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The Haves and the Have Nots Recap: Tea and Villainy — Plus, They’re Going There With [Spoiler] and [Spoiler]!

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Warning: The following contains spoilers for Tuesday’s The Haves and the Have Nots. If you’d rather watch first, read later, off you go.

In Tuesday’s The Haves and the Have Nots, Veronica set her sights (and paws!) on a muscle-bound new target, Vinny ordered Sandy to take aim at Wyatt, and holy crap! It looked like that dream Veronica had, in which David told her that he was in love with Hanna, wasn’t just a dream but foreshadowing! Read on, and I’ll explain why!

‘WHAT DO YOU THINK THIS IS, A PAWN SHOP?’ | As “The Executor” began, Wyatt, high as a kite, tried to trade Vinny baubles for heroin. He didn’t even recognize the mobster that he’d stabbed. “You must be as stupid as you look,” cracked Vinny. And at that moment, it would’ve been hard to argue with him, especially as Wyatt willingly, eagerly even, followed him to the basement. (Nothing good ever happens in a basement.) Meanwhile, Veronica phoned Laura at 4 in the morning to give her the day’s to-do list. What, had she awakened her housekeeper? “Sorry, not sorry.” After Veronica hung up, Laura reminded Samuel not to flirt with her boss but neglected to give the same instruction to his biceps.

At a more reasonable hour, Jim discovered that he couldn’t have Wyatt’s getaway car tracked because Katheryn had given Amanda’s former vehicle to Hanna, and she had changed the password. When he phoned Hanna, she informed him that “you don’t have anything to say to me” and ordered him to “get off my damn phone, man.” (How cute is it that Hanna says “man” so much when she’s ticked?) After she hung up on him twice, he enlisted David to speak with her. And call the tracking company. And bring him a sandwich. Guess it’s a good thing David has an inordinate amount of free time on his hands. When he left his home, there was Alissa, in one breath issuing apologies for the previous night, in the next, asking for her purse back. Oh, and a ride. That woman never, ever has a ride!

‘THE WHOLE DAMN PRISON’S GONNA SEE!’ | At the jailhouse, a rookie officer named Kendrick Wilson — a former classmate of Amanda’s — agreed to try to find out anything that he could about Wyatt for Katheryn. Didn’t matter how he was now, inmate Sylvia warned Katheryn, because if she didn’t pay Mama Rose that $1M, he was a dead man. Katheryn wasn’t worried. “There is no one on this planet more ruthless than me,” she insisted. Tough talk for someone cooling her heels behind bars. Elsewhere, after Madison left for work, Jeffrey discovered that Justin had spent the whole night hidden in the hallway. “I was gonna ask you to make love to me,” he said. That was a hard pass from Jeffrey. When he went back inside, Tanner revealed that he’d been there all night, too, to see what his brother had been up to. (How many hiding places does this hallway have, anyway?) Needless to say, Tanner wasn’t pleased by what he’d overheard.

While Candace insisted on checking herself and Benny into a $300/night hotel, David approached Hanna as she was arriving at the Cryer mansion and, greeted as usual with “not a very Christian attitude,” asked why she was so, so hostile. “You’re just a triflin’-ass man,” she replied, “and lowdown like Jim Cryer.” Nonetheless, given Wyatt’s drug problem, Hanna would call the tracking company to get her account separated from Jim’s. Afterwards, David told Hanna that his mother had been a janitor, and he’d been so embarrassed, he’d hidden from her at his own graduation. Why was he telling her this? “I’m trying to compliment you on the standards you tried to set for your children,” he said. “I just wanted you to know that I admire you.” I seriously can’t believe we just watched that scene. Where these two are concerned, that counts as huge progress. On his part, was it… flirting? Either way, I’m fascinated.

the haves and the have nots recap season 7 episode 15 vinny shoots wyatt‘ARE YOU THREATENING ME?’ | At Charles’, the president questioned Conley about his rumored drinking problem and, when the senator suggested he call Candace, cracked, “Now I know you’ve been drinking.” In any case, Charles wanted Conley to stay out of his, er, affairs. At Veronica’s, the lady of the house could barely keep her eyes in her head when she got a gander at Samuel cleaning her pool free of charge. She told Laura that she didn’t want to meet her husband, then sent her maid upstairs so that she could introduce herself and attempt to “comfort” him on the death of their son. Rebuffed, Veronica immediately came up with an errand for Laura to run — in full Veronica drag — so that she could be alone with the hottie. Finally, Vinny woke up a now-sober Wyatt in the basement and ordered Sandy to shoot him. Since Sandy barely had the stomach to pour a shot, much less plug anybody, Vinny took the gun from him and bang! Did it himself… or so we were led to believe. Do you think Vinny really put Wyatt out of our misery? What’s Veronica’s endgame where Laura is concerned? Hit the comments with your theories.

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Death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Stirs Powerful Reactions

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Legendary Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died on Friday at the age of 87, prompting an outpouring of tributes and condolences from America’s political grandees. The death of a liberal lion on the court in the stretch run of the 2020 election also sparked immediate speculation about whether President Trump will be able to replace her with a conservative jurist before inauguration day.

The Democrats’ 2016 nominee Hillary Clinton saluted RBG as a pathbreaker:

Former president Jimmy Carter, who first appointed RBG as a federal judge, saluted her as a “beacon of justice.”

Former Republican president George W. Bush saluted RBG’s lifelong “pursuit of justice and equality”:

Elizabeth Warren, the Massachusetts senator and 2020 presidential primary candidate, bid a heartfelt goodbye to her friend “Ruthie” whom she called an inspiration in her own legal career.

James Clyburn, the third ranking Democrat in the House, praised Ginsburg’s “unwavering commitment to justice for all.”

Senator Cory Booker, who also ran for the Democratic nomination in 2020, praised RBG as a “warrior for justice.”

Ginsburg’s death being so close to the election will likely throw Washington into turmoil, with Mitch McConnell promising that “Trump’s nominee will receive a vote on the floor of the United States Senate.” But because Republicans blocked Obama nominee Merrick Garland’s appointment in March of 2016, citing an upcoming election, Democrats are calling for the Senate to wait until after inauguration day 2021 to fill the vacancy.

Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer repeated McConnell’s statement on Garland’s nomination word-for-word:

News began breaking Friday night of remarks by key Republican moderates in the Senate who could stand together and prevent the seating of a new justice until the next president is inaugurated. New York Times reporter Jonathan Martin reported on Maine Senator Susan Collins’ opposition to a hasty confirmation:

Reporters for Alaska media outlets passed on similar word from Sen. Lisa Murkowski:

As for McConnell, his full statement was complete with linguistic gymnastics that cast his promise to bring a new Trump nomination to a prompt vote as something other than rank hypocrisy:

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On ‘Ratched,’ Sarah Paulson Terrorizes Patients at Calabasas’ Famed King Gillette Ranch

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Ryan Murphy’s new “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” prequel, “Ratched,” finally dropped today on Netflix. The highly-anticipated origin story takes a look at the early career of infamous villain Nurse Mildred Ratched (played by a deliciously vicious Sarah Paulson) as she perfects her special brand of patient care and lobotomy skills at the fictional Lucia State Hospital. Though it is getting slammed by critics (Mashable calls it “the worst season of ‘American Horror Story,’” while Variety deems it “inscrutable” and “gratuitously unpleasant”), the show is not a total waste. Set in Monterey County in 1947, “Ratched” has all of the engaging markings typically employed by Murphy — vivid set design, dramatic cinematography, general campiness, and locations that, no matter how macabre, draw you right in.

Shot in both Northern and Southern California, Lucia State Hospital is actually an amalgamation of three different Los Angeles spots, namely King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas, which was used for all of its exterior shots.

Tucked away on 588 acres in the Santa Monica Mountains, the ranch was initially built as a private home for King Camp Gillette (his real name). Yes, that Gillette, as in “the best a man can get,” the guy responsible for inventing and mass-marketing the world’s first disposable safety razor. In 1926, the wealthy entrepreneur and his wife, Atlanta Ella Gaines, purchased a hilly plot (then measuring “only” 360 acres) at the edge of Las Virgenes Valley and commissioned architect-to-the-stars Wallace Neff to build them a luxury retirement home. Today, the property is a designated part of the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority and often used as a filming location, perhaps best known for its appearance as “The Biggest Loser” Ranch, though it has been featured in scores of other productions.  As such, I immediately recognized it when it popped up on “Ratched.”

Click on the Gallery link to read more about King Gillette Ranch from “Ratched.”

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The Antebellum Star on Memories

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Janelle Monáe, star of the new Antebellum, has strong memories of the horror movies she watched growing up.

“I don’t know how you could have been Black when Candyman came out and either not been afraid of it or excited about it. And I was both,” she recalls. “I grew up on horror. I grew up on Nightmare on Elm Street. I grew up knowing what Robert England looked like, outside of Freddy Krueger. That’s how deep I was. When he showed up in New Nightmare I was super excited about that. I grew up watching all the Halloweens. Michael Myers. Jason. I know about Tales from the Hood. Child’s Play. The original Charles Lee Ray.” (Charles Lee Ray, as only true Child’s Play fans would know, is the name of the serial killer who comes to embody the Chucky doll.)

“All of this,” Monáe adds, “was stuff that I would watch with all my cousins, and our noses would bleed, and we would love it.”

We’re talking about Candyman, the 1992 film being revived this year, because it, like Antebellum, uses the horror genre to make America look into the mirror at its hideous racial legacy.

“I love when you can shake people to their core,” she continues. “And they go to sleep thinking about something, wake up thinking about something. I love when the energy of a genre or film can stay with you. And that’s what you want. You want people to remember your work and I think horror does allow me, like so many people, to remember the work. If it’s good, especially. I’ll never forget Candyman. I’ll never forget Chucky. I’ll never forget Freddy Krueger.”

But here’s what she doesn’t remember, from all those hours of watching movies: She doesn’t ever remember seeing a Black woman superhero.

With Antebellum, she combines the horror she saw on-screen with the horror of what she never saw on-screen. She plays a character named Veronica Henley who is, Monáe says, very much a superhero.

Janelle Monáe in Antebellum. Main image: Janelle Monáe and London Boyce in Antebellum. All photos by Matt Kennedy, courtesy of Lionsgate.

“I hadn’t seen a Black woman portrayed in this way. And it was something I’ve been itching to see for years, when I would watch. You know, I will watch films centered around men and them being heroes. I just hadn’t seen that role created for a Black woman in the way that Veronica Henley’s role is. I don’t want to give too much away from the film… but I would say for me that Veronica is a survivor, but she’s also a super-hero. But not a superhero in a Marvel Universe or DC Comics kind of way. And I think when you watch the film, my hope is that you’ll come away with a deeper appreciation for the Black woman.”

Monáe grew up in the ’90s in Kansas City, Kansas, in a religious household just unorthodox enough to let her watch all those scary movies, and, she says, “music with cursing in it.” She started out, of course, in music, and paid homage to her roots with her trademark black-and-white outfits.

“What my black and white uniform represents is working-class people,” she says. “Like my parents and grandparents and people who have been building this country, community by community, every single day, and not really getting too much acknowledgement.”

In keeping with that work ethic, Monáe is the rare modern music star who made a name for herself not by working for a barrage of laptop-equipped producers, but by writing her own songs and playing with a tight, punchily professional band in the tradition of Prince and James Brown. Which isn’t to say she’s anti-computer: Her music embraces sci-fi and android imagery, paying homage to the likes of Fritz Lang and Philip K. Dick.

Add to this her deadpan wit, which arises in response to a question about her style. “Prince had the assless pants,” she says. “I have the black-and-white.”

Of course Hollywood came calling.

Monáe was ready. Her movie knowledge extends far beyond horror and sci-fi—she lists Jordan Peele, Stanley Kubrick, the Wachowski sisters, Tim Burton, and Ari Aster among her favorite filmmakers, as well as Nia DaCosta, director of the upcoming Candyman reboot.

While she prefers not to say too much about her friendship with Prince, she notes that they “always” talked about movies.

Janelle Monáe Antebellum

Janelle Monáe in Antebellum. All photos by Matt Kennedy, courtesy of Lionsgate.

“He’s the one who told me to watch Black Orpheus. I had never seen the film before,” she said. “He loved movies. He encouraged me to make more movies as well.”

The movies love Monáe, too. This past year the Oscars invited her to perform an opening number that doubled as a celebration of some films that the Academy overlooked, including Us, Queen & Slim, and Midsommar.

Monáe said during the performance that she was “so proud to stand here as a Black, queer artist” and pointedly celebrated “all the women who directed phenomenal films.” It was a notable observation, given that no women were nominated for best director — and only one female-directed film, Greta Gerwig’s Little Women, had been nominated for Best Picture.

“There are certain things that I didn’t say in rehearsals that I did say live,” she noted with a laugh.

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