Big Move for Youtube?

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Youtube allowing topless girls?

Well, apparently yes– for now. In the recent music video for the song “Thinking About You” by Calvin Harris and Ayah Marar, there is an actress whom is seen topless– fully exposed breasts and butt for almost a full minute– and there are other scenes of more taboo relationships (women with other women, stripping down to only underwear for another woman, an orgy, and teenagers literally fighting over a girl). And then there is the Justin Timberlake video “Tunnel Vision,” which features completely naked women. While both of these videos are not demeaning women nor objectifying them by exposing them– I find this to be more tasteful than some of the skimpy outfits they make women wear in other videos– this is a huge step forward for youtube and music videos.

While images and videos like this have been commonly accepted in Europe for years, in the US we are rather use to covering women up (maybe not in the classiest manner, but their nipples and crotch are relatively covered, right?). Rather than taking the videos down when they premiered, Youtube moved them to Vevo, their video partner, and now simply have a warning for parents before the video starts. Now, does this mean that more music videos will feature female nudity (or, oh my, male nudity?!?!), I can’t say. But does this make me happy to see? Yes, that we aren’t being such a prudish country that obviously enjoys sexual images (watch any television show, let’s be honest here), but likes to keep the reality of it hidden away. Let me be frank– we all need to grow up a little and be more honest about what really goes on between the sheets.

What do you think of this move for Youtube? Do you agree with it, or do you think these videos should be censored?

  • (“Thinking About You (Explicit)” by Calvin Harris ft. Ayah Marar)
  • (“Tunnel Vision (Explicit)” by Justin Timberlake)

Song of the Month: April

To kick off April and the time when Spring actually seems to come around, I wanted a more upbeat and fun song than some of my previous ones. So, I chose Icona Pop’s, who is a Swedish pop DJ group, big single “I Love It (I Don’t Care)” and features (and was partially written by) Charli XCX. Although this song actually was released as a single in May of 2012. Despite this, the song did not take off in the US until recently when it was featured on the hit CW show, The Vampire Diaries, performed on Dancing with the Stars, and used in a Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) commercial.

I personally love this song for its simple lyrics, strong voices, and well played tempo/beat. It is easy to dance to and fun to just listen to as well.

WARNING: unlike the songs I typically upload on this site, this one does contain language some might find offensive. Personally, it does not bother me, but I want to give all fair warning. This song and visuals belong to Icona Pop and Charli XCX and TEN Music Group.

What do you think of the song? And what do you think of Icona Pop?

Fashion Star: Season 2

With long lasting fashion-reality shows like Project Runway and What Not to Wear struggling to keep viewers (WNTW will air its last season this summer), NBC seems to have hit a mark with its business-meets-fashion show Fashion Star, which returned for its second season on March 8. The show is where designers compete for their designs to be bought by one of three companies– Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Express– and then immediately sold within select stores and online within minutes of it airing on the show. Designers on the show are working in one of three teams, each one mentored by a different judge– either billion-dollar celebrity designer Jessica Simpson, menswear designer John Varvatos, or best-dressed winner and designer Nicole Richie–but their designs are bought individually.

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The show is currently only in its second season and has already made an huge impact with viewers. Perhaps what makes this show so marketable and popular with viewers is that 1) it is on a major, basic cable network and is thus more accessible to all audiences and 2) that the viewer can purchase the clothes. This show is breaking down that invisible boundary that has existed between the designer and the consumer– the viewer can immediately purchase what has walked down the runway– and it creates a connection. But another great aspect to this show is that, unlike Project Runway, the show displays that while a designer may design, it comes down to the buyer whether that item actually is seen and bought by customers. Essentially, Fashion Star combines the creativity of the design world and the reality of the business market.

I like the season thus far and many of the designers’ works. There are some truly creative and innovative designers (some with incredible resumes, I may add) who are on this season and I look forward to seeing what they come up with next. Below I have included the photos of some of the winning designs.

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What do you think of Fashion Star? And do you have a favorite fashion-related show?

My Top 10 Most Anticipated TV Shows of 2013

With 2012 wrapping up (hooray, no apocalypse!) there is now the anticipation of movies and television shows for 2013 to begin. This is my list of my top 5 returning and top 5 new television shows that I am looking forward to and think you should be too.

Returning TV Shows

  • Being Human (BBC America): this show has accomplished what few others have– killing off their entire original cast and replacing them with a new one. This isn’t like what American Horror Story does where they reuse the same actors in new roles the next season– no, Being Human has new actors and characters with the original set-up. The season will focus on the new relationship between werewolf Tom (Michael Socha), ghost Alex (Kate Brachen), and vampire Hal (Damien Moloney). There will be a new villain to face and each character’s quirks– such as Hal’s severe OCD and battle with controlling his bloodlust– to create drama. At the heart of this sci-fi show is the relationship between the three main characters and the humor that keeps it all fun and not too heavy (unlike season 3). Being Human will be returning February 3, 2013, for its fifth season.

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  • Community (NBC): this show is one of the funniest I have seen on basic television and I love the writing and delivery of the material– it is funny without being cruel or silly. As well, I love the characters  and actors (especially Joel McHale) for making the show what it truly is. The show focuses on the adventures of a group of friends that all attend a community college. The fourth season of Community returns February 7, 2013.

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  • Doctor Who (BBC America): this will be the eighth season of the show and will continue with the 11th incarnation of the Doctor (played by Matt Smith) and his new companion, Clara (played by Jenna Louise-Coleman). The basic premise of Doctor Who is a humanoid time-traveling alien journeys all over the universe and time to save the world. This season focuses on the relationship between the Doctor and Clara. Not much is known about Clara besides the fact that she has died twice– once when she became a dalek and the other time in 1892 during last night’s Christmas episode– and that there is a huge mystery surrounding her. The eighth season of Doctor Who will premiere on March 1, 2013.

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  • Pretty Little Liars (ABC Family): this show has created a cult-like following over the past four years and is returning for its fourth season, and returns to even more speculation and excitement afte revealing another member of the “A” group. The show focuses on Spencer (Trioan Bellisario), Aria (Lucy Hale), Hanna (Ashley Benson), and Emily (Shay Mitchell) and their quest to solve the murder of their friend Alison (Sasha Pieterse). All four girls and those they are close to have been targets– or have even been killed– by this group, known only as “A,” that is covering up Alison’s death. This season will focus on Toby’s (Keegan Allen), Spencer’s boyfriend, betrayal and role as a member of “A.” Pretty Little Liars will premiere its fourth season on January 8, 2013.

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  • The Walking Dead (AMC): I am fairly new to this phenomenon (my best friend is obsessed with the show and I started watching it with him towards the end of the season and fell for it) but I am extremely excited for the return. The show, while the main villains are zombies, focuses on the issues with people and their morality. The show flourishes for its character dynamics and originality and I look forward to its return. The Walking Dead returns February 10, 2013  and re-airs all previous episodes December 31, 2012 through January 1, 2013. 

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New Television Shows

  • The Americans (FX): this show is coming along after the huge successes of FX’s other original shows– Sons of Anarchy, American Horror Story, and Wilfred– and follows on the plot of a Cold War drama in which there are Soviet spies hiding as Americans with spouses and families, meanwhile these spies will do anything once they are told to. This show, just from the trailer, looks to have a lot of drama and suspense along with a question of morality. The Americans stars Annet Mahendru and Paul Jude Letersky and premieres January 30, 2013.

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  • The Carrie Diaries (CW): this show is the highly anticipated prequel to Sex and the City and explores the life of Carrie Bradshaw (Anna Sophia Robb) before she became…Carrie Bradshaw. The show will explore her home life, friends before Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte, and how she broke into the industry. I am looking forward to this show and my best friend and I will be watching the premiere. The Carrie Diaries premieres January 14, 2013.

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  • Do No Harm (NBC): this show is about the neurosurgeon Dr. Jason Cole (Steven Pasquale), who has multiple personalities– well, just one other personality called Ian Price that comes out at a specific time and is a psychopath. The show is based on the novel Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and will focus on Cole’s attempts to keep Price away; and Price’s attempts to take over the body completely so he may seek revenge due to being suppressed by Cole’s drugs.  Do No Harm premiers January 31, 2013.

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  • Orphan Black (BBC America): this show is another one of BBC America’s “Supernatural Saturdays” shows– others include Being Human and Merlin— and their third original series. The show is about street-smart orphan Sarah (Tatiana Maslany), who witnesses a woman, whom looks exactly like her, commit suicide and assumes her identity to take her savings. All of this leads Sarah to discovering that the woman who died was one of her many clones and slowly, they are all being killed off. Orphan Black premieres March 30, 2013.

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  • Ripper Street (BBC America): this is also another BBC America original series and follows along the same tone and idea as their other original drama Copper. This show focuses on three detectives (Matthew Macfadyen, Jerome Flynn, and Adam Rothenberg) who are trying to stop the various murders that are similar to those of “Jack the Ripper”– yet, the man that was the original killer is dead. Hopefully this show will not be as drawn out as Copper was and will be better paced. Ripper Street premieres January 19, 2013.

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What shows are you looking forward to in 2013? And are any of these on your list? 

Zac Posen Replaces Michael Kors on Project Runway

After being a judge on the hit fashion show Project Runway for ten years, Michael Kors has decided to retire from judging. Kors, who is one of the most beloved designers in America (he is my favorite American designer and I buy his products frequently), could not do the next season due to scheduling conflicts. He is not completely leaving the show– he will be there as a guest judge and will be at the finale– but he will not be a permanent judge like he has been for the past decade. Taking his place will be American designer, who also interned for Kors, Zac Posen.

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I will really miss Michael Kors– he is my favorite American designer and he is my favorite judge– and I worry that the show will not the same without him. While I am sure that Posen will do a fantastic job– he has been a guest judge frequently before–I will still miss Kors as a regular judge. Furthermore, Project Runway will change for the contestants, who will all be forced to compete in groups.

Project Runway will return January 24, 2013.

What do you think of Kors leaving the show and Posen taking his place?

Where Were The National Costumes at The Miss Universe 2012 Competition?

Every year since I was about seven I have watched the Miss Universe Competition and my favorite part has always been the beginning, which is when each girl is introduced in her national costume. The last year they actually showed all of the costumes on television was in 2010, but in the 2011 competition they started using short, colorful dresses, all of which were from the same designer, instead.

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And, rather than showing the “National Costumes Parade,” the network showed a montage of all the costumes in thirty brief seconds. But, what is the point of not showing these costumes? They are absolutely stunning (or ridiculous) and are visually interesting to watch. As well, the designers of these costumes are being given a huge honor to show the world their design and they thus work hard to perfect these looks. Instead, they now show one dress in four different colors. So, I have been disappointed for two years to not see the costumes in all of their glory.

Why would they no longer show these costumes? Is it because they want more sex appeal for the male audience and trying to recreate the costumes from the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show (which I discussed in a previous post)? Because if that is the point, then they are being ridiculous since some costumes (such as the one below of Miss Romania) are just as provocative as the lingerie in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.

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Instead of the parade being on television, they now do it before the competition airs and award the best costume, which was China this year (see the two photos below) and Mexico (third photo) came in second.

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Overall, these costumes are stunning and have been worked on for a long time by dedicated designers. And instead, Mr. Trump decides he wants all of them in generic, short dresses in one of four colors. Really, Mr. Trump? Really?

Look at the various costumes from this year and you decide. Do you think they should include the National Costume Parade in the Miss Universe Competition again, or do prefer the dresses they now have?

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