Katy Barnes

The Names You Know and the Stories You Don’t

Photo by Zoe Hall As many colleges have begun deliberations on whether to change the names of their buildings, Montevallo is right in the middle of their own discussion on the history of many of the buildings on campus. It initially came to the University’s attention through a petition started by UM alumna Samantha Pullen. The petition’s initial intent was to get the name of Bibb Graves, a gymnasium and dance studio on campus, changed to something that better fits the University’s current beliefs.   This petition led to a renewed interest by both the University and the community to...

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“Trolls: World Tour” forces change in movie theater industry

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, many theaters have had to temporarily close their doors, causing many companies to find alternative methods for releasing their products. Movie studios have begun releasing their films straight to streaming websites, such as Amazon Prime or Disney +, and while the studios have found success, it has not been without controversy.  One of the first films to attempt this new style of distribution was “Trolls: World Tour,” the long-awaited sequel to 2016’s “Trolls.” It was initially projected to release on April 10, 2020, but due to the temporary closure of movie theaters, Universal instead made the decision to release in both theaters and various streaming platforms on the same day.  “Trolls: World Tour” was not the first film to have a pre-mature release onto streaming websites in the early 2020 season. Warner Brother’s “Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn),” Disney’s “Onward” and Paramount’s “Sonic the Hedgehog” all were released to various streaming sites due to COVID-19, but they all enjoyed a theatrical release before making the jump. The simultaneous release of “Trolls: World Tour” has been a controversial decision, and not one that theaters are taking lightly.  On April 28, AMC declared that they would no longer show Universal Studio’s films in their theaters. On April 29, Cineworld released a statement that they would begin to pull films that failed to respect the theatrical window of...

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Television Shows to Social Distance To

We’re on week four of quarantine and for many, our watchlists have begun to dwindle to nothing. There are only so many times one can watch “The Good Place” before it gets redundant. So, here’s a list of television shows that you might not have heard of, but will fill the void in your schedule until the next season of “Love is Blind” comes out on Netflix.  “Dramaworld” (Available on Netflix)  In this original drama, 20-year-old Claire Duncan’s life is dull as can be. Going from college to her work in her dad’s sub shop, the only thing she really cares about is Korean Dramas. Due to some unexplained shenanigans, she ends up in the world of Korean Drama where she is expected to help the two leads end up together by the end of the drama. It’s a heartwarming comedy, subverting some tropes while playing into others, and the story takes an interesting turn midseason that keeps the watcher guessing as to what will happen next. There are 10 episodes, about 15 minutes each so you can set aside an afternoon to knock this one out.  “Rilakkuma and Kaoru”   Available on Netflix  “Rilakkuma and Kaoru” is a Netflix original series about a year in the life of Kaoru. She’s an average 30-something with average young adult problems – the only difference is her roommates are bears. They teach her valuable lessons about navigating the world...

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Harley Quinn and the Fantabulous world she’s created

In 2016, DC released “Suicide Squad” in hopes that it would be the start they needed to help kickstart their own cinematic universe. Unfortunately, it was received poorly in the box office, and the spinoffs planned for it were all quickly shelved. Cited by many as being problematic and grim, it was a surprise when DC announced they were releasing a sequel focused on Margot Robbie’s character in the film, Harley Quinn.  “Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey” released on Feb. 7 of this year, and unlike its predecessor it seems to understand a healthy mix of serious and seriously fun.   The story focuses on the titular Harley Quinn’s struggle of discovering who she is outside of the Joker’s influence.   Through a handful of very large coincidences she meets the other stars of the film, the Birds of Prey. This team is made up of Renee Montoya, Helena Bertinelli and Dinah Lance, whose paths all cross when they set out to save a young pickpocket from being killed by a villain known as the Black Mask.   Starting with the very first scene, “Birds of Prey” shows that despite its R rating it’s inspired more so from Shazam’s imagery versus the dark and grim style of “Suicide Squad.” DC has discovered fun films sell much better, and so “Birds of Prey” isn’t afraid to allude to its comic book past, using color schemes that invoke comic book...

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What makes Christmas specials so special?

Traditions are the cornerstone of the December holidays, and without them, getting into the mood of the season would be much harder. From religious tradition, such as lighting the Menorah during Hanukah, to personal traditions, such as opening one present on Christmas Eve, they all have a special part in how we observe our holidays. For many, a crucial tradition in their household is watching holiday specials.  Between Freeform’s annual 25 Days of Christmas celebration and the various holiday specials you find within your favorite television show, it seems like there is an abundance of television to watch every December. From Ranken-Bass...

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