April 2018: One Damn Crazy Month!

Hey, y’all!  Another month in 2018 has come and gone (man, this year is flying by!).  This past April was so crazy, I didn’t really have a chance to report on everything that went on, considering that a lot of things were happening back to back.  With that being said, I decided to create an “April in review” post to revisit some of the previous month’s biggest events.  Let’s get this party started!

Black Panther Surpasses Titanic as the Third Biggest Box Office Smash

Black Panther (Alt)

Black Panther was one of the most anticipated movies of 2018 (not to mention one of the best), and the box office numbers reflected that.  When the film was released this  February, it made $370.5 M globally.  By April, the movie grossed $1.3 billion, surpassing Titanic as the third highest grossing film in North America, behind Star Wars:  The Force Awakens and Avatar.  The movie’s success was well deserved.  For those of y’all that haven’t seen Black Panther yet, you’re definitely missing out (plus, it’s best to watch Black Panther before you see Avengers:  Infinity War, considering there’s a connection between the two films, of course).  The movie will be released Blu-Ray/DVD on May 8th.  Go out and buy that bad boy!

Cardi B Drops Invasion of Privacy and Reveals Her Pregnancy All While Breaking Beyoncé’s Record!

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Speaking of topping records, I have to mention Cardi B’s accomplishments in April.  From the time this year started, most people wanted two things confirmed:  the date Cardi would release her full-length album and whether or not she was pregnant.  All Cardi’s fans got their wish.  On April 5, 2018, Cardi released her debut album, Invasion of Privacy, which received mostly critical acclaim from critics and audiences.  I enjoyed the album immensely myself (yeah, I’m warming up to new school Hip Hop).  Two days after the album release, Cardi finally settled the rumors about her being pregnant by showing her big belly during her live performance of “Be Careful” on SNL.  If all that wasn’t enough, Cardi soon shattered Beyoncé’s record of having the most songs featured on the Billboard Top 100 chart simultaneously.  Good ‘head, Cardi, and congrats on the new baby!

J. Cole Releases His KOD Album

J. Cole

On April 20, 2018, J. Cole released his long-awaited album, KOD (short for “Kids on Drugs,” “King Overdosed” and/or “Kill Our Demons”).  KOD debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 100 chart after earning 397,000 units, making this album his fifth consecutive No. 1 debut.  So far, I’ve listened to the tracks “ATM,” “Kevin’s Heart,” and “1985 (Intro to “The Fall Off”)”, and I’m lovin’ them.  I heard a small portion of J. Cole’s work before, but this is the first time I really listened to his music, and I’m impressed.  J. Cole, thanks for making some bangers to add to my Apple Music collection!

Kendrick Lamar Won a Pulitzer Prize for DAMN.!

Kendrick Lamar

Out of everyone listed in this post, Kendrick Lamar had to be the person that had the best month (and/or possibly the best year) ever.  On April 16, 2018, Kendrick won the Pulitzer Prize for Music for his album DAMNBeforehand, only jazz and classical albums won the coveted award.  I have to say, I couldn’t be prouder of Kendrick.  Earning a Pulitzer was a great win for him and Hip Hop.  Of course, certain folks had to bring up Grammy night—again—and how he was robbed of the Album of the Year award, and that the Grammys ain’t shit, etc.  Look, the Pulitzer is a lot more prestigious than the Album of the Year Grammy anyway.  The jury takes their job with the awarding the Pulitzer so seriously, that there’s even been a few years that they didn’t grant the award to anyone.  So, kudos to Kendrick and the folks still butthurt over Grammy night can shut the hell up forever.

Bill Cosby Was Found Guilty of Sexual Assault

Jury Finds Bill Cosby Guilty In Retrial

This has to be the saddest piece of news that occurred last month.  On April 24, 2018, Bill Cosby was found guilty on all three counts of sexual misconduct and may face up to 10 years in prison.  I honestly didn’t believe Bill would even be indicted, given the history of powerful men usually escaping any type of jail time in criminal cases.  Camille Cosby, Bill’s wife, recently came forward and accused the district attorney’s office of committing “mob justice,” and likened Bill’s trial to that of Emmett Till.  I wouldn’t go quite that far, Mrs. Cosby.

I still find it hard to believe that Bill Cosby even committed these crimes.  I’m not saying he’s innocent; too many women have come forward, all different races and ages, all echoing pretty much the same stories, much like Harvey Weinstein’s case.  I find it hard to believe because this was the same Bill Cosby I grew up on.  The same Bill Cosby that created Fat Albert and A Different World.  The same Bill Cosby I used to watch every Thursday night on The Cosby Show and each afternoon on Nickelodeon doing his Picture Pages segment.  The same Bill Cosby I saw on Jell-O commercials.  The same Bill Cosby that donated millions to HBCU’s.  It’s the same Bill Cosby that spoke at my late grandmother’s 50th anniversary of her college graduation.  It’s a shame that a man that built up a 50+ year legacy destroyed it all in the most shameful manner possible.

—Written by Nadiya

EDIT:  Black Panther will be released digitally on May 8th, and on Blu-Ray/DVD on May 15th.  Either way, go purchase a copy!

What do you think the biggest moment of April 2018 was?  What do you think about the moments I listed?  Were they eventful, or ho-hum?  Let me know in the comments section!

‘Infinity War’ Spoilers! (Out of Context)

Hey, y’all!  I know I just posted my Avengers:  Infinity War review just yesterday, but I realize some of you out there may be curious about all the big events that happened in the film.  For all of you that want the fine details of the movie, I decided to make this post feature the major spoilers in the film.  I decided to tell you guys the important plot points using one of my favorite methods:  GIFs.  Enjoy!

 

 

***WARNING:  The following GIFs contain important spoilers for Avengers:  Infinity War.  If you haven’t seen the film yet, you may not want to see the pictures.  YOU’VE BEEN WARNED.***

 

 

Naruto - Choking (Alt)

Flying Doughnut (Alt)

Squidsworth - I Hate Everyone (Alt)

Needles in Face (Alt)

Thumper (Alt)

Hans Falling (Alt)

Tyrion - A Small Man Can Cast a Large Shadow (Alt)

Forging Metal (Alt)

World War Z (Alt)

Ashes to Ashes 2 (Alt)

Cecily Strong - Huh (Alt)

Hope you learned somethin’!  (You can thank Twitter for the idea.  😂😂)

—Written (and GIFs posted) by Nadiya

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Was an Experience…

Wow.  Just wow.

I took the chance to see Avengers:  Infinity War last night (Apr. 28, 2018), not really knowing what to expect.  I heard the ending was crazy (which it was), when I viewed Avengers:  Age of Ultron nearly two years ago I remember walking out of the theatre a bit disappointed, and over the years, I’ve learned that having so many great characters and/or actors in one film can be hit or miss.  Last night I left the movie theatre with my mind blown…in a good way.

Just a quick synopsis:  Thanos—the purple bad guy that the MCU’s been teasing us with for the past six years—finally does something and decides to rule the universe with the help of the Infinity Gauntlet and all six of the Infinity Stones.  It’s up to The Avengers to stop him, but to the chagrin of humanity, they’re scattered across the universe and not exactly on speaking terms (Tony and Steve).  Thankfully, they gain a little help from their friends:  The Guardians of the Galaxy, Black Panther, Spider-Man, and Doctor Strange (yes, those Beatles puns were intentional).  The stakes have never been higher.

Thanos (Alt)

I know what you’re thinking:  “We already know that much about the movie from the trailers and TV commercials!”  Well, that’s all I’m able to tell you without spoiling the film.  I’ll just speak on the other factors of Infinity War I enjoyed without getting deep into the plot.  First of all, this is one of the darkest movies in the MCU, and I liked that they decided to take The Avengers series to the next level the way they did.  Once again, I can’t speak too much on the subject without revealing major plot points, but trust me…the darker tone is well worth the price of admission.

All the actors did a great job, and the film was very well written as well as brilliantly handled.  I never got the feeling of there being too many cooks (The Expendables), or that the characters were all fighting for screen time (Age of Ultron).  Without broadcasting too much of the storyline, the characters were basically grouped off in different areas for the duration of the movie.  Steve, Bucky, T’Challa and the rest of Team Cap from Captain America:  Civil War (including Bruce, Vision, and Rhodey this go around) were mostly in Wakanda.  Thor, Rocket, and Groot took a trip to Nidavellir.  The remaining Guardians travel to Knowhere and later meet up with Doctor Strange, Tony and Spider-Man in Titan.  It never felt as if one character had too much focus or not enough.  Each player had equal time in the spotlight.  One thing I really like about the Russo Brothers is that they know how to handle an ensemble cast, as they more than proved when they took the helm of Civil War back in 2016.

Infinity War (Alt)

I have to echo many movie reviewers’ take on Thanos; I like the fact that he’s a fleshed out villain—much like Loki and Erik Killmonger—and he’s more than just an evildoer wrecking havoc for the sake of evil.  It’s revealed that he actually has a heart and feels genuine love…or at least his version of it.  Thanos is also a formidable opponent—as we all figured—but he turns out to commit deeds that are even worse than what we imagined, for a purpose we never would have thought possible.  The Avengers definitely have their work cut out for them.

Thor - Who the Hell are You Guys (Alt)

What I really loved about Infinity War was how the movie portrayed my baby Thor. When it comes to the Avengers movies, sometimes it feels that my sweetie is a bit underutilized, at least in my opinion.  Even though the first Avengers film still stands firm as my favorite out of the MCU, Thor didn’t really have a chance to shine, which in some respects is understandable, since he had to share the screen with his other teammates.  However, in Infinity War, Thor doesn’t hold back a damn thing, and he comes for Thanos with a vengeance, showing that he truly is mighty.  Thor is so badass in this film, that there’s a key scene where he appears in all his glory, and I kid you not, everyone in the theatre applauded.  I love that man.

Now onto the things I didn’t care for, which are small and minuscule.  Wanda’s (Scarlett Witch) accent kept changing from American to slightly Northern European.  She had a  thick Russian-esque accent in Age of Ultron and Civil War.  Pick one, boo.  Another small thing is that sometimes the transition from scene to scene would be a bit jarring, especially if it would say, switch from Earth to a completely atypical planet, but once again, that wasn’t really a biggie.  As I said before, the scenes clashed just a tiny bit, but the difference wasn’t completely overwhelming.  Oh yeah, and I didn’t like Black Widow with blonde hair.  Just sayin’.  Still ain’t feelin’ Thor’s haircut, but I’m over it.  Other than that, the movie was excellent.

In conclusion, if you haven’t seen Avengers:  Infinity War, get off your badonkadonk and go see it.  It’s worth the price of admission.  Don’t be cheap.  😛😛

Star Lord and Iron Man - It Sucks (Alt).gif

—Written by Nadiya

Have you seen Avengers:  Infinity War?  What did you think about it?  Was it the best film in the MCU, the worst, or did you like it, but not much as some of the other movies in the Marvel Universe?  Who was your favorite character?  Who was your least favorite character?  Did you think Thanos made a great villain or was he just…meh?  Let me know in the comments section!

 

Interesting Movies in January? Wow!

January Calendar

Hey, y’all!  2018 is here, and although the month of January has sucked for me so far (strep throat, money issues, my mom having the flu for nearly a month and my dog running off; y’all didn’t come to hear me whine, so I’ll hush), it appears to be really exciting in the world of entertainment, especially in the film industry.  Now, usually January is the month for films that are absolutely horrid, but this year, I haven’t heard any extremely bad reviews for any of the films that were released—some of them have been considered fair or just okay at worst, but not extremely bad—and I’m pretty interested in quite of few of them myself.   Here’s a small list of some of the movies that have come out this month—or were released last month and still in the theatres—that I’d love to see.

Proud Mary

Proud Mary

No, this is not based on the classic Ike and Tina Turner song (and yes, I know that Creedence Clearwater Revival made the song first…I love that version too, BTW).  Proud Mary showcases Ms. Taraji P. Henson as the bad ass eponymous hitwoman that makes Cookie Lyon look like Mother Teresa.  However, Mary isn’t completely heartless.  She crosses paths with a young boy that’s impacted by one of her hits and takes him under her wing, much to the chagrin of her boss.  The second I saw the trailer for this film last year, I knew I had to see it.  It was full of action and it looked like tons of fun.  I loved seeing Taraji kickin’ ass and takin’ names!

12 Strong

12 Strong (Alt)

12 Strong is a vehicle that tells the story of CIA operatives and paramilitary men sent to Afghanistan immediately after the Sept. 11 attacks.  When these men arrive in the country, they’re sent out to fight the Taliban on horseback, aided by an Afghan warlord.  I have to admit, I’m not the biggest fan of military films, but I’ve seen some great ones in my lifetime, and this film may very well be another one.  Plus, this film has Chris Hemsworth in it.  That’s more than enough to motivate me to spend some money.  Not only that, but YouTube reviewer Chris Stuckmann gave the movie a pretty decent review (I told y’all, most of the movies released so far have gotten decent reviews), which convinces me a bit more that the film is worth checking out.

Den of Thieves

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Den of Thieves is about a group of—you guessed it, thieves—coming together to rob a bank and the elite group of policemen from the LA Sheriff’s Department that’s coming to take them down.  I’ve always loved movies about crafty thieves, which is ironic considering that I can’t stand people that steal in real life.  There’s something else about this movie that piquing my interest as well.  While I was listening to The DL Hughley Show, Aleebo the Bootleg Warrior did a review of Den of Thieves, stating that the movie leaves you unsure who to root for, the cops or the crooks, seeing as the cops are just as unscrupulous as the robbers are.  Yes, I realize that the Aleebo segement is mainly a spoof, but I must admit, if the movie really does go that route, it’s well worth two hours of my time.  Last but not least, that fine ass O’Shea Jackson, Jr. is in it!  Not only is he easy on the eye, but his last two films (Straight Outta Compton and Ingrid Goes West) have proven him to be a very good actor.  Can’t wait to see this one.

Star Wars:  The Last Jedi

The Last Jedi (Alt)

As I said before, there’s some movies that were released in December that are still in the theatres that I still want to see, and Star Wars:  The Last Jedi is one of those films, despite the mixed reviews.  For those of y’all that’ve been living under a rock, The Last Jedi continues Rey and Finn’s story from the previous film, The Force Awakens.  This go around, Rey trains to be a Jedi from the one and only Luke Skywalker and faces off against whiny ass Kylo Ren once more.  I don’t really have to explain why this movie is on the list, do I?  It’s from the Star Wars series, I’m a nerd, and this was one of Carrie Fisher’s last roles, not to mention her last appearance as General (Princess) Leia.  Need I say more?

—Written by Nadiya

Although I really want to, I can’t see any of these films at the moment, because I’m broke as hell!  So, with that being said, what films do y’all wanna see this month?  Do any of the movies I listed seem interesting to you?  Are there any other films you’d like to see?  Let me know in the comments section!

The WTF? Moments of 2017 – Part 3

Ice Cube - WTF 3

This WTF Ice Cube pic was meant to be ironic.

Okay, y’all.  Here’s the last installment of the WTF moments of 2017 (and most of the good moments are in this post)!  Enjoy!

Jay-Z Releases 4:44…and Promptly Gets Stung By the Beyhive

444 (Alt)

On June 30, 2017, Jay-Z released his critically acclaimed 4:44 album.  I’ve heard most of the tracks on the album, and I can say with all honesty that it’s pure fire.  As I stated earlier, the album was praised by critics and fans alike and has received numerous accolades, including at least three Grammy nominations.  However, there were some people that didn’t appreciate the album so much…the Beyhive.

As some of y’all may remember, I reviewed Beyoncé’s Lemonade album last year.  When it came down to the subject of infidelity on the record, I stated that there was a 50/50 chance that was Bey was speaking on happened in real life, or it could be just a topic she wanted to explore.  Well, when Jigga released 4:44, he confirmed on the title track, and the songs “Kill Jay-Z” and “Family Feud” that everything Beyoncé spoke about in Lemonade was true.  He really did cheat on her.  Some have even considered 4:44 to be a companion piece to Lemonade.  That really pissed the Beyhive off.  The minute they learned that Jigga was unfaithful to Beyoncé for the majority of their relationship (apparently he didn’t stop cheating on her until Blue Ivy was born), they went inFor nearly the entire afternoon on June 30th, the Beyhive dragged Jigga by the lips.  It was damn brutal.

They even started analyzing Beyoncé’s old tracks and stating that they were symbolic of all the pain she was going through (“Ring the Alarm” was one of the ones they mentioned if I remember correctly).  One Beyhive member even mentioned the song “All I Could Do Was Cry” as being representative of Beyoncé’s anguish.  I wanted to tell her that “All I Could Do Was Cry” was actually an Etta James cover Bey did for the film Cadillac Records, but my better judgment kicked in, and I left the subject alone (another fellow Beyhive member corrected her later).  The dust settled by the next day, and today, everyone’s psyched about the release of Jigga’s “Family Feud” video, namely because Bey and Blue Ivy are featured in it.

Lisa Bloom Is Everywhere!

Lisa Bloom (Alt)

If there was one person that had a good doggone year this year, it was Lisa Bloom.  Before 2017, I didn’t know much about Lisa.  I had only really heard about her famous mother, Gloria Allred (who’s also an attorney).  That all changed this year, Lord knows.  She represented damn near everyone:  Kathy Griffin, Quantasia Sharpton (one of Usher’s accusers; see Part 2 to learn more about her), Melissa Meeks (Jeremy Meeks’s aka “Felon Bae’s” ex-wife), Montia Sabbag (the woman caught with Kevin Hart), Blac Chyna and even Harvey Weinstein, who she later dropped as a client.  Good Lord!  Can’t say this lady isn’t makin’ her money!

The New Edition Story

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Here’s another good WTF moment for 2017.  My very first post for the year (and for the longest time, the only post I had) was about how much I loved The New Edition Story.  I figured the movie would be good when I first heard about it, but when I actually watched it, I was blown away.  Viewing this miniseries the first of the year and noting how it gave BET its prestige back, let me know that 2017 was certainly starting off on the right foot (at least in respect to entertainment), aside from all the Chris Brown/Soulja Boy drama (that’s explained in Part 1).  Y’all can read my review for my in-depth analysis, but I’ll say that if you haven’t seen this film, or you’re one of the young millennials that don’t really know much about New Edition, you definitely wanna check this gem out.

Note:  I found out after writing my review for The New Edition Story that the altercation the boys had with Kurtis Blow was fabricated for entertainment purposes.  Sorry, Kurt!

Get Out Is One of the Biggest Blockbusters of the Year

Get Out (Alt)

The night I went to see Get Out, I decided to make a mother-daughter day of it, and let’s just say that everything went wrong…horribly wrong.  By the time we got to the theatre, I was physically and emotionally drained.  Then the film started, and my mood lifted.  Get Out was one of the most thought-provoking horror-comedy/thrillers I’ve ever seen, and I knew that all the hype the movie was getting was well deserved.

I was interested in seeing this film from the get go.  I remember my former editor tasking us to write a review about the teaser trailer circa Dec. 2016, but apparently, he was told to inform us “not to mention race in the review.”  After viewing the trailer, that request seemed asinine then, and it seems even more asinine now.  The entire movie revolves around race, with wealthy, yet aging white people having their consciousness placed in young black people because they buy into stereotypes of us being faster, stronger and more virile.  The theme struck a chord with a lot of people, black and white alike, and became a blockbuster film, as well as the most talked about movie of 2017, arguably.

What was even more shocking is that the film was directed and written by Jordan Peele, who we never even figured would make a movie this deep, given his strictly comedic background.  The easter eggs and symbolism in Get Out has been discussed so much, that Jordan even made a video breaking down the fan theories.  Not only that, but the film has made its way into the pop culture lexicon.  “The sunken place” is now the go-to phrase whenever describing the space some black folks seem to be in whenever they disrespect the culture.  I was so glad to see this movie get the love it deserves.  If you haven’t seen Get Out yet, you must’ve been sittin’ under a rock.  Get out and see it.  **Bad pun**

The World Welcomes Sir and Rumi Carter, Queen Beyoncé’s Twins

Beyonce's Baby Bump (Alt)

 

Before Jigga got drug by his lips for admittedly disrespecting his wife for years on end, the Beyhive rejoiced circa Feb. 2017 when Beyonce first announced that she was pregnant again, this time with twins.  Needless to say, when the now legendary Instagram post with Bey’s baby bump was first uploaded, the whole internet went ape.  For the next few months, all anyone could talk about was Beyoncé’s twins.  Would they be two girls, two boys or a girl and a boy?  If they were two girls, did that mean that they would team up with Blue and become a new generation of Destiny’s Child?  What would be the twins’ names?  On and on it went.  Then, sometime in June, Beyoncé had her babies.

Sir and Rumi with Beyonce (Alt)

The internet started going even more ape, begging to see photos of the twins and to learn their names.  Some of them even fawned over the fact that Bey had the twins in June, making them Geminis.  A few weeks later, Queen Bey posted her second legendary photo of herself and the babies and made their names public:  Sir and Rumi.  Personally, I would’ve gone another route, but these are Beyoncé’s kids; she can name them whatever she wants to.  Of course, whenever the media gets a glimpse of the babies, to this very day, everyone loses their shit.  That’s fine, though.  Bey seems happy and it looks like she and Jigga have worked things out, making their family stronger than ever.  Congrats to Beyoncé.

 

Harvey Weinstein and the #MeToo Movement

Harvey Weinstein and Me Too

For decades, Harvey Weinstein was considered one of the top film producers in the movie industry.  Weinstein was once the co-owner of the now-defunct Miramax Films and the current owner of The Weinstein Company, and he worked with industry legends such as Quentin Tarantino, Peter Jackson, and Robert Rodriguez.  However, Weinstein’s good name and prestige became irreparably damaged circa fall 2017.  Around that time, A-list actresses such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Asia Argento, Rose McGowan, and Ashley Judd alleged that they had all suffered some type of sexual harassment and/or assault from Weinstein.  Despite being a well-respected producer, rumors about Weinstein’s proclivities towards sexual misconduct had been going around Hollywood for years, but they were written off as just baseless lies or bad jokes.  When the victimized women came forward, people began to see the truth in the what they were saying, and Weinstein’s misdeeds became public knowledge in a major way.

Over time, nearly 82 women stated that Weinstein had either raped or sexually harassed them.  There was even an audio tape released of Weinstein aggressively coaxing Italian model Ambra Gutierrez to come to his hotel room.  After the women told their stories, the floodgates opened.  More victims, men and women, shed light on their own sexual assaults, but their own stories weren’t against Harvey Weinstein…they were against other big players in Hollywood.  Names of alleged rapists/sexual harassers have included Dustin Hoffman, Richard Dreyfuss, Charlie Sheen, Kevin Spacey, Louis C.K., Brett Ratner, Jeremy Piven, and Ben Affleck, just to name a few.  Other men outside of Hollywood were also accused of sexual assault such as Tavis Smiley, Warren Sapp, Charlie Rose, Russell Simmons and Matt Lauer.  The victims vary in gender and race, and they have ranged from Angelina Jolie to Terry Crews.  Corey Feldman, who’s been calling out Hollywood’s pedophilia for years and has admitted to being a victim himself, has recently decided to make a film exposing other industry people that have molested and raped young children.  Ironically enough, the interview Corey had about his upcoming film (which was the very one I linked) was with none other than Matt Lauer.

These admissions of being victimized have given power to the #MeToo movement, a crusade first started by Tarana Burke in 2006After Alyssa Milano encouraged other victims to say the phrase on Twitter, the campaign grew in size and reputation.  The silence breakers in the #MeToo movement were voted Time magazine’s 2017 Person of the Year.  More victims have made their stories public, no longer afraid of the ramifications of speaking up about the abuse they’ve endured.

Donald Trump Is Sworn In As the 45th President of the United States

Donald Trump (Alt)

Need I say more?

—Written by Nadiya

Okay, y’all.  That was the last part of my WTF series!  What did you consider the biggest WTF moment of 2017; good or bad?  Did you agree with any of the things I mentioned?  Would you add anything else?  Let me know in the comments section!

 

The WTF? Moments of 2017 – Part 2

Ice Cube - WTF 2 (Alt)

Alright, y’all.  Here’s part 2 of the top WTF moments of 2017, as promised!  Once again, get comfortable, because it’s pretty long!

Usher Lets It Burn…Literally

"Fences" New York Screening - Arrivals

If 2016 was the year of celebrity death, 2017 was definitely the year of sex scandals (more on them later).  Around the same time reports of R. Kelly’s sex cult were making headlines, court papers were leaked stating that Usher infected a young woman named Maya Fox-Davis with genital herpes.  To add insult to injury, the woman stated that she slept with Usher while he was married to Tameka Foster, and she even served as a bridesmaid in Usher and Tameka’s wedding.  Just ratchet.

More women—and one man—spoke up, also stating that they contracted the disease after having unprotected sex with Usher, who was not honest with them about his STD status.  The weirdest story, however, was when the last woman, Quantasia Sharpton, present her case…along with attorney Lisa Bloom.  Most folks couldn’t believe that Usher slept with Quantasia because she was nearly 400 lbs., but that’s not what really shocked me.  What surprised me was that although Quantasia was suing Usher, she wasn’t even one of the women he infected.  Yes, you read that correctly.  The girl tested negative for herpes, and still wanted to sue Usher for pain and suffering.  To make the case even stranger, it was later revealed that the girl never slept with Usher in the first place and that she’s actually a pathological liarDespite that, she’s still getting rewarded with an all-expense paid gastric bypass surgery.  Now, that’s what I call justice.  *Sarcasm*

Joe Budden’s Bad Attitude

Joe Budden (Alt)

For those of y’all that aren’t too sure who Joe Budden is, he’s the dude that made the song “Pump It Up” back in 2003.  It was featured in films such as 2 Fast 2 Furious and You Got Served (God, that movie was terrible), and you can hear it nowadays at sports functions along with Gary Glitter’s “Rock and Roll” (aka “The Hey Song”).  Today, Joe hosts—or used to host—the Hip-Hop oriented show Everday Struggle with DJ Akademics and Nadeska Alexis, and uh…he ain’t the most gracious host.  First, he had Lil’ Yachty on his show sometime around the spring, and good Lord, he was a grouch.  Yachty, who was 19 at the time of the interview, pretty much admitted that he was happy every day, and that he wasn’t 100% sure about what type of record deal he had.  Instead of calmly advising the young man that he should be more mindful of what type of contract he’s been signed to, and being glad that Yachty is enjoying life, Joe went in on him.  Black Twitter gave Joe hell for that.  I have to give Yachty props for being respectful for the entire episode.

Next, was the 2017 BET Awards.  The Everyday Struggle crew went down there to interview some of the nominees, and one of the groups they had to speak with was Migos.  When it was time for the interview to wrap up, Joe got frustrated and walked off from the group a few minutes early while Akademics was giving the group props before they went their separate ways.  In true Joe fashion, he had to leave the scene scruntching up his face and throwing his microphone down, implying he didn’t want to be bothered with the Hip-Hop trio.  A fight almost escalated behind that stunt, and Akademics had to try to calm things down.  What did Akademics get for his trouble?  Joe later went on his podcast, The Joe Budden Show, and called the man a pussy.  *Sigh*  Since then, Joe and Akademics have made up (or at least, they led us to believe they have), but Joe left Everyday Struggle on Dec. 19, citing “internal chaos.”  Migos went on to make a diss track about Joe called “Ice Tray,”  with lookalikes to playing the panel members of Everyday Struggle in the video.  They even have Lil’ Yachty spittin’ a verse in the song (he appears in the video as well).  Yachty recently informed TMZ that the song was all in good fun, and there was no ill will.

I have to admit, although Joe’s attitude is just…rude, he was pretty damn entertaining, and a lot of folks are saying that Everday Struggle won’t be the same without him.  I suggest checking out The Joe Budden Show, by the way.  Joe’s still entertaining on his podcast, but he’s also a lot more relaxed and has a much better sense of humor, despite the name calling.

George Zimmerman Threatens Jay-Z

Jay-Z and George Zimmerman

One thing about 2017, the ratchetness just keeps on happenin’.  Just recently, Jay-Z announced that he’ll be working on a documentary about Trayvon Martin and how he was killed.  George Zimmerman, the man that killed Trayvon (and was unfortunately acquitted of the crime), was none too happy about that.  He stated that he would beat Jigga, and that he knew how to “deal with people that fuck with [him].  [He’s] handled that since 2012.”  Basically, he’s bragging about killing Trayvon.

What an asshole.  I swear I can’t stand this dude.  Zimmerman even went so far as to say that if Jigga messed with his family in any way, “[he’d] feed him to the alligators.”  This stemmed from the production crew conducting interviews with Zimmerman’s parents.  Needless to say, black folks went in, namely Snoop Dogg.  Personally, I’d love to see Zimmerman try Jay-Z.  Yeah, Jigga didn’t fight back when Solange was whuppin’ on him, but I honestly believe that was because a) nine times out of ten, he was taught not to put his hands on women and b) he may have been feeling guilty considering that Solange was pounding on him because he was cheating on her big sis.  George Zimmerman, on the other hand, is an entirely different case.  He’s not a 112 lb. woman, and if he comes for Jay-Z, he’ll learn pretty fast that Jigga isn’t a 17 yr. old child innocently walking home armed with nothing more than a bag of Skittles.

All of Tyrese’s Cryin’, Whinin’ and Lyin’

Tyrese Crying

When I was growing up, the king of R&B whining was Keith Sweat, hands down.  Today, in 2017, his title has been usurped by none other than Black Ty aka Tyrese Gibson.  I know a lot of you are thinking that I’m being way too harsh, but honestly, I’d have a lot more compassion for Tyrese if his stories were more consistent and if he wasn’t hating on someone else’s blessings.  Sit tight.  This entry is the longest of all of them.

The Tyrese saga started around late fall, when Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was apparently in talks about starring in a Fast and Furious spinoff featuring Rock’s kickass character, Luke Hobbs.  Tyrese was against Rock having his own spinoff, as it would delay the release of Fast and Furious 9, because we really need another one of those movies ASAP.  *Sarcasm*  Tyrese texted Rock about not doing the film until he was blue in the face, and when the texts didn’t work, he went on to public Instagram and Twitter posts.  However, Rock took the smart road and decided to do the film, much to Tyrese’s chagrin.  Tyrese, who seems to have forgotten that Rock has his own light bill and mortgage to pay, as well as two girls to feed and another on the way, went all the way in on Rock on Instagram and Twitter.  Every other day, Tyrese posted some nonsense about Rock breaking the Fast Family apart, despite the fact that Vin Diesel himself congratulated Rock on his good fortune (not to mention that Vin realizes that Rock’s spinoff is good for everyone involved, as it expands the Fast and Furious universe).  Rock pretty much paid Tyrese dust, with the exception of a shady Instagram video he posted stating that “Big dogs eat and little cryin’ puppies stay on the porch.”

Tyrese later claimed that the real reason he wanted Rock to turn down the Hobbs movie was due to the fact that he couldn’t afford to have Fast and Furious 9 postponed because his ongoing custody battle for his daughter was breaking the bank.  However, Tyrese has a club, a private Benihana, as well as a private Starbucks in his backyard.  Did I fail to mention that he has a movie theatre in the backyard as well? He also has a private chef, multiple luxury cars (which he had no problem showing off to Rock during their one-sided beef) and life-sized Transformers figurines.  Sounds to me like Tyrese is doing what my mother calls “po’ mouthin’.”  He continued po’ mouthin’ on social media, and even broke down crying on a now infamous Facebook Live video because he couldn’t see his daughter and was running out of money because of his legal fees…or so he claimed. Rumor has it that he had an opportunity to see his daughter around this particular time, but he passed so he could jet off to Abu Dhabi for yet another trip to the Middle East (see Tyrese’s Instagram page, and you’ll notice that he’s taken these types of voyages countless times before).

Tyrese didn’t stop his nonsense there; oh, no.  He then claimed that Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith reached out to him and offered to give him $5M to assist with his legal fees. After Tyrese told that boldfaced lie on social media, Will and Jada let it be known immediately that they made no such offer.  By this time, Tyrese was being clowned by just about everyone for his antics.  He tried to do damage control on all the erratic posts and videos by saying that his unbalanced behavior was caused by medication that his psychiatrist currently prescribed him.  Now, I have a loved one with mental illness, and I can say with all honesty that the mood swings and irregular behavior make an appearance when the medicine runs out, not while taking it.  Now it’s true, everyone’s different, and everyone has a different reaction to psychiatric medication.  However, in Tyrese’s case, I’m not really buying it, not with all the stories he’s told this year.  He even lied about his wife being pregnant (and about her being black).  Sadly enough, he’s still immersed in drama.  He recently announced on a national radio show that he only married his first wife to keep her in the country, potentially allowing himself and his ex to be charged with marriage fraud.  Charlamagne Tha God jumped at the chance to give him a much-deserved Donkey of the Day after that bit of foolishness.

Whew!  That’s a lot of foolery in such a short amount of time!

BET Comes Back In a Major Way

BET (Alt)

When I was a small child, BET was a powerhouse TV network among the African-American community.  Everyone I knew tuned in to watch classic shows like Video Soul, Teen Summit, Rap City, 106 and Park, and BET Talk.  However, by the time I finished college, BET was looked upon as a joke with its lackluster production and the shortage of quality TV shows.  When other predominately black networks began popping up like TV One and Centric (which, ironically enough, is a BET sister channel, but it still gave the original network a run for its money), BET pretty much paled in comparison.  In 2017 though, BET decided to play no games.

First, they released The New Edition Story, a three-part miniseries that featured great production, excellent cinematography, and even better acting.  The miniseries introduced New Edition to a new audience and pushed BET back to the forefront.  BET didn’t stop there.  They premiered other great movies and TV shows like Tales, The Quad, Rebel, Madiba, and The Comedy Get Down.  Combined with the already critically acclaimed series Being Mary Jane and The Real Husbands of Hollywood, along with killer award shows like the BET Awards, Black Girls Rock! and the Soul Train Music Awards, BET has arguably claimed its position as the #1 African-American network once again.  Congrats to BET for being one of the few good WTF moments of 2017.

All the Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna Drama!

Rob Kardashian and Blac Chyna (Broken)

As y’all may remember, Rob Kardashian fell head over heels in love with Blac Chyna sometime in early 2016 and she soon became pregnant with his child.  By the time their daughter Dream was born and Christmas rolled around a few weeks after her birth, Chyna showed her true colors and dumped Rob like a bad habit, confirming what we all pretty much figured about their relationship.  Apparently, in 2017, Rob and Chyna tried to “work things out,” or at the very least, attempt to co-exist, but that didn’t go very well.  Chyna was havin’ her little fun on the side and she eventually let Rob know that there was no chance in hell of them officially getting back together.  This time, ol’ boy didn’t go quietly.  Rob spent the better part of that fateful July day posting all kinds of videos and photos of Chyna, and spillin’ all kinds of tea.  Everything from allegations of Chyna using drugs around their daughter to revenge porn was exposed.  When Rob’s Instagram account was closed due to all the lewd content he posted, he just moseyed on over to Twitter and continued to put Chyna on blast. Rob and Blac Chyna were trending all day, and I was right there, watching all the craziness unfold.  Here’s a few of the posts that are slightly suitable for work and children (well, maybe not children):

Rob Post 2

Rob Post 3 (Alt)

Rob Post 1 (Alt)

Rob Post 4 (Alt)

The drama didn’t end there.  Chyna decided to fight back the best way possible:  litigation.  She called the one and only Lisa Bloom to take on her case, and of course, Ms. Bloom went straight for the money.  It turns out that posting revenge porn is actually illegal, and Mr. Kardashian was looking at possibly doing a little time. Chyna also alleged that Rob physically abused her, and even filed a restraining order against him.  Rob fired back by also suing Chyna, stating that she was the one that was abusiveT.I., the king of putting his two cents in, decided to do just that, and the next thing you know, he was the one put on blast.  Rob retaliated by claiming that Chyna had a threesome with T.I. and Tiny (now why did poor Tiny have to dragged into this?  She was minding her own business).  Chyna even filed lawsuits against the rest of the Kardashian clan for harassment and for ending her short-lived reality show, Rob & Chyna.  Things have since calmed down, slightly.  They’ve both agreed to joint custody of Dream and Chyna’s even closed her lawsuits against the Kardashian sisters, except Kim (the reason for that remains unknown), and she dropped her domestic abuse suit against RobChyna is still seeking compensation from Kim, Kris, and Rob for ending the series.  Let’s just pray that these two will eventually grow up and co-exist for the sake of their child.

Part 3 coming soon!

—Written by Nadiya

The WTF? Moments of 2017 – Part 1

Ice Cube - WTF (Alt)

What’s poppin’, y’all?  As you all know, I was pretty much MIA from Southern Girl Entertainment for the vast majority of 2017, so I decided to make up for the time that we lost.  For the most part, 2017 was a really cool year (personal tragedy aside; I lost someone very close to me this year), and it was an extremely exciting year for entertainment.  Real talk, there’s been a lot of WTF moments this year; some good, some bad.  I’ve decided to list them all for you, to basically touch on all the fun we missed out on this year.  This isn’t a top 10 list, mind you.  As a matter of fact, there were more than 10 WTF moments of 2017; so much so, that this post will be split into sections.  So, without further ado, here we go (sit tight; it’s long)!

The Bow Wow Challenge

Bow Wow Challenge (Alt)

Like my girl Lovelyti always says, “If you live in your truth, no one can ever take that away from you.”  That’s a lesson that Bow Wow desperately needs to learn.  Long story short, earlier this year, Bow Wow flew out to NYC to promote his reality series “Growing Up Hip Hop,” and he posted a pic of his supposed private plane on Instagram to show that he was flying there in style.  Unfortunately for him, he got busted by a passenger on a commercial flight that caught him on the way to NYC on the same airline, not the private jet he claimed to be chartering.  To add insult to injury, it was revealed that the picture of the private plane was actually an advertisement for a transportation service in Fort Lauderdale.  SMH.

What makes this situation even crazier, is that Bow Wow doubled down and did his damndest to convince the public that the initial photo was genuine, even though he was caught lying.  As a result, the #BowWowChallenge was created, where folks flocked to Twitter to clown Bow Wow by posting hilarious pics of themselves frontin’ and fakin’ for social media.  Here’s two of the many gems they posted for nearly 36 hrs:

Bow Wow Challenge 2Bow Wow Challenge 3

Steve Harvey’s Bad Year

Steve Harvey and Donald Trump (Alt)

Poor Steve Harvey.  If you’re a fan of Steve’s like I am, you know that he usually has blessings coming at him frontward, backward and sideways.  However, 2017 hasn’t been his finest year.  First, he met with now President Trump at Trump Towers to speak about urban development.  Big mistake.  Then, he made an extremely tasteless joke about Asian men.  Bigger mistake.  Next, an e-mail that he sent to his staff leaked, which basically revealed that Steve will no longer tolerate folks bombarding him in the hallways and in his dressing room.  More bad publicity for Steve.  If all that wasn’t bad enough, after the NBA Finals, Steve got in more trouble for making yet again another tasteless joke.  This time, he caught up in trash talking about the Golden State Warriors with an audience member/Warriors fan from Flint, MI during an episode of The Steve Harvey Morning Show.  Steve, a die hard Cavaliers fan, decided to have the last word of the argument when he jokingly told the man to enjoy “a nice brown glass of water.”  *Sigh*  The backlash from that last incident was so bad he took a break from his radio show for an entire month.  Since then, Steve’s been a lot more careful with the words coming out of his mouth and the company he keeps, but he has yet to issue the public apology Flint’s mayor demanded.

R. Kelly’s “Sex Cult”

R. Kelly (Alt)

2017 was definitely the year of ratchetness.  Sometime around spring of this year, it was reported that R. Kelly, aka The Pied Piper of R&B, actually had a sex cult.  The news story broke thanks to the family of a young woman named Joycelyn Savage, who openly stated that R. Kelly has her “brainwashed” and living in one of his houses, along with a slew of other women.  A former assistant of Kelly’s backed up the family’s claims and also added that Kelly dictates how the women should dress, when they should have sex with him, and when they should bathe.  Joycelyn herself released her own statement, claiming that she’s not being held against her will, and that she’s perfectly fine.

Despite the fact that R. Kelly’s isn’t a stranger when it comes to sexual scandal, and another former “lover” of Kelly’s came forward, the Savage family pretty much discredited themselves when it was revealed that that Joycelyn’s father allowed her to live with R. Kelly to further her career in the first place.  Later, when Mr. Savage couldn’t get back in touch with Joycelyn, he called himself releasing a series of videos calling Kelly out and threatening himEven his youngest daughter made a diss track about R. Kelly.  Okaaayyyy…  However, other women have come forward since the Savage’s story was released, also claiming that Kelly’s been running a sex cult for ages, providing more validity to the tale.  As of yet, no legal action has been taken against R. Kelly.

IMDB Shuts Down Their Message Boards

IMDB

Ever since I was 18 yrs. old, there was a place specifically made for nerds/cinephiles where I would feel welcome (well, most of the time…more on that later) and talk about whatever movie or TV show I wanted, whenever I wanted.  That place was the IMDB message boards.  Whether it was the most obscure B-movie out there, or the most popular flick ever made, there was a message board for it, and I frequented them all.  The boards weren’t just restricted to the movies and TV series, either.  There were also individual boards for actors/actresses, directors, etc.  No topic or person was taboo.  However, that may have been the problem.  In mid-February of 2017, IMDB announced that they were shutting down the message boards permanently, and they only gave folks two weeks notice.  Apparently, the reason for dismantling the boards was because they were “no longer providing a positive, useful experience.”  In other words, there were too many trolls actin’ a damn fool on the boards.  Hence, the reason I mentioned that I usually felt welcome on the boards, but not 100% of the time.

Some of the boards were so full of trolling topics that I just stayed clear from them all together.  I even came across a troll that used to harass me back in my college days (on another website, sadly enough).  Yes, the trolls were a problem, but I always thought the purpose of moderators was to make sure that they wouldn’t ruin conversations for everyone else.  From what I gathered over the last few years, they either couldn’t handle things, or just flat out weren’t doing their jobs.  Either way, the powers that be at IMDB.com threw up their hands, and now I don’t have a place to discuss movies or TV series anymore.  There’s a few imitators out there, but it’s nowhere near the same.  *Sob*

And the Winner Is…La La Land!  No, Wait!  It’s Moonlight!  My Bad!

89th Annual Academy Awards - Show

This year’s Oscars had an extremely interesting ending.  Former Bonnie and Clyde co-stars Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway were tasked with announcing Best Picture, and after opening the envelope, it was proudly declared that La La Land won the coveted award.  Five minutes later, after the cast and crew of La La Land gave thanks, they later had to give congrats to the cast and crew of Moonlight…because they were the ones that actually won Best Picture.  So how did a musical with a predominately Caucasian cast get confused with a coming-of-age LGBT drama with a predominately African-American cast?  Easy.  They mixed the damn envelopes up, and poor Warren Beatty was clowned for the next month (although I must admit, he didn’t get half as much flack as Steve Harvey did for his Miss Universe gaffe.  Poor Steve can’t catch a break).  I still don’t get why Warren caught so much hell, considering that Ms. Dunaway was the one that announced the wrong winner.  Here’s the proof.

All the Rappers Wantin’ To Fight…Sheesh!

Chris Brown and Soulja Boy

2017 started off on a crazy note thanks to Chris Brown and Soulja Boy.  During the first of the year , Soulja Boy was caught liking a pic of Chris’s ex, Karrueche Tran, on Instagram.  Chris was none too happy about Soulja Boy’s appreciation for Karrueche’s bikini-clad pic (although he and Karrueche broke up ages ago).  Long story short, Chris and Soulja Boy started going back and forth on Instagram and Twitter, and their trash talk soon started to turn towards an actual physical fight.  Shortly afterward, 50 Cent and Floyd Mayweather got involved, and the beef between Chris and Soulja Boy became a PPV event.  Floyd even offered to train Soulja Boy for the fight, whereas Mike Tyson backed Chris.  If that wasn’t crazy enough, other internet fights between celebrity rappers started escalating:  21 Savage vs. 22 Savage, Kodak Black vs. Lil’ Wayne (that one-sided squabble was particularly hilarious), etc.  Thankfully, Chris came to his senses sometime around March and called the fight off, and the other rappers followed suit in their own respective beefs.  Some folks are mad because the PPV never happened, but I can’t say that I am.  I’m glad to see that Chris is finally starting to grow up.

Bruno Mars Gets Accused of “Cultural Appropriation”

Bruno - Dafuq (Alt)

I’ve completely fallen in love with Bruno Mars this year, so on the morning of the 2017 BET Awards, I was psyched to see that he was trending on Twitter.  Then I found out exactly why he was trending.  Some fake woke chick on Twitter (and believe me, Twitter is chock full of them) posted a million tweets about how Bruno was guilty of appropriating black culture by singing R&B music.  I’m a black woman, and I have to say, some folks are little too fast and loose with that “cultural appropriation” accusation.  Don’t get me wrong, some people are guilty of committing that crime (I’ll be nice and not name names).  Bruno, however, is not one of those people, considering how he’s always given props and respect to black artists, and cited the R&B groups of the past as his inspiration.  Black Twitter saw the chick’s tweets for what they were:  a bunch of bullshit.  As a result, they appropriately drug the woman and read her to filth.  Bruno, true to form, paid the girl dust, went to the BET Awards later that night and killed.  I’m sure the girl really got pissed when she realized that Bruno’s song choice for the night was “Perm,” in which he pretty much reveals that he knows how a black woman’s relaxer works (that’s not what the song is really about, but I’m just sayin’…he knows how a doggone perm works!  I’m impressed!).  Then he sat in the audience and promptly went to sleep.

Bruno Sleeping (Alt)

He woke up just in time to win best R&B Artist, though.

Bruno - Thank You (Alt)

I’m sure that chick is still salty as hell.  Probably got even saltier when Bruno performed at the Apollo a few months later.  LOL.

The Lies!  The Lies!  The Lies!

Phaedra (Alt)

Season 9 of The Real Housewives of Atlanta was their absolute worst.  It was boring, clearly scripted—I realize all reality TV is scripted, but the last season didn’t even try to really hide it—and the usual ratchetness wasn’t even amusing or entertaining.  It was stomach churning.  By the fourth or fifth episode of the season, I tuned out and relied on You Tube recappers to find out what was going on, seeing as their breakdown of the show was more entertaining than the show itself.  I can’t even bring myself to watch season 10, and even the folks that did the You Tube recaps for the past season seem to have tuned out.  When I found out midway through season 9 that Kandi and Todd were accused of trying to drug and basically rape Porsha in their “sex dungeon,” I still didn’t have too much interest in watching the show, but I heard that topic would be of considerable interest during the reunion and decided to watch it.  That was the only thing about the last season that didn’t disappoint me.

Long story short, it was revealed during the reunion that Phaedra told Porsha that bold faced lie about Kandi and Todd wanting to sexually violate her for God-knows-what purpose, and the blowout was intense, to say the least.  Kandi was distraught, as was Porsha (although she should’ve used better judgement), and the other ladies were rendered speechless from shock, except for Kenya, who gloated the rest of the reunion.  Phaedra, on the other hand, remained stone faced for the rest of the night, not showing too much geniune remorse for betraying two of her friends.  Black Twitter turned on Phaedra quicker than a gallon of milk left in 100ºF heat, and I witnessed the self-proclaimed southern belle instantly go from being a fan favorite to an absolute pariah.  After the dust had settled, it was reported that the ladies no longer had any desire to work with Phaedra, and the lawyer/mortician/activist officially lost her peach.  She recently told TMZ that she was happy to no longer be a part of the show, although previous news reports stated otherwise.  On the bright side though, I never saw Phaedra look prettier (seriously, no shade.  Phaedra’s always been pretty to me, but that night she was gorgeous.  Too bad it was revealed that she has a seriously evil streak), and Kandi gave us all GIF gold that fateful night.

Kandi - The Lies (Alt).gif

—Written by Nadiya

Part 2 coming soon!