Out of the Box: Look of the Week

16 Mar

Award season is officially over, Fashion Week is officially over. But the events they keep on coming. The annual FX All-Star party, SXSW, sparkly suits and an amazing magazine cover feature in this edition of “Out of the Box.”At the FX All-Star event in New York, Sarah Paulson and Billie Lourd looked very pleased to see each other. Black tights are still very much required with this weather so I am all in on Billie Lourd’s choice here. This green floral jacquard Gucci Resort 2018 frock and teal heel combination is a dream.

Meanwhile, Sarah Paulson is serving dramatic power dressing in a grey Dior suit. I thought it was a skirt at first, but nope those are the widest of wide pants. I love them.

An FX/FXX crossover that needs to happen.

Congratulations to You’re the Worst creator Stephen Falk and make-up artist Kristina Frisch on the new babyThose Saint Laurent shorts belong in 2001—this is another indicator that early ’00s fashion is making a dreaded comeback—but I love the top half of Keri Russell’s outfit. Switching out the shirt from the runway look for something less fussy was a good move and it is always fun seeing these two on the red carpet.

Season six of The Americans the new trailer is now less than two weeks away; it looks tense as hell.

No filter/just love. WE LOVE YOU❤️

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Taking this as a personal message to me. SXSW is a lot like Sundance in both the kinds of work getting showcased and the more casual sartorial leanings. The big difference here is the temperature. As with Sundance there are a lot of outfits to covet, which would work in my closet, including Abbi Jacobson’s print dress complete with a Peter Pan collar at the 6 Balloons premiere.Regina Hall ‘Drinks Well with Others’ at the Support the Girls SXSW premiere. A slogan tee I can get behind.

✴️✴️✴️. . @selashiloniphoto good job taking cool pictures.

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Mustard yellow and ’70s styling are my weakness. This D’Arcy Carden shoot is fun and also I really want that blouse. Miss you, The Good Place.On the European leg of his tour in Paris, Harry Styles continues to delight in his suit choices, switching out Gucci florals for Saint Laurent sparkles. I screamed with joy when this Advocate cover popped up on my feed. More magazines featuring Natalie Morales and Stephanie Beatriz. Please and thank you.


The Americans Final Season Trailer: “It’s On Us”

14 Mar

The Americans returns in two weeks (March 28) and a new trailer is dishing out end of Cold War anxiety. Philip all but quit the spy biz at the end of season five, but his wig wearing game is still strong.

There is a strong sense that things are not going to be okay for our fave spy couple because even Elizabeth looks rattled. In some movies and TV shows, smoking means a character is a bad guy, in The Americans it is a sign that Elizabeth is stressed. There are flickers of scenes shown in earlier trailers such as the aforementioned pensive smoking and a bloody Elizabeth, but here she looks panicked when in full disguise. Plus a chat with Claudia reveals what they are up against. It finally looks like things are swinging Stan’s way.

Matthew Rhys continues to be the king of expressing the erosion of Philip’s soul with a look of the eye. From sitting alone, enduring another awkward group dinner with Stan (this time with Aderholt) and explaining to Elizabeth that they are complicit in all of this. But with the appearance of Philip in a wig it is clear he is willing to do anything; maybe not for country, but for his family. Also his plaid shirt game has never been stronger.

And Paige has a decision to make about her future career; to spy or not to spy?

Plus new cute wigs including a look that made me think of Diane Keaton and a brief appearance from Max Medina.

The Americans returns for its sixth and final season Wednesday, March 28.

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

9 Mar

Award season is over, but there is still the post-party looks to celebrate here at TV Ate My Wardrobe. It has been a good week for fashion; kicking off with the Film Independent Spirit Awards, followed by the big one. The Oscars delivered on the dress drama even if there were no big surprises in the winners department.

Now for the after-parties with Vanity Fair’s annual shindig being the big draw. Plenty of incredible looks featuring new spins on recent trends. Plus a dash of Paris Fashion Week. March is starting just as busy as the previous two months.Now I thought Janelle Monáe’s hot pink suit from the Wrinkle in Time premiere was the one, but this custom Christian Siriano fire engine red ladysuit/train combo is THE ONE.

“I suggest they put a flag on a whole notha planet…”

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Monáe also posted this fabulous group shot from the Vanity Fair party. So many amazing people in one photo.Lena Waithe has a strong jacket game, as witnessed at the Emmys last year. This double-breasted Ralph Lauren Purple Label check and white bow tie combo is just as fabulous.


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And another amazing group shot. The official Vanity Fair photos from this party are always drool worthy, these ones by Mark Seliger continue this tradition.Queen Judith Light adds some ruffles to the proceedings; she could hold court in pre-revolution France or a 2018 Osacr party.

@vanityfair thanks for having us… capture by @markseliger So grateful for your eye ❤️

A post shared by Sarah Paulson (@mssarahcatharinepaulson) on

What a beautiful shot of Sarah Paulson and Holland Taylor. All the couple goals.Sequins are not just for Christmas as this award season has proved. There are also many ways to wear sequins including combining them with my favorite kind of ensemble; the ladysuit! Angela Bassett has gone from one kind of sequin pants to another. This Teresa Helbig number is a mosaic dream.Rainbow sequins conjure up all those ’70s inspiration feelings. Constance Wu in Markarian is making me want to grab a pair of stacked shoes and dance the night away. Of course I would take those shoes off first before the dancing. I don’t want to break my ankle. I know they are trolling us. I still ship it. And Mindy Kaling is crushing it in Atelier Prabal Gurung.One day I want to be able to call Patricia Clarkson, Patty. For now all I can do is marvel at Clarkson in another incredible Christian Siriano gown from the night.Zoe Lister Jones has gone the Constance Wu dress length route in magenta Sally LaPointe, which gives a slightly cooler vibe. They also don’t have to worry about anyone stepping on their train all night. An Oscar de la Renta princess style frock for Abigail Spencer, which is super pretty. Also Timeless is back this weekend and I cannot wait.
Now for something completely different with Karen Gillan in a whimsical Ronald van der Kemp frock that looks like a mural for a nursery. That doesn’t sound like a compliment, but it is.More Christian Siriano with one final glitzy frock from the night. Busy Philipps was front and center with BFF Michelle Williams last year, much to my delight. Philipps didn’t have such a dramatic night this time, but looks fabulous nonetheless. Speaking of Michelle Williams, she attended the star-studded Louis Vuitton show at Paris Fashion Week. This look is very much in her wheelhouse. Also one of the less out there/more wearable outfits worn by the celebs in attendance. Lots of leather at Louis Vuitton including this belted shirt dress as worn by Sophie Turner. A fun switch up from the Sansa Stark fur of it all. Speaking of fur (of the faux variety), Noomi Rapace looks like she is having the most fun in this ensemble. And I’ve got used to seeing Edgar Ramirez surrounded by fashion, but not with all this hair. Yesterday was the first Marvelous Mrs. Maisel season 2 table read and the first episode will be shot in Paris. I cannot wait to see what Midge will be wearing.

At the Miu Miu show, Mrs Maisel herself, Rachel Brosnahan goes for classic polka dots with a red twist.Christie is already her surname and at Miu Miu, Gwendoline Christie is serving up some Miss Marple/Poirot cast member vibes. This houndstooth coat and Peter Pan collar need to be worn by the star of the next adaptation.

Best of the 2018 Oscars Red Carpet: Metallics and Neutrals

5 Mar

Welcome! To the second part of TV Ate My Wardrobe’s Oscar coverage. This post has a whole lot of sparkle, white frocks, ladysuit tails and more.

For Part 1 head here.Wakanda Forever! Lupita Nyong’o wore a lot of armor inspired looks during the Black Panther press tour and this gold sequin Atelier Versace is serving up red carpet warrior to new levels. Danai Gurira wears soft blush Gabriela Hearst with a fierce edge thanks to the silver detail on her shaved head. Adding a touch of African heritage with a scarf is Winston Duke, wearing a fabulous Etro ensemble.

I really hope Black Panther will get honored at the 91st Academy Awards.A dress that shimmers and shimmies is the dream; Gal Gadot has the perfect Givenchy couture gown.I was thrilled to see Gina Rodriguez presenting and she had the gown to match in Zuhair Murad.Sally Hawkins does whimsical delight in The Shape ff Water and IRL in a sequin Armani Prive gown.More cape and ladysuit excellence from Sarah Broom and Dee Rees with Rees going all in wearing tales. I am also in awe of her shoes. Keeping it classic in white Calvin Klein by Appointment. Laura Dern now gets the great honor of once again being my lock screen image as I couldn’t not make the Dern/Gerwig pairing anything but that.Now for something completely different with a dash of leather daddy on the red carpet.

Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon took the cold shoulder trend in an unexpected direction in a cropped Jeremy Scott for Moschino jacket, leather harness and patent leather bow-tie.I saw Lady Bird for a second time yesterday and Beanie Feldstein steals every scene she is in. And she looks wonderful in ombré Sachin and Babi. The detail looks like roots from a magical tree. Perfect movie prom frock. There were a number of stand out white frocks yesterday, including Janet Mock in stunning caped Christian Siriano. Team Get Out looked pretty damn good and Lakeith Stanfield was my favorite guy in blue wearing Ermenegildo Zegna Couture.Jane Fonda mentioned that the Oscar set was reminiscent of Barbarella, she’s also serving so much sci-fi shoulders in custom Balmain. Oscar Isaac recently discussed the reasons why he decided to marry long-time girlfriend Elvira Lind and the pair look cool af at the Academy Awards. Her dress has a whole Scandinavian vibe and he looks totally fine with his wife being taller than him in heels. Last year Mahershala Ali was one of the best dressed award season contenders. And he continues this streak. It is like he invented the velvet jacket in Berluti.Couple faves Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani go super classic formal; Kumail ditches the pattern for the Bond look in Ermenegildo Zegna and Emily is a tulle queen in J. Mendel. The rest of the party pictures will be up on here later in the week, but I couldn’t not include Emily’s incredible change from sweet to caped snake charmer. It would probably be much easier to go around than climb over the seats, but I’m honestly a bit impressed that Jennifer Lawrence manages this in a fancy Dior gown I actually like AND with a glass of wine in her hand. No falling over this time. And for that she gets the final picture of this post.

Best of the 2018 Oscars Red Carpet: Bold Color and Pattern

5 Mar

After months of awards shows, the big one is here! And while the show itself was a bit of a snooze overall, the red carpet delivered on the bold color front. After the mostly black Golden Globe ensembles, the Time’s Up and #MeToo movements were present in the form of pins and speeches.

Culminating in Frances McDormand’s incredible speech.

If you want to know more about what an “inclusion rider” is, Caroline Framke has this covered here.

For all things Oscars fashion highlights there will be a couple of posts going up today. No, it isn’t sexist to ask what designer an attendee is wearing.I pretty much screamed with joy when I saw photos of Jennifer Garner when she arrived. This is some Sydney Bristow era level of amazing in Atelier Versace.Bubblegum pink is a look for the Oscars and holy shit does Viola Davis score with Michael Kors Collection in this shade. And she somehow manages to not look saccharine.
My favorite all-time Oscar look is Michelle Williams in mustard yellow Vera Wang. It is not surprising to discover that Greta Gerwig in custom floral Rodarte in this particular shade is an instant win. I love everything about this, right down to her lipstick color. This is the dress of a winner; Allison Janney is serving up so much sleeve drama in Reem Acra.How to wear a bow and make it look like art; the Nicole Kidman in Armani Privé story.One of the highlights of the evening was the Tiffany Haddish/Maya Rudolph presenting pair. PT Anderson you better make a movie with these amazing women. Haddish wore the Alexander McQueen frock she bought for the Girls Trip premiere, which she also wore when she hosted SNL. The Ugg slippers are a nice touch.

Maya Rudolph’s crimson Valentino frock looks particularly great in motion as she walks on the stage. And on the red carpet Tiffany Haddish looks like royalty in a traditional Eritrean Zuria princess gown, as s tribute to her late father.Sadly neither Daniel Kaluuya nor Timothée Chalamet won Best Actor, but they did seem to be having a good time on the red carpet. Kaluuya mixed things up in brown Brunello Cucinelli and Timothée Chalamet went the nearly all-white approach in Berluti. Armie Hammer couldn’t make the Film Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday because he was sick. Thanks to modern medicine he got into this velvet Armani suit and also managed to fire a hot dog cannon. Elizabeth Chambers also wears Armani in another fabulous asymmetric gown on the night.I finally started watching One Day at a Time, you guys were right, it is amazing. And Rita Moreno took things to new fashion heights last night by wearing the same dress she wore when she won an Oscar for West Side Story in 1962.The King of Wakanda isn’t going to wear just a regular tux to the Oscars. Chadwick Boseman has shown exactly how to do menswear during the Black Panther promo tour and beyond. On Saturday it was polka dot Burberry, at the Oscars it was Givenchy. Kelly Marie Tran showed the not so glamorous side of Oscar fashion on Instagram. I love her. And she looks fantastic in plunging Jenny Packham.  Betty Gabriel has been a style star this award season and she went big at the Oscars in a dress that is part ethereal, part sheer sexiness in Tony Ward.Winner of Best Original Screenplay Jordan Peele wore fire engine red to the Independent Spirit Awards on Saturday, but went with something more traditional at the Oscars in Calvin Klein. And Chelsea Peretti shows velvet isn’t just for tuxedo jackets. I have a new Elio shirt I want to add to my collection. James Ivory wears Elio on his chest and won Best Adapted Screenplay for Call Me by Your Name. Edited to add details of where you too can acquire an Elio shirt.

For Part 2 of TV Ate My Wardrobe’s Oscar coverage head here.

Best of the 2018 Film Independent Spirit Awards Red Carpet

4 Mar

Happy Oscars Day! But really this means Happy Day After the Independent Spirit Awards! My official favorite award season red carpet. The reason it is my favorite? Don’t get me wrong I love a fancy gown, but the ensembles at the Spirit Awards are all about having fun with fashion. These are the kind of outfits I would wear, suits have more color and the casual/fancy vibe is infectious.

Plus this is a ceremony where Nick Kroll and John Mulaney are the hosts and Timothée Chalamet wins Best Actor.

And for some Oscar weekend reading, check out my deep dive into the many eggs that feature in the Best Picture nominees for Little White Lies.

As with last year’s Spirit Awards, this was a blisteringly funny opening monologue. This time they called out some of the very bad men of Hollywood including the terrible apologies. And they don’t just limit it to Weinstein and Spacey. Mulaney/Kroll they did not drop the ball on this one and they really should host more award shows.

“Chalamet, you stay.” Especially because he gives the most adorable speech. He makes me believe that things will be okay.

For all the award speeches head here.

To the fashion! *Fires up “Crash Into Me,” starts weeping*

Both Saoirse Ronan and Beanie Feldstein look like ’60s queens. Ronan has a whole Twiggy thing going on in embellished Prada. Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani have consistently been the best dressed couple during award season and the press tour for The Big Sick. This is no different.

Here they demonstrate how you can pattern clash as a couple to the highest sartorial level. I am weak for stripes; Emily’s Whitney Mero dress is hitting all the right spots. Kumail is looking all kinds of Hannibal in ASOS plaid.

This dress also serves up so much photo drama. For their acceptance speech for Best First Screenplay.

Yesterday I found out that Dee Rees has been using Beyoncé’s stylist, this is another fantastic suit choice in a season of fantastic suit choices.

Ladysuits and Capes would be the name of my boutique (I’m sure I can think of something punny, but it is early). Dee Rees and Sarah Broom are high on the list of couple style goals. The lining of Broom’s cape and everything about this outfit is elegant af.

Mudbound won the Robert Altman Award and here is Dee Rees’ speech.Last night, I mentioned on Twitter that Aubrey Plaza always looks great at this award show and this is another dress I am coveting hard. Peter Pan collar and the contrasting sleeves on this Miu Miu frock elevates it. While I don’t love the sheer parts of Elisabeth Olsen’s Zuhair Murad dress, I am thrilled Ingrid Goes West won Best First Feature.If I could have any ladysuit it would be a green velvet ladysuit. Sarah Silverman is living out my dream in Hottie + Lord.Pleats, beautiful green pleats. Allison Williams looks a vision in Andrew Gn.Ava DuVernay is another Independent Spirit Awards repeat style queen. This time in puffed sleeves custom Greta Constantine.Patterned slip dress sexiness for Betty Gabriel in Tadashi Shoji. It’s almost animal print, without being animal print.Leaning into the leopard print trend is Margot Robbie in Louis Vuitton. This is what I mean when I say how much fun can be had on this red carpet.

The Independent Spirit Awards is an event that encourages good suits. A bold suit for Chadwick Boseman isn’t just for the Black Panther press tour; this Burberry polka dot look is incredible. And we’re in luck as Boseman has posted a lot of good photos to his Instagram, also featuring Black Panther co-stars Danai Gurira and Daniel Kaluuya. Get Out won Best Feature, Jordan Peele won Best Director. Peele also won Best Jacket in red double-breasted Calvin Klein. Patterned button-down shirts feature a lot on the new series of Queer Eye; the Fab Five would definitely be into everything Mike Colter is doing here. The turtleneck/suit jacket combo is winner, the sneakers work at this event and my Jay Ellis swoon levels are high.I’m still not quite over how terrifying Barry Keoghan is in The Killing of a Secret Deer, but this is adorable.Feeeeeeeeelings. So many CJ and Josh feeeeeeeeelings.A photo of a photo being taken and I love everything about this. Also Allison Janney looks flaming hot in hot pink Pamella Roland.Be still my Lady Bird loving heart. Why yes I am watching this again today.

“Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure” Book Review

2 Mar

A little background on my place in Bachelor Nation; I have watched one full season of The Bachelorette (Ali Fedotowsky, 2010), I have seen Burning LoveUnREAL and many clips on The Soup. I am not against watching reality TV and if I watch the first episode of a season that is me in for the long haul. I have not seen any first episodes of The Bachelor, which might explain why I have never committed to this show.

Reality TV that encourages a big weekly group watch (see all those years of Bake Off) is always welcome. But spending as much time as I do on culture/entertainment sites, as well as the other TV I watch and the podcasts I listen to, means there are many aspects of this series I am aware of.So when I was offered the chance to read L.A. Times writer, Amy Kaufman’s new book on the franchise, “Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure” I jumped at the chance. Kaufman is someone I have followed on Twitter for a long time and her feed is part of the reason why I know about big Bachelor stories when they break, such as the Bachelor in Paradise consent scandal from last year (this is included in the book if you’re wondering how up to date it is).

And you don’t have to be a Bachelor super fan to get a lot from “Bachelor Nation.” Having some of that background knowledge might add something extra, but Kaufman does an excellent job of explaining the ins and outs of this world to a reader who doesn’t know much beyond “Will you accept this rose?” It is part TV history exploring the dating game origins as well as how The Bachelor franchise came to be, the application process, tracking its success, scandalous moments and life after the ‘bach for some contestants. Kaufman explains her own relationship to the show including how she went from the inner reporting circle to being persona non grata; exposing the way networks court journalists before banishing them.

The personal aspects Kaufman includes add wit; this isn’t just a dry retelling of dating show narratives. And there are also testimonies from famous viewers including Melanie Lynskey, Spencer Pratt, Allison Williams, Diablo Cody, Amy Schumer and Paul Scheer, as they explain why they are drawn to this franchise. There is an examination throughout from some of the celebrities and Kaufman about what it means to be a feminist and a member of Bachelor Nation. A question that doesn’t come with an easy answer.

Also part of me now wants to taste the Bachelor line of wines even if it is terrible. I am very drawn to puns.

“Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure” is available Tuesday, March 6. I will accept this rose and highly recommend this deep dive into this reality show juggernaut.

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

2 Mar

Oscars weekend is here! But before this blog becomes awash with super fancy gowns there are a number of other events including the star-studded premiere for A Wrinkle in Time, the Essence Women in Hollywood luncheon, more fashion week and some stunning magazine covers to enjoy.Janelle Monáe sartorially dominated awards season last year. Now she is back with new music to dance to and this stunning hot pink Wolk ladysuit. The black and white touches are still present, but Monáe is very good at changing things up. A beautiful Vionnet gown for Gugu Mbatha-Raw that is part Grecian, part rainbow dream. Angela Bassett looks like a disco queen in sequin Greta Constantine. Take me to Studio 54.The cast of A Wrinke in Time went to Disneyland as part of the promotional train. And Mindy Kaling wore polka dots without looking too Minnie Mouse. In excellent TV casting news; Lupita Nyong’o and Danai Gurira are reuniting for the mini-series adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah.  The pair attended the 2018 Essence Black Women in Hollywood Oscars Luncheon yesterday (it was also Lupita’s birthday) where Gurira was honored.

There’s a fun ’80s twist to Lupita’s Ronald van der Kemp floral and snakeskin print mini. And Danai Gurira’s gone for an ethereal Loewe frock, but it is her stacked heels that I am coveting hard.Two very different ’70s style inspiration points, two outfits that look fabulous. Rainbow tassels for Tiffany Haddish, all the sequins for Yvonne Orji.

Also this video is from last week, but it is worth watching again.So many amazing ladies at this event and so many TV Ate My Wardrobe faves. The pattern and bold color of these outfits makes me so happy. At Paris Fashion Week, Isabelle Huppert leans into a classic look at Dior. This is an outfit I would wear, but I would not exude this level of cool.

I also stopped myself from using chic because now all I can hear is Reynolds Woodcock’s disdain for this word.It has been over a year since Westworld graced our screens, but the season two April 22 return date has snuck up on me. Well, there is still over a month to go and yet Entertainment Weekly is getting the hype machine going early with this new cover. Perhaps there is a need for a longer promo window to match the time it has been off screens.

Dolores and Maeve were the standout characters from season one so I am thrilled they are the chosen cover stars. And that Maeve has ditched her gowns for pants. The Teen Vogue print edition is no more, but that doesn’t mean the end of the Teen Vogue cover; the first digital only cover takes the big group shot that magazines like Vanity Fair and The Hollywood Reporter often deliver and makes it awesome.

So who is on the cover? Bria Vinaiti (The Florida Project), Sasha Lane (Hellboy), Margaret Qualley (The Leftovers), Ellie Bamber (The Nutcracker), Letitia Wright (Black Panther), Laura Harrier (Spider-Man: Homecoming), Storm Reid (A Wrinkle in Time) and Awkwafina (Ocean’s 8).

One thing I always end up talking about with the THR drama actress cover is what color scheme they go for with pastels being a go to palette choice. There are pastels here, but it isn’t bridesmaid leaning (thanks Kirsten Dunst for that comment). A mix of bold color, pretty dresses, ladysuits, flats, heels; there is a through line even if there are many different styles at play. I would love to see THR take a page out of Teen Vogue’s style book for the next roundtable season. I want to frame this cover. And for all things Lady Bird, I was joined by long time Teen TV collaborator Julie Hammerle to discuss the movie, how it relates to the Teen TV we have previously discussed and our own experiences. It is really fun.

Movie Team-Up: ‘Lady Bird’ and the Teen TV Legacy

1 Mar

Almost six years ago I was paired up with a writer I knew from Twitter to talk Teen TV over at This Was TV. We started with Angela Chase and ended with Rory Gilmore. Now I am back with YA author Julie Hammerle to discuss the latest teen girl sensation; Lady Bird. This is the first time we have deep dived into a movie, but even with the much shorter run time there is a lot to unpack. And a lot to talk about in relation to those previous shows. Join us as we get into the relationships, our own experiences, why the early ’00s were bad for fashion and who Lady Bird would hang out with from those other shows. Emma: One reason I really wanted to talk to you about Lady Bird in our format reserved for the best in 90s/00s teen TV is because this film feels so perfectly suited to the shows we have discussed in the past—My So-Called Life, Freaks and Geeks, Felicity and Gilmore Girls. Obviously we spend at lot less time with Lady Bird than Angela, Lindsay, Felicity and Rory, but even in that short time I think we find out so much about the complex life of this character and the world she inhabits. This is a testament both to Greta Gerwig’s writing/directing and Saoirse Ronan’s performance.

Now a quick bit of background in terms of my high anticipation levels for this film. This was the film I have been long been waiting to see, before it started getting all the awards love. I am a self-proclaimed Greta Gerwig stan. Frances Ha was my favorite film of 2013 and it impacted me on a deeply personal level. I love Mistress America and Twentieth Century Women. Knowing that this was Greta’s first solo writing project and that she was directing only made me want to see it more. Plus Saoirse Ronan is good everything, so that was another bonus. Then it started winning things and my envy at everyone that had seen it grew.

I had that worry that I had maybe over hyped the film and I would end up disappointed. This was not the case and it managed to not only live up to, but surpass those expectations.

Coming-of-age films are completely in my wheelhouse, one that centers on a teen girl even more so. Lady Bird is set in 2002, which was the year after I graduated high school so there is a lot about her experiences that felt very personal right down to the very bad jeans we all wore then. We’ve talked a lot about the transition between high school and college on here, but most of the shows we talked about dealt with one or the other, Gilmore Girls being the only one that did both. And before we get into plot specifics I want to ask you about your experience watching this film, did you have high expectations?Julie: I’m on the exact opposite end of the Greta Gerwig spectrum from you. I honestly haven’t seen much of anything she’s done/has been in. No Frances Ha, no Mistress America, no Twentieth Century Woman. I hadn’t been actively avoiding them; I just missed them. Absent any first-hand knowledge of Gerwig’s work, but also kind of knowing that she was a bit of an internet darling, I had CONCERNS that I wouldn’t like this movie. My husband told me he thought it’d be my favorite movie of the year, but I worried it’d be too precious, too “indie” for me, too “Hollywood’s idea of what it means to be a teen girl.”

It was none of those things. I loved Lady Bird.

I know we’ll get into this as we go along, but this film felt so authentic. (Other than Lady Bird’s obsession with Dave Matthew’s Band, which felt a little anachronistic to me–DMB would’ve been big with people who graduated high school when I did in 1997. By 2002, I feel like everyone had moved on to Ryan Adams or David Grey, Sad Bastard Music-wise. Maybe I’m wrong, though.)

Anyway, this movie exceeded my expectations, and totally fits into our series on high school/college women. How does Lady Bird fit with in Felicity, Rory, and the like? Who would she have been friends with?Emma: Wow! We really are coming at this film from different angles, much like our other teen TV convos when only one of us had seen the show during its original run.

And with regards to DMB, I remember seeing Greta on one of the late night shows talking about this song and “Cry Me a River” being super important to her when she was in high school (she’s a year younger than me), so I guess he was still a thing in 2002 for teens. DMB never really did much this side of the pond and most of my knowledge comes from Mouse Rat on Parks and Rec. This song (which I don’t think I had heard before) felt like the ideal song to cry with your BFF to. And for how awful JT is, that album and particularly that track are so, so good. The first time I heard it was at a party. I did not hook up with a douche that lied about his virginity though.

Lady Bird is completely her own character of course, but there are elements that made me think of Angela, Felicity et al. There’s the dyed hair, liking the band douche (he reads!), falling out with a bestie to hang with the cool crowd, wanting something more. And really these are part of the teen experience. I have done all of these. Again this is part of the reason why this movie resonated.

Someone on Twitter mentioned how they thought Lady Bird was in the same universe as Felicity (brb gonna write some fanfic) and if their paths crossed at NYU (or the University of New York in the Felicity-verse) I could definitely see them hanging out. Felicity is more straight laced than Lady Bird, but she does have her more adventurous side. If only Lady Bird had moved in during season 3 and not British Molly. I thought I had erased that arc. I had not.

What Gerwig captures in the writing and Saoirse Ronan in her performance is the wild swings between seemingly endless confidence and feeling like you’re incredibly worthless. Something still experienced as an adult, but adolescence magnifies these things. At times Lady Bird looks like she could take on the world, but then her first love turns out to be a lie (Danny obviously cares about her, but not in that way) and she’s also embarrassed about where she comes from. And she doesn’t entirely fit in with one specific high school group trope. She’s a theatre kid for a bit, she tries hanging with the band, but she falls between the nerdy and the cool characters. And I think this is how a lot of groups are at school rather than the neat classification. The relationship with Julie is the anchor to the movie and the focus on female friendships is a theme that runs throughout Gerwig’s writing, this is far more important than either boy. What did you make of this portrayal?


Julie: Are you talking about “Crash Into Me,” as the DMB song? That was a big one around these parts, but I’m thinking sophomore year of college, which probably would’ve been Greta’s freshman or so year of high school, so I guess it all checks out.

(Actually, fact check, “Crash Into Me” was on their 1996 album. I was definitely in high school. So, what do I know? Also, that song is a great “sob with your BFF” song, no doubt. I remember it being a big thing here because it’s a pretty love song, but its lyrics are also kind of dirty in a way that made us all feel grown up to be singing them.)

I will not abide any positive JT talk.

I want to live in a new universe were Felicity met Lady Bird (CHRISTINE) in college instead of that British Molly! I think the big difference for me between Felicity and Lady Bird is that Felicity went to college thinking she had it all figured out. She was going to be pre-med and she was going to make love happen with Ben. Then…things fell apart. Lady Bird/Christine showed up in New York a hot mess. She’d been a hot mess for most of high school, while Felicity was the perfect kid. In a lot of ways, Christine is poised to handle college better than Felicity was. She’s done more. Her parents have very low expectations for her, ha-ha.

Julie was the best. I actually want to see a movie all about her. We obviously share a name, but I just felt so hard for her. I was the overweight girl watching my friends kiss boys. I was the one with the unrequited loves and the out-of-reach crushes. (And I was the one who got good grades and knew I loved theater/music.) And, like you said, groups in high school are never just the “theater kids” or the “swimmers.” There’s a lot of overlap. Friends have varying interests. I liked how this movie portrayed that.

Also, I went to Catholic high school and spent my freshman year at an all-girls’ school. I loved how right this movie got Catholic school. We were friends with the nuns and joked around with them. We wore uniforms (my freshman year), but people did manage to individualize their looks. You could tell who was cool by their Birks and wool socks. We were so classy in 1994. And we were always trying creatively to meet boys–on the bus, at basketball games, through friends. What did you make of Lady Bird’s school life?

Emma: I am talking “Crash Into Me.” And here is Greta talking 2002 and music on Seth. It includes the letters she wrote to Alanis Morissette, Dave Matthews and JT. Did I already mention how much I love her? Because I love her.

And you are so right, Lady Bird (and yes Christine by this point) and Felicity arrive at very different points in their life and with very different parental expectations. I have a lot more parental thoughts, but first I want to discuss Julie because I would also watch a movie called Julie. Their friendship feels very lived in and it is a testament to the film how much it hurts when Lady Bird ditches her. It is the kind of teen moment that makes you feel like shit when you think back to when you did this to someone and when it happened to you. It is something we discussed at length with regards to Angela Chase and Lindsay Weir. It is a rite of passage that doesn’t get discussed as much as the other big teen moments (probably because the nostalgic feelings are anything but warm and fuzzy).

Just as important as love interest chemistry is best friend chemistry, Saoirse Ronan and Beanie Feldstein (sister of Jonah Hill) are amazing together. When Lady Bird goes to Julie after hearing “Crash Into Me” it was better than most climatic kiss moments. They dance around the kitchen eating cheese on crackers (sounds like heaven) and get baked together. I like that she keeps her crush to herself because sometimes you don’t even share this stuff with your bestie. And I love that she thrives in theater, whereas Lady Bird is stuck with the chorus and made up roles (“It is the titular role” made me laugh so hard). I was always in the chorus because I got such bad stage fright, but I really like the whole doing the school play thing.

I did not go to Catholic school, but I did wear uniform for the entire time right though sixth form (senior year). A tie and everything. I never wore my tie properly, for a brief period I wore it as a stumpy length, we’d pull the threads out, put pin badges on it and I wore the thin side for my last two years. And when I could I would wear sneakers and not my proper leather shoes. Such a rebel, ha. My husband did go to Catholic school and he found all of that to be both very funny and also accurate.

The parts that really rang true include falling for the guy in the band. The guy that likes to read and has ‘progressive’ ideas about cigarettes and phones. I have definitely heard both of those conversations a lot. I smoked roll ups so I’m pretty sure I spouted some of those points about fiberglass. It is good to be able to identify the pretentious things we thought made us so superior and acknowledge how eye roll inducing they are now. What did you make of the boys Lady Bird fell for? Have you seen Call My By Your Name? Timothée Chalamet manages to play two very different sides of the precocious coin.


Julie: I recently went through a whole bunch of stuff from high school and found some notes from friends, basically calling me out for being a dick. I don’t think their words hit me as hard then as they did when I reread them as an adult. Though, I was going through my own stuff at the time, and my friends hadn’t been very understanding of that either. When you get to adulthood, you (for the most part) know who you are, things don’t change very quickly. But in high school, relationships, self-discovery, all of it moves so fast. We all think we’re in the center of things, even though we’re not. And as much screen time is given to romantic relationships on TV and in film, friendships are truly what high school is all about. Toxic ones lead you to make poor choices. True blue ones (like Lady Bird and Julie) can bring out the best in you.

I loved how this movie explored Lady Bird with Julie and Lady Bird with the other girl (what’s her name?). It was kind of like Lady Bird having a Sliding Doors moment. Her life was one way with Julie, and something totally different with the other girl. In high school, people buddy up pretty quickly. By the end of freshman year, your place in the hierarchy is pretty much set. But Lady Bird tested that in this movie. She got to see what life was like on the other side, and…it wasn’t that great.

Timothée Chalamet is a delight. He’s the best worst kind of guy in this film, and he totally said she’d be his first time, too, right? John and I argued over that point. I definitely heard what Lady Bird did. I did see Call Me By Your Name, and he has such an interesting way of using his body–so gangly and awkward but smooth. This guy is going places, but we all knew that already.

He was totally the guy I would’ve been too scared to crush on in high school. He was way too edgy for me! I would’ve been chasing the gay dude or crushing on the teacher, like Julie.

Would you have fallen for the band dude?

Emma: One other thing I want to mention about the school scenes before moving on to boys in the band is the moment that gets Lady Bird suspended. We also had someone that was pro life speak to our class, but there was also a doctor present and suffice to say that no one was afraid of letting their opinions be heard. Not that any minds were changed, but imagine 20 precocious liberal 17/18 year olds presented with someone telling us abortion is a sin and yep we were all Lady Bird in this moment.

So boys in the band. I both dated and crushed hard on this kinda guy both at high school and university. My first proper boyfriend (relationship lasted 3 months) was the drummer in a local band; a lot of my long (and short) crushes were on lead guitarist, bassists and singers. Someone of these guys I am still very good friends with. So I definitely get the Kyle thing. And they all had great hair and liked to read. I am that teen cliché.

And Kyle definitely said “me too” when Lady Bird mentioned she was a virgin. Although considering how quick he was in the bedroom, I do wonder if he was lying about how experienced he was. Also the nosebleed link between Lady Bird and CMBYN. You’re right about how Chalamet moves. One thing that stood out to me clothing wise in CMBYN is now his Levi’s shorts hang off his waist. That he keeps hoiking them up.

I saw a tweet comparing Kyle to Jess from Gilmore Girls, which I get because the reading and the smoldering, but Kyle is way cooler. But at least Lady Bird sees through his shit immediately. Score 1 for Christine over Rory.

What did you make about the Danny relationship? Were you as devastated as I was when he broke down sobbing into her arms?Julie: That abortion speaker took me right back to high school. I remember being a freshman and being persuaded to the pro-life side of things for a brief period during that time. So young and impressionable! I would’ve been the one tsking Lady Bird. I was trying to remember if I remembered anyone getting suspended in high school, and I *think* one of my good friends was, but I don’t remember what she did. Cutting class? I never got so much as a JUG (Justice Under God), AKA detention. I nearly got one senior year for my skirt being too short, but I ducked into a bathroom before the teacher could catch me.

Kyle would definitely not have been my crush in high school. He would have been way too cool for me, and I would’ve known it. Also he’s much too skinny for my taste. I see the Jess comparison, but I have “concerns” about Kyle growing up to be the good guy Jess grew up to be. I see many years of douche in his future.

Danny would’ve been way more my speed, for sure. MY first “official” boyfriend was a theatre nerd. He wasn’t gay, though, and I was the one who ended up being a dick to him, but that’s a story for another day. I loved the moment where Danny opened up to her. It was my second favorite “understanding straight(ish) person shows great compassion” moment after Michael Stuhlbarg’s amazing speech at the end of CMBYN.

(Wow these movies have a lot of parallels. I guess they’re both coming of age movies, so that makes sense!)Emma: Most of the band guys were also theatre guys so they were part Kyle, part Danny. The douche levels were not high, well with the exception of a few. I crushed hard on one of the guys in the year (grade) above, but ended up going out with his friend because I am terrible. I also treated him badly. I ignored him to the point of him breaking up with me. Ghosting before ghosting. And part of the reason I signed up to do the school play was this crush. But also because I really enjoyed doing them. The crush was just a bonus.

The going into the men’s bathroom when the queue for the women’s is so long is definitely something we would do a lot at uni. Luckily I never caught my boyfriend cheating. This moment is so painful for both Lady Bird and Danny, because he definitely cares about her. Just not like that. The red flags went up when he said he didn’t want to touch her boobs because he respected her too much. And I also loved the scene where he opens up to her. Her anger is understandable, but this deceit was not out of malice.

Danny isn’t the only one that breaks down, there’s also the priest that cries on cue without having to even try. It’s one of those “holy shit my teacher is a real person” moment that is awkward for everyone. This examination of mental health was really subtle I thought. Also heartbreaking. What did you make of this storyline? The coach that replaced him was one of the more overt gags in the film (and reminded me of Mean Girls – why yes I do always mention this film, haha) but I think it worked well against some of the more nuanced jokes.


Julie: That’s one thing this movie captured really well–how mean we are (intentionally or not) to each other in high school. Those four years bring us some of our most intense first relationships (friendships and romances), and most of us were not equipped with the tools for positive conflict resolution.

The Danny stuff was so painfully real. I had a HUGE crush on one my friends during senior year. (Actually I probably liked him before that, too.) But senior year we were in a bunch of classes together, we hung out all the time. People assumed we were dating. I wrote him a pathetic love letter that he never mentioned to me. Then he started dating a girl (his Lady Bird, I guess). They were a thing for several years before he came out. I suppose I dodged a bullet…?

Same with Danny, I don’t think there was ever any malice intended there. He, and I and everyone, was just trying to figure out who he was. People got hurt in the process, but that’s high school.

The priest was absolutely heartbreaking, and I loved that his story gave us a small glimpse into Lady Bird’s mom’s life, and showed us how little LB probably thought about what her mom was up to day-to-day. As a parent, the mother stuff really got to me–the fact that her mom was basically the person LB blamed for all her problems, and that her mom was really a badass professionally, and surely LB had no idea.

The coach thing was good for a laugh, if kind of an overdone trope. I think Saved By The Bell did something like this, too.Emma: I’m glad we’re on to Lady Bird’s mom, Marion because what a performance by Laurie Metcalf. It’s a shame Allison Janney (who I adore) is dominating the Supporting category because Metcalf crushes it (and me) during this movie. There’s a lot of great moments between the pair, but the dress shopping moments really underscore everything that can be complicated by a mother/daughter relationship. There’s an antagonism with so much love sprinkled in. They fight then switch attention back to the dress shopping mission. But the part that really hits home is the “Do you Iike me?” This love is unconditional and yet Lady Bird needs her mom to reassure her.

The whole home dynamic is an interesting one and I grew up with super rich friends in a house I didn’t always want to invite people back to. Now I know that was dumb and no one gave a shit, but at the time I was embarrassed. When Danny mentions the wrong side of the tracks comment it made me want to curl up under my chair. I was that asshole. We spend so much time comparing ourselves (especially as teens) that it is so easy to not even think about how hard our parents work when there aren’t the fancy things to show for it. And luckily when there were job layoffs at my mum’s work she got a new job pretty quick. Our parents also do a good job of hiding these things from us.

I got strong Patty/Angela vibes from Marion/Christine; it’s far more combative than a Lorelai/Rory. And just like how I came around to Patty on the MSCL rewatch, it is very easy to sympathize with Marion. Especially when they keep the college applications a secret. And I get why Lady Bird didn’t want to tell her mom, but the fact that her dad was in on it. And while I’m on the subject of her dad, Tracy Letts is so wonderful in this part. From the way he gives his son advice about the job interview (that he just tanked) to every scene with his daughter. The compassion, the subtle heartbreak. But don’t lie to your wife dude. Again I love that Danny is the one that drops Lady Bird in it.

And what about the half letters her dad saved for her? I’m feeling teary just thinking about it. What did you make of these complicated relationships?Julie: I just thought of this, but my own daughter has been asking me lately if I like her. I’m not sure what that’s about, but I definitely do! That said, I wonder how much my mom liked me during my teen years. It really comes down to potential for Lady Bird and her mom, and, I’d think, most parents. Is this kid living up to her potential? Isn’t that what we all want for our children?

I also tapped right into the money thing. I went to a private high school in a pretty wealthy suburb, but most of my friends were city kids, like me. My family wasn’t poor by any means, but we couldn’t roll with the big dogs, so to speak. It never bothered me, though, but some of my friends had a hard time–driving crappy cars while everyone else was in brand new white Eddie Bauer Trailblazers. I just thought we were kind of fun and funny in our ancient cars.

OMG the tears at those letters! I have to say, though, I’d kind of love to see a movie/show someday where the dad isn’t held up as a hero by the teen girl while the mom is a harpy. Though I loved Tracy Letts’s performance, and his character was really sweet. Oh, and that scene where the son gets the job over his dad! Plus Lady Bird did need someone in her family who was fully on her side, so I’m glad her dad was there for her, even if he could’ve made better choices.

Also, I’m a big sucker for family dynamics beyond the nuclear, so I LOVED everything happening with Lady Bird’s brother’s girlfriend. I also appreciated that the film felt no need to describe the various relationships or how this family came to be. They were all fully part of the family, with all kinds of baggage.

What else? I’m really excited to rewatch this on Saturday before the Oscars!


Emma: Yeah I agree with you on the family dynamic stuff and now I’m trying to think of examples where the mother goes easy on the daughter while the dad is the tough one. I am coming up short. That one mention of Marion’s abusive alcoholic mother tells you everything you need to know. Greta Gerwig is very good at revealing so much about a character in such a short amount of words. I’m all about powerful speeches (see Call Me By Your

Name) but there is something to be said about this kind of economy of words.

The family set up and the lack of explicit explanation (beyond one of the letters mentioning about their issues conceiving a child) was wonderful. And it shows how unnecessary that stuff is. I love that Shelly defends Marion to Lady Bird. Pointing out that her mother has a big heart even though to Lady Bird it seems that all she does is criticize. It reveals just how caught up Lady Bird is with her own BS.

One more thing we need to discuss is the costuming. And especially the bad jeans. So many bad jeans. Why were they so baggy and shapeless? Why did we think this was a good look? During Danny’s teary breakdown I couldn’t help but notice the bad jeans. The dress Lady Bird wears to prom is perfect and I definitely had a hair band like the one she has. I miss that hair band. The super tight dress she tries on before settling on the dress is the most early ’00s awful. I loved it.

Also the level of messy in her room gave me flashbacks to the state of my bedroom. And also the pile of clothes I need to sort through in my current adult bedroom. Even after I tidy the clothing explosion will be back within two to three days.

So Lady Bird is up for 5 Oscars, I think it could win one (Original Screenplay), but if you could pick it to win one award out of the five which would it be and why?Julie: I definitely had a similar pair of jeans to the wide-legged ones Lady Bird wears a few times. I thought I looked great in them. Thanks to this movie, I now know differently. That was not a great time for fashion. But, looking back, it never is, right? Not until some designer reimagines it and we’re all like, “YES! Shoulder pads and power suits were a GREAT idea! We were all so smart in 1987!”

I was the biggest slob in high school. One of my friends used to come over and clean my room for me because I disgusted her so. I also had bunch of song lyrics I’d printed out and taped to my door–mostly Indigo Girls and Ani DiFranco.

The husband and I have been debating the Oscars thing. So much is up in the air this year, but I’m feeling them not giving it to Frances McDormand and giving it to Ronan instead. Since there’s been so much time between the last awards show and the Academy Awards, anything could happen–I also wouldn’t be surprised if Janney peaked too early. So I’m saying Lady Bird gets two–both actress awards.


Emma: I would love to see your Oscar predictions come true! I don’t think this year will be quite as dramatic as the last. But I am very much looking forward to it.


Julie Hammerle is the author of The Sound of Us, which will be published by Entangled Teen on June 7, 2016. Before settling down to write “for real,” she studied opera, taught Latin, and held her real estate license for one hot minute. Currently, she writes about TV on her blog Hammervision, ropes people into conversations about Game of Thrones, and makes excuses to avoid the gym. Her favorite YA-centric TV shows include 90210 (original spice), Felicity, and Freaks and Geeks. Her iPod reads like a 1997 Lilith Fair set list. She lives in Chicago with her husband, two kids, and a dog. They named the dog Indiana. Newsletter

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

23 Feb

Black Panther is now out, but this doesn’t mean the cast won’t be gracing “Out of the Box” this week. And yep, there is more awards season shenanigans with the BAFTAs, fashion week, magazine covers, premiere and other sartorially pleasing events.As with the Golden Globes and the Costume Designers Guild Awards—for more on that red carpet head here—the majority of attendees wore black in support of the #TimesUp and #MeToo movements.

Lupita Nyong’o keeps with her dresses that resemble some form of armor theme, this time in Elie Saab. Also with that all important twirl factor.

Before the BAFTAs, Lupita was joined by Danai Gurira in South Africa. These stunning shots could easily be a magazine shoot.

Formal ladysuits are still having a moment on the red carpet much to my delight; Ruth Wilson looks fabulous in Christian Dior. The sandals aren’t the obvious choice, but I think they work. As does that shade of red lipstick. This Zuhair Murad ensemble was probably chosen before the Black Panther press tour, but it is hard not to see the influence here. Naomie Harris looks stunning in this feathered and sheer number—sometimes I like these two things combined—and as with the Golden Globes the pants/dress hybrid is working like a charm. Fashion Week has now hit Milan, at the Gucci show Rowan Blanchard is delivering 1970s reporter with a hot scoop in a green jumpsuit. I love everything about this.Keeping with the ’70s look is Aya Cash at the opening night of her new play Kings. Cash spilled her outfit secrets on Instagram; this orange dress beauty is vintage and the shoes are Forever 21. Pop socks continue to be a thing I want to try out, but I’m not sure I can pull off.At the Game Night premiere, Sharon Horgan wears The Vampire’s Wife and of course I am super into this witchy prairie styling. 

Millie Bobby Brown looks like she is going to Spring Formal in polka dot Rodarte and I mean that as a compliment. This frock also reminds me of what Rodarte fave Kirsten Dunst wore for her Nylon cover. At the Brit Awards, Brown holds a white rose as a sign of support for the #MeToo and #TimesUp campaigns.Atlanta is back next week for season two! I am so ready. At the premiere Lakeith Stanfield, Brian Tyree Henry, Donald Glover and Zazie Beetz are all serving up strong looks. Glover is also keeping with the ’70s inspiration in Salvatore Ferragamo, which is all over this week’s column.And at the after party, Zazie Beetz shows how to go from fancy white halter to casual, in one easy grey sweatshirt step. These are some GQMF at a GQ event celebrating Timothée Chalamet’s cover, including CMBYN co-star Armie Hammer.  A good array of jackets on display.

After weeks of watching Darren Criss giving such an incredible performance on American Crime Story it took a moment to adjust to see him smiling next to a non-Versace looking Edgar Ramirez. Jamie Dornan is also sporting the beard I hope he never shaves off again; in this facial hair contest, Hammer is definitely trailing behind.  On the slightly more casual end of things is man of the hour Timothée Chalamet with Kid Cudi (yes I still miss How To Make It In America) and Black Panther’s Winston Duke. A pop of orange is the way to make a dark suit shine.Jordan Peele got to turn Janelle Monáe into a Hitchcock protagonist for W Magazine and the results are as incredible as this cover is. And ladysuits aplenty! GQ Style teased the Oscar Isaac profile on Monday night; on Tuesday they did not let us down. Not only is this a mesmerizing shoot featuring a whole lot of suits, but the interview goes deep on Isaac’s career, his process, how his mother’s death impacted his relationships and that he was shooting Star Wars and Annihilation at the same time.


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