Blog featuring information and commentary on music, books, movies and more. From new, aspiring author Lauren Walker.
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The anticipation and excitement over the Gilmore Girls revival, A Year in the Life, was almost palpable leading into its release a few weeks ago. I myself was extremely anxious to get back from my Thanksgiving vacation so I could watch every GG moment on my TV rather than on the small iPad screen I had with me, though I was tempted to sneak a peek more than once. There were so many questions from...
The anticipation and excitement over the Gilmore Girls revival, A Year in the Life, was almost palpable leading into its release a few weeks ago. I myself was extremely anxious to get back from my Thanksgiving vacation so I could watch every GG moment on my TV rather than on the small iPad screen I had with me, though I was tempted to sneak a peek more than once. There were so many questions from the initial series I was dying to have answered, and while the show did not disappoint on that front, there were several key things it left out or glossed over. Not only that, it left fans with a slew of new questions! There are several lists like this floating around, but here’s my look at the old and the new mysteries in the Gilmore world:
What was missing:
- Sookie’s baby: We only got a meager dose of show staples Sookie and Jackson as it was, so perhaps there wasn’t time to work this in, but in the seventh season of the show Sookie is pregnant with baby number three. Before the finale, we don’t find out the kid’s name or even gender. Who is this mystery character that’s now around nine years old?
- Lane and Zack: I’m sorry, but these characters been done wrong. Poor Lane had all these dreams, and not that kids have to be the end of it, but they really just petered her out when they married her off and knocked her up. So what is she doing now? We see scant peeks into her life in the revival, but no indication of what she really does. Was that shot of her at Kim’s Antiques the answer? Is Hep Alien still just a garage band? They could have given us a bit more here.
- The lawsuit: It was a pleasant surprise to see Jason “Digger” Styles at Richard’s wake even though he revealed he hates funerals in the original series, but it reminded me, what happened with his lawsuit against Mr. Gilmore that broke him and Lorelia up? Did he follow through with it? I’m wondering if maybe he gave it up because it’s pretty ballsy to show if he didn’t.
- The Presidential campaign: When Rory graduates Yale in the initial series she’s hard pressed to find a job, but eventually lands one as a traveling reporter on the Barak Obama campaign. If fiction parallels reality, that campaign went all the way. Did Rory stick with it all the way to the White House? Did she meet him? The big feather in her cap in the revival is her New Yorker piece, and while it would have been eight years ago this first job ended, I have to think there’d be some residual pride there.
New and nagging:
- The Dragon Fly Inn: I remember Emily trying to talk Lorelia into expanding the Dragon Fly in the very last episode of the initial show and she said no. After her change of heart in the revival, did Lorelia snake the property in town from Katy Perry to build the expansion? If so, will Michel stay? Is Sookie finally coming back?
- The Life and Death Brigade: When Rory says goodbye to Colin, Fin and Robert, it seems a bit dramatic. Why is this a final farewell? If she kept in touch enough to know about Colin’s knee surgery, why does her skipping breakfast equal a Dorothy leaving Wizard of Oz-like departure?
- The Maid: How weird was it to see Emily Gilmore with the same maid for an entire year?! Now that she’s pulling out of her completely justified funk over Richard’s death is she going to snap to her senses and fire the maid or turn over a new leaf? Can she live a happy life with her maid and extended family in Nantucket?
- The Love Triangle: Team Logan? Team Jess? The revival clearly crosses Team Dean off the list of Rory’s love life, but the torrid Logan affair and longing Jess look makes it seem like the past is still battling it out for her hand. Last four word drama aside, is she finally going to choose between them or find someone new? Probably not poor, sad, weird plot line Paul.
- Paris and Doyle: Why? Why did they break up everyone’s favorite Gilmore Girls couple? You root for them to stay together after college in the last season of the initial series, and we’re still rooting for them in the revival. Will Paris and Doyle get divorced or reconcile?
- Rory’s Career: Is The Stars Hollow Gazette going to be her future, or will her book finally be the uber success we always expected for Rory? I still think fans are reeling a bit from how not all-together our little overachiever is in the revival.
- Babies, babies, babies: Did Lorelia and Luke finally make a decision on the kids thing? Luke shot down surrogacy, and frankly, they’re both pushing fifty so maybe that ship has sailed? And of course, the big question is who is Rory’s baby daddy? Signs point to Logan. Whatever the outcome, my money is on it being a girl. Hello, Gilmore Girls the Next Generation.
Hopefully everyone had a happy Halloween! And if you’re like me and one of your ways of celebrating is to watch scary movies, you may have noticed that certain newer films give shout outs to their earlier, influential counterparts. One such love affair is between my favorite scary movie, Scream, and one of the best horror flicks, the original Halloween. Here’s the top 10 Halloween references in the 1996 movie: This one is pretty obvious....
Hopefully everyone had a happy Halloween! And if you’re like me and one of your ways of celebrating is to watch scary movies, you may have noticed that certain newer films give shout outs to their earlier, influential counterparts. One such love affair is between my favorite scary movie, Scream, and one of the best horror flicks, the original Halloween. Here’s the top 10 Halloween references in the 1996 movie:
- This one is pretty obvious. In the opening scene in Scream where the killer is asking poor Casey questions while she and her boyfriend’s lives hang in the balance, the warm up question is “Who is the killer in Halloween?” This one she get’s right: it’s Michael Meyers.
- In this same opener, Casey pops almost identical popcorn to popcorn doomed friend Annie pops in Halloween.
- Both killer’s wear white masks available to buy at the store for Halloween.
- Casey and Laurie Strode from Halloween both pull off the killer’s mask at one point while being attacked in their respective films.
- In Halloween the main psychiatric doctor that treats Michael Meyers is named Dr. Sam Loomis. In Scream, leading lady Sidney’s boyfriend and psycho killer number one is named Billy Loomis.
- Both movies feature the song “Don’t Fear the Reaper.” Halloween uses the original Blue Oyster Cult version while Scream uses a slower, more sober cover by Gus Black.
- The Mackenzie’s must be good in a crisis! At the end of the opening scene in Scream the distraught father tells his wife to drive over to the Mackenzie’s for help. In one of the last scenes in Halloween, Laurie Strode gives the kids she is babysitting basically the same instructions. Go to the Mackenzie’s and call the police.
- In Scream, when comic relief Randy is laying out “the rules” for surviving scary movies, he warns never to say “I’ll be right back,” following which, Stew uses that very ominous line before going to get a beer. Randy replies “I’ll see you in the kitchen with a knife.” This is exactly how Bob dies in Halloween. He goes to fetch a beer in the kitchen and Michael Meyers gets him with a big knife in the gut.
- Another obvious one, but when Sidney is going through the movie rentals for their fateful party in Scream, Randy explains that Jamie Lee Curtis is the scream queen for all the horror flicks she appeared in. They then proceed to watch Halloween.
- And finally, in Scream Randy comments that they need to be careful as they stand near the supposedly dead killer’s body because they always come back to life one last scare. Hello, Michael Meyers. That dude just wouldn’t stay dead.
Did I miss anything? Let me know below!
Sometimes coming up with a Halloween costume can be as dreadful as swimsuit shopping in December. This year, when you’re stumped trying to find something that is both clever and easy for your inebriated friends to understand, take a page from a book on your bookshelf (virtual or literal). To get you started, here are a few ideas: Classic Halloween Costumes These costumes are tried and true and have their roots in classic horror literature....
Sometimes coming up with a Halloween costume can be as dreadful as swimsuit shopping in December. This year, when you’re stumped trying to find something that is both clever and easy for your inebriated friends to understand, take a page from a book on your bookshelf (virtual or literal). To get you started, here are a few ideas:
Classic Halloween Costumes
These costumes are tried and true and have their roots in classic horror literature.
First, take a stab at Frankenstein’s monster. While a lot of people have adopted the name Frankenstein for the iconic green monster, Frankenstein was actually the name of the scientist who pieced the beast together in Mary Shelley’s novel of the same name. Instead of rocking the adapted Herman Munster look, try to go more traditional. Think poorly stitched together body parts. A little Halloween makeup and some plain and sterile looking clothes and you’ve got the look.
If you’re not big into the stitches, go with the most legit vampire, Dracula. Sure, pulling off Twilight might be easier (just wear some really nice black, gray or white clothes and pile on the powder), but it seems so much more appropriate for Halloween to don the cape and fangs for Bram Stoker’s Dracula. This can also be a fun toddler Halloween costume since it’s unexpected. Animals and fruit seem so much more popular for little ones these days.
Literary Costumes that Make You Think
Maybe these books don’t immediately come to mind if you aren’t in school, but the costumes are easy to pull off and some well read people should get what you’re going for.
First, try Hester Prynn from the Nathaniel Hawthorne classic, The Scarlet Letter. Find your best old school long black dress and white apron and bonnet to pull off the Puritan look and then pin a big red letter A on your chest. Maybe you don’t want to go around pretending to be an adulteress, but the story is definitely dark and twisted.
If you want to go way back in the world of literature for your costume, try Medusa. This terrifying mythological creature from Hesiod’s Theogony (and indirectly referenced in Homer’s The Iliad and The Odyssey) could turn any person to stone who gazed at her face. Throw on a white sheet toga style and weave some plastic snakes through your hair and you’re there.
Romantic Couple Costume
People may not get this one without a quick question or two, but there’s nothing more romantic and tragic than the original iconic couple Romeo and Juliet. Shakespeare knew how to write a heartbreaking love story and this one has just enough darkness to make it Halloween appropriate. Find yourselves some fancy Victorian garb and walk hand-in-hand with your lover. For extra authenticity, Romeo can carry a small vial with poison (or maybe just vodka) and Juliet can carry a sword, the two weapons that helped the star-crossed couple commit suicide.
Contemporary Literary Costumes
If you want to play the odds people will get what you are right away, you may go with something more current.
For example, you’d have to be a recluse to not at least know about The Hunger Games books and movies, and the lead character, Catniss, of Suzanne Collins’s novels, is surprisingly easy to pull off if you’ve got longer hair. You might not even have to buy any clothes if you already have some plain black pants and a plain black long sleeved shirt. Just add some black eyeliner, braid your hair in a side braid and find a toy bow and arrow set, and you’re good to go.
Similar to the above, the Divergent series has quickly become a mega blockbuster. To pull of Veronica Roth’s Tris or Four, just get out those plain black clothes again and you’ve got the most important part of your look. Print out the dauntless symbol and make sure you’ve got it either on your skin as a fake tattoo or on your outfit if you can’t make that happen and carry a toy gun. Presto, you’ve just joined their faction. Extra points if you can add Tris’s three black birds tattoo to your collar bone.
And if you’re a single guy looking to pick up ladies, you might try for Christian Grey from E.L. James’s Fifty Shades of Grey. Wear some torn up, ratty jeans low on your hips, a white button down shirt and carry one of the many available props from the books. Try handcuffs or a riding crop, or if you’re more conservative, just carrying a grey tie would work. If you’re afraid people won’t get it, here’s a solution: add a name tag that says “Hi! My name is Christian.”
This past weekend I went to see one of my favorite bands, Thrice, play live at the Brooklyn Bowl in Las Vegas for the fourth time. It’s a show I didn’t expect to see after the band announced their breakup in 2011. Thankfully, the stars aligned and the band returned in 2016 with a new album, To Be Everywhere Is to Be Nowhere, and a tour to support it. The show was amazing, and while...
This past weekend I went to see one of my favorite bands, Thrice, play live at the Brooklyn Bowl in Las Vegas for the fourth time. It’s a show I didn’t expect to see after the band announced their breakup in 2011. Thankfully, the stars aligned and the band returned in 2016 with a new album, To Be Everywhere Is to Be Nowhere, and a tour to support it.
The show was amazing, and while I stood in the balcony above the fray of the pit and general admission chaos, it reminded me of earlier times when I would go to shows for the excitement and fury that you can only find at a show where a band rocks this hard.
With a vast and eclectic catalogue, I was anxious to see what the band would play. Past shows were filled with all the fan favorites and singles off their albums, but this set list was a bit different. They played many of the ones you would expect to hear, like “The Artist in the Ambulance” and their newest singles “Blood on the Sand” and “Black Honey,” but they also got in some unsuspected songs like “Deadbolt” and “For Miles”. They were sure to include some of their more melodic songs, like “Daedalus” off The Alchemy Index. I particularly enjoyed the two songs they played off Beggars, “All the World is Mad” and “The Weight.” Overall, it felt like the band had assembled a set list of the songs they really wanted to play and it showed in their perfect execution.
While there wasn’t a lot of commentary between songs, the show was strong from start to finish and they made sure to showcase what they do best: play great and moving music.
Whether you believe in ghosts or not, there are many a spooky story that surround the Portland, Oregon area. With the most ghoulish month of the year approaching, it seemed only fitting to try out a Portland haunted pub tour this past weekend when I visited the eclectic city. The walking tour was a mix of historical accounts, creepy stories of hearsay, and of course, local beer. It was interesting and fun, but low on...
Whether you believe in ghosts or not, there are many a spooky story that surround the Portland, Oregon area. With the most ghoulish month of the year approaching, it seemed only fitting to try out a Portland haunted pub tour this past weekend when I visited the eclectic city.
The walking tour was a mix of historical accounts, creepy stories of hearsay, and of course, local beer. It was interesting and fun, but low on the actual scary factor. Don’t expect to feel any chills down your spine unless you are one of the few lucky ones to snag a picture of an unexpected specter in a particularly haunted spot with your camera phone. Still, I would recommend it if you like to have a few drinks and hear the seedy side of things.
The next time I go I’d like to try the tour specific to the Shanghai tunnels, something we just got a taste of on the pub tour. These tunnels make up a creepy underground labyrinth lying just below the city where all types of debauchery took place in the mid-1800s to early 1900s, including drug trafficking, illegal card games, and oh yeah, kidnapping. (Ever heard of getting Shanghaied?) While this tour lacks beer, I hear it’s much higher on the creepy factor. I mean, if you’re claustrophobic it’ll be enough to send your heart racing just being in the confined tight brick and rock lined spaces.
When writing, you never know when inspiration may strike. Sometimes the spark of an idea can come while idly thinking in the shower, listening to a song, or reading your social media feed. For my first story, that inspiration came from a dream I just couldn’t shake. I remember waking up and thinking how vivid and terrifying it was. It wasn’t until months later I took that memory and turned it into the prologue for...
When writing, you never know when inspiration may strike. Sometimes the spark of an idea can come while idly thinking in the shower, listening to a song, or reading your social media feed. For my first story, that inspiration came from a dream I just couldn’t shake. I remember waking up and thinking how vivid and terrifying it was. It wasn’t until months later I took that memory and turned it into the prologue for Lost Immortal. From there, I just kept writing. It was such a surprise to feel the words just come. There were moments of writers block, and often I’d take a break until I found my voice again, and thankfully I did.
With my second book, which is currently in progress, I’m finding the process a bit different. There was no one moment or thought that hit me and started my tale. I just started writing. This time though, the inspiration comes in unexpected bursts. An idea hits me in the groggy hours of the morning when I’m between that state of awake and asleep. The answer to what to do next comes while I’m walking to my closet. At first, I tried to just work from memory, and most times, it’s fine. Other times, not so much. The ideas come out muddled and not as clear. So I’ve learned to write them down wherever they come. Some are on my phone or iPad, but others are messily scrolled on whatever paper was closest to me at the time. And that’s the thing with inspiration, it can be fast and fleeting. Don’t let it come and go without acting. I know this second book would be a lot less exciting if my thoughts were just pieced together from what I can remember from driving to the bank when that idea flew by.
So enjoy these quotes that help convey the way I feel about my creative process and always carry a pen, crayon, or something electronic to capture your idea!
“You never have to change anything you got up in the middle of the night to write.” – Saul Bellow
“Creativity is intelligence having fun.” – Albert Einstein
“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” – Arthur Ashe
“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius
“Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” – Benjamin Franklin
“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou
And don’t forget:
“Be so good they can’t ignore you.” – Steve Martin
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