Archive | October, 2014

Out of the Box: Look of the Week

31 Oct

“Out of the Box” is a smorgasbord of fancy pants attire, amazing winter coats (thankfully it has finally turned to outerwear requiring climates), new album artwork and an A-list movie star talking gender politics and Borgen.

Amy Poehler Yes Please hit stores this week and Amy Poehler has been doing the talk show rounds to promote her new book. This is a very cool and perfect look for New York in the fall. This is both excellent coat and ankle boot porn.

Zendaya ColemanContinuing the excellent coat trend is Zendaya Coleman before her Good Morning America appearance on Monday wearing a green tweed Karolyn Pho coat with a super funky Cheng-Huai Chuang drop-waist dress. Both are striking and the black tights/Prada Mary Janes are the spot on choice for this ’60s inspired daytime look.

Hannah SimoneSometimes a simple black dress is all you need and Hannah Simone looks statuesque at a party in LA celebrating the opening of Dsquared2’s first boutique in the US.

She and HimMeanwhile, one of Hannah Simone’s New Girl cast mates has been busy over the summer hiatus recording a new album covering classic tracks including Dusty Springfield’s “Stay Awhile.” This week the new She & Him artwork has been unveiled and the ’60s is infused in both the song material and imagery; Zooey Deschanel and M Ward look like they should be in a black and white French movie. In not shocking news I am very much coveting Deschanel’s striped tee/skirt look and her less blocky bangs suit this not so twee styling.

Keira PorterKeira Knightley appears in Net-a-Porter’s The Edit this week promoting upcoming films The Imitation Game and Laggies (or Say When if you are in the UK). In the interview Knightley discusses feminism, inequality and ingrained ideas of how things are meant to be and it is her comments about Borgen that caught my attention, the rule is if someone talks about this show I will get excited:

“There’s a storyline in Borgen [the TV drama about the first female prime minister of Denmark] where her husband is freaking out because he’s not seeing his wife anymore and the wife isn’t seeing the kids because she doesn’t have enough time, so he’s going to leave her. And as a viewer, I went, ‘Oh my God, she has to give up her job! She needs to spend more time with her family.’ Then I realized, ‘Wait, if it was a guy playing the prime minister and his wife was freaking out, you’d go, ‘Shut up, woman! He’s the fucking prime minister, give him a fucking break!’ I’m a feminist, somebody who is saying there’s a fucking problem, and I’m thinking that.”

The interview also covers why Knightley doesn’t want to play the fairy tale roles any more – “Why should you be told to wait for some fucking dude to rescue you?” – getting older and what kind of projects she is drawn to now she is approaching 30. The clothes accompanying this profile are stunning including Delpozo dress in the shot above.

Behind the Insta-Scenes: Photos from the Set

30 Oct

Welcome once again to Behind the Insta-Scenes! A new feature offering a roundup of the best behind the scenes photos posted on Instagram from a variety of TV show and personal accounts from the people who are on them. This includes anything from future episode sneak peeks, what’s airing this week, flashing back to the past and general on set (and sometimes off set) antics.

Amazing outfits, a returning show and on set affection are all included in this week’s round up of the best of Instagram.

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Meeeowww @coltonlhaynes

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Cat socks! Colton Haynes is giving good and appropriate mesmerized face to these sock beauties (as modeled by Felicity Smoak herself Emily Bett Rickards).

The dudes of Looking are making it hard to pick a side when it comes to the Patrick decision of Richie versus Kevin (okay Kevin already has a boyfriend, but it is still a hard choice). Here are Russell Tovey and Jonathan Groff being super adorable while filming season 2.

Ticking off the clones on the Orphan Black set and after an appearance by Alison last week, Cosima is popping up to say hello.

More Mindy outfit delights on The Mindy Project and this patterned delight is by Issa. Not a real rooftop.

So this isn’t technically a TV set, nor is Taylor Swift necessarily a TV star (she did pop up on New Girl) but this week has been wall to wall Taylor thanks to the release of her new album 1989 (which I’ve been playing on repeat) and this Marco De Vincenzo pleated rainbow sparkly skirt is everything. Taylor’s is autumnal in tone and it is also available in purple hues.

A selfie for Selfie and this show has become one of my favorites from the new fall offerings; Karen Gillan is a big part of this. It is super charming and makes me laugh a bunch, but I fear the low ratings might make it go the way of the big cancellation disappointment from a show with a terrible name last season. I still miss you Trophy Wife.

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Sorry darling, got hung up at work. #elementary

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Elementary returns tonight for season 3 and here is Jonny Lee Miller hanging around on set (I’ll get my coat).

Halloween Costume Tips from Felicity

29 Oct

Halloween is fast approaching and as the 90s revival is still very much a thing we are going to look to another teen show for costume ideas. Last year My So-Called Life provided the inspiration and now it is the turn of Felicity and the season 1 episode “Spooked.” It is an episode full of real life horror, dating dramas and an array of costume choices going way beyond sticking the word ‘sexy’ in front of whatever they are supposed to be.

1) Pick a current(ish) pop culture figure 

Felicity Halloween JulieThis episode is from 1998 and while Michelle Pfeiffer hadn’t worn the slinky Catwoman suit since Batman Returns in 1992 it is an iconic look and character that has been through several costume iterations. By picking a pop culture figure from a few years previous rather than whatever is hot right now, there is far less risk of being one of many people dressed in the same costume; 2008 was a sea of Jokers, 2014 there might be a lot less. This also manages to be sexy without revealing any skin. Going to the bathroom might prove challenging.

2) Go classic

Felicity HalloweenA vintage horror movie character doesn’t go out of style, but you might have to spend all evening explaining who you are or get mistaken for someone who is currently in the public eye – Felicity gets mistaken for Courtney Love, it is 1998 – rather than the Bride of Frankenstein. It is a bonus if you have a Felicity amount of hair for this costume and there is definitely a DIY approach as she’s wearing a white dress rather than an actual wedding gown (sadly lacking the cape train of the original Bride).

Also if you plan on wearing a costume that is part of a duo make sure the other person isn’t going to be a total flake. In Felicity’s case the dude is who she is crushing on and his indifference leads to comfort drinking followed by this:

Felicity 1.05 post vomA classic costume with a classic post “I’m so sorry I just vommed on you” face. More on this later.

3) The no effort part of a group costume using stuff you probably have in your wardrobe

Felicity Halloween BenBen is especially flaky during the early Felicity days and nothing sums this up more than his Halloween costume as instead of being the Frankenstein (Ben makes the common mistake or maybe he was going to go as the Doctor rather than monster, we will never know) to Felicity’s bride he is instead swayed by Sean’s idea to go as the Rat Pack. Ben thinks he might be Peter Lawford, he’s not sure and is totally whatever about the whole thing; he’s just happy he gets to look hot in a suit and later hook up with the Pink Power Ranger:

Felicity 1.05 pink power rangerAnother no skin revealing, but super tight costume. Felicity goes all meta for a moment as the real former Pink Power Ranger is someone Ben has already kissed on the show. In Ben’s slight defense he hadn’t fully committed to the doubles costume with Felicity, working against Ben is the many hot/cold signals he is giving Felicity like late night intimate chats and then pretty much ignoring her at the party. Be less terrible, Ben.

4) Make sure you have plenty of pumpkins

Felicity Halloween pumpkinsThe perfect time for low light and intimate chats comes with party prep. Be prepared for later disappointment (see numbers 3 and 4).

5) The “I thought it was funny” option

Felicity 1.05 ElenaNoel told Elena he would sort out costumes, he gets Subway uniforms (almost seamless product placement points +10) because he thinks it is funny. Elena is less sure and while this is very much the anti-Halloween sexy she does hook up with a dude dressed as the Tin Man (the Tin Man does end up cheating on Elena with her BFF at a later date so maybe that’s a con too). Negatives include many requests for sandwiches all night. And wearing plastic gloves.

Felicity Halloween NoelHowever, plastic gloves will come in handy if someone throws up on you. May change your opinion of said person you have just given an epic pep talk to/have a huge crush on. If it doesn’t it must be love or something like that.

For more on Halloween and 90s teen TV check out posts on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Freaks and Geeks.

Leighton Meester Covers Nylon: Talks Post Gossip Girl Projects

28 Oct

Recently I have found myself contemplating a Gossip Girl rewatch with Leighton Meester being one of the main reasons for this hankering (the other things being the clothes, music and noting all the times Dan is surprised by something Gossip Girl does). Meester has been busy after taking off the Queen B crown; she recently finished Of Mice and Men on Broadway and her new album Heartstrings came out this week. Plus a couple of movies with Like Sunday, Like Rain and Life Partners (starring another TV Ate My Wardrobe favorite – Gillian Jacobs) and Meester is covering the November issue of Nylon (on newsstands November 4) to promote these various projects.

Leighton MeesterIt’s a typical Nylon selection of clothes on the cover with all the patterns, fabrics and colors and while the star furry vest is giving me Independence Day feelings – this is the America Issue which I guess is where the star spangled vest and striped top come in – giving it a somewhat summery in tone, however the red is rather autumnal and it makes me want to reach for my favorite red lipstick (MAC Russian Red).

In the issue Meester talks about why she has pursued a variety of things post Gossip Girl citing how young she was when it started “once it was over, I wanted to do things that were more exciting and challenging and more memore my adult taste. Of course, that’s said with nothing but gratitude and love for that experience in that time of my life.” There’s also talk of the kind of roles Meester is interested in which explore characters who are “flawed, real human beings” and sadly “the roles of women standing alone on their own as whole, real, full people are few and far between.”

During Meester’s Of Mice and Men run she wrote an op-ed for The Huffington Post in response to the reactions she saw during most performances and looking at why the audience is so unsympathetic to her character’s plight. It is a thoughtful well reasoned piece which discusses misogyny and what it feels like to be on stage night after night playing a character who people laugh at when tragedy befalls them. Meester has long been an inspiring actress going way beyond her Blair Waldorf headband appeal and if anyone from that cast was to do a lifestyle website I wish it had been her.

Watch the trailer for Life Partners and hear the excellent title track from Leighton Meester’s new album below. For the full interview and more photos pick up a copy of Nylon on November 4 (available from both digital and physical newsstands).


The Struggle is Politics: The Good Wife and Compromise

27 Oct

At one point in “Old Spice” Alicia comments that she “doesn’t like pretending to be someone she is not” as a result of the religion focused interview she has just taken part in. The question of who Alicia is or rather who Alicia wants to be (or even who she is perceived to be) is at the heart of The Good Wife from the title of the show itself to every move we have seen Alicia make from first-year associate to starting her own firm.

Alicia’s life has been entangled with politics since Peter entered this professional sphere, but it is the opening scene of her standing next to her disgraced husband that blurred the line between public and private; while we have seen glimpses of who she was prior to this our relationship to her has been primarily from this moment onward and it was only from this point that the press really cared about who Alicia Florrick is. Now there is a new update to the Alicia Florrick story and the media went crazy for the next chapter in Alicia’s life as she takes a leap from lawyer to political candidate.

the good Wife 6.06 interviewThere is a lot of talk about honesty this week as Alicia struggles with the idea of lying about her faith (or lack thereof) to secure votes and this ends up not only compromising her, but also Grace who has been helping her brush up on her religious knowledge (treating it like courtroom prep). It’s a bad position to be put in and when Alicia ponders whether she should simply refuse to answer the question she gets told there is no way around this; “it is none of your business” is not an option to this personal question, even if it should be enough. It is an interview that could sink or swim her campaign, a campaign she has only just entered and if she told the truth about her atheist stance as she has done in the past then she is torpedoing her campaign before it has even begun. Alicia complains to Johnny that the “political rules keep changing” but the religious question is one that has been prevalent for some time now and I’m surprised Alicia is surprised her lack of religion will be an issue (it shouldn’t be, but here we are).

Alicia talks of a struggle and when Grace presses the question wondering what this struggle is exactly; Alicia’s answer is “Politics.” Alicia doesn’t feel the need for God or faith and this circles back to her answer a few weeks ago about why she became a lawyer:

“I like clarity. I like rules.”
“And you wanted to help people with those rules.”
“No. I know I’m supposed to say yes. I just wanted to be inside something that made sense to me. I never thought about—”

This is a pragmatic answer rather than an empathetic one and Alicia tends to work at things from this angle including her reasoning last season for why she ended things with Peter aside from their marriage as a political tool bump “It’s a decision. I like decisions.” This is pretty much Alicia’s mantra on life as she likes to know what the boundaries are and it is why she is thrown when someone is dishonest with her from Kalinda’s long ago betrayal to Zach’s more recent indiscretion and subsequent cover up. Now she is making these compromises herself and while this walking around the religion question by claiming she is open to the idea of it, is of course a barefaced lie it means she is still a viable candidate which is of course the goal of this entire exercise. There are two points where Alicia bristles during the interview; the first is when Will gets brought up and she doesn’t deny that she searched for faith at this time. Instead the opposite is true as when Grace approached her mother and told her that Will was with God now, Alicia rejected this notion and the idea of why this tragedy happened.

The second moment of looking uncomfortable during this interview and attempting to sidestep the question is when Grace is referenced and it is one thing twisting the truth entirely about her own beliefs, but it is clear she feels extra shitty when her daughter’s beliefs/guidance is mentioned. It’s not like Alicia can come clean to using her daughter as a religious cheat sheet for both this interview and earlier this season for a case. Grace gets praised at her Bible group and she looks extra guilty for this lie she is caught up in as her friends are so happy she has ‘reached’ her mother. Grace uses the same ‘struggling’ euphemism to sidestep how she reached her ‘hardened’ mother and this further compromises Grace.

the good Wife 6.06 Alicia and GraceAlicia’s ability to answer these questions without committing too much to anything shows she is already learning one of the all important tricks to the trade, in fact it is something she has been good at for a long time; it’s just she doesn’t normally have to use her daughter to notch up a win. Whenever Peter has run for anything Alicia has always been insistent that their kids are not involved and inadvertently both Zach (because of the oppo research) and Grace are already part of the SA campaign. It was inevitable that they would be a fixture of questioning and sadly the family/work balance is a question a woman is more likely to get than a male candidate and her role as mother/wife is something that will be taken into consideration even if it has nothing to do with the position she is running for.

The Saint Alicia brand has nothing to do with religion of course, but it would be a dent in that persona if she had stuck to her atheist guns and I can’t help but wonder when the other accusations of infidelity are going to be unleashed. My money is still on some kind of iCloud hacking ‘ripped from the headlines’ scenario.

Elsewhere, Cary is still getting himself into bother as he technically breaks his bail conditions landing himself a list of stricter terms including a ban from interacting with Kalinda; this is what she gets for calling him “the most honest person I know.” If Cary is going to break any of these restrictions this is going to be the one. Alicia hasn’t been very present at work and particularly with Cary as she wasn’t even aware that he had been rearrested until the next day and despite their many recent disagreements she refuses his suggestion of taking a break from work; in it together and all that. There is a lot on Alicia’s plate at the moment and as the season/her campaign progress I wonder what will fall by the wayside first.

While it was a meandering episode for the most part and even though I love Elsbeth I am finding it hard to care about the case she is part of or even the flirtation/hook-up with the just as kooky Josh Perotti. Except for the part where she got him with the single party consent, which was pretty awesome. Oh and every frilly shirt is an Elsbeth costuming dream.

The end is what really sells this episode and the return to their former Lockhart Gardner (& Canning) offices that have been trashed by the previous inhabitants (taking all the ‘F,’ ‘A’ and ‘L’ from the keyboards) is full of former ghosts and references to where they have come from.

the good wife 6.06 AliciaInsisting that Alicia takes her old office, Diane is turned down and there is something fitting about Alicia taking the office that holds so much meaning. I had reservations about the return to this office space, but the look shared between Alicia and Diane as she sits at what was once Will’s desk it is enough to convince me that this isn’t regression at all. This is all through very misty eyes of course and I don’t know why I hadn’t considered who would get Will’s office, but this hit me like a sucker punch of emotions. His name isn’t even uttered in this episode; however his presence is clearly felt.

The Good Wife 6.06 DianeDiane standing defiant in her office while wearing yet another magnificent pin is something I will never get bored with; she thought she was doing the kind thing by offering to take Will’s former work abode by suggesting she needs a new start, but she sees Alicia will be more than fine in these surroundings. The slight mirroring between Alicia and Diane in this scene comes in part from their attire as both are working a zipped look, with Diane’s No. 35 jacket being far more showy with fur cuffs and trimmings than Alicia’s Akris belted grey dress and this fits their style as Diane tends to lean towards opulent detail whereas Alicia sticks to clean lines. Emotions are running high for both women and it is a big moment for them and us as an audience watching this exchange.

The Alicia we met in that pilot episode is so far removed from the one we see now and while Diane has been an influence on her, Will’s impact was far more than just romantic and when Alicia references how different things are from six years ago in her interview Will is a big part of that. Returning to the place where she started is not a step back for Alicia, it might be a regression for Cary who has been pushed to the side once again as his legal problems continue. Cary has always played second fiddle in these offices and it is understandable why he voted against moving back here no matter how many infrastructure problems their current home has. All control is getting wrestled away and while Alicia reassures him that they are in this together with him tucked away in David Lee’s former office and Alicia being so close to Diane they are aligned in both proximity and most recently with their decision making. Cary is the one making all the work compromises and it probably won’t be long before Cary makes a terrible hook-up decision as he did in “Old Spice.”


Out of the Box: Look of the Week

24 Oct

“Out of the Box” is serving up an almost all Elle Women in Hollywood rundown with a bonus fantasy casting prospect courtesy of the GQ Gentlemen’s ball. There’s a shift into fall threads and a whole lot simple designs with a twist sticking with a blue/black/white color palette. Oh and the event was in association with Calvin Klein, this is pretty much what most attendees are wearing.

Lizzy CaplanLizzy Caplan’s color block big collar number is like the Calvin Klein sporty twist on this Louis Vuitton outfit Michelle Williams wore to the Cabaret opening night. The zip details give it a playful edge and it’s a super cute dress.

Ashley MadekweWearing a Calvin Klein LBD with a difference thanks to the addition of a metallic bib is Ashley Madekwe and this is another stunning simple look with a slight edge.

Kerry WashingtonMore dramatic zip detail and an even more dramatic neckline, which looks like the fanciest serviette; Kerry Washington is totally pulling off a dress that might be too much for others. The dash of blue eye makeup doesn’t delve into matchy matchy territory and I love her oxblood nail color next to navy of the dress.

Tina FeySo we’ve had a LBD with a twist and now here’s just a simple and effective LBD from Tina Fey.

Brie LarsonAnd another very simple outfit from one of the cover stars of the Women in Hollywood issue of Elle and Brie Larson hits one of my sweet spots for a fancy(ish) pants event as I’m a sucker for the menswear influence (owning a really good lady tux is the dream)The only thing that doesn’t quite work is going full monochromatic with the Louboutin pumps (which are a slightly different shade of white).

Joshua Jackson and Taylor KitschI would make a #TrueDetectiveSeason2 gag here if one of them wasn’t probably/definitely been cast, but if someone could cast ‘Grizzly McBeardy’ Andrew Garfield, this dashing and well tailored Joshua Jackson and a very Riggins looking Taylor Kitsch in something then I would be thrilled. Make this happen casting people. Oh and maybe trim Andrew Garfield’s beard down just a smidge (okay a few inches). For now we have this excellent image thanks to the GQ Gentlemen’s Ball.

Behind the Insta-Scenes: Photos from the Set

23 Oct

Welcome once again to Behind the Insta-Scenes! A new feature offering a roundup of the best behind the scenes photos posted on Instagram from a variety of TV show and personal accounts from the people who are on them. This includes anything from future episode sneak peeks, what’s airing this week, flashing back to the past and general on set (and sometimes off set) antics.

This week we’ve got a whole array of photos ranging from press day outfits, a shout out to Spirit Day, prop hair (and where it is stored) and a maybe flashback hairstyle.

Dressed all in purple for Spirit Day and somewhat suburban crime duo Alison (Tatiana Maslany) and Donnie (Kristian Bruun) are rocking this color alongside Orphan Black co-creator Graeme Manson.

Before the excellent and super smutty Hannibal PaleyFest panel Mads Mikkelsen, Hugh Dancy and Caroline Dhavernas took part in a gif reaction Q&A of sorts for the official Hannibal Tumblr. They also had a Will and Hannibal Funko doll on hand and some mini white boards to deliver messages to fans.

New Girl wasn’t on this week, but we do have a teaser from Hannah Simone. If the shorter ‘do is anything to go by I think we could be getting a Hannah Simone (rather than the younger actress who plays Cece and looks exactly like Hannah Simone) featuring Cece at school flashback.

Oh, hello! Kroll Show will be back for a third season soon and this Comedy Central post suggests the return of Gil and George. Will there be too much tuna once again?

Mindy Kaling’s press day attire is just as cute as her Mindy Lahiri’s threads and these Piamita separates are a delight.

Watch out when you go looking for strawberries on the set of The Walking Dead as you might end up with your hand in a bag full of Rick’s beard hair.

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#rookiemag #3

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The third Rookie yearbook was released yesterday and the ladies from Broad City are showing off their featured pages. Having bought the previous two editions, I can say that I will definitely be picking this up even if I’m still a smidge older than the demo.

TV Rewind: Felicity, “Surprise” & “One Ball, Two Strikes”

23 Oct

Felicity, Episodes 3.5 & 3.6
“Surprise” & “One Ball, Two Strikes”
Original Air Dates: Nov. 1 & 8, 2000

Felicity 3.06 Elena

Emma: As we predicted Ben did indeed find out about Felicity’s drunken mistake and the mistake is she passed out in another dude’s bed. It doesn’t matter to Ben that she didn’t do anything besides take her top off because a) she couldn’t initially remember whether she had slept with Randy (I can’t believe this is his name) and b) she didn’t tell Ben it happened and he found out via an email. His anger at this whole thing is understandable, except for the super anger part, that is not cool. Of course he’s going to pissed that his girlfriend got so wasted she took her top off and slept in another dudes bed. Plus the whole lying factor.

Bad form from Noel and Dr Pavone encouraging her to keep it a secret as this is terrible advice. I get that Noel was trying to do the right thing by both Ben and Felicity as he knew there was a surprise party, but with that email flyer out there it is some Sean levels of dumb advice. Dr Pavone thinks Felicity just wants to unburden her guilt, which yeah she probably does but it’s also the adult thing to do when he’s blatantly going to find out.

I’ve skipped ahead so I’m going to go back to the beginning and raise an eyebrow at the timeline of this episode and the last one we discussed – so this is meant to be the same day as the end of “Greeks and Geeks” and we’ve not heard Felicity’s birthday getting mentioned until now. Hmm. Scepticism aside, we do get to see Felicity going to see the doctor and getting the morning after pill (not from the NYU health service by the looks of things) and getting a small dose of judgement from the doctor. Look lady she already feels shitty enough without your sneering that tomorrow is her birthday.

The email discovery comes courtesy of Noel’s new computer fixing job and this brings up issues of consent with the photo of Felicity that has been used. She is very rightly hacked off they’ve used her image and a photo she can’t remember being taken. This plot is not as insidious as some of the very horrific, real life college/frat video/photo stories in the recent press and I wonder if this show was on now how they would deal with this. It’s 2000 and this email blast feels so quaint considering where we are now, but I had full on stomach churning tension feelings as Richard was checking his emails.

Once again I am impressed with how this show deals with sexual health issues and general health issues over both episodes with Sean. Felicity has made a mistake and it did in love getting blackout drunk, however I don’t get the impression that this is a ‘don’t drink, kids’ PSA. It’s definitely more of a ‘check your balls and go see a doctor if there is anything unusual’ PSA. Before we head into Sean territory, what did you think of the whole Felicity reveal?

And doesn’t Randy look a whole lot like MPDG Eli from S1?! Which also brings me to slight trouble in Ben and Noel friendship paradise. And the episode started so adorably between them.

Felicity 3.05 Ben and NoelJulie: OK. I just put randy and Randy together.

And, yeah, that nurse was every timid patient’s worst nightmare. You’re supposed to be helpful, woman. You’re supposed to want people to feel comfortable seeking help from you. You’re not doing your job.

Also the email thing vs. today’s media onslaught was really interesting. I mean, I check my email 4700 times a day, thanks to the phone. But back in 2000, we were only checking whenever we had access to a computer. And, if I remember correctly, I think we only moved to webmail right around that time. Before that, you had to be at a computer with an internet portal for the university, I think. I don’t remember, but I do remember that our early college emails were text only and all black and white. I am old.

As far as the Ben and Felicity stuff, A) she did not handle ANY of this well and B) I definitely told my TV after Ben got jumped at the end of the second episode, “Yup, he had to see that coming.” These two episodes were a master class in doing the wrong thing.

I don’t think Dr. Pavone’s advice was completely off, other than the fact that there was no way Ben wasn’t going to find out about Felicity’s night. EVERYONE knew she didn’t sleep back at her dorm that night. Someone was going to slip about that, and then the truth would come out. The email just sped everything up. But, since Dr. Pavone didn’t know that there were other friends involved in the situation, I think her telling Felicity to keep it to herself was kinder (assuming Felicity could find a way to fend off Ben’s sex advances while waiting for her STD test results). OK, never mind. Dr. Pavone was way wrong.

What Felicity did that was the MOST wrong, though, was asking Randy to talk to Ben. Give it up, girl. Move on. Yes, Ben is mad at you. Quit dragging Randy into this. What good could POSSIBLY come from Ben talking to Randy? No good. No good, and a lot of punching.

Ben, other than the punching, was in the right, in my opinion. Yes, he was hard on Felicity, but all he had was the fact that she didn’t remember anything, there was a picture of her topless, and Randy’s word. That’s not a lot to go on. Merely the fact that she allowed herself to get into that situation had to be disturbing for him. That said, I think a lot of this problem could’ve been rectified if he had just let Felicity talk for once, and if she had just apologized and said, “I understand why you’re mad. Yes, nothing happened with Randy, but the fact that I allowed myself to get into the position where something might have happened, is also problematic. I’m very sorry, and I promise never to let it happen again.” But of course, things had to get much more dramatic than that.

Before we move on to Sean’s balls, I just want to say before I forget, that when Felicity was telling everyone that the paintings with the red dots had been sold, I said (to my TV), “Has Molly also been sold, because she has a red dot on her forehead.”

Felicity 3.06 paintingEmma: It’s now clear why Ben’s father stopped by at the start of this season and not only to show the daddy issues are strong here, but also to emphasize where Ben gets his anger issues from. It’s dumb that Felicity asked Randy to talk to Ben and it’s even more dumb that Randy did it while Ben was sitting at a bar with a drink in his hands. Terrible, terrible idea. Randy didn’t deserve the four punches he took (and the way Ben was going I thought he was going to put his hand through his skull), but this really wasn’t the best way to go about it. And yeah Ben also did deserve the retribution, even if it was very melodramatic in the set up.

Now that Ben and Felicity have made up is this going to be the elephant in every argument? I always knew there were going to be issues this season between them, but ugh I’m annoyed it happened this quickly. It’s surprising that Felicity is the one who fucked up and I pretty much had Ben pegged for the one to cause the friction. I’m glad our lead has flaws and she does fuck up, I just hope the next run of episodes isn’t miserable.

Approaching Ben in a bar doesn’t go so well for Noel and I get why Noel is reaching out to his now friend, however it’s one thing Ben coming to him and crossing the personal boundary line telling him his “I knocked a girl up in school” as opposed to Noel’s “oh I’ve been there with Felicity” comparison. He’s trying to be a good friend and I bet he feels guilty for telling Felicity to wait, this is not the solution and it’s not surprising Ben isn’t receptive to this advice.

Ha on the Molly thing at the art show and yeah she continues to wear bindis and be generally annoying.

This was also the very rare instance where someone’s art on TV didn’t make me cringe, the symbolism is on the nose, but it was a rather good simple image. Yay Felicity!

Now onto Sean’s balls and I’m glad Sean has been given a story that doesn’t involve his documentary or some other scheme. Yes it’s super shitty they’ve given him cancer, but this is a meaty (hmm maybe bad word choice) opportunity for this character. It’s also an important story to tell as dudes are less likely to go see a doctor about these matters and particularly at a younger age (how old is Sean?). This is around the time Steve from Sex and the City also had testicular cancer (and also had to have a testicle removed) and I wonder if this was a story trend (Lance Armstrong had become the famous face of testicular cancer in the mid-90s, I might be reaching for a link).

Regardless, they did the whole it’s awkward for dudes to talk about this stuff for each other, though I do get why Ben and Noel passed on looking at his balls and told him to go to the doctor instead. Ben doesn’t want Sean to say the word testicles because it’s gross and Noel pipes up that it’s like when a woman says labia. I don’t know if I’ve ever said labia, except right now of course.

Sean is embarrassed to tell Meghan and she’s worried he has crabs. The moral of these two episodes is tell your beloved about whatever shit you have going on. Meghan is pretty great with walking Sean down off the ledge as he goes into denial about what’s going on and I’m so glad they’ve made them a for real couple. Everyone has a story about someone they know who died from not getting treatment/getting treatment too late and Meghan doesn’t want to have her own story like that. This is extra great coming from her as she has stories for everything.

Cancer isn’t funny, but I’m glad there was still humor after all the trauma and denial. The peanuts gag could have come across as cruel, but it’s Richard and it’s rather sweet.

There’s a whole thing between Ben and Sean, with Sean telling a Ben that he’s needs to get his shit together. It’s something Ben needs to hear and it’s the first bit of advice he gives a go. In this scene Ben is wearing a black beanie, he should never wear it again because it looks awful. And yes Ben you are out of control and he needs to find a better way to deal with things

What did you make of this Sean centric story?

Felicity 3.06 Richard and NoelJulie: I loved the way Meghan handled Sean’s ball scare. The speech about not wanting to have a horrible story about testicular cancer was spot on. I also loved the way she called him out for being a dreamer, who just assumes everything is going to work out, and this time, in this instance, he actually has to live in reality and face the fact that this is serious business. The two of them together are delightful. They really bring out the best in each other.

And while this was definitely a Hot Topic of the Times that they were tackling on this show (I’m pretty sure Lance Armstrong was the impetus), I think giving one of the characters access to the kind of perspective that comes with a death scare like that worked well. Sean was the one who called out Ben for running away from Felicity, and he was able to tell Ben, with certainty, that if he didn’t forgive her, it would eat away at him.

It also gave us a little insight into Tracy’s faith, and while I’m not religious, I thought what he said was beautiful and positive and exactly what Sean needed to hear.

And, yeah, Sean should’ve definitely told Ben to torch that hat.

Now, I think we can move on to what we really want to talk about, which is Noel’s new job as a computer genius. In the first episode, he became the object of his client’s affection (and started to suspect that Richard might be gay, which I’m really sad he isn’t because he’d be a great gay character and very different from Javier). In the second episode, Noel’s client was a hot junior dance major played by none other than Ms. TYRA BANKS.

How was Tyra’s acting for you? Did you catch her smizing at all? Was her hooch tooched?

Felicity 3.06 Meghan and SeanEmma: I agree with you on the Tracy/Sean conversation and like you I am not religious, but it shows how it can offer comfort particularly at a time like this in the form of a universal language. Tracy’s beliefs have only been spoken about it terms of sex before marriage prior to this and I’m glad to see them referenced in a different way for once.

While I’m on the subject of Tracy he goes away for the weekend in “One Ball, Two Strikes” as part of Habit for Humanity and Elena says she’ll help Tracy’s partner with his sociology work. In a point of contrivance Tracy’s partner happens to be Finn, the hot guy from across the hall who Elena has a crush on. Of course they end up doing the work in Elena’s bedroom and even though they don’t do anything initially, Finn falls asleep and when he wakes up smooching happens. Gross morning breath alert. Finn’s all Tracy is my friend, but who cares because I’m into you and Elena succumbs to the long standing crush. Elena feels guilty for what she did and I wonder if she’ll take the Dr Pavone don’t say anything route or whether she’ll end up spilling (I predict the latter).

Noel makes a couple of misteps other than the Felicity/Ben shenanigans. First he assumes Richard is gay because of a photo and while he’s trying to be a good friend it’s so awkward and he goes about it in a very naive way. I really wish we could have seen the apology email. Richard is a virgin and he’s never kissed a girl, something he is very embarrassed about – Meghan finds the whole thing hilarious and while Richard is embarrasses it’s clear none of his friends think any less of him because of it – but by the end of the episode he gets a smooch off Molly. Which, I guess is the best thing she’s done so far. Maybe.

The other bad Noel act is some of his creeper antics with the one and only Tyra. He peeks on her while she is getting changed, which makes me question why no one on TV ever shuts the bathroom door when there is someone in the next room and they’re getting into their undies/naked. He also looks in her diary. Bad Noel.

Ah yes the acting style is very much a combination of her whisper voice and that super upbeat thing she does whenever they do anything awful and over acted on ANTM. It’s not terrible, but it definitely in a different lane to everyone else on the show. If only Tyra had been to Harvard Business School at this point.

Does Noel stand a chance with Tyra? Were you just as skeezed out by his creeping as I was?

Felicity 3.06 TyraJulie: I feel like the less said about the Elena/Finn situation the better. He’s super skeevy. He hooked up with Julie and now he’s willing to throw a bro under the bus to get to his ‘ho. Not cool, Finn. And not cool, Elena. Tracy doesn’t deserve any of this.

While Noel did not handle the “Is Richard gay thing” well, I did like the storyline, because I think we all had those friends in college everyone assumed was gay but not out yet. Most people (at least back in the late ’90s) do not show up at school out and proud and sure of their sexuality. I think Noel was trying to be supportive (like he wasn’t with his brother back in Season 1), but I don’t think this is a mistake he’ll make again.

I’m assuming Tyra’s coming back, otherwise what was the point of Noel looking in her journal (other than to have him spill the coffee). Maybe that was it. I don’t know. I thought she acquitted herself well, but yeah, what’s with the open door policy? Between that and Feliciben’s living room bathtub, there’s not a lot of privacy at the University of New York.

Where does the show go from here? Ben and Felicity are back on track. Sean’s going to be dealing with the cancer stuff. Whence will the drama come? Elena? Noel?

Felicity 3.06 BenEmma: I worry that Ben and Felicity despite reconciling aren’t going to be able shake this bump in the road, especially with Ben getting jumped like that and he’s going to have a big dent in his pride as a result. I dunno, I hope they can but I keep thinking that they’re going to reintroduce Noel as a possible love interest soon and ugh I’m not looking forward to that. I liked Noel and Felicity together, but the way things are now with Noel and Ben living together and as friends, I don’t want to see the implosion of this set up.

Yeah I think Tyra will be back as it did seem like this was setting up for something more. Don’t be a stalker Noel. I just checked to see when ANTM started (2003) so this must have been when Tyra was trying her hand at the acting thing.

Drama wise there’s no way the Elena cheating thing isn’t going to come up soon and now she has kissed Finn I think she’s only going to get more tempted, plus he lives across the hall so she won’t be able to avoid him. I predict an awkward elevator ride that ends in a smooch.

Any other thoughts?

Felicity 3.05 Ben and FelicityJulie: I just can’t believe how young Tyra looked in 2000.  I guess that was fourteen years ago, so, yeah. We probably all looked young.

You know Felicity and Noel is on the return, but I’m not sure how they’re going to get there at this point. Right now both characters seem so far from being romantically interested in each other. It would be kind of out of left field. But that’s TV for you.

Emma: I am super intrigued as to how we will get back to that place of Felicity and Noel. I predict booze or beets will be involved.

Julie: Maybe some of Meghan’s smart powder 🙂

Julie Hammerle is, according to Klout, an expert in the areas of both Morgan Freeman and glasses. Her writing can be found at and you can holler at her on Twitter as well.

The Wish List: Gina’s Lightning Bolt Shirt and Plaid Jacket on Brooklyn Nine-Nine

22 Oct

Last year Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Gina became an instant TV Ate My Wardrobe favorite thanks to her collection of patterned sweaters, love for wolfies and penchant for interpretive dance. And of course the all-round Chelsea Peretti related goodness. The clothing coveting continues this season and this Wish List is dedicated to Gina’s attire in the recent “Halloween II” episode. No, Gina doesn’t wear a spooky costume and instead she works the whole pattern clashing thing with aplomb.

Gina B99Pairing a Collection B plaid baseball jacket with faux leather sleeves (also available in black and white plaid) with the contrasting lightning bolt shirt from Topshop (it also comes in coral) is one way to mix it up as we head into the chillier season, but it isn’t quite ready to dig out all the knitwear.

Lightning shirtHere are a couple of alternate jacket suggestions:

TartanFirst up more faux leather sleeves and a biker jacket rather than baseball style from Chicwash.

tartan and leatherReal leather-trim with multiple zips and tartan patterned Karl Lagerfeld biker jacket for another take on this trend.

Not forgetting the excellent sweater game Gina brings on Brooklyn Nine-Nine and “Halloween II” was no different:

Brooklyn 99 Gina sweaterPolka dots and sleeved florals – the sleeve/body contrast is a big thing this year – and if you like the look of this ‘Sloane’ sweater but want it in a non-clashing way, Equipment has a couple of other items which have caught our attention using these patterns separately.

The ‘Aubrey‘ polka dot silk dress looks beyond slouchy comfy and I love a 3/4 length sleeve:

EquipmentAnd here is the ‘Lynne‘ floral collarless shirt:

Equipment floral blouseFor recent Wish List posts check out Robyn’s sweaters on The Good Wife and more pattern clashing from The Mindy Project

What’s in a Dress on The Affair?

21 Oct

The Affair has many secrets it is yet to divulge including the identity of the person who has been killed and why the police want to talk to Noah and Alison about their relationship in so much depth. It is a show that begs to be watched more than once from the way scenarios change and the dialogue differs in both perspectives. It is a spot the difference if you will and this goes beyond the words that are said with hairstyles and clothing differing in each version of events. I’m going to focus in on the latter and the dress Helen wore to the fancy soiree at her father’s house in the second episode.

At this point we don’t know if Alison or Noah is reliable in their recollections as there are enough discrepancies to suggest both have inaccurate memories. Or they are both lying. Or one of them has a better memory. The other thing to remember is this is also a matter of perspective so Alison comes across as sexier in Noah’s version, whereas in her own retelling of the story her dress and mannerisms are far more tempered around him. By looking at how they view the secondary characters we can also learn more about Noah and Alison, which is where Helen and her dress come in.

The Affair 1.02 which dressHelen asks her husband’s opinion regarding which dress she should wear with Noah picking the one that looks slinkier and with a whole lot of plunge and cut outs. Helen instead picks the more covered up simple dress and this is the one we see her wearing at the party. Helen looks pretty, but there is nothing about this outfit that suggests she is a woman who comes from money. Noah’s side of the story reveals Helen to be a good mom who isn’t really anything like her parents (who he clearly despises) and while they’re still sexually active they constantly get interrupted by the kids. There is no time for just them and any excitement Noah once had about this relationship is now gone; he even turns down her shower suggesting as he’s too busy masturbating to thoughts of Alison. Which, urgh Noah you’re wife seems pretty great to be honest and you’re just feeling restless about the life you are living. This projection of his wife could also be coming from a place of guilt and so the version of Helen we are seeing is everything good.

The Affair 1.02 Noah and HelenAt the party the woman Helen’s father had an affair with is there and Noah listens while Helen has a mini meltdown about this intrusion. Later in a move that maybe makes Noah feel emasculated (so much eye rolls towards Noah’s discomfort in this scene); Helen tries to big up his second book while also complimenting his less commercial first novel. Alison delivers a whisky to Noah in this scene and there is no interaction between Helen and Alison, not even an acknowledgement they have met before. This could be Noah separating the two women in his life as best he can.

The Affair 1.02 dress fixingWhen we see this scene take place from Alison’s side there is not only interaction, but the same level of intrusive comments from the rich to the wait staff as if they think they have the right to make overly long remarks about personal tragedy (Helen’s mother to Alison) and to fix Alison’s dress in front of everyone with an unsubtle reference to the tightness. It is both patronizing and humiliating with a strong whiff of belittling. Helen is cut from the same summer folk cloth as her mother to Alison; the precise demands she makes about the glass of water (no ice) and a very thin sliver of cake sounds so utterly specific and ridiculous. Helen is stood on the opposite side of the table to her husband, rather than by his side and everything in part two suggests there is no closeness between husband and wife.

The Affair 1.02 Alison's versionThis is clear in the interaction Alison witnesses above and it is a hostile looking conversation between Helen and Noah. Helen’s dress is far more opulent here and she looks like a woman of money in her stance and styling. There is nothing approachable about Helen in this scenario and something as simple as an updo can make a character look frosty in comparison to the no fuss hair down approach of Helen in the first part. Alison’s hair also changes between the two; Noah remembers it being down and flirty (maybe Noah thinks of women with their hair down) whereas it is tied back when Alison recalls this evening.

It’s funny that I was leaning towards Alison being the more reliable unreliable narrator up to the point where she paints Helen as just another rich lady bitch and my sympathy at this point is very much with Helen. Maybe this is because I really like Maura Tierney, but also because up to this interpretation of her she seems pretty great. Of course this could be Noah romanticizing the woman he is stepping out on and the mother of his children and in the same respect Alison might be painting her in a more negative light to ease her guilt.

For another spouse comparison here is how Noah sees Cole as the cowboy and super macho dude:

The Affair 1.02 Cowboy ColeLater Noah comments that “married people don’t fuck like that” adding further credence to this idea that Noah’s perspective of Cole is all about masculinity and excitement.

The Affair 1.02 ColeTo Alison, Cole on the same day looks like the surfer dude from the first episode in a Henley and sans cowboy hat. The change of top could simply be that Cole was all sweaty from working and horse riding and yet it is notable because they look like two very different kinds of people in these shots.

The narrative set up on The Affair is disorientating because it isn’t clear at this point exactly what is going on or what is motivating Noah and Alison in the present day scenes. Costume projects an image telling us more about the character in question and because clothing is being used to show differing perspectives on this show it adds another level of intrigue; sometimes the changes are subtle with how well something fits and at other points such as Helen’s party dress the discrepancies are far bigger. Maybe Helen wore neither of those dresses to the party and we might end up seeing a third version of this pivotal event showing what really occurred.


Julie Hammerle

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