Pop Culture Mondays/7.5.22

The “WE NEED A BREAK” Edition

Welcome to my brain…

Hello, my darling pop culture junkies, and welcome to my brain. I am not really sure how to proceed as we are ONCE again in the wake of a mass shooting and the horrific loss of innocent lives. This time, YET ANOTHER community is shattered because of one person (a young white man) who got a hold of a high-powered rifle and proceeded to open fire during a local 4th of July parade. His father also happens to be 2nd Amendment freak.


I am in the UK, and at least ONCE a day — though usually more — after hearing my accent, someone will say something to me about what a shitshow America is. While most will point out that their own country is not doing great, they almost always say — “…but at least we don’t have guns.”

And I cannot respond to that in any way other than acknowledgment.

But we need a break — in every way. We need to CATCH a break. We need a mental break. We need a social media break, perhaps. Kara Swisher said it perfectly on her very last Sway podcast where she was being interviewed (HERE) — when asked what she would change if she had the power to go back in time and she said,

“I would shut down the Internet. I would go back in time and re-think the Internet and regulate it better and not give it so much free rein….”

I don’t think she is wrong.

But let’s get to pop culture. A quick one this week…

…and last week, the incredible and very sexy (sorry, but he IS) George Hahn was my guest on the pod. We talked about the January 6th Hearings and what bombshells were unfolding as we spoke…and so much more, so PLEASE check it out:

There is a lot for Lady Liberty to be sad about. Before the shooting yesterday, some high-profile women took to their socials to make their statements on what INDEPENDENCE DAY really meant to them:

And Katy Perry takes the “10” trend to make a point:

Many women wore black on Monday…



IN case you missed it, “Minions: The Rise of Gru” hit movie theatres this weekend and broke records by bringing in over $125 million AND counting. A massive success due to the franchise's popularity and a universal appeal for these ADORABLE little creatures. But usually, you don't think of a kid's movie as being hit amongst, say the TEEN or College crowd.

BUT…enter TikTok.

And if you have a child this age and they tell you they are going to see this movie, but they are all dressed up..here is why and here is why some theatre owners are turning them away now…

OH TIKTOK. You really did it this time!

There is a trend going around which started as a bunch of guys wearing suits to see the movie and became the “GENTLEMINION” trend and I am not joking I have seen groups of teens dressed in suits and sunglasses walking out of theatres a couple of times here in London…

Don’t count the ladies out for once second…they got in on it too:

But maybe THIS TikTok will explain why theatre owners and others trying to take their little kids to a movie day are NOT AMUSED…

On top of the trend of suiting up comes the screaming and shouting throughout the movie, forcing others to walk out. SO, some theatres have begun turning away customers in suits!

Here is the best summary of the whole thing:

This has become a global trend, and I am sure the movie studio had nothing to do with it, but I am guessing despite the controversy, they are pretty freaking happy about it!

And in related news…we love Steve Carell, who was on a massive press tour FOR “Minions,” and he did one of my fave series, “Snack Wars,” and I love him:


And here are a few other things that surfaced this week…

  • F1. It’s a global sensation. For those of you either not familiar with Formula 1 or have been too embarrassed to admit you don’t know it…here is a brief from Wikipedia:

Formula One (also known as Formula 1 or F1) is the highest class of international racing for open-wheel single-seater formula racing cars sanctioned by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA). The World Drivers’ Championship, which became the FIA Formula One World Championship in 1981, has been one of the premier forms of racing around the world since its inaugural season in 1950. The word formula in the name refers to the set of rules to which all participants’ cars must conform.[1] A Formula One season consists of a series of races, known as Grands Prix, which take place worldwide on both purpose-built circuits and closed public roads.

And it is increasingly important in the US with events in places like Austin and, soon enough, the Vegas Strip. And no one at the moment is more famous than driver Lewis Hamilton.

Recently, some comments from a racing rival’s father were unearthed from an interview months ago. The Portuguese father used a racist term when referring to Hamilton, and the world, rightfully, erupted. And Hamilton himself responded:

But he also had a sense of humor about it:

One of my fave TikToks came out from the star-studded F1 event this weekend in the UK. This was made of Gordon Ramsay’s daughter, who it would SEEM might love Lewis Hamilton a LOT. 😍

And while I seem to be in many of the same places recently as Tom Cruise — like even just this weekend…he sadly is not my boyfriend or friend or even enemy or even aware of my existence, I still want to say HAPPY 60th BDAY TOM! He was out and about at the race along with other famous faces:

  • Pride London looked amazing. If you remember, a few editions back, I recommended a show called “Heartstopper,” which showcases two high school boys coming to terms with their sexuality and love. In case you forgot:

And the cast BROUGHT it to the Pride parade this weekend. The cast was there, and the main stars held hands throughout:

And then, when some of the cast were confronted with old homophobic protesters…they delivered beautifully:

I love them.

  • Kim K again delivers. She threw her daughter North a 9th birthday party and wanted the WILDERNESS theme. So first, there is the required trip to the wilderness, right? DO NOT WORRY; Kim sorted it:

Not sure about the interior LEWK, but hey, it’s KIM AIR, baby:

But really, the pic that has taken over socials was the setup for the kids camping. Tents in lux house, it seems…but they used red paint to make it seem like blood from their deer hunts, and I feel that is pretty aggressive:

I mean…I remember my 9th birthday party pretty vividly. We had a big tent set up in my backyard where like 20 of us slept in sleeping bags that were slightly damp and smelled of mildew. We played in the sprinkler and the slip ‘n slide, and we ate chips from the bags and maybe pizza or hot dogs. So, the same. Ha.

  • Another big weekend in maybe the best city in the world at the moment…LONDON. While I was not at either event, Adele played Hyde Park this weekend…as did the Rolling Stones. But for Adele, there was a lot of TikTok action, but here were some of my faves:
  • One of the magical things about TikTok is the DUET capability. But before we go there, let me set this up. A week or so ago, this gentleman, a vocal coach, popped up on my FYP (For you page) inviting singers to sing along with his piano playing but giving some tips and guidance on what to do and when. Here is his invitation to a Billie Eilish song:

And then Billie DUETS him with her singing her song but with his guidance, and it is just so lovely:

His response was so adorable:

  • And I read the MOST incredible book this week and while I know the woman who wrote it like she is an actual friend — I know without a doubt I would feel the same if I didn't know her. You won’t be able to put it down…BUY THIS BOOK!
  • AND THE ROMCOM IS BACK YOU GUYS. And who better for a RomCom than our beloved Julia Roberts…and George Clooney. I cannot wait:
  • And then lastly, we shall end on some Royal Family since I AM in the UK. This video went viral this week, although it was apparently filmed months ago. It is the most humanizing thing I have seen of Prince William and Kate, presumably the female voice in the background. They are outraged by an apparent paparazzi following them on a bike ride. From what William experienced with his mom’s death at the hands of the paparazzi, it is NO wonder why he is outraged. It breaks my heart to think people have to live like this NOT by choice:

THAT IS IT, my darlings…

I am off to wander around London where men wear real clothes like actual shirts with buttons which is something unfamiliar to me now that I live in the land of ATH-LEISURE aka LA. HOUSEKEEPING NOTE: I am taking next week OFF from the newsletter and Pod. I will be in Poland and Greece to see the AMAZING work the people at CHOOSE LOVE are doing on the ground with refugees. For more info on this org, please check out:

If you aren’t already a subscriber (PLEASE PLEASE SUBSCRIBE!!!) and please do SHARE this with all your friends…and IF you want this in your inbox, please send an email to:





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Brooke Hammerling

Brooke Hammerling

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