Last updateWed, 24 Feb 2021 1pm


Volume 86 (Fall 2014 - Spring 2015)

"Teen Wolf" Finale is All Bark, No Bite

teen-wolf-season-4When MTV's Teen Wolf first premiered in June of 2011, its first season was surprisingly successful, despite low expectations based on the mere fact that it was a show called "Teen Wolf" on a network that does not exactly carry the best reputation when it comes to producing high-quality television.

If one were to survey fans of the show (which includes myself), they would most likely say that the success of the first season was mainly due to the fact that it focused heavily on its charming characters, such as the incredibly selfless Scott McCall (Tyler Posey) and his rather sarcastic best friend, Stiles Stilinski (Dylan O'Brien), and the relationships that they held. Although the first season had its share of intriguing plotlines and conflicts, the show never seemed to stray from what was making it a hit—the teens themselves.

Now, three years later (as I sit here and contemplate just how long I have dedicated my time to this show), Teen Wolf finishes up its fourth season. Unfortunately, this particular finale was just another underwhelming addition to an overall disappointing season.

This season, fans followed their protagonist Scott as he came to terms with the fact that he is now the Alpha (or "leader") of his own wolf pack, which now includes a very young (and very moody) freshman boy named Liam that Scott bit himself.

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“Déjà Vu” for Classic Rock Fans at the MAC

csnappWhile the people of Monmouth County were wrapping up their Fourth of July weekend this past summer, Monmouth University sparked some fireworks of their own by hosting Crosby, Stills & Nash in concert on July 6.

The auditorium was vast and almost silent as I climbed the upper-tier section of the MAC for an opening act-less 7:30 show time. The lights were dimmed as I found my seat, the only noise coming from the anxious grumblings of anticipation from a restless crowd surrounding me.

Suddenly, a flash of light illuminated the faces in the arena. The band, playing atop their infamous Persian rug flooring, filled every crack and crevice of the building with one of their most famous songs, "Carry On/Questions." I was shocked as people of all ages stood up and swallowed me whole in my seat, dancing and swaying to a record released over 40 years prior. Who says rock is dead?

"Yes they may be older guys, but they are in the Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame," Vice President of Student Services Mary Anne Nagy, said. "We thought it was going to be a good show from the beginning, and we were very pleased with the ticket sales." Nagy led the forefront of workers who helped book and set up the show, and made sure it ran as efficiently and safely as possible.

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5 Seconds of Summer

Australian band makes pop-punk mainstream

5sos_buzznetThis summer was filled with many new obsessions, like dumping ice on your head and buying more clothes that are originally from the 80s; however, the music scene had a different type of breakout star. Four boys from Sydney, Australia have made their way into the eyes of the public with their self-titled debut album, "5 Seconds of Summer." More importantly, these boys have brought pop-punk music back onto mainstream radio stations, and even back onto award shows. The band consists of Luke Hemmings (lead vocals/guitar), Michael "Mikey" Clifford (guitar), Calum Hood (bass/vocals), and Ashton Irwin (drums). These 18 and 20-year-old guys have been making their mark on the billboard charts and radio stations around the world.

The album was released in America on July 22, and debuted number one on the Billboard 200 charts. The album opens strong with their incredibly catchy first single, "She Looks So Perfect." The song is fun to sing along to, beginning with a string of "hey's" before moving into your typical pop-punk sound. The next song on the album, "Don't Stop," is another single released by the band, and it's just as catchy as the first. At this point, the listener probably realizes that this album is going to be four teenage boys singing about pretty girls in a catchy, but not necessarily lyrically complex, way. This listener's theory is confirmed when the next songs that follow are called "Good Girls" and "Kiss Me Kiss Me."

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...and the summer box office

GuardiansThe heroes currently guarding our galaxy aren't exactly heroic: the dysfunctional team introduced to us in Marvel's newest blockbuster is made up of outlaws, thieves, traitors, and (in some cases) genetically-modified creatures. They come together for a selfish purpose, but a quest to cash in on a mysterious orb ultimately unlocks a sinister plot to destroy the realms. In forcing its characters to discover their own virtues and establish a new definition for the term 'hero,' "Guardians of the Galaxy" became the fresh, funny, and unexpected hit of the summer.

Like most Marvel movies, "Guardians" requires a healthy dose of mythology before it can kick off the story. We begin our journey on Earth, where a young Peter Quill watches his mother die before being swiftly sucked up into the night sky in 1988. We reunite with Peter two decades later, where he has adopted a new name (Star-Lord), and is more-or-less partaking in a terrestrial treasure hunt. The self-proclaimed "legendary outlaw" is brought to life by Chris Pratt, who (despite starring in his first leading role) has a commanding screen presence.

In a complicated turn of events, Quill finds himself with a bounty on his head, and being hunted down by the odd group of hopeful reward-collectors that will become the Guardians: Zemora (Zoe Saldana), the green-skinned, surprisingly moral assassin; Rocket (voiced by Bradley Cooper), a trigger-happy raccoon with a knack for machinery; and Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel), a benign talking tree that has only mastered three words of the English language ('I,' 'am,' and 'Groot,' exclusively in that order.). Along the way they meet Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), a no-nonsense brute on a quest for revenge.

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orange-is-the-new-black-posterSeason One of "Orange is the New Black," Netflix's breakout dramedy about a women's correctional facility, was raw, hilarious, and fearless - and it was just the beginning. The show's second installment, available online as of June 6th, goes deeper into the lives of everyone's favorite convicts as racial lines are drawn in the sand of Litchfield Penitentiary. The arrival of new inmates shakes up alliances, and it's every woman for herself in the show's highly-anticipated second season.

Originally based on the memoir of the same name written by Piper Kerman, "Orange" follows a fictional Piper Chapman (Taylor Schilling), and her transition from yuppie Smith graduate to fish-out-of-water in a woman's prison. After carrying a suitcase of money across international borders for her drug smuggling then-girlfriend Alex Vause (Laura Prepon), Piper drastically changes course and spends the next decade building a picture-perfect life with dorky fiance Larry Bloom (Jason Biggs). When she is ultimately indicted for her criminal involvement in a drug ring, Piper is sentenced to fifteen months at a minimum security prison, where she confronts painful truths about herself and her relationships.

The series has received a lot of hype since its debut last year, and for good reason: Jenji Kohan and her writers took an unproven streaming service and delivered a powerhouse story that not only criticizes an archaic prison system, but digs deep to prove that we are all more than the bad decisions we make. "Orange" is unprecedented in its vast and diverse female ensemble, all of whom have backgrounds and storylines of their own. Its writing is sharp and funny in a completely unconventional way, and as recognized by the Academy with four Emmy nominations this past summer, it features some winning acting performances.

Last season left us with an agonizing cliffhanger, and a reminder that in prison, the stakes are always high. Piper's character arc throughout "Orange's" first chapter was a brilliant descent into the life of the rare female antihero, one who (despite her education, entitlement, and wealthy background) ends up in a bloody brawl outside in the snow during the prison's Christmas pageant. After a year of torturous speculation (Did Piper kill Pennsatucky (Taryn Manning)? Will her sentence be extended?), Season Two mercifully provides some answers.

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Contact Information

The Outlook
Jules L. Plangere Jr. Center for Communication
and Instructional Technology (CCIT)
Room 260, 2nd floor

The Outlook
Monmouth University
400 Cedar Ave, West Long Branch, New Jersey

Phone: (732) 571-3481 | Fax: (732) 263-5151