Around this time last year, we were getting over what we though was the worst year. 2017, while not quite the same dumpster fire that was 2016, still clearly had no interest in sparing us any unfortunate setbacks.
However, it wasn’t all bad.
Let’s a quick moment to forget about all the things that made us sad this year, from Trump (ew) to all the untimely deaths of our favorite celebrities. 2017 was definitely a big win for diversity, with entertainment like Hidden Figures, Moonlight, Get Out, Master of None, and Insecure all becoming media powerhouses. We can’t wait to see more of it in 2018.
However, some of the media that we’re most thankful for though resides right here, in this place that we call home, The Tempest. As we recall all our favorite pieces, we feel extremely blessed to be surrounded by such intelligent and fabulous women.
To us, 2017 represented a year of celebrating inclusion and how powerful diverse stories can be for mental health and self-image.
[bctt tweet=”Working with the fab Tempest team reminds us of all the things we love about the world.” username=”wearethetempest”]
In that spirit, let’s take a step back and look at all our favorite pieces from Pop Culture team this year and enter 2018 on the best note possible!
Jennifer Njoku’s picks:
1. “50 times #BlackOutEid flawlessly brought glow into our lives,” by Asma Elgamal
Seeing women that are normally marginalized in the media flourish on social media brings smiles to our heart. This piece byhighlights the importance of celebrating every woman in every shape and form.
It’s a fact: #BlackOutEid is amazing and incredibly important. Read More.
2. “When Hasan Minhaj changed the world with his viral special “Homecoming King,'” by Shajia Abidi
Hasan Minhaj is a big name when it comes to comedy. He is a breath of fresh air to watch on The Daily Show. This special was important because he showed us a different and vulnerable side to him, that we totally relate to.
‘Homecoming King’ tells stories about his coming of age as a Muslim-American in a predominately white community, which Read More.addresses in this piece.
3. “Netflix’s ‘Dear White People’ perfectly illustrated why white students don’t need their own safe spaces on campus,” by Ameerah Sanders
Netflix’s DWP is revolutionary and incredibly needed in these turbulent times. This piece byRead More.perfectly illustrates why saying that white students need their own safe spaces is incredibly inconsiderate to the experiences that most black students have on campus.
4. “Eliyannah Amirah Yisrael talks about her new web series, ‘Hermione and the Quarter Life Crisis,’” by Katherine Kaestner
When we talk about the importance of diversity and inclusion in the entertainment industry, we think of the struggles that fan fiction writers often face. This interview bywith Eliyannah Amirah Yisrael shows how important it is to celebrate diverse writers in every sense of the word.
Her story is so wonderfully creative, and we can’t help but adore it. Read More.
5. “The future of women in Hollywood needs be more inclusive in the future if we’re going to call it feminist,” by Mirelle Tinker
When we talk about diversity and inclusion in the entertainment industry, it’s hard not to think of the lack of it in Hollywood. #OscarsSoWhite seriously addressed this problem. Read More.points out big names like Ava DuVernay and Oprah Winfrey in this category but this needs to be expanded in 2018 if we’re gonna get to where we need to be.
Shanicka Anderson’s picks:
6. The Hollywood sexual assault scandal hit a little too close to home for our writer, Grace Carini.
In the last few months, being on social media has been especially exhausting. With each new day comes a new scandal. A new man whose sexually predatory behavior is exposed. It is almost easy to be a bit numb and desensitized.
However, for me, editing this piece helped make it all real again.
Sexual assault happens at every level of fame. Both to common folk and to household names. This piece helped remind me that no matter how overwhelming the news, it’s never okay to normalize these situations. Read More.
7. When our writer, Samantha Puc, had to call out Matthew Daddario, an actor on one of her favorite shows.
Being a fan of anything (books, movies, television, sports) means having to come to terms with the facts that sometimes your faves are gonna fuck up. It sucks but as we are forced to learn time and time again, no human is infallible.
Nothing drove this point home more than when during a livestream hosted by Matthew Daddario, fellow co-star Dominic Sherwood dropped the f-word slur. Instead of correcting Sherwood immediately, Daddario immediately ran off camera and shut down the stream. Both have since apologized but the whole incident has still left me with a sour taste in my mouth. Read More.
8. When Jesse Lacey from Brand New was exposed as a predator and ruined my childhood.
Not going to lie, this was a rough one. It is still a rough one.
It’s been months and I’m still trying to work through the anger and betrayal. The Hollywood sexual assault scandal emboldened a few brave women to come forward and name Jesse Lacey as their abuser and my world was totally rocked. There’s a special place in hell for men who take advantage of young women to adore and admire them. Read More.
9. When our writer, Lauren Jones, decided to take a stand against the glorification of binge-watching culture.
Listen, I love my Netflix account. I have spent precious hours snuggled up in bed with nothing but episodes of Friday Night Lights to pass the time. Watching television is truly one of my favorite past times. But this piece reminded me that that’s not the case for everyone.
Reading is fundamental and it is just as immersive. I can and should get lost in the world of books just as often as the world of television. I’m making a promise to do a bit more of that in 2018. Read More.
10. When I was introduced to BTS, the biggest boy band in the world right now, by Arushi Tandon.
When I edited this piece, I’ll be honest, I knew very little about BTS. I knew they were poised for world domination but I had never heard a song or watch a video. I edited this piece feeling totally impressed with all of their stats and by the passionate fans but…I still hadn’t taken the plunge.
However, fast forward a few months and several dozen videos later and I am now a total BTS stan. I am so proud of this piece and our decision to showcase these talented boys over here in the pop culture section. Read More.
All in all, this was truly a year full of unforgettable stories in the world of pop culture. We are both so grateful to be given the chance to cover them. Here’s to another great year!