Megan’s Pop Culture Watch: October 2021

Media is messy. With countless social platforms and ever-changing trending pages, it’s easy to miss the biggest headlines. Here’s what you may have missed from the pop culture world this month.

1) The Most Dangerous Game

When it arrived on Netflix in mid-September, “Squid Game” quickly rose to being the platform’s highest-viewed show in history. The Korean drama highlights the intense socioeconomic disparity between classes through childrens’ games and murder. Yeah, you read that right. 

In the show, contestants play well-known playground games, such as Red Light, Green Light, to win enormous prize money. Seems easy enough, right? The catch is that any mistakes or rule-breaking leads to violent killings and as more people die, the prize money accumulates. This main storyline is augmented by various subplots, which are equally captivating as well as a nice break from the gore. 

Screencaps and music from “Squid Game” have quickly been made into memes by GenZ fans, especially on TikTok and Twitter. You’ve probably stumbled upon videos of people poking shapes out of candy circles and videos where the music from the Red Light, Green Light game plays incessantly in the background. Check out “Squid Game” on Netflix to see what everyone’s talking about.

2) Hello From the Other Side

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Adele is back and happier than ever. Newly divorced, the singer announced her new era of “30” by going big. The number “30,” in Adele’s signature font, was spotted being projected onto famous monuments all around the globe, from the Colosseum to our very own Empire State Building. This stunt was followed with an announcement that a single from the album, entitled “Easy on Me,” would be released prior to the entire album on Oct. 15th. 

In traditional Adele fashion, “30” is expected to be a cautionary tale of love and loss, as well as a journey through the healing process after a breakup. When asked about the inspiration for the album on an Instagram live, the British singer shortly replied, “Divorce, babes, divorce,” to which the chat absolutely exploded. The full album is set for release on Nov. 19th, and fans cannot wait for the heartbreaking breakup bops that are bound to be on it. Be sure to stay on the lookout for “30” in the upcoming weeks.

3) Sign of the Styles

Photo Courtesy of: Melanie Tomo

Spotted: Harry Styles in the Flatiron District for the first NYC stop on Love on Tour, donning a signature black suit and looks that can kill. Madison Square Garden saw Styles for the first time since 2018 on Oct. 3rd, and it was a more than gracious return as over 18,000 fans filled the seats of the stadium. 

The One Direction star spent the night performing songs from his album “Fine Line” for the first time in the city since its release over two years ago, as well as music from his debut album and the breakout One Direction single “What Makes You Beautiful.” Fans were especially enthralled when Styles unexpectedly sang “To Be So Lonely,” from the “Fine Line” album, as he had not played the song at most of his prior shows. Styles performed at the same venue the following night, receiving an equal amount of love from the Harries.

Styles is set to return to the sold-out Garden three more times: Oct. 16, 30 and 31, with the latter two being a two-day fancy dress stint dubbed “Harryween”. Be warned that on these nights, the Bronx-bound No. 1 train will more than likely be packed with women wearing vintage two-piece suits and fruit costumes.

4) Timmy Tim and the Chocolate Factory

New York native Timothée Chalamet gave fans a sneak peek at his role of the young Willy Wonka on Oct. 10th in a
tweet captioned “WONKA ✨✨🍫.”  “Wonka” is labeled as a prequel to both versions of the Chocolate Factory movie, in which Chalamet will play a younger version of the titular candymaker, telling his story prior to his success in the candy world. The “Little Women” actor is rumored to have numerous singing and dancing numbers in the production, which should be an easy feat for the LaGuardia graduate.

Fans of both Wonka movies as well as fans of the young actor took to Twitter to post their initial reactions and thoughts on the casting choice. Many are hopeful that Chalamet will live up to the unforgettable performances of the role’s predecessors, Gene Wilder and Johnny Depp, and complete the iconic hat trick of astounding Wonka portrayals. 

The prequel is still a ways away from being done, with its release date being March 2023, but fans are still extremely excited to see Chalamet’s take on the infamous chocolatier.

5) Bones or No Bones?

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We’re on the topic of bones not because of Halloween but because of a sleepy pug named Noodle. If you’ve been on any social media platform in the past month, you definitely know about the dog who predicts the future of everyone’s day based on if he has “bones” that day or not.

Having “bones” refers to the fact that when owner Jonathan Graziano attempts to make Noodle stand, he stands. A “bones” day is a good omen for the day of the viewers: a sign that today’s the day to work hard, try new things and have a productive day. On the other hand, having “no bones” means that Noodle does not wish to stand and instead plops right back down on his bed. “No bones” days are usually signs that today is not the day to work insanely hard or have crazy new experiences, but to relax, make a cup of coffee and take a nap. 

Jongraz of TikTok began posting videos of his 13-year-old dog Noodle experiencing different “bones” days on Aug. 8. Since then, millions of viewers have relied on Noodle to be their guide dog in letting them know what kind of day each new morning brings. He provides inspiration and brings devastation to viewers, depending on the day of course, all while looking insanely cute and living his best life. Cheers to many more “bones” or “no bones” days!

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