MUSIC

"Glitter and Glory": Heidi Montag Is a Christian Pop Singer Now

After a third listen, it bops in the same way Rebecca Black's horrendous "Friday" captivated the nation.

Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock

Over the last decade, Heidi Montag has gone from teen pop "Overdosin" to Christian pop's "Glitter and Glory."

After a seven-year hiatus from making music, she's back to shed light on the difference between "glitter and glory" on her latest single. Yet, her over-stylized, over-produced, and auto-tuned song makes the reality TV star sound exactly the same as she did almost a decade ago. After a third listen, it bops in the same way Rebecca Black's horrendous "Friday" captured the attention of a nation.

Montag is known as a D-List celebrity who spent over two million dollars trying to become pop music's next Britney Spears. But now she's back on The Hills reboot and making inflammatory comments. She recently came under fire for comments during an interview with Vanity Fair, concluding that the cast is diverse simply because they "don't all look the same." She continued, "I mean Audrina has dark hair, Mischa has darker hair. But yeah, we're California girls and it's a group of friends."

The song calls back to a time when Montag didn't understand the dark reality of D-list fame, like that time Montag bought into the "glitter" so much that she almost died after undergoing ten plastic surgery procedures or when she partied too hard to find her "glory." Of course, the song doesn't get into the nitty-gritty details—or anything of substance, really. It's the kind of song California valley girls might sing along to at Hillsong Church.

Listen to "Glitter and Glory" below:

Glitter and Glory www.youtube.com

In the United States and other developed nations, world leaders use taxpayer dollars to travel privately for vital conferences, international interventions, campaign events, and yes, even vacations.

A month ago, Prince Harry sat down with Jane Goodall to discuss issues that were important to the royal couple, including the environment and its conservation to combat climate change. Since then, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been vocal about their intent to only have two children in order to decrease their carbon footprint. Yet, on Monday, news broke that the pair went on a much needed holiday by traveling on not one, but two private jets. News outlets soon began shaming the pair.

With Meghan's birthday on the 4th, the couple began their festivities at Frogmore Cottage before jetting off in a private plane to Ibiza, Spain. After six days of relaxing in the sun by the sea, the family took a different private jet to Elton John's vacation home in Nice, France.

The general public called out the couple's supposed hypocrisy and even calculated the amount of carbon emissions from their travels. Elton John has since spoken out defending the couple. He noted that he'd paid for the jet in order to ensure their safety and utmost privacy on their way to his home. Knowing the Duke and Duchess care deeply about the environment, the singer made sure the flight was "carbon neutral." Carbon neutral flights make sure that the carbon emitted by planes will be redistributed to the earth through the carbon offset projects, such as planting trees.

Controversy surrounding celebrities who fly on private jets isn't anything new, but Meghan and Harry aren't just celebrities; they're royalty. Similar to world leaders, they contribute positively to the world with their activism and charity. And unlike former presidents of the United States, there is no expiration date to their public service. Remember, being a royal doesn't have term limits. On the other hand, our former presidents receive access to Secret Service for the rest of their lives after serving their term(s) as a civil servant. Plus, they're protected by the Former Presidents Act of 1958, which covers travel for former presidents and two of their designated staff members. For reference, in 1969, the General Services Administration cut back on spending to a million dollars per year, per former president. Even though former Presidents tend not to spend that much anyway, why shouldn't the royals be afforded a fraction of that same treatment and protection?

After all, the Duke and Duchess need privacy; their lives can depend on it. While the existence of royalty may feel unnecessary and frustrating to a portion of U.K. taxpayers, the couple's decision to dedicate themselves to that service entitles them to a certain amount of security, which includes private travel.

For those who accuse the pair of being hypocrites about combating climate change, then call your government officials hypocrites, too—Or worse, some of our elected officials (i.e. our current president) don't even believe in climate change.

TV

​How Colton Underwood Tried to Beat "The Bachelor" System

His recent interview on "This American Life" blatantly undermines viewers' trust in the franchise, especially its producers.

ABC

In March, everyone was captivated by The Bachelor's, Colton Underwood's, gripping fence jump after Cassie broke up with him—including This American Life producer, Emanuele Berry.

On This American Life's three-part episode, "Escape from The Lab," Underwood recently spoke to Berry about his experience on the reality TV program— how he lied to producers, failed to protect the woman he loved, and tried to flee the production and Portugal altogether. On a show that's usually overproduced, Colton's season of The Bachelor became very real, very quickly. When the show attempted to ruin his chances with Cassie, he decided that was the final straw. He was done.

The Fence Jump

After Cassie broke up with him, Colton grabbed his wallet and took off his mic with the intent to run away. He planned to get a new passport and leave the country. Then, to escape, he jumped the fence. To his surprise, no one was there. No producers, no crew, no food tents, nothing. He was alone for two hours. When Colton realized he had nowhere to go, he "turned himself in" to producers. Yes, that is the wording Colton used when describing the event to Berry. Those fifteen minutes of television revealed a glitch in their carefully crafted system. The star stopped performing under their guise of a handsome, bland man the show could project whatever story they wanted onto.

Colton Jumps The Fence After Cassie Breakup 💔| The Bachelor US www.youtube.com

Berry details exactly what happened after Colton he "turned himself in," explaining how he was able to avoid the producers longer than expected: "... He's still upset, and overwhelmed, and not ready to talk. So he plays the system. He says there's a rule that you cannot be filmed or recorded while talking to the show's therapist. So he asked for that."

The event proved how sick of a bubble the Bachelor franchise is and how it functions. When a show's lead only has one way to attain the space and time he deserves away from his calculating, hurtful producers, it's telling of a larger problem. But this isn't news: The show doesn't care about its leads or its contestants.

Conning the Con

However, this wasn't the first time Colton acted on his genuine frustration and distrust of producers. Colton disclosed that at the beginning of his season he was asked to rank the female contestants. When the producers didn't give him a date with his number one pick, Hannah Goodwin, he knew he had to find a way to have some sort of control. From there, he planned to throw producers off track, keeping Hannah G. at the top of his list while, in his heart, he was really falling for Cassie. He explained:

"I sort of recall remember feeling a little burnt when they did that. I was like, so let me get this straight. Hannah's number one on my list right now, and she's not getting a date this week. So from there on out, I was like, all right, if you're going to do that to my top girls, I'm not really going to tell you who my top girls are. Because I don't want you messing with them. So in a weird way, I tried to defend myself and defend the girls by not being truthful to them who my top was."

The calculated move would backfire once the production tried to ruin any chance he had with Cassie. The show went as far as to fly her father to Portugal to talk her daughter out of pursuing their relationship. When Colton found out, all the producers fled the set, knowing how blindsided and betrayed he would feel in that moment.

Colton described their deception to Barry, "Oh, I was thinking I just got screwed. I was thinking that that wasn't her doing. I know what the format of the show is. And for me hearing, 'Hey, by the way, my dad came back,' really sparked something in me. I was like, OK. So I don't have the control I thought I had."

Choosing the Slow Burn over the Hot Flame

Throughout Colton's season, he was the butt of the joke. His virginity was publicized as the focal point of his season. Furthermore, his relationships with the contestants were always influenced by the producers' involvement. For example, the show pointedly did not give Colton a date with Hannah G., but one with Hannah B. instead. The Bachelor production always tries to push a story about hard and fast love, a fairytale kind of love-at-first-sight. But as Colton tells Berry, he resisted that narrative from the start, even more so as he fell in love with Cassie:

"I think with Cass, the best way to describe our relationship is it was such a slow burn. And it was, in a weird way, in the dynamic of The Bachelor franchise, where it's supposed to be quick, and fast, and intense. It was sort of a relief to find a normal relationship in which it was a slower burn, and I wish it was a more realistic approach to a relationship. When I was with Cass, it was like a breath of fresh air."

No Means No, Even After the Show

Colton's transparency and almost incessant dedication to pursue Cassie changed the long-running franchise forever. Instead of perpetuating the unhealthy and unrealistic notion that two months on a dating show could lead to marriage, Colton demonstrated the benefits of compromise and getting to know one another in a healthy way to incorporate both partners' needs. He undermined The Bachelor's antagonism between "the lead" and "the winner."

While Colton wanted to get engaged, he prioritized his relationship with Cassie over the show's push for high ratings. Today, they're taking things one step at a time. It's a bold move for Colton to openly discuss why he wanted to throw off producers and exactly what occurred during the aftermath of his escape. His interview blatantly undermines viewers' trust in the franchise, especially its producers. By speaking out, he's showcasing how the system is broken, for both contestants and the leads. Like most of the Bachelor Nation, I didn't initially care for Underwood. But now his honesty and vulnerability may be shining through, shedding light on why now more than ever the show isn't deserving of good people.

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