Corinne Olympios Comments Publicly on Bachelor in Paradise Incident for the First Time

Corinne Olympios and DeMario Jackson, the two Bachelor in Paradise contestants involved in a sexual encounter on set that prompted a producer to file a complaint over alleged misconduct, have each released their first comments about the matter that have not come merely from “sources” close to them.

Read more…


Jezebel

Selena Gomez Needs To Keep This Bootleg Farrah Fawcett Wig Because She Has Never Looked As Glamorous 

selenagomezbadliarheaderheader

It’s as if Jessica Alba and Theodore Seville made a baby with stage 2 Kylie Jenner lips who went on to become the forest’s #1 Farrah Fawcett impersonator and that is the greatest compliment you can give anyone.

Selena Gomez released the video for the song that I actually like, Bad Liar (we all know I have shit taste), and it’s a riveting elementary school production of an unauthorized Wonder Years episode with plot twists, bad wigs and the greatest performance from a child since North West acted like she knew who Kanye West was on an episode of Keeping Up the Kartrashians. Selena proves that she’s Nick Jr.’s answer to Meryl Streep, because she can play any role. A fetus-aged Winnie Cooper? Selena can do it! A sleazy principal in a pornstache (who looks more like a 4-year-old boy in costume as a lazy Ned Flanders)? Selena can do it! A gym teacher in an off-brand Laurie Forman from That ’70s Show wig? Selena can do it! A scorned mom in plastic tarantula eyelashes? Selena can do it! Selena can do it all!

In the video, Selena plays a high school student, a gym teacher and her parents who look like the first couple to show up to a key party. At first, you’re supposed to think that High School Selena is in love with Principal Selena, but just when you think a reverse gender Mary Kay Letourneau situation is going on, we find out that Principal Selena is High School Selena’s dad and his side piece is Gym Teacher Selena who High School Selena is in love with. The drama!

So basically Selena Gomez is in love with Selena Gomez. Why do I have a feeling that she got the plot for this video from a list titled “Totally Awesome Music Video Ideas” that she fished out of Taylor Swift’s trash can?

And I’m not sure what’s creepier: the end where Selena teases a new song called Fetish while looking like an 8-year-old runaway or THIS:

selenabadliar2

Pics: YouTube

Dlisted

‘House of Cards’ Season 5 Is a Bloody, Addictive Mess

One of myriad problems raised by the Trump Presidency (a low priority problem, to be sure) is that so much of what happened leading up to and following the election has been — in a sense — normalized. I have lived through quite a few Presidential campaigns in my life, and while the promise of drama almost always exists, it usually fizzles out on election day, that 2000 election notwithstanding (I will note, however, that America was strangely serene during those days between the election and when the Supreme Court gave the Presidency to George W. Bush, no doubt because neither of the candidates in the 2000 election inspired much passion on either side of the aisle). But the 2016 election lived up to and exceeded anyone’s wildest expectations for drama, and in the Trump era, it’s now expected as a normal course of business.

For political dramas, the end result is that storylines have to be pushed beyond their breaking point to sustain as much drama as real-world politics. The West Wing would no longer work in this political climate, which is why we have Designated Survivor, which is The West Wing set against the backdrop of a terrorist attack that killed nearly every member of all three branches of government.

Likewise, it’s not enough for the fifth season of House of Cards to present a close Presidential race that isn’t decided until days after the election, as in the 2000 election. In House of Cards, President Underwood — faced with certain electoral defeat — manufactures a constitutional crisis that drags on for months. Terrorist attacks are staged, more or less. Polling stations are closed down. The election is thrown to the House of Representatives, and even after that, a re-vote is required to settle the matter. In the meantime, the country is run by the Vice President, who happens to be Underwood’s wife, who only gained the position by virtue of what can only be described as a political caper. And that’s just the first few episodes of this season of House of Cards before Underwood retakes his Presidency, which is immediately thrown back into chaos. Oh, fuck it: House of Cards kills off some more characters, too, because the popularity of Game of Thrones requires it.

It’s an exhausting season of television to watch, all the moreso because House of Cards rarely provides big, satisfying moments. The series often builds storylines toward big dramatic confrontations, which are then glossed over in a time-jump or dealt with in a backroom deal or election that takes place offscreen. The problem is particularly egregious this season, after the writers put themselves into a corner with an impeachment hearing and then seemingly invented a twist that would explain away the many, many inconsistencies and narrative black holes the show took us through this year. Indeed, even when there are victories, there are no celebrations in House of Cards, in part, because there are no characters for whom we can root. They’re all awful. Every goddamn last one of them.

The storylines, however, seem almost beside the point in House of Cards. This show is almost entirely a showcase for Kevin Spacey to deliver folksy colloquialisms, rage at Cabinet members and Congresspeople, and pontificate to the camera. Meanwhile Robin Wright delivers her lines with a cold, clipped efficiency designed to ensure that no one will ever feel anything for her beyond an appreciation for her ability to shut down an argument with a few well chosen words or an icy stare that could wilt the sun.

Yet, as messy and nonsensical as the plotlines have become, and as predictable as the actions of the characters are, House of Cards remains inexplicably as addictive as ever. It’s a series that always holds the carrot stick tantalizingly within reach, but never lets the viewers take a bite. The pursuit, however, is where the fun lies in Cards. We spend 13 conflicted hours each year, hoping that the Underwoods will finally get their comeuppance, while secretly praying that they will continue to escape it. They’re a fun couple to hate, so much so that a show of humility or an ounce of passion might constitute a character assassination. The moment we feel anything beyond a loathing respect for the Underwoods is the moment House of Cards stops being fun.

The way the writers continue to pin themselves into corners suggests that that moment may arrive sooner rather than later. Indeed, after this year’s season finale, there’s not much room left in which to maneuver.

Pajiba

Gronk’s Back Must Be Fine…Watch This Laser Slapper From Our Old Buddy

I have bad news for the AFC – Gronk’s back IS BACK and it’s BACK enough to slip on the inline skates to drill some slappers in the street like I imagine he did back in the day growing up in suburban Buffalo with the Gronk bros. Look at how athletic Gronk’s looking in that IG story video. Smooth. HE’S BACK! Move him right up your fantasy rankings.

Gronk played hockey up until the 9th grade when he became a basketball player, according to a 2015 Boston Herald article.

“I was super aggressive,” said Gronk. “Fights, goal scores, checks.”

“(I’m) pretty good,” he said. “I’m all right now whenever I go back and play with my friends back home. I used to play with all the top dogs growing up in Buffalo. But I don’t got those skills really.”

As for his health heading into this season, Gronk tried to tell the media he’s doing great back on June 5, but now that I have the roller hockey video I’m good.

“You just have to always look at the positives,” he said. “Right now I’m feeling great. I’m feeling good out there with the team. We’re just at the stage right now, OTAs, offseason workouts, just getting to know each other, feeling it all out. Everything is going good. So I’m just happy to be where I am, happy to be out on the field playing football and participating.”

This is the year…a full year with no injuries, multiple TDs and then a horrible game against my Bengals in the AFC title game.


Sports Gossip, Sexy WAGs, NFL and Hot Cheerleaders: BustedCoverage

Brandi Glanville Isn’t Going To Let Eddie Cibrian Have The Last Word

Babes for Boobs Live Bachelor Auction - Arrivals

Last week the never-going-to-end triangle between Brand Glanville, her ex Eddie Cibrian and his current wife LeAnn Rimes continued when Brandi accused LeAnn of stalking her and her boyfriend Donald Friese through social media. Eddie shot back by releasing a statement saying LeAnn would never, and accused Brandi of being a drama-creating mess. Brandi would rather wake up with her old nose than stay silent about Eddie and LeAnn, so she responded to his statement.

Brandi came forward with “proof” (a screen grab from Snapchat) that LeAnn had been stalking her on social media. Eddie recently talked to UsWeekly about that. Eddie explained that they had a run-in with her at Nobu in Malibu on Friday night, and the only reason they were looking at her social media accounts was because they were afraid she would post a bad picture of his sons.

“Brandi was very drunk and after already being at our table, started to come back again. Her boyfriend ‘ran interference’ and came to ask if she could take photos with the kids. After witnessing Brandi’s behavior at the restaurant I was concerned about what pictures Brandi might post. We looked at their socials after we got home to make sure there was nothing of concern. That’s exactly how it all went down.”

Brandi released a counter-statement to UsWeekly just two hours after Eddie’s statement was released.

“[Eddie’s] statement does not explain why LeAnn and her assistant were both viewing my boyfriend’s Snapchats prior to our arrival at the restaurant. At the moment we saw them at Nobu we questioned the timing and saw they had viewed the Snapchats prior. This happened while we were at the restaurant. He states he looked at them after he got home. To justify your wife’s stalking of my boyfriend’s social media as you were ‘concerned’ as to what we might post seems a bit far-fetched.

I am not interested in this back-and-forth game. I am asking for them to leave us alone and not monitor our lives through social media and other methods.”

Oh Brandi, Brandi, Brandi – you sold it a little too hard. We all know you, Eddie, and LeAnn are very interested in this stupid back-and-forth game of Immature Adult Desperate Mess Ping Pong. Maybe next time attempt to make the lie believable by saying you’re “somewhat losing interest.” And there will be a next time. Last night Brandi tweeted the following:

She just set the ball up on the tee for Eddie, didn’t she? He’s probably going to work this into his next far-fetched excuse. “Well of course Brandi is paranoid that LeAnn is stalking her. She’s all hopped up on Xanax!”

Pic: Wenn.com

Dlisted

Cory Hardrict on the Long-Awaited Tupac Biopic

In the over two decades since the death of Tupac Shakur, the legendary rapper has been elevated to a borderline Christ-like status. Fueled by the mystery surrounding his murder in 1996, his well-known feud with East Coast rapper The Notorious B.I.G. (who was killed less than a year later in a similarly ambiguous incident) and the ever-increasing relevancy of his socially conscious lyrics, his image has seeped deeply into mainstream culture. 

This Friday, the long-anticipated biopic All Eyez On Me will finally tell his story on the big screen. In this hip-hop history lesson, actor Cory Hardrict tackles the role of one of the genre’s most controversial figures, Jacques “Haitian Jack” Agnant, a manager, promoter and one time friend of the rapper later accused of being involved in an infamous 1994 shooting incident aimed at Tupac.

To prepare for his role, Hardrict actually spoke to the real Haitian Jack about his relationship with Tupac. “If I’m going to play a character, I have to speak to the real guy,” the actor explained. “He played an intricate part during one time frame in Tupac’s life. I spoke with him just to get a sense of who he was during that time. He basically introduced Tupac to the club life and taught him different fashion tips and what to wear and was just looking over him like a big brother figure when Tupac was in New York City.” 

All Eyez On Me

When I asked Hardrict if anything surprising came out of his conversation with this feared and controversial character, he was nonchalant. “You read the stories, but talking to him, he was just a man hanging out,” he said. “It was two men talking. It was great just to hear from him and hear how he viewed Tupac. I took his words and just went with that in the movie.”

Hardrict might not have been phased by a casual conversation with Haitian Jack, but the legacy of Tupac and the importance of this film are not lost on him at all. “Tupac changed the world with his music,” he said. “It’s bigger than rap and hip-hop. I mean, Tupac was just inducted into the rock & roll hall of fame, so there you have it. He appeals to every genre, race, creed, gender across the whole globe. And he was a revolutionary. I believe if he was still alive could have been the president.”

All Eyez On Me

We can’t know what Tupac would be doing now, but 2017 certainly seems like high time to celebrate the rapper’s immense contribution to culture. And later this year, Hardrict will continue to do just that when he appears in a second Tupac-centric film, a crime drama called LAbyrinth. Starring Johnny Depp and Forest Whitaker, the thriller will follow the investigation sparked by the murders of both Tupac and The Notorious B.I.G.. “I’m always playing these gang characters,” Hardrict said of his minor role. “It’s just acting.” 

In his personal life, Hardrict could not be further from the two characters discussed here. Married to Tia Mowry since 2008, he says he can typically be found at home with her and their son, trying his hand at cooking or, more likely, eating something she made. “My favorite thing that she makes? I would say turkey meatballs with pasta,” he said. “Oh my gosh. She could open a restaurant and sell it.” 

All images: Nate Taylor

The post Cory Hardrict on the Long-Awaited Tupac Biopic appeared first on DuJour.

DuJour

Scott Disick Was Too Much Of A Drunk Partier For Bella Thorne 

bellathornedrunkpartier

Last month, every greeting card store in the world gathered up their supply of cards about love and began shredding them all. Because after hearing that the true love union between 19-year-old Bella Thorne and 34-year-old Scott Disick didn’t last, they couldn’t continue to push something that doesn’t exist. A quick second after Bella and Scott began bumping genitals, they went off to Cannes together. But HorSick was over as quick as they began and Bella ditched Scott in Cannes and flew back home. Sources (read: my imagination) tell me that when Bella tried to get back into the States, customs officials immediately shuffled her off to a CDC quarantine tent where she spent several days soaking in a hot ammonia and antibiotics bath. Once she was given the clear, Bella talked to Complex about the love of our time that never was.

Bella’s home life sounds like a never-ending episode of American Horror Story to me. Bella lives in a rave-themed house with her sister Dani Thorne, Dani’s boyfriend, one dog and seven cats. Pussies are already hypnotized by lights, so I can’t even imagine how hypnotized a pussy would get over a glow stick after it ate an ecstasy pill that fell on the floor of Bella’s rave-themed house. And that dog must be wondering what kind of heinous crime it did in a past life to be trapped in that hell prison. But moving on…

Bella throws lots of parties at her rave-themed house and famous tricks regularly slide into her DMs to ask for an invite. They want to go Bella’s parties, because duh, they want to party with THEE Bella Thorne, and also drugs. Lots of drugs. Scott Disick showed up to one of her parties with French Montana. That’s how the makers of Valtrex’s dream couple came to be.

Sources preciously said that Bella left Scott in Cannes because she just couldn’t take his level of boozing. She confirmed that with Complex. Bella loves to party, but her idea of partying is totally different than Scott’s, bruh.

“Scott is really nice, sweet, charming. I don’t drink, and he really drinks a lot. And it just ended up …I just wasn’t down. I was like, ‘I gotta leave.’ We were [at Cannes] a day and a half before I was like I’m booking my flight and leaving. I love to go out and have fun, I love to fucking dance, but I just don’t party hardcore like that and it was way too much for me. I was like, ‘Woah, this is not the way I live my life, bruh.’”

But for the four seconds Bella was in Cannes, she did manage to keep her title as the world’s second biggest ginger fame whore by getting in a paparazzi photo-op with Scott. The Daily Mail posted pictures of Scott looking like he was grabbing Bella’s tit. Bella says that he was just trying to cover up her nipple.

“Honestly, my nipple came out of my bikini and he tried to fix it for me and it looks like he’s grabbing my boob. That’s very nice of you to actually not sit there and stare at my nipple because my boobs are big—they come out of my shirt all the time! You can’t keep those suckers down.”

You know in A League of Their Own when Madge is like, “What if at a key moment in the game my, my uniform bursts open and, uh, oops, my bosoms come flying out?” Who knew that Bella Thorne is the lot lizard version of that character? The paps recently took pictures of Bella coming out of a club with her pierced nips exposed to the paps. After reading what she said, I’m guessing that what happened was that her gigantic Tupperware titties busted her bra open, exposing her nips. Makes sense.

Bella may be the only person in Hollywood who doesn’t know about Scott’s extreme boozing ways. That disappoints me. If you want to be one of the biggest fame whores in the game, shouldn’t you know everything about your fellow fame whores? Study for the job you want, Bella!

Pic: Instagram

Dlisted

Stop the Presses: Danai Gurira Joins ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

Okay, we all know Avengers: Infinity War is going to be bonkers, but the film’s latest casting news has upped the badass quotient by 1000 percent. That is saying a LOT considering it will have everything from the Sorcerer Supreme to a trigger-happy walking, talking raccoon who desperately needs an attitude adjustment.

It has just been confirmed this morning that Danai Gurira (The Walking Dead) who plays Okoye, the stone cold badass leader of Wakanda’s Dora Milaje in Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther has been cast in Marvel Studio’s kitchen sink superhero magnum opus. This is a textbook example of a situation where everyone wins. Audiences will get to see more of the awesome Dora Milaje, who I predict will steal Black Panther under the nose of an incredibly stacked cast, while Marvel (having smelled blood in the water with the rapturous reception of the Black Panther trailer) continues to sneakily weave their interconnected cinematic web.

While I’m fairly certain Okoye won’t have an enormous about of screen time, a little awesome goes a long way and if Okoye interacts with the equally formidable and deadly Gamora and Nebula, my heart will EXPLODE with happiness. Avengers: Infinity War is slated to be released May 4, 2018; below is the Black Panther teaser trailer to watch repeatedly while we count down the 246 days until February 16, 2018.

Pajiba

‘iZombie’: ‘Conspiracy Weary’ Proves Rob Thomas Knows Exactly What His Audience Wants

Other Rob Thomas knows his niche, and he knows it well. He might not ever win any major awards (which is a goddamn shame because the writing alone on Party Down was worthy of a Pulitzer), but he’ll always have a loyal following. Why was I willing to dive headlong into a series about a medical examiner who is secretly a zombie with the infuriatingly bad title of iZombie? Other Rob Thomas goddamnit. Because he knows what we want. Specifically:

Multiple Story-lines That Run Like A Well Oiled Machine

Just a few of the things happening right now on the most recent episode:

— Clive is trying to solve the murder of his former neighbors-turned-zombies

— Peyton is trying to solve the murder, which was made to look like a suicide, of James Wexler who in turn confessed to the murder of Roxanne the dominatrix.

— Ravi, whose plan to infiltrate the zombie hunter movement backfired, is now possibly romantically involved with fellow zombie-hunter-undercover Rachel who is actually a reporter for a very alternative weekly Seattle paper.

— Major is attempting to maintain a normal relationship in the wake of the Chaos Killer accusations (which still doesn’t excuse building a sex fort in a common area).

— Fillmore-Graves, in general, is trying to find the killers Clive is after, building Zombie Island for the inevitable D(iscovery)-Day, cover up any discoveries made by Harley and co.’s zombie hunting group, figure out who blew up Vivan Stoll’s helicopter (R.I.P.), and help D.A. Baracus win the mayoral race (also I see what you did there, Other Rob).

— Liv is essentially involved in all of those plots in one way or another (except for Fort Lust) while also carrying on a blooming relationship with fellow zombie Justin.

Did I get everything? That’s a lot of moving parts, but somehow never feels overwhelming. Probably because there will likely be a natural conclusion which nicely ties up all of the plot points (more on that in a second).

Lovable Bad Guys

Listen, ORT does a lot of things really well. Resolving previous plot points which don’t fit into the crafted current-season-long-arc is not one of them. It’s here that I remind you again that Liv has not one, but two dead boyfriends. We got all of half an episode of closure on poor Drake, and I guarantee we’ll never hear about him again. So as much as it pains me to assert this (and as much I know this will piss of specific commenters), Blaine’s past as a child murdering villain is no longer in play. He’s still a bad guy in that he does a lot of bad things, but those are mostly bad things to other bad people. Since he’s found a somewhat ethical way to supply his customers with brains, he’s not the big bad. And because humans are bad at keeping conflicting thoughts in our head at the same time when it comes to real life let alone a TV show, Blaine’s current portrayal as lovable asshole is who his character is now. I’m not arguing this is necessarily the right thing to do, I’m arguing that this is what Other Rob is doing. (Also he’s clearly not the first showrunner to take this track, yes, Eric Northman, I’m talking about you.)

Which is fine by me because Blaine and Donnie are my new favorite couple. Look at the joy when Liv agrees to join them for a post-rampage snack.

brainparty1.png

Or at how naturally the three Pale Heads fell into a trio.

brainparty2.png

Are you really telling me you didn’t enjoy their «threesome» vision? Or the conspiracy off at the Scratching Post? Is there no joy in your heart? Come on.

He Plays The Greatest Hits
Mm-hmm.
Screenshot 2017-06-14 08.02.26.png

Mm-hmm.
Screenshot 2017-06-14 08.01.13.png

Mm-hmm.
LogalEcholls1.png

Maybe Other Rob brought in his buddy Jason Dohring to do him a solid, but the gratuitous oogling was purely for the benefit of the female gaze.

He Knows How To Craft A Season

Despite Other Rob Thomas’ tendency to ignore elements that don’t work at the moment, he knows how to tell a goddamn story. All of those moving elements I listed up at top? If they aren’t shown over the last two episodes of the season to be the work of one mastermind bad guy, I’ll give up puns for a month. A MONTH. Because as much as ORT knows that the most satisfying resolutions to mysteries are often the simplest ones, he has the ability to resolve all of the mysteries with the same simple answer. With all of the various ins-and-outs of season one and two of Veronica Mars, all of the problems could be summed up with «Beaver’s a psychopath.» I’m suspecting ORT has something similar up his sleeve for iZombie. And if he somehow doesn’t, he’s still going to give us the Liv-Ravi fanfic absolutely no one wants but will love.

Pajiba

Hung Parliament: Observing Politics Through Fan-Fiction

George Osborne loves Peter Mandelson. David Cameron and Nick Clegg’s coalition was rife with cross-party passion. Steve Bannon’s good for a hate fuck. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio are good for a hate fuck. Emmanuel Macron and Justin Trudeau are the fresh faced lovers of the French speaking world. The Clintons do it constantly. And everyone wants to fuck Barack Obama.

If you spend enough time on the internet, you find things you wish you had never seen, but sometimes those impossible to un-see sights offer a fascinating insight into the weird and wonderful ways we parse the most complex and exhausting of worlds. Politics has never been a barrel of laughs, but now it seems to be more hostile than ever, stuck somewhere between a perpetual parody and a blinding signal of impending doom. It’s beyond laughter, but hard to look away from. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that one way our glorious comrades of the internet have decided to process this terrifying world is through fan-fiction. Rule 34 exists for a reason, after all, yet there’s something to be said about fandom looking inevitable panic in the eye and dealing with it as they do everything else: Keep Calm and Write On.

During the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government of the UK, from 2010 to 2015, there was an apparent increase in politics related RPF (real person fan-fiction). Politics may be show-business for ugly people, but by the staid standards of our crop of MPs, the combination of David Cameron, Nick Clegg, George Osborne, Ed Miliband and Andy Burnham proved aesthetically pleasing enough to encourage screeds of fic. Of course, fandom will always gather wherever there are enough decent looking white dudes with an iota of chemistry between then, so seeing the influx of stories where Cameron and Clegg sealed their political pact through illicit liaisons in the Houses of Parliament didn’t so much shock me as reinforce everything I knew about the world.

David Cameron Nick Clegg.jpg

I read a lot of this fic during the first couple of years of the coalition; not because I found it especially titillating (this was pre-Justin Trudeau, and my Never Fuck a Tory rule extended to the literary realm), but because it became so enthralling to see these narratives played out with the most powerful, privileged and despised men in the country. All of the fandom favourite tropes were there: The coffee shop alternate universe (AU); the «aliens made us do it» sex; the exquisite agony of angst brought on by infidelities and political betrayals; the cross-dressing and BDSM porn; and the minutely detailed genre epics that transposed these familiar faces to Orwellian circumstances, albeit with more fucking. Particular characterizations became happily accepted as canon, from Peter Mandelson being the Machiavellian prince of darkness to Ed Miliband being the ceaselessly beleaguered object of pity. Much of this came from the narratives of the press, and it seemed like fandom offered a creative form of emotional catharsis, a moment of freedom amidst the callousness of reality. It’s a parallel reality that tries to pull back the veil in search of the humans behind the machinations of power. Ed Miliband beats his brother David to the Labour leadership; cue hurt/comfort fics that take sides, dissect the pain and hope for a happy ending. George Osborne gets booed at the Paralympics; there’s plenty of stories about the emotional cost of that and the passionate comfort provided by colleagues. Canada elects a fresh faced Prime Minister; clearly every world leader must squabble over him like a high school prom date.

Catharsis could often be less than romantic. Never forget, that government imposed measures of staggering cruelty on the British public that may never be fixed. The richest, most privileged men of our society would never feel those repercussions, even if they were voted out of office since they so often seemed to fail upwards (George Osborne is now editor of the London Evening Standard, despite having no journalistic experience). When you are starved of your power, you find new ways to scratch back a sliver of it. Dark fics were common — gaslighting, assault, prison rape, humiliation, that sort of thing. Fury radiated from those stories, offering a tiny form of vengeance against the men who sentenced us to austerity and societal erasure. These were hard to read, which may be the point.

Ed Balls Andy Burnham.jpg

What surprised me most about this fandom, known frequently as lolitics, was not how seriously engaged in the political process many of its members were — young women have never been given credit for such enthusiasm — but how genuinely invested in these men (and few women) they’d become. Knowing that there were women my age who unironically liked George Osborne, who found him charming and supported his policies, sent more shudders up my spine than any fantasy narrative where he liked being wined and dined by Mandelson. That earnestness revealed the double edged sword of the fandom conundrum — how do you make real life people an abstract concept enough to turn them into fan-fic creations, yet still deeply invest in the harshness of their reality? Lin Manuel-Miranda tread that treacherous path with Hamilton, but he never had to worry about those historical figures voting to treble tuition fees.

For most of us, politics is an impenetrable world, particularly in the UK where class remains our nation’s most beloved fetish. At the last election in 2015, almost a third of our MPs went to private school, with one in ten of those attending the all-boys school Eton. 48% of Tory MPs were privately educated. For context, only 7% of the general population have a private education. Oxbridge is the go-to university for Prime Ministers in waiting, and law or policy backgrounds remain the pre-Commons career of choice. Our most celebrated individuals are plucked from a tiny pool, and that doesn’t solely apply to politics. Look at our output of actors, judges, professors, and so on. Poshness is the default mode of power, which goes hand in hand with whiteness and masculinity. Those of us on the margins find new ways to explore this mysterious world that dominates all around us. There isn’t much that unites us as a society, but sex is pretty good for that.

Then again, it’s the non-sexual stuff that ends up being the most intriguing to me. When a politician or candidate is on our screens 24/7, pleading with the public to invest in their campaign and hand them the keys of power, there’s an inevitable hunger for the truth that accompanies it. The bigger the enigma, the greater the thirst for knowledge. During the 2012 Presidential campaign, there was a boom in popularity of Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan slash fiction. Finally, Mittens got to have a discernible personality.

Mitt Romney Paul Ryan.jpg

It’s the unspoken rule of fandom that you keep your shenanigans separate from the real world. Reporting on fandom and its activities tends to be misguided at best and scornful at worst, especially when written by tourists. Your imagination is your own and it’s unpleasant to see it be interrogated, regardless of your interest. Real life has also begun to infringe on fandom in different ways: When the system itself has moved beyond parody, the media reporting on it can’t decide whether to be All the President’s Men or a bastardized emoji board. Even respected journalists crack shipping jokes, tweet the memes and adopt the vernacular of teen girls the world over. Even the President gets into social media squabbles. It’s a decidedly different experience to see the insular ecosystem of fandom become the language of journalism. Why read a House of Cards AU fic when everything happening in real time is far more bizarre? Fandom’s good at keeping ahead of the curve though. Ted Cruz may be the Zodiac Killer, but the fan-fic about that is priceless.

Now, things are shifting. The coalition is gone, we have a minority Conservative government at the feet of Northern Ireland’s DUP in a futile attempt to keep power, and the Labour left have revitalized the youth vote. Across the pond, the joke of Trump has long since stopped being funny, but the tools of fandom remain sturdy. Right now, the most popular political fan-fiction involving Americans centres on the Clintons — the maligned dynasty of the centre-left have found a new audience seeking narratives of passion, power and optimism (it’s still pretty rare to see a heterosexual pair, and a long-time married one at that, dominate any fandom). There’s obvious humour to be found in the set-up to one fic, where Robert Mueller and James Comey engage in phone sex, but the meat of the tale itself is oddly sweet. Putin fucks Trump, obviously, and it’s in these moments where you appreciate fandom as a satirical power. A rather blunt one, but effective nonetheless, perhaps because the execution is so earnest and you can see the hard work that went into it. Who wouldn’t find that better than a staid political cartoon? It’ll surprise nobody that the Jon duo of Pod Save America have their fans, which I imagine they’d find entertaining. I can’t help but find comfort in a fandom that creates the perfect fictional partner for Huma Abedin. She deserves it.

«Love Trumps Hate» is the new t-shirt slogan of the resistance age, but it’s long been a rallying cry for the fandom world. Those maligned tools of cultural enthusiasm, wielded primarily by young women, have been put to good use in ways that intrigue some and baffle others. When the world is as confusing as it is these days, fan-fiction makes a depressing amount of sense.

Of course, sometimes the world just makes it very easy for them.

Emmanuel Macron Justin Trudeau.jpg

Pajiba

1 2 3 7