Issue 6 2021 FINAL

scan.editor

scan.lancastersu.co.uk | Twitter @SCANLU | Instagram @scanlancaster | facebook.com/SCANonline Week 21 - Week 22

C O M M E N T

S C A N

S T U D E N T C O M M E N T A N D N E W S

Image by Lancaster University

The Trident nuclear Programme:

Ban the bomb

ARTS & CULTURE

‘LUTG Presents: Collective

Dating’

FASHION&

BEAUTY

Image: Lancaster University Students’ Union

Importance of

Kering & Investment in

Vestiaire Collective

LIFESTYLE

Why The Police and

Crime Bill Is

Important

Is

Having A Flat Easter the

New Flat Christmas?


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C O N T E N T S

EDITORIAL TEAM

Want to get involved? We’re always looking for writers,

photographers and more - email the relevant section

editors below to register your interest, or head to the

NEWS Pg. 3-5

‘Groups’ section of our Facebook page to join sections

Why The Police and Crime Bill Is Important

Eden Project North Talk

that you’re interested in.

The Sarah Everard Case & The Issue Of Women’s Safety Coup In Myanmar: A Nation Fighting For Democracy

Explained: The AstraZeneca Blood-Clotting Claim

Editor

Erin Wilson

scan.editor@lancastersu.co.uk

COMMENT Pg. 6-9

“Say her name!”: On how Lancaster is reacting to Sarah Everard’s death

5 Reasons Bimini Bon Boulash is the Best Thing to Happen to Us The Joy of Imperfection

Jazz is Overdue its Big British Comeback

The Trident nuclear programme: It’s time to ban the bomb

ARTS & CULTURE Pg. 11-14

Review of ‘LUTG Presents: Collective Dating’ Book Review: A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas

Creative Writing: Trains and Other Disasters Stephen King’s Pet Sematary: Inspiration through Grief

The Appeal of Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights Eff the Tudors: Gay Pirates and Students with Scurvy

4 Incredible Books Celebrating Women’s Empowerment

Associate Editor

Jodie Reeve

scan.associateeditor@lancastersu.co.uk

Carolynne Editor

Lauren Banks

scan.carolynne@lancastersu.co.uk

Online Editor

Sophie Tomlinson

scan.onlineeditor@lancastersu.co.uk

MUSIC Pg. 15-18

Britney Spears was always incredibly. Here’s why. Review of Dualists Lipa’s Studio 2054

Why is Sia’s Music being slammed as ill-considered and problematic by the autistic community?

An Allegory To Concerts

Taylor Swift: Making Grammy History

Interview with GROUPLOVE’s Hannah Hooper

SCREEN Pg. 19-22

An interview with Zoë Rose Smith, Editor-in-Chief of Ghouls Magazine Marvel’s WandaVision Review

The Oscar Nominations: A year of firsts and the most diverse awards yet?

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Season 2: 10 Most Iconic Moments

Judas and the Black Messiah

The Best Foreign Language Series to Watch on Netflix

FASHION & BEAUTY Pg. 23-26

Collaboration: a few reflections

Top fashion influencers you need to follow!

Ripped Jeans: the Seat of Rebellion

Where to Shop and What to Buy this Spring

Importance of Kering & Investment in Vestiaire Collective

A Review of the Film of the Chanel Fall/Winter 2021/22 Ready to Wear Show

LIFESTYLE Pg. 27-30

DIY Ways to Celebrate Women’s History Month

From sleep to yoga: The Best Wellness Apps

What to do with your Easter eggs?

Is Having a Flat Easter the New Flat Christmas?

Appetite Suppressants: What Would You Rather?

SPORT Pg. 31-34

Sexism Salaries? BBC Sport’s gender pay disparities.

Yorkshire Yoyos: How Yorkshire’s football teams rarely shine

Football

EDITORIAL

Happy Easter everyone!

Eddie Out? England Rugby’s terrible

A Pain in the VAR-se: The Pros and Pitfalls of Technology in

I hope everyone is managing to have a nice, relaxing break before the final term of this bizarre year.

In SCAN news, we have now elected our new Editor, Tabitha Lambie. She will be running SCAN from 2021-

22 and we wish her the best of luck!

Good wishes also go to our new FTO team - we wish you all best for your time in office. I’ve got to say a big

thank you to our amazing News Team and that of Bailrigg FM for their help with covering the elections!

Once again , hope everyone is enjoying the break and SCAN will be back in the new term!

Carolynne Online Editor

Jonathan Robb

scan.carolynneonline@lancastersu.co.uk

News Editors

Tom Burgess and Syed Ahmed

scan.news@lancastersu.co.uk

Comment Editor

Beth Train-Brown

scan.comment@lancastersu.co.uk

Sport Editor

Sam Stewart

scan.sport@lancastersu.co.uk

Arts & Culture Editor

Megan Jones

scan.arts@lancastersu.co.uk

Music Editor

Oli Middleton

scan.music@lancastersu.co.uk

Screen Editor

Rhys Wright

scan.screen@lancastersu.co.uk

Fashion & Beauty Editor

Rhian Daniel

scan.fashion@lancastersu.co.uk

Lifestyle Editor

Jennifer Kehlenbeck

scan.lifestyle@lancastersu.co.uk

Head of Online Publicity

Lilli Reuss

scan.marketing@lancastersu.co.uk

The Editorial Committee above is responsible for all content

and production of SCAN. Compliments, comments and complaints

to be addressed to Editor in the first instance. The Editor-in-Chief,

Shannon McCaul, is responsible for all legal matters

and significant reputational harm and can be contacted

at su.vp.campaignsandcomms@lancaster.ac.uk

Erin Wilson

Editor

scan.editor@lancastersu.co.uk


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N E W S

Why The Police and Crime Bill Is Important

Tom Burgess

NEWS EDITOR

The Police and Crime Bill has currently

passed the second reading stage in Parliament,

as of writing. This Bill has received

widespread backlash as it empowers the police

to control peaceful protests in the UK.

Police already had the power to decide the

routes of marches and can put restrictions on

a protest if it is deemed to be too disruptive or

threatens to become violent, but the new Bill

greatly expands restrictive powers. The Police

and Crime Bill will allow the police to decide

the start and end time of protests, set noise

limits and apply restrictions to protests of any

size- even one person protests.

Under these new restrictions, the act of

peaceful protest will be undermined. Protests

are fundamentally noisy and disruptive,

think of the suffragettes or the Stop the

War Coalition against the Iraq War. There are

several parts of the Bill that have come under

scrutiny and it has been accused by members

of all parties of being ill-thought out. Prior to

the Police and Crime Bill protestors who were

causing too much disruption would have to

be asked to move on before they could be

said to be breaking the law. Under the new

Bill, there will be no need for warning, it says

that protesters ought to know about the new

restrictions.

Many of the high profile protests of recent

years, such as the Extinction Rebellion protests

in 2019, would not be allowed under

the Bill which prohibits intentionally causing

a public nuisance. Glueing yourself to a

window wearing different animal masks as

protestors did in Parliament to put pressure

on MPs to take climate change seriously will

no longer be allowed. Perhaps the most controversial

change in the Bill concerns damaging

memorials or statues, which will now be

punishable with up to ten years in prison. The

toppling of Edward Colston in Bristol in 2020

was a key part of the debate surrounding the

killing of George Floyd and issues of systematic

racism. Protests bring people together in

an expression of dissatisfaction and allowing

the police to have these powers is horrifying.

Many critics have expressed concern about

the infringement of the human right to protest

and free expression. While the Home

Office repeatedly says it will respect human

rights, but there is a track record of public

protest being an incendiary issue. Public

protest usually supports a cause in direct

conflict with the actions of the government

of the time. The government has been rightly

accused of fanning social worries surrounding

protests to win votes. While the Bill goes

some way to protecting the nation’s statues,

the Rights of Women group says it still fails

to implement measures that would reduce

violence against women and girls.

This Bill will have a huge impact on the publics

ability to have its say on the government’s

decisions in the periods between elections.

Accountability is being reduced while societal

divisions are being maximised. Public

protest is one of the fundamental pillars

of democracy and it has been undermined

with minimal scrutiny and fuss. So many of

the greatest

leaps

forward

for equality

and human

rights

have been

achieved

due to

peaceful

and sometimes

disruptive

protests.

Will

we look

back at this

moment

and wish we

had done

more to

stop it? How

many will

have been

arrested for protesting important issues?

How many will have been jailed in the name

of defending statues?

Image courtesy of Pixabay

Image courtesy of the_sugarhouse via Instagram

The Sarah Everard Case & The Issue Of Women’s Safety

Louisa Hinks

Content Warning: Discussions Of

Sexual Harassment, Rape, and Murder.

Sarah Everard’s murder has made a lot of

people across the UK very emotional and

contemplative of the issue of women’s safety.

Sarah was a 33-year-old marketing executive

who went missing on the 3rd of March

while walking home through Clapham,

South London. She wasn’t walking down a

dark and secluded part of town. Her journey

from Clapham Common to Brixton is one of

London’s busiest and well-lit areas. She was

wearing brightly coloured clothes and was

on the phone with her boyfriend for part of

the journey. But still, she was allegedly kidnapped

and murdered by Wayne Couzens, a

Metropolitan Police officer working for the

elite Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection

unit. Sarah’s death prompted vigils all

over the country, where as well as mourning

he death, women addressed the wider issue

of their safety, and sexual violence against

them.

Many men were shocked by the UN Women

UK’s survey statistic

that 97% of young

women have been

sexually harassed,

however, most women

are were not surprised

by that statistic

as they know

the reality. Many

comments circulating

online and that

I have heard in real

life, assume that

100% of women have

been sexually harassed

at some point,

but the 3% just may

not be aware of it.

There isn’t really any reason that men should

be so surprised. We live in a society where

rape is normalised, especially at university.

This is backed up by research from the NUS

Women’s Campaign which has revealed that

75% of students in the UK have had at least

one instance of unwanted sexual experience.

Most university students will have witnessed

sexual harassment in bars and nightclubs.

The fact is that it’s so normalised is

why these incidents would not have caught

the attention of most people, and they may

not even class them as sexual harassment.

Research done by the University of Washington

has revealed that conventionally attractive

women are more likely to be believed

when they report sexual harassment. Those

who aren’t typically feminine are often believed

to be lying. White women are the

most likely to be taken seriously when they

report sexual harassment. But even then,

denial of the reality of sexual harassment

of all women is still prevalent, which is why

96% of victims do not report what happened

to them.

Of course, Sarah Everard was allegedly murdered,

which goes way beyond sexual harassment.

But the fact remains that if she was

a woman of colour, the outrage at her death

would not have been as great. And it’s likely

her case wouldn’t be given the same amount

of attention and public support. This is not

to take away from the pain and suffering of

her family, what happened should not happen

to any woman. But serious issues of inequality

are highlighted, nonetheless.

Blessing Olusegun was 21 when she was

murdered, and her body was discovered on

a beach in East Sussex in September 2020.

Her death was deemed ‘unexplained’. Public

interest in what happened to Olusegun has

resurfaced after the death of Sarah Everard

this March. Needless to say, it took the death

of a white woman for most people to even

notice that this young black woman had

been murdered months earlier.

In conclusion, more needs to be done to

take unwanted attention and violence, towards

women more seriously. Currently,

the Lancaster University Student’s Union is

discussing what changes need to be made to

the sexual assault and harassment reporting

system in order to promote a safer campus

environment.

Image Courtesy of Morten Watkins via Flickr


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N E W S

Explained: The AstraZeneca Blood-Clotting Claim

Syed Ahmed

NEWS EDITOR

In the past few months, the AstraZeneca vaccine

has been administered into the arms of

millions of people here in the UK and around

the world. This vaccine has been one of the

few rays of hope in this winter of anxiety and

loss. However, in the past few weeks, there

have been some not-so-good news reports

coming out of mainland Europe about the

Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine.

In mid-march, more than a dozen European

Union countries starting with Austria and

including Germany, France, Italy, and Spain

temporarily suspended the use of the Astra-

Zeneca vaccine. This step was taken after a

few cases of severe blood clots and a couple

of deaths were reported in some mainland

European countries including Italy, Austria,

Denmark, and Norway.

At the time of this decision and in addition

to many medical experts, the European

Medical Agency (EMA), the top drug regulator

for the EU community stated that vaccination

drives should continue because the

benefits of inoculation outweigh the current

risks and that “there is currently no indication

that vaccination causes these conditions”.

In addition to this, the World Health

Organization (WHO) concurred with the

EMA’s position by saying that, “As of today,

there is no evidence that the incidents are

caused by the vaccine and it is important

that vaccination campaigns continue so

that we can save lives and stem severe disease

from the virus.”

Furthermore, AstraZeneca Plc., the British-

Swedish company that developed the vaccine

in collaboration with the University of

Oxford also had stressed that the vaccine

was safe and there was no evidence of an

increased risk of blood clots among recipients.

This statement was made after a

review of 17 million people in the U.K. and

Europe found fewer than 40 cases of blood

clots, which as a proportion is even lower

than what one would expect to find in the

general population.

The temporary suspension was later rescinded

by most of the countries following

a report by the European Medical Agency

which reviewed data from over 20 million

vaccine recipients in the 30-member European

Economic Area and found just 7 cases

of blood clots and 18 cases of a rare condition

called CVST. On the basis of these numbers,

the report stated that a causal link between

the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine and

the blood clots was not proven but is possible

and deserves further analysis.

Even though the suspension was lifted, the

damage was done in terms of public confidence.

This is because this row led to large

Eden Project North Talk

Tom Burgess

NEWS EDITOR

On Wednesday 24th April, Lancaster University

hosted an online public talk about the

Eden Project North, pitched by Lancaster’s

own Professor Robert Barratt. Back in May

2020, Barratt was appointed as Education

Chair, the first joint appointment between

Lancaster University and the Eden Project.

Acclaimed British scientist Lord Robert

Winston hosted the event and Lancaster’s

Vice-Chancellor, Professor Andrew Schofield

was also in attendance. The talk consisted of

Professor Barratt presenting his idea of the

‘Morecambe Bay Curriculum’, a curriculum

he had outlined and defined. It was pitched in

detail, with Barratt discussing what the curriculum

will contain, when it will be achieved

by, and why it is important. The public could

then ask questions via the zoom call’s chat,

which Professor Barratt responded to.

SCAN managed to sit down with Professor

Barratt (online) to discuss this talk and asked

him how the Eden Project North will be affected

by COVID-19, to which he said “Covid

-19 has empowered the process. There is now

an even greater urgency to bring Eden Project

North to Morecambe Bay. Like the rest of

our country, it has tested our resilience and

capacity to adapt to new challenges. Further,

it has strengthened our resolve to bring the

Morecambe Bay Curriculum to life. The pandemic

highlights the importance of our relationship

to the natural world and highlights

the need for us to respect and live in harmony

with nature.” Then, SCAN asked him if he had

been surprised by the local and student response

to the Eden Project North, to which

he replied “Constantly! Children and young

people absolutely understand and know why

projects like this are fundamental to our future

survival. The project speaks to their

aspirations for the planet and themselves.

Most importantly, they see this project as a

beacon of hope not just for Morecambe Bay

but also the world.” Lastly, SCAN asked him

how he felt to deliver a talk to Lord Winston,

to which he said “Grateful. Lord Winston very

kindly offered to host the public lecture. His

insights into the power of the Morecambe

Bay Curriculum were profound. We listened,

and we will incorporate his thoughts into our

future thinking. ”

When asked about the talk, Lancaster’s Vice-

Chancellor, Professor Andrew Schofield said

“As Professor Robert Barratt made clear in his

talk, the Morecambe Bay Curriculum is about

inspiring a generation of learners through a

sense of place. In doing so it is breaking down

traditional artificial barriers that sometimes

exist between schools and between year

groups with projects that will make a tangible

difference to the Bay area.” When asked

falls in public confidence in the vaccine

across the EU. In France, 61% of the population

believed that the AstraZeneca vaccine

was unsafe, an increase of 18%. Similar decreases

were seen in Italy and Spain. These

numbers are in stark contrast to that of

the UK where confidence in the vaccine remains

quite high, with just 9% of the people

surveyed believed it was unsafe.

about the

developing

partnership

b e t w e e n

Lancaster

University

and Eden

Project

North, Prof

e s s o r

Schofield

said “I am

very proud

of the way

that Lanc

a s t e r

University

is playing

such an

important

part in trying

to bring

the Eden

Project

North into being in Morecambe. It is a once

in a generation chance to combine a visitor

attraction, an educational opportunity, and

a research and data facility in such a way as

to benefit both the local community and the

University.”

Image Courtesy of Marco Verch via Flickr

It will be interesting to watch the relationship

between Lancaster University and the

Eden Project North inevitably develop over

the coming few years, with the Eden Project

North still scheduled to be completed in 2023,

and then to open in 2024. The online talk is

available on Youtube - search Introducing the

Morecambe Bay Curriculum.

Image courtesy of Pixabay


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N E W S

Coup In Myanmar: A Nation Fighting For Democracy

Syed Ahmed and Sam Turner

NEWS EDITOR & DEPUTY NEWS EDI-

TOR

On the 8th of November 2020, Myanmar

held its second parliamentary elections

after the successful completion of 5 years

of democratic rule in a country where the

military has historically governed over the

population for a large part of the nation’s

independent history. In the 2020 election

cycle, Aung San Suu Kyi’s ruling National

League for Democracy (NLD) won 396 out

of the 476 seats in parliament, while the

army’s proxy, the Union

Solidarity and Development

Party, won just 33

seats.

In response to this humiliating

defeat, the army

responded by disputing

the results, claiming that

the election was fraudulent

with the existence

of 8.6 million irregularities

in voter lists across

Myanmar’s 314 townships.

This claim of

voter fraud was however

categorically rejected by

the civilian-appointed

Union Election Commission,

citing the lack

of evidence to support

the army’s claims. The

coup attempt had been

rumored for several days,

prompting statements of

concern from many western

democracies including

the UK and US.

On the 1st of February,

at the crack of dawn, the

Burmese military seized

control of the government

and by extension

the country. It did so by

detaining Aung San Suu

Kyi, and other party leaders in early morning

raids. In addition to this, numerous

communications channels including phone

lines to the capital stopped working. Widespread

internet disruptions were reported

beginning around 3 a.m and the military

disrupted cellular services throughout the

country. Furthermore, the army placed

around 400 elected members of parliament

(MPs) under house arrest and confined

them to a housing complex in Naypyidaw,

the country’s capital, thus preventing them

from being sworn-in.

However, on the 4th of February 70 NLD

MPs took their oath of office, in clear defiance

of the military. During the coup, soldiers

also detained several Buddhist monks

who had led the Saffron Revolution back

in 2007, including many outspoken critics

of the military. As of the 4th of February,

the Assistance Association for Political

Prisoners (AAPP) has identified around 150

officials, lawmakers, and civil society activists

in detention by the army as a result of

the coup.

The military subsequently announced on

the army-controlled Myawaddy TV that

it had taken control of the country for a

period of one year and a statement signed

by the acting president declared that the

responsibility for legislation, administration,

and judiciary has been transferred to

the Commander-in-Chief of the Burmese

military, Min Aung Hlaing. The military also

announced the removal of 24 ministers and

deputies.

Just two days after the start of the coup,

Myanmar police filed criminal charges

against Aung San Suu Kyi, accusing her of

breaching the Export & Import Law, for

allegedly importing illegal communications

devices. Meanwhile, the President

of Myanmar Win Myint was charged with

violating the Natural Disaster Management

Law for waving at a passing NLD convoy

in September 2020, thereby violating rules

against election campaigning during the

COVID-19 pandemic. Over the next few

weeks, both the Burmese Ambassador to

the UK and the envoy to the United Nations

were sacked and recalled because they had

dared to condemn the coup that was taking

place back on their home soil.

Since the beginning of the coup d’etat on

the 1st of February, protests have erupted

across Myanmar, calling for the removal of

the junta and the introduction of a democratic

system. They are the largest since the

2007 Saffron Revolution, similarly against

military rule. Many of the protests emerged

after NLD politician, Mahn Win Khaing

Than, made a speech on Facebook, urging

civilians to defend themselves against

the coup. However, the protests shouldn’t

be pidginized as merely a reaction to the

military takeover - they are also the result

of years of building resentment towards

military-political power which clearly

hasn’t followed through on the 1988 promises

to move towards democracy.

The protestors are calling for a removal of

the military junta, which has been overshadowing

a facade of democracy due

to their power-sharing relationship with

Aung San Suu Kyi since 2011. As the recent

election results show, where the NLD party

won a resounding 396 seats, the people of

Myanmar desire democracy - this is the

aim of the current protests. However, it is

important for them not to slip back into the

power-sharing relationship between the

NLD and military which has caused falsified

democracy for the country.

The protest initially started as a civil disobedience

movement; protestors honked

horns and banged pans in response to the

coup. This quickly progressed into general

strikes, halting various economic sectors,

essential to military-economic power. More

recently, protestors - including lawyers,

doctors, students, and government officials

- have taken to the streets, some armed

with knives, axes, and petrol.

It was reported that a number of Chinese

facilities were looted and set on fire by

protestors on the 14th of March in response

to fears around Chinese support of the military.

The military has responded in force,

imposing mass restrictions, using communication

blackouts and physical force such

as water cannons, rubber-coated bullets,

tear gas, and live

ammunition.

Numerous

videos have surfaced

depicting

heavily armed

military firing

live rounds at

unarmed civilians

and attacking

individuals

at point-blank

range. The

military has

also imposed

martial law on

certain areas,

such as Yangen.

This transfers

all state power

to the military

and introduces

military courts,

allowing the

trials of protesting

individuals,

journalists, and

others at will,

almost always

resulting in a

conviction without

appeal.

The protestors

have fashioned

makeshift barricades and shields, and

have been using social media to make the

movement more cohesive and raise awareness.

Doctors in the protests attempt to

treat the wounded, however so far over 149

have been killed. A three-finger salute has

been adopted by protestors as a symbol of

resistance, taken from the ‘Hunger Games’

film and book series, marking their fears of

absolute military dictatorship akin to the

dystopia series, a testament to the warped

reality of the situation.

Image Courtesy of MgHla aka Htin Linn Aye

via Wikimedia Commons


scan.lancastersu.co.uk | Twitter @SCANLU | Instagram @scanlancaster | facebook.com/SCANonline Week 21 - Week 22 | 6

C O M M E N T

“Say her name!”: On how Lancaster is reacting to Sarah

Everard’s death

All images courtesy of Vaz JL

Hayley Neary

A chorus could be heard every night last

week from Dalton Square.

Kill the bill! Kill the bill! Kill the bill!

Although small in comparison to the groups

gathered in London, Bristol, and Manchester,

people of Lancaster came each night

to stand in solidarity with the vigils for recently

murdered Sarah Everard, which have

been met with police violence. The people of

Lancaster also gathered to resist the recent

Police, Crimes, Sentencing and Courts Bill.

The bill would allow the police more power

to deal with protestors and bring in harsh

sentences for protestors who are ‘causing a

serious annoyance’, and comes into parliament

coincidentally soon after the Sarah

Everard protests.

Protests have occurred across the country

this last week with outrage at the lack of

government empathy for women’s safety

and the brutality displayed at the Clapham

vigil.

It was not until a police van was set alight

by Bristol protestors on Sunday that it was

broadcast on National news.

It has been said that the demonstration

began peacefully but as protestors sat in

front of the police station they were met

with violence by police who came out in riot

gear and used police dogs to make demonstrators

move. Violence then broke out as

protestors refused to be silenced, and retaliated.

The Home Secretary has deemed the scenes

“unacceptable” and Avon and Somerset Police

have said that there will be severe consequences

for those identified. But people

are arguing that taking away the public’s

rights to protest peacefully would result in

such scenes.

Scenes were not so dramatic in Lancaster

on Saturday night. Members were socially

distanced and wearing masks, as requested

by the posters. Although the demonstration

was not organised, some participants stood

up to speak. One member started with a

quote from Labour MP David Lammy:

“Instead of tackling gender-based violence,

the government has prioritised giving police

the power to prohibit the fundamental

freedom to protest that the British public

holds so dear.

“By giving the police discretion to use these

powers some of the time it takes away our

freedom all of the time.”

This bill won’t just take

away the British

public’s rights to

protest, but

will also target

marginalised

groups.

T h e

b i l l

brings

i n

hostile

laws for

the Gypsy

Traveller

community,

criminalising

them under the

g u i s e

of trespassing

laws, and wants

to bring in more rights

for police to stop and

search which research

has shown targets Black

people nine times more

than any other group.

It also brings in laws to

put undercover police in

bars and nightclubs. The

speaker deemed this a

“cruel joke” as many are

still outraged by Sarah

Everard’s murder at the

hands of a police officer,

alongside the trail of accusations

against police

officers, including a reported

incident in the West

Midlands where an off-duty

police officer attacked a woman

on her walk home. PC Oliver

Banfield used techniques

from police training to grab

her by the neck and tackle

her to the ground. The victim

managed to escape and Banfield

has since resigned, but he

was spared a prison sentence.

This has only fueled the flames

of protests.

The Lancaster speaker went

on: “Time and time again we

watch the Conservative party

cut funding, protect the rich,

tell countless lies and leave the

majority of us vulnerable.

This lack of support

has left us angry

and exhausted

but we

m u s t

speak

u p .

We

can’t

allow a

hoarding

of power

by Priti Patel

or the police as it

brings us one step closer

to an authoritarian society.”

They gave a message of solidarity and a

hope for change before the demonstrators

took to the pavement with placards and

began chanting. The congregation travelled

to protest outside the police station chanting,

“No justice, no peace. Fuck the Police.

Whose streets? Our streets.”

‘Kill the Bill’ protests have continued

throughout this week with police continuing

to use brute force to break up peaceful

social-distanced demonstrations. We saw

scenes from the Black Lives Matter protests

in America where citizens resisted police

brutality; at the time, the UK was vocal in

our relief that our police force would never

behave in such a way, but now it is happening

on our doorsteps.

We’re seeing police in riot gear use force

against protestors attempting to assert

their right to peacefully protest. Violence

has been met with violence.

Footage has circulated on social media

of a police officer threatening and pushing

a journalist from Bristol Cable. Adam

Cantwell-Corn and Alon Aviram attended

the demonstration on Tuesday 23rd and

shared the clip of the confrontation on Twitter.

Cantwell-Corn informed the officer that

they were reporters but the officer denied

them access and ordered them to disperse,

telling them, “just because you study journalism

doesn’t make you a journalist.” The

pair presented their press passes but the

officer continued to deny them. Avon and

Somerset Police have apologized.

We want our streets to be safe for everyone

but allowing police more power is not the

solution.

From the scenes we have seen in Bristol

and London alongside increasing reports

of sexual assault from members of the police

force, it is clear that relations between

the force and the public are at an all-time

low. The lack of trust is evident. The government’s

attempt at damage control and

securing sympathy for the police is quickly

marred with ever-increasing footage being

circulated every day. How can we amend

this? Is it possible for the police to restore

faith?

Amongst the chaos, positive conversations

centered around community and mutual

aid. Would funding be put to better use in

reforming local projects, education programmes

and youth centres? Would our

country be better having specialised, community-based

forces to deal with certain

issues rather than spreading the police so

thin?


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C O M M E N T

5 Reasons Bimini Bon Boulash is the Best Thing to Happen to Us

Karolina Abornevaite

Bimini is the East London plant-based princess

that has snatched everyone’s hearts

(and wigs) who appeared on season 2 of Ru-

Paul’s Drag Race UK. They are the self-proclaimed

“gender bender, cis-tem offender”

we can’t get enough of.

From the moment they sauntered into the

workroom up until the last moment they

lip-synced for the crown against Tayce and

Lawrence Chaney, Bimini

has formed

a rapport

with her

audie

n c e

l i k e

no other

John Carlyle

Yesterday, I recorded some jazz on my clarinet.

I played out of tune, the vibrato was

heavy, the tempo was inconsistent, and the

articulation was muddy. There was no elegance

or cerebral activity whatsoever.

I had recorded it to demonstrate to my

friend how I sounded as an amateur clarinettist.

Twenty minutes later, he responded

with an audio file of the piece with piano

chords. There was something charming

about its roughness and simplicity. I had a

new-found appreciation for the composition;

it was somehow beautiful.

And it taught me an important lesson.

queen of the season has.

Here’s just 5 reasons why Bimini will remain

in my heart long after the season has ended:

1. Their lip-sync against Joe Black

As the competition kicked off, Bimini unfortunately

found themself at the bottom

with the legendary Joe Black. Flaunting

their derriere and rocking 10-inch heels,

Bimini pulled off a sultry and comedic performance

to ‘Relax’ by Frankie Goes to

Hollywood.

As they humped the

floor to their win,

we got a taste of

the star quality

that we were

going to see

blossom

and develop

before

our eyes

over the

next few

weeks.

2. Their

candid

conversation

with

Ginny Lemon

As the queens

geared up for a tough

sewing challenge in episode

3, banter was flowing in the workroom.

However, that was not the only thing in the

air.

The atmosphere took a serious turn as Ginny

Lemon opened up about their identity

insecurities to Bimini. We got to see both

queens engage in a conversation about a

very sensitive yet necessary topic on mainstream

television, allowing the viewers to

see a different side of both queens.

Everyone goes through a stage where they

contemplate their identity, whether it be

their sexuality, gender, looks, or purpose in

life. It’s rewarding to see someone speak so

candidly about that on mainstream TV.

3. Their pwiceless Snatch Game performance

The queens sashayed away to quarantine in

their respective abodes, spending the next

few months working on their act. At this

point, Bimini was skating somewhere in the

middle. But this break was the watershed

point in Bimini’s Drag Race journey.

The minute Bimini opened their mouth

in character as Katie Price and asked, “Is

it cold in here or is it just my nipples?” we

knew Bimini had the game. Price’s iconic

lisp and tiara-topped wig was the beginning

of Bimini’s winning streak.

4. Release the beast, Bimini!

As the competition paid homage to the Eurovision

Song Contest in episode 5, Bimini

stole the show with the United Kingdolls’

rendition of ‘UK, hun?’

Their witty lyrics addressed identity positivity,

complimented the wit and sass with

plenty of ass and choreography as they

showed off the flying splits they’d learned

during the seven-month break from Drag

Race.

This winning combination propelled Bimini’s

group to win the challenge and gave the

UK its entry to the real Eurovision. (Sorry

James Newman, you can stay home.)

5. Their fashion CHOICES

Bimini’s fashion on the show went through a

journey: from their Norwich footie fan look

to their rhinestone-encrusted high fashion

acne look to their literal amoeba outfit. Taking

literal concepts and giving them their

own spin, Bimini propelled themself to

frontrunner status, rocking their bad baby

panto dame and devilish playboy bunny to

acclaim. And let’s not forget her opening

look, a vegan queen in pink faux leather and

a wig for days.

A special shout-out must also go to their

Valentina-esque look in the confessionals,

sporting a beret, white faux fur and choker:

a queen who has an eclectic taste off and on

the runway.

I can’t wait to see what Miss Congeniality

does next and you can expect me to be

adding Vegan Queen to my Instagram bio in

homage to our saviour.

Image courtesy of @biminibabes via Instagram

The Joy of Imperfection: Getting Creative in Lockdown

self to, maybe this is what you need to hear.

Take a step back and laugh at yourself. Look

at your work without critical contempt and

enjoy its roughness.

The extraordinary psychological pressure

placed on productivity in lockdown has

driven many of us to forget that hobbies are

not supposed to be stressful. During the first

lockdown, between university and sleep, I

worked on my novel and practiced my clarinet

or saxophone for at least six hours a day.

There was no time to relax. I had to improve

and make the most of the time I had been

given. Within a week, I no longer wrote my

novel and my music practice was down to

one hour a day (though I am sure the neighbours

were pleased with this development).

Too often we take art too seriously. Not only

in our work, but also in our leisure. John Coltrane

said there is fun in being serious, but

most of us are not Coltrane. Taking yourself

too seriously is a quick way to become frustrated

and quit your hobbies.

If you are sitting at home becoming increasingly

irritated by your inability to be great at

whatever art form you have dedicated your-

My interest in writing was revived in the second

lockdown. Sat with my friends in our

flat, one of them proposed we write poetry

together. I was entirely unmotivated but

decided to join in anyway. I scribbled down

a short poem on my notepad, deliberately

seeking to make it as terrible as possible. After

revealing the masterpiece (no, I shall not

show it here), we all laughed. That night, we

composed an entire anthology of truly the

worst poetry ever written.

But the next day, I began to write again.

In this lockdown, I have been more willing

to laugh at my own art; hence, my increased

creativity in producing it. There is a great

amount of joy to be found in the mistakes

and imperfections of your work and looking

at them may inspire you to push yourself in

a new direction.

Sometimes the rough itself can be as charming

as the diamond.

Image courtesy of John Carlyle


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C O M M E N T

It’s Trad, Dad! Jazz is Overdue its Big British Comeback

John Carlyle

Trad (traditional jazz) was a New Orleans

revivalist movement of jazz in Britain during

the 50s and 60s which rejected newer

styles, such as bebop and big band swing,

and successfully fended off the rock and

roll craze. The simple and catchy melodies,

improvised freely to a swinging rhythm, satisfied

people’s taste for something familiar

and exciting.

The recent passing of Chris Barber marks

the final death in a trinity, remembered as

the ‘Three B’s of British Trad.’ He died this

March, following Acker Bilk in 2014 and

Kenny Ball in 2013. He was the last living

big-name bandleader in the trad movement.

To the founders of trad, New Orleans jazz

represented a happier, more innocent time

before the Second World War.

“The music had a freedom to it, which we

didn’t hear in the British dance bands,” Wally

Fawkes observed. It may have been less organised

and sophisticated, but that gave the

music a unique authenticity. Within months

of the first trad band playing in Barnehurst,

the pub was packed to see the raw emotion

and passion of the amateur musicians.

The social conditions were there for the

music to explode. In America, trad was the

ultimate statement of non-conformity and

rebellion, whilst also having the power to

raise minority groups to the level of royalty.

King Oliver went from an unknown, unheard

black American gardener to a musician,

pioneering collective improvisation

and paving the way for Louis Armstrong’s

rise to fame.

In the British clubs, the power of this liberation

was felt. When Sidney Bechet arrived

in England, flouting the trade union ban of

American musicians in the UK, the wildfire

of trad became an unstoppable force. Bands

sprouted up all over the country, bringing

long-forgotten music into the spotlight

again.

Trad was not without its critics.

Beboppers saw the music

as derivative and

backward-looking.

Big band musicians

saw it

as primitive

and unsophisticated.

B u t

w h e n

‘Bad

P e n n y

B l u e s ’

became

the first

jazz track

in the UK

to hit the

top 20, trad

had solidified its

place in the British

popular music DNA forever.

Trad jazz was at the frontline of social

movements. When the Campaign for Nuclear

Disarmament (CND) began, the trad

bands marched along the picket. The collective

democracy was inextricably linked with

the socially progressive politics of its members.

The Crane River Band would travel on

tour to East Berlin rallies, and Webb’s Dixielanders

would play at gigs put on by the

Young Communist League. The grassroots

accessibility of the music appealed directly

to the inclusivity that the movement went

on to represent.

British trad established

its new

name when

Terry Lightfoot’s

record

prod

u c e r

wanted

a

catchy

n a m e

for the

n e w

g e n r e

of music.

Its

familiar

image of

the waistcoat

and bowler hats

can be traced back

to Acker Bilk’s publicity

5 Tips for Working from Home

manager, Peter Lesley, who suggested the

uniform for an album cover. He then suggested

that the band should play as seen,

determining the eccentric image of the clarinet

forevermore.

Although the uniforms may not have aged

well, the parallel social conditions of then to

today should not be overlooked. After being

isolated for so long, people itch for freedom,

connection and companionship; three principles

expressed in the collective improvisation

of trad.

Already, we see a backlash against overly

engineered inauthentic music, such as Rebecca

Black’s ‘Friday Remix’, and a desire

to return to older collective music forms,

such as the Sea Shantyphenomenon. New

Orleans street bands in

frequently hit millions of views on YouTube.

Social movements are gaining seemingly

ever-increasing momentum.

All the conditions are right.

So pick up your trumpets, clarinets and skiffle

boards, and get out there! Maybe leave

the bowler hats and striped waistcoats behind

though…

Image courtesy of Joseph Kiesecker via Flickr

Emma Blakey

DEPUTY COMMENT EDITOR

Since so many of us are getting used to

online learning and remote job placements,

now is the perfect time to review how it’s

going. By figuring out what isn’t serving

you anymore, you can work in a happier,

healthier way.

1. Consider your routine

This applies to all aspects of your daily life.

If your evening routine

involves watching

Netflix until 3am, this

will negatively impact

your 9am Teams call.

By creating a good

morning and evening

routine involving

light exercise, time

away from screens,

and whatever makes

you feel better, you

can focus more during

your working day.

It’s helpful to consider

your weekly university routine, too. Maybe

an hourly scheduled online calendar works

for you. Or maybe you’d prefer to bulletpoint

a handful of daily tasks. If you use

bullet-point to-do lists, prioritising the

most important tasks with numbers or

asterisks can allow you to work on the most

pressing projects first. Either way, finding

out what helps you to work more productively

will give you more free time.

2. Take frequent breaks, but not just on

TikTok or Instagram

Taking a few minutes every hour can

help us focus more on tasks. However,

if we spend breaks scrolling online, this

often makes us lose track of time and the

brain-fog that comes with endless scrolling

won’t help you write your assignments any

quicker. Instead, you could walk around the

block or call a friend.

3. Look into productivity apps

Productivity apps can be great for when

you’re feeling overwhelmed by how much

you have to do. I’d recommend Notion if

you’d like to organise to-do lists and schedules

in one space online. Another fantastic

app that I use most days is Forest, which

allows you to plant digital trees for fixed

amounts of time. If you select ‘concentration

mode’, it means you can’t use any other

app until the timer finishes, otherwise your

tree will die.

4. Hold yourself accountable

An easy way of doing this is by talking with

course-mates or flatmates about what

you’re working on. By checking in with each

other, it can motivate you to get more done,

as you’re no longer just relying on yourself.

Video calls can be a great way of discussing

a difficult topic or revising together.

5. Be patient with yourself

Although all the above tips can help a lot,

not every day will be perfectly productive.

We’re literally living through a historical

moment, so now isn’t the time to be too

hard on yourself. If you’ve had a difficult

day and haven’t gotten very much done,

that’s completely okay.

By accepting your energy levels and how

much you can get done each day, you’ll feel

less pressure weighing you down. If you’re

feeling overwhelmed, try setting a 5-minute

timer and starting whatever task is most

important.

Sometimes, just starting sets you up better

for the entire day.

Image couresty of Emma Blakey


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C O M M E N T

The Trident nuclear programme: It’s time to ban the

bomb

Rhys Wright

SCREEN EDITOR

Beneath all of the hate crimes, murder, police

brutality, and COVID-related developments

in the news lately, there’s another

troubling headline you may have missed –

the government are increasing the UK’s cap

on nuclear warheads.

This will end decades of nuclear disarmament

and flush tax revenue into new weapons

of mass destruction.

Since the end of the Cold War, the UK’s Trident

nuclear programme is more of a fossil

than ever. This show of aggression by

the government is just the latest in a long

line of ‘defence’ policies aimed at asserting

the UK’s ( fragile) masculinity on the world

stage.

The Trident programme was first established

in 1980, composed of four submarines

based at Clyde Naval Base (against the

wishes of the Scottish government), with

missiles purchased from the US and at least

one submarine always at sea in order to

strike at anywhere in the world, like something

out of a dystopian novel.

This constant threat of mass destruction,

rather than being consigned to the ash heap

of history, is now being proliferated thanks

to the government’s decision to increase its

nuclear stockpile for the first time in decades.

As it is, the programme has and continues

to be a black hole in the public purse, with

even the most conservative estimates predicting

that maintaining and modernising

the nuclear programme will cost more than

£179 billion. In a time when public sector

workers are having to beg for the smallest of

pay raises and COVID has the economy on

its knees, doubling down on devices capable

of levelling entire cities shouldn’t be taking

priority.

And what about opposition?

The Greens, SNP, and Plaid Cymru are all in

favour of scrapping Trident. But Labour?

Forget it. The Shadow Defence Secretary has

recently said, “Labour’s support for the UK’s

nuclear deterrent is non-negotiable.” Labour

leader, Keir Starmer, has consistently

voted to preserve Trident but objects to lifting

the stockpile cap as if having weapons of

mass destruction is somehow permissible if

there are fewer than 180.

The Prime Minister retorted to this meagre

objection with the time-old masquerade of

“standing up for our armed forces”, despite

the fact that sinking billions into bombs

that will likely never be used provides no

material benefit to the people he claims to

be standing up for.

The prevailing justification for continuing

the programme is that it keeps us safe, but

does it really?

The nuclear deterrent did nothing to prevent

any of the attacks against the UK between

now and its introduction in the 1950s, and

the billions spent in maintaining it could

be far better spent addressing more pressing

concerns like cyberattacks. Aside from

being ethically repugnant, nuclear weapons

are now illegal under international law.

Rather hypocritically, the UK is a signatory

in the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear

Weapons, which this latest action violates,

and once declared war on Iraq under

the pretext of disarming alleged weapons of

mass destruction.

The fact of the matter is, the government

possesses over a hundred nuclear warheads,

with each warhead estimated by The Guardian

to have an explosive power of around 100

kilotons. To put that into perspective, the

bomb dropped on Hiroshima was a small 15

kilotons and killed over 126,000 civilians.

No institution should possess that kind of

power. The government’s renewed efforts

to sink billions into proving its own importance

to the international community is another

reminder that it’s long past time we

ban the bomb.

Total nuclear disarmament is not without

precedent. South Africa in the 90s completely

dismantled its nuclear arsenal and joined

the Non-Proliferation Treaty. Is it really so

unthinkable to disarm and dismantle 180

weapons of mass destruction? Or is it just

that clinging on to the ability to wipe entire

cities off the map is the only way the empireless

UK can once again feel important?

Trying to monopolise the threat of thermonuclear

annihilation is causing more

harm than good. Take the Iran nuclear

deal, struck between Iran, the US, UK, Russia,

China, France, and Germany to curtail

Iran’s nuclear programme in exchange for

lifting the economic sanctions on Iran. The

Trump administration withdrew from the

agreement in 2018, unilaterally reimposing

sanctions, and since then diplomatic tensions

with Iran have spiked, with no signs of

the deal being salvaged or a new deal being

brokered.

The US, UK, Russia, China, and France are

the only legally-recognised nuclear weapons

states according to the Non-Proliferation

Treaty. The treaty demands that they

all commit to disarmament but has no

means to force them to do anything at all.

This fundamental power imbalance, where

a select few are allowed to possess weapons

of mass destruction, is what threatens Iran

and North Korea into pursuing their nuclear

programmes at all costs. The government’s

lifting of the stockpile cap further impedes

any diplomatic progress in restoring the

Iran nuclear deal.

In other words, ending disarmament is putting

us in more danger.

If you want further proof that the UK’s nuclear

programme has only been about asserting

the government’s weakened sense of

power and prestige, look no further than the

Defence Policy Committee’s 1954 statement

that the purpose of the programme was to

“strengthen our position as a world power

so that Her Majesty’s Government can exercise

a powerful influence in the counsels of

the world.”

It was never about defence; it was always

about power and control.

So, while the government tries to suppress

protests and put statues before people, be

aware that there is another threat of violence

that is a cornerstone of government

policy. This threat of mass destruction is a

relic of colonialist notions of superiority and

it threatens us all.

Image courtesy of bodgerbrooks via Wiki

Commons


C

A R T S

& CULTURE

A R

O LY

N

THE APPEAL OF WUTHERING HEIGHTS

MUSIC

BRITNEY SPEARS WAS ALWAYS INCREDIBLE

FASHION

& B E A U T Y

WHAT TO BUY THIS SPRING

LIFESTYLE

N E

SCREEN

A CRITICAL LOOK AT APPETITE SUPPRESSANTS

DRAG RACE UK SEASON 2: 10 ICONIC MOMENTS


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A R T S & C U L T U R E

Review of ‘LUTG Presents: Collective Dating’

Rhys Wright

SCREEN EDITOR

LUTG’s latest production, a Zoom version

of V. B. Leghorn’s Collective Dating, fully embraces

the limitations of pandemic era theatre.

While this wasn’t my first time watching

a production over Zoom, director Jacqui

Clark has clearly proven to be up to the task

of staging an entirely virtual production.

Every performer knew their lines and adjusted

well to being miles apart from each

other, which is no small feat considering

the myriad of gaffes and technical hiccups

which have the potential to plague virtual

productions.

However, the drawbacks of using Zoom,

such as the occasional buffer, out-of-sync

audio, and poor Wi-Fi on my end, could

sometimes get in the way of the excellent

performers and led to some lines being

cut off. The unavoidable lack of interaction

with the audience really makes you wish

we lived in the timeline where this was inperson

and you could laugh along with the

jokes, marvel at the staging and movement,

and experience the communal thrill of inperson

theatre. But despite the unavoidable

absence of a stage and audience interaction,

the humour of the script and the skill of the

performers still shone through.

The production performs five of Leghorn’s

collection of twelve one-act plays, all showcasing

satirical looks at modern dating,

each with its own touch of insanity and wit.

The first features five lovelorn singletons

being coached on online dating by a selfdescribed

love guru played by Lewis Pugh.

Pugh’s manic energy and magnetic stage

presence brilliantly brought the character

to life and perfectly embodied the zany

charm and absurdity of professional dating

coaches.

The second play follows a lucky (or perhaps

not so lucky) young woman, played charmingly

by Nishi Sockalingam, who competes

on what appears to be a dating show in the

vein of The Dating Game and The Bachelor

and is presented with a choice of three men

by an unhinged “host”. Tom Wilson as the

host channels the hyperbolic lunacy that

pervades the dating show genre in a fourthwall-breaking

play with many standout performances.

The other three plays all operate under the

same concept: speed dating. Each one

features two people matched together by

a sinister system to varying results. Our

first couple doesn’t start out on the best

of terms, while the second couple, played

superbly by Matt Hodkin and Cat Thomas,

slowly reveal themselves to be more unstable

than they first appear. And for the

showstopper, our third couple unexpectedly

hit it off until the tragicomic ending

in a setup reminiscent of Black Mirror’s

‘Hang the DJ’.

Leghorn’s one-act plays fall into the

same genre of relationship satires as the

aforementioned ‘Hang the DJ’, Her, and

The Lobster, and still manages to leave

a stamp of wit and originality while successfully

covering a broad range of topics

and characters in relatively short spans of

time. And ultimately, LUTG’s skilful adaptation

to virtual performance has proven

to be a joyous experience more than

worth watching.

Image courtesy of @lutgcollectivedating

via Instagram

Creative Writing: Trains and Other Disasters

Alice Luva

The rain was pouring down the rail

tracks, and it seemed like it would never

end. They already cancelled two trains

because of a “technical error”. They

never say what actually happened, it is

always this standard message,

“technical error”. I wonder if I’ll

get home today. I only wanted

to buy some groceries in the

next town, because the grocery

store in Lorwen is overpriced;

they only sell co-op products.

There is nothing wrong with coops,

they have a really nice concept,

but I also need to watch

my purse.

It would be nicer if they would just

open a normal supermarket, especially

considering that the supermarket

is as they say a supermarket

where all the profits go back to

the community. I don’t see these

profits going back to me, I only see

that there is one supermarket in

Lorwen with overpriced food. One

overpriced supermarket during a pandemic

when travelling on public transport can be

quite dangerous.

Then I checked the announcement board

and it said: “Five Minutes until the train to

Lorwen arrives”.

“Well at least that’s something,” I thought

as I got up from the bench. It only took

them two hours to fix this “technical error”.

I looked in the direction of the train,

and I could see a light in the distance. It was

slowly approaching through the thick oak

woods of Nevermore. I hope this is the train

and not my hypothermia-driven body playing

tricks on me. The light was slowly taking

the shape of a train, and rolling into Nevermore

train station. When the train stopped

a message came through a speaker: “This

train will continue its journey to Lorwen in

45 minutes, we are sorry for the inconvenience.”

Then the doors opened and dozens of people

left the train without keeping any distance.

Well what distance, would be the

question? There is no distance on public

transport. Luckily I could still enter the

train; it didn’t say nobody could enter it until

the train driver arrives - that is always a

good sign. So I entered the dry train through

the metal door and went looking for a place

without any people that are close to me. I

walked through the corridors until I managed

to find said seat. Then I sat down and

looked through the window.

There it was, my bench. The blue bench I

used for over two hours, now occupied by

a woman clad in red. Maybe she’ll wait two

hours for her train too. Underfunded public

transport is one of the most unreliable

sources of transport, but still cheaper than

paying for your own car. So that is what I do.

Students need to watch their budget after

all. I kept on staring through the window

until the train started moving.

The oak woods of Nevermore were

slowly disappearing and being replaced

by fields filled with sheep.

The sheep were replaced by stone

buildings and eventually, we arrived

in Lorwen.

I waited for a minute until everyone

had left the train so that I wouldn’t

get caught in the crowd and then

left the train too. The train station

in Lorwen was nothing more than a

small stone building with two train

tracks. Luckily, they at least had a

bus stop that was close to the station.

I walked through the stone

building until I reached the bus

stop, then I sat down and waited

for the bus. According to the plan, it

should be here in three minutes.

Well, according to the plan...

Image courtesy of pidoubleg via Flickr


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A R T S & C U L T U R E

Erin Carey

Emily Brontë’s masterpiece, Wuthering

Heights, has inspired fourteen film

and television adaptations, around

50 novel-format retellings and

even a #1 song. However, at the

time of its initial publication

in 1847, many contemporary

critics found little to love

about the cult classic and

even claimed the revenge

story too disturbing to be

of any great literary value,

with H.F Chorley’s 1847

review deeming it a ‘disagreeable

story’. Indeed,

the novel’s protagonists,

Heathcliff and Cathy, are two

destructive, self-serving and,

at times, wholly unpalatable

characters. Their brutal romance

plays out amidst the backdrop of

the wild Yorkshire moorlands, which

almost acts as a character itself. Brontë’s

novel deals in the darkness of unhappy

families and how the yoke of patrilineal

inheritance plays a huge part in the characters’

misery. But why has Bronte’s airing out

of the Earnshaw’s and Linton’s ‘dirty washing’

remained so enticing in the present

day? Arguably, the biggest cause is Cathy

and Heathcliff.

Heathcliff is the polarising romantic villain

who is impossible to feel indifferent

towards. His actions are consistently despicable

and rarely amicable, and yet it is

Heathcliff who remains the most captivating

character of the novel. He is frequently

voted literature’s favourite romantic hero

in polls, despite his violence and tyranny to

pretty much everyone in the novel. Heathcliff

’s tortured romance with Cathy is idealised

most often in modern film adaptations,

most famously in the 1939 film starring Sir

Lawrence Oliver and Merle Oberon. Despite

Cathy’s death midway through the novel

and Heathcliff ultimately dying alone, their

relationship still dominates the second part

of the book. The romance of the next generation

between Hareton Earnshaw and

the young Catherine Linton pales in comparison

to the older Heathcliff and Cathy.

Brontë’s conclusion of the turbulent story is

one that has fascinated critics for over one

hundred years. The engagement of young

Catherine Linton to Hareton Earnshaw

ostensibly suggests that their responsible

and less melodramatic love is preferable to

Heathcliff and Cathy’s volatile passion. Although

Brontë rounds the story off with the

young couple, the supernatural elements

of the novel suggest Heathcliff and Cathy’s

ghosts still haunt the moors: ‘the country

folks, if you ask them, would swear on the

Bible, that he walks’. Eerily, Heathcliff and

Cathy linger in the moors after their respective

deaths, and their characters have certainly

proved to be culturally immortal.

Heathcliff, especially, is firmly cemented as

on e o f

t h e m o s t

menacing characters in English Literature.

In her 1850 preface to Wuthering Heights,

Charlotte Brontë wrote, ‘whether it is right

or advisable to create things like Heathcliff,

I do not know.’ Heathcliff and even other

characters like Cathy and Hindley delineate

the most primal instincts of humanity.

It is no mere coincidence that the violent

characters of Heathcliff and Cathy choose

the unruly moors as their haven of escape.

Nor is it a coincidence that Lockwood reports

that the moorlands have become a

‘quiet earth’ following Heathcliff ’s death.

Masterfully, Brontë creates a landscape

that mirrors the tempestuous behaviour of

the characters who inhabit it. In Heathcliff

and Cathy’s absence, their remaining family

members and the Yorkshire moorlands are

finally at peace.

Why is it, then, that the story of Cathy

and Heathcliff is still so appealing?

More modern

responses to Wuthering

Heights have

certainly viewed

the relationship

through

a more practical

lens.

In 2007,

Guardian

critic Martin

Kettle

wrote, ‘if

Wuthering

Heights is

a love story

then Hamlet

is a family sitcom’,

in response

to a UKTV Drama

poll which recorded

that 2,000 people had voted

Image couresty of____________

The Appeal of Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights

the novel as the greatest love story of all

time. Kettle rightly articulates that to limit

Wuthering Heights to a love story neglects

its arguably more prominent

themes of obsession, revenge, family

and wealth. The ‘love’ between

Cathy and Heathcliff is a much

more complicated matter.

But ultimately, the popularity

of Cathy and Heathcliff

is not that much of a mystery.

For many, Heathcliff

is appealing because of

many flattering film portrayals,

namely those that

exclude the second half of

the book, where Heathcliff

only grows crueler and more

calculated in his vengeance

and money-grabbing. Naturally,

it is likely that Heathcliff ’s

mystery also makes him an intriguing

romantic hero for a reader. Brontë

writes Heathcliff

as an orphan picked

off the streets of Liverpool

with no name

and no history. When

he is older, he also

leaves the Heights

for several years before

returning much

wealthier, but with

no explanation as to

how he attained this

money. But what is

most fascinating

about Heathcliff, and

was certainly rare

for literary romantic

heroes at the time,

is how he hates as

intensely as he loves.

For him, love and

hate do not exist separately

from one another;

they are interchange-

able, perhaps even

the same thing.

Truly, Heathcliff

is an

anti-hero

at best

and a

v i l -

lain at

worst.

His act

i o n s

blur the

line between

love

and hate frequently,

and yet

we, the readers, still

seem to root for him to end up with Cathy

regardless.

Ultimately, Wuthering Heights’ central relationship

and its ‘Byronic’ protagonist has enchanted

audiences, past and present. Many

have credited Wuthering Heights with fuelling

the trope of literary ‘bad boys’. Feminist

writer Caroline Norton in 1863 wrote: ‘a race

of novel-heroes have sprung up whose chief

merit seems to be that… they could ‘knock

down a Mammoth or a Megatherium’1. Norton

refers to Emily’s sister Charlotte Brontë

and her similar fallibility in creating romantic

heroes who fundamentally treat their

lovers terribly. Just as contemporary critics

could not fathom whether to rejoice in

Brontë’s melodrama or condemn it, critics

today are still divided. Ultimately, the most

fascinating and enduring quality of Emily

Bronte’s masterpiece is her ability to evoke

a reception of simultaneous magnetism and

contempt for her central character.

1 Samantha Ellis, The Telegraph, How

Heathcliff Ruined My Love Life, [accessed

15/03/2021], https://www.telegraph.co.uk/

books/what-to-read/heathcliff-ruinedlove-life/

Images courtesy of:

(Top) @phenominareads via Instagram

(Middle) ImaArtist via Pixabay

(Bottom) Tom Simpson via Flickr (Wuthering Heights

by Robert McGinnis)


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R T S & C U L T A U R T R S E& C U L T U R E

4 Incredible Books Celebrating Women’s Empowerment

Lilli Reuss

HEAD OF ONLINE PUBLICITY

Especially in light of recent events, it is more

important than ever to read about women’s

experiences in this world, celebrate their

diversity, and empower each other. I always

find that I learn the most about something

and someone’s experience by reading from

their perspective about their particular

experience, which is an essential factor in

smashing the patriarchy. I have always felt

drawn to books written by women about

women because books written by cis-white

men tend to give women a specific narrative

that I find incredibly annoying, harmful, and

disempowering. Here, I want to recommend

a few empowering and essential books for

understanding the different intersections

of what it means to be a woman in this

world.

The Vagina Monologues

by Eve Ensler

I will never,

ever shut up

about this

book because

it is just excellent.

This

is a play from

the 90s that reflects

women’s

experience with

their sexuality,

sexual violence, and

abuse worldwide. This

Lauren Banks

CAROLYNNE EDITOR

Ever since reading Throne of Glass when I

was 15, I have been a massive Sarah J. Maas

fan. I stormed through her second series,

A Court of Thorns and Roses, not once but

twice last year. Three books of steaming romance,

vibrant magic, and a massive cast of

sexy characters – it was all I had ever wanted.

So with the release of the 4th book in the

ACOTAR universe, of course, I binged all 750

pages in about 3 days.

A Court of Silver Flames focuses on Nesta

Archeron, the sister of the previous main

character Feyre. In the months following

the war with Hybern, Nesta has fallen apart,

drowning her trauma in wine and sex, until

her sister puts her foot down and sends her

to train with Cassian, a winged warrior with

whom she shares an intense connection.

Over the course of the novel, we see Nesta

begin to process her trauma and make

new friends, as well as become a formidable

fighter within her own right, using her

strange powers to keep herself and the ones

she loves safe.

was a very insightful and touching reading

experience for me and very different from

anything I had ever read. Especially when

it comes to sexuality, as women continue to

face a double standard. Women are overtly

sexualised by the male gaze while simultaneously

being shamed for their sexuality,

which this book mirrored very well. It is

concise and yet manages to capture a significant

aspect of feminism and female sexual

empowerment.

It is not about the Burqa edited by Miriam

Khan

This book is written by seventeen different

Muslim women about their experiences in

the Western world. It focuses on Islamophobia

and what it means to have to constantly

defend one’s existence, fate, and place in

this world. This book taught me

a lot about prejudice and

Muslim women in the

western world and

is a great starting

point for learning

about the

intersectionality

of feminism

regarding religion

and race.

Girl, Woman,

Other by Bernadine

Evaristo

I feel like most people

have already read this

Twined within the main plot is Nesta and

Cassian’s developing relationship. Maas

knows how to write the most intense romances,

complete with pining and miscommunication,

and Nessian (as fans have

fondly nicknamed them) is no different.

Every scene between the two is electric, and

the number of sex scenes they share was

enough to make me, a seasoned romance

reader, blush. The whole book is ridiculously

sexy and far more graphic than any of Maas’

other books – but it works. It’s refreshing

to find high fantasy like this that’s actually

written for twenty-ish-year-olds rather than

teens, something that Maas has cornered

the market with, especially with her third

series, Crescent City.

book, but in case you have not: do it now!

This is a beautifully crafted narrative following

twelve Black British women. Each

chapter is dedicated to a different character

and follows their life story and

the struggles they have faced

throughout it. It explores

what it means to be

a Black woman

in 20th century

Britain, and all

the chapters

weave an

interconnected

tale

that spans

generations.

Evaristo has

a beautiful

writing style,

and each of

the characters

feels distinct,

unique and highly

complex. It is fascinating

to read about

how these characters are

interwoven and how they perceive

each other’s relationships entirely

differently. I thoroughly enjoyed every chapter

and was completely drawn into this story

and compelled to keep reading despite

the absence of an overarching plot. I would

recommend this to everyone, especially if

you are British.

Circe by Madeline Miller

By far, this is Sarah J. Maas’s best book. She

writes about trauma in such a compelling

way, something that I hadn’t previously seen

in fantasy worlds. Nesta begins to deal with

her issues in healthy ways: through exercise,

breathing exercises, and the friendships she

develops with other women along the way. I

wasn’t a fan of Nesta in the previous books

– I thought she was bitchy, cold and unnecessarily

harsh to Feyre. But Silver Flames

turned that impression on its head. By being

able to see into Nesta’s inner world,

to see what she thinks and feels and

why she does what she does, lets

me understand her motivations

and fall in love with

her completely, and I

was rooting for her the

whole way through the

book.

Silver Flames has

definitely knocked

the Throne of Glass

series from my series

top spot. Maas

is also apparently

planning to write more

books with Nesta as the

main character, or possibly

Elain, the third of the

Archeron sisters. The fact that

I have to wait another year minimum

for another Sarah J. Maas book

is absolutely criminal – I need it NOW. If

high fantasy is your thing, A Court of Silver

Flames and the previous three books in the

series are for you.

Greek mythology has always massively interested

me; however, the misogyny reflected

in Greek tales was always very jarring. In

this retelling of Circe’s life, the witch that

enchanted Odysseus’s men into pigs, Greek

mythology gets a feminist

spin. This book

follows

Circe’s

life and is a

beautiful

exploration

of

woman-

hood ,

lonel

i n e s s

and finding

power and

strength within

yourself. Even if you do

not know much about Greek

mythology, this book is an excellent introduction

and sets the stage really well. Miller’s

writing style is absolutely stunning and

is sure to captivate you.

Images courtesy of Lilli Reuss and Frederica Romanieloo @myfullbookshelf

via Instagram

Book Review: A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas

Image courtesy of @graybookdreaming via Instagram


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A R T S & C U L T U R E

Stephen King’s Pet Sematary: Inspiration through Grief

Joe Hopewell

It feels redundant for me to start this brief

piece by saying that Pet Sematary is a novel

about death. It’s not through a high body

count that Stephen King’s 1983 horror classic

achieves this reputation (though there is

one – you have been warned), but in how it

spotlights different ways that those left behind

react to it. Grief is as much a process of

death as dying is, and King remembers this.

What follows is a novel with all the potency,

cruelty and sorrow needed to explain its

long-lasting legacy.

For those unaware of the plot: a young married

couple, Louis and Rachel Creed, alongside

their two young children, relocate to

an idyllic Maine home. They soon adjust

to their new lives and bond with a friendly

elderly neighbour, Jud Crandall. However,

after the family cat is hit by a truck on the

nearby highway, Crandall reveals to Louis

a sinister secret; in the nearby woods, an

ancient burial ground lies – one which for

generations the locals have used to bring

their pets back from the dead – though not

as they once were.

Let’s hope the Creed’s young toddler stays

away from that busy road…

King relates his small cast to the central

theme, making each one display a different

perspective throughout the novel. Rachel

Eff the Tudors: Gay Pirates and Students with Scurvy

Louisa Hinks

In light of the events of summer 2020, when

George Floyd’s murder and the protests that

followed caught the attention of the world,

Ben Pollard and Jenny Recaldin decided

to launch their podcast, Eff the Tudors,

to share untold histories of marginalised

groups.

Their series focuses specifically on BAME,

LGBTQ+, and women’s histories, upon reflection

that the history they learned at

school neglected these kinds of voices.

I completely love the premise of this podcast,

as a mixed-race woman studying history,

who is often found complaining about

how Eurocentric and male-dominated the

curriculum is.

I listened to the first episode, ‘Gay Pirates

and Students with Scurvy’. The title caught

my attention as I am currently specialising

in anarchy in the Caribbean, which includes

the history of pirates in the Caribbean, but

sadly not any stories of bisexual pirates. Perhaps

I’ll bring up the story of Anne Bonny in

my next seminar and see if any of the others

have heard of her!

lives in fear of even mentioning death due to

childhood trauma. Louis’ job as a doctor has

desensitized him to the prospect. Their oldest

child, Ellie, displays curiosity, whereas

the elderly Jud awaits for it like an old friend.

A universality is gained as we ask ourselves

which point of view is closest to our own

and whether any are correct, though they

are all proven insufficient by the novel’s

bloody conclusion.

What gives readers such a guttural response

to the narrative is its sense of intimacy.

Compared to King’s other famous works,

which can reach over a thousand pages with

a cast of characters in the hundreds, Pet Sematary

feels like a chamber piece. The story

is a scant 460 pages, rarely straying from the

Creed household. Most of the novel is time

spent with the family as they live, argue, reconcile,

love, and grieve. Until the harrowing

final act, the supernatural elements linger in

the background; by then, we are so invested

that when death truly enters the picture it

hits us like a sledgehammer.

These elements intertwine, giving the text

a simple but excruciating quandary: what

would we do if, like Louis Creed, we could

bring a loved one back from the grave? As

King follows this premise to its cruelest,

most inevitable conclusion, I found myself

shivering with dread as tears rolled down

my cheeks – a visceral emotional reaction,

unlike any other.

The podcast starts off very light-hearted as

Ben and Jenny discuss what they’ve been

watching on the TV. Jenny grabbed my attention

with her claim that Gilmore Girls is

the best show ever made; as a childhood favourite

of mine, this made me smile.

Then after about

fifteen minutes,

Ben goes on to discuss

the tragedy

that is the case of

Stephen Lawrence.

He goes into quite a

bit of detail so this

would make an important

listen for

anyone looking to

know more about

what happened to

Stephen and how

his friend Dwayne

Brooks was treated

following his murder.

As a South East Londoner, I have heard

much about the case of Stephen Lawrence

growing up from my parents and grandparents.

But still, the podcast was informative

on a few things I had missed.

Of all King’s

novels, few

are as nasty

as this. Salem’s

Lot

and The

Shining

have the

feeling of

a classic

ghost story,

and It, for all

its Lovecraftian

clown

action, is

about good

vanquishing

evil, but Pet

Sematary

is bleak, really

bleak.

Through

forces beyond

their

control, and

an inability

to move on,

the Creed

family is

brought to

a point where even death proves no respite.

This bleakness for me is where Pet Sematary

inspires; if anything can be learned from this

story, it’s that no one escapes death. It can

strike us at any time. It is important that we

I was unaware that Nelson Mandela was involved

in bringing justice to the Lawrence

family. Mandela conducted an interview

with the press following meeting the Lawrence’s.

This interview helped to hold the

police to account and increased public attention

on the case, pressuring the investigation

to go on further.

The second

part of the

podcast is “a

fun gay history”

of 18thcentury

pirates

Anne

Bonny and

Mary Reid, as

picked by Jenny.

They were

both illegitimate

children

who dressed

as boys in

their youth. And they continued to dress as

men throughout their adult lives to protect

themselves from discrimination while they

were pirates. Historians dispute the extent

to which this is mythologised.

Anne was disowned by her father and divorced

her first husband to marry John

treasure every moment of life we have and

never let the dead take precedence over the

living. Either that, or we should just never

visit Maine; spooky stuff happens there.

Image courtesy of Theo Crazzolara via Flickr

Rackham (Calico Jack), later joining his

crew. She reportedly stabbed every crew

member that found out she was a woman.

When she met Mary Reid, she seduced her

thinking she was a man. They both went on

to sleep with John and the rest of the crew.

One night the crew were ambushed, and all

the men were hanged for their crimes. The

two women ‘plead their bellies’, and Anne

was actually pregnant. Anne was released

with no ship and no crew. All histories of

Anne Bonney after 1720 are unconfirmed.

The podcast is currently on its second season.

A couple of the other episodes that

caught my eye are ‘Transgender Spies and

Kings with Secrets’ and ‘Genderfluid Abolitionists

and Bisexual Communist Affairs’.

Do check out the podcast to learn about

some interesting and important unspoken

histories over the Easter break.

Ben and Jenny are open to suggestions for

topics for the podcast. So, feel free to email

them at effthetudors@gmail.com

Image courtesy of Eff the Tudors via Facebook


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M U S I C

Britney Spears was always incredible.

Here’s why.

Rhys Wright

SCREEN EDITOR

With the traction behind The New York

Time’s documentary Framing Britney

Spears, those of us who’ve been following

#FreeBritney for a while now have been able

to breathe a sigh of relief as the legendary

pop star’s legal battle for freedom and autonomy

has finally captured mainstream attention.

Everyone from Justin Timberlake to

Sarah Silverman is belatedly apologising for

their part in contributing to the constant cycle

of media harassment that culminated in

the 2007-8 breakdown which led to her current

conservatorship. Since the public discourse

is now re-evaluating the way Spears

was mistreated in the public eye, now seems

like a better time than any to look back on

her classic discography.

1999’s …Baby One More Time saw a seventeen-year-old

Britney make the leap from

Disney Channel star to teen pop idol and

has everything you expect from late 90s teen

pop. Compared to the rest of her oeuvre, this

type of cutesy bubble gum pop seems rather

quaint, the title track being the big exception.

Nevertheless, it has better production

than anyone can reasonably expect from a

teenager’s debut, and it introduced the killer

hooks and breezy sound her later work

would perfect.

Its follow-ups, Oops! I Did It Again and 2001’s

Britney showed an evolution from teen pop

to an edgier sound. This era spawned absolutely

classic singles like ‘Stronger’ and ‘I’m

a Slave 4 U’, with the latter album serving

as a crossover from teen pop to adulthood.

Britney received mixed reviews and sold

less than its predecessors, which is a travesty

since it’s frankly her most underrated album,

featuring bangers like ‘Overprotected’

and iconic live performances like her dancing

at the 2001 VMAs with a snake around

her neck. In retrospect, ‘Overprotected’ and

‘Stronger’, both anthems of empowerment

and emancipation, now have a tragic irony

when you realise that her conservatorship

prevents her from buying so much as a cup

of coffee without permission.

This transition away from her girl-nextdoor

image and embracement of sexuality

and femininity marked a turning point in

the way Spears was treated by the media

and public. Suddenly reviewers were talking

more about her public image than her

music, but she still managed to serve more

unforgettable moments like

kissing Madonna at the

2003 VMAs. That year’s In

the Zone has more than

earned its reputation as

a staple of 2000s pop and

was influenced by everything

from electropop to

bhangra. ‘Toxic’ and ‘Everytime’

are not only two of

her best singles ever, but

frankly two of the best pop

songs of the 2000s.

The following era was one when deriding

Spears’ personal struggles was

a spectator sport, when Us Weekly, Perez

Hilton, and TMZ could continually invade

her privacy and turn her trauma and mental

health difficulties into a public joke. While

her personal life was falling apart and her

every public appearance was hounded by

dozens of rabid photographers, Spears responded

with Blackout. It was recorded

from 2006-7 when the intimate details of her

private life were splashed over every front

page, and much of the album reads as a response

to that degrading experience. ‘Piece

of Me’ directly confronts the media who just

wouldn’t stop with the body shaming, invasions

of privacy,

and

goading.

It’s a miracle that we have Blackout and its

follow-up Circus considering all that was

going on behind the scenes, and the fact that

both are classics of late 2000s dance-pop is

something few could ever accomplish. She

had fewer creative control over her subsequent

three albums and even less control

over her own finances. The damage wrought

by misogynistic media and the public who

ate it all up is something Britney is still living

with. She deserved so much better.

Image courtesy of Jorge Quinteros via Flickr

Review of Dua Lipa’s Studio 2054

Finn Bracegirdle

Going into 2020 nobody could have predicted

a year of bushfires, pandemics, and

a US election more vicious than any other

in recent memory. Music, however, was able

to shine through the darkness. From the

cheery dance-pop of Chromatica to the genre-bending

glory of Sawayama, music gave

us all an escape from the dreary monotony

of daily life in lockdown. But for an

industry so reliant on touring, a global

pandemic throws somewhat of a

spanner in the works. How do you

hold large-scale, live events when

nobody can leave their home?

Well, Dua Lipa has the answer

with Studio 2054, a live-streamed

concert for the year live music

ground to a halt.

In a word, Studio 2054 was fun. Pure,

unadulterated, disco-infused, fun. It

isn’t like any other online concert I’ve

seen before, with the team behind it ripping

up the rule book to put on one of the

most creatively produced live performances

ever. From the Top of the Pops-esque

staging used for the album’s title track, Future

Nostalgia, to Physical’s neon-drenched

roller disco, complete with The Blessed

Madonna in the DJ booth, everything onset

has been expertly designed to perfectly embody

the 80s influences

that

course through the veins of the album that

the event supports. The costumes, the lighting,

the lens flare, they all exude that disco

energy by the boatload to make for one hell

of a viewing experience.

But staging isn’t everything, and

it would be all for naught if the

vocals themselves weren’t

up to scratch. Thankfully,

this is Dua Lipa we’re

talking about and she

does not disappoint.

No shaky or missed

notes in a 70-minute-long

set is no

mean feat, especially

when you’re

running around

a warehouse performing

choreography,

but should we

really have expected

anything less from

the six-time Grammynominated

star? It wasn’t

a one-woman show either

with stellar performances

from stars such as FKA Twigs, Angèle,

and the Princess of Pop herself

Kylie Minogue, as they joined Lipa throughout

the show. The only part that somewhat

stuck out like a sore thumb was Elton John’s

performance of Rocket Man. Instead of performing

live in person, John was projected

on a wall and ended up being cut off during

the songs first chorus leaving it feeling like

a slightly random inclusion to an otherwise

glorious show.

The most disappointing part of Studio 2054

is the fact that in a few months, re-watching

this masterpiece legally becomes impossible

once it expires on streaming service

LIVENow. I’ve no doubt the complex intricacies

of music rights management are to

blame, but it’s frustrating that we won’t be

able to see it in all its glory in years to come.

Not content with just breathing new life into

pop music, Lipa and her team have raised

the bar for digital events higher than it’s

ever been before and I for one cannot wait

to see what they do next.

Photo courtesy of DUA LIPA via Instagram


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M U S I C

Why is Sia’s Music being slammed as

ill-considered and problematic by the

autistic community?

Charli Clement

In November 2020, the trailer dropped

for Sia’s film Music, a supposed “love

letter” to autistic people. It was immediately

criticised by our community - and

for good reason – but things only got

worse when Sia herself began to lash

out against autistic people chiming in

on the debate. The film and its PR have,

all-in-all, been seen as a disaster, and

in no way seems to present five years’

worth of work by Sia and her team.

Music is the story of a young autistic person

being left to their half-sister after the death

of their grandparent. Music, played by Maddie

Ziegler, is specifically a non-speaking

autistic person, whereas Ziegler is neurotypical,

which is where the criticism began.

This is a case of ‘cripping up’, which refers

to a non-disabled actor playing a disabled

role. Many outside the disabled community

argue this is fine as it is “just acting”, but the

experience of being disabled is not something

that can be replicated, and Ziegler’s

movements and emotions in the film are extremely

over the top and problematic. This

issue is comparable to films such as Rain

Man, which portrays autism is similarly

problematic ways. It has since been said by

Sia that Ziegler herself was upset at the notion

of playing the character due to believing

she would be mimicking autistic people,

but Sia promised that this wouldn’t be the

case.

However, Music isn’t even the central character

– her half-sister Zu, played by Kate

Hudson, is. This is seen on the main poster

for the movie. In a film supposedly created

to raise awareness about autism, the story is

focused on the carer – another key problem

in most current representations of disability

produced by non-disabled people. Disabled

people deserve to be the focus of media that

not only educates the wider population but

celebrates diversity and understands our

needs.

A wider issue came with Sia’s tweets, eventually

culminating in her deleting her account

earlier this year, previous to her

Golden Globes nominations. When the

musician said that she originally had an autistic

actress but they found it “unpleasant

and stressful”, employing Ziegler instead,

many autistic actresses replied saying that

they would have been available. This caused

Sia to reply to one with “maybe you’re just

a bad actor”. She also made remarks such

as saying that people who were like Music

would not be able

to use Twitter to

praise her, alongside

several other

comments.

In a later interview,

Sia admitted

that her use

of Maddie was

not only ableism

but nepotism as

well. Since Music’s

release, it has

gained a 3.7/10

rating on Rotten

Tomatoes, with

only 8% of critics

rating it positively,

alongside countless

other criticisms

from the autistic

community

and beyond. Several

autism charities

have spoken

out against the

film, including the

National Autistic

Society, as well as

The Autistic Self

Advocacy Network

(ASAN) and

Communication-

FIRST. The latter

have worked with

non-speaking autistic

young people

to produce the LISTEN Movie, which I

recommend you watch instead.

We see scenes that are meant to represent

the “inner workings” of Music - because the

film portrays those who are non-speaking

as unable to communicate in any way - but

this is fundamentally untrue. Many communicate

through Augmentative and Alternative

Communication (AAC) including

sign language, computers, or visual aids.

These scenes have also been said to be extremely

bright, colourful, and all-around

overwhelming for most viewers, let alone

autistic people who deal with sensory overwhelm

which can trigger meltdowns.

The film also contains scenes of prone restraint,

a method used when autistic people

are having meltdowns, which is known to

have killed several people from the community.

There is no discussion in the film of

this being problematic and there are many

concerns that the film will cause others to

believe this is a legitimate way to support

autistic people. When the trailer came out,

Sia said that she had undertaken four years

of research for the film, but it is clear from

the inclusion of this method that this must

have been insufficient.

Sia decided that autistic advocates should

have waited to watch the film in full before

making any judgement, but this is simply

not true. The trailer alone showed a lack

of care and research, as well as scenes that

clearly demonstrated that Ziegler’s portrayal

of a non-speaking autistic girl was unrealistic,

offensive, and ableist at its core.

Her constant use of “special abilities people”

on social media and in interviews (instead

of disabled) is demeaning and ultimately a

microaggression towards the disabled community

– disabled is not a bad word and we

have to stop hiding away from it. Autistic

people can’t fly or turn invisible and we have

never asked to be called this. It’s damaging

that Sia has spread this term so easily and

proudly.

There have also been accusations of blackface

in the film, with scenes showing Ziegler

with darkly tanned skin and headphones

made out of braids. The film exhibits problematic

behaviour after problematic behaviour,

and it is totally unacceptable.

The idea that the film was “made out of love”

does not excuse the damage it has done to

the autistic community, and the concept

that Sia has been ‘cancelled’ - when she

still has a huge platform and this film was

nominated for multiple Golden Globes - is

categorically untrue. The money Sia has

made off the film, as well as the fanbase she

continues to have, shows that there are few

consequences for such a problematic piece

of media. We deserve better, and representation

for autistic – and more widely, disabled

– people has an extremely long way to

go. It’s just as well, really, that the film hasn’t

been adored in the way I originally feared.

Photo courtesy of siamusic via Instagram


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M U S I C

An Allegory To Concerts

Olivia Middleton

MUSIC EDITOR

Without being too on the nose, 2020 was

a rough year for the music industry. The

glorious feeling of suspense just before the

music begins to play - signalling the arrival

of the main act - is a thing of the past. Postconcert

blues have been replaced by the

consistent blues of lockdown. Live music

truly suffered in every sense of the word -

concerts and festivals alike.

In the place of these in-person performances,

some artists have turned to online

shows. Touring and performing is a large

part of an artist’s life as well as providing

income. Many big names such as Dua Lipa

and Gorillaz live-streamed concerts to

homes all around the globe. Entry (if you

can call it that) came at a small fee. Gorillaz

‘Live From Kong’ was £15 for a star-studded

performance and gave watchers the chance

to hear their favourite tracks from Song

Machine performed live for the first time.

It was my first online ‘live’ concert and I

was thoroughly impressed but then again, I

can’t say I was surprised by the high quality

when you have Damon Albarn at the helm!

However, as I sat in front of my laptop

screen with slowthai throwing himself

about, I couldn’t help but feel an ounce

of sadness. This sadness followed me as I

explored live concerts of other artists I like.

Videos online of Radiohead performing at

Glastonbury or highlights from an Arctic

Monkeys concert. Shaky videos stored on

my phone from when I saw Ninja Sex Party

or The Band CAMINO. Online concerts are

great but, as mentioned in the first paragraph,

the feeling of an in-person concert is

unmatched. The pure electric energy of being

crammed together in awe of a performer.

Screaming lyrics and jumping around to

all the songs you know and even the ones

you don’t. Paying obscene prices for merchandise

you could probably make yourself.

Being unable to hear much the following

day but still absolutely buzzing. Just the

simple notion of being in the same room as

a performer which you paid more money

than was perhaps sensible to see. A concert

is more than music, lights, and dancing; a

concert is all about the emotions. It is sad

to say that online performances just don’t

fulfill this aspect.

It is important to acknowledge the positives

though. Online concerts are a cheaper

way for us to support and watch our artists.

‘Live at Kong’ was £15 which is quite a good

price compared to Gorillaz live concert

tickets (starting at £55.) Forbes found that

in September 2020, there were 400 million

people paying for streaming services

which is 100 million more than in 2019.

There is no denying we have all turned to

music in this trying time so if we have the

Image courtesy of Ben Whalley

time and pennies, then maybe we should

start attending these online performances.

The lights and special effects are typically

incredible with artists wanting to give the

best show they can. You get to support

the performers you love while watching a

pretty snazzy show. What else would you be

doing with your night in lockdown?

Taylor Swift: Making Grammy History

Neha Gupta

DEPUTY MUSIC EDITOR

March 14th 2021 may have seemed like

another day in lockdown for most of us,

but in the world of music, it marked the

63rd Grammy Award Ceremony. There were

many incredible takeaways from the night,

including Harry Styles’ first Grammy win

for Best Pop Solo Performance and Megan

Thee Stallion winning Best New Artist. One

of the most significant moments, however,

was Taylor Swift’s historic Album of the

Year win for her eighth album Folklore,

making her the first woman to win this

award three times.

helped brand Folklore

as a new Swift era. The

album takes on its own

identity, diving deep

into emotions in an

earthy, grounded way.

She further explored

and solidified this new

sound in the equally

surprising release of

Evermore, Folklore’s sister

album in December

2020, giving her fans a

much-needed pick-meup

towards the end of a

very turbulent year.

Image courtesy of taylorswift via Instagram

Photo courtesy of @taylorswift via Instagram

I might not be a hardcore Swiftie, but credit

where credit is due - she knows how to keep

listeners engaged. Releasing Folklore back

in July 2020 in the midst of the pandemic,

Swift surprised fans with her unexpected

album after but a day’s notice, simply taking

to Twitter to announce that ‘in isolation

[her] imagination has run wild and this

album is the result.’ Folklore marked a new

shift in Taylor Swift’s sound, with alternative

folk being prominent throughout the

16 tracks - although the album title gives

that one away really.

The change in the tone of this album

compared to some of her previous upbeat

pop tracks and heartfelt ballads really

Taylor Swift hasn’t always

been let off lightly

by the media in the

past, being infamously

branded as a serial

dater and therefore often being brandished

as a negative role model for girls: a washedout

view that somehow still manages to

manifest in today’s society (see Swift’s

backlash against comments about her in

the new Netflix show Ginny and Georgia).

This in itself is deeply problematic and is

definitely something worth unravelling in

its own right. Yet the negative stereotypes

she has faced throughout her career have

notably not held her down, with her previous

work showing evidence of her fighting

against negative assumptions of her

- take Reputation as a prime example. For

someone who was faced with barriers and

shaming throughout her career as a young

female artist, Taylor Swift’s constant ability

to rise above the media and produce music

that evidently speaks to millions across the

globe is something that honestly deserves

nothing but praise.

Her Album of the Year Grammy marked her

as the first woman in history to have

achieved the award three times, following

her wins for Fearless (2012) and 1989

(2016). Her release of Folklore last year not

only marked a shift in her sound as an artist

but also produced a welcome relief for her

fans during a global pandemic and proceeded

to make history whilst still in the

midst of the pandemic. We might not all

like her music, but there’s definitely

something to be taken from her resilience,

both as a singer-songwriter, and as a young

woman right under the spotlight, and this

Grammy award serves to prove just that.


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M U S I C

Interview with GROUPLOVE’s

Hannah Hooper

Angus Warrender

“It’s to release that tension we’ve

all been holding.” - Hannah

Hooper of GROUPLOVE on the

pandemic, parenthood and their

new album This Is This.

Hannah Hooper, lead vocals of GROU-

PLOVE, seems pretty relaxed for someone

who dropped a bomb a week ago.

The bomb in question is titled

This Is This: an explosive LP of

alt-rock headbangers that was

released on the 12th March

– with the only warning being

the release of a single,

Deadline, a day earlier.

Despite the lack of

fanfare, the band

had apparently

been sitting on the

album for a while:

‘Well, we recorded it in

October so [it’s been] a

little bit – you do the math.

We self-funded it and we recorded

it at our bass-player’s

studio in Atlanta. We honestly

didn’t know it was gonna be an

album until we finished recording

the nine songs and we were like: “We

have an amazing album here!”

During the pandemic, most people “accidentally”

baked too much bread or forgot

their masks before shopping - whereas

GROUPLOVE seemed to have “accidentally”

made an entire album. I asked how exactly

that came about.

‘It had been like six months since we’d all seen

each other, since the pandemic started, and

we were just itching to record some music,

you know? And when we got into the studio…

we didn’t have a producer, and a really dear

friend of ours was engineering it, and we just

started recording everything. Predominantly

live, because we wanted this album to have a

“live” feel - I think that’s what we’re all missing

right now - and it was a really fast experience.

Healer took two years to make, and we

recorded this in nine days.’

I mean, yeah, it was definitely

a come-down from a very high

high.

It goes without saying that the pandemic

and subsequent lockdowns have been a

unitedly terrible time for people across the

globe, and many have turned to music in

an attempt to express the feelings of isolation

and loneliness that have become alltoo-familiar.

And in their ten-year tenure in

the industry, GROUPLOVE has never shied

away from heavier subject matter. But This

Is This avoids the darkness – perhaps intentionally?

‘I think that independently, when we write,

our songs can be pretty heavy. But when

we get together in a room there is friendship,

there’s humour, there’s a sense

of relief that we’re all together. So I

think that that all comes in inevitably.

But there is still an angst and a

rebelliousness that we’ve found while

recording this album, and it’s just refreshing

for us.’

tense guitar-shredding, punchy drum beats

and instantly memorable lyrics. It’s hard to

stop yourself from bobbing your head along

to tracks like Primetime or Just What You

Want, and Hooper’s more than aware of

it. She has been speaking with fans online

all morning, and the common thread has

been people appreciating that frenetic energy,

even from the confines of their homes.

Hooper herself has been braving the pandemic

with her partner (and co-vocalist)

Christian Zucconi, plus their five-year-old

daughter. With the pressure of being confined

to the house, I ask if lockdown has

been more of a Healer or a Big Mess –

an enquiry well on its way to winning

“Most Cheesy Question of the Day”.

I think it’s been a bit of both. We

were definitely in a place where

we were ready to tour Healer,

so I think adjusting to the

fact that we were gonna be

parents and artists in the

same three rooms was a

tough time. It’s kind of been

an interesting learning experience

though, where I can feel

I can wear multiple “hats” in one

day now. I thought I could only be

a musician or only be a mother or a

wife, and I’ve found that I can really do

all of that at once. It’s been a rough time,

but we’ve found the light where we can.

I think that’s a sentiment well-reflected in

the album’s

name: This

Is This, a

title dist

i n c t

more track This Is The End. The title almost

seems more hopeful.

That’s the direction we’re heading, towards

hope. We all know what it’s like to feel

bummed out and it’s only up to us to get out of

that state of mind. For us, this album helped

us clear out some cobwebs, and clear out

some pain. Songs like Scratch are aggressive

but in a humorous way. It’s to release that tension

we’ve all been holding.

Even having released that tension, Hooper

and the band aren’t losing momentum.

Even if GROUPLOVE can’t tour conventionally,

they are still making plans for unique

and interesting ways to move forward. She

explains the group’s plans for more creative

and visual outputs, collaborating with

other artists and fans as much as they can,

and a return to her own roots as a performance

artist. Even from home, Hooper

and Zucconi are always working on music.

Their daughter, Willa, has been learning the

drums and joining her parents for sessions

regularly. I worry for Benjamin Homola,

GROUPLOVE’s drummer, as it sounds like

he’s got some competition.

GROUPLOVE will be performing

monthly live streams on momenthouse.com,

with unique setlists

every show. This Is This is out

now on all platforms.

Healer was GROUPLOVE’s previous studio

effort, released just shy of a year ago – just

before the pandemic began in earnest and

forced the band to cancel their upcoming

tour. A gut-wrenching case of bad luck,

one that has been echoed by musicians

worldwide. Hooper, however - with a digital

background of blue skies and pink clouds –

seems to have accepted it for what it was,

now a year removed from it.

Hopefully people are listening, and they’re

headbanging, and they’re jumping around,

and they’re getting it out. Instead of that slow

bedroom-pop that seemed to be trending, I

was like “I want to hear music that I can get

physically get aggressive with.”

If it was the goal, then GROUPLOVE have

achieved that in spades. This Is This has in-

from

t h e

album’s

sopho-

From top to bottom:

Image courtesy of Thorsten F via Pixabay

Image courtesy of Warner Music Group


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S C R E E N

An interview with Zoë Rose Smith,

Editor-in-Chief of Ghouls Magazine

Harriet Fletcher

we are!

Image courtesy of Ghouls Magazine

Zoë Rose Smith, also known as Zobo, is a

writer, podcaster, YouTuber, and self-styled

Queen of extreme horror. She is the creator

of the extreme horror website Zobo With A

Shotgun and the editor-in-chief of Ghouls

Magazine. I spoke to Zoë about the launch

of her new magazine, which provides insight,

analysis, and criticism on the horror

genre through female perspectives. The interview

has been briefly edited for purposes

of article publication.

First of all, thank you for taking the

time to chat and congratulations on

the launch of Ghouls Magazine! Can

you start off by telling us a bit about

the magazine and what led you to

start it up?

I studied journalism at university and I always

knew that I wanted to go into something

to do with horror films. I actually had

a really interesting conversation once with a

guy from Heat Magazine here in the UK who

basically said there was a lot of room for

women in horror and to have female voices

in the horror genre. At that time, I hadn’t really

gotten into the industry yet and I guess

I hadn’t really explored anything to do with

film criticism or what perspectives were

out there. I think it was only over the last

ten years that I really got into horror film

criticism and I think over the last couple

of years I noticed that unfortunately, it was

quite a male-dominated industry. That’s not

to say that I don’t enjoy those perspectives,

because I certainly do, but watching certain

films I was kind of just going, ‘I’d like to hear

a woman’s take on this one’.

One thing that really hit a chord was, and I

love his film criticism, but Mark Kermode.

He actually reviewed I Spit on Your Grave

and called it misogynist and demeaning

to women. Quite a few male critics really

slammed I Spit on Your Grave as being horrible

towards women. And I started asking

around because I watched and found it really

empowering, and it seems like a lot of

people with a female perspective also find

it really empowering. So, then I kind of had

this idea that it would be amazing to bring

together marginalised voices. My original

idea was mainly focusing on women, but

then I found that there was a large trans and

non-binary community that had similar

perspectives that tied into what we call ‘the

female perspective’, which is not necessarily

a woman’s perspective. And then there

was a lot of time in lockdown and I thought,

do you know what, it’s probably time to put

that project together. Lockdown just allowed

Ghouls Magazine to happen and here

The magazine is all

about female voices,

do you have

any favourite horror

films by female

writers or directors?

I do, there’s a ridiculous

amount to mention,

which I think is

quite a funny point

actually because when

you think of horror

there are so many

notable male directors,

which I also love.

When you think of the

big icons, you think

of John Carpenter,

Wes Craven, you don’t

think of anyone else.

But through Ghouls

Magazine, we, fortunately,

have an amazing

team who also

have been like, ‘oh,

did you know this was

made by a female?’. So,

it’s been eye-opening.

I love American Psycho

by Mary Harron.

I really like Mary’s

translation of the book

as a story about male toxicity and I think

it’s really interesting that a female was so

keen on directing a film that’s seen as quite

misogynistic. But I love the film, I love the

character, I also adore the book, it’s horrific

to read and I found out you should not read

it in public places where people read over

your shoulder! I think it’s just really interesting

to see a female direct a film that has such

a commentary on violence towards women.

But I think she handled it really well.

Then a more recent film is Raw by Julia Ducournau.

I adore that film, I think it just

speaks so much to being a female, coming

of age, lust, physical attraction, and also relationships

with other females, especially

sisters and females in the family. It’s probably

one of the most powerful films that have

been made in a very long time.

What’s the best horror film you’ve

seen recently and what did you love

about it?

Recently I actually saw Rosemary’s Baby for

the first time. For some reason, I just kept

avoiding it and convinced myself that I’d

seen it. So, I finally got round to watching it

because it was definitely a blind spot in my

horror watching and I just thought it was

fantastic. I thought that it really looked at

gaslighting. I also thought that it looked at

the fears of becoming a mother and having

a child. I think there are a lot of issues similar

to that which aren’t as explored. I think

they are becoming a little more prevalent in

recent cinema with a film like Swallow, for

instance, that obviously looks at the things

that women put their bodies through, unwanted

pregnancies, our supposed need to

have this perfect life and be a perfect wife,

mother, etc. I think it was really interesting

to see a film like Rosemary’s Baby released

back then that looks so closely at that fear.

I’m not a mother myself, but the thought of

becoming a mother absolutely petrifies me.

I watched Rosemary’s Baby and was like,

‘that’s all the fears I have’. I think as well, it

looks at how women are often painted as

crazy when we have certain emotions that

might be slightly irrational to the people

outside us, but those are the emotions we

feel, especially during pregnancy. You must

feel so vulnerable and so paranoid about

what’s to come, it’s a very life-changing moment.

It just blew me away as a film and I

wasn’t quite expecting it to.

All of those issues go back to why I wanted

to set up Ghouls Magazine. These are issues

that really do affect us and play a lot on our

lives. I don’t think they are spoken about a

lot. When you look at a lot of horror films,

they might not even be talking about these

things directly, but you can take a lot away

from them and go, ‘actually, there’s deeper

meaning there’. That’s such an interesting

point to take away from it. I just love discovering

movies where they have that perspective

that’s so relatable.

Lastly, is Ghouls Magazine open to

pitches? How can people contribute?

We are open to pitches. Anyone can drop

us an email at editor@ghoulsmagazine.com

and myself or our amazing assistant editor

Rebecca will pick up emails and get back to

pitches. If anyone is interested in sending

something through, just shoot us an email.

We never leave our computers anymore, so

we are always online!


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S C R E E N

Marvel’s WandaVision Review – Bewitching and

Visionary

Angus Warrender

One of the smaller side-effects of the

COVID-19 pandemic—besides worldwide

devastation and economic plummets—is

the fact that we will never truly know if

the global culture would have grown tired

of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2020.

After Avengers: Endgame, the season finale

of an 11-year series, you could sense the

“franchise fatigue” setting in. Superhero

films as a genre could still go the way

of the Western: destroyed by their own

samey, oversaturated market. Instead, we

had several months of MCU drought, and

WandaVision was there to greet us afterwards.

Marvel Studios has notoriously been

risk-averse—a presumable by-product of

being part of Disney, a monopoly that literally

builds castles in its conquered regions

across the world—but this first step in the

new era of Marvel series shows a step in the

right direction.

Set three weeks after the explosive climax

of Endgame, the series finds the titular

Wanda and Vision in a rather different

place to where we last saw them—most

notably, Vision no longer has a hole in his

robotic head and is seemingly content to

live out his life as a dutiful spouse to his

magical missus in the decade-hopping

suburbs of Westview, New Jersey. Instead

of saving lives or blasting foes, the pair are

enrolled as the leads in a number of periodpiece

sitcom antics; though not all is as it

seems.

The first few episodes are a slow-burn of

paranoia and suspicion, where even the

most innocuous gesture feels loaded with

sinister intent. WandaVision walks the line

between parody and satire very well, at

once pointing out the tropes of the sitcom

and recreating them with earnestness. The

tension of the series comes mostly from

the supposedly “normal” elements of these

American Dreams: the Coalition smiles,

the hair-too-long pauses in dialogue, the

claustrophobic small town where everyone

seems to know everyone… it keeps the

audience on their toes, perpetually waiting

for the other shoe to drop.

When that shoe does drop, it comes in

the form of Monica Rambeau, an agent of

S.W.O.R.D desperately trying to help Wanda

and make sense of the “Westview anomaly”.

She, along with a handful of other name

characters from across the Marvel mythos,

act as audience stand-ins: reacting appropriately

to the sitcom-cross-horror and asking

the questions we want answers

to. Whilst this aspect of WandaVision’s

story is essential, it is far from

the show’s strength. The S.W.O.R.D

characters can at times feel more

one-note than a studio audience,

their quips too pithy and meta, and

it can detract from the tension of

the show. It’s arguably a positive,

however, that WandaVision’s flawless

aesthetic and gradually creeping

unease feel more grounded than

the outside world.

At its heart, WandaVision is a

character story. When stripped of

the interconnected threads and

bombastic action of the MCU, the

series has a genuine tenderness

through basing everything in the

personal tragedy of Wanda Maximoff. Elizabeth

Olsen gives a heartfelt and powerful

performance in the role, taking full advantage

of the character being given centrestage

for the first time—though not at the

detriment of her castmates. Paul Bettany

captures the humanity of the Vision even

under inches of makeup, Kathryn Hahn is

a delightful presence as she ducks in and

out of episodes, and there are a handful

of pleasantly surprising performances

thrown in throughout.

Verdict: It is safe to say that WandaVision

has staved off the heat-death of the superhero

genre for at least the eight weeks of its

runtime. Subversive, deconstructive and

engaging; it highlights a welcome step away

from the Marvel formula of old.

The Oscar Nominations: A year of firsts and

Image courtesy of marvelstudios via Instagram

the most diverse awards yet?

Tom Roberts

both in the running for Best Picture. Lee

Isaac Chung’s Minari is also nominated in

this category, following controversy at the

Globes, where it was labelled as a foreign

language film and prohibited from a Best

Picture nomination.

The 93rd Academy Awards are due to take

place next month, and the diversity of the

nominations has been a long time coming.

But, after the Golden Globes controversy

last month, where it was revealed that

there was not a single black person in

the Hollywood Foreign Press Association

(which chooses the award’s recipients), it is

promising to see the presence of typically

under-represented groups in the Oscar

nominations. But, is this a time for celebration,

or does the Academy still need to do

more to diversify its awards?

David Fincher’s Mank, which explores

the making of Citizen Kane, leads with 10

nominations, including Best Picture, and

Best Supporting Actress for Amanda Seyfried—her

first Academy Award nomination.

However, given Mank’s relatively poor

performance at the Globes (winning none

of its 6 nominations), and its exclusion

from the writing categories, it’s unlikely to

see many, if any, of its nominations come to

fruition. Unsurprisingly, Netflix has dominated

the categories this year, with a total

of 35 nominations for films it has produced

or distributed, including The Trial of the

Chicago 7 and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, featuring the

great blues singer and her conflicting relationship

with her management, is the only

film to have both its leading actress and

actor (Viola Davis and the late Chadwick

Boseman) nominated. Whilst this is Boseman’s

first Oscar nomination, it is posthumous

due to his death last August, and Davis

has become the first African-American

woman to receive two Best Actress nods.

Also, the Supporting Actor nominations

feature a diverse array of artists, with 3

black actors nominated: Leslie Odom Jr.

(One Night in Miami), Daniel Kaluuya

(Judas and the Black Messiah), and Lakeith

Stanfield (Judas and the Black Messiah).

However, neither Kaluuya nor Stanfield

have been nominated in the Leading Actor

category, which raises the question, who

does the Academy deem the male lead of

the film?

This year is also historic due to its gender

diversity. Emerald Fennell and Chloé

Zhao have received nominations for

Best Director and Best Picture, for

Promising Young Woman and Nomadland

respectively. Both women have

also been nominated for their screenplays,

which makes their chances of

winning Best Picture far more likely.

This is Fennell’s first venture into the

world of feature directing and subsequently

her first nomination in this

category.

Zhao garnered critical acclaim for Nomadland,

winning Best Director at the

Globes. If she replicates this success

at the Oscars, she will become the first

Asian woman to win Best Director,

and only the second woman to ever

receive the award. Fennell and Zhao

have made historic achievements this

awards season and although their

work should be applauded, we should

also be asking why it has taken almost a

century for two women to be nominated

for Best Director in the same year. Nominations

are all well and good, but if neither

Zhao nor Fennell wins Best Director, the

Academy will have a lot to answer for.

The achievements of this year’s nominees

Image courtesy of theacademy via Instagram

are impressive, but hopefully, there will be

a time when it will not be ‘historic’ for a

woman or a black person (or any currently

under-represented group) to be considered

by the Academy. The film industry,

and arguably the world, still has a lot more

work to do to ensure that this time comes

sooner, rather than later.


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S C R E E N

RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Season 2: 10

Most Iconic Moments

Harriet Fletcher

While season one of RuPaul’s Drag Race UK

eased us in gently with a light snack, a Baga

Chipz you could say, season two served us

an absolute feast of content. This season

has brought more personalities, looks,

drama, shade, outbursts, and pure chaos

than I could have possibly imagined. It’s not

just the best UK season so

far, it’s one of the best seasons

of Drag Race ever. With

so much to digest, the only

way to review this season is

to take a look back at its ten

most iconic moments.

10. The running order

drama

The stand-up comedy challenge

is always a bit of a

wildcard, but one thing is

guaranteed: the running

order will cause drama.

Ellie Diamond’s strategic

approach that left certain

queens in unwanted positions

led to a bitter saga of

arguments and accusations

that was dragged out over

several episodes. In the end,

the pointless spat about the

running order was funnier

than the actual stand-up

show. I’m with Tayce on this

one – it’s a game, so expect

shadiness. As the judges

love to remind us, it’s not

RuPaul’s Best Friend Race!

9. Ru’s unexplained yellow

wig

In episode five, Ru stepped

into the Werk Room inexplicably

wearing a neon yellow

party wig and Twitter lost

its shit. Was she channelling

Ginny Lemon after her shock exit? Was

she trying something new? Was she just a

bit cold? No one could work it out, but it

certainly made an impact.

8. Rats: The Rusical

Just when you thought you’d overcome the

nightmare of Cats (2019), RuPaul hits you

with Rats: The Rusical. This is by far the

most bizarre musical challenge I’ve ever

seen on Drag Race. Bimini Bon-Boulash

as ‘Depravity’ singing like Keith from the

Prodigy, Ginny Lemon looking like a dishevelled

Miriam Margolyes, Tia Kofi belting

a Rusical version of ‘Memory’ dressed

as a lab rat with a giant ear growing on her

back. It’s the musical we didn’t know we

needed. Watching the guest judge and darling

of the West End stage Sheridan Smith

lapping it all up just made it even better.

7. Tia Kofi’s ‘adequate dress’

Tia’s runway commentary for her ‘adequate

dress’ was the funniest fashion moment of

the season: ‘Vintage? No. Elegant? No. Still

stuck on me? Just about!’. Tia was the relatable

hot mess of the competition, certainly

not the best seamstress but so damn likeable.

Her fashion faux pas can be forgiven

because she’s such a delight to watch.

6. Ginny and Bimini’s non-binary

chat

Drag Race is known for its emotional chats

in the Werk Room. This season, Ginny

Lemon and Bimini Bon-Boulash’s discussion

of gender identity really stood out,

especially as a topic that isn’t productively

talked about on mainstream TV. For a show

that has been criticised for excluding trans

and non-binary queens, this was such an

important conversation to have. It even inspired

many viewers to come out and share

their stories after watching the show. The

power of positive representation!

5. BeastEnders

It’s about time Drag Race tackled the

British institution of the soap opera. As a

lifelong EastEnders fan, I literally screamed

when I found out this was happening. The

outrageously camp drama of soap is a perfect

fit for drag and BeastEnders had it all:

the Kween Dick, Karen Bitchell, Scat Slater.

The vulgarity was totally needless yet so in

keeping with British drag that you couldn’t

help but manically cackle at every line like

a six-year-old at a Christmas panto. There

were more leather jackets and leopard print

miniskirts than you could shake a stick at,

and that’s just Michelle Visage!

4. Ginny Lemon’s punk exit

After landing in the bottom two and having

to lip-sync against her best friend in the

competition, Ginny surprised us with one

final iconic act: walking off with her head

held high. A rarity on Drag Race, Ginny’s

self-elimination gets my respect. The show

can be tough on the queens and sometimes

enough is enough. Judging by her comments

backstage (‘I’m ready to go home,

Babs. I’m knackered!), she did the right

thing, and we love her for it.

3. UK Hun?

The Frock Destroyers

were a hard act to follow,

but the United Kingdolls

gave them a run for their

money. This season’s

Eurovision-inspired

challenge, ‘RuRu-Vision’,

brought us the upbeat

energy we all needed in

lockdown, along with

fierce lyrics, pop princess

looks, and Bimini jumping

into the splits from

a pink bar stool. ‘UK

Hun?’ was such an earworm

that it even Bing

Bang Bonged its way to

number 1 in the iTunes

charts. Drag queens are

fast becoming the new

pop icons and I’m totally

here for it.

2. *That* H&M outburst

In the aftermath of RuRu-

Vision, it was all fun and

games until Ru went full

Tyra Banks. Everything

about this was shocking,

it’s like it all happened in

slow motion. Joe Black

gets clocked for wearing

a dress that looks like it

came from Primark. Joe

cheekily whispers ‘H&M’.

Ru is not amused and

loses her shit. The line ‘I don’t want to see

any f*cking H&M’ now lives rent-free in my

mind.

Image courtesy of dragraceukbbc via Instagram

1. Bimini’s Snatch Game

Snatch Game is the most anticipated episode

of any season and Bimini’s Katie Price

is up there with the best of them. There

is so much comedy gold in these iconic

British huns and Bimini absolutely killed it.

Last season’s Donald Trump and Margaret

Thatcher impersonations were all well and

good, but as the Pricey herself said, it’s

been a hectic year and sometimes I just

want to stay in my trashy, pink, fluffy reality

TV bubble thank you very much.


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S C R E E N

Judas and the Black Messiah: An insightful and

essential character study

Image courtesy of judasandtheblackmessiahfilm via Instagram

Rhys Wright

SCREEN EDITOR

Shaka King’s latest film, Judas and the Black

Messiah, opens with a montage of archival

footage from the late 60s. In it, a Black Panther

proclaims to the camera “Those are not

riots. Those are rebellions. People are rebelling

because of conditions and not because

of individuals. No individual creates a rebellion.

It’s created out of the conditions.”,

words which certainly ring true to this day.

King’s grippingly tense drama offers an insightful

exploration of the politics of race,

power, and revolution through its character

study of the Illinois Black Panther Party

Chairman, Fred Hampton (Daniel Kaluuya),

and the FBI informant tasked with infiltrating

his inner circle (LaKeith Stanfield). The

story opens with Stanfield’s petty thief, Bill

O’Neal, in his Humphrey Bogart costume

and homemade FBI badge as he pretends

to arrest a man so he can steal his car. Once

caught, the FBI asks why the disguise? He

simply responds, “A badge is scarier than a

gun.”

O’Neal is forced to choose between infiltrating

the Black Panthers and prison, so the

initially apolitical O’Neal chooses the former.

Fred Hampton is a fascinating figure.

Played to perfection by Kaluuya, he isn’t

the anarchic boogeyman that FBI Director

J. Edgar Hoover makes him out to be. He’s

an astonishing orator, an incredibly learned

intellectual, and a committed revolutionary.

And at the time of his death, he was only 21.

Much of the film is spent following Hampton

as he attempts to assemble a multiracial

rainbow coalition to reduce poverty and

keep people safe from the police. Hampton’s

murder was infamously orchestrated by the

FBI and the police. And why? According to

Hoover, to “prevent the rise of a black messiah”

who could unite the communist, antiwar,

and New Left movements. The true story

behind the film is certainly one that needs

to be told. And Kaluuya delivers Hampton’s

brilliant speeches with such gravitas and

skill that he has certainly earned every inch

of his Golden Globe for the film.

The constant dread faced by O’Neal keeps

the tension sky high throughout, and his

conflicted loyalties and emotional turmoil

make for a gut-wrenching watch. The film

examines everything

including revolution,

race, policing, intersectionality,

class, performative

activism,

and personal loyalty

with an insight that

makes it essential

viewing. Dominique

Fishback also gives a

stellar performance as

Hampton’s fiancée, in

addition to Jesse Plemons

and Martin Sheen

appearing as part of

the FBI.

With the Oscars set

to take place on April

25th, Judas and the

Black Messiah has received six well-earned

nominations including Best Picture, Original

Screenplay, Cinematography, Original

Song, and two for Best Supporting Actor.

But unfortunately, Dominique Fishback

and Shaka King seem to have been criminally

overlooked when it comes to awards

season. Rather confusingly, Stanfield has

been nominated for Best Supporting Actor

(alongside Kaluuya) instead of Best Lead Actor,

but regardless of the category mishap,

hopefully, one of them will be able to take

home the golden statue.

Judas and the Black Messiah is

currently available on video-ondemand.

The Best Foreign Language Series to Watch

on Netflix

Maria Svartvadet Jakobsen

DEPUTY SCREEN EDITOR

In recent years, Netflix has increasingly

invested in international markets, producing

series in languages from German to

Korean. Especially following the success of

Money Heist, Netflix has seen the potential

popularity of foreign TV series and continues

to target non-English markets. With

the increasing options of foreign language

series, these are just some of the foreign

language Netflix Original series you should

give a chance.

Money Heist

Language: Spanish

One of the most popular of Netflix’s foreignlanguage

series, Money Heist (original title:

La Casa de Papel), aired in May 2017 and has

since then gained a huge fanbase. The series

currently has four seasons, with the fifth

season coming in 2021. For anyone who has

yet to watch this treat of a series, I’ll avoid

the spoilers. The series follows an unusual

group of robbers, led by the character called

The Professor, who occupy the Royal Mint

of Spain and attempt one of the biggest robberies

in history. It’s a thrilling series, which

leaves you invested in the characters and

keeps you clicking “next episode.”

Lupin

Language: French

Following the success of Money Heist, Netflix

produced yet another robbery series,

this time the French series Lupin. Although

similar in tone to Money Heist, Lupin is different

from the Spanish series in many ways,

from plot to characters. Instead of a group of

robbers, the series follows one main character,

a gentleman thief named Assane Diop.

Like Money Heist, questions of justice are

central to the plot, but Lupin is also significantly

more focused on family. This crime

drama is definitely one to check out, with

only ten episodes released so far, and a part

two hopefully on the horizon sooner rather

than later.

Ko-

Kingdom

Language:

rean

It’s perhaps not an

uncommon opinion

that zombie

apocalypse series

have been overdone.

Zombies have been

done in almost every

context, subject, and

genre, yet Kingdom

manages to bring

an interesting twist

on the topic. Forget shotguns to the head,

Kingdom sets its zombie apocalypse in the

Korean medieval Joseon period and sets exceptional

moments, incredible pacing, and

gory scenes against a rich culture. With two

seasons, and a third on the way, Netflix’s

first Korean series is a refreshing take on the

zombie apocalypse trope, and it’s a mustwatch

if you enjoy genuine scares and gory

zombie attacks.

Dark

Language: German

Following on with the theme of the thrilling

series, the popular German series Dark

is one to check out for any science fiction

fans. The series follows a group of characters

from the small fictional town, Winden,

as they search for the truth after a child’s

disappearance. It’s a series largely revolving

around the concept of time, time travel, and

time fluctuations, as well as secrets. Like the

name implies; the series dives into the dark

past of families and generations of the small

German town, uncovering conspiracies and

dark secrets. If you like tense and terrifying

mysteries, this sci-fi noir series might be for

you.

¡Nailed it! México

Language: Spanish

If you’re tired of tense thrillers, dystopias,

and crime dramas, and you want something

more light-hearted and fun to watch, then

Netflix’s Nailed It franchise is one to check

out. The series is a reality bake-off competition,

where the contestants are amateurs,

leaving for sometimes messy, but always

funny results. Netflix has produced a variety

of different international spin-offs of this series,

but the Mexican one is one of the best.

Featuring smashed piñata cakes, tequilainfused

cocktails, and telenovela-inspired

challenges, this baking show is a fun, easy

watch for when you need something more

cheerful.

Image courtesy of lupin_netflix via Instagram


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F A S H I O N & B E A U T Y

Collaboration: a few reflections

Rhian Daniel

FASHION & BEAUTY EDITOR

The popularity of logos is by no means a

new phenomenon, in fact, I remember writing

about them for SCAN a few years ago; it

is clear that the need for belonging to, for

want of a better word, a clan is natural in a

period of extreme uncertainty and it something

that is perhaps unexpected in the current

climate. However, can this really exist

in such a contradictory way to the growth of

reselling platforms, small businesses and of

course, increased concern about the impact

of the fashion world on climate change?

I don’t think anyone will ever find high-end

brands irrelevant and especially for the

large proportion of the world’s population,

the glamorous fashion houses will be the

epitome of elegance, sophistication, opulence

and beauty forever. The wealthy may

be able to treat Chanel as their local Primark

and nothing can change that, however, what

will the post-Covid world, a world with a

fair amount of people preoccupied with the

balance between climate, social justice and

looking good for social media, look like for

fashion?

There seems to be no shortage of collabs

launching, H&M being among some of the

most memorable in terms of high streets

brands. The success of this model is evidenced

by the fiscal advantages that come

with not only directly increased sales but

also brand awareness perpetrating new

audiences that either party wouldn’t have

been able to successfully breach otherwise.

The cynic in me would leave it there, observing

the increased sales associated with

collabs as a chance for people to belong to

a group they wouldn’t have ordinarily been

able to. They are, of course, fertile ground for

haul videos and other social media marketing

techniques, a brilliant way to boost sales

in every way; but is this all they can be?

Image courtesy of Northern Ireland Office via Wikimediacommons

Here, perhaps we should reflect all the

way back to 2019 when Meghan Markle

launched her charity capsule collection

for Smart Set. Her comments on the inspiration

behind the initiative demonstrates

something profound about fashion:

‘People can say that so much of Smart Works

is about the clothes themselves but it’s really

not … all of that stuff is the exterior but it’s

what it does for you on the inside that ends up

being the best accessory. It’s the confidence,

it’s what is built within, that is the piece that

you walk out of that room with and walk into

the interview with.’

However, though this may be true and the

success of it has impacted the lives of many

women looking for work, instead we should

look at the framework of the collaboration.

Instead of the usual schematic of just two

brands working together, generally of very

different price points and meeting in the

middle, this collection incorporated four

brands: John Lewis & Partners, Marks &

Spencer, Jigsaw and Misha Nonoo. Each

sold their own addition to the collection

meaning that they were able to benefit from

increased sales without having the burden

of making a huge amount of stock; better for

sales as well as the environment.

Vogue Business commented on this:

‘(Priced between £19.50 and £199 and available

in sizes from 6 to 24, the Smart Set was

designed to be accessible and inclusive)’

This cross-retail approach could become a

blueprint for other celebrities who don’t want

to align too closely to a single partner. It also

allows brands to enjoy the celebrity’s halo effect

without having to produce a significant

amount of inventory’

‘Diversification of distribution is just the evolution

of the traditional collaboration model,

and it will probably be

adopted by more celebrities,’

says luxury

brand consultant Ana

Andjelic, adding that

the right celebrity partner

is key’

If more companies

adopted a similar approach,

it could revolutionise

the way that

the fashion world

works. Though the celebrity

collaboration

model is just as effective

as the union of two

brands, the difference

here though seems to

be that Meghan Markle’s

name attached

to this project was not

just about her selling

a bunch of clothes that, for example, PLT

had made; but to attach her name across

the brand. A few select items are enough to

draw attention to high street names without

the production issues and likewise prevents

the problem of traffic simply just going to

the page of their collab.

Beyond the financial incentives as well as

being environmentally friendly, it could

mean greater inclusivity and diversity. With

multiple brands being prepared to share

their image, it means that brands who are

notably lacking in promoting a message of

equality will lose out hugely: sales instead

go to those companies who are doing the

right thing.

The point that I would like readers to take

away, is that it would be nice to see the fashion

industry uniting more. I began by setting

out the deep contradiction that seems to be

in place between the small business and the

large high street brands, with luxury companies

seeming to orbit a completely different

planet however, maybe that is what

we should be calling the industry to do - to

unite. With fierce rivalry comes an ignorance

of its consequences and that is what

encourages unhealthy habits, for us and for

the environment.

Image courtesy of @smartworkscharity via Instagram

I have always seen Depop and Vestaire Collective

as a virtual high street, or perhaps

more accurately, the closest we can come

to virtually shopping down the lanes in

Brighton. It would be sad if the High Street

were to fade away but in the times of Covid

perhaps the best we can do is try to think

of online shopping as close to physical shopping

as possible. Let us browse and not

panic buy and perhaps restraint will help

the fashion companies to do something

similar - wouldn’t that be a good outcome

of Covid? If the fashion industry could learn

to unite, perhaps adopting some of the ways

discussed here then maybe it will be possible

to envisage a world where we can feel

fashionable, look our best and not destroy

society and the earth in the process.


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F A S H I O N & B E A U T Y

Isobel Dignum

DEPUTY FASHION & BEAUTY EDI-

TOR

Since the O.G. lockdown this time last year,

I have had an even more unhealthy relationship

with Instagram than before. Instagram

is by far my most used app, so I’m going to

share a few of my favourite influencers and

content creators with you.

For those of you who have recently watched

‘Married at First Sight Australia’ season 6,

you may be familiar with Martha and Michael.

Martha Kalifatidis is stylish, sarcastic

and vibrant with a cool and colorful feed.

Her posts make me really want to go to Bondi

in Australia, even more so after watching

the 3-year-old show. Her outfits are iconic,

introducing me to new designer brands I

never knew I needed. Dion Lee, Nanushka

and Ganni. This Prada queen gives me

powerful women energy, helping me stay

positive about anything related to body,

beauty and skincare; a little escape from

Covid-lockdown UK to sunny Australia.

Top fashion influencers you need to follow!

Sophia and Cinzia are my next pick. Their

cool and trendy content relaxes the mind,

looking like all the Pinterest boards I have

created. Their Instagram content again has

introduced me to new brands particularly, @

JeanVintage, a luxury vintage sourcing company

where I purchased a Christian

Dior Blazer for a great price. I don’t

usually love YouTube-based influencers

however, the videos these

girls create are so real and interesting

particularly their Amalfi Coast

Vlog from last Summer 2020. The

girls also have their own podcast

and clothing line, ‘The Girls Bathroom’.

I would recommend watching

a few of their videos. You will fall

in love with this duo!

If you’re a fashion lover like me

then your Instagram feed probably

consists solely of brands, models

and runway pages. One of my faves

to add is supermodel Adut Akech.

Her page speaks for itself ! It’s flawless,

iconic and her beauty and style

make her an influencer everyone

must follow! She has been seen on

literally every runway, in Vogue and is one of

the top ten highest paid models.

I can’t share a list of top influencers without

mentioning Miss Molly-Mae Hague. If

I’m honest, I have only very recently started

following her on social media. This is because,

in general I dislike Love Island or UK

reality TV stars content apart from the odd

few from the Made in Chelsea cast such as

Melissa Tattam or Sophie Habboo. I personally

think their content is a bit over the

top and fake, however Molly-Mae produces

‘real’ content. With all the hate and stigma

surrounding her, she is open, honest and a

businesswoman. Someone to look up to for

many young teenagers in particular.

Image courtesy of @adutakech via Instagram

On a side note, it is important to follow influencers

who give you a positive attitude

and outlook on the world. Social Media is

fake, and I think this is important to disclose,

because young people look up to these

top influencers thinking that life promoted

through edited and photoshopped pictures

are real life, but this is not the case. My top

picks I hope show a little bit of reality and I

highly recommend giving them a follow.

Image courtesy of @adutakech via Instagram

Ripped Jeans: the Seat of Rebellion

Rhian Daniel

FASHION & BEAUTY EDITOR

There has long been a history of using

fashion to make political statements in

India; perhaps among the most memorable

is Gandhi wearing a dhoti to have

tea at Buckingham Palace in protest

at Britain’s role in the decline of India’s

textile industry. Once again, women in

India have returned to this most powerful

statement in order to protest recent

comments made by an Indian chief

minister in the Bharatiya Janata Party

(BJP) government.

Chief Minister Tirath Singh Rawat was a

speaker at a workshop organised by the

Uttarakhand State Commission for Protection

of Child Rights, where he spoke

of his deep shock of meeting a woman

wearing ripped jeans. He remarked that

her moral virtue was compromised and

that because she was a mother and running

an NGO (non-governmental organisation)

it was not right for her to wear

such clothing; worrying about the type

of lessons that would teach her children.

Though the comments about this particular

woman are indeed shocking,

he made a wider comment about the

lack of values in society as a whole and

according to The Print, he spoke of

how children are ‘following strange fashion

trends and consider themselves to be

big shots after wearing jeans ripped at the

knees. Women also follow such trends’.

His comments were slammed by other

politicians and his fellow minister and colleague,

Smriti Irani, who called it a ‘faux pas’

and continued that ‘no one in their enlightened

mind will make that statement.’ She

is not alone and women have joined her on

social media, posting pictures of them wearing

ripped jeans with the hashtag #Ripped-

Jeans briefly trending.

The minister has since apologised for his

comments, however, the backlash has yet

to be retained and many have used this as

further ammunition to criticise his and his

parties’ views. Not simply has there been

criticism of the blatant sexism and policing

of women and their bodies but ripped jeans

have, in some ways, come to symbolise free

speech in general.

It should also be added that his apology was

not a retraction of his comment but rather

he said sorry for any hurt he may have

caused. He maintained that ripped jeans

and other apparently needless trends are

corrupting society, stating that he believes

in protecting children from intoxicants and

other evils. He added that a lack of discipline

is exemplified in the ripped jeans and

he commented on how many young people

cut their own jeans.

Ripped jeans have thus reclaimed their rebellious

history. In recent years, they have

become a cult staple of celebrities and influencers

worldwide, muting their mutinous

origins. So, as more women take a stand

across India they not only join a long-standing

history of using clothes to take a political

stand but are also remembering the origins

of rebellious ripped jeans in the 1980s.

The women of India have shown that they

will not take the minister’s comments lying

down, once again protesting how comments

like these propagate the misogynistic belief

that a woman’s worth is determined by what

she wears. So, perhaps it is time we all dig

our ripped jeans out and stand in solidarity.

Image courtesy of @levis.vintage. clothing via Instagram


scan.lancastersu.co.uk | Twitter @SCANLU | Instagram @scanlancaster | facebook.com/SCANonline Week 21 - Week 22 | 25

Spring is officially here. Blossoming early

this year, along with all the snowdrops and

daffodils, the sun seemed to be premature in

Lancaster. Often the sun is more than welcome,

however, if your wardrobe is in need

of an update, then the uninvited heat may

be a few weeks too early. What can be even

more daunting than the early rays is deciding

what trends to choose this spring, with

an abundance of alluring options out therestyles

from ‘cottagecore’ to ‘Parisian chic’.

Being mindful of the current lockdown situation

we still find ourselves in, adding a little

colour to your wardrobe is especially needed

now, and brighter days brings brighter

outfits. Here I’m sharing my spring wardrobe

essentials, where to shop and what to

buy for SS21

Lightweight Jackets/ Blazers

Never failing to impress and my favourite

shop, not only for its affordability but also

for always providing the latest trends, is

Zara. Year after year I wear my Zara blazers

and jackets, owning more than I would like

to admit, whilst still being tempted every

spring to buy the whole new collection.

This year is no different. The pastel shades

of pinks and blues add that much-needed

colour to any outfit, whilst a classic white

blazer brings some sophistication; Zara has

the complete range.

Wide Leg Jeans

F A S H I O N & B E A U T Y

“Brighter Days Brings Brighter Outfits”: Where

to Shop and What to Buy this Spring

Lily McGahern

the mini skirt leaves it so you can choose

After most people spent the previous year your favourite. One of my favourites has

in loungewear (and are still struggling to to be the white tennis skirt, with Urban

get out of it), it is time to get those jeans Outfitters and iets Frans offering the ultimate

mini skirt.

out again ready for emerging into society.

Comfort doesn’t have to be lost, and with

the perfect pair of wide-leg jeans, it really Fashion trainers

isn’t. & Other Stories, although favouring

the expensive end of the student budget, offer

a great range of jeans, most popularly the

‘Treasure Cut Cropped Jeans’.

Cardigans

Both Instagram and Vogue are all about

cardigans this season, with an amplitude of

celebrities sporting the perfect knits, specifically

matching twin sets. Being a wardrobe

staple, the cardigan is ideal to wear on

cooler spring mornings. Once again having

a rather 90’s vintage feel to them, cardigans

this season are extremely pretty, with floral

embroidery and lace collars. ASOS is another

go-to, with cute floral sage green cardigans

being amongst the array of pastel hues

they have to offer.

Mini Skirt

SS21 is the comeback of mini skirts. Although

never one to really go out of fashion,

they are more popular than ever this season.

Paired with knitwear and boots at the start

of spring, then come the warmer months

with camisoles and sandals, the mini skirt

fits the whole season. With the choice of

classic denim resurfacing the 90’s trend,

A primary part of a spring wardrobe has

to be a chic pair of trainers. The best way

to differentiate between actual exercise

and outdoor socialising, they are comfortable

and easy to throw on in that inbetween

time where the weather doesn’t

permit sandals. There are the classics

that don’t seem to age, such as Converse

and Reebok’s, with New Balance being a

classic which supermodels such as Kendal

Jenner have been sporting this season.

Another popular brand for SS21 is Veja,

being eco-friendly and fair-trade, hence

the slightly higher price, they are also extremely

stylish.

Image courtesy of @andotherstories via Instagram

Importance of Kering & Investment in Vestiaire

Collective

Isobel Dignum

DEPUTY FASHION & BEAUTY EDITOR

Everybody loves a little bit of luxury...

The desire for elegance, high quality craftmanship

and brand identity.

At the heart of the luxury industry is, Kering.

The iconic global luxury goods company,

owning world-renowned brands such

as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, and new Instagram

favourite, Bottega Veneta. Brands

loved and adored by many.

In a changing luxury consumer market, and

a need for luxury to become sustainable following

criticism, it is great to see the business

side of the industry taking the initiative

to differentiate itself and make a change.

They state, “Luxury and sustainability are

one and the same”, with sustainability being

at the epicentre of Kering’s brand strategy.

I love this! But I must ask, how obvious to

individuals is the sustainability initiative in

the luxury industry? Can the industry do

more? The big difference between luxury

and fast fashion (other than of course the

price tag!) is the investment... Yes, it’s about

lust and impulses but as Caroline de Maigret

made clear in her book ‘How to be a Parisian

wherever you are’ (a must-read I might add),

a designer investment lasts a lifetime.

On Monday 1st of March 2021 Kering alongside

Tiger Global

Management announced

a new $216

million US dollar

investment for the

very popular Vestiaire

Collective. This

is fabulous for the

pre-owned fashion

industry, accelerating

its growth even

more than it has in

the past 3 years. Sustainable

fashion and

second-hand market

have been seen all

over TikTok and Instagram

reels since lockdown. It’s a great way

to purchase designer brands and items you

love such as Prada, Alexander Mcqueen and

Ralph Lauren but on a budget price under

the retail mark-up.

Designer clothes are an investment. Vestiaire

Collective’s strategy to expand the lifespan

of timeless classics is triggering positive

change in a dominant

industry. It is

significant that Kering

is investing time

and money in companies

such as this,

as it results in high

profile popularity

for sustainable

goods. Personally

though, I believe

and strongly advocate

that Kering

and other powerful

companies should

invest and focus on

the smaller luxury/

vintage pre-owned businesses. My favourite

that I’m constantly raving about is JeanVintage.

This is a sourced luxury goods service

for great prices. Shouldn’t the luxury industry

be helping these individuals?

Coco Chanel stated, “Fashion passes, style

remains”, a quote I live by. There is a clear

need for driven change and innovation in

this global industry, powerful since 1995.

With the impact of the digital revolution

making the luxury experience easy and

unique and, in some ways, more affordable

it will be interesting to see if the pre-owned

luxury industry will take flight. Hewi, Farfetch

and even luxury goods for hire are

becoming increasingly popular. Kering’s

investment is the key to success in a more

demanding fashion industry.

The Road to Luxury is still changing but it

seems to be heading in the right direction...

Image courtesy of @vestiaireco via Instagram


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F A S H I O N & B E A U T Y

A Review of the Film of the Chanel Fall/

Winter 2021/22 Ready to Wear Show

Lily McGahern

Acquiring front row seats at a Chanel fashion

show is usually reserved for fashion’s

elite, but in these virtual times, as a result of

the pandemic, we can all obtain the luxury

of an intimate show. Virginie Viard’s new

Chanel Fall/Winter 2021/22 Ready-To-Wear

collection was unveiled on Tuesday 9th

March at 10.30am Parisian time. Differing

from past shows, with them usually being

held at the expansive Grand Palais which is

currently closed for renovations, Viard opted

for more intimacy.

Left Bank nightclub Castel was the perfect

place to offer coziness, with it boasting multiple

small rooms that the models used as

part of the runway, giving the feeling of a

tiny English house. Moreover, the club has

been the epitome of cool since the 1960s, enticing

the likes of Mick Jagger and Amanda

Lear. The features of the club are risqué but

have elegant and arty details, making the

show bold and incredibly Parisian. Virginie

Viard on her choice of Castel, ‘I like Castel

so much for its many salons, the spiral staircase,

its bar, the journey through this venue,

its little house style, where the models can

get changed, dressed and undressed, do

their make-up together, and have fun like a

girls night in. It’s very sensual.’ The choice of

housing the show in a nightclub also highlights

her ability to tap into what younger

people want, with the lack of nightlife currently

adding another dimension of longing

to the show.

Artistic director Viard went off-piste with

her lively Coco Neige collection, mixing aprè

skiwear with Parisian chic; ‘this collection is

a mix of two influences,’ Viard said in a press

statement. The collection is cool and effortless,

being well executed with clean cuts. The

clothes and style of the show allowed Viard

the chance to travel through the world of

Karl Lagerfeld and Chanel’s heyday, with her

recreating shows Karl told her about that he

staged in the ‘70s, with girls getting dressed

on their own in restaurants in Paris.

Fall/Winter 2021/22 offered ski suits embroidered

with the house’s signature interlocking

double Cs, voluminous puffer coats,

metallic party dresses coupled with shaggy

moon boots. Layers of jewellery and flashy

belly chains add to the collection, although

often I did feel the accessories were misplaced

and could have been used more sparingly

taking away from what the outfits had

to offer. Other pieces in the show conveyed

more traditional Chanel looks, from the contrasting

knits to tweed suits and coats, being

the signature fabric of the French fashion

house; these were bound to triumph. Viard

does offer an update on the classic tweed

coat, making it oversized, whilst adding

panels of sequin fabric to the longline tweed

cardigans. The fusion of strong tweed and

fragile chiffon everywhere in the collection

seemed to be inspired by the renowned style

of long -time Chanel muse Stella Tennant, a

Chanel icon who died in December 2020.

The presentation of the show was in black

and white, however, the collection was filled

with different textures of quilt and tweed,

whilst featuring pops of fuchsia, mustard,

sapphire and lilac. Ultimately this made the

collection feel like when a minimalist and

maximalist get together, and the union produced

was wondrous.

The show was shot and directed by duo

photographers Inez and Vinoodh, who

played spectacularly with the glamour of

Castel, whilst pulling through the models’

individuality to the clothes. Inez Van Lamsweerde

said that ‘the girls dressed up for

themselves, had a show for themselves and

felt strong and beautiful together’, bringing

a feeling of empowerment to the catwalk.

The show featured 20 models as opposed to

the usual 80, making the atmosphere of the

runway match Inez’s statement, of models

doing the show for themselves.

Beautifully matched was the music to the

catwalk, with the soundtrack starting with

‘Do You Know Where You’re Going To’ by

Diana Ross, which Viard regards as remarkably

apt for the moment, with no-one being

able to go anywhere. Diana Ross and Chanel

are forever classics in the world of creativity,

making this match flawless. Mixed by

Michel Gaubert, he perfects the sound so

the models including Lola Nicon, Vivienne

Rohner, Louise de Chevigny, Mica Arganaraz

and Rebecca Leigh Longendyke walk

the walls of Castel to.

Ending the show, Viard’s final look is a gold

trench coat, styled with a felt fedora, a piece

which could have fallen out of Chanel’s previous

‘90s collections sticking true to the

French fashion house’s signature looks. All

of the models gather in the street, bringing

the nightclub to the streets of St Germain

des Près, and are joined by Virginie Viard

to celebrate the Fall/Winter 2021/22 collection.

Image

courtesy of @chaneloffical via Instagram

The quiet power that alludes from Chanel’s

fall-winter collection, even on a screen,

makes us excited for next season. Watching

with no audience does make us long for the

grandiose of the runway, with the Chanel

fanfare being the highlight of every season.

From indoor beaches to merry-go-rounds,

the opulence that the French fashion house

brings every year is notably missing from

the background of this collection. However,

the girls night out vibe that Viard injected

made me excited for the 21st of June and

filled me with as much love for the clothes

as usual, although with a compact runway

their appearance on screen was fleeting.

Hopefully, as the world gets vaccinated and

measures are lifted, we will start to see catwalks

true to usual form and fashion forcefully

returning.


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L I F E S T Y L E

DIY Ways to Celebrate Women’s History

Month

Justine Bondare

The month of March is dedicated to celebrating

the often-overlooked contributions

women have made in culture, society and

wider history in general. First celebrated

to honour the achievements of well-known

women, it has transformed into something

larger, spreading powerful messages about

the strength and resilience of women as well

as important information about the barriers

that women around the globe face today.

Though it is a month to be celebrated, there

are many ways to get yourself involved and

become a part of a movement that encapsulates

more than just a single month. From

acknowledging the role of women around

you to supporting them and making a real

change in your life as well as the lives of others,

there are plenty of resources to help you

get started. In this article, I have compiled a

list of ideas so that you can celebrate Women’s

History Month right!

MOVIES

I’ll start with an easy one - everyone likes

movies, right? Instead of picking the classic

feminist movies such as The Color Purple or

Little Women (which are, no doubt, amazing),

I have listed three movies about women

directed by women. Diverse and delightful

things happen when women are given

the chance to portray their stories authentically,

and it’s an opportunity to rewrite history

often obscured by the male gaze of the

film industry.

day, as it is a

perfect representation

of the hardships

women

face to find

success in

male-dominated

fields.

If you’re not

into sports or

need further

convincing,

the wonderful

Geena Davis

and Tom

Hanks are in

it, too!

However, if

you’re into

period dramas,

you will

love Portrait

of a Lady on

Fire (2019). Céline Sciamma hits the nail on

the head with how she portrays the intensity

of sapphic love whilst acknowledging the

patriarchy constructing the choices of the

two female protagonists.

Finally, A Girl Walks Home at Night (2014) is

about a skateboarding vampire that targets

men who disrespect women. Coined as the

“first Iranian vampire Western”, it is a horror

movie that defies genre and questions

ideas about female rage and consent. Need

I say more?

PODCASTS

Since the pandemic has made drastic

changes in our everyday lives, podcasts have

found their place as the voices of comfort in

our homes.

If your attention span is similar to mine,

check out Encyclopedia Wommanica for

5-10 minute mini-podcasts about women

who have made their mark in history. From

Spanish businesswomen to the daring journalists

of Nazi Germany, you have no excuse

to NOT find the time and learn about these

incredible women.

If you’re looking for something more up-todate

and closer to home, the presenters of

BBC Woman’s Hour talk about current issues

and interview women from different fields,

creating a new space for empowerment and

inspiration.

from the lens of passion and encouragement.

INSTAGRAM

Finally, it’s time to share some of my favourite

Instagram accounts that create socially

impactful content in an attractive and digestible

way.

Impact (@impact) highlights remarkable

individuals of history and the present,

bringing forward a range of topics that are

guaranteed to broaden your perspective.

They explain terms such as “cultural appropriation”

and share advice on approaching

discussions about disorders and disabilities.

If your feed lacks good vibes, Hannah Good

(@hannahgoodart) creates uplifting and

motivational illustrations, and her monthly

pep-talks give you the kind of energy needed

to get through these uncertain times.

For UK-based feminist influencers and creators,

follow Florence Given (@florencegiven),

who makes empowering illustrations,

Gurls Talk (@gurlstalk), a safe space for

women of all backgrounds, and Megan

Jayne Crabbe (@bodyposipanda), a voice for

body positivity.

Finally, Feminist Voice (@feministvoice)

is an account that links all of these topics

into one feed full of diversity and inclusivity.

These accounts really put the ‘her’ in

#herstory, emphasizing the role of women

and addressing the lack of representation of

women throughout history.

So far, I have given you the tools to help

educate yourself and get inspired, but the

work doesn’t end there. I have introduced

you to feminist activists and the messages

they spread, but actions speak louder than

words. You need to use that new knowledge,

build on that awareness and make a

real change to help the women around you

reach their potential. Look for the local

businesses run by women in your town and

spread the word by sharing their posts and

making a contribution. Look up organizations

and charities in your town and donate

or consider volunteering. Finally, tell the

women in your life just how proud you are of

them! In a world where the achievements of

women that many of us look up to struggle

to reach mainstream media or are undermined

altogether, it is easy to lose your voice

and give up. Be the boost that they need, be

the voice that they can count on!

Our struggles don’t disappear with the last

day of March. Transmisogyny, sexual assault,

body shaming, the gender pay gap

- these are all real issues that disadvantage

women and put them at risk every single

day; tackling them together will open up

doors for future generations. There isn’t one

right way to do this, but the moment to do it

is now. Women have a rich history, and they

deserve the present to thrive and feel safe so

that they can build a future of success.

Top image courtesy of matt brown via flickr

Bottom image courtesy of Olena Panasovska via thenounproject

A League of Their Own (1992), for example,

is a fictional account of a real-life all-female

baseball team. It’s a mixture of a feel-good

comedy and real inspiration for women to-

The TED Talks website has also created a

collection of TED Talks about and by women,

covering topics like Black Lives Matter,

global climate activism, online abuse - all


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L I F E S T Y L E

From Sleep to Yoga: The Best Wellness Apps

Lilli Reuss

HEAD OF ONLINE PUBLICITY

Throughout the pandemic, with so much

free time on my hands, I wanted to work

on my physical and mental health. Getting

more sleep, drinking enough water, exercising

regularly, stretching every day, meditating

and so on. To achieve these goals, I tried

out various wellness apps and here are the

ones that are actually worth the money, and

the storage space.

Sleep Cycle

Sleeping is super important for our mental

and physical wellbeing, and I tend to

not get enough of it. Especially in times

of stress, when I have various deadlines, I

tend to sleep only five to six hours (which is

definitely not enough to get me through the

day). So, I thought I would try out this app to

track my sleep and figure out my deep sleep

phases and ideal bed and wake up times.

While this app is ridiculously overpriced,

the trial subscription has already taught

me a lot about my perfect bed and wake up

time, as well as the weird noises I

make in my sleep. If you have trouble sleeping

and just, in general, are curious to track

how many hours of sleep you actually get at

night, I would give this one a shot.

Deliciously Ella

There are various healthy cooking apps, and

most are not worth the money. This one,

however, I actually really love! Ella has written

various vegan cookbooks, and on this

app, you have access to all her recipes, wellness

tips, yoga, pilates, strength and barre

workouts, guided meditations and even a

health tracker. The app itself costs around

two pounds a month, but I would definitely

say it is worth it! Most other cooking apps

are much more limited and more expensive,

plus her recipes are absolutely delicious.

The app even has a function where you can

add ingredients to a shopping list, which is

super helpful!

once a day. I usually follow videos on You-

Tube, but I had heard fantastic things about

this app. Since it has a free two-month subscription,

I thought I would give it a shot,

and I was not disappointed. This app allows

you to completely customise your yoga

practice from length to yoga type, to muscle

group focus to the length of Shavasana.

I usually prefer different types of length

and difficulty throughout the day, and this

app has really elevated and improved my

practice. It also allows you to save certain

practices if you particularly enjoyed them. I

would definitely say this is worth the money,

especially since gyms are still closed at the

moment.

And finally...

Momento

This app has massively helped me reduce

my screen time. It sends you notifications

whenever you’ve been on your phone for a

particularly long time. This has made me

much more aware of the time I spend on my

phone and what I could rather be doing in

that moment. It is also completely free!

Down Dog

I absolutely love yoga and try to do it at least

Image courtesy of Nenad Stojovic via Flickr

What to do with your Easter eggs?

Jennifer Kehlenbeck

LIFESTYLE EDITOR

What to do with your Easter eggs?

For many of you the answer to this question

is obvious: eat them. Don’t get me wrong,

that is definitely what you should do with

them. There is something about Easter eggs

that make them taste nicer than normal

chocolate. Maybe it’s because of the allure

of their limited availability or maybe its

because Cadbury’s secretly uses a different

chocolate recipe, I don’t know. So, I am not

suggesting that you don’t eat them, what I

am suggesting is that you should eat them

differently. So whether you are tired of eating

the same dessert every day (or let’s be

honest, every five minutes) or just want

some ideas of how to make your Easter eggs

even tastier (trust me it is possible!), then

this article is for you.

USE THEM FOR BAKING

egg is chocolate so you can melt it down and

use it to make some brownies or some traditional

Easter nests. You can also use your

Easter eggs (or the accompanying chocolates)

as decorations for cupcakes.

CREATE AN EPIC EASTER EGG BOWL

What’s the difference between half an Easter

egg and a bowl? It’s basically just that one

of them is made out of chocolate. The only

problem with this is that for some unknown

reason it is almost impossible to split an

Easter egg evenly in half, but this is kind of

a necessity.

To create your bowl, you need to split your

Easter egg in half and then put each half in

the fridge. I am a firm believer that chocolate

should not live in the fridge (why anyone

would purposefully want to bit into solid

chocolate I don’t know), but for this, it is

a necessary sacrifice to make sure that your

egg won’t melt while you add things to it.

yoghurt or smoothie! Once you have the

bulk of your egg done you can literally add

anything else you want. You can add some

sweets, marshmallows, biscuits, chocolate

sauce, cinnamon, sprinkles, fruit, nuts… or

you can even add more chocolate.

EASTER EGG HOT CHOCOLATE BOMBS

This is an idea that uses any smaller Easter

eggs you have – preferably hollow! If you

have ever wanted to get on the trend on hot

chocolate bombs but couldn’t be bothered

with all the faff, then this is for you. Using a

hollow egg means that you can skip all those

time-consuming steps and just put some

marshmallows (or anything else you fancy)

inside the two halves. If you don’t have any

perfectly sized Easter eggs then you can jazz

up a hot chocolate in the traditional way:

melt it down, mix it into milk and enjoy!

Image courtesy of Sean MacEntre via Flickr

I thought I would start with a simple classic.

This might not be the most inventive use of

an Easter egg, but you can always use them

for baking. At the end of the day, an Easter

Next, you basically add whatever you want

to your egg… so long as it is cold! The main

thing I would suggest adding is ice cream,

but you can also add something like Greek


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L I F E S T Y L E

Is Having A Flat Easter the New Flat

Christmas?

Jennifer Kehlenbeck

LIFESTYLE EDITOR

Is having a flat Easter the new flat Christmas?

No. Has anyone even done a flat Easter? The

answer is probably also no. Honestly, if anyone

has let me know!

I have certainly never done a flat Easter and

to be honest, I don’t think I have ever even

bought a friend an Easter gift… but maybe

I am just a bad friend. But, you do not have

to be a bad friend like me, you can celebrate

Easter with your friends!

As this year is so crazy already, and Easter is

one of about five things we can celebrate…

why not have a flat Easter. At this point, I am

here for just about any excuse to celebrate

something. So, here I have some advice for

how you can celebrate an Egg-cellent Easter

(or spice up your Easter if you’re ahead

of the trend) with your flat, your house, or

whoever you are currently living with.

First, we have the classic option: have an

Easter meal. Everyone makes a big fuss

about Christmas and organising a big roast

dinner… or the student version of a big roast

dinner, which is almost identical to a real

Christmas dinner, but with Aunt Bessie’s

and Bisto instead of the proper stuff. So why

not do the same for Easter. Organise a big

flat roast dinner so everyone can come together.

Come together, not cook together

(let’s be honest, we all have those housemates

who should not be allowed anywhere

near the kitchen). It doesn’t even have to be

a roast dinner, but it should be something

special (something that you don’t have every

meal… so probably not a pasta dish).

But we all know what the most important

part of Easter is: chocolate. And I have many

ideas about how you can make your flat

Easter as chocolaty as possible. The most

obvious option is to share Easter eggs. You

could buy all your flatmates Easter eggs.

Or if you are the archetypal poor student,

you could go for a Cadbury’s Creme Egg (or

a Maltesers’ Bunny for those weirdos who

don’t like Creme Eggs). You could even do a

secret Santa-style egg swap, although I am

not sure how exciting that would be considering

everyone would end up with the same

thing anyway. But that is an option to make

it even cheaper!

However, Easter doesn’t just involve copious

amounts of chocolate...it involves coppice

amounts of chocolate baking. A great activity

for your flat Easter is to do some Easter

baking. Everyone can get involved even

if they just eat the finished product or are

given the important role of eating the batter

out of the bowl.

Why don’t you go back to year 7 cookery

and make some Easter chocolate nests out

of cornflakes? Or make some chocolate hot

cross buns – although these can be very

time consuming to make so maybe just buy

some. Another classic is to basically just

add Cadbury’s Mini Eggs (or another Easter

chocolate) to a tried and tested recipe. This

is a simple way to make cookies, cupcakes

or even brownies more Easter-esque. But

you can always just make whatever you

fancy, considering the theme of Easter is

chocolate, baking anything with chocolate

can count as Easter baking!

Easter is also one of the few days that it is socially

acceptable to eat chocolate for breakfast,

and while I am a fan of literally just

eating chocolate for breakfast you could go

for a classier option. Maybe you could make

chocolate pancakes or chocolate oats? You

might not be celebrating your flat Easter on

Easter Sunday but who cares, eat chocolate.

An important part of any holiday celebration,

particularly one held by students, is alcohol.

So, your flat Easter should definitely

include some alcohol somewhere: even if

it’s just having a classy drink with your meal

or getting wasted while eating chocolate.

Both sound like a great time, but there are

definitely some untapped Easter drinking

games available. I mean an egg cup and a

shot glass are essentially the same shapes!

Drinking shots out of an egg cup does seem

like a very student thing to do… well actually

doing the reverse (using a shot glass

as an egg cup) gives off sad student vibes.

But, if you make it into a purposeful Easterthemed

sesh, then I feel like it becomes far

less sad.

You can even make classic drinking games

like Ring of Fire more Eastery by making

it Egg of Fire (literally just shape the cards

into an egg shape rather than a ring). With

this logic, anything can become marginally

more Eastery with some simple adaptions.

Though I do feel like an Easter drinking

game needs to also include chocolate somehow.

So, you could make a game where if

you win you eat chocolate and if you lose

you have to drink a shot. This can be applied

to so many different drinking games: the options

are endless.

What’s another thing you do at Christmas:

have a movie night. I would suggest an Easter-themed

film night… but that might be

hard considering there are approximately

two films about Easter. You could also go for

films about chocolate, but again that doesn’t

leave many options (unless you really want

to watch multiple adaptions of Charlie and

the Chocolate Factory). You could go for

other films that are set in springtime and or

give off spring-vibes. But even though there

is a lack of thematic films available, you can

always just eat chocolate and watch any

film. A chocolaty film night is something I’m

always down for.

So, hopefully this article has given you a variety

of tips, tricks and ideas for how you can

celebrate Easter with your flatmates, housemates,

or… even your family. With all these

options you have no excuse to not, at the

very least, attempt to do something Eastery

this year!

Image courtesy of James Petts via Flickr


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L I F E S T Y L E

Appetite Suppressants: What Would

You Rather?

Image courtesy of tamas pap via unsplash

suppressants and their life-saving effects, we

need to discuss the negatives, especially for

young people. Approximately 1.25 million

people in the UK alone suffer from an eating

disorder with over 100,000 people aged 11-

34 years old suffering from anorexia or bulimia.

Despite appetite suppressants having

the benefits they do for fighting obesity, the

risk of enabling eating disorders cannot be

overlooked. With TikTok already under-fire

for allowing the promotion of “thinspiration”

and normalising eating disorders, what

do you think will happen if over the counter

appetite suppressants became normalised

as well? With the Government also planning

on implementing mandatory calorie labelling

at restaurants from July onwards, the

risks surrounding the unconscious encouragement

for eating disorders appears to

have been entirely overlooked. Yes, appetite

suppressants and calorie counting would be

beneficial for those suffering from obesity

but that doesn’t stop those suffering from

body dysmorphia from following the same

path. With unrealistic body standards and

the ridiculous promotion of 1200 calorie diets,

our entire self-worth has been hashed

into eating celery and forcing ourselves to

work out for hours every day.

Tabitha Lambie

DEPUTY LIFESTYLE EDITOR

WARNING: This article will be discussing

weight loss, obesity, appetite suppressants

and eating disorders. These

are all delicate topics and could cause

distress to the reader. If any of these

topics are triggering to you in any way

please be aware and continue at your

own discretion.

“Hot Girl Summer” is just around the corner

so losing that lockdown weight has become

the latest trend on TikTok, Instagram, you

name it. With “fitness” influencers feeling

the need to promote toning up ready for a

lockdown free summer, girls everywhere

are searching for that quick fix to lose a few

pounds whether that be a healthier lifestyle

or something more sinister. We’ve all

seen those 2-week shreds and experienced

the latest buzz about the dreaded keto diet

but have you heard about diet pills? Sounds

pretty neat right, you just take a pill every

day and after 12 months you could be losing

up to 9% of your body weight without doing

anything! You won’t crave or binge anymore.

You won’t have an appetite so when

everyone orders takeout you can finally say

no, good for the bank right? It all sounds

so wonderful and such little effort but is it

natural to pop pills for weight loss?

I think we can all see how appetite suppressants

could become addictive, body dysmorphia

is a rising issue amongst men and

women alike, but diet pills aren’t all doom

and gloom; used in the right way they could

save lives. Saxenda is one of the latest appetite

suppressants recommended by the

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

(NICE) for the NHS to tackle adult

obesity in over a decade. This drug has been

flagged as only prescriptible to adults in

response to the government’s campaign to

fight obesity so won’t be available to children.

Despite this being a prescribed drug,

there is still a great deal of controversy as to

whether this is the right response in tackling

obesity. However, there are a lot of misconceptions

when discussing obesity with

a fair percentage of us believing that it’s

purely a lifestyle choice but for many people

suffering from obesity it’s a medical condition

that can’t be fixed with some fad diet or

exercising every day.

Since 2009, obesity patients have had access

to weight loss drugs particularly Orlistat,

which can be obtained over the counter as

well as bariatric surgery, both of which have

helped thousands lose life-changing weight.

However, these treatments have considerable

side effects; Orlistat can cause nausea,

diarrhoea and it goes without saying that

bariatric surgery has some serious health

risks attached. So, the release of a new and

improved appetite suppressant is a massive

step to improving the short-term treatment

of obesity and helping those suffering turn

the scales especially during the pandemic.

Public Health England has released estimates

suggesting a BMI (Body Mass Index)

over 35 could increase a person’s risk of dying

from Covid-19 by 40%, and that a BMI

over 40 could increase the risk by 90%; these

statistics have been a massive wakeup call

of the real-life side effects of obesity.

So now you know the benefits of appetite

If appetite suppressants were introduced,

millions would be left with an even more

damaged relationship with food as they become

more dependent on the easy route to

that slimmer body. And I’m not just talking

about those who already suffer from eating

disorders but also obesity patients prescribed

appetite suppressants. It’s all well

and good when the patient loses the weight

but how are they then supposed to stay at

that weight without the suppressants? For

many patients prescribed these drugs, their

progress is contributed solely by their suppressed

appetite, remove the suppressants

and there is a high chance the weight will

be regained. Suppressing your appetite is

not the answer to solving obesity and is certainly

not the answer to losing weight. Yes,

you will lose weight but is it healthy or sustainable?

For those amongst us who have struggled

with eating disorders or are struggling to

find a healthy relationship with food and

feel they need professional support, there

are people to talk to. Beat, Mind and Anorexia

& Bulimia Care are among a wide network

of services running alongside the NHS

to help provide people struggling with their

relationship with food a safe space to talk

and share. These services are open to anyone

who is struggling, there is no criteria

you have to meet to qualify for these services,

just because you haven’t been diagnosed

with an eating disorder doesn’t make you

unentitled; these services are for anyone

struggling.


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S P O R T

Sexism Salaries? BBC Sport’s gender pay

disparities.

Tom Jeffreys

DEPUTY SPORTS EDITOR

Recently, BBC Sport released a study of the

gender pay gap in sports. The study covers

48 sports, revealing that 37 of them offer

prize money, and just three of those 37 still

have disparity. This is good progress, but it

would be contributing to the problem to

settle at this and we, as sports fans, need to

reflect on this study to make sure that progress

continues.

Since the BBC’s last study in 2017, several

sports have taken steps towards, or

achieved, pay equality. Squash, wrestling,

surfing and hockey have all achieved parity

in major (but not all) competitions. Most

notably, cricket has used the platform of its

new format, ‘The Hundred’, to make and extend

the progress that has been made since

it achieved equality in the ‘Big Bash League’

in 2019.

Football, however, not only epitomises but

worsens issues. Football is a global game

yet has been going backwards; the UEFA

Women’s Champions League prize pot has

decreased over the last two years, with COV-

ID being no excuse as the men’s rewards

have remained the same. Most recent World

Cups have seen a $34 million difference in

prize money, and FIFA pledges to double the

women’s prize which would still leave a $30

million difference if you naively assume that

the men’s prize will stay the same. There

is simply no excuse for this given that 1.2

billion people watched the 2018 Women’s

World Cup.

Sport often acts as a microcosm of society

and in many ways leads from the front. Everyone

watches and/or participates in it, so

it’s now time for all sports fans to put their

foot down and demand equal pay, as this

will likely have a knock-on effect outside

of sport. A common excuse for pay disparity

is that as long as the money injected

into each gender’s sport is proportionate

to the money made, there’s nothing more

that can be done. This naïve point of view

is dangerous. How can women’s sport be expected

to make the same amount of profit,

when so little is injected into it in the first

place? Furthermore, football, amongst other

sports, don’t even pay prize money proportionately.

The Women’s World Cup prize

money was nine (NINE!) times smaller than

the men’s despite viewing figures being just

three times smaller.

The FA has pledged to use its biggest profit

maker, the FA Cup, to invest in the development

in women’s football. The current

disparity lies at a distressing £1.8 million to

£25,000, so it is our job as fans to not only put

pressure on the FA to keep this promise, but

also to watch and participate in women’s

football, so the money-focused bigwigs are

encouraged to invest further. It is important

to hold those in charge accountable but also

ourselves. The viewing figures of the 2018

Women’s World Cup are staggering, but for

men especially it is no longer good enough

to simply point out that we have watched a

few games, but to positively participate and

engage in it on social media, for example.

Following on from cricket’s fantastic progress,

the BBC released an article explaining

how football can learn from cricket. Firstly,

I’d like to apply this logic to my sport, rugby.

World Rugby has just announced an exciting,

ground-breaking global ‘WVX’ competition,

which, like ‘The Hundred’, will give

a new platform to achieve parity. This is a

huge opportunity that, with a £6.4 million

investment, can build towards bridging

gaps. In the BBC’s article, England Women’s

Cricket vice-captain, Anya Shrubsole, says

that there is no excuse for identical tournaments

to have inequal prize pots, but salaries

should reflect popularity. This makes

sense business-wise and doesn’t contradict

a point made earlier because of popularity,

and therefore the salary will increase if the

prize money is equal.

Most major sports have their major competitions

branded the same for both genders

so there should be no excuse to as to why

the prize money is different. Tennis, for example,

began paying equal prize money in

the US Open in 1973 and now all four Grand

Slams have equality. Now, excluding the

anomalies of Roger Federer, Serena Williams,

and Naomi Osaka, women tend to

earn the same, or more, in endorsements

than any other male player. Moreover, since

squash combined the brands of the men

and women’s tours, turnover has increased

by 236.7% for its governing body, the PSA.

Simultaneously, the female player base has

increased by 36% and their salaries have increased

by 65.7%.

sports from the study) don’t replicate this

approach, especially given the exponential

amount of profit they all make. The business

heads should surely realise that the

more money they offer, the more investment

they’ll get and therefore more participation

and equality in salary. Football has a head

start in that the two World Cups are branded

similarly, which is a platform for equal

prize money that all evidence suggests will

work wonders for gender inequality.

Increased prize money leads to increased

investment, leading to increased popularity,

leading to increased participation and increased

salary. These are crucial steps that,

if taken, can cause wider societal change.

We must hold ourselves accountable and

ask whether we individually do enough to

encourage and cause change, and in doing

so hold those in charge accountable to making

sure that sports cater for basic equality

- which at the moment it fails to do. Whatever

sport you love, make sure you watch

and engage with both genders playing it;

sport is for all to enjoy, so why hold back?

I would also thoroughly recommend reading

the BBC’s full gender pay gap report, it is

certainly eye-opening and expands on some

of the solutions that this article has offered.

Images courtey of Join1goal and Megan

Trace via Flickr.

Tennis and squash have proved that cricket’s

new approach is more than effective, and it

is puzzling that sports such as football, golf,

and basketball (the three worst-performing


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S P O R T

Yorkshire Yoyos: How Yorkshire’s football

teams rarely shine simultaneously.

Sam Stewart

SPORTS EDITOR

This might be controversial at a ‘Red Rose

University’, but Yorkshire’s great. The landscape,

architecture, music, and, of course,

the sport. However, football might not be

what you think of when you think of Yorkshire;

with rugby and cricket being so closely

associated with the area. In fact, football

might not even be what you think of when

you think of Leeds, with the Leeds Rhinos

often outshining Leeds United in recent

years.

Anyway, I promise this article won’t focus

on Leeds too much (as hard as that may be)

and I’ll try to paint a somewhat unbiased

picture of the footballing landscape in this

part of the country.

You might be surprised to learn that the

oldest operating club in the world is in fact

from Yorkshire: Sheffield FC who now ply

their trade in the Northern Premier League

Division One South East League – I know,

it’s a catchy league name.

However, it’s strange that in the last 20 years

Yorkshire clubs rarely seem to be firing simultaneously,

despite numerous teams being

in the top-flight. So, let’s look at this club

by club, but first, here are some honorable

mentions.

Honourable Mentions:

Bradford City have largely bounced around

the lower leagues in English football, with a

League Cup Final appearance (and 5-0 loss)

in 2013 (whilst in League 2) being their highlight

of the past few decades.

Moving southwards, when you type Doncaster

into Google, one of the things ‘People

also ask’ is ‘Is Doncaster rough?’ but let’s

not pull at that thread. Doncaster Rovers

currently play in League 1 and the highest

they’ve ever been in the Championship.

Middlesbrough could arguably be classed as

a bigger club that some others in this article.

However, it’s hard to associate them with

being a ‘Yorkshire club’. Their main rivals

are Sunderland and Newcastle, surely that

says it all. Middlesbrough have a pretty solid

reputation in English football, having only

spent two seasons outside the top two tiers

and they boast an 11-year stint in the topflight.

However, bad job Boro, you just ain’t

Yorkshire to us.

With the honorable mentions out of the

way, forget the Premier League ‘Big Six’, let’s

have a look at the ‘Big Six of Yorkshire.’

Huddersfield Town:

Huddersfield became the first English club

to win three successive top-tier titles, but

relegation in 1972 led to a 45-year absence

from the top-tier. They finally tasted glory

with Premier League promotion in 2017, but

this was short-lived, with relegation back to

the Championship in 2019. Huddersfield

are now battling in the bottom half of the

Championship and don’t look like making a

push towards promotion anytime soon.

Hull City:

Hull’s promotion to the Prem in 2008 might

make younger generations, such as myself,

view them in higher esteem than they are.

Hull have largely bounced around the lower

tiers of the English leagues - often being

close to non-league status. Hull yoyo-ed between

the Prem and the Championship for

almost a decade and were relegated from

the Prem for the last time in 2017 - now finding

themselves in League 1. With Sheffield

United’s promotion coming in the same season

as Huddersfield’s relegation, and Hull

circling the Premier League a few seasons

before, we can see that the Yorkshire sides

missed each other’s moment in the sun and

the Premier League saw no Yorkshire derbies.

Barnsley:

Barnsley’s first promotion to the Prem came

in 1996/97 after 99 years of trying. With a

not-so-glamorous history, why has this club

been included ahead of others? Essentially,

since their takeover in 2017, the future looks

promising. Managers Gerhard Struber and,

recently, Valerien Ismael, have developed a

young, intense, and feisty team who are now

in the playoff places and have put in a tremendous

run of form. With Sheffield United

all but relegated, and a possible Barnsley

promotion on the cards, could we see yet

another instance of Yorkshire clubs missing

out on playing one another in the Prem.

Sheffield United:

Chris Wilder revolutionised Sheffield United

by creating a team with a playing style the

likes of which I’ve never seen before. Wilder

often seems like the average Joe in the pub,

but I’m sure that average Joe wouldn’t be

able to come up with the idea of overlapping

centre-backs – and make it work. They were

flying in the Premier League last season, but

this season, they’ve been drastically hampered

by injuries and are all but relegated.

With Leeds also plying their trade in the

Premier League once again this season, it’s

unfortunate that we’re only getting one season

of this Yorkshire derby in the top-flight.

Sheffield Wednesday:

Wednesday are one of the oldest and biggest

clubs in Yorkshire. However, they haven’t

been in the top-flight since the turn of the

century and are currently fighting relegation

in the Championship. The Owls look a

long way off any success and will be looking

on at Sheffield United, Barnsley and Leeds

with envy. Wednesday are undoubtably a

sleeping giant in English football, but they

run the risk of becoming a footnote in history

with the current direction of travel.

Leeds United:

The biggest football club in Yorkshire. Once

upon a time Leeds were European giants.

Don Revie’s side were a marvel; Howard

Wilkinson’s side won promotion and the

top-flight title back-to-back; David O’Leary’s

young, fearless boys dared to dream in the

Champions League; financial mismanagement

led to dropping through the leagues

and an eventual apathy; but now, Marcelo

Bielsa, Andrea Radrizzani, Victor Orta and

Angus Kinnear have returned the one-clubcity

to the promised land. Leeds look like a

Images courtesy of Adam Wyles via Flickr and Wikimedia Commons

team on the up and, with their fanbase and

commercial potential, one would be ill-advised

to bet against their ascent to continue.

It would be hard for me to say that it doesn’t

make me slightly smug that it’s likely Leeds

will be the only Yorkshire club in the Prem

next season. However, for the sake of such

a great sporting county, I do hope that the

other clubs climb back up. There’s a surplus

of Southern clubs at the top-level and it’s

about time that the Yorkshire yoyos spring

up and reclaim their rightful place…with

Leeds at the top of course.

The best chance of this happening is likely

through a Sheffield United bounce-back

(which seems less likely now Chris Wilder

has walked away) or by Barnsley continuing

their blistering form and grabbing promotion.

Let’s cross our fingers, kick back with a

brew, and hope the Yorkshire lads pull their

fingers out. Or, if all else fails, let’s just hope

Leeds do well ey?


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S P O R T

Eddie Out? England Rugby’s terrible

Tom Jeffreys

DEPUTY SPORTS EDITOR

England has just endured its worst Six Nations

campaign since 1976, with the distinct

displeasure of losing to all of the home nations

and finishing 5th. Despite winning two

trophies and losing just one game last year

(against France), it feels like England has got

what’s been coming to them for a long time,

so what has been behind England’s terrible

form?

Selection

Eddie Jones has always been an enigma in

every sense of the word, but particularly

when it comes to team selection. He said

on England’s behind-the-scenes documentary,

The Next Level, that he hoped his 2023

World Cup would only have 40% of the players

from the 2019 World Cup. However, two

years on and the team to face Ireland had

just three tactical changes from the team

that faced South Africa in the final, with a

further five alterations due to injury or withdrawal.

Whilst England must hold less sympathy

for themselves when it comes to injuries

due to their vast player pool, having key

players such as Tuilagi, Launchbury, Lawes,

and Underhill out in the long-term is a huge

detriment. Underhill in particular is an important

part of an England team that has

defined itself with unbreakable defence – a

defensive reputation that’s testament to Underhill’s

performances.

Nonetheless, hopefully, this abysmal tournament

is the breaking point for Jones to

cease his stubborn relationship with the

media and give in and jump aboard the occasional

hype train, such as Sam Simmonds

or Marcus Smith. Simmonds in particular is

undeniably talented but omitting Billy Vunipola,

especially with no Tuilagi or someone

that can truly fill his shoes, is to omit

the only out and out crash ball carrier in

the side. However, the form Tom Curry has

shown with the ball this year may convince

Eddie that with having three dynamic carriers

in Underhill, Curry, and Earl, you can

overwhelm the opposition with another,

even better dynamic carrier at number 8.

Attacking

England’s temperamental and at times

puzzling kicking tactics cause huge upset

amongst fans. The issue with having a game

plan based on making territory through

winning aerial battles is that, if you are going

to rely on it as much as England does,

you need at the very least a back three who

can all win those battles consistently.

Watson is good, May is excellent, but Daly

simply cannot be relied on. Not only does

his incapability to win in attack hold England

back, but in defence it leaves England

vulnerable. Before an untimely injury, it was

exciting to see Malins get a chance at fullback

and with a more astute running game

given that he is a natural 10 or 15, he seemed

to inspire a less kicking-focused attack plan.

Perhaps the most frustrating thing with the

kicking plan is that when England do keep

the ball in hand, they look very dangerous.

Running rugby with the sporadic poke-in

behind by Farrell or Ford and box kick for

Jonny May to chase suits England’s game

plan perfectly given the talent outside Farrell

and the fact that Jones boasts numerous

forwards that can play the first receiver.

The kicking game plan was also centered

around England being happy to defend

and dominate physically. The contrast of

England’s last two games against Ireland is

startling. Whether the absence of Underhill

is that catastrophic, or if Ireland took their

18-7 loss as a learning curve, England must

also take their own lessons.

Being spoilt for choice in the back row

would suggest that a game plan can be

adapted but England, whilst they kicked

less, echoed their game plan from the Autumn

Nations Cup without a player central

to its execution. Meanwhile, Ireland

adapted by putting CJ Stander at flanker to

accommodate for the extra physicality with

Jack Conan at number 8. Jones showed that

he can successfully fluctuate tactics with

their attractive rugby against France but

has been mostly one-dimensional since the

World Cup. England needs to adapt more.

Kicking tactics are effective with the right

players and consistent execution, but it is

abundantly clear that England doesn’t have

either at the moment and they need to move

on and make the most of players like Odogwu,

Lawrence, Marchant, and more who excel

with the ball in hand whilst actually giving

experience to England’s vast depth.

Discipline

England likes to play on the edge. When it

goes well, the likes of Maro Itoje are hailed

as a Lions Captain and generational talent,

when it goes badly, he becomes a joke. It’s

a line that, when a team is playing coherently

as England has been since Jones came

into the side in 2016, is negotiated in a way

that gives a team huge momentum and

dominance. However, when a team is playing

badly as England has since the Autumn,

everything seems to be going against them,

and England have conceded 67 penalties in

five games this year.

There has been nothing more frustrating,

as an England fan, than watching England

struggle to get a foothold in the game, gaining

good attacking ball in the 22 then immediately

giving away three penalties and

conceding within minutes of having a rare

attacking platform. Playing on the edge is

what previously has set this England side

apart, but when form suffers, players must

learn to play conservatively, because when

you play with no discipline against teams

with kickers such as Biggar, Sexton, or Pollard,

games become impossible to win.

It took until the France game for Jones to

finally take action on this, taking out Jonny

Hill who has almost been as ill-disciplined

as Itoje for the far more conservative Charlie

Ewels. It will be a huge advantage for England

when Launchbury and Lawes are back

as both are extremely disciplined yet prominent

players that accommodate for Itoje’s

risky approach. It was refreshing at least to

see Owen Farrell making a conscious effort

to tackle properly against France and Ireland,

hopefully, the team follows his leadership

and adapt their risk-level to the situation.

Overall, it is reasonable for England fans

to be extremely annoyed currently; there

is a limit to the excuses you can give Jones

and England. But he needs to use a relatively

apathetic America tour to breed new

talent, trial new tactics, and keep true to

his promise to reset the squad. It is not all

doom and gloom, England did indeed finish

5th in 2018 but showed resilience and Jones

showed that he knew when he had to give in

to media pressure with his selection of Cipriani

in the summer. He’s done it before so

let’s back him to do it again, as the players

have said they will.

Image courtesy of Megan Gray - Flickr


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S P O R T

A Pain in the VAR-se: The Pros and Pitfalls

of Technology in Football

Chloe Henderson

DEPUTY SPORTS EDITOR

Frank Lampard’s phantom goal could’ve

helped England progress to the round of 8

if it wasn’t wrongfully ruled out for not being

over the line (the referee and his assistants

clearly should’ve been on the next bus

to Specsavers). However, human error saw

the unbelievable goal ruled out, depriving

England of crucial momentum and, more

importantly, an equalizer. However, with the

sores of the 1966 World Cup final still ringing

true, the Germans could

argue ‘what comes around

goes around’ as in that instance

they were the victims

of controversy in the 4-2

thriller. Anyway, Lampard’s

goal sparked the need for

technological intervention;

goal-line technology was

implemented just 2 years

later. Similarly, continuous

human error sparked the

need for Video Assistant

Referees (VAR) – perhaps

now seen as the younger,

but more disliked, brother

of goal-line technology (any

fellow oldest siblings out

there will agree that the

younger ones are ALWAYS

trouble). Whilst some are

in favour, arguing that VAR

allows a ‘black and white’

approach to football, most

football fans have grown to

loathe the extensive intervention

and problems that

are associated with VAR.

It is not an uncommon

opinion among football

fans that VAR is crucifying

the essential foundations

of the game that we love so

much – romance, passion,

and celebration. Predominantly,

through lengthy delays

(often approaching 2

minutes) and the looming

potential of a VAR intervention after every

single goal. Numerous footballers have expressed

similar concerns, with Jack Grealish

stating that it is simply ‘ruining the game’

and England captain Jordan Henderson expressing

his desire to play without it. Considering

footballers are often slapped with

punishments and condemnation by the

footballing aristocracy for such controversial

expression of emotion, the abundance

of footballers that are expressing concerns

emphasises their frustration.

In a utopian world, VAR would suppress

any debates about decisions, and everything

would be plain sailing in the refereeing

department; Mike Dean would become

less bald and Bobby Madley would lose that

stress-induced weight. Ironically, quite the

opposite has happened, as a meagre 4% of

football fans think that VAR has worked

“very well”. VAR’s main mantra of ‘‘minimum

interference for maximum impact” is

the biggest component that has been undermined.

Also, the only ‘black and white’ decision

involving VAR is that that the emphasis

on minimising human errors has, without

a doubt, fallen incredibly short of expectation.

One of the major instances, where this

happened, was in the Merseyside Derby – a

clash of the highest stakes. Liverpool was

thieved of a typical last-minute goal due to

an ‘offside’ call. Personally, when they have

to use ridiculous lines and look at a screen

for extended periods of time, searching for

a possible microscopic difference it should

not be offside. By sparking a post-match

debate, VAR did the opposite of what it had

intended. Also, the aim of VAR is to provide

a fully objective decision, but the frame rate

of point of contact is not in itself an objective

thing, so this proves it to be an impossible

task. Thus, it is very possible that in

the build-up to Liverpool’s goal, Sadio Mane

was actually onside and this would have a

massive influence on the rest of the game

and may have influenced the result.

For the most part, VAR has proved successful

in punishing instances of foul play that

would’ve been otherwise missed by the naked

eye. There is a slight hesitancy in this

statement though, as there have been regular

flashes of incompetence. As a Liverpool

fan, I am obviously going to mention Jordan

Pickford’s outrageous challenge on Virgil

van Djik, leading to our star center-back being

absent for the remainder of the season

(the word ‘tackle’ is generous – it was more

a kickboxing or muay thai move). Even the

vast majority of rival fans admit it was definitely

a ‘clear and obvious error’ from the

referee, and Pickford should’ve been shown

a red card, but for some reason, VAR did not

intervene. Instead of minimizing controversy,

controversy has just moved from whether

it was a foul or not to whether it was a

foul AND why VAR did or didn’t intervene,

AND whether they got the decision right.

Counterproductive some might state.

Whilst VAR can be scrutinized, it must be

admitted that it is definitely only in the blastula

stage of its development. VAR is often

compared to the more developed technology

used in rugby (TMO), which has now

been widely accepted as a positive influence

on the decision-making process. But, TMO

originally had major teething problems that

took a few years to iron out, so this is definitely

an unfair comparison and shows that

persevering with VAR is likely to eventually

bear fruit.

Furthermore, the Eredivisie

defied orders of the footballing

tyrants, FIFA, by implementing

a margin of error in offside

decisions. By using larger lines

and refusing to intervene in

situations whereby the lines

overlap, it avoids the ridiculous

instances where somebody’s

toenail or armpit rules

them offside. So, ‘going Dutch’

would definitely lead to more

goals and less VAR intervention

– promoting business as

usual in the footballing universe.

In conclusion, it is inevitable

that increasing amounts of

technology will sneak its way

into the game, otherwise, football

will be left in the 1900s,

whilst other sports are propelled

into futuristic dimensions.

However, in its current

state, a VAR review will have to

be made on whether it is currently

suitable for widespread

use or whether it is doing more

harm than good.

VAR CHECK: COMPLETE

VAR DECISION: UNDECID-

ED…

Image courtesy of Footy.com

Images - Flickr

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