G’day, mates! This week, Culture War is taking a trip across the pond to Great Britain, where things are really shaking on the pop culture front. First off, throw up your devil horns and visit the registrar’s office, ’cause a college in England is offering the world’s first degree in heavy metal. Hopefully this will give metalheads the confidence to drone on endlessly about their favorite bands in a pseudo-intellectual fashion. Metal not your thing? Perhaps you’re more interested in pregnant women you’ve never met? Well, lucky you, because we finally have Kate Middleton’s due date! Get ready to mark it on your calendars, spray paint it on your loved ones, carve it into your foreheads. Now, let’s pit these two stories against each other in a good-natured death match that will leave the Union Flag spattered in the loser’s blood.
Quick: name a star who’s bigger than Tom Cruise, Scarlett Johansson and Beyoncé combined. Having trouble? You shouldn’t. The answer is obvious: mama! Sunday is Mother’s Day, and in honour of the occasion, I’m devoting part of this week’s column to Mother’s Day gift ideas. The other part belongs to Rucker—Darius Rucker, that is! Rock’s original bad boy (and former Hootie and the Blowfish mastermind) is about to squeeze a steaming hot new album out into the universe. I haven’t heard it yet, but I fully expect it to be the soundtrack to summer 2013. Anyhow, let’s compare these two exciting topics and see which one wins this week’s Culture War.
Hey, everybody! I just flew in from last week and, boy, are my arms terrified. Last week was a real doozy, with enough earthquakes, homicidal Elvis impersonators, explosions, and Tom Cruise movie premieres to scare the pants off even the most rational-minded pants owner. The only thing that didn’t happen was the invasion of earth by a super-intelligent race of aliens with multiple fire-breathing anuses. And thank God for that!
What a silly week it’s been. North Korea wants a nuclear war, bird flu is on the rise, and French “scientists” are telling young women to throw their bras in the garbage. No wonder Margaret Thatcher decided to pass away! But the two most alarming stories of the week came from the world of popular culture. First, the Kool-Aid Man has been given a CGI makeover and a new personality, and I feel like I’ve lost an old friend. And secondly, country singer Kid Rock raised eyebrows when he announced he was embarrassed to be a Republican. Your funeral, GOP! Let’s analyze these two stories and see which one wins this week’s Culture War!
Greetings! I write to you from a hotel in Los Angeles, the centre of the artistic universe, the birthplace of the great Shia LaBeouf, the home of the Brooklyn Dodgers. A lot of amazing stuff has happened over the past week, but one of the biggest stories was the 19th anniversary of Krist Novoselic’s retirement from music, or, if you like, Kurt Cobain’s death. The other biggie came from the fashion world, with the debut of drone-proof hoodies. Do they work? Well, I’m wearing one as I write this, and haven’t been bombed once. Let’s compare these two hot pieces of news and see which one wins this week’s Culture War!
Last Friday marked the 19th anniversary of the time Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain mistook a shotgun for a can of whipped cream he’d hoped to squirt into his mouth. The grungescape has never been the same. Fans around the world celebrated the somber occasion online by creating the hashtag #shirtsforkurt, wearing Nirvana shirts and posting selfies on Twitter and Instagram. Which, if you’ll remember, is what he requested in his suicide note.
Hi, everybody! I’ve been taking the world’s cultural temperature all week, and boy is my thermometer dirty. Lots of fun stuff’s been happening, but two stories stand head and shoulders above the pack. First up: Jesus Christ. He rose from the dead over the weekend, which, even in our fast-paced Digital Age, is pretty impressive. And, on the secular front, 59-year-old Hollywood heartthrob John Malkovich released his own line of gentlemen’s beachwear. So, lock up your beaches! Now, let’s get down to it and find out which of these stories comes out on top in this week’s Culture War.
Like most people of my generation, I love to laugh my head off at funny comedians. That’s why it pains me to see this week’s Culture War contenders—Jay Leno and Kelsey Grammer—in such distress. As you know, poor Jay is once again fighting to keep his job as host of The Tonight Show. He’s reportedly so stressed that he yelled at his antique car collection. Things are even worse for Kelsey Grammer, who’s feuding with one of his many ex-wives over who gets to keep their bed. How are these two men supposed to make us laugh when they’re so busy crying?
Spring is almost here and I can’t wait. Soon we’ll have baby birds chirping and bunnies hopping and we’ll all go through puberty. What better time to put two of the week’s most exciting cultural news stories up against each other to see which one survives in a Culture War death match?
First up—hallelujah!—Danny DeVito and Rhea Perlman are back! Yes, after a five-month separation, Hollywood’s #1 teensy supercouple has worked things out. Why, I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re making strenuous love in their child-sized bed as you read this. Equally exciting is the news that fabric-loving artist Christo has unveiled his latest work, a 295-foot-tall sculpture called the Big Air Package. To put this in context, it’s as big as 4,000 Danny DeVitos stacked on top of each other. Now that’s art.
Have you ever noticed how different Canada is from America? They have a “president,” while we have “Galen Weston, Jr.” They say “ruff,” while we say “roofarini.” But perhaps the biggest difference between our two proud nations is that we had Stompin’ Tom, while America had to settle for R. Kelly. Coincidentally, both of these R&B giants figured in last week’s hottest news stories.
First up, Stompin’ Tom made a widely unpopular career move in passing away at the age of 77. (Typical Canadian troublemaker!) And on the R. Kelly front, a group of concerned American citizens is petitioning the White House to officially replace “The Star Spangled Banner” with his 2003 hit “Ignition (Remix).” It’s hardly been up a week and it already has way more signatures than my petition to replace “O Canada” with Lil’ Kim’s “How Many Licks.”
This week, I’ve got music on the mind, baby! Do you like to rock? Me too! Sometimes I rock eight, nine, ten hours a day, if I have the energy. Don’t believe me? That’s OK. I still think you’re groovy, baby!
Pardon. My free-spirited alter ego, Fingers, seems to have hijacked the beginning of this week’s column. Anyhow, like he said, this week’s two big stories come from the glamorous world of music. First, Morrissey’s duck-based feud with Jimmy Kimmel shows no sign of waning. The Mozzer is reportedly so upset with Kimmel that he hasn’t styled his quiff in over a week. And secondly, the American unemployment rate is higher—and cooler—than ever now that Scott Weiland has been fired from his position with Stone Temple Pilots. Being a musical legend has never been more exciting.
Namaste, everybody! Last week was so crammed full of culture that looking at it hurt your damn eyes. But amidst all the excitement over the Oscars and Michael Haneke’s nip slip, you probably missed the week’s tastiest cultural nuggets. For instance, did you know that Michael Jackson’s son*, Prince Michael, made his debut as an Entertainment Tonight correspondent? Well, he did, so if you thought it was impossible to make Entertainment Tonight better, you were wrong. Another thing that happened? Michael Bay forgave Megan Fox for calling him Hitler and they plan to celebrate by making a Ninja Turtles movie together. Thank Christ!
I’d like to begin this week’s column with a shout-out to everyone who survived last week. If you weren’t crushed by a flaming meteor, murdered by Christopher Dornel or Oscar Pistorius, or driven to suicide by the hilarious tidal wave of Harlem Shake memes, you’re doing pretty well indeed. Compared to these nightmares, this week’s Culture War contenders are a breath of fresh air. First up is Pope Benedict XVI’s final Ash Wednesday mass. Did it live up to all the hype? Speaking of hype, did you hear the song that Canadian astronaut/moustache enthusiast Chris Hadfield recorded with the Barenaked Ladies? I did, and I’m going to tell you all about it. And then I’ll tell you which of these two stories is better. Because.
Hello, beautiful! Is your mother home? And does she have a sister? In other words, I’d like to spend some time alone with your aunt. OK! If I seem more amorous than usual, it’s because that little devil Cupid has mutilated my heart with a volley of razor-tipped arrows, like some love-obsessed baby warlord. Which brings us to one of this week’s biggest stories: St. Valentine’s Day, a.k.a. Sex Christmas. Are you ready to get your smooch on?
The week’s other big story is… snow. You know, that flakey ice water that falls from the sky when it gets cold out? Snow was one of last week’s biggest social media stars, and, frankly, it’s about time.
Hey, everybody! It’s time for Culture War, the popular weekly column where we take two of the hottest stories from the entertainment world, turn them against each other in a bloody, UFC-esque battle and see which one lives. This week, amateur boxer/singer Chris Brown found himself back in the headlines, accused of punching R&B star Frank Ocean in a parking lot. (In the words of Stephanie Tanner, “How rude!”) Elsewhere, famous diminutive sex actor Ron Jeremy gave the world a scare when he suffered a heart aneurysm. Luckily, he’s OK, and doctors say he’ll be having intercourse on camera again in no time (unless Chris Brown beats him up, too, heaven forbid). Let the games begin!
This week has been very impressive. We learned that lip-syncing exists, Burt Reynolds is susceptible to the flu, and Oprah is addicted to foreskin. But the two biggest stories were the announcement that J.J. Abrams is directing the next Star Wars movie and… my wild Saturday night, which I spent alone in my apartment. (You probably didn’t hear much about that second story, but sit tight and all will be revealed.) As usual, using my patented method, I will determine which of these two news items is more important for civilization.
If you’re like me, the events of the past week have left you unable to eat, sleep and, especially, bathe. Not only did Lance Armstrong tell Oprah he loved to eat drugs while cycling around France, but slutty rocker John Mayer returned to live performance after a glorious two-year absence. How could these men behave so selfishly? We deserve better from our celebrities, and I hope both of these rascals get some serious jail time for what they’ve done.
But this week’s Culture War is preoccupied with headier concerns… like Internet pornography and the death of actor Conrad Bain. Which of these subjects is inherently better? In the words of myself, “Let’s pit them against each other and see who wins, Michael!”
A recent article in Salon has got people wondering if the all-you-can-eat porno buffet known as “the Internet” has warped young men’s brains so badly that they can’t relate to women in real life.
When you work in Canadian television, like I do, you often hear criticism like, “Why does Canadian TV have to be so fearless, innovative and face-meltingly excellent? Would it kill you to make a little derivative garbage every now and then?” And that’s just Mother! Well, don’t fret, people of Canada: CTV heard your cries and it’s bringing long-running reality game show The Amazing Race to our proud nation.
If you’ve never seen it, The Amazing Race is a show where pairs of obnoxious people travel to exotic locations around the globe, insult foreigners, have nervous breakdowns, and compete against each other for $1 million. The Canadian version is slightly different (i.e. better), in that all the action will take place within Canada’s borders, which means the odds of seeing someone cry in New Brunswick are very high. The grand prize hasn’t been announced yet, so I assume it’s considerably more than $1 million. Should you apply to be a contestant or not? Let the Culture War battle begin!
Welcome to 2013, everybody! We’re only a week in and so much has already happened that it’s hard to keep up: Hugh Hefner tricked a youngster into becoming his bride; Justin Bieber smoked illegal drugs; Madonna took a tumble on a ski hill; and the boy who plays the wolf in Twilight took a drunken whiz on the carpet of an airport lounge. But the year’s biggest news so far is that Kanye West and Kim Kardashian are collaborating on a little baby.
Kanye broke the news that sexy gal pal Kim was preggers at a concert in Atlantic City when he told the audience to “stop the music and make noise for my baby mama.” The response was deafening. The audience was clearly proud of Kanye for successfully impregnating America’s favourite actress. And who can blame them?
If 2012 were a person—a man, let’s say—he’d probably be feeling pretty low right now. Everywhere he goes, people are talking openly about his imminent death, picking apart his best and worst moments and looking forward to making out with a stranger the instant he passes away.
Luckily, 2012 is not a person, so we don’t have to care about his feelings. The important question is: was 2012 a vintage year for culture and entertainment? We’re too immersed in it to have any perspective. The only way to size it up is to compare 2012 to a distant year—let’s say 1912.
As we hurtle toward 2013, things on planet Earth aren’t looking so hot. Wars ravage the Middle East and Africa, the global economy is collapsing, and Mother Nature keeps trying to kill us for no reason whatsoever. It’s enough to make you want to stick your hands down your throat and choke yourself to death with your own fingers. But don’t do that! I have good news that’ll restore your faith in everything: this year, for the first time ever, the Queen’s Christmas message will be broadcast in 3D. Why? Because! And should you require more reasons to live, you’ll be glad to know that “Gangnam Style” sensation PSY has apologized for once encouraging people to murder American soldiers.