Tuesday, August 9, 2011

It's been almost a year!

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Sorry for disappearing!

Things have been busy, but here's a post of animated gifs from the movie I posted about last year, Reet, Petite, and Gone!

This pair just cracked me up as I rewatched the movie over the weekend.

If you're a frequent internet commenter, you've got some awesome reaction shots below.


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Monday, September 13, 2010

Characters of Color on Mad Men

Mad Men is the best show on television, in my opinion, but because it's set in the world of Madison Avenue advertising in the mid 1960s, there's a notable dearth in diversity. When characters of color are featured in a professional setting they're usually playing the maid, a janitor, an elevator operator, a waitress, a bus boy, a Xerox installer, et al. Contrarily, e
very time a black character not featured in a domestic capacity is seen on the show, usually in an informal social situation, it's to bolster the counter culture cred of one of the main characters: Kinsey's black girlfriend, Don's hippie mistress Midge has a black friend, and now Joyce does too. It's all very purposeful.

Don visits a Japanese restaurant and is propositioned by a waitress.

In 'The Rejected' a black janitor buffs the floors of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce.

Pete Campbell accosts Hollis, the Sterling Cooper elevator operator, to discover the origins of his - and other black peoples' allegiance to Admiral televisions.

Betty visits home and cries on the shoulder of the woman who raised her, her nanny Viola.

These screencaps are from the series premiere of Mad Men. Don is at a bar/lounge and asks the black server why he's so loyal to his brand of cigarettes and if he'd ever try Lucky Strike. A superior sees this conversation and asks Don Draper if the server is bothering him because he can be a bit "chatty." Sign o' the times.

Outside of being used as devices to highlight social progressiveness and professional disparities, black celebrities, activists, and public figures have been mentioned on the show too many times for me to remember: Medgar Evers (more implied than anything), Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Nat King Cole, Muhammad Ali , and more.

Peggy meets a black nude model at a party. Love the earrings and hair.

Peggy goes to a warehouse party reminiscent of Warhol's silver factory and passes a black couple in the hall.

I've already posted about Sheila White, copywriter Paul Kinsey's one time girlfriend.

The juxtaposition of Sheila and Hollis in this scene is poignant and hilarious. Paul tries to strike up small talk with Hollis, to whom he's never spoken before and the look on Hollis' face tells us all we need to know.

In a pregnancy induced fever dream, Betty Draper imagines her late mother and father in her kitchen with Medgar Evers.

Prompted by his girlfriend, Kinsey takes a bus to the south to help with voter registration. Here, he's at the height of his well-intentioned, yet pretentious liberalism. Doing the right things for the wrong reasons.

Pete Campbell discovering Ebony magazine and black ad dollars.

One of Don Draper's early mistresses, Midge Daniels, was an illustrator and late hold-over from the Beat generation - that or an early hippie. In the scene pictured above, she, her friends, and Don Draper smoke marijuana.

I guess I'm hyper aware of the appearance of characters of color because the occurrences are so sparing, I know that they must be very deliberate.

In the most recent episode of Mad Men, 'The Summer Man', this stylish black couple is seen on the streets of Manhattan.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

More Mad Men Casting Call Favorites

Another round of favorites from the Mad Men Casting Call contest.

First up is my sister's friend from high school, Andrew Turner!

St. Benton
Seattle, Washingon
The sepia effect was a great choice. Love this shot.

S. Byron
Baltimore, MD

Houston, TX
I love this jewel toned shirt waist day dress.

K. Amber - Rockville, MD

Cathi Walker - Brooklyn, NY
Nothing's more classic than a crisp white shirt and a circle skirt!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Vintage Beyonce Part 1

Alternately titled: In which b.vikki vintage descends into Beyonce fan-zine territory.

I certainly didn't start b.vikki vintage with the intent of it becoming a Beyonce exegesis blog, but for at least 2 more posts, it will be. Her "Why Don't You Love Me?" video prompted my investigation into her vintage looks throughout the years ... and surprisingly, she's had a plethora. In this series, I'll be posting and dissecting Beyonce's forays into vintage fashion.

These occurrence are infrequent enough for me to be hesitant in declaring Beyonce a conscious fan of mid century clothing, but prevalent enough for me to have noticed what may be a latent tendency toward vintage influences. I'm probably fishing in a lot of cases, counting a hairstyle or hat as proof of Bey's vintage leanings, but I'll take what I can get.

Let's start at the very beginning... a very good place to start.

Above is a screencap from No, No, No Part 1, Destiny's Child's first music video. I spy loosely marcelled hair.

In Lose My Breath, Beyonce's alter ego sports a modernized victory roll.

Beyonce never did the 70s better than when she channeled Farrah Fawcett in Destiny's Child's video for Independent Women. The geometric, graphic print tops, wide legged pants, and arm cuff are spot on.

Can't pin down an exact era here, but the film noir menswear inspiration is evident.

Foxy Cleopatra, whether homage or parody, is unmistakably a nod to characters in 1970s exploitation films. And that curly 'fro is perfection.

I'm not the biggest fan of 1970s fashion trends, but never have a compact and afro pick looked so menacing. What I do love about Beyonce's look here is all of the gold - the lip, the eye shadow, what I imagine to be dangerous amounts of bronzer, the earrings, the chunky ring. It just works.

The soundtrack to Austin Powers in Goldmember provided Beyonce's first taste of a solo career and chance to fully embrace a style sovereign of Destiny's Child. Here, she modernizes her character Foxy Cleopatra's look.

The headband, the big hair, the sweater. Beyonce is 100% pin up girl in Check On It.

'03 Bonnie and Clyde, featuring Jay-Z, was directly influenced and inspired by Faye Dunaways 1967 film of the same name.

There are two more parts to this most likely ill-advised Beyonce series. I'll be posting them over the next week.

Thanks for reading!