Why You Should All Be Watching "Terrace House"
Entertainment |  Source: L. Smith, Polygon

Why You Should All Be Watching "Terrace House"

Now THIS is reality TV.

While other people may enjoy watching The Bachelor or Keeping Up With The Kardashians, I much prefer shows where I actually like the people I'm watching. Sounds bizarre?

Well, it is - at least in the American reality TV world.

The Japanese reality show, Terrace House, first aired in 2012 and has now become a popular franchise that's spawned two spin-offs and a movie. The show's premise is simple: six strangers live together in a beautiful house and get to know one another.

The amount of time they spend in the house is completely dependent on them, so they can leave whenever they want. Some cast members don't even stay for the whole season.

The show's "no script" concept makes it more realistic, and honestly, even a bit boring at times but that's the entire appeal of Terrace House.

These people don't go out clubbing every night or spend hundreds of dollars on bottle service, they don't ride around in limos or Lamborghinis and they don't have sex at all hours of the day.

The ages of the cast members range from 18 to early 30s, but one thing is kept constant: there are always three girls and three guys. This isn't necessarily to make relationships happen, although it can, it simply makes for interesting interactions among the entire cast.

While the show is being filmed, the cast lead their lives as usual, going to school, work or taking naps. The only difference from their daily routine is that they're being recorded.

This results in a lot of scenes eating dinner together, lounging in the living room or laying in bed.

The best part of the show is how well everyone handles conflict. Honestly, Americans could learn a thing or two from them. When there's a problem, everyone sits down and talks about it - either as a group or one on one.

And, from the way they speak, it's clear that the issues they bring forward have been discussed off-camera as well, showing these people actually do talk to one another. Things can get heated on occasion, but there are never physical altercations.

Sounds crazy, doesn't it? No cat fights or drunken brawls.

One of the best parts of the show may in fact be the commentators. Instead of using the standard reality TV "confessional" - that thing where someone talks directly to the camera to explain what they're thinking - the show has a collection of comedians who summarize and discuss the events of the episode.

This doesn't happen often, usually only at the beginning and the middle of the episode, but it provides a lot of humor. They've been working together for years, so they have a friendly rapport with one another, resulting in a lot of comedy.

Sure, the show is in Japanese and you'll have to read subtitles most of the time, but plenty of other reality TV shows have been popular with language barriers - remember the Jersey Shore? They barely spoke English.

All I can say is that you should give Terrace House a shot and watch an episode or two. You might not be able to watch other reality shows again.

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Entertainment |  Source: N. Leeper, Twitter.com

9 Asian Men You Should Be Obsessing Over

White guys aren't the only "sexy" ones.

As an Asian-American I'm offended by the stereotype that Asian men aren't attractive. I think men of any ethnicity are totally capable of being sexy, it's just that the Western media chooses to focus on European features as the attractive ones. A narrative that harms all people of color, not just Asians.

I went to Vancouver once -- the city outside of Asia with the most Asians -- and was totally blown away with the amount of Asian representation they had on their billboards and in their ads. It was unbelievably refreshing to see Asian men portrayed as "sexy" and honestly, it was kind of a relief to not see blonde, blue eyed "hunks" everywhere.

In an attempt to increase awareness of Asian mens sex appeal, here are a few Asian men that I personally find attractive.

Kim Jong-in
Going by the stage name Kai, this 23-year-old has gained notoriety for his dancing skills and the heart-stopping ability to be simultaneously cute and sexy. A member of the popular K-pop group Exo, this guy is constantly striving to improve.


Gong Yoo
After a series of stints in South Korean dramas, the 38-year-old proved he could lead a film with his starring role in the zombie flick Train to Busan (one of my favorite zombie movies to-date). Besides being utterly adorable he's also an amazing actor.


Park Chanyeol
This talented powerhouse is another member of K-pop group Exo. Don't let his babyface fool you, Chanyeol is 24, and an amazing rapper, drummer, guitarist and painter. Are you impressed yet?


Christian Yu
This former musican founded Dream Perfect Regime (DPR), a Korean indie group, and is now their visual director. Since he now works behind the scenes it's harder to find him, but he's super active on Instagram -- either posting unbelievably sexy selfies or his hardcore workout routine.


Ross Butler
Ross Butler's casting in 13 Reasons Why was an incredible achievement for the Asian-American community. While the character he plays is a huge douche (a refreshing casting choice for an Asian actor) Ross is far from it. He's a total dork, which makes him all the more charming.


Yuya Shibusawa
The least famous person on this list, Yuya is my Asian crush. The 19-year-old is half Japanese and half American, but has spent most of his life as an aspiring actor, he most recently starred in the reality TV show, Terrace House, where I couldn't help but root for his current relationship while I stared at his face.


Manish Dayal
This charming gentleman has been in quite a few TV shows over the years, but his most recent gig is the one I'm most excited for. He'll be starring in The Resident, a new medical drama that's sure to impress. He doesn't play the typical accented Indian character, instead he's a nervous intern with an Ivy League diploma. Another win for diversity here!


Sota Fukushi
This Japanese actor has been featured in a variety of TV shows and movies in his home country, but he's still relatively unknown. For now at least. With a live action film based on the manga series Bleach in the works, with Sota in the starring roll, he's sure to become a huge star.


Booboo Stewart
Booboo being onscreen isn't only important for Asian men, but also Native American men. He has Japanese, Chinese and Korean ancestry on his mother's side and Blackfoot ancestry on his father's. What a mix. You may recognize him from the Twilight films, but he more recently starred in Disney's Descendants series.


How do you feel about Asian men now?

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Entertainment |  Source: L. Smith, BET

9 TV Shows From Your Childhood You Should Totally Rewatch

Get ready for some nostalgia.

It's been an interesting experience to grow up watching great television because it's given me the opportunity to judge the hell out of today's TV shows. They're overtly scripted, painfully awkward and unbelievably unfunny. What happened to good TV?

With the invention of streaming and downloading, we're able to easily watch our favorite shows from the past - thank god - which means there's no excuse to not re-watch them. So do it!

All That
This show was basically Saturday Night Live for preteens (ironically, one of All That's stars, Kenan Thompson, went on to be a cast member at SNL). The long-running show was popular not only because it was entertaining, but because it showed diversity.

The show was a great place for young comedians and actors to begin their careers. The series gave Gabriel Iglesias (AKA Fluffy) his start and also introduced the world to Jamie Lynn Spears, Amanda Bynes and Nick Cannon.

source: consequenceofsound.net

The Amanda Show
After Amanda Bynes showed off her comedy skills on All That, Nickelodeon decided to give her her own show. A great decision, as The Amanda Show eventually led to cast members Drake Bell and Josh Peck getting their own Nickelodeon series, Drake & Josh. Totally Kyle, one of The Amanda Show's recurring sketches, is still hilarious to watch today.

source: refinery29.com

The Powerpuff Girls
I'm talking about the original TV show, not that horrible reboot that came out in 2016. These three girls showed that you didn't have to be big or a guy to totally kick ass. The show is fun and unabashedly feminine, which makes the entire premise of The Powerpuff Girls all the more awesome.

source: powerpuffgirls.wikia.com

Lizzie McGuire
Lizzie McGuire was awesome because the character was so normal. She wasn't a secret celebrity, she wasn't a wizard and she wasn't a famous Youtuber. She was just an ordinary girl trying to get through junior high in one piece. While the characters are young and their problems a tad juvenile, we can still identify with Lizzie, no matter how old we get.

source: playbuzz.com

Hey Arnold!
With a new Hey Arnold! movie in the works, I think it's time everyone re-watched one of the best childhood cartoons. The plotlines are funny and the main character is a genuinely good guy. And who could ever forget Helga? That girl took stalking your crush to a whole new level.

source: hhsclarionnews.com

Teen Titans
This show was another victim of a horrible spinoff. I shudder when I think about the fact that children of today can only watch high-pitched, chibi versions of these badass heroes. The Teen Titans team had awesome powers and equally awesome villains to fight against. They just don't make superheroes like this anymore.

source: wikipedia.org

Kim Possible
This show not only had a strong female hero, it also had a strong female villain. Both Shego and Kim were beautiful, badass and brilliant. If only they could've been on the same team, then they really would've run the world.

source: themastermindsite.com

That's So Raven
This show wasn't only about a hilarious psychic, it was also one of the few shows on TV with an African-American family. A spinoff starring members of the original cast premieres on July 21, meaning us 90s kids will finally have a reason to turn on The Disney Channel.

And it's sure to be just as progressive as the original show, with a premise all single parents (or children of those families) will be able to identify with.

source: insidethemagic.net

Totally Spies!
This was the ultimate girl power TV show. The three leads were world renowned spies who managed to make it to school on time and have fabulous wardrobes. Could you imagine having lipstick that doubles as a laser?

source: tvtropes.org

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Entertainment |  Source: L. Smith, Shutterstock, World Vector Logo

Will Facebook Be The Next Netflix?

Let's not get ahead of ourselves here.

Facebook's reportedly in talks with Hollywood studios to produce high-quality TV, looking to launch shows by late summer. The social media site is apparently willing to budget as high as $3 million per episode (for that budget, they'd better be good). They're looking to target the age range of 13 to 34, particularly focusing on 17 to 30.

Two shows they've already lined up are Strangers, which is a relationship drama, and a game show called Last State Standing. Instead of dropping entire seasons in one go, apparently Facebook wants to release episodes one by one.

If you were excited by this news, that might have put your excitement to a screeching halt. No binge watching an entire season in one go? Waiting for new episodes of things can be hard sometimes, especially when you're used to Netflix's methods of just giving you twelve or so episodes immediately.

Granted, people do it, but many prefer a good binge watch nowadays. Getting left on a cliffhanger and having to wait a week to see the resolution sucks.

Facebook sounds kind of out of touch with their demographic here then, huh?

I personally am wondering if this whole thing is Facebook's attempt to get people using their site more again. Let's be real, many still use it, but knowing that your mom, and maybe your grandma, are floating around on there can be sooo off-putting.

I got sick of most of the things on my feed and deleted mine months ago, and I can't say I miss it. There's plenty of other social media sites that I use that keep me in touch with people, and it's pretty likely that others have been feeling the same way.

We'll have to see, though. If these shows are any good, maybe it'll be time to reactivate that account.

Just don't show me your bad political memes.

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Entertainment |  Source: L. Smith, Kontrol Magazine

Did You Watch Disney's "That's So Raven" Spin-off?

It's time for another throwback.

With so many of Disney's old shows and movies getting remade, it was only a matter of time until they made a sequel to one of their most popular shows, That's So Raven. The show followed a teenage psychic and was one of the most progressive series on the network, with a predominately African-American cast. The show was immensely popular and lasted for four seasons before receiving its first spinoff, Cory in the House, which followed Raven's brother and father in The White House.

Ten years after That's So Raven's original run, the cast is finally back, this time for Raven's Home, which once again follows the psychic plot, this time geared around both Raven and her young son. Raven-Symone and Aneliese van der Pol return as Raven and Chelsea, and both characters are as quirky, sassy and headstrong as they were in the original.

The spin-off references the old show in its theme song when Raven says, "Yup, that's us" instead of the original "Yup, that's me", and you can't help but feel a rush of nostalgia from your childhood.

The show also sets a good example for the kids watching it. Nia (Raven's daughter) tells her mother about her role models: Rosa Parks, Oprah Winfrey and Ruth Bader Gisburg, all strong women who did amazing things for their gender and even their races. While the feminist reference may go over some kid's heads, it's still nice to see a young character on TV who admires these kinds of women, as opposed to celebrities or models.

It's interesting to see a show where the parents aren't a married couple, but instead two divorced women who genuinely enjoy being around each other and their children. There's no cattiness, just support and care for one another. We grew up with Raven and Chelsea, and it's sweet to see that the two women managed to stay friends long after their high school years--even if that doesn't happen in real life.

While the acting is a touch overdone, the laughter drawn out and the child actors not as skilled as the That's So Raven cast at their age, the series is touching and a welcomed callback to the past. I just wonder how long it'll last considering Disney's last spinoff, Girl Meets World, only had three seasons before its cancellation.

Watch the first episode of Raven's Home below:

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Entertainment |  Source: ew.com

"Dear White People" Lives Up To The Hype

What you should be watching next.

On February 8 of this year, Netflix dropped a controversial date announcement for a show called Dear White People. The internet did not take it well.

People were cancelling Netflix accounts and calling for a boycott over a show that felt as if it came out of nowhere. When I first saw this date announcement, I thought nothing much about it, but many people from my hometown argued about how racist it was to have a show like this.

I wasn't familiar with the creator, Justin Simien's, work but I kept an open mind.

In attempts to forego any spoilers, I avoided the movie, trailers, and early reviews to have a fresher experience. When it finally dropped, I binge watched the first half of the show. I have to say this show is probably one of the most brilliant shows I have ever seen.

Without giving too much of the story away, this show brings up conversations about racism, homophobia in the black community, activism in college, and many other things that are now prominent in our complex lives. Each character is flawed and that's something that makes each viewpoint completely human.

The show follows the same story as the movie, but as if the movie had never existed. It is shot with the same wide and symmetrical frame that the movie is known for. The cast is full of fresh faces that make their roles completely unique to themselves.

The writing is often witty and self-aware of the flaws someone with an "outsider" perspective might find. The characters, for the most part, are dynamic characters and grow as the story progresses. The dialogue doesn't feel forced and doesn't over-complicate or simplify the mind of a modern college student.

As for negatives, the episodes occasionally felt stuffed with too much information. Maybe it's the roughly half hour long episodes, but sometimes the episodes felt like they needed more time to elaborate on issues they wanted tackle.

This makes the episodes better to watch at a slower pace instead of the binge method Netflix is known for. Although the writing is definitely smart, not every joke leaves you cackling, which is OK if you're not expecting to laugh out loud going into this. Some of the jokes in the show are more like commentary to point out society's flaws.

All together, "Dear White People" is something I would suggest to anyone, regardless of their views on the title. In fact, just so this is covered, the title is based on the radio show the protagonist hosts that is less than perfect and a large part of her character.

The show is worth checking out because it is truly satire at its finest. It gives you everything you want insight into. Much like many Netflix shows, it's a winner and worth trying the first episode.