Luke Perry Redefined Cool and Slayed My Heart

“I always felt like something of an outsider, but I identified with people on the screen.” –Luke Perry

Hearts didn’t just stop at the sight of Luke Perry; they doubled, at least for this writer. As a young and easily confused six-year-old, seeing Dylan McKay show up on the third episode of Fox’s Beverly Hills 90210 was confounding. Here was this loner, this rebel, this real James Dean type, who was a complete juxtaposition from the rest of the hunks — from Jason Priestley’s kindhearted braniac Brandon Walsh to Ian Ziering’s insufferable Steve Sanders. He defined “slacker chic”: he was effeminate, he wore his heart on his sleeve, and he won over the coolest of the West Beverly girls.

It was an instant first sell, too. When we first meet Dylan, he’s literally surrounded by bolts of electricity as he slinks out of the shadows of West Beverly’s computer lab. From there, he scares off two jocks, gets Brandon to cut school, cruises around in a vintage Porsche convertible with a copy of Byron, surfs the big waves, breaks the big boards, and orders hamburgers in his millionaire father’s hotel suite with some Beverly babes. Though, as we all learn by the end of the episode, there’s more than meets the eye to this bad boy. He’s not only a rebel with a heart, but a rebel with a curse.

I was hooked. It was an overnight crush. It was an obsession I couldn’t contain. I wanted his haircut. I wanted his jacket. I wanted everything about him. I bought folders and pencils with his mug on ’em. I collected 90210 trading cards and kept the ones with Dylan and Brenda on my dresser. I begged my parents to drive me from toy store to toy store to find the Dylan and Brenda dolls. Even now, I vividly remember pacing around the outfield at tee-ball practice, hoping and praying that Kay-Bee would have either later that evening. They didn’t. Never found ’em. There were tears.

Luke Perry, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Luke Perry in Buffy the Vampire Slayer (20th Century Fox)

That didn’t matter, though, because my interest went well beyond Dylan and 90210, a notion that became quite obvious years later upon seeing Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer. As Pike, Perry played another slacker, only one that didn’t have any answers. Instead, he’s a total fuckup who gets by on being a scrappy smart ass, mostly deferring to Kristy Swanson’s titular lead. That role reversal, coupled with his fly-on-the-wall sense of humor, staked me right through the heart with blissful and dizzying results. He was cool without even trying.

Yet, that wasn’t too far from the truth. Like Dylan or Pike, Perry never appeared as if he were trying to be anything; he just simply let things be. “I’m not James Dean, and no one else is, either,” he once said, sounding less like a movie star and more like, say, Joe Strummer or Johnny Cash. And much like those two, he walked around with a laissez faire attitude, dangling his currency of cool in the same way a cigarette might often roll around his pursed lips. Be it on screen or off, he was always this enigmatic figure, and I never stopped caring.

Much of the latter half of his career is a testament to that. I’ve yet to sit through an entire episode of Riverdale, but knowing that he was a part of it at the very least had me intrigued. The same goes for his past projects throughout the aughts, be it Showtime’s Jeremiah or HBO’s short-lived (and cruelly underrated) John From Cincinnati. If his name appeared, there was a jolt of excitement. Hell, I remember guffawing in the theater when he popped up in the opening scenes of Luc Besson’s sci-fi masterpiece The Fifth Element.

90210, Luke Perry, Shannon Doherty

Luke Perry and Shannon Doherty in 90210

It feels opportunistic to discuss these feelings on the day of Perry’s death, that much I admit, but his untimely passing has stunned me in indescribable ways. I’ve written a lot of obituaries at Consequence of Sound, and shed many tears over a number of them, but very few have left me in a daze like this. In fact, when the news hit last week that Perry had suffered a severe and dangerous stroke, I couldn’t bring myself to pre-draft the copy, even if I knew that the chances of him passing were very, very high. It just hurt too much.

As maudlin as that sounds, it’s not without reason. For years, I simply wrote off my adoration for Perry as hero worship, akin to my love for Spider-Man or Axel Foley, but if I’m being honest, he meant so much more than that to me than that. Because really, I wasn’t just attracted to his style or his attitude or his swagger. I was also attracted to him, and realizing that — god knows how many years ago now — was such a comforting revelation in my life. It was a revelation that came without fear, without confusion, and without any sense of ceremony. It just was. It was me at my most cool, and I’ve gotta appreciate that.


Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

Donald Glover and Glassnote Records Settle Childish Gambino Royalties Dispute

In September 2018, Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino) filed a lawsuit against his former label Glassnote Records due to an ongoing royalties dispute between the two parties. Now, Glover and Glassnote have settled the dispute, Variety reports and Pitchfork can confirm.

The 2018 lawsuit claimed that Glassnote owed Glover upwards of $10,000 in streaming royalties. It also stated that the independent record label had been miscalculating payments in breach of their licensing agreement. The allegations outlined in the suit included breaches of contract, good faith, fair dealing, and fiduciary duty, as well as negligence.

Glover’s legal action was in response to a July 2018 complaint filed by Glassnote that requested a judge to mediate their contract dispute with Glover in court. “Donald Glover made a claim that he was owed 95% of SoundExchange royalties when we are legislatively and contractually required to share those royalties 50/45,” a Glassnote representative told Pitchfork earlier that year. “We are not asking for anything back from Donald Glover, just that we are able to retain the monies that are contractually and legally ours and that have already been paid to us.”

Now, according to a stipulation of voluntary dismissal filed on Friday (March 1) in the New York Southern District Court, both parties have agreed to drop the dispute.

Glover released three albums on Glassnote between 2011 and 2016 (Camp, Because the Internet, and “Awaken, My Love!”). In January 2018, it was announced that he had signed a deal with RCA.

Pitchfork has reached out to representatives for Glover and Glassnote for comment.

Read “What Does Atlanta Hip-Hop Think of ‘Atlanta’ the Show?” on the Pitch.

Pitchfork RSS Feed

Steven Spielberg wants more rules for Netflix to win Oscars

This year’s Oscars was a big deal for Netflix.

With Alfonso Cuaron nabbing Best Director for Roma, the streaming giant is essentially one level removed from a Best Picture win, which is quite a feat for their original content. Most have celebrated this progress, but others aren’t so happy.

Among them is Steven Spielberg, who’s sounding a lot like Shooter McGavin these days, essentially running around The Academy saying, “Yeah, yeah, everyone seems to be coming around … Well, I’m not, Dawn!”

Prior to the Oscars, Spielberg made a not-so-subtle jab at streaming services while accepting the Filmmaker Award at the Cinema Audio Society’s CAS Awards for last year’s Ready Player One. As he explained:

“I don’t believe that films that are just given token qualifications, in a couple of theaters for less than a week, should qualify for the Academy Award nominations. Fewer and fewer filmmakers are going to struggle to raise money, or to compete at Sundance and possibly get one of the specialty labels to release their films theatrically. And more of them are going to let the SVOD [Streaming Video On-Demand] businesses finance their films, maybe with the promise of a slight, one-week theatrical window to qualify for awards But, in fact, once you commit to a television format, you’re a TV movie.”

Granted, he contended that some of the greatest writing, directing, and performances are on TV, but ultimately conceded that “there’s nothing like going to a big dark theatre with people you’ve never met before and having the experience wash over you. That’s something we all truly believe in.”

(Ranking: Every Steven Spielberg Movie from Worst to Best)

That belief, as Indiewire reports, could actually affect the Oscars. As the Academy Governor representing the directors branch, Spielberg could have his say when the Academy soon convenes, and that appears to be the case based on recent statements by his company Amblin.

“Steven feels strongly about the difference between the streaming and theatrical situation. He’ll be happy if the others will join [his campaign] when that comes up [at the Academy Board of Governors meeting]. He will see what happens.”

The Academy has since confirmed the notion, adding, “Awards rules discussions are ongoing with the branches. And the Board will likely consider the topic at the April meeting.”

Spielberg is hardly alone, either. “There’s a growing sense that if [Netflix] is going to behave like a studio, there should be some sort of standard,” said one Academy governor. “The rules were put into effect when no one could conceive of this present or this future. We need a little clarity.”

(Read: 2019 Academy Award Winners: The Complete List)

While most of the argument lies in theatrical distribution — the Academy currently only requires one week of exclusive theatrical play — many studios and distributors are upset with Netflix’s marketing. They reportedly spent between $25 to $50 million in Oscar marketing, which is quite a hike from the paltry $5 million that Universal spent. What’s more, they argue the marketing isn’t spent on pushing viewers to theaters.

All of this should be a concern to Netflix (and any other streaming giants, for that matter). Already, they’re looking forward to 2020, what with Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman dropping later this fall, and it’s very likely they’ll have new stipulations to hurdle over come awards season.

Again, for perspective…

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

New trailer for X-Men: Dark Phoenix gets furious: Watch

With the forthcoming Disney-Fox merge, the X-Men franchise — at least as it exists right now — remains in flux. As we learned earlier this month from producer Lauren Shuler Donner, it’s likely that X-Men: Dark Phoenix may very well be the last rodeo in the long-running X-Men universe.

If so, it’s fitting then that the much-delayed follow-up to 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse serves as a complete redo of 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand, arguably the worst entry in the series and one that completely botched the Phoenix storyline.

Similar to the first trailer from this past September, this new one proves Jean Grey’s (Sophie Turner) epic chapter will finally be told the right way, which should give fans solace as those Cerebro doors close for potentially the last time.

Watch below and also consult the swanky new poster shortly after.

James McAvoy (Professor X), Michael Fassbender (Magneto), Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique), Nicholas Hoult (Beast), Kodi Smit-McPhee (Nightcrawler), Tye Sheridan (Cyclops), and Alexandra Shipp (Storm) all return to the save the day. Joining them is Jessica Chastain as a mysterious shapeshifter.

Simon Kinberg serves as writer and director, while composer Hans Zimmer will score the damn thing.

Dark Phoenix lands June 7th via Fox.

new x men poster dark phoenix 1200 1900 81 s New trailer for X Men: Dark Phoenix gets furious: Watch

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

Queen and Adam Lambert Announce New Documentary The Show Must Go On

Queen have announced a new documentary called The Show Must Go On: The Queen + Adam Lambert Story. Since 2011, the band’s founding members Brian May and Roger Taylor have been touring with Lambert as Queen + Adam Lambert. The two-hour documentary features behind-the-scenes concert footage from their time working together. It also follows Lambert’s career since his 2009 “American Idol” performance with Queen and includes interviews with May, Taylor, Simon Cowell, Bohemian Rhapsody’s Rami Malek, and more.

Queen and Lambert will be touring North America starting this summer—see their full itinerary. Queen and Lambert opened last night’s 2019 Oscars with a performance of “We Will Rock You” and “We Are the Champions.” Bohemian Rhapsody—the biopic about Queen’s late frontman Freddie Mercury—took home four Academy Awards, including Malek’s Best Actor win, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Film Editing. It was up for Best Picture, but lost to Green Book.

Read Pitchfork’s “Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody Is Now the Biggest Music Biopic Ever. It’s Also Total Bullshit.”

Pitchfork RSS Feed

Terry Gilliam’s The Man Who Killed Don Quixote finally gets a release date, and it’s for one night only

Terry Gilliam can finally sleep at night.

After being pushed and pulled out of development hell for decades, the veteran filmmaker’s stroke-inducing passion project The Man Who Killed Don Quixote will finally hit theaters on April 10th for a one-night special event. Tickets can be purchased via Fathom Events.

If you recall, the Chinese Democracy film equivalent stars Adam Driver and Jonathan Pryce in a wild and zany adventure that likely won’t come close to its sordid production history that’s already been well documented (see: 2002’s Lost in La Mancha).

Even so, we’re beyond stoked to finally see the damn thing, and that one-night only release only adds to its mythical status. Catch a new trailer for the film below and read its official synopsis shortly after.

Toby, a cynical advertising director, finds himself trapped in the outrageous delusions of an old Spanish shoe-maker who believes himself to be Don Quixote. In the course of their comic and increasingly surreal adventures, Toby is forced to confront the tragic repercussions of a film he made in his idealistic youth – a film that changed the hopes and dreams of a small Spanish village forever. Can Toby make amends and regain his humanity? Can Don Quixote survive his madness and imminent death? Or will love conquer all?

Whether or not Don Quixote receives additional distribution in the US remains to be seen. Last year, amidst legal challenges from Gilliam’s ex-production partners, Amazon pulled out of its agreement for US distribution of the film,

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

Karl Lagerfeld’s cat, Choupette, inherits portion of fashion icon’s $300 million fortune

On Tuesday, German fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld died at the age of 85. Now, his cat, Choupette, stands to inherit a portion of his $300 million dollar fortune.

In an interview with Numéro last year, the former creative director of Chanel and Fendi announced that the beloved feline would serve as his heir. Rebuffing skepticism, Lagerfeld added, “Don’t worry, there is enough for everyone.”

Choupette, whose name is French for “sweetheart,” has historically lived a lavish lifestyle, with the fashion designer hiring maids to ensure her comfort. The inheritance will ensure the silky Burmese cat continues living her best life, which means daily meals of caviar and chicken pâté and travel on private jets.

However, Choupette is unlikely to need the financial assistance from the estate. The pet celebrity has amassed over 260,000 followers on Instagram and has earned a healthy $3 million through sponsorships and ad appearances. She has previously served as an ambassador to German automobile manufacturer Opel, launched her own lines with brands like makeup company Shu Uemura and luxury cat-product producer Cheshire & Wain, and been the subject of two books. Lagerfeld addressed his cat’s fortune — both cat-made and bequeathed — in the past, noting, “She has her own little fortune, she is an heiress. If something happens to me, the person who will take care of it will not be in misery… She’s a rich girl!”

The cross-species duo lived in France, which has strict laws disallowing money left to pets in wills. However, Lagerfeld likely addressed these legal issues prior to his death, telling Numéro, “Well it’s lucky I’m not French then.” The fashion designer hinted that the sum would be transferred leveraging his German citizenship, a country that allows animals to be estate beneficiaries.

Depending on the sum left to Choupette, she may usurp the title of the richest cat ever, a title which previously belonged to Blackie, a British cat who was left $9.15 million by his owners in 1988. Unfortunately, she will be unlikely to beat out a German Shepherd named Gunter IV as the richest animal ever; the dog inherited $375 million in 1991 from German countess Carlotta Liebenstein.

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

Jussie Smollett officially indicted, now faces felony charges

Chicago police have confirmed that Empire star Jussie Smollett has been officially indicted by a grand jury. He now faces felony charges for filing a false police report and disorderly conduct.

Detectives will be contacting Smollett’s legal team to make arrangements for his arrest. If Smollett is ultimately found guilty, he could face up to three years in prison. The actor is expected to appear in court on Thursday.

Smollett is accused of orchestrating his own attack with the assistance of Nigerian brothers and Empire extras Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo. The brothers are expected to testify before the grand jury.

Smollett initially told police that he was attacked by two men outside a Subway restaurant in Chicago during the early morning hours of January 29th. The 36-year-old actor, who is openly gay, described his assailants as white men wearing ski masks, who asked Smollett if he was “that f***ot Empire n*****?” before attacking him with a rope and bleach. As they fled the scene the men yelled, “This is MAGA country!” according to Smollett.

In reality, the Osundairo brothers say they rehearsed the attack with Smollett in the days prior. They told police that they scouted a location where they believed a camera would capture the attack. During the actual attack, one of the brothers held the rope and poured bleach while the other wore a plain red hat and yelled slurs at Smollett, CBS Chicago reports. The Osundairo brothers say the plan was never to seriously injure Smollett and they described the contact made with his face as “weak.”

Police say the Osundairo brothers purchased the rope found around Smollett’s neck at a hardware store in Chicago, while they bought a red hat — in the style of a Trump MAGA hat — at a beauty supply store. Surveillance footage of the brothers purchasing some of these items was obtained by CBS Chicago, which you can see below. CBS Chicago reports that Smollett told the brothers what to buy and spoke to them by phone “countless” occasions.

The brothers agreed to cooperate after police threatened to charge them with battery, according to Chicago’s FOX 32.

In a statement released over the weekend, Smollett’s lawyers said their client “is angered and devastated by recent reports that the perpetrators are individuals he is familiar with.” The statement continued, “He has now been further victimized by claims attributed to these alleged perpetrators that Jussie played a role in his own attack. Nothing is further from the truth and anyone claiming otherwise is lying.”

Smollett’s attorneys went on to say one of the “purported suspects” is a personal trainer that Smollett worked with and “it is impossible to believe this person could have played a role in the crime against Jussie or would falsely claim Jussie’s complicity.”

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed

RAMZi and Priori Cancel New Album After Being Accused of Cultural Appropriation

Canadian artists RAMZi (real name: Phoebé Gulleimot) and Priori (Francis Latreille) have announced the cancellation of their joint LP as Jumanjí. The album, which was slated for release on FATi Records, was met with criticism for its incorporation of audio clips from countries such as India, Brazil, and Mali, as well as samples from “Vande Mataram,” which is the national song of India. The project was condemned on social media for cultural appropriation, and in response to the criticism, FATi Records released a statement on their website stating that “the production of FAT02 – Jumanjí has been halted and excerpts were removed after members of the community voiced legitimate concerns regarding its content.”

FATi Records asserted that “it was never our intention to exotify our music for the sake of making it more exciting, nor was the inclusion of this sampled material an afterthought,” but later concluded that “after reading the feedback and engaging in thoughtful discussions, we realize that our process was misguided.” Read their full statement below.

“The production of FAT02 – Jumanjí has been halted and excerpts were removed after members of the community voiced legitimate concerns regarding its content. After thoughtful consideration we have decided to cancel the release of this album. Here are a few words about our approach and our decision.

The samples used on this record stem from different parts of the world (incl. India, Brazil, Mali, Canada and many more). We have compiled and collected these specific audio clips over time through an appreciation for music, film and politics from a variety of different cultures. Far be it from us to utilize sounds and voices from different cultures to better ourselves financially or otherwise. In the spirit of Fourth World music, we intended this project as an ode to fusion, a way of harmoniously bringing together a wide range of influences across genres and cultures.

After one of us took an Indian Music Theory class, we were deeply moved by Preetha & Soumya’s interpretation of Vande Mataram and decided to sample the word ‘Vande’, as enunciated by people of different generations; one sung by a child, with the pitch unaltered. We knew of the patriotic nature of the song and thought it aligned well with our appreciation of Indian music. It was never our intention to exotify our music for the sake of making it more exciting, nor was the inclusion of this sampled material an afterthought.

At the essence of Jumanjí (and by extension FATi Records) is a sense of fantasy and child-like adventure, the album being an invitation to go on a journey through different microcosms, beyond any specific genre or era. Paired with a desire to contrast Canada’s colder climate, our mutual interest in ecology led us to create oneiric soundscapes that are far removed from our day to day reality. Drawing from a wide variety of influences in and outside of music, and inspired by a friendship that developed in the process, we intended to create music with a sense of togetherness.

After reading the feedback and engaging in thoughtful discussions, we realize that our process was misguided. No matter our intentions, it is not up to us to determine if the use of borrowed material is upsetting to members of cultures we are not a part of – especially cultures that have experienced the traumas of colonization. We believe cultural identity and social/political equality comes before the music, which is why we decided to call off the production of this record. We are committed to an ongoing process of reflection and education and would like to thank everyone who has provided thoughtful and nuanced criticism.”

Read about RAMZi’s Phobiza vol. 3: Amor Fati on Pitchfork’s year-end list “The Best Electronic Music of 2018.”

Pitchfork RSS Feed

All of Marvel’s Netflix series have been cancelled, with Jessica Jones and The Punisher getting the axe

In the past few months, the Netflix arm of Marvel’s film and TV empire has clearly been winding things down. Whether it’s because of Disney’s forthcoming streaming service, or simply because the pop culture mega-conglomerate is trying to bring all of its properties in-house from now on, Netflix previously announced that DaredevilLuke Cage, and Iron Fist have all been cancelled.

Now the last dominoes have fallen, as Deadline reports that The Punisher and Jessica Jones have been axed. The former leaves just after its second season debuted on the streaming service, while the latter will air its already completed third season before ending its run. There’s no current release date for the final season of Jessica Jones, but it will mark the conclusion of a five-year run on Netflix for the far more adult side of Marvel’s output.

Here’s Netflix’s statement to Deadline about the cancellations:

Marvel’s The Punisher will not return for a third season on Netflix. Showrunner Steve Lightfoot, the terrific crew, and exceptional cast including star Jon Bernthal, delivered an acclaimed and compelling series for fans, and we are proud to showcase their work on Netflix for years to come. In addition, in reviewing our Marvel programming, we have decided that the upcoming third season will also be the final season for Marvel’s Jessica Jones. We are grateful to showrunner Melissa Rosenberg, star Krysten Ritter and the entire cast and crew, for three incredible seasons of this groundbreaking series, which was recognized by the Peabody Awards among many others. We are grateful to Marvel for five years of our fruitful partnership and thank the passionate fans who have followed these series from the beginning.”

Marvel released its own statement on the cancellations as well, complete with an intriguing final note:

“It had never been done before. Four separate television series, each with different super-talented showrunners, writers, directors, cast and crew, coming out months apart and then… they would meet in a single event series all set in the heart of New York City. We called them The Defenders.

And together we were thrilled by stories of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and even the Punisher joined in! They said it couldn’t be done. But Marvel assembled amazing teams to write, produce, direct, edit, and score 13 seasons and 161 one-hour episodes. Take a moment and go online and look at the dazzling list of actors, writers, directors, and musicians who graced us with the very best of their craft.

We loved each and every minute of it.

And we did it all for you — the fans — who cheered for us around the world and made all the hard work worth it.

On behalf of everyone at Marvel Television, we couldn’t be more proud or more grateful to our audience. Our Network partner may have decided they no longer want to continue telling the tales of these great characters… but you know Marvel better than that.

As Matthew Murdock’s Dad once said, ‘The measure of a man is not how he gets knocked to the mat, it’s how he gets back up.’ To be continued…!”

Punisher star Jon Bernthal also weighed in via Instagram:

While the shows always shared a great deal of continuity, none of the grittier Marvel stars have yet to make it into the silver screen side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but who knows. What happens with the characters, or their respective series, remains to be seen. But for now, the Netflix era of the MCU has come to its end.

Consequence of Sound RSS Feed