Pop Culture Mondays/10.19.20

The “Mr. Rogers” Edition

Welcome to my brain…

Happy Monday my darling pop culture junkies! What a week it was and I am still in a Sunday state of mind to be perfectly honest as last week was a doozie and that has nothing to do with my recovering from heart surgery. I have put Baby Yoda on hold this week because MR. ROGERS (Rollins College Alum — my Alma Mater) needed the top spot this week! We are in countdown mode now where every minute of every day counts until November 3rd. Hard to write a newsletter that is Trump-free at the moment so I am going for TRUMP-ADJACENT this week…but for the love of ALL that is good and holy I cannot wait for the days that douchebag is someone we DON’T EVEN have to think about for one minute of one day. BUT I digress.

I cannot drink until December 30th due to the meds I am on for this new ticker so I am finding other outlets to take my fear/nervousness/anger/disgust out and those outlets seem to include a lot of yelling at the TV and throwing my phone at the TV when that crazy lady told Trump how handsome he was when he smiled (I also changed the channel at that moment but more on that later…), watching a LOT of TikToks and thinking about my next tattoo. So forgive me that this is definitely a TAD more political than I like to be but we are in the FINAL STRETCH YOU GUYS!!!

So sit back…grab some Halloween candy that you got under the premise there will actually be trick or treaters this year -there won’t be — eat those mini Twix and skip the Milky Ways because they are trash and grab those Haribo Gummy bears (did you know the GREEN ONES ARE STRAWBERRY??) and enjoy a little TRUMP ADJACENT PCM this week….

NETWORK WARS

UNEXPECTED:

What was more unexpected? That Biden had better ratings than the other dude or that we all spent so much time talking about NETWORK TV? I would think this is a tie tbh. SO for those of you who missed this completely or live outside of the US (CONGRATS btw), it was announced last week that since the debate was cancelled as Trump was refusing to do a virtual debate, that Biden was going to do a Town Hall on ABC. Now look, I am no political strategist but that to ME seemed like a bad idea for a few reasons like asking the other networks to rise to the challenge, but also ABC has no cable properties so you only get one channel for this Town Hall. So, then it was announced that Trump got NBC to do THEIR OWN TOWN HALL at the same time as the Biden Town Hall which got everyone all fired up. NBC also has a bunch more properties to showcase this on like MSNBC and CNBC. But man, it set people off. The thinking was that Trump would obviously win the ratings and then use that as a talking point in his propaganda and people felt NBC was playing a dangerous game by having him on at the exact same time as ABC’s town hall. But then alas…everyone seemed ok with it because Trump actually lost in the ratings and everything was ok then. SO it seemed that maybe the people up in arms about NBC were not so up in arms about the moral dilemma but they were afraid of what the results were going to be and then when it turned out in their favor, all was OK again? WOO BOY I literally cannot wait until this whole clown show is over because it is making us ALL crazy.

BUT let’s put the network wars aside for a minute…because there were some beautiful pop cultural moments that came from these events which I have tried to break down to some extent. Here we go:

MR. ROGERS —

So, some Trump advisor in commenting on Biden’s performance, decided that calling Biden Mr. Rogers, was somehow an insult and would be a blistering review of the candidate. Comparing someone to one of the country’s most beloved figures in modern history who brought joy to millions, who helped children of many generations and who helped bring a spotlight to the injustices of racism and helped bring normalcy to children with disabilities and helped children who were sick….would be an honor to almost EVERYONE…except a Trump advisor as this clearly is in line with the campaign’s agenda to make everyone who is “liberal” a pedophile, including Mr. Rogers. WELL, that my friends, is why Mr. Rogers was trending and I can think of no one more antithetical to this current administration than the beloved Fred Rogers.

And one of the most thoughtful tweets came from Paul Stanley. YES, that Paul Stanley!

What this one moment did for civil rights in America was more than anything this administration has done x 100000000.

So, while I have no doubt Mr. Rogers would probably be horrified he has been politicized, I for ONE would vote him in as President time and time again.

SAVANNAH GUTHRIE —

As pissed off as everyone was about NBC airing the Trump interview at the same time as ABC/Biden…NO one can dispute the utter badassness that Savannah unleashed. After having some pretty abysmal debate moderators this year, all eyes were on how the two seasoned journalists would handle these conversations. BUT let’s be clear, more were interested in how Savannah would handle Trump because…well OBVIOUSLY. AND she killed it. So much so that I wonder if NBC had some sort of agreement with the Trump campaign that if they allowed the interview that he could not disparage her after because it is shocking he has not unleashed on her. As I said, we are TRUMP-ADJACENT so rather than show the actual interview (go watch it if you have not), here is the take from SNL. Also, a shout out to the crazy nodding lady behind Trump who was so clearly a plant by the campaign it was so gross and uncomfortable but SNL nails it. Pro-tip, skip thru the Biden stuff just because Jim Carrey is terrible tbh…like terrible. But the other stuff is perfection:

Savannah calls Trump “a crazy Uncle” which is award winning journalism right there. There has also been a lot of speculation to why she wore a pink suit which the days before had been a rallying cry on Insta by celebrity women led by Kerry Washington with the #ambitionsuitsyou campaign.

So even though it is reported there is NO significance to her wearing the pink suit that night, the timing to me indicates that THAT’S TOTAL BS. 🤷‍♀️

And SNL WEEKEND UPDATE —

Well they said it better than I can when it comes to the President saying he would have to leave the country (BYE, Boo) among other things…it was great:

BYE

IT’S ABOUT THE BIBLE, BROOKE:

This was a quote from someone years and years ago when I was being told the pitch about a new show from Mark Burnett. I don’t know why, but it has always stuck with me as one of the funniest conversations I have ever had. Look I have nothing against religion and here are the facts on THAT:

  • I am 88 percent Ashkenazi Jew (*23&Me sourced)
  • I was born a Quaker
  • I was baptized a Presbyterian
  • I went to an all Girls Catholic School where I got special permission as a non-catholic to participate in CCD and First Communion FROM the Vatican
  • I was confirmed an Episcopal
  • I was an acolyte
  • I sang (terribly)in the choir
  • My mother was an ordained Presbyterian minister

SO I know a LOT about the Bible. I also know that Mark Burnett is a deeply flawed human being using religion and FAITH as weapons of manipulation…but I digress. I know many of you are “Survivor” junkies. I know Survivor is an addiction to many and a comfort to many during Covid. Fine,

But how many of you are obsessed with “The Contender”? Or “A.D. The Bible Continues” (a real thing…) OR “The Messiah”, a virtually unwatchable show that aired earlier this year? That’s right…not a lot of you.

The current administration had their own in-house reality show super producer in Mark Burnett…who is like the Michael Bay of Jesus content (his wife WAS “Touched by an Angel” so never forget..). But as it goes for most trends…they die. People evolve. We look back at things and say HOLY FUCK what were we thinking?? (“Friends” for example is in that camp.) And that’s how things are shaping up for poor Mark Burnett who used to be considered the master of unmissable content. Well, that star has fallen and I am sure there is more coming out on this but last night this is what everyone was taking about:

So pop culture…you can be SO fickle….I think Mark and Touched by an Angel should conjure up life in retirement tbh. Though I feel this sums it all up:

Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.

BETTER CALL SAUL:

Whether you think of him is Inigo Montoya from “Princess Bride” or as Saul Berenson from “Homeland” or if you’re a “Yentl” junkie which is another newsletter tbh, you have SOME reaction to the amazing Mandy Patinkin. But he may become more known for being the husband of Kathryn Grody, AMERICAN LEGEND AND ICON.

In case you have missed it, the dynamic duo have taken to the socials fully embracing their lack of understanding the TikTok world by becoming TikTok stars. But all with the intent of getting people to GO VOTE (Well Vote Biden).

Seemingly directed by their son…I love them SO SO MUCH:

Yep…

HOW IT STARTED, HOW IT’S GOING:

As I said, I definitely have lost myself in TikTok and ALL the socials this week which is maybe why this PCM is a bit thin…sorry sorry but look it cannot be gold every week! But this trend which started a couple weeks ago has really hit its stride this week. Simply, it has people showing a pic of something stating this is how it started…and an updated pic of how it’s going like well here we are. So rather than TELL you I shall show you some of my faves as some are funny, some are inspirational, some are heartbreaking:

I can relate:

AND THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE THINGS….

Look, this week was HARD. Everything is really about the next 2.5 weeks and we are all on edge and since I am still in recovery I have the brain capacity of an ant tbh. And the attention span of a goldfish FOR SURE, I am just really proud to get this thing published today. So here are just a few snippets of some other things happening…

  • Jeffrey Toobin is not having a good week and for the life of me I cannot figure out what the real story is though I think I can piece it together and let’s say NONE OF IT IS GOOD. #gross
  • OK, so Brit Brit is NOT ok you guys.
  • Governor Cuomo tells Trevor Noah no one wants to have dinner with him and THAT SIR IS ERRONEOUS. I will move back to NYC for dinner with you Gov!
  • Did you know Tab was a diet drink? ALSO, I miss my childhood.
  • Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, Jason…..they have NOTHING on this guy.
  • And speaking of…COCAINE is a hell of a drug…

And if you DO NOT get my cocaine reference…WATCH THIS WHOLE THING:

OK SO….until next week my pop culture junkies. I gots to go take my pain killers and take a nap and hope we have more content for next week. I know there is a lot of content on the TV I didn’t get into this week but I will next week I promise…or I will try to at least.

GO VOTE. VOTE VOTE VOTE.

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A weekly round up of all the news you’re too embarrassed to admit you don’t know. Or too embarrassed to admit you DO.

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Brooke Hammerling

Brooke Hammerling

Talk to me about tech, pop culture, cheese or dogs.

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