Culture Feature

Beyoncé’s 2020 Recap Shows the Power of Black Joy

Beyoncé walks the walk when it comes to showing up for the Black Community

Beyonce and Kelly Rowland in the music video for "Brown Skin Girl"

In the background of Beyoncé's 2020 recap video on Instagram plays her song "Bigger" from the Lion King soundtrack, The Gift, and later, her visual album Black is King.

The song is an ode to community, a meditation on our collective belonging to a larger whole. The lyrics point specifically to Blackness — Black belonging, Black community. Beyoncé sings: "Bigger than you / Bigger than we / Bigger than the picture they framed us to see," acknowledging the limited scope of Blackness acknowledged by larger American society.

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Jaden Smith "Cabin Fever"

In 2020, certain songs broke through the noise, connected us through our grief, and sometimes helped us remember the meaning of life.

From Fiona Apple's fractured-jazz ode to her middle school heroine to Bob Dylan's 17-minute number 1 hit, the songs of 2020 veered towards the nontraditional but were ultimately more memorable for it.

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Ellen in her apology video

Proverbial "cancel culture" is not new, but it reached its zenith in 2020.

Everything was fodder for canceling and nobody was safe. People had the time to comb through old tweets and Instagram posts, while new content was prolific from every celebrity whose projects and vacations were paused.

From irresponsible pandemic comments and behavior to more serious unearthings of racism, 2020's cancellations ran a wide range when it came to who and why.

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2020 was a strange and strained year in so many ways.

Every aspect of culture has had to adapt to shifting circumstances. But cinema in particular — an institution based on the idea of large groups of people sitting in a tightly-packed room for two hours — had to adjust.

Schedules for both production and release have been continually disrupted, and despite efforts to convince audiences that they can feel safe returning to theaters, most have stayed away — and they are right to. As a result, a lot of great movies fell through the cracks.

The critically acclaimed Minari, for example, only saw a limited digital release for one week, with a theatrical debut scheduled for March. And the much anticipated News of the World is currently screening in theaters — even though Tom Hanks was the first famous face of the coronavirus pandemic.

With that in mind, it was a strange year to review cinema, but these are the best movies that felt safe to see in 2020.

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Culture Feature

How "Tiger King" Changed Pop Culture: The 8 Worst Things We Watched in 2020

Every morning after watching Tiger King, we woke up and chose chaos.

Sorry Pete, this wasn't good

On or around March 2020, human character changed … or whatever Virginia Woolf said.

In the middle of March, COVID in the US went from an abstract concept to an immediate reality which people reacted to in varying degrees — I won't go into details; you were there. For most of us, there was some kind of lockdown period and still are some restrictions.

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Culture Feature

7 New Year's Resolutions for America to Get Its S**t Together in 2021

We're crossing our fingers that the US finally found its rock bottom in 2020.

Hey, America, you okay?

Because honestly...you're not looking so good. We know that 2020 was a rough year, but you haven't exactly been doing yourself any favors with how you've handled it.

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