TV

Shonda Rhimes’ Anna Delvey Netflix Series Promises to Be the Next “Fyre Festival”

There's a peculiar satisfaction to watching a scam crash and burn.

Producer extraordinaire Shonda Rhimes has just finalized the main cast for a new show about Soho scammer Anna Delvey, and fans are already obsessed.

The show will follow the years-long scam led by Russian-born Anna Sorokin, a woman who told everyone her name was Anna Delvey and ingratiated herself into the New York social elite by pretending she had access to a fake trust fund. She convinced people to lend her indefinite loans and spent exorbitant amounts of money that she gained through a series of intricate lies. Of course, like the best scams, it fell to pieces; in May 2019, she was convicted to four years in prison.

CBS News

Delvey will be played by Emmy-winning Julia Garner, who starred as the fiery Ruth on Ozark. Judging by her performance on that show, she'll be able to perfectly embody Delvey's trickster mentality and charm.

Veep's Anna Chlumsky will star as a journalist determined to capture Delvey's story. Her character will probably be based on Jessica Pressler, the journalist who wrote the definitive New York Magazine story about Delvey's endeavors. Laverne Cox plays a celebrity trainer who gets sucked into Delvey's world. The show will also feature Alexis Floyd as a hotel concierge whom Anna tricks with her charm and Katie Lowes as a woman whose relationship with Anna becomes an obsession.

Another Day, Another Scammer

"It started with money, as it so often does in New York," Pressler's essay begins. In the era of Donald Trump, the Kardashians, and Fyre Festival, it seems like we collectively can't get enough of scammers. We love to learn about people who force their way into the spotlight through non-traditional mechanisms and webs of lies.

But why does Anna Delvey need a TV show that gives her even more fame and attention, one that promises to glorify her high-flying lifestyle even as it portrays its inevitable combustion? Perhaps it's because Delvey is living a new sort of American Dream (or maybe she's living what the American Dream always was—a scam).

Regardless, Delvey's story is very much of the moment, very indicative of what it's like to live under late capitalism in a world where money and confidence are keys to success. "The way Anna spent money, it was like she couldn't get rid of it fast enough," reads the article. "Her room was overflowing with shopping bags from Acne and Supreme, and in between meetings, she'd invite Neff to foot massages, cryotherapy, manicures." This could be excerpt out of a postmodern novel, as could the whole story, full of unnecessary products that no one really needs. It's going to look beautiful on TV.

Just like we can't get enough of products, it seems we can't get enough of scammers and their stories. "Anna looked at the soul of New York and recognized that if you distract people with shiny objects, with large wads of cash, with the indicia of wealth, if you show them the money, they will be virtually unable to see anything else," the seminal article finishes. Apparently the same goes for us, and TV: Distract us with an intoxicating scam, make us think we're outsmarting the capitalist system we're actually buying into, and you have a hit, or possibly a president. I, for one, will inevitably be tuning in.


Culture News

Kanye West's Presidential Run Is Great News for Donald Trump

"Better late than never" may not apply in this case...

On Saturday, in a strange celebration of Independence Day, rapper, producer, and sneaker mogul Kanye West announced his intention to run for president in 2020.

As in, this year. Right now.

The announcement quickly prompeted messages of support from Kanye's wife, prison reform advocate Kim Kardashian West, as well as from billionaire weirdo/Grimes baby daddy Elon Musk.

Of course, this news comes well past the filing deadline for independent candidates in several major states—which means that unless a political party randomly decides to nominate him, Kanye's name won't appear on those ballots. As deadlines in other states approach—with little apparent effort to gather the petition signatures required—Kanye is officially joining the long, proud history of vanity presidential campaigns. Unfortunately, that's a lot more dangerous than it sounds.

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CULTURE

This Week in Internet Hell: The "Wokest" News Channel and More Human Feces

A tiny horse, a black dress, and Batman enter your search bar.

VectorStock

Are you under-employed and under-Woke™?

Are you eager to discuss pop culture like Space Ghost and The Outer Limits? Do you say "fuck it" and shit in the park instead of waiting for public restrooms? Then congratulations, you've had a great week on the Internet. Excuse the rest of us while we bounce between enjoying the early spring and feeling like an asshole.

1. Important Quiz about Toledo's Finest News Channel

This could be:

A) Performance art

B) Definitive proof that American exceptionalism is a myth

C) A Chinese psy-op designed to make American youths contemplate suicide

2. The Crime and Punishment of Being Online

One of this week's shining Twitter Moments updated us on Anna Sorokin, the 28-year-old Soho Grifter who conned her way into New York's social elite by posing as a German heiress. Her lawyer, Todd Spodek, confirmed to GQ this week that he'd hired celebrity stylist Anastasia Walker (known for her work with Courtney Love and G-Eazy) as a "courtroom stylist."

Spodek justified the decision with complete seriousness: "It is imperative that Anna dress appropriately for the trial. Anna's style was a driving force in her business and life, and it is a part of who she is. I want the jury to see that side of her and enlisted a stylist to assist in slecting [sic] the appropriate outfits for trial. However the logistics of dropping off trial outfits at Rikers Island doest [sic] not work in our favor. Thanks."

Anna Sorokin, aka the Soho Grifter, is using a courtroom stylist, GQ reports twitter.com

3. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Instagram

This is a video of Arnold Schwarzenegger chasing a small, thick horse on a small, thick bicycle. He used Tik Tok to make "Should Have Been a Cowboy" the backing track to this inexplicable footage. At the end of the video, Arnie gives the lil' steed a bite of a carrot. Climate change will be irreversible in 11 years.

4. Craigslist Is for (Somewhat Skilled) Writers

Firstly, all the best job ads are posted on Craigslist. Second, all the best Los Angeles job ads are posted on Craigslist: New York. Third, only the most competitive job ads offer "no pay" as compensation for "some" skill.

Craigslist - Manhattan - Gigs - Writing Gigs

"Do you love all things pop culture plus have some writing skill?

We are looking for people who want to take part in the launch of our new content platform. We're a bit like a gamified YouTube that offers videos and blogs.

Our difference is creators can charge micropayments for their content and viewers get automatically rewarded.

We are looking for writers to do:
Best of
Worst of
Show Recaps
Comic/Film/Series/Music analysis and more

We're open to letting you write what your passionate about!

During our beta testing you will receive your name in the byline of the article but no pay.

After beta you'll be able to earn money in two ways:
1. We hire you to keep writing for us
2. You charge micropayments for your articles ($.01 - $.05) and keep 100% of the profit

This is great for people who love to write and want to built an audience on a new platform.

We are based in Los Angeles but you can write from anywhere! If interested please send a little bit about yourself and a writing example that is pop culture based.

Thanks!"

5. Predating the Infamous Florida Man, Beware the Florida Woman

In the case of a "Florida Woman Accused of Spreading Human Feces on Picnic Tables, Grills Before Child's Birthday Party," the Sarasota County Sheriff's Office arrested Heather Carpenter, 41, on charges that she "spread human fecal matter on picnic tables and grills at a local park ahead of a child's birthday party. The act was reportedly in retaliation for a professional dispute at the school where Carpenter worked as a substitute teacher."

Newsweek


Meg Hanson is a Brooklyn-based writer, teacher, and jaywalker. Find Meg at her website and on Twitter @megsoyung.


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