in the background. Behind del Toro, a sampling of the creatures and monsters that he’s spent his career creating cheer for him.

GUEST ROOM | The San Francisco Sound

Walking down Haight Street in San Francisco, it is hard to see that this place was once the heart of the “hippie scene” in the 1960s. The sidewalks of modern-day San Francisco are littered with boutiques, internet cafés and modern restaurants. Nevertheless, there are a few image-evoking shops and buildings hidden away behind the high-end clothing stores. These smoke shops, novelty emporiums and record stores are the best modern-day glimpses into the times of tie-dye and LSD. During the ’60s, new fashion and new ways of thinking emerged in the Bay area.

GOULDTHORPE | My Thoughts on Coco’s wins at the Oscars

What an absolute shock that Pixar won Best Animated Feature. Okay, so sarcasm doesn’t translate well into text. It was practically certain that Pixar’s Coco would end up with the coveted Oscar. Of course, when half of its competition is Ferdinand and The Boss Baby, it had a relatively easy path forward. Now there has been plenty of discourse about how the animation nominations are selected, and plenty of discourse over whether it’s proper for Disney to win the award so often.

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GUEST ROOM | Has Chance the Rapper’s Chance Passed?

Not only was Acid Rap one of the best hip-hop albums of the decade, but it was a million times better than Coloring Book. For pre-Coloring Book era fans of Chance the Rapper, what I just said comes as no surprise, so allow me to be a little more radical. Coloring Book, quite frankly, fell short. Considering it is one of the most discussed pieces of music in recent years, one would expect something that sounds better. But upon further investigation, it becomes apparent what made Coloring Book so successful: Chance’s accomplishments as a humanitarian, its cost (zero), and the albums all-star cast.

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GUEST ROOM | Lady Bird: A Story of Love and Attention

The number of movies, TV shows and books that attempt to show the transition from high school to college is too large to count. It is always the same story, with most depictions relying on one-dimensional or thematically exhausted protagonists. Then Lady Bird, directed by Greta Gerwig, came out of nowhere and reminded me of the power of authentic characters. Gerwig’s characters stepped outside of stereotypes, not fitting into villain or hero because in actuality, people don’t fit into those roles so easily. It felt different as soon as the movie opened with a Joan Didion quote about California.

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SWAN | Slope Day: A Zero-Sum Game

Slope Day 2018 will be my third experience with the famous Cornellian festival, and so, I feel as though I am now entitled to make a few observations about it. While the artists who play Slope Day change from year to year, most things about it stay the same: a concert will be given,  on the slope during a relatively mild spring day, alcohol will be consumed, free breakfasts will (hopefully) be eaten and merchandise that boasts all of Cornell’s factions and houses will be worn. Yet, the most invariable aspect of Slope Day occurs well before the sun rises on that fateful May day: everyone, every one of you, will complain about the artists chosen to headline it. Alright, maybe not everyone. It seems as though two groups form in response to the headline announcement.

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JONES | A Long, Long Febegans Break

A few weeks ago, former Arts editor Troy Sherman ‘18 and I decided to ruin our February break. Instead of going on a trip with friends, catching up on sleep and work or just spending time thinking and relaxing, we chose to spend a good portion of the break in close quarters, reading pages and pages of near-nonsense. When others asked us what we planned to do over break, we’d respond, with a mix of self-conscious amusement and embarrassment, “We’re going to read Finnegans Wake aloud.”

Why? I’m not entirely sure, looking back, how the seed of this idea was first planted. I’m an avid fan of the Irish writer James Joyce, and I think at some point last semester I realized that if I didn’t read Finnegans Wake — his final and by far most difficult work — now, while I’m in college and have friends like Troy that will do ridiculous, simultaneously self-flagellating and self-indulgent things like this with me, then I might never read it.