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  • Writer's pictureChris Mads

Friday Zeitgeist: Lion King, Sam Smith, Hallowe'en, Kevin Spacey

Welcome to my first Friday Zeitgeist.


zeitgeist ˈzʌɪtɡʌɪst/ noun the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas and beliefs of the time.


This aims to capture the spirit and mood of the last week by looking at eight things people have been talking about. Why? Well tonight a few of you will head to the pub with friends or colleagues and chat about the week that was. Over the weekend you will meet people for coffee or drop by to see family members and chew the cud. Maybe you will be relaxing at home with a loved one just talking nonsense and catching up on things which are not dishes, work days and whose turn it is to walk the cat.

Either way, so much happens in the world and our lives that some things are certain to fall through the net. So here is a run down of a few things you might want to be able to nod knowingly about.

1. Stranger Things

This is the biggest TV show on the planet right now.

Netflix has released Season 2 and I guarantee one of your friends or family will have binge-watched it. If you haven't got involved with the adventures of Eleven, Will, Dustin and their crew as they deal with the challenged from Upside Down then you are a step behind. It has disappearing kids, super-powered kids, teenage angst, fraught parents and it is brilliant. Despite great turns by Winona Ryder as Joyce and David Harbour as Hopper, the kids are the true stars of this one.

What you want to say: "I did freak when I saw the shadow monster looming at the end though."

2. Sexual Assault

Really, if this makes you go "what now?" you need to be watching the news. Harvey Weinstein was all over it the last couple of weeks with accusations pouring out from all quarters and this week Kevin Spacey has been in the spotlight. Early in the week he apologised over accusations he behaved inappropriately towards a teenage boy 30 years ago, since then the end of House of Cards has been announced and more people are speaking out about it.

3. The Lion King

Photo from Disney on Twitter

You're right, it's not 1994. Disney are remaking the iconic film as a CGI update, in a similar vein to their

Jungle Book remake which starred the vocal talents of Idris Elba and Scarlett Johansson, among others. This time Donald Glover (aka Childish Gambino) and Beyonce are taking on the lead roles of Simba and Nala, with Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar and Seth Rogan as Pumba. James Earl Jones is, mercifully, returning an Mufasa.

4. Hallowe'en

Photo from Tatler's Twitter account

If you were surprised by the number of youngsters out and about early this week then you might have missed the fact it was Hallowe'en. The mini ghosts and ghouls asking for candy were out and about on their 'trick or treat' rounds and the celebrities were attending hihg-profile parties. The talking points? David Walliams got in hot water for dressing as North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Un at Jonathan Ross's party. He was joined ther by Nicole Scherzinger as Cleopatra and Alan Carr as Gemma Collins. Justin Timberlake and family dressed up as Toy Story characters, Zayn was Spider-Man and Heidi Klum hosted her shindig as the werewolf from Michael Jackson's Thriller video.

5. New York Terror Attack

Photo from NYPD

On Tuesday afternoon a truck drove into a crowd of people in New York city, killing at least 8 people. Sayfullo Saipov, 29, has been arrested following the attack which ISIS have taken responsibility for. The Mayor of New York Bill de Blasio has slammed the attack as "cowardly".

6. The Great British Bake Off

Photo from GBBO on Twitter

Per my previously discussed spoiler rules, I make no apology for discussing who won.

Stuntwoman Sophie took home the prize at this year's cooking extravaganza. The Channel 4 incarnation of the show, which sensationally switched from the BBC after last year, has done well with crowd favourite Liam stealing the nation's hearts. But the big headline this year was new judge Prue Leith - she replaced Mary Berry - who accidentally posted the winner of Twitter before the show aired.

7. Sam Smith The Thrill Of It All

Photo from @SamSmithWorld

Singer Sam Smith's new album dropped this morning. He has told the New York Times the songs were inspired by the end of a relationship and there are some truly heartfelt lines in the music on offer. The Guardian review said: " There’s a certain power to The Thrill of It All, but it could have been a much more potent album if they’d laid off the polish just a little."

8. Star Wars hype builds

We are about a month away from the release of the next Star Wars film and new footage and rumour are building all over the internet. With questions building over what will happen as the story continues - who is the "big bad"? Who are Rey's parents? - new footage showing Luke on the Millenium Falcon hit the web and then star Mark Hamill started trolling fans by pointing out poster were putting both Rey and Luke in the looming "Darth Vader position".

#news #culture #tv #film

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