Things We Saw Today: The Legends of Tomorrow Writers Have A Reminder About Trump and Sexual Assault


The Legends of Tomorrow writers’ room recently tweeted the above reminder that Donald Trump is unfit for any office. While other industries are reeling and calling for action in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein sexual assault allegations, the White House remains under the thumb of a man who once bragged about grabbing women without their consent, and who has been accused by a dozen women.

  • Actress Camila Mendes, who plays Veronica Lodge on Riverdale, will take part in an auction for Project HEAL, a nonprofit organization that helps people suffering with eating disorders pay for treatment. She spoke about what working with this charity means to her, given her own past struggles with an eating disorder. (via EW)
  • Stranger Things released this strange TV-based promo for Season 2. What’s up with those pumpkins? (Via MTV)

  • Bim Adewunmi published a thought-provoking look at how power and racism intersect in the Harvey Weinstein scandal over at Buzzfeed.
  • In this new clip from Thor: Ragnarok, Loki and Thor meet Hela for the first time, and she doesn’t buy that they’re Odin’s sons. (via Nerdist)

  • In this other new clip from Thor: Ragnarok, Loki and Thor meet Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster, and Goldblum is just as awk-weird as I dreamed. (via ScreenRant)

That’s all I’ve got! What’d you see today, TMS readers?

(Featured image via Shutterstock)

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Things We Saw Today: Reviews for The Snowman Are So Bad They Almost Make Me Want to See It

The thriller starring Michael Fassbender as a person named Detective Harry Hole chasing a killer who loves making snowmen or something is getting scorchingly critical reviews.

A few of my fave pull-quotes regarding The Snowman from Rotten Tomatoes, where it’s currently at a cringe-inducing 11%:

“The Snowman” is like if aliens studied humanity and tried to make their own movie in an attempt to communicate with us. —The Arizona Republic

“The Snowman” is ugly and nasty, but that’s not the worst of it. The worst is that it’s boring and makes no sense. —The San Francisco Chronicle

Playground snowball fights have more suspense and intrigue than “The Snowman,” the most puzzlingly bad movie of the year. —Detroit News

Completely, atrociously, perhaps even impressively, stupid. —The Globe and Mail

I know this means we should stay away—and I’ve been flinching over the film’s annoying posters in the NYC subway for months (the AV Club calls it among “the worst movie advertising campaigns of all time”)—but sometimes, when a movie gets piled on like this, I’m almost curious enough to want to go to see why. Almost.

Anyway, people have been defacing the ridiculous Snowman posters in the subways. Here’s my favorite alteration that I snapped a few days ago:

(via Rotten Tomatoes, image: Universal, Kaila Hale-Stern)

  • “Amber Tamblyn on Charlyne Yi’s Accusations Against Her Husband David Cross: ‘I Believe Her’”. (via Jezebel) Also:

  • Daisy Ridley has joined a “comedic superhero” movie pitched by actor Josh Gad, that will also include Gad and his Beauty and the Beast co-star Luke Evans. So far everything about this already sounds amazing. (via Syfy)
  • Let’s break down those in-jokes on the Spider-Man: Homecoming deleted scenes. (via Collider)

So what’s on your mind this fine Friday?

This is Josh Gad voicing a snowman. Everything comes full circle.

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Harvey Weinstein Is Apparently Being Awful At “Sex Rehab”

The Hollywood mogul at the center of the widespread sexual harassment and assault allegations is reportedly falling asleep in therapy sessions, claiming conspiracies against him, and “barking” into a mobile phone he isn’t supposed to have.

I wish I could say I was surprised by the reports of Weinstein’s terrible behavior coming out of Page Six, but I’m so far from surprised that I have reached maximum velocity in the state of non-surprise. Page Six is a gossip site, sure, so take everything with a grain of salt—but they also have a long and storied history in gossip, and a lot of well-connected sources. And do you really think a serial harasser like Weinstein would suddenly do an about-face and make a genuine attempt at rehabilitation just because he was finally “caught”? Harvey Weinstein needs to be behind bars, but instead he’s passing his nights in comfort at a hotel and apparently idling away his days, hoping the media storm will pass. According to Page Six:

Weinstein was reported to be at an inpatient facility, but our source says he is actually being treated at an intensive outpatient facility, which allows him to spend nights at a hotel. The clinic offers one-on-one counseling and group therapy sessions, among other treatments.

The source told us, “In one group therapy session, Harvey arrived 15 minutes late. Then, when it was his turn to speak, he launched into a speech about how this is all a conspiracy against him.

The source added that as others at the clinic shared their personal stories, “Harvey fell asleep in his chair. He was only woken up by the ringing of his smuggled mobile phone [which is banned at the facility] . . . Harvey jolted awake, jumped up, immediately took the call and then ran out of the room.”

Weinstein’s no doubt hugely expensive “treatment” is based in Arizona, but it’s unclear to me what any amount of therapy is going to do for someone so vehemently in denial and so obsessed with conspiracies of persecution. He’s apparently moved away from group therapy—what newfound sensitivity, falling asleep while others share their stories—and is now “undergoing individual treatment, and is accompanied at all times by a therapist.”

If I were his therapist, Weinstein’s sense of denial, persecution, and disdain for others would be the first things I’d address. But it strikes me as patently ridiculous that Weinstein, confronted with what’s now more than 40 women on the record accusing him of acts that range from exposure to groping to rape, gets to trot off to “sex rehab” for good optics, as though his problem were on par with other Hollywood figures entering facilities for substance abuse.

Even if Weinstein could be classified as a sex addict—and that’s debatable—the first step in any recovery method is recognizing that one has a problem. Per another source that spoke to Page Six, “He insists he never raped or assaulted anyone, and that all the encounters were consensual. He realizes he has acted like an a–hole, but he still insists he’s not a rapist.” So Harvey Weinstein has gained the self-awareness to classify his actions at “a-hole” level, but is obviously unwilling to take any responsibility for the dozens of claims made that the encounters were anything but consensual. In fact, he’s chalking those allegations up to a big ‘ol conspiracy against him.

That source continued, “He does have his phone, but when he is in therapy, he has to give it to someone else.” Wow, progress is really being made here, when you voluntarily give up your phone during your private therapy sessions. “The characterization of what he said and what happened at the group session isn’t true,” the source finished, but this is also the person relaying Weinstein’s assurance that he never raped or assaulted anyone, so let’s just assume their take on how Weinstein behaved in group therapy is already on shaky ground.

Money and influence don’t disappear even when a figure falls from a position of power, and it’s likely that we’ll see Weinstein lounging around in rehabs for a while. The only people I’m feeling bad for here are his many, many victims, who continue to have their experiences questioned and disparaged by the man who harmed them, and for Weinstein’s therapists, somewhere in Arizona.

(via Page Six, image: Shutterstock)

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The #WhyIWrite Tag Is a (Mostly) Positive and Awesome Tribute to the Written Word

A lot of the hashtags out there right now are addressing important issues like sexual assault (#MeToo), representation in the media (#SWRepMatters) and politics (#IBelieveFrederica). All of these are important, but sometimes it is good to have an escape on the internet that does not remind us of all the battles that still need to be fought.

#WhyIWrite is part of National Day on Writing, so authors, bloggers, and all lovers of the written word have taken to Twitter to express what writing has meant for them. While of course, there are some taking the opportunity to mock the “liberal media,” overwhelmingly it is about people expressing the importance of telling stories.

From the time I was 10 years old, I knew that what I wanted to do was tell stories, and a huge part of that was because it was rare to see people who looked and sounded like me in the books I liked. When I write, I write for that young girl who wanted more than anything to fly with Harry Potter. Also, Math is scary and I don’t care what Cady in Mean Girls said; just because it’s the same in every language doesn’t make it easy!

So why do you write?

(image: Shutterstock.com)

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Scarlett Johansson Assembles the Avengers (and Other Celebrity Friends) to Benefit Puerto Rico Disaster Relief

Imagine Captain America as the narrator of Our Town. It’s kinda perfect, right? Well, I don’t know if that’s the role Chris Evans will be reading, but what I do know is that Scarlett Johansson is gathering her Avengers buddies, as well as some other celebrity friends, for a staged reading of Our Town, which will benefit Puerto Rico’s disaster relief effort.

The people of Atlanta, GA are really lucky in that this benefit reading of Thornton Wilder’s play will be happening on November 6 at Atlanta’s Fox Theatre. So far Johansson, who’s currently in Atlanta filming Infinity War, has landed Avengers co-stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans and Mark Ruffalo, as well as additional surprise celebrity guests.

Johansson said this in an official statement:

“The struggle faced by Puerto Rican residents since their island was ravaged by Hurricane Maria is terribly heartbreaking and has left many feeling hopeless and helpless. It is a great privilege to be able to participate in whatever way I can, to provide some relief to those that are struggling to access even the most basic of human needs in the aftermath of this disastrous event. Please help me and my co-stars in coming together for an extraordinary, one-time-only evening to raise lifesaving funds for a devastated island and to help celebrate the true meaning of community with this unique reading of a great American classic.”

John Gore Organization is backing the benefit, and Gore says “We immediately asked how we could help. We couldn’t be happier to support our friend, Scarlett, and her co-stars in producing this evening for such a worthy cause.”

Proceeds from the evening will benefit The Hurricane Maria Community Relief & Recovery Fund which is housed at the Center for Popular Democracy (CPD). Funds will support “immediate relief, recovery and equitable rebuilding in Puerto Rico for low-income communities of color hit hardest by the storm. The fund will support organizations working on the front lines with these communities.”

If you’re in, or can be in Atlanta in November, tickets go on sale MONDAY over at the Fox Theatre’s website. The Our Town-specific site isn’t up yet, but the address will be FoxTheatre.org/OurTown.

And now, because there’s never not a good reason for this meme, but right now it seems really appropriate:

(image: Teresa Jusino)

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Cartoonist Plays Himself by Trying to Make Fun of Girls Joining the Boy Scouts

When it was announced that the Boy Scouts of America was going to start allowing girls to join all sections of the programs, it was expected that there would be some pushback from different places. I mean girls … in the boy scouts? What’s next? The White House? Anytime women begin to integrate a literal boys’ club, traditionalists act as though the very concept of masculinity/manliness is under attack. Political cartoonist, Rick McKee attempted to “call out” this particular “attack” on traditional male identity in his cartoon published by The Augusta Chronicle.

Sadly, in the words of hit-maker and Rihanna collaborator D.J. Khaled:

Instead of riling people up about the tragic, de-masculinization of the Boy Scouts, people instead were confused as to why this was supposed to be a bad thing. I mean of course, there were some who continued to play themselves, but overwhelmingly, people are not afraid of the Boy Scouts becoming a gender-neutral organization. Because, spoiler alert: boys and girls playing and learning skills together … is something they do most places.

Yet, with all the talk of what this means for the future of the Boy Scouts, there is still a discussion that needs to be had about how the Girl Scouts will continue as an organization if they lose potential members to their brother organization. As some Tumblr users commented:

“This is literally just a way of attracting girls away from the feminism of Girl Scouts to the Christian patriarchy because we still think Boy Scouts are better because they’re for boys. …

“Girls joining Boy Scouts is false progressivism. While I think perhaps the days of gendered scouting might be numbered, it shouldn’t be because everyone is now joining the conservative organization of the Boy Scouts.”

And:

“Plus, the girls won’t really be allowed to do all of the scouting things. Just some limited things, in special programs.

“Don’t for a minute believe this means a girl can be an Eagle Scout. It isn’t even close. It’s a bullshit program from everything I’ve read.”

(via Buzzfeed, image: The Augusta Chronicle, Rick McKee/Buzzfeed/Tumblr )

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Things We Saw Today: The Ladies of Riverdale Get Leather’d Up

Back in the summer it was announced that our beloved Riverdale lady duo was going to be getting a motorcycle makeover. Today on Twitter, the official Archie Comics handle posted this image to whet our appetites once more!

The fact that this is going to be an all-female creative team is something to be extra excited about. So mark your calendars for November 15th and pick up your copy. If you want to take a deeper look at some of the art that will be coming up, our original article has some exclusive images and an interview with members of the creative team. I don’t know about you, but I am looking forward to seeing all the ladies of Riverdale pull a Furiosa. (via Twitter)

    • Get Out continues to slay as it racks up multiple nominations it the upcoming 2017 Gotham Awards, including Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Actor and the Bingham Ray Breakthrough Director Award. (via Deadline)
    • The new Star Wars Battlefront II single-player mode looks beyond fantastic, especially for the dope looking female protagonist—AND we are playing on the Dark Side of the Force. (via Nerdist)
    • An opposites attract romance of business ideas is coming, as it was announced that Vogue and Vice are teaming up together to create “Project V’s.” Yeah, 2018 is gonna be interesting. (via Jezebel)

So what’d you see today?

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Rose McGowan Cancels All Upcoming Appearances Because She Has Activism to Do

Ever since news of Harvey Weinstein’s abuses broke, actress-director-activist Rose McGowan has been at the center of a lot of support, backlash, and everything in between. Add onto that the general emotional overwhelm we’ve all felt as all the “me toos” started rolling out, and it’s understandable that McGowan might not be too keen on flash bulbs and film industry hoopla right now.

McGowan had been invited to attend the Tallgrass Film Festival in Wichita today to receive the Ad Astra Award for her work in independent film, as well as host a screening of her short film, Dawn (starring Casual‘s Tara Lynne Barr).

However, last night McGowan sent word that she was not only unable to attend the festival but, according to E! News, she was canceling “all upcoming public appearances due to compounding factors surrounding recent revelations in the Harvey Weinstein sexual harassment case.”

The festival gave her full support in her decision. Tallgrass Creative Director Lela Meadow-Conner said in a statement, “While we’re disappointed that Rose cannot be here with us in person, we understand that her well being is the priority. We support her and our thoughts are with her. We’ll seize this opportunity to amplify her message and celebrate all the women filmmakers with works here at the 15th annual festival.”

To that end, they have pulled together a panel of women filmmakers who will be attending the festival with their films for a frank conversation about how to make a more equitable and safe film industry. Titled #WokeWomen: A Candid Conversation with Tallgrass’ Female Filmmakers, the panel will be held tonight at 9 PM, hosted by Amy Nicholson and John Wildman, and feature Dorie Barton, Skye Borgman, Madeleine Cooke, Simoné Nortmann, Deborah Pearl, Devin Sanchez and Deborah Riley Williams.

And McGowan’s spirit will still infuse everything. Says the festival’s Program Director, Nick Pope, “Tallgrass has sought to honor Rose McGowan for three years now as we have always felt she epitomizes our motto: Stubbornly independent. We also felt that, in the process of the deserved attention her activism receives, arguably her presence as an independent film icon and genuine filmmaking talent can get lost in the mix. It was our goal to shine a light on her career and her talent and put that part of the Rose McGowan equation front and center for a very special evening. We will still honor her achievements from afar.”

McGowan should absolutely take whatever time she needs to do what she needs to do for herself, because the world needs outspoken voices like hers in the fight. Eventually, she’ll bring her activist voice back to her storytelling and film life, and will remain a force to be reckoned with.

Until then, there’s nothing saying we have to wait for her to do it. Let’s all use our talents to strengthen the fight for equality ourselves, shall we?

(image: Shutterstock)

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Mayim Bialik Apologizes Again For Her Misguided Take on Sexual Harassment – But we also need to look at why she’s faced more of a firing squad than many actual harassers.

The Big Bang Theory actress Mayim Bialik met a firestorm of criticism for an opinion piece on Hollywood’s culture of sexual harassment published in The New York Times. After her first public reaction appeared to double down and rebuff her critics, a new apology finally seems to have processed the reasons for the push-back she received.

Bialik’s op-ed was called “Being a Feminist in Harvey Weinstein’s World,” but what feminist points the piece had to offer were drowned out by Bialik’s seeming suggestion that she had escaped harassment by regulating her appearance and behavior. By implying that her lack of a traditional Hollywood “look,” modest dress, and a non-flirtatious approach was key to a harassment-free existence, Bialik was interpreted as victim-blaming—putting the onus on the harassed rather than the harasser.

Beyond it being old-fashioned and sexist to tell women to cover up or else risk provoking assault, this is also patently false. Anyone who has been subject to harassment knows that it never matters what you wear or look like. You are not protected by age or actions. Harassment is about power and sexism, not the length of your skirt.

As US Weekly summarizes:

In the piece published on Friday, October 13, Bialik, 41, wrote that as a way of being “self-protecting and wise,” she has decided “that my sexual self is best reserved for private situations with those I am most intimate with. I dress modestly. I don’t act flirtatiously with men as a policy.”

Many readers, including fellow actresses Emily Ratajkowski and Gabrielle Union, were quick to condemn the Big Bang Theory star for the essay, in which she also described the “luxury” of being an “average-looking” person in Hollywood, noting that it appeared she was blaming victims of sexual assault for their wardrobe choices.

Bialik’s words fell flat in a fraught time when many women and men were coming forward with their own stories of harassment, exposing the gross power dynamics in their industries and laying blame on their harassers and toxic culture. By contrast, Bialik’s preventative measures read like something the Victorians might suggest. Then she made matters worse by initially lashing out at the critical mass she found herself facing:

“It’s so sad how vicious people are being when I basically live to make things better for women,” Bialik wrote on Twitter in the wake of the article gathering a lot of heat. While I’m sure she did receive a fair amount of rude mentions, these were likely from people justifiably upset and concerned about victim-blaming—hardly the cruel trollish abuse so many women have to endure on that same platform as women existing on the Internet.

But now, Bialik has put out a second apology. At least this one strikes the right notes and seems to finally get it:

This, friends, is how you apologize in the social media age. Bialik’s sincerity and solidarity as expressed above is a welcome change from the previous reaction, and I hope that she will be a strong and clear voice on this matter going forward. Responses on Twitter have generally been positive and receptive to the apology.

It’s worth mentioning, however, that while I believe this mea culpa to be helpful and was glad to see it, once again, a woman is in the crossfires and on the receiving end of a torrent of criticism for what she says, much attention diverted from the actual actions of harassment and assault that are still emerging—and still happening.

I can’t help thinking that while Bialik was experiencing this withering blowback, Harvey Weinstein, who has damaged countless lives and grossly reigned in terror for decades, was sitting somewhere in Europe in “sex rehab.” While more and more actresses and actors named incidents of harassment and Hollywood’s callous indifference to it, those they named—if named—shrugged, and went back to their directors’ chairs and executives’ suites. I’d like to see some of those pleading apologies for forgiveness from the actual monsters still roaming free.

Instead, we have recent play-acts like “embattled” Ben Affleck, accused of groping and hypocrisy, suddenly turning up in church with his ex-wife and kids; director Lars von Trier simply denying Bjork’s harassment allegations, and unlikely to suffer career consequences; mega-producer Jeffrey Katzenberg being “deeply, deeply sorry” for using lewd language about Molly Ringwald 22 years too late, while at the same time also denying that he had, in fact, used that kind of language; and on and on. These men seem able to produce a warmly-received public performance or simply brush away their scandals—it’s Bialik who had to clarify herself once more with a Facebook live event with a New York Times editor on Monday, and now this additional apology. I suspect her name will still come up years from now as a victim-blamer while an Affleck is accepting another dubiously earned Oscar.

To be clear: Bialik was right to apologize. Her words were deeply harmful—but she was also made to bear an intense backlash, while the men at hand are doing the bare minimum. Bialik should not walk away from these events the most stigmatized person.

Somehow a story about evils perpetrated primarily by men became focused—again, as always—on what a woman did wrong. I’m tired, for all of us.

(image: Shutterstock)

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Celebrate Spirit Day by Taking a Stand (and Action!) Against LGBTQIA Bullying

Spirit Day, a yearly campaign spearheaded by GLAAD, has arrived again! It’s a campaign designed to show visible support for LGBTQIA youth and against bullying, and GLAAD encourages everyone to stand with them in solidarity by wearing purple. The internet has come out in droves.

Of course, there are the celebrity supporters:

And then there are other amazing, badasses out there contributing to the #SpiritDay hashtag:

Marvel Comics has a special issue devoted to the day:

Even Tony the Tiger is getting in on the act:

You know? I always suspected that he and Toucan Sam were dating, but I haven’t been able to confirm anything …

And then there’s this amazing tweet from HBO’s Westworld, where Maeve reminds us of something very important:

Jokes aside, Spirit Day is important to acknowledge and support. Why? Here are some stats from GLAAD:

So, other than showing solidarity and turning your social media purple, what else can you do to help LGBTQIA youth in the fight against bullying?

  • Donate to GLAAD. They’re working all year round in the fight against discrimination against the LGBTQIA community.
  • Engage with your, or your child’s school. One heartbreaking theme in a lot of stories surrounding Spirit Day is that, very often, other kids and teachers know that bullying is happening, but they don’t do anything about it. Students then don’t feel safe reporting incidents, because they don’t see the point and feel that Whether you’re a student yourself, or the parent of a student, don’t be afraid to organize and demand that your school enact better policies surrounding bullying.
  • I happen to be on the Board of Directors of an arts organization called Arts Out Loud, which focuses on bridging the gap between young LGBTQIA arts students and the higher arts education they want to pursue in order to make their voices heard as artists. So often, LGBTQIA find a safe haven in the arts, and supporting that safe haven can make a huge difference in the life of a bullied kid. If you’d like to donate to Arts Out Loud’s inaugural scholarship program, CLICK HERE.

And most importantly of all, you can help cultivate a more loving and tolerant world in your own day-to-day life by treating every person you encounter with kindness and respect, and teaching your children to do the same.

(image: GLAAD)

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