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  1. retrograde

    S06.E05: Public Shaming

    Monica Lewinsky is a really worthwhile Twitter follow if you enjoyed the interview. I was a kid in another country when the whole Clinton affair happened and didn't realize how much of the public narrative I'd just internalized unquestioningly via jokes in the media until she became a voice amid all the MeToo stuff. When I looked back on the whole thing with adult, 2018 eyes, it was a real gut punch. Also, although Lewinsky didn't participate in it personally, the second season of the podcast Slow Burn does a fantastic job probing and contextualizing the whole scandal, and includes many reporters and commentators from the time re-examining what they said about her at the time.
  2. retrograde

    Queer Eye

    I agree, although I will trust that his sister, who seemed great and very caring, knows him best and if she thinks he really needed a nudge, that he did. However, I did find the social situation with the anime club he was forced into a bit humiliating. I know they present these things as "These fun people just happen to be meeting here today and we brought our guy along to see if he can fit in." But really, the show surely either organizes the whole event or at the very least, must be telling everyone there first "We're trying to get this loner to interact with other humans so we'll be filming all your conversations with him today." I don't see how the setup can possibly improve your self esteem. He's not the only one who's had to do these awkward "adult play dates" either. They always seem uncomfortable for everyone involved. I far preferred seeing Thomas hang out in his actual (well, his sister's) social circle.
  3. retrograde

    Queer Eye

    From that Apartment Therapy interview: Wow, I really assumed the "week" on this show was a reality TV week, so more like several weeks. I know his makeovers are more cosmetic than structural, but still. Really enjoyed this season. Almost every episode I said, "Now this is the best episode of the season," only for it to be upstaged. In the end, I liked Jones Bar-B-Q and Jess the best, but there wasn't really a dud this season. My only complaint is that it seemed like some of Karamo's therapeutic metaphors have become a little too tortured. I felt embarrassed for Thomas having to knock down that "emotional wall." I realize just talking about your feelings may not make for such exciting TV, but still.
  4. retrograde


    Even the top quality home-use 3D printers tend to have misfires and be quite finicky, so I can't imagine this budget one is seamlessly creating toys without some hiccups. Still, I didn't understand the Sharks bowing out over the target demographic issue. If they thought it was too young, they could've just made broadening the scope part of the deal. There didn't seem to be anything about the product or software that inherently made it too young or simple for 8-13 year-olds (or whatever age they'd have preferred, I can't remember exactly). I can understand the logic of the savings site even if it seems counterintuitive. You don't need to give someone and iTunes gift card -- you could just give some cash -- but people often prefer to because if feels like a more thoughtful, real gift and it's also more fun for the receiver. I'd guess that if there's a specific page a kid's relatives can go to that outlines whatever they're saving for, the relatives will be more likely to actually participate in the fundraising campaign, and the kids are more likely to stay focused on their goal. Same reason GoFundMe pages etc are often more effective for raising money than just asking for cash.
  5. retrograde

    S06:09 Feat Socks NYC

    I don't think it's a millennial thing -- every generation has a variation on cocky, entitled, rich, white, male douchebags who cruise through life on easy mode and think it's because they're brilliant. I can just as easily see these hucksters on Wall Street in the 80s. I agree Marcus' convoluted plan (at least what we saw of it) made no sense and I had no idea WTF was going on most of the episode. But I do think his overall point was correct: the only thing they're actually good at is convincing people to buy crap on Instagram (and apparently, up until now, convincing suckers to invest in their unprofitable company), so they need to make that their business. They're not good entrepreneurs, and the socks will inevitably go out of style as they lose touch with the zeitgeist as everyone does. But if they can't use their social media selling abilities to shill products they don't personally love, they'll never turn it into a marketable skill.
  6. retrograde

    Masterchef (AU)

    Apparently they're filming this season in Queensland (the show has mostly been done in Melbourne, though the first few seasons were Sydney). Also Shannon Bennett is out as mentor, replaced by Poh, Matt Sinclair and Billie. I'm not really sure how much help Shannon was, but in so far as he brought anything to the table, it was wisdom from culinary expertise and experience that I'm not sure self-taught former contestants -- especially recent ones like Matt and Billie -- can really offer.
  7. retrograde


    Binged this over the weekend and really enjoyed it. I was around that age at that time, and though I didn't see myself in the main characters on a personality level, so much rang so true about the era and just generally being a 13 year old girl. I really appreciated that the kids (other than the leads of course) looked like actual 13 year olds in all their awkward glory instead of being played by impossibly attractive 16 year old models. The attention to detail on the fashion and hair was also amazing (Brendan showing up at the dance in a Limp Bizkit shirt and dog collar was so real) although I agree there weren't enough frosted tips. The early 2000s was a uniquely awful time for mainstream fashion, music and pop culture in general.
  8. retrograde

    My Kitchen Rules (AU)

    I have been watching in recent years of this show, but gave up in the first week of this one because I just couldn't handle the so-called homeschooled Christian brothers. I like a good villain, but I don't want to watch bigotry and their persona also seemed more contrived than usual. Is there enough redeeming about this season that it's worth trying to start again?
  9. retrograde

    Masterchef (AU)

    I see My Kitchen Rules has started. Masterchef usually starts right after MKR ends.
  10. retrograde

    S10.E12: Episode 12

    Hah no that's my point -- I think it's low in the scheme of wine prices, but probably around the price point the bougie millennials in those photos would think was fine for a casual afternoon with friends. (I do fully admit to spending a lot of money on wine myself, though).
  11. retrograde

    S10.E12: Episode 12

    I think there is a pretty sizable market of people who don't know much about wine and find it intimidating but would like to learn more, and I can see those people buying this wine to drink at home -- but I agree most people wouldn't want to be seen bringing it to a dinner party or when guests come around. The low price point ($18) and social media campaign suggests he's targeting millenials who would buy it for casual get-togethers with friends, which I can see.
  12. retrograde

    S10.E11: Episode 11

    Those dresses looked like something a cult would wear. Harry's, one of the larger subscription razor companies, already launched a women's spinoff brand (I was already using the men's one and have no reason to switch because razors are indeed all the same; at least they're charging the same price though), and there's also already a popular women-targeted company called Billie. "Our razors are pink!" doesn't seem a very strong point of difference, and the company's whole aesthetic looks really dated to me. I don't really wear makeup, but I really liked the makeup bag lady's presentation.
  13. retrograde

    S05.E02: Love Letters

    It's actually pretty common for robbers to indicate they have a gun in their jacket or pocket (I have to read a lot of police reports for work), and it's also common for their victims to err on the side of caution and hand over whatever they want rather than risk that it is a real gun. Of course, yeah, it became clear towards the end this guy probably didn't have a gun (though he could've had a holster) but in the real world I think the police would've still taken this seriously.
  14. retrograde

    S10.E09: Episode 9

    The kid selling the cold brew maker was a good hustler, but lying that people otherwise have to spend hundreds on machines. Even your local uber-hipster coffee shop is probably just using a Toddy, which costs like $35. The Sproing definitely looked not fun. Running on the spot sucks.
  15. retrograde

    AGT The Champions: All Episode Discussion

    You answered your own question: Australians luuurve cheese. That song, I'm sorry to say, was a big No. 1 hit (seven years ago, but still). Australia's Got Talent is also not one of the better reality competition shows in the country (even by the standard of Australian reality competition shows, which...) and doesn't attract that much, yknow, talent. A lot of kid singers and adult performers who pull on the heart strings more than they're actually good. This is really the only good thing to ever come out of it.