Before we get into this roundup, I would like to issue a formal apology to my loyal readers (hi, mom!) who I can ONLY assume have been waiting for the next popgirl issue with bated breath.
At the end of March, I retired to the land of tacos and wildflowers (also known as Texas in the Spring) and decided vacation took precedence over writing my monthly recap. But all breaks, virtual or otherwise, must come to an end. So, I’m back and pop-ier than ever! In this roundup, I’m covering all the notable things I was watching, reading, listening to and just generally loving in the months of March and April.
It’s like Christmas in July came early, I know. Let’s dive in!
More delightful than Tom Hanks and Victor Garber improvising together.
March was the last month of my self-induced 90-day social media detox, and instead of completely unplugging as one might expect, I got very into The Valleyfolk. I’d never heard of Sourcefed and only vaguely remembered BaratsAndBereta, but there I was, watching hours and hours of Your Show. Described as “the lovechild of Joe Bereta, Steve Zaragoza, Elliott Morgan, and Lee Newton,” The Valleyfolk is (to me) what happens when comedy goes right. Also, friendship!
Romance is a Bonus Book (2019)
*Stefon voice* This kdrama has everything: A publishing company run by a wacky yet endearing CEO, the beautiful moon, Lee Jong-suk’s permanently cracked lips, intrigue surrounding a famous author, a green onion plant, the Gangnam Leopard, best friends who also date, and did I mention books and people who love books?
Unicorn Store (2019)
“The most adult thing you can do is failing in what you really care about.”
Brie Larson’s directorial debut is made up of everything good and right in this world: color theory, glitter paint, and a great wardrobe. Also the message of resilience and personal growth. Chef’s kiss.
Queer Eye (S3)
Do you ever cry? This show is full of so much pure, top-of-the-line sincerity and generosity that it is difficult to take in large doses… but always worth the sugar rush.
Life Itself (2018)
Full disclosure: This movie is a trip. It takes you on a journey through multiple characters’ lives and ties them all together in a semi-cheesy manner, but I loved it. Pitch-perfect airplane entertainment in my opinion.
Robin Hood is always a good time! JK, I know this is more cut and dry con-artist shenanigans than robbing the rich to give to the poor. Still, Imposters hits all the right notes, with a bumbling found family coming together to take down the bad dude, Parker Young’s face, and a plot that (usually) stays one step ahead of the audience. I’m sorry to see it end.
I’m just a girl, sitting in front of her laptop, asking you to go see live theater. Last month I impulsively bought tickets to see Hamlet at the Shakespeare Tavern® (a playhouse in Atlanta that ALWAYS puts on a good show) and it was a treat with a capital T. I love watching theater kids shine onstage, pouring their heart and soul into the thing they love most. Also Shakespeare = a permanent pop.
What I listened to
Sara Bareilles released her sixth studio album at long last and it does not disappoint. Fast faves: ‘Poetry by Dead Men,’ ‘Armor,’ ‘Orpheus,’ and ‘Saint Honesty’. I made one of those nifty diagrams of all the songs and how they align because I have waaay too much time on my hands.
The This Might Get Weird podcast, consistently funny content that is perfect for the mid-week blues. Cheers, Grace Helbig and Mamrie Hart! Pomplamoose’s cover of ‘Shallow’ that made me remember how much I love their early tune ‘Expiration Date’. Kacey Musgraves’ Golden Hour, which is just perfect. And on another Grace Helbig pod, Not Too Deep, I watched/listened to her hilarious “conversation between friends” with Joe Bereta & Elliott Morgan (of The Valleyfolk, wow, full circle!) and insightful interview with Chelsea Handler.
What I read
Mary H.K. Choi’s Emergency Contact, a true gem that made me want to eat a slice of cake. Two LGBTQ YA reads that tackled loss and death but also living life to the max: We Are Okay by Nina LaCour and They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera. The haunting story of how a mini-cult of college students began after a student’s father moved into her Sarah Lawrence housing and Jezebel’s questioning of a detail readers missed out on in the initial piece. Required reading for all Star Wars fans: The Princess Diarist by the inimitable Carrie Fisher. James Holzhauer is a menace. Curtis Sittenfeld’s You Think It, I’ll Say It anthology. Why Do All Millennial Companies Look and Sound the Same? Note: In early April, I read and LOVED an interactive Ceros original on millennial “Blands” (Casper and Burrow, for example) that has since disappeared from the Internet, which calls to mind Casper’s litigious past. #ConspiracyTheory
What I wrote
Over at HUM: A guide for what to do when your CEO doesn’t trust content marketing, ways to get your website back in shape, and St. Paddy’s marketing tips you can use all year-round. And on the home-front, pre-vacation Katie penned Honest #OOTD.
It lacks flavor.
A Star is Born (2018)
I guess people love being sad? Most of A Star is Born was a miss for me because I don’t usually enjoy Oscar bait-y titles and generally speaking, I want to watch things that are uplifting or fun or if I’m lucky, a mixture of both. Yes, Gaga and Cooper have undeniable onscreen (and offscreen) chemistry. But I don’t find the “hardcore” alcoholic musician and insecure, singer/songwriter ingenue romance particularly compelling. Don’t @ me 🙃
Pop of the Month
Like I said earlier, I went to Texas in March/April. The purpose of the trip was to visit my dearest twin, but I also got the chance to have a fried avocado taco on two separate occasions. My kingdom for Atlanta to open a Torchys!