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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The theological brilliance of Blade Runner 2049

Posted By on 11.08.17 at 09:00 AM

Blade Runner 2049
  • Blade Runner 2049

Before Denis Villeneuve's Blade Runner 2049 was released in theaters a little more than a month ago, Hollywood insiders speculated that the movie could be a rarity: an intellectually rigorous blockbuster that could connect with mainstream audiences and Academy voters. Once 2049 underperformed at the box office it was treated as a misfire, proof that audiences don't like to be challenged, or that the marketing campaign didn't try hard enough to appeal to millennials or women, or that the distributor's overzealous attempt to police spoilers wound up constricting the conversation around the film.

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Thursday, November 2, 2017

Joe Ricketts penned a love letter to Trump while shutting down DNAinfo and Chicagoist

Posted By on 11.02.17 at 07:18 PM


On Thursday afternoon, all the content vanished from the DNAinfo and Gothamist network of websites, replaced by a letter from owner and CEO Joe Ricketts announcing that he'd "made the difficult decision to discontinue publishing." Some 115 employees have been laid off, the New York Times reported, including those working at DNAinfo Chicago, which Ricketts launched in 2012, and Chicagoist, the 13-year-old blog he acquired in March. Staffers will be placed on paid administrative leave through February 2, according to CNN.

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Tuesday, July 11, 2017

It’s World Population Day, so grab some condoms

Posted By on 07.11.17 at 12:30 PM

Center for Biological Diversity's Endangered Species condoms - DEANNA ISAACS
  • Deanna Isaacs
  • Center for Biological Diversity's Endangered Species condoms

Today, July 11, is World Population Day—an opportune time to guess how many human beings are currently puttering around planet earth.

If 7.5 billion is the number that comes to mind, well, bingo.

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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Riot Fest pulls off another coup: Jawbreaker’s first public performance since 1996

Posted By on 04.19.17 at 09:00 AM

  • Courtesy of Riot Fest
  • Jawbreaker

Hell must have frozen over last year, because Riot Fest managed to convince Glenn Danzig and Jerry Only to tolerate each other long enough for a partial reunion of the original Misfits. This morning the festival made its first lineup announcement for 2017, and it's pulled off another triumph in the improbable-reunion category: Jawbreaker, who broke up in 1996 after guitarist-vocalist Blake Schwarzenbach and bassist Chris Bauermeister got into a fistfight. This legendary pop-punk trio (with drummer Adam Pfahler) helped build the Bay Area’s unparalleled early-90s underground scene, drawing a fiercely dedicated fan base—an outspoken faction of which derided the band for signing to DGC (which released Dear You in 1995).

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Thursday, November 10, 2016

Signs of the time: Chicago protests president-elect Trump

Posted By on 11.10.16 at 01:07 PM

Nearly 2,000 demonstrators gathered in front of Trump Tower Wednesday night to protest president-elect Donald Trump. The protest lasted nearly nine hours, ending around 1:30 AM Thursday morning.

Reader freelance photographer Carly Ries was on hand, and she captured the best handmade signs expressing the protesters' dissatisfaction.


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Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Two paws up for the Dog Film Festival

Posted By on 09.07.16 at 12:30 PM

A scene from William Wegman's all-Weimaraner The Hardly Boys in Hardly Gold - COURTESY DOG FILM FESTIVAL
  • courtesy Dog Film Festival
  • A scene from William Wegman's all-Weimaraner The Hardly Boys in Hardly Gold

Let's get the bad news out of the way first: Dogs are not welcome at the Chicago stop of the nationally touring Dog Film Festival.

"Dogs get busy and talk back to the screen," explains Tracie Hotchner, host of NPR's Dog Chat, author of The Dog Bible, and the festival's organizer. "They're not respectful." Also, the Music Box Theatre, which is showing the films, does not allow them.

Hotchner did ask her two Weimaraners, Maisie and Wanda, to help her choose films for the festival, but they weren't interested. "They thought it was boring," Hotchner says. "They're outdoor girls. They're too busy to enjoy movies. So what do you do? You go it alone and go with your gut."

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Monday, July 11, 2016

Exxxotica Chicago, the ‘comic con of porn,’ is secretly more conservative than a Trump rally

Posted By on 07.11.16 at 06:48 PM

Many of the dancers at Exxxotica were dressed up as comic-book or anime characters. - SUNSHINE TUCKER
  • Sunshine Tucker
  • Many of the dancers at Exxxotica were dressed up as comic-book or anime characters.

A slender woman in a leather catsuit posed gracefully on a crowded convention show floor—her whip gripped in an outstretched hand as if ready to strike. She smirked as a trio of men holding smartphones snapped a quick photo of her.

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A photo tour of the Numero Group's new brick-and-mortar shop

Posted By on 07.11.16 at 12:00 PM

Look at all these dang records! - SUNSHINE TUCKER
  • Sunshine Tucker
  • Look at all these dang records!

Chicago archival label the Numero Group opened its Little Village brick-and-mortar store, the Numero Factory Outlet, on Friday, July 8. As label cofounder Rob Sevier told Gossip Wolf last week, the store is open only on Fridays, and it carries only Numero releases. As longtime Numero admirers know, its catalog is large enough to make for a healthy inventory—the shop's rows of LPs, seven-inches, and CDs fill out its angled pathways nicely. The store sits right next to the label's cavernous warehouse space—copies of the same records on display in the shop are stored in boxes within view.

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Thursday, May 26, 2016

The octopus and fish go down fighting at Shiroi Sushi

Posted By on 05.26.16 at 04:57 PM

Whole fish at Shiroi Sushi in Glenview - KRISTINA MEYER
  • Kristina Meyer
  • Whole fish at Shiroi Sushi in Glenview

Five years ago when I wrote about the supposed embiggening powers of sannakji (aka "Korean Viagra," aka recently dispatched and dismembered octopus still wriggling and suckering with residual nerve activity), I was mildly disappointed that the pair I purchased at HMart didn't have the same vitality as the ones I'd been served in South Korea. Nothing's ever as good as it is at its source, right? 

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

A Chicago couple sexes up card games with Weapons of Mass Seduction

Posted By on 05.25.16 at 09:00 AM

Kaitlin Johnson and Daniel Dranove, creators of Weapons of Mass Seduction
  • Kaitlin Johnson and Daniel Dranove, creators of Weapons of Mass Seduction

Pegged as the adult card game in which people play a sex-themed variation of "Would you rather?", Weapons of Mass Seduction picks up where most couples' games leave off: riding crops, Trader Joe's, and Orthodox Judaism. Players win points by guessing which sexual act their opponent prefers—ranging from raunchy to ridiculous—with cards like: "Whip opponent with riding crop," "Apply Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter to your body for opponent to lick off," or "Opponent does taxes, budgeting, or fiscal forecasting while topless with a little calculator and glasses." 

Weapons of Mass Seduction comes from the dirty minds of Cards Against Humanity cocreator Daniel Dranove and his longtime girlfriend, Kaitlin Johnson. Dranove and Johnson initially created WMS in 2013 as a private Valentine's Day gift for each other. "We put together WMS after looking at other sex games," Dranove says. "Nothing appealed, and we felt this stigma—either we felt uncomfortable with the language, or they read like romance novels."

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