September & October | Favorites

TIA HERE with a slightly late duo-monthly favorites post. To excuse my lateness: I am currently in the craziest part of the semester in terms of papers/big projects/work/club activities, so finding a free hour for Duo Diaries has been a challenge. But you'll never find time if you don't make time! So here I am, making time.

MUSIC


Justin Bieber was never one of my favorites, but as of late, I've become a huge fan of his music, namely: "Sorry," "Where Are Ü Now," and "What Do You Mean." I'm seriously hooked. I've always thought the Biebs was a good singer, but I never cared much for his lyrics or sound. These new songs, though, tell a different story. I feel like his lyrics are more genuine now, and the embracing of the sorta unique electronic sound is doing him well.

Spring Awakening was my addiction last month. I know. I'm so late to the party. But what a tragic, angsty party it is. Lea Michele's voice is a little more understated in this musical than it is nowadays, which I think sounds nice, and Jonathon Groff is a perfect human being, so what else is new?

"Hotline Bling" is almost too obvious to mention. But I gotta go there. It's a great song. Got nothing else to say.

The Weeknd has also been a fave this month. He's got a really great sound, and I see him as almost a male counterpart to Lana Del Rey. They both instill their music with heavy emotion, and I love that about them.

Ariana Grande constantly entertains. I think her voice is really intriguing and I'm really into the recent music she's been putting out there. Can we talk about how much her latest music video looks K-pop inspired, though?

FILM


When Marnie Was There was the most striking film I saw in the past two months. I haven't had much time to see many other things (at least, not outside of a class context), but this one would stick in my mind even if I had watched a thousand films in the last 60 days. The protagonist really spoke to me, as did the character of Marnie, and the story combines powerful emotional turmoil and tragedy with beautiful Studio Ghibli art and their always-authentic, lyrical thoughtfulness.

Brokeback Mountain, directed by Ang Lee, is another thing I'm late to the party watching. I actually had to watch it for class (so I feel like I'm breaking an unspoken rule by bringing it up), but it was such a strong film that I had to mention it. The storyline definitely went on a different path than I expected it to, in terms of it spanning across years, but I was still intrigued (and a little weepy) from beginning to end. I also had no idea Anne Hathaway was in it. That was a bizarre surprise.

TELEVISION


Over the Garden Wall is my obsession in terms of television right now. It's a miniseries that came out last year on Cartoon Network, and seeks to create new, eerie fairy tales in an homage to an older style of animation. The characters are lovable (and sometimes cringeworthy—cough, Wirt's poetry, cough), the music is phenomenal and wonderfully stylized, and the story is creepy, compelling, and honest. While some of the conflicts in the show were resolved with almost unsatisfying ease, I'd say the best part of the miniseries is not so much the story but the aesthetic. It's the perfect fall show.

iZombie (on the CW and Netflix) from DC Comics is simply wonderful. Although the dialogue and jokes feel stilted at times, the characters are undeniably fun and the fictional universe is very creatively constructed. The show looks at zombies in a very unique way, and the performances of the main actors are strong enough to get you, as a viewer, invested in their lives (they aren't strong enough to save the awkward "funny" dialogue, though). If you're looking for something light and engaging, and you love a little sci-fi/fantasy/horror—this show is for you.

MISCELLANY


Coffee machine, oh what would I do without you? Seems obvious to own one, but I had yet to until September. It's simple and cheap and works with typical filter paper. I've tried three different coffee grounds: Maxwell House French Roast, Starbucks Espresso Roast, and Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce. The verdict? Starbucks sucks and should not be trusted. Maxwell House is great.


My TXF "Mulder It's Me" shirt from the Etsy shop, Totally Good Time. It's perfect, comfy, still in one piece, and fits me well as a size small (I think). The owner of the shop is also very professional (and yet, personal) with his clients and really patient! Thelonia, picture above, had some trouble with her order in terms of finding the right size, and the shop owner was accommodating and friendly throughout the exchange. He also regrams your Insta pictures, and gets your selfies lots of likes. Talk about a great guy!

And that's it for the past two months. I'll be back in November and December with another favorites post, but until then, I have a couple post ideas lined up that I would love to execute. For example, I dyed my hair slightly for Halloween and will be putting together a video review of my experience with the dye for those curious about it. Finally, something in the beauty tab of this blog!

That's it for now. See you next time!

For more, check out Tia's new blog!

Much love,

T.