Archive for the Popular Culture Category

me(n)tal health

Posted in Music, Popular Culture with tags , , on February 25, 2018 by phanteana

oh, the irony: back in the 80’s, Metal was deemed as a corrupting influence on young people. parents literally viewed it as the devil and claimed kids were doing drugs, having sex, or worse…committing heinous crimes and killing themselves because they believed there were hidden messages in the lyrics. fans of Metal were labeled as outcasts with few friends who did poorly in school, had trouble at home, or were just plain angry and depressed all the time.

today, there are still those parents who try to shield their kids from Metal. but its influence has taken a dramatic turn, and is now revered in some circles. one such is the mental health community, as more musicians and fans are sharing their stories of overcoming anxiety, depression, and mental illness. so the music that was once considered evil is actually a force of good in this world by helping people deal with stress and even saving lives. in other words, never judge an album by its cover.


“…cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home”

Posted in Music, Popular Culture with tags , on February 8, 2018 by phanteana

if you’re a celebrity, it’s an honor to have a day named for you. it’s an even bigger deal if you’re a celebrity that’s not only largely unknown to the mainstream, but also deceased. such an individual is Cliff Burton, whose brief-yet-illustrious career has always been overshadowed by his early passing over 30 years ago. even so, volumes have been written about his playing technique, his songwriting ability, and his devotion to his family, notably his father Ray (who is just as beloved as his famous son). Papa Ray has kept his son’s memory alive numerous times in the past, but now the late bassist’s hometown of Castro Valley, CA has declared “Cliff Burton Day” to take place on February 10 (which would be his 56th birthday had he lived). first, the Library of Congress inducts Master Of Puppets. now, this…further proof that even though he is gone, Cliff Burton is very much still with us.

the house that Helen built

Posted in Film, Popular Culture with tags , , on February 1, 2018 by phanteana

everyone loves a good “the following is based on actual events” film (ok, not everyone…but lots of folks do). we’ve seen countless historical dramas & war films, or feel-good inspirational stories of underdogs rising above adversity (ahem, Rudy…which is still a classic). each one has a unique story to share with its audience, whether they are familiar with the events depicted or not. horror is no stranger to taking its cues from real-life, even if some of the moments are embellished for Hollywood’s sake. thanks to these movies, we are now better acquainted with people like the Warrens and places like a certain town in Long Island, NY. the latest in this trope combines both historical drama and spookiness, and hails from San Jose, CA’s most notorious mansion. oh, and did i mention everyone’s favorite dame, Helen Mirren, is portraying the infamous owner of said mansion? let’s see…Helen Mirren + haunted house = ALL IN.


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body slams and books

Posted in Library Science stuff, Popular Culture with tags , , , , on December 21, 2017 by phanteana

if you’ve read enough of this blog, then you’re aware of my professional leanings: i’m a media library coordinator with an interest in coding. i even have my own portfolio (but you won’t get to see that just yet, because that would mean revealing my identity…muhahaha!). but enough about me, let’s talk about…the Milwaukee Public Library. why them? because they, like so many other libraries, have found a unique way to entice patrons into spending more time in the stacks…even if it meant rearranging the furniture and computer stations.


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fandom and chill

Posted in Film, Popular Culture with tags , , , , on December 11, 2017 by phanteana

we’ve now reached the point where year-in-review reports start to pile in. whether in the professional or personal world, everyone has a list of goals they achieved & areas they’d like to improve in. if you’re a major streaming service, then you take note of what your subscribers are watching and how often they do so. well, one Canadian subscriber seems to be quite devoted to Middle-Earth (it’s not me, because anyone who reads this knows i’m in the US…also, i don’t have an account with said streaming service). that’s dedication…and a whole lotta bathroom breaks.


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“you really need to get outside more”

remember December?

Posted in Art & Photography, Popular Culture with tags , , , on December 4, 2017 by phanteana

December just isn’t the same without a new Middle-Earth film. but at least the internet still has plenty of room for JRRT until that Amazon series/biopic gets underway.



over the river & through the woods to Saruman’s house we go

lights out for the Dark Universe

Posted in Film, Popular Culture with tags , on November 8, 2017 by phanteana

although i have a background in Film Studies, i rarely go to the movie theater these days (unless it’s a second-run screening). my reasoning is a combination of financial (let’s face it, going to the movies isn’t cheap anymore… on top of that, if you’re going to pay $20 to talk/look at your phone while the film is showing, you might as well just stay home) and personal (a story has to really speak to me in order to grab my attention).

we’re still in 2017, but i saw a total of 4 new releases in the theater between February and September. that’s a rather low number, but i’m probably not alone; the offerings we’ve been getting over the years are remakes and franchises, and the repetition has caused most people to drop the multiplex to watch films on Amazon Prime for far less than they could if they got off the sofa.

despite the downturn in movie-attendance, there was an upswing for the Horror genre. once relegated to the Halloween season (plus the “dump” months of January & August), scary movies have conjured up a lot of success this year. it was even announced some time ago that a whole cinematic universe revolving around classic movie monsters was to be launched. unfortunately, that hasn’t exactly gone as planned* (The Mummy was not among the 4 films i saw this year, mostly because i’m just not into Tom Cruise flicks…except for the glory that is Legend). but the final nail hasn’t been hammered into the coffin just yet, so perhaps the Dark Universe will rise from its premature cutting room floor grave.


*while the writers at bloody-disgusting may not have liked Dracula Untold, i thought it was a wonderful film.