Summer Favorites | Honeymoon, Broken Monsters, and Lemonade

TIA HERE with my summer favorites, covering everything I've been digging from May through August. Enjoy!

MUSIC


Hayley Kiyoko is a singer and songwriter who is best known for playing Velma in the live-action Scooby Doo movie (YES, that was her). But I've also found that I really dig her EP, This Side of Paradise. Her song "Girls Like Girls" has one of the most awesome music videos I've seen in a while, too, so I hope you check it out! Gotta support my fellow half-asians.

The Bird and the Bee are a music duo characterized by their '60s-inspired, indie pop style. Their songs are often drenched in quirk, and have a lovely, clear quality to them. I originally started listening to them because Mitch Grassi mentioned the song "Heard It On the Radio" in a Superfruit episode... And from then on out, I was hooked.

The upcoming Lana Del Rey album, Honeymoon, has been on my mind since forever as a hardcore Lana fan, but right now there are only three songs out: "High By the Beach," "Terrence Loves You," and "Honeymoon." My favorite, by far, is "High By the Beach," which kind of resonates through you like a slow, echoing heartbeat, and makes you want to spin around on the beach in flowing clothes with your hair down. The album comes out in full on September 18th of this year.

"Little White Lies" by Florrie came out of nowhere for me in my YouTube related videos, but I love it. The model/drummer turned singer brings a certain freshness to her music, like you're being thrust into an electronic, glitchy blizzard of beautiful sound. The tone of her voice is awesome and clear, and the song is just so catchy.

FILM



Overall, I've found the movies I've watched in the past few months pretty disappointing. I already wrote about Mad Max, which I liked, but since that one, I've only been met with mediocrity. Jurassic World felt a bit geared to make the female protagonist look ridiculous (which annoyed me) and the family elements were far too cheesy for me. The Virgin Suicides had that eerie, pretty suburban aesthetic, and Sofia Coppola is sort of interesting to me, but I didn't find the idea of it particularly novel. Maybe it was fresh and new at the time it came out, but for today's commentary and discussion of gender politics and sexual empowerment, this wasn't anything groundbreaking. I liked the movie, but to call it a favorite would be pushing the envelope.

Similarly, I felt Girl Most Likely was entertaining and the Kristen Wiig/Darren Criss dynamic was unexpectedly strong, but I wouldn't call the film a favorite either. Would I suggest you watch it on a day when you're bored and your dinner isn't interesting enough to hold your complete attention? Yeah, probably. But that's it. I also watched Mr. Nobody, which was interestingly confusing and made me want to understand what was going on, but ultimately left me feeling like I had come to expect too much of it. If you like watching movies that mess with your head and your understanding of reality, you may find that this one meets expectations nicely, but fails to surpass them or do anything that really surprises you. It's good but, as with the others, is no fave. That said, because I had no real film favorites these past few months, I thought I'd throw together my list of "eh" movies and let them serve as basically one good movie.

TELEVISION



The X-Files has become my life and soul in the past few weeks and it is by far my current favorite TV show. The plot is entertaining, the mystery intriguing, the '90s style of camerawork/lighting/clothing/everything so awful it becomes stupidly wonderful, and the characters perfectly full of life. It balances funny, gross, honest, and interesting in just the right way, with the chemistry between Mulder and Scully so palpable that I'm not sure I'm going to make it to season seven (when things actually begin happening, if you know what I mean... Well, I'll obviously make it there, but it will be a hard emotional journey). This show is my everything this month, and the best thing I've watched since Steven Universe.



Gilmore Girls was my obsession earlier this summer, and for good reason. The show has the best, quick dialogue, with super dynamic and fun characters that age at a realistic rate. If sci-fi isn't your jam, but family drama/comedy/romance is more down your alley, Gilmore Girls is a must-watch. I don't think I'll ever stop wanting to live in Stars Hollow.



Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp is a Netflix-exclusive, single season show, created as a companion piece to its (older) film counterpart. The show is incredibly stupid, packed with so many famous faces, and is just... so dumb... I can't even begin to tell you. But as far as stupid humor goes, this show totally nails it on the head and turns the cringeworthy into comedy. It's very funny, playing off summer camp movie tropes (if those even exist?), and feels like a bunch of celebrities and comedians came together just to mess around. Of course, it is much more deliberate than that, but it does feel inexplicably effortless in its genius stupidity.

BOOKS



After Dark was the most recent book I finished and you can check out my full review here. It's a surreal, quick read, perfect for late nights that drain into dizzy, early mornings.



Broken Monsters is the book I'm currently digging into. It's a gruesome murder mystery (minus most of the mystery?) that follows several different characters' points of view, including that of the murderer. The characters are all of different ages, races, economic status, etc., so the diverse cast is really what makes the book compelling. I'm only halfway through, so I'm not sure what exactly is going to happen in the second half of the book, but so far there has been no real twist and I am still waiting to be surprised. Gone Girl has totally messed with my expectations for murder mysteries, I think...

MISCELLANY




(Virgin, Organic) Coconut Oil is great for the skin and hair, or so I hear, and I've been using it accordingly! I don't mind the smell since it's just... coconut-y... so I've been lathering it on my hair every couple days and then washing it out. I'm not sure how much it actually helps, but it's definitely not doing nothing (double negative?), so I'm gonna keep doing it. I know. This DD favorites post is particularly inspired!



Simply Lemonade is incredibly addicting, and now that it comes in just about every flavor ever (mango, blueberry, raspberry, etc.), the potential is endless. It's all about testing the different flavors and figuring out which is your favorite (and isn't too sweet!). I'm a blueberry lemonade and limeade fan myself.



Patterned Tape is surprisingly useful. It can be used in so many unexpected and wonderful ways. I've been using it to label jars and pin boards, and have written quotes on it, then stuck it to my wall. You can also use it as normal tape (why?) or make any sort of stationary/notebook look infinitely more interesting.



Animal Crossing: New Leaf has once again entered significantly into my life. I'm determined to get to 10 million bells (I'm currently at 4 million!) so I can get all of the special gifts from the bank and pay off my mortgage. Sounds a bit too much like real life, right? (Minus the gifts from the bank, probably.) Somehow, ACNL manages to imitate real life and deviate from it completely in a way that's totally entertaining and a wonderful, positive experience.

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Much love,

T.