- Harry Styles made history as Vogue’s first-ever solo male cover star with a photoshoot that featured the singer in dresses and skirts.
- Conservative commentator Candace Owens criticized the outfits, saying, “There is no society that can survive without strong men,” and “Bring back manly men,” among other comments.
- Her remarks were slammed by Styles’ fans as well as fellow stars like actress Olivia Wilde. However, others like Ben Shapiro agreed with Owens’ sentiments.
- After becoming a trending Twitter topic, Owens doubled down and added, “Terms like “toxic masculinity”, were created by toxic females. Real women don’t do fake feminism.”
Harry Styles’ Views on Fashion
Conservative commentator Candace Owens is facing backlash after criticizing singer Harry Styles for wearing dresses in his Vogue photoshoot.
Styles made history this month by becoming Vogue’s first-ever solo male cover star, and in his shoot with the fashion magazine, he wore a range of
dresses, kilts, and skirts.
In that Vogue interview, Styles also talked about other musicians he looked up to who were style icons like Prince, Freddy Mercury, and Elton John, then explained his own views on fashion.
“Clothes are there to have fun with and experiment with and play with. What’s really exciting is that all of these lines are just kind of crumbling away,” he said.
“When you take away ‘There’s clothes for men and there’s clothes for women,’ once you remove any barriers, obviously you open up the arena in which you can play. I’ll go in shops sometimes, and I just find myself looking at the women’s clothes thinking they’re amazing,” he continued.
“It’s like anything—anytime you’re putting barriers up in your own life, you’re just limiting yourself. There’s so much joy to be had in playing with clothes. I’ve never really thought too much about what it means—it just becomes this extended part of creating something.”
What Candace Owens Said
However, his wardrobe choices were met with some criticism from conservative figures like Owens, who tweeted Saturday: “There is no society that can survive without strong men. The East knows this. In the west, the steady feminization of our men at the same time that Marxism is being taught to our children is not a coincidence.
“It is an outright attack,” she added. “Bring back manly men.”
Her comments eventually made her a trending topic on Twitter, with Styles’ fans coming to his defense.
The singer also saw support from people like actress Olivia Wilde, who responded to Owens by calling her “pathetic.”
“Imagine thinking a man isn’t “strong” because he can express a more feminine side. people who freak out over things like this are so strange,” YouTuber Ricky Dillon chimed in.
Despite the backlash, Owens doubled down Monday morning.
“Since I’m trending I’d like to clarify what I meant when I said “bring back manly men,” she began.
“I meant: Bring back manly men. Terms like “toxic masculinity”, were created by toxic females. Real women don’t do fake feminism. Sorry I’m not sorry.”
She also received support from fellow conservatives like Ben Shapiro.
Fans and supporters of Styles have continued to hit back against Owen’s remarks in the hours since her response.
U.K. Wants Netflix to Add ‘Fiction’ Label to “The Crown”
- The U.K. government is set to formally ask Netflix to attach a label to its series “The Crown” that clearly marks it as fiction.
- The government is concerned viewers may take the events as fact when the show is a historical drama.
- The request comes after Netflix released the fourth season of the show in mid-November, which covers Margaret Thatcher’s time as Prime Minister, the Falklands War, and the Royal family’s tumultuous relationship with Princess Diana.
- Netflix has attached other labels in the past when covering topics such as mental health, even when the depicted content is fictional.
- There are also concerns that show writer Peter Morgan has laid out events in a way that could push conspiracy theories, such as those around Princess Diana’s death.
The Crown Ruffles U.K. Feathers
The United Kingdom says it will formally ask Netflix to place a fiction label on its popular series “The Crown.”
The show’s fourth season released in mid-November and has already ruffled feathers in the U.K. In an interview with The Daily Mail on Sunday, U.K. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden confirmed rumors that the government was seeking such a label.
“It’s a beautifully produced work of fiction, so as with other TV productions, Netflix should be very clear at the beginning it is just that,” he said.
“Without this, I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact.”
Many are concerned that scenes depicted by show writer Peter Morgan feed into conspiracy theories about the royal family. Those conspiracy theories largely circulate around Princess Diana, who was introduced in the show this season.
Princess Diana was a polarizing figure in the royal family. She married Prince Charles in 1981 and was seen as a “modernizing” figure for the royal family. She infamously died in a car crash that has spawned many conspiracy theories about who was responsible.
Even without the theories tying her death to the Royal family, her struggle with her royal in-laws never helped the family’s image.
Fact or Fiction?
A warning label on the show, even on season 4, isn’t completely unheard of. A few episodes delve into Diana’s struggle with bulimia and have health warnings clearly shown before those episodes.
“Those were difficult scenes to film and I also feel like taking her to that place was a good thing,” Emma Corrin, who portrays Princess Diana, told Variety over the weekend.
“It gave me somewhere to go with her, but I was exhausted a lot those days coming off set because at the same time as you’re playing someone who’s fictionalized and obviously you’re not feeling or thinking those things, it’s your job to make yourself feel that way,” she added.
There are also pushes to affix a fictional label to the show by members of Diana’s family. Her brother, the Earl Spencer, told ITV, “It would help The Crown [the show] an enormous amount if at the beginning of each episode it stated that, ‘This isn’t true but is based around some real events’. Because then everyone would understand it’s drama for drama’s sake.”
Regarding the show’s fictionality, Corrin told talk show host Tamron Hall,“I think for everyone in “The Crown,” we always try and remind everyone that… the series we are in is fictionalized to a great extent.”
“Obviously it has its roots in reality and in some fact but Peter Morgan’s scripts are works of fiction.”
However, Morgan’s stance on fiction blurs the line a little. In the past, Morgan has defended his approach to the show, commenting, “You sometimes have to forsake accuracy, but you must never forsake truth.”
For critics, that thought process can lead to misrepresentations of what happened for the sake of a spun narrative. For example, in season 4 there’s a scene where Princess Diana is distressed and alone in her bedroom when Prince Philip, her father-in-law, approaches and asks what’s wrong.
She tells him she just wants to get away and he makes it clear that it won’t end well if she does. Diana replies, “I hope that isn’t a threat, Sir.”
Critics of the show claim this line is a way to foreshadow Diana’s death and a subtle nod to the theory that the Royals orchestrated her death.
In 1999, French police debunked that claim and put sole responsibility for the crash on her driver, who they claim was intoxicated at the time of the accident. Otherwise, the media and paparazzi are criticized for following her life so closely, particularly on the night of her death, prompting her driver to speed away dangerously.
Netflix has yet to make any comments about the U.K.’s looming request.
See What Others Are Saying: (Variety) (Radio Times) (Vulture)
South Korea Postpones BTS’ Mandatory Military Service for Two Years
- On Tuesday, South Korea’s Parliament approved a revision to the country’s Military Service Act, granting a two-year military conscription deferral for BTS’ oldest member, Jin.
- Jin turns 28 on Friday. Under normal requirements, all able-bodied South Korean men must join the country’s military by then, meaning Jin only had several days left to sign up.
- In fact, all seven BTS members will now be able to defer their military service period until the time they turn 30.
- The revision comes after a year-long debate over whether internationally successful male K-pop groups are influential enough to be granted tightly-regulated exemptions they normally would not be able to receive.
- BTS alone is estimated to account for $4.65 billion of South Korea’s Gross Domestic Product.
BTS Is Granted a Military Service Deferral
Kim Seok-jin, also known as Jin, is the oldest member of the global K-pop phenomenon BTS. On Friday, he’ll turn 28. While that news might not normally capture headlines, it coincided with his deadline to conscript in South Korea’s military — a prospect that held the potential to upheave the group’s ever-growing success.
On Tuesday, South Korea’s Parliament changed that deadline when it passed a revision to the country’s Military Service Act in a 270-2 vote. Now, top K-pop performers can postpone their conscription until they turn 30, meaning BTS will be able to remain fully intact for the next two years.
K-pop stars will only be eligible for the deferral if they have received government medals for helping to spread South Korea’s cultural influence internationally. Notably, all seven members of BTS have met that requirement because they all received such medals in 2018.
The legislation was introduced in South Korea’s parliament in September, shortly after BTS became the first K-pop group to reach No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 for “Dynamite.”
At the time, Representative Jeon Yong-gi argued that top pop stars — including BTS — should receive the deferral if they have raised the country’s national prestige.
Another lawmaker argued that BTS should be able to receive a full exemption. Currently, such exemptions are extremely rare, and only a few hundred have been handed out since 2008. Even then, they usually only go to classical musicians or athletes who’ve won medals in the Olympic or Asian Games. They’ve never been granted to any pop stars.
“There was a football player who was offered an exemption by playing for just four minutes at the 2014 London Olympics,” that lawmaker, Rep. Yoon Sang-hyun, wrote on social media, arguing that BTS’ success and economic effect outweighed that event.
BTS and the Debate Over Military Exemptions
The debate over a possible military exemption for BTS has been raging for more than a year now.
In September 2019, South Korea’s Ministry of National Defense said such an exemption was not possible.
In October of that same year, Noh Hyeong-ouk, the country’s Minister of Government Policy Coordination, said South Korea’s mandatory conscription system should reflect the current times.
“We need to review the need for an open-door policy regarding special exceptions from military service in the K-pop industry, in order to provide motives for Korea’s expansion as a cultural content powerhouse,” he argued.
That back and forth continued until November 2019 when the Ministry of National Defense seemed to put the speculation to rest by saying that BTS will still be required to conscript. Alongside that, it also imposed stricter rules on granting exemptions at all.
That decision was made, in part, because of a declining birthrate in South Korea. Currently, South Korea has about 600,000 active soldiers but by 2022, it projects that number will fall to 500,000. Over the next two decades, the ministry expects that number to shrink again by half. Low numbers like that could impede the country’s ability to continue imposing pressure on North Korea.
According to South Korean law, all able-bodied men must conscript in the country’s military by the time they turn 28. They must then serve at least 18 months or risk a number of repercussions, including being barred from international travel — a not so good prospect for a world-famous pop group.
On Monday, BTS made further history as their new single, “Life Goes On,” became the first Korean-language song to top the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. In 2019, The Hollywood Reporter estimated that BTS accounted for a jawdropping $4.65 billion of South Korea’s GDP.
See what others are saying: (The New York Times) (CBS News) (Reuters)
COVID-19 Testing Site in L.A. Will No Longer Close to Film “She’s All That” Reboot
- Over 500 Los Angeles residents had their Tuesday COVID-19 tests at Union Station abruptly canceled to accommodate for the filming of Miramax’s “She’s All That” reboot, “He’s All That.”
- Many slammed the city for seemingly prioritizing the filming over public health in the midst of its new stay at home order and spiking cases. The move would have also caused a back up in scheduled and rescheduled tests over the weekend, especially after the Thanksgiving holiday, when many are requesting tests.
- Miramax, the mayor’s office, and the group that approved the film permit said they were unaware it would impact testing. The decision to close was instead made by the nationwide testing organization Curative, which felt it would be difficult to allow both safely.
- Just after midnight, Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that testing would remain open, though it’s unclear if any people who had appointments missed that late-night update.
Mayor Keeps Testing Site Open
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said COVID-19 testing at Union Station would remain open Tuesday despite a previous and abrupt closure notice that was made to accommodate filming for Miramax’s “She’s All That” reboot.
“The 504 Angelenos who were scheduled for a test there can visit the kiosk as originally planned or any of the other 14 City sites, where we offer 38K tests daily,” Garcetti tweeted just after midnight on Monday,
The announcement came after hours of confusion and backlash from local residents who were scheduled for tests Tuesday. They each received an email Monday afternoon notifying them that their tests had been canceled because Union Station would be closed.
Instead, they were told the city would honor their testing appointments at all of its other testing sites without needing to make a new appointment.
They could also visit Union Station for a test at any time on a different day.
However, as for why the station would be closed, Deadline reported that the decision was made to accommodate a film shoot for “He’s All That,” a film starring faces like Addison Rae and Tanner Buchanan.
That meant a cast and crew of around 170 people would instead occupy the location.
The decision prompted much frustration because while some people could easily go to another testing site, not everyone could. Union Station is actually one of few transit-accessible testing centers. This kind of change would also lead to a back up in scheduled and rescheduled tests over the weekend.
The news also comes at a time when public health should be a top priority as coronavirus cases surge. In fact, the city had just been put under a modified stay at home order that started Monday because of the spike in cases and hospitalizations. According to some experts, rising cases could overwhelm the local healthcare system in less than two weeks.
As the day continued, outlets began reporting that no one from the mayor’s office, Miramax, or FilmLA (the body that approves filming permits) made the decision to cancel testing.
In fact, Miramax and FilmLA said they didn’t even know the station was a testing center, according to Deadline. Instead, the outlet reported that the decision was made by a nationwide testing organization known as Curative.
That group apparently felt it would be too disruptive and difficult to enforce social distancing with both testing and filming happening at the same time, but after seeing backlash over the decision, reps for the film reportedly offered to work with the station to figure out a way to accommodate both.
One source told the Los Angeles Times that the scheduled filming will not take place near the testing kiosks.
Later in the evening, Mayor Garcetti made a statement saying he was hoping to reopen Union Station, prompting more late-night confusion.
By 10 p.m. Monday evening, it was still unclear if the site would be open or closed the following today.
Garcetti finally cleared up question with his announcement that testing would continue without issue. According to several reports, filming will continue as well. However, its unclear right now how many people missed the overnight update and potentially missed their appointments because of all the back and forth.