As a gender non-binary musician, I have to say I have never met a man in a band who didn’t think they were better at music than me. So this week I was more shocked by having elbows than I was by a rock music venue in Middlesbrough forbidding female-fronted bands from performing there. According to regulars of Doctor Browns, women just can’t sing/play rock like men. And you know what gals, they’re right… because women are doubtlessly better musicians than men. How many gigs fronted by old white dudes have you had to sit through? Add in a spoonful of ego and you’ve got a pudding full of proof which tastes like sweet sweet mediocrity, topped with a coulis of condescension.
Let's take Josh Homme — frontman of Queens of the Stone Age, and occasional homophobe — kicking a female photographer square in the head at a gig in LA earlier this week. Homme responded by saying he was so into it that he didn’t notice her standing literally there. He did eventually apologise to Lauren, which is at least a step up from his outrageous response to being called homophobic after he screamed “faggot” at someone at Norwegian Wood Festival back in 2008.
And speaking of the utterly irrelevant, Morrissey continues to hammer the nails into his reputation’s coffin, this week calling out German newspaper Der Spiegel for apparently manipulating an interview. Instead of backing down, the German publication brought the receipts and published the entire audio recording of Morrissey’s interview. Already in hot water after he went on record defending Kevin Spacey and Harvey Weinstein, it seems as though the world might finally be over its Morrissey phase. Phew.
Anyway, enough about them; let’s talk about some real rockstars. This week, Meryl Streep announced plans to make more demands of Hollywood in terms of representation of women. “We’re after 50/50 by 2020,” she said onstage at the Massachusetts Conference for Women, adding that she’s banding together with a bunch of other brilliant female actors to put together a set of non-negotiable demands. While the Golden Globe nominations failed to recognise a single woman in the category of Best Director, and snubbed huge actors and movies — like Tiffany Haddish in the smash Girls Trip, or naming Get Out as a comedy (unbelievable) — which Jada Pinkett Smith rightly called out as an antiquated view of race and gender in the film industry, perhaps, if Meryl’s new posse has anything to do with it, this is the final year we’ll all have to sit through this awards garbage knowing that someone more deserving should be clutching the trophy.
In another rockstar move, Bella Hadid jacked a Tag Heuer opening in London, wearing a full-on gown, to protest Trump’s abominable decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Hadid’s father and much of her family are Palestinian, and in an important and moving Instagram post the supermodel opened up about the feelings of sadness such a senseless decision brought upon her, her family and many other Palestinians the world over. Oftentimes the Israel-Palestine conflict can be an abstract, dehumanised intellectual battle, so while some may criticise Instagram activism, Hadid’s humanisation of Trump’s decision narrated a rare emotional insight onto millions of people’s feeds.
In another emotional moment this week, that Keaton Jones viral bullying video had people across the net in tears. Tip: Do not watch the clip hungover/hungry/tired/in public/wearing mascara. The video, taken by Jones’s mum, which addresses his bullies directly, struck a chord in Hollywood’s heart. From Cardi B to Demi Lovato to Millie Bobby Brown; from Mark Ruffalo to Chris Evans, messages of support and propositions of friendship poured out from across the internet to this little kid who’s had enough of being bullied. As someone who’s been bullied too, I wish I’d been cool enough to make a viral vid and become an internet sensation, but props to Keaton, whose story will hopefully shut down insecure people masquerading as big strong bullies everywhere. Stop it now. Nobody thinks it’s cool.
Continuing this emotional rollercoaster that we term existence, this week it was confirmed that 2018 will simply be a waste year of waiting for 2019 to roll around, after it was guttingly confirmed that both Stranger Things 3 and the final season of Game of Thrones won’t be ready until the year after next. I mean, what’s the point then? What am I gonna do with all my Stranger Things merch (lol I’m kidding)?? How many times can I watch snippets of Cersei savaging everyone and everything ever before I drown in my meaninglessness? Perhaps it’s time to watch something else or, like, go outside. We’ll see. *Opens Netflix, rewatches season 1 Jessica Jones*