Monthly Favourites #8 (April 2016)

I would like to give myself a pat on the back. Why? Because I have been blogging (somewhat regularly) for the past few months and I have not missed a monthly favourite so far this year! I might actually complete one of my goals this year.

Film – The Jungle Book (2016)
I went to see The Jungle Book on its opening weekend with one of my best friends. I wasn’t disappointed! The story follows the Disney’s original animation closely (it does stray from it on the odd occasion) however, I cannot comment on how loyal it stays to Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book as I have not read his collection of stories.  The animation for this film is on point (or fleek, whatever the kids of today say) it flowed seamlessly with Neel Sethi acting as Mowgli. Credit where credit is due, many of the characters in this film where given a bit more depth than the original animation. It can be a little scary at times so I wouldn’t advise taken the tiniest of humans to see it. The character I strongly relate to is Baloo, naps are very important!

The Jungle Book

Soundtrack – Hamilton (Original Broadway Cast Recording)
Everyone and their mother has been going on about how good Hamilton the musical is and after hearing all the cries about this musical I finally took a listen. I am on this bandwagon! I am desperately waiting for it to official come to the West End because I will buy all the tickets! It is hard to summarise what Hamilton is about when you are British but it is the story about the man on the $10 bill. The soundtrack is an infusion of hip hop meets musicals and it works so well. Just give it a listen on Spotify you won’t be disappointed.

Hamiltion

Video Game – Fallout: New Vegas
I have had FNV for under a year and since I have been doing these monthly favourites, I have never mentioned the video game. Well recently (still currently)I have been on a bit of binge with the video game and I just want to take a moment of your time to tell you how good it is. Set in a post-apocalyptic world (this follows the same as the previous Fallout games). In this version your character is a courier who was to deliver a package to New Vegas, however the character was attacked and left for dead in a shallow ditch just outside a town called Goodsprings . After the local doctor saves your life, the game beings as your start your journey. All of your actions and how you complete quests give different alternative ending, so depending on how you play depends on the ending. There is a lot of love for Fallout and I can see why, it might not be the game for everyone but if you are into decision making and role play this could be the game for you.

Fallout new vegas

YouTuber – Markiplier
After spending some time off YouTube, this year I finally came back to the video sharing platform (blame the dissertation). I have been watching different YouTubers here and there, one of my recent favourites is Markiplier. Markiplier is one of the most popular content creators on YouTube as of right now he has over 12 million subscribers who watch his lets plays. Mark also dabbles in sketches, challenges and the occasional vlog; he also has a super cute dog called Chica. Mark is extremely humble and grateful for the success he has had and I think that is why he is so appealing to millions of people. The video I have linked to is not a let’s play but one of the challenge videos he has done, it is a little NSFW with some of the swearing but it is hilarious to watch.

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Going Solo

A week ago today I attend my first gig on my own, I didn’t see any friends at this gig nor did I plan to meet up with anyone (which I have done in the past) I was flying solo this time. The concert in question was 5 Seconds of Summer at the First Direct Arena in Leeds.

I have been a fan of 5sos for roughly two years so it was only natural when they announced their UK tour last year that I wanted to go, however, there was a small problem. No one wanted to go with me. After at least three days of going back and forth between various friends I decided to bite the bullet and just get one ticket for myself, to hell with everyone else. By three minutes past nine on a Friday morning, I had one seated ticket for 5sos. A feeling of happiness flooded over me, I was going to see a band I really enjoyed and I managed to get a ticket with a decent seat.

Over the recent months, there was a worry that I would stand out like a sore thumb and it would be an awkward experience for me. However, I am happy to report it was far from that! I had a great time, my seat was fantastic and I really enjoyed myself. No one asked me why I was alone and yes, it would have been fun to have someone to freak out when the band did certain things but really I didn’t need someone because I was having so much fun seeing one of my favourites bands live.

The concert made me think more about doing things alone, it may seem daunting at first but actually its fine. In the next few months my only close friend in my hometown is moving away, I don’t go out that much as it is but there is a worry I might become even more of a recluse than I already am. However, I might be somewhat more confident about doing things on my own after my recent positive experience. Who knows I might start going to the cinema on my own!

So I ask you what do you prefer; going along with friends to things or going solo? Let me know in the comments!

5sos collage

A Sudden Burst of Creativity

This is going to be a short update blog post of shorts. Over the past week or so, I have had a lot of ideas hit me with what to blog about and what videos I would like to do on YouTube, so if there is more than the weekly blog post from me just go with it. I don’t know how long this burst of creativity will last for but I am really enjoying the feel of it at the moment.

As I previously stated I am starting (again) to post videos on YouTube, I do have aims to be more regular with the updates. The video this week is a rambling video about the education system in the UK, it actually ties in nicely with a blog post I wrote a few months ago about being a graduate and the lack of opportunities. Despite the rambling of this video, I am really happy with, it wasn’t forced and it might not get views but it is something I am passionate about. Feel free to check the video out and let me know what you think!

The Price of Fame! (Meeting Your Idols)

We have all dream of the day we meet our idols. They could be superstar athletes or world-class musicians. You meet them at the supermarket or at signing and they are everything you would hope they would be. What you don’t expect is the £150 price tag to meet them.

In all industries be it film, music or TV, fans these days want to meet their idols/favourites. Over the years, it has become increasingly harder or difficult to meet them, so most fans these days tend to pay a price to get a glimpse of their idol. At conventions, it is very common to find ticket/package deals to meet your big name stars, which I have no problem with. At this year, upcoming Asylum 16 (Supernatural convention) for a photo op with either Jensen Ackles or Jared Padalecki you need to pay £85, which is expensive but from what I have seen and heard about the photo ops it is worth it. However, when it comes to musicians and photos ops for me things are very different.

Busted have recently reformed and if you want to meet the three guys (this is for an exclusive photo of you and them) you will need to cough up £160.Yes, you may get other bits and pieces thrown in but still that is a lot of money. 5 Seconds of Summer (who I am off to see later this month) ask fans to pay around £110 for a ‘Soundcheck Package’ which because of the wording I am not sure you will even be able to get a picture with the band. Prices like this are not uncommon in the music business and frankly, it is disgusting. Whoever has the biggest wad of cash gets to meet their idols, what about the people who don’t have the funds?

Is there a reason to why the prices are like this? No, not really. These fans have been behind your music for years and yet still want more money from them just so they can say I have met so and so.  Is there an alternative? Yes, there is.
Signings and waiting outside the venue are relatively cheap ways to meet a band. However, the moments are often brief but from my experience, they are some best moments.
Up next is fan clubs, for several years I paid either £25 (this was for merchandise) or £5 to join The Hustler Club (All Time Low). My membership allowed me to get pre-sale tickets, exclusive merchandise and if I was lucky enough a perk for the gig in the form of an early entry or on two occasions a meet and greet with the band themselves. I am thinking about re-joining THC because whatever they do, they do it well.
Lastly is lottery idea. Conventions such as Summer In The City and Vidcon are fans of this system. From what I can gather you submit a list of people you wish to meet and it is all entered into a lottery system. You either get lucky or you don’t, it is mostly fair and I don’t believe you have to pay for this perk.

Ruo Reynolds of Enter Shikari summarised the whole pay to meet your idols beautifully in a few tweets.  “These bands are exploiting their fans. Everyone is beginning to think paying to simply meet another human is acceptable. It’s madness.” Bands should appreciate fans, not charge them. It shouldn’t be a luxury to meet your favourite band but sadly in today’s world it is.

Monthly Favourites #7 (March 2016)

Hello all! Did those of you who celebrate Easter enjoy the holiday? It was a bank holiday in the UK but I was working so it did not really affect me, but I think I am paid extra for working the bank holiday. I hope you all got the chocolate and eggs you wished for, I got a chocolate egg, which was delightful. Now onto this month’s favourites, this year is flying through!

Film – The Departed
After seeing Leo win his Oscar in February, I’ve been wanting to watch a film with Leo in for some time. I decided against Inception (which I have seen more than enough times) and had a mooch on sky movies and found The Departed! Like most things, I am very late to this great film. It has action and suspense rolled into one. Leonardo DiCaprio and Matt Damon are fantastic as the two leads (both are the respected moles in the Mafia and the police) and Jack Nicholson provides us with a chilling mob boss. I got give props though to Mark Wahlberg as well.  For those of you who have no clue about The Departed it is a cat and mouse game between DiCaprio and Damon both are trying to find the moles. All I will say is the end has a great twist that I didn’t expect.
the dep

TV – Grantchester/Game of Thrones
Granchester is a detective drama on ITV set around the Cambridge area in the 1950’s. Local vicar Sidney Chambers (James Norton) has a taste for solving crimes and often teams up with DI Geordie Keating (Robson Green) to help solve said crimes.  Grantchester is on its second series and Sidney appears to be struggle with the line between what is right morally and lawfully. It is a great little series with some amazing talent, if you find yourself with a few hours to spare I would advise checking out the series.
Game of Thrones. I FINALLY caught up with the series! Now let’s roll onto season six, later in April.

Clothing – High-waist jeans
After recently discovering I needed to buy some new jeans, I was on the lookout for a decent pair. With the help of a friend and trying a range of jeans on I discovered the miracle that is high-waist jeans. Not only are these comfy jeans but the tuck in my tummy and make my bottom look great, I know understand why some many women love a good pair of high-waist jeans. The pair I got are here if you are interested.

Song – Catfish and The Bottlemen// Soundcheck
A bit of a hipster(ish) song but I am really digging this song this month.

So that’s it for favourites this month, short but sweet! Do you have any favourites let me know in the comments!