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Doris Day and Rock Hudson eased America into the ’60s

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When Romance Met ComedyWhen Romance Met ComedyWith When Romance Met Comedy, Caroline Siede examines the history of the rom-com through the years, one happily ever after (or not) at a time.

In turbulent times, we often look to pop culture for comfort. So as America moved out of the idealized era of Eisenhower and sock hops and into an uncertain future of The Feminine Mystique and the pill, Doris Day and Rock Hudson pioneered a new genre of romantic comedies to ease us from one decade to the next. These colorful, feather-light films about independent career gals and the playboys who win them over were referred to as “sex comedies” at the time, but the crew behind the 2003 homage Down With Love came up with the more apt term of “bedroom comedies.”

Unlike the raunchy, nudity-filled sex comedies of the 1980s, ’60s bedroom comedies keep things coy. When the characters do eventually have sex, it’s always within the confines of marriage—even if that marriage is anything but wanted. So while in some ways Day and Hudson’s three films offered a nod to progressive sexual politics, they also reverted back to a retrograde status quo.

Before they joined forces in 1959’s Pillow Talk, Day and Hudson were both 1950s stars in their own right. She was born Doris Mary Anne Kappelhoff, a spunky bottle blonde from Cincinnati, Ohio, who got her start as a big band singer during the 1940s before transitioning into musicals and comedies that positioned her as the all-American girl next door. (She changed her last name to Day at the suggestion of jazz musician Barney Rapp.) He was born Roy Harold Scherer Jr., a tall, dark, and handsome type from Winnetka, Illinois, whose good looks helped him flourish in the star system of classic Hollywood, where he mostly starred in big-screen dramas and Westerns. (He begrudgingly changed his name to Rock Hudson at the request of talent agent Henry Willson.) Hudson had been nominated for an Academy Award for 1956’s Giant and Day had been voted the favorite star of U.S. soldiers serving in the Korean War.

Pillow Talk gave both stars a chance to reinvent their public personas. Day got to add a little sex appeal to her wholesome image, while Hudson tackled comedy for the first time in his career, emboldened by director Michael Gordon’s suggestion that he play it seriously rather than trying to be funny. Pillow Talk launched Day and Hudson into the stratosphere, particularly as a duo. They reunited for 1961’s Lover Come Back and 1964’s Send Me No Flowers, bringing along Tony Randall as the neurotic third point in their madcap romantic storylines.

The first two films hinge on very similar setups. In Pillow Talk, Day is successful New York City interior designer Jan Morrow, who starts a romance with Hudson’s earnest, innocent Texan “Rex Stetson,” not realizing he’s actually Brad Allen, the caddish composer who won’t stop wooing women over the telephone party line they share. In Lover Come Back, Day is successful New York City advertising executive Carol Templeton, who starts a romance with Hudson’s earnest, innocent chemist “Dr. Linus Tyler,” not realizing he’s actually Jerry Webster, the rival ad exec who keeps stealing her clients by unethically wining and dining them. Send Me No Flowers mixes up the formula by casting Hudson and Day as a suburban married couple. When hypochondriac George Kimball mistakenly thinks he’s dying, he starts scheming to find his wife Judy a second husband to marry after he’s gone.

All of these films fall on the frothiest, fizziest end of the rom-com spectrum. Far more attention is paid to the glorious production and costume design than to the interior lives of the characters. Each scene is packed with as many one-liners and physical gags as possible, like Hudson hilariously trying to squeeze his 6’4″ frame into a tiny sports car or Randall getting repeatedly hit in the face with colorful chemical explosions. They’re basically extended sitcom episodes or musical comedies without the big production numbers. They were not to be taken seriously or literally, which is big part of their appeal.

The fun of these films—and of other ’60s bedroom comedies like Sex And The Single Girl, Boys’ Night Out, Sunday In New York, and the teen-centric Beach Party franchise—is watching them tiptoe up to an overtly sexual line yet never quite cross it. While the screwball comedies of the 1930s and ’40s subbed in physical comedy for sexual intimacy, 1960s bedroom comedies lean into full-on innuendo. Pillow Talk is full of split-screen telephone conversations that position Day and Hudson in intimate scenarios, like lying in bed together or going toe-to-toe in a bathtub. The whole thing is a cheekily meta wink toward viewers who know that the film knows that they know what it’s doing.

Illustration for article titled America eased into the ’60s with the bedroom comedies of Doris Day and Rock Hudson

Screenshot: Pillow Talk

In that way, these bedroom comedies were a progressive nod to the changing sexual mores of the late 1950s and early 1960s. As A.O. Scott notes in a New York Times retrospective, “Day is the key to it all, because her presence simultaneously upholds the pretense of virtuous normality and utterly transgresses it.” These movies knew the sexual revolution was coming, even if the bounds of good taste (and the restrictions of the Hays Code) meant they couldn’t quite go all-in on it yet.

Still, the veneer of propriety is so thin it’s basically nonexistent. There’s something slightly insidious lurking beneath the fizzy fun—and I’m not just talking about obviously out-of-date jokes, like a sexual assault attempt played off as a “boys will be boys” gag in Pillow Talk. For as much as the Day/Hudson bedroom comedies upend sexual norms, they exist far more to uphold the patriarchy than to winkingly challenge it. Though Pillow Talk and Lover Come Back initially seem to celebrate Day’s independent career-minded archetype, the battle-of-the-sexes plotting isn’t balanced. The jokes mostly stem from watching Day’s self-sufficient characters get taken down a peg by manipulative cads who end the film by forcefully shoving her into the domestic sphere. His repentance and her revenge are afterthoughts.

In Pillow Talk’s climax, Brad physically rips Jan out of her bed and carries her to his apartment, where her righteous anger immediately melts away the second Brad mentions he wants to marry her. Lover Come Back’s ending is even more egregiously bleak. Carol is devastated to learn that she and Jerry got married and slept together while drunk on a new intoxicating candy. She immediately gets the marriage annulled, and their “happy ending” comes nine months later, when he discovers she’s having his baby and they rush to get remarried on the way to the delivery room. By Send Me No Flowers, the independent-career-woman angle is dropped altogether. Day is now a ditzy housewife who laughs off the idea that she should learn about household finances or even that she should know the price of a pound of ham. (Never mind that she’s the one doing the shopping.)

Both within the narrative of each individual film and within the arc of all three as a pseudo-trilogy, the message is clear: A career might be a fun experience for a young woman to indulge in, but it’s really just a stopgap on her way to her real purpose as wife and mother. And if she had to be duped to find love, well, she kind of had it coming, right?

That kind of retrograde plotting might not be so surprising if it didn’t stand in such sharp contrast to the classic screwball comedies that were released a decade or two prior. 1938’s Bringing Up Baby also turns a comedic eye on gender and romance, yet in that film, it’s Katharine Hepburn who’s the comedic tour de force that brings a spark to Cary Grant’s frigid world. Though screwball comedies aren’t exactly progressive manifestos on gender, watching a woman comedically manipulate a man is inherently subversive in a way the reverse isn’t. Bedroom comedies kept the mile-a-minute comedic pacing, but dropped the rebellious edge.

It can actually be kind of difficult to see just how sexist the Day/Hudson films are because they have an air of satire that feels like it should extend to their take on gender roles too. Lover Come Back sharply skewers the advertising industry by having Jerry and Carol battle to sell “Vip,” a product that literally doesn’t exist. In Pillow Talk, Randall’s character hilariously bemoans how difficult it is to be born a millionaire because you don’t get to brag about being a self-made man. (“I started out in college with eight million dollars, and I’ve still got eight million dollars. I just can’t seem to get ahead.”) Pillow Talk also offers a whole lot to unpack in a sequence where Brad’s seduction scheme involves convincing Jan that her mild-mannered boyfriend (a.k.a. his own alter ego) is secretly gay.

Yet other than sexual innuendos and the appreciably progressive touch of casting Day as a romantic ingénue in her late 30s, there’s nothing forward thinking about these films’ central battle-of-the-sexes premises. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes was released several years earlier and does far more to satirically subvert 1950s gendered power dynamics, even as it similarly sees its heroines married off by the end. In a time when the country was barreling toward a new future, the Day/Hudson films found comfort in reverting to regressive norms.

Illustration for article titled America eased into the ’60s with the bedroom comedies of Doris Day and Rock Hudson

Screenshot: Pillow Talk

They’re still a hell of a lot of fun to watch, though. Pillow Talk is the best of the bunch, but all three are genuinely hilarious, with a nonstop comedic pace that’s hard to find in today’s movies. Tony Randall is the trilogy’s secret weapon, and his repartee with Hudson is as great as his work on TV’s The Odd Couple. Day earned an Oscar nomination for Pillow Talk, which is welcome recognition of her pitch-perfect mastery of the wide-eyed reaction shot. The hilariously deadpan Thelma Ritter was nominated for Best Actress In A Supporting Role, and the film scored nods for Best Art Direction, Best Score, and Best Original Screenplay (which it won). Lover Come Back earned a screenplay nomination as well. All three films were solid commercial hits, and Pillow Talk was a full-on smash, holding the number one spot at the U.S. box office for seven weeks.

Though Day was paired with dozens of leading men across her career, including Cary Grant and James Garner, her partnership with Hudson captured the public imagination on a whole other level. Much like in Overboard, where the real-life relationship between Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell somewhat mitigates the ickiness of the problematic premise, the real-life friendship between Day and Hudson bleeds through in every scene. Even if their characters aren’t on equal footing, Day and Hudson always feel like equals as performers. As Day told People in 2011, “I think the reason people liked our movies is because they could tell how much we liked each other.”

Rewatching these films today, there’s a meta tension to their idealized mid-century heteronormativity. Hudson was a closeted gay man who had to carefully keep his private life from leaking to the press lest it end his career. Day, meanwhile, experienced physical, emotional, and financial abuse across her four marriages, all while fighting to maintain control of her life and career. In 1985, Day and Hudson were key to a very different kind of turning point in American history: His gaunt appearance on her new talk show played a major role in his decision to publicly announce his AIDS diagnosis. That, in turn, had a huge impact on how the public perceived the disease.

The simplistic heteronormative bliss Day and Hudson peddled onscreen probably only ever existed in fiction. Yet their pairing remains a huge touchstone of American pop culture. Modern rom-com creators often cite 1940s screwballs as inspiration, but these 1960s bedroom comedies are perhaps even more of an influence. For as much as the rom-com genre can sneakily upend gender norms and claim space for women’s stories, it can also provide the illusion of equality while ultimately giving way to something far more regressive. When in doubt, the genre tends to return to its most retrograde roots. As funny as they are, the Day/Hudson films paint a less-than-sunny portrait of a panicked country on the cusp of big change.

Next time: Screw it, let’s just watch Patrick Dempsey juggle in Made Of Honor.

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How Las Vegas became the world’s casino capital

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These days, it’s impossible to think of Las Vegas without the image of the lights on the strip and glamorous casinos coming to mind. But the Vegas we know of 2020 wasn’t always that way; and it took a long, long time to get its reputation for being the world’s casino capital. Let’s take a trip down memory lane and get to the root of how Las Vegas became the city that never sleeps.

A historical journey

It’s hard to believe these days, but the Las Vegas region was once an abundant marshland stock full of rich vegetation. That is, until the marsh receded, and the waters disappeared, transforming the landscape into a desert, with the trapped water underground sprouting life and forming an oasis.

It was during the 19th century that the explorer Antonio Armijo from Mexico foraged the way from New Mexico to California on the first commercial caravan. It was a member of the group, Rafael Rivera who rode west to find water and venture through the desert, setting his eyes upon Las Vegas Springs. Las Vegas was therefore named ‘the meadows’ after the grasses found growing there.

Years went on and both Mormon and Mexican settlers began to filter through. In 1890 it was decided by railroad developers that Las Vegas would serve as a spot along the San Pedro, Salt Lake City and Los Angeles railroad route as well as connecting to major cities along the Pacific Coast. From there on, Vegas boomed with stores, boarding houses and saloons popping up around the area. This was the beginning of the Las Vegas as we know it — with railroad workers and ranchers enjoying the gambling and drinking through illegal speakeasies and bootleg casinos operating despite the ban on gambling in Nevada in 1910.

In 1931 gambling once again became legal in the state, with new casinos and showgirl venues opening up along Fremont Street to entertain the thousands of workers who flocked the city during the construction of the Hoover Dam. The first hotel, El Rancho Vegas, opened up in 1941 along Highway 91. Its success inspired others to open up their own hotels along the highway which would one day become the strip. Tourists began to flock to the city over the next few decades to enjoy the casino scene and see incredible artists like Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra perform.

The birth of the mega resort

It was in 1966 the businessman Howard Hughes purchased the Desert Inn hotel; this was followed by over a dozen more hotel purchases, pushing out the mobster-owned hotels that had previously dominated Las Vegas. The concept of the mega hotel came about in 1989 when Steve Wynn opened the Mirage as the first hotel resort in the city. By 1994, Las Vegas was the home of more than 86,000 hotel and motel rooms with 13 of the 20 largest mega resort hotels in the world. It was during this era that the Strip became populated with more hotels and casinos, with developments inspired by the iconic cities and countries of the globe including Egypt, Paris, New York and Rome.

Las Vegas in the 21st century

The Las Vegas of today is well and truly established as a home for entertainment and casinos — which remain the biggest source of income for the city. However, there’s no doubt that Vegas faces more competition than ever before from the virtual world, with more people than ever before opting to play at an online casino, rather than play in the old fashioned way, but Vegas will always have the advantage. For many, it’s a once in a lifetime trip that an online casino can’t replicate, but do the online equivalents help to increase interest in Vegas?

The bright lights of Vegas is attracting billions of dollars in investment as many try and get a slice of the revenue that the sector has to offer. During 2019 over 42.52 million people came to visit Las Vegas from all around the world. Domestically, it was shown to be the second most popular destination for U.S. traveller’s dream spots after New York.

These days, Las Vegas continues to thrive and be a source of entertainment for millions of visitors from around the world looking to experience what the city has to offer. With new generations becoming interested in casino games — and some incredible musical residencies continuing to be announced — Las Vegas surely will continue to be one best places to go for a unforgettable dream destination for many.

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Land-Based Casinos

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What can people find at some of the biggest land-based casinos in Canada? From Niagara Falls to Toronto, there is something for everyone at casinos in Canada, including table games, slots, roulette, blackjack, and other games. There are also many poker and blackjack tournaments held throughout the year and it is easy to find jackpots or slots with free spins at the casinos. Many casinos also have hotels, bars, and numerous restaurants which are perfect for players seeking some comfort. A relaxing casino experience for all ages can be found in many different places in Canada. Choose one from below.

Choosing a casino depends on your tastes and location within Canada. Do you want to experience the grandeur and splendour of nature while placing a bet? Then head to Niagara Falls. Do you want to see a show? Choose a casino with a show that will be perfect for you. If you are looking for pure relaxation, then check out some of the casinos with spas and world-class dining. Entertainment is also a large part of the casino experience in Canada. Musicians, bands, comedians, and other types of entertainment continue to be found at all of the biggest casinos.

Some Big Casinos Near Nature

Casino Niagara is located in one of the most beautiful places in Canada and the world. People from all around the globe come to experience the best of both worlds at Casino Niagara. Players have access to beauty and scenery while spending time at one of the biggest casinos in Canada. The casino has two floors with over 1200 slot machines, poker, and other table games. There are also many different restaurants and even a comedy club. The sports bar and casino was refurbished back in 2017, meaning that it has not lost any of its charm and shine.

ST Eugene Golf Resort: Casino of the Rockies is a golf and nature lovers’ paradise. The location could not be any more splendid. People can find the casino between the Rockies and Purcell Mountains. Furthermore, the casino has an interesting history after it was converted from an Indian Residential School. It was then opened in the early 2000s. St Eugene has table games, electronic roulette, baccarat, and blackjack. There is also a golf course, restaurant, bar, spa, and hotel that is highly rated in Canada. Overall games are limited so most people come for golfing and betting fun.

Caesars Windsor is famously located on the riverbank in Windsor, Ontario. Visitors from both Canada and the States frequent the casino and hotel. Players can see the Detroit and Michigan skyline from the area. There are two floors of slots, table games, and plenty of poker tables. Blackjack, baccarat, and roulette are also available at the casino. It has beautiful restaurants, a gym, bars, slots, and live sports. Check out the Titan 360™, a 10-foot tall slot machine with 5800 pounds of wins at the click of a button. It’s the largest slot machine in the world and great fun.

  • Enjoy the size of Casino de Montreal and Hard Rock Casino
  • Enjoy the big and beautiful Casino Niagara or ST Eugene Golf Resort
  • Enjoy High Culture at Elements Casino Brantford

River Rock Casino Resort – In Transit

Are you passing through Vancouver Airport and have a long transit? Hire a cab and spend some time enjoying slot machines at River Rock Casino Resort. There are slots galore and the different themes make it an enjoyable visit for all. There is even a Dungeons and Dragons slot for gamers. A fourteen-table game room can be found at the casino and international poker tournaments are held regularly. Other features include a VIP area, spa, live music, 24-hour food and drink, as well as other entertainment. Richmond is also worth a quick visit, especially for some delicious seafood.

Casino de Montreal – The Big Gun

Casino de Montreal is 526,488 square feet of casino excitement. The casino has around 20 thousand visitors each day and is one of the biggest casinos on the globe. If you are still unconvinced about the size of the place, then imagine five floors of slots and table games. 3,000 machines and 111 table games make the casino seem even more mammoth. Casino de Montreal games can be played in a smoke-free environment and many players comment on the user-friendly games and helpful staff. Complimentary drinks and top-rated gourmet food is all part of the experience at Casino de Montreal.

Hard Rock Casino – Another Big One

Hard Rock Casino is another large casino located in Vancouver, British Columbia. The casino is over 80,000 square feet, making it a big one in Canada. Hard Rock has gaming tables, slots, baccarat and a poker room. The casino includes 70 casino tables and 1,000 slots. Private rooms and high roller areas are also available. However, the Hard Rock name is known for excellent food and this is what people love about this casino. Many players comment on the quality of the food here. It even has a 1,000 seat theatre, making it great for dining and a show.

Elements Casino Brantford – Enjoy High Culture

Elements Casino Brantford is a historical gem for culture in Ontario. It is a charity casino that was established last century. It includes the Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts, which is a high society entertainment venue in Ontario. The centre is well known to performing arts enthusiasts in Ontario and Canada. Players come to see a show, enjoy some gourmet food and a game. The casino also has plenty of slots, table games, blackjack, baccarat, sic bo, three card poker, roulette, and other games. There is also a 14-table Texas Hold ‘Em poker room. Enjoy all the excitement.

River Cree Resort and Casino – Sports Lovers

River Cree Resort and Casino is a sport and gaming venue located in Edmonton that should not be overlooked. It has 39 tables of various money limits and over 1,000 slots. There are also a few different places to dine while enjoying a bet and other things to experience. There is a fitness centre, spa and a 200 room resort. However, the most interesting feature of this casino is the two hockey rinks, which are often used by the Edmonton Oilers for practice. It is possible to watch the team practice and go for a meal and some gaming fun.

For the ones who fancy playing online we recomend visiting canadiancasino.org!

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Top 8 Online Games That Kids Can Play Without Much Parental Supervision

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The gaming industry has been quite widespread since its inception. With the advent of globalisation and technology, this industry is reaching new heights. Kids these days are more inclined to the internet than they are to books. 

The internet has more information about everything than anywhere else and is very easily accessible. This further makes some parental control necessary. Most parents are worried about their kids playing violent video games that can further affect their mental health. 

Nevertheless, you cannot stop a kid from finding ways to log in to the internet, nor can you keep them away from playing video games. You can always supervise them on their media consumption. But that also gets tiresome after a point. This is when it gets necessary for you to introduce them to games that are not only kid-friendly but are also of their liking. 

If you are in a similar situation, looking for a way out, this article will surely help. Further mentioned are a few games that you can let your kid play while you concentrate on your work and well-being.  

1. Gummy Drop

Finding games that you can let your kids play without supervision is quite a task. With games like Gummy Drop, you do not have to worry one bit. With beautiful graphics and interesting gameplay, it does not take long for your kid to get hooked to the game. 

With new cities and interesting content being added almost every day, this 3 puzzle game is a good choice for your kids to play. It also connects to your Facebook account, letting you play with your other friends. It is also a nice way for your kids to improve their general knowledge and problem-solving skills. 

2. Skribbl

If you were a fan of Pictionary when you were growing up, you should definitely introduce your kids to this game. While the rules of Pictionary remain the same, this game improves on the visual aspect. With all of their friends in the same server, your kid can easily get hooked to this game. 

Easy and fun to play – once the server is set up, each player will get a word that they have to draw on the screen. The motive of the game is to help the other players guess your word. Each round chooses players at random. While it is advised that you use a tablet and a stylus to play this, you can always sketch with your finger. 

3. Ludo Supreme

A classic in every sense of the word, online ludo needs no introduction. There are some new features that are added in the game version of this app. It lets you connect to your Paytm account and earn real money while playing the game. 

Along with such amazing features, you can also play it for fun with your family or friends. It has other versions as well that come in different languages, especially in India, given the diverse nature of the country. You can download the LUDO for your android phones

4. Houseparty

There is no doubt that Houseparty has been one of the most popular downloads this pandemic. This is a networking app that lets you add as many as seven friends and play different games face-to-face via video calls. 

The novel approach of phone gaming made this a very widely chosen app. While playing games with your friends is always fun, this app lets you see and talk to them as well. Some of the most played games in this app include Heads Up!, Chips and Guac, Trivia and Quick Draw. With such amazing features and games, this is a worthwhile download for your kid. 

5. Monopoly

Monopoly is a very interesting game, which you can get your kids. Along with being fun, it can be played by any age group and is always stimulating your brain. This board game is an all-time classic that is now available on mobile platforms. 

The good thing about it being on the phone is that now your kids can play it with their friends as well, and all from the convenience of your home. 

6. Rocket League

If you have ever wondered what it would be like to play soccer but with cars, this game is exactly that. You get to pick a car at the beginning of the game in an oversized field with an oversized ball. Then start the five-minute matches where you have to score goals against them. 

To make it even more fun, this game allows the player to add up to three friends on the same server. It also has options where you can choose between casual play and ranked online play. Nevertheless, in both gameplays, you can earn new cosmetic looks for the car and get a chance to score more goals. 

7. UNO

Another all-time classic, UNO has been a very celebrated game all these years. The original company of UNO came out with the online version that is available on both iOS and Android devices. Since they are the copyright holders, you already know, the gameplay cannot get any better than this. 

Nevertheless, since it is a multiplayer game, you can play it both against your friends or strangers. It’s fun aesthetics, and new rules make it more interesting. It now has different modes of play and tournaments as well. You can also partner up and play 2v2 to win together. With servers available all around the world, you can connect to anyone you know. 

8. Guess The Word

Very obvious from the name itself, this game is known to be one of the most popular downloads in this list. It not only helps your kids spend some unsupervised time with themselves but also ensures that they learn new things in the process. 

The game contains different levels which get harder as your kid progresses, further making it more interesting and attractive. If you have some free time on your hands, you can also jump in and play with your kids.

Final Thoughts

So, these are the 8 games that kids of all ages can play without any tension. Above all, parents don’t have to panic or keep an eye on them all the time. 

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