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It’s a far cry from the aggressive guitar riffs of early Paramore, in large part because Taylor replaced Josh as Hayley’s songwriting partner, and he shares her love of new wave and R&B, which ... First of all, if you're not interested or don't agree with this content, just look away and don't be a part of it. Thanks, no hate please. I've been listening to After Laughter on loop in the last couple days and I can't help but notice the amount of songs that Hayley wrote about Chad (pool and forgiveness - maybe RCB and TMH too), she may never actually say that it's about him but, it's ... hayley holt partner josh 'I've been through a horrible experience but the thing I got out of it was the blessings,' Holt said at the start of the programme. Mark Foster and Hayley Holt - Strictly Come Dancing 2008 Round 3 - BBC One BBC. A deep-pocketed venture-capital firm run by Jared Kushner’s brother watched some of its tech startups rake in millions of dollars in federal coronavirus relief loans — despite the fact that it ... Hayley Holt is expecting her first child. '[We've] had a message from Terry saying 'Hey team, happy new year - I've just tuned in and I'm wondering if I missed a special announcement. Is Hayley ... Josh Ashworth is a fictional character from the British Channel 4 soap opera, Hollyoaks, played by Sonny Flood.He debuted on-screen during the episode airing on 3 October 2005 and left on 14 July 2010, after Josh was axed by executive producer Paul Marquess.Josh's storylines have included attempted murder, underage sex, drugs, drinking and ... Hayley Barna is a Partner based in New York. At First Round, Hayley has led investments in consumer companies including Mirror, Thirty Madison, Squad and Studs and B2B companies including Anvyl, Alma and Caper. Prior to joining First Round she co-founded Birchbox, the leading beauty and grooming retailer seed funded by First Round in 2010. When Hayley Williams started the pop-punk group Paramore at 15, all she wanted was to be in a band with her best guy friends. And for a while, that’s what she did. But as she grew into an icon ... From studio to farm: Pregnant Breakfast host Hayley Holt dials in from self-isolation ... we should've panic-bought some more lollies. We've forgotten lollies and chocolate, which kind of sucks.' ... Welcome to Hayley Johnson and Josh Cocks’s Wedding Website! View photos, directions A date here and there, a party. Josh hit the open. Josh Farro and Hayley Williams dated from to September, Josh Farro is a 32 year old American Guitarist. His zodiac sign is Libra. Hayley Williams is a 31 year old American Vocalist. Her zodiac sign is Capricorn.

A review of Paramore’s After Laughter

2020.08.25 01:09 Mrbrickjojo A review of Paramore’s After Laughter

By all logic, Paramore probably shouldn’t be around today. While the band has never lost their commercial success, they have lost several members in somewhat controversial fashion.
The first and biggest departure were founding members Josh and Zac Farrow leaving the band with a statement that accused lead singer Hayley Williams of making the band all about herself.
While the band were able to survive that and make their fantastic self-titled record, but as they were touring for that album, not only did bassist Jeremy Davis quit, he ended up suing the band for writing credits.
As if this wasn’t reason enough for fans to suspect that the band was done, the news broke that Hayley Williams was going through a divorce after her husband cheated on her, leading to Hayley temporarily leaving the band, and for a moment, Taylor York was the only member of Paramore.
Hayley went through a depression for a longtime (which she still seems to suffer from today though she appears to be in a better place), but eventually, the band got to work on their fifth album.
This album would prove to be a very interesting one. For starters, in the mother of all shockers, Zac Farrow returned to the band. Another thing is that this album is yet again, a huge shift in sound.
The first single ‘Hard Times’ was unlike anything any of us have ever from the band, I think it’s fair to say that most weren’t expecting it. The release of the song also introduced a whole new aesthetic and look for the band, with Hayley
On May 12, 2017, against all odds, Paramore released their fifth album, After Laughter.
With an odd lineup, a new change in sound, and a backstory that’s anything but heartwarming, how did After Laughter turn out?
Production: This album was co-produced by guitarist Taylor York and long time partner of the band, Justin Meldal-Johnsen.
This album sounds absolutely gorgeous. It gives the album the texture that a pop album requires, while still maintaining the fact that this is, in fact, a band.
Every instrument can be heard clearly, and it’s quite fascinating to listen to the album and try to notice all the little details that are included.
Lyrically: Given the background of this album, and what the band members went through in between album cycles, you probably assumed that this album would be depressing, and you’d be right in thinking that. This album, from a lyrical standpoint at least, is quite grim.
While the self-titled record wasn’t necessarily a ray of sunshine on the lyrical side of things, that album had an underline feeling of hope throughout the album. It was album written by people who had been through hard times (no pun intended), but they had hope that things would get better and they would end up happy.
With this album, it seems like it was written by people who have, once again, been through hell, but there’s no hope. There’s no light at the end of the tunnel and there’s no point of even trying.
Let’s just say the lyrical themes don’t match the album cover.
The first instance we see of this is the first single ‘Hard Times’. The song talks about going through struggles and being surprised that you even made it through it all. The rest of the album follows these them of hopelessness with songs like ‘Told You So’, ‘Fake Happy’, and ‘26’ sees the band as hopeless husk of themselves.
We also get to see Hayley open up about about her fail relationship on ‘Forgiveness’, ‘Tell Me How’ and ‘Pool.’ It’s absolutely heartbreaking to listen to and you really feel bad for her (dammit Chad, you made Hayley cry).
There are even some songs where Hayley just lays into herself like in ‘Idle Worship’ where she tells all her friends, especially her younger ones, that she is no role model.
It’s incredibly bizarre and disheartening to see Paramore, a band that’s normally inspiring and hopeful in the darkest of times, be so sad and unhappy, but it’s understandable given what they’ve gone through. This album isn’t whiny, and it isn’t some fake emo nonsense, it’s the thoughts of people who are in the lowest point of their lives and have come close to seeing everything they’ve worked for slip away. The writing is incredibly compelling and might be matched with the self-titled album when it comes to lyrics.
Musically: Despite the completely change in sound, this album may actually be the most technically proficient album the band have ever created. Yeah it’s not the 2112 of pop albums or anything, but no one was expecting it to be, and it doesn’t have to. There’s a huge contrast between the music and lyrics. The music is fun and encourages you to dance, while the lyrics bring out an entirely different vibe.
Let’s start with Hayley. Hayley adapts pretty effortlessly to the pop sound. It seriously sounds like she was born to sing in this style. Her voice is so incredibly good on every single song, and even you don’t relate to the things she’s saying, you’ll probably end up singing along with her because she’s absolutely infectious.
Zac Farro shows that he hasn’t lost his touch at all as he provides a great performance on the drums and percussion. He has had to adapt his style to fit in with the new sound of the band, but just like Hayley, he adapts perfectly. His beats are punchy, catchy, and easily danceable. He’s the back bone of most of the songs here.
Taylor York, who seems to be the driving force of the the band’s new sound, is great as well. All of his guitar parts are present and loud in the mix letting them leave an impact on the songs. You can really see all the bands that inspired this album in his guitar playing as he puts his own spin on things to create an original take on the band’s sound.
Co-producer Justin Meldal-Johnsen plays bass on the album, and he provides a great foundation for Zac to lay his drums on, creating a very powerful rhythm section.
The keyboards sprinkled throughout the album do a good job at keeping the album colorful, while the violins on ‘26’ are beautiful and provide one of the only hopeful moments on the record.
This album is unbelievably well constructed. You wouldn’t think the band that made albums like ‘Riot!’ and ‘Brand New Eyes’ could make a pop album, let alone one as well constructed as this one, but they proved that they can do it. This record sounds like it was the easiest thing to make in the world, even though it was surely anything but.
My thoughts on the album as a whole: When it comes to bands changing their sound to go pop, this is by far the best example of that I’ve ever seen.
Not only is the music beautiful constructed, but the lyrics are so touching, even though they are depressing as all hell.
I look at After Laughter as an album by a band that’s been through a hell of a lot, but they pulled through and created something incredible, and that’s really inspiring.
As someone who’s going through a lot of what’s talked about on this album, ironically enough, it gives me hope that I can get through.
Hell, if Paramore can survive all that’s happened to them, then I can survive anything.
————————Album Stats:
Best Song(s): Idle Worship, Pool, and Hard Times.
Worst Song(s): N/A
Best Lyric: “Hey baby I’m not, you’re super human, and if that’s what you want, I’d hate to let you down.”
Worst Lyric: N/A
Rank in Paramore’s Discography: 1st place
Album Rating: 10
What did you think of this review? I welcome all criticism.
submitted by Mrbrickjojo to Paramore [link] [comments]

2019.09.28 06:53 RWR_Wrestling RWR Wrestling SUPERNOVA Saturday, Sept. 28 7:30pm EST

Tomorrow Sept. 28, Revolution Wrestling Reborn (RWR) will be putting on it's annual version of WrestleMania called SUPERNOVA. We are part of an alliance of E-FEDS called E-FED Wrestling Alliance (EWA) which hosts about 10 separate E-FEDS. I, on part of RWR and EWA, wish to welcome any and all to come and join us for our SUPERNOVA season ending show tomorrow night @ 7:30 EST. You can join us at - which is RWR main channel. Cross-fed shows take place @ .
Here is a preview for our SUPERNOVA show for Sept. 28th..
With RWR's biggest show of the season only a week away, and the full card already out in the public, here's a rundown and history of what led up to every match on this gigantic show that will culminate from Dallas on Sept. 28.
RWR World Revolution Championship: DJ Craft (c) vs. Giul Thunderstrike
The main event of Supernova II sees the most dominant champion in RWR history take on who might be the most dominant non-champion in RWR history. This match holds a lot of history in the RWR record books as it was, after a defense in an Elimination Chamber, two straight defenses over Thunderstrike that kickstarted Craft’s historic run as RWR Intercontinental Champion.
A year and a half, and one championship cash-in later, Craft is still dominant as a champion, just with a higher level belt. Despite a roadblock in Cole Raynor at Beach Brawl, Craft immediately won the title back and has defenses against Eddie Cool and The Green Void under his belt and he looks to start another dominant run as an RWR Champion, this time atop the green brand.
Standing in his way this time is Giul Thunderstrike, the winner of Phoenix Cup 2k19, and the defending Rise From The Ashes champion, running the table in the process.
Bookended with the two major tournament wins was a rollercoaster of a year for Giul. After losing two opportunities for the RWR World Heavyweight Championship, he went on a skid, being unsuccessful in trying to dethrone Razor Sharp from atop Retaliation. After going on a streak of DQs, including a #1 contenders match, it took losing an all-time classic against Jarek Vanders to get his mind back on track, and ironically thanks to Razor shipping him off to Resurgence, it got Giul the fresh start he needed to rediscover his winning ways, which included once again upsetting Mr. Troupe just like he did at Day 1 of RFTA. Giul would ride this newfound momentum to a Phoenix Cup victory and hopes unlike in the beginning of the year, his big tournament win finally results in World Championship gold.
RWR World Heavyweight Championship: Donovan Pain (c) vs. Justin Sane
One of the most anticipated matches in wrestling history finally goes down at Supernova, and with the additional prize of the RWR World Heavyweight Championship on the line, this one will get interesting. Former stablemates, tag team champions, best friends, brothers, all thrown away earlier this season as Justin Sane, after asking and receiving for Donovan Pain to be added to his World Title rematch at Spring Classic, a match that saw Pain beat Sane for his first World Championship, attacked Pain backstage and aligned himself as the heavy of Razor Sharp’s regime on Retaliation.
Ever since then, this has been brewing between Pain and Sane and Razor until Pain beat Razor at Beach Brawl and Sane defeated Pain’s only remaining KAOS ally Jarek Vanders during the Phoenix Cup. Despite Sane falling in the Phoenix Cup final, Pain wanted to put an end to this once and for all and requested to finally square off with his former best friend on the biggest stage of them all for the biggest prize of them all. Can Pain solidify himself as one of the very best in KAOS, RWR, and in the wrestling world with a win or will Sane put Pain in his place and prove his dominance in becoming a 4-time World Champion?
For the Controlling Stake in Retaliation: Razor Sharp vs. Jarek Vanders
Speaking of differences a year makes, how about Razor Sharp. After betraying a remorseful Max Silverstein in February, Razor went from one of the most beloved wrestlers in RWR to easily the most hated in the company, and he has given everyone plenty of reason to with how he has controlled Retaliation this season, screwing over most of the roster, some successfully and some unsuccessfully, and forming his own group, only to betray people within that group too. Regardless, the past couple of months have not been kind to Razor. After falling short to Donovan Pain at Beach Brawl and not being able to force Donovan Pain to “thank him”, he personally recruited Adam Shaw to Retaliation to join his group, only for him to turn on Razor and give him a taste of his own medicine by haunting and mindfucking him to make him “pay for his sins” he has done to others. Now a vulnerable Razor has to put everything on the line against a man brave and talented enough to finally kick him off his throne in Jarek Vanders, who waited until the right moment to strike and goad Razor enough to get this match. Did Jarek find the right moment to overthrow Retaliation’s tyrant and end the reign of terror or will Razor have just enough sanity left to remain in charge.
Cole's freedom from the Court of Darkness on the line: Cole Raynor vs. Mr. Troupe
What a difference a year makes for both men. Mr Troupe entered the season as the RWR World Revolution Champion, but after a rough RFTA tournament and dropping the title at the RFTA Final to Eddie Cool, Troupe went on a hiatus. Enter Cole Raynor, always the most popular member of the Court of Darkness, Raynor, for lack of a better term, rose from the ashes and up the ranks, picking up key win after key win until he earned himself a shot at the title Mr. Troupe once held at Beach Brawl against a very familiar opponent in DJ Craft. Raynor won the title in a rematch of the 2018 Match of the Year. Meanwhile, Troupe returned and retargeted Adam Shaw, even more crazy and demented as he once was, especially in his Joker themed attire, perhaps acting as the shadow to Cole’s Batman look. Cole’s popularity and success quickly made the leader of The Court of Darkness jealous, and when Raynor dropped the title the next month to Craft, Troupe began testing his allegiance as questions about Raynor’s relationship in The Court grew and grew. After Raynor dropped the title, he and Troupe entered the Phoenix Cup tournament, but it was Troupe leaving Raynor out to dry by getting their Cup matches switched so Troupe could avoid longtime rival Max Silverstein. In return, Raynor rejected Troupe’s invitation for backup in his eventual losing effort to “Marvelous” Matt Matthews in the tournament, which enraged Troupe enough to stick Raynor in a 3 on 1 handicap match to “prove his allegiance. And prove it he did not as Raynor did not lay down, but put up one hell of an effort and fought his heart out before finally running out of energy and losing. However, Raynor finally found his calling, with some encouraging words from Max Silverstein, and wanted to finally be act like the hero he always would imitate before. However to do so, he needs to leave The Court and to do so, he needs to defeat the man in charge of him over the past few years in Mr. Troupe, who is hanging Raynor’s contract over his head. Can Raynor finally dig deep enough to be the man he once imitated or will Troupe continue to enslave the hero we all need and deserve within his ranks?
Goddess Dawn vs. Jennifer Jett vs. Kimiko Matsui
For as long as the EWA has been around, the big argument has been who the top woman is in the umbrella. While many have accolades for their stake in the claim, it has always boiled down to these three women: Goddess Dawn, Jennifer Jett and Kimiko Matsui. Dawn, while only holding one title in RWR, is widely respected by everyone, has her roots planted all over EWA with her daughter Paige and other graduates of her Sky Dojo, and is a major factor in all the other federations in the umbrella. Jett, who made her RWR debut this season in a surprise win over Kimiko for the RWR Women’s Championship, has been a major mainstay in MUW for years, winning everything under the sun multiple times and even teamed with Kimiko in NEW for their women’s tag titles. Kimiko, who won the RWR Women’s Championship in her RWR debut last season, has held that title 3 times total, including a 155 day reign at the end of Season 1, the longest reign in the title’s history, and being the final RWR Women’s Tag Team Champion, as well as making herself known all over EWA, including her own company in THW. These three women have faced off many times in the past in singles matches, including the trio finding themselves in a triangle with Dawn beating Kimiko, Kimiko beating Jett and Jett beating Dawn over the past couple of months. However, they have yet to face off in a triple threat, but that gigantic showdown will finally happen at Supernova II. On top of everything, RWR and Kimiko Matsui have had difficulties with a contract extension, so this could end up being her final match in an RWR ring for quite some time. Who is the best? We’re going to find out.
RWR Intercontinental Championship: Travis Sanders (c) vs. Cordin Ganea vs. Buzz vs. Lionheart
The saga of the Intercontinental Championship has been well documented over the past two seasons. Only 5 men have held the belt and current champion Travis Sanders is a big reason why. We all know about DJ Craft’s 416-day reign which led him to the World Revolution Championship after collecting a year’s worth (12) of defenses. Sanders does not want to wait 416 days to get a crack at a World Championship himself. Craft collected a year’s worth of defenses, even though it took him over a year to do so. Sanders, on the other hand, has already rounded up four defenses in two months, trying to reach the standard set by Craft in record time. Cordin Ganea, Buzz and Lionheart have all been victims in Sanders’ path but they think collectively someone has a better shot of gaining the gold. Ganea, who made his way over from other EWA companies, immediately set his sights on Buzz and the two had a historic two out of three falls match at Beach Brawl that saw Ganea not only win, but be the first man to beat Buzz in a KDF Rules match. But he lost to Sanders. Buzz, who made his dramatic return to RWR this season and immediately began a warpath that was temporarily subdued by Ganea, claimed he was next in line and immediately demanded a shot at the title. But he lost to Sanders. Then came Lionheart, the former Connor Spaulding, who repackaged himself after taking a hiatus after dropping the United States Championship and being sent over to the Green Brand. He quickly climbed the IC ladder and picked up a key win over Ganea to get himself a title shot. But he lost to Sanders. At Resurgence 75, Ganea did the impossible and made Sanders tap out, putting his name back in the hat. But then came Lionheart, who beat Ganea before and had his claim. Then came Buzz who beat Lionheart the week prior. All three men had legitimate claims at the title so Sanders, the fighting champion that he is, accepted all three challenges which leads to this four-way dance for the belt and a spot in Rise From The Ashes. Will the Sanders train continue to roll or can one of these other challengers finally overcome the King of Scots.
RWR Women's Championship: Olivia Taylor (c) vs. Apathy
As hated as Razor Sharp has been throughout Retaliation, Olivia Taylor has equally been as hated among the women of the brand. Olivia, upgrading in her mind from being Max Krimson’s right hand woman in The Red to Razor’s Sharp’s right hand woman after betraying Max, quickly made enemies as she interjected herself in a Women’s Championship match between then champion Kimiko Matsui and Amanda Spade. On top of that, she won the title! Painting the proverbial target on her back, Razor vowed to have her back while she was champion, but the curse of the title, as we would learn throughout the season, struck again as Razor was ejected and Amanda Spade won the title, and the champion once again fell on her first defense, a common theme all season. Apathy, meanwhile, was holding down the short-lived Women’s Tag Team division with ISHGON-V as the two turned away challenger after challenger until dropping the titles to Matsui and Akaru-hime until their retirement at Beach Brawl. On the same show, Apathy would once again enter the Women’s Championship division, facing off with Olivia and 4 other women in an Elimination Chamber match for the title. In that match, a spot between Olivia and Apathy went horribly wrong, injuring Apathy and threatening her in-ring career. While out of action, the title curse continued until Akaru won the title at Inferno. It was then Razor decided that Akaru’s husband, the RWR United States Champion Chris Jones, pay up for Razor helping him win that title. Jones refused, Razor kicked him out of the group and made the match anyways for Phoenix Cup where Olivia won her second Women’s Championship. The celebration would be short lived as the next week on Retaliation, Apathy would make her shocking return, with Sister Fister and ISHGON-V by her side and would make Olivia’s life a living hell, making her live through the hell Apathy lived through while out injured. These two will finally square off at Supernova II, with the title on the line. Will the curse strike once again and favor Apathy’s revengeful rampage on The Violet Queen or will Olivia finally buck the odds and not only vanquish Apathy once again, but give the belt a more permanent home it hasn’t had in quite some time.
Hope Rogers w/ Faith Rogers vs. Hayley Sheppard
And now the other side of the Rogers family. Hope Rogers and Hayley Sheppard both debuted in RWR together and ended up becoming a tag team. Why someone from the Inner Circle would align herself with someone like Hope didn’t add up for many people but nothing odd or bad came from it and it was accepted. While always on the cusp of picking up the Women’s Tag Team Championships, they never got a hold of them before they disappeared, largely due to the debut of Jenna Reid, who immediately targeted the duo and cost them chance after chance at the gold. A new light, or should i say glow, would come in the roster shakeup as Hope’s mom, Faith Rogers, would join her daughter and her daughter’s friend on Retaliation and the trio would find success against Reid, Olivia Taylor and Amanda Spade at Inferno. It would seem like Faith would welcome Hayley into the family due to her strong alliance with Hope. That wasn’t part of Hayley’s ultimate plan, though as that all changed during Phoenix Cup 2k19. While Faith saw an early exit in the tournament, both Hayley and Hope would make deep runs in the bracket before they both met up with Goddess Dawn in the Cup Final. Hayley’s jealousy would grow as Faith would openly back Hope in the tournament and not mention Hayley at all. This led to Hayley’s assaulting Faith before the Cup final, a match Hope ended up winning. However, Hayley would goad Hope into using her free match not on a championship but on her after torturing Faith, revealing she only teamed with Hope to lure her into the Inner Circle and weaken the Foundation for good. Obviously that plan failed as Hope did use her Cup win on facing Hayley at Supernova II, with, hopefully, Faith in her corner. Who will come out on top in what became a year-long con job. Will Hayley finish the job or will Hope’s stock continue to rise with a massive win for her and her mom.
Max Silverstein vs. "Marvelous" Matt Matthews
Let’s go back to Resurgence 67, the first green brand show since the shakeup. “Marvelous” Matt Matthews was just revealed as Cole Raynor’s tag partner in their match against DJ Craft and Vic T. Myser. The two up and comers gelled well as a team, showing up an impressive display en route to a victory. Then the unthinkable happened. Matthews turned on Cole. For reasons that have yet to be explained by Matthews, he attacked and targeted the former World Revolution Champion for months on end. They would encounter again on Resurgence 71, following Cole being forced to replace Mr. Troupe in a Phoenix Cup quarterfinal match against Max Silverstein. Max defeated the unprepared Cole but gave him his props as he left the ring for Cole. Then Matthews struck again, going after RWR’s superhero before Max returned to fend off MMM and save Cole. This pissed off MMM, claiming that Max was taking everything away from him, especially when Max beat Matthews in a Phoenix Cup semifinal, and how he used to be strong and powerful as King Krimson, the leader of The Red, the previous season, but now he’s a shell of his former self. Silverstein has been trying to mend all the bridges he burned as Krimson this season, trying to turn a new leaf as a new person. Some successfully and some unsuccessfully. However, despite not reaching some of the successes he hit last season, Silverstein has still proven he is a top name to be feared in RWR, especially with what some would call an unlikely run to the Phoenix Cup Final. If Silverstein, the main catalyst for helping Cole try to break free from The Court of Darkness, truly wants to break free from his former self, he needs to be able to prove he can prove people like Matthews wrong who want to continue to dig up his past, or MMM will use Silverstein as a stepping stone to get to Cole once more and eventually the World Revolution Championship.
KDF Rules 15 minute Ironwoman: Amanda Spade vs. Jenna Reid
It all started at Inferno. Olivia Taylor was on the path of “retiring” older female talent after putting Apathy on the shelf for what she thought was for good, and targeted Faith Rogers in her bloodlust for more. Faith, at the time, was settling in on Retaliation after the shakeup and was aligning herself with her daughter Hope Rogers and her tag team partner Hayley Sheppard. Olivia needed backup if she wanted Faith. So she found a likely ally in Jenna Reid. Reid debuted in May and immediately set her sights on the smaller and younger Hope Rogers, looking to use her impressive strike power on what she perceived as a smaller and weaker opponent. With Hayley stepping in to help her partner, Reid embarked on a long war with the duo, eventually overcoming the two with the help of Amanda Violence, earning a spot in the last RWR Women’s Tag Team Championship match at Beach Brawl. So a history of warring with Hope and Hayley got Reid a slot on the team. Olivia then got an unlikely ally in Amanda Spade. At the time, Spade, who had choked out Olivia for the RWR Women’s Championship at Spring Classic after Olivia screwed her out of a one on one shot against then champion Kimiko Matsui the month before at Collision Course, was coming off a quick defeat to Hope, where Hope even broke out of Spade’s usually deadly rear naked choke. She wanted revenge on Hope and would get it by joining Olivia’s team. Then Inferno came, and Olivia’s trio lost, and that began a large landslide of issues between Spade and Reid, both blaming each other for the loss. Their paths would meet again in the 2nd round of Phoenix Cup 2k19 where Spade won via submission. Reid wanted to prove that Spade’s win was a fluke and she’s a one trick pony, so she challenged and beat Spade in a knockout match, showcasing her one trick pony. With one win a piece on each other, the two will square off in the ultimate rubber match. Not only will the two women be the first in a KDF rules match, but it will have a 15 minute time limit. The winner with the most KO’s and tapouts in that time will win. Which discipline will reign supreme?
Thunderdome: Adam Shaw vs. Martin Star
After being unceremoniously kicked out of 7 Deadly Sins and being shipped off to Retaliation, Adam Shaw seems to have turned a new leaf. After rejecting Razor Sharp’s offer to join forces, Shaw, instead, began to target those with questionable pasts attached to them, with what he calls “purging their sins”. He targets these people and torments them physically and psychologically to make them pay for their past actions and finally give those they tortured comeuppance by torturing them. After successfully driving Razor to the brink of insanity, he then targeted Martin Star. Star’s target largely stems from two things. The accusation of poisoning Jake Rogers from last year’s Supernova, which he still claims innocence to this day, and with how poorly he treated former tag team partner Jarek Vanders, rejecting amends and even taking his World Heavyweight Championship away from him at Beach Brawl, his first in his career. Despite Star finally hitting the highest of highs this season, Shaw has emerged to make him pay. Shaw’s 1 for 1 so far but can he purge another at Supernova II.
RWR World Tag Team Championships: Blue Garycudas (c) vs. Inner Circle vs. The Coalition
What a successful and unlikely run the Blue Garycudas have had this season. In the beginning of the year, Brandon Richards, despite how he finished in the first Rise From The Ashes Tournament, was on the outside looking in for the second one and was basically directionless, especially after the short Far Beyond Better reunion tour that was suddenly ended. Brandon saw Shinigami Brooks enter the tag ranks with Jack Johnson and decided to take his chances on it too, so he had his brother and manager, Gary, scout out potential partners for him. Gary did just that and found the answer, him! Gary took some Fitzwell Fighting System supplements, got his contract changed to an active roster deal and became Brandon’s partner and thus the Blue Garycudas were born. And Gary was actually holding his own and winning, somehow. After falling short in a title shot at Beach Brawl where Gary almost single handedly beat P3ntagami, the brothers won the titles at Inferno and have held and defended them until now. Then you have the Resurgence representatives in The Coalition. The team with the most experience and accolades in the match, Max Height and Thunder have either been champion or in contention nearly all season long. They won the titles twice this year, at the RFTA 2 Final and at Sky’s The Limit. A win here will tie them with Team Fuck Yo Masks with the most title reigns with 3. Then there’s Inner Circle. Steven Wright and Chad Bryant have seen success in every single promotion they’ve been in under the EWA umbrella, except RWR, where they’ve been playing backup for Doug Sheppard all season. However, now they’ve finally gotten their time to shine and with all their singles success under their belts, a reign with the tag titles seems likely. It’s the brothers on a Cinderella run against the veteran tag team against the decorated singles wrestlers looking to win tag gold.
Submission: Josh Wolfe vs. Damien Longoria
The rarest of rare occurrences happened at Resurgence 69 where Damien Longoria found himself in some nice company. Longoria made Josh Wolfe tap out. Wolfe, who has tapped out as much as lightning has struck in this same spot, saw it as a brief stepback, but would climb his way back up the ladder. Longoria, however, went wild with it. Bragging about what he saw as a milestone victory, he started up the Damien Longoria Submission Challenge, where he would challenge others in submission only matches to prove his grappling dominance. After making stablemate Kenji, Murphy and even Arcangel tap out, Longoria reset his sights at Wolfe, who had to renotice him. The two would agree to a match at Supernova II and would square off in the main event of Resurgence 76, where Wolfe came out on top, making Longoria tap out with a new submission hold then further shocked the world by being the one to challenge Longoria to a submission match. With Longoria taken back by being challenged at his own game, can he do the unthinkable and make Wolfe top out twice or will he fall victim once more to the ever-evolving legend who is rumored to have a new hold up his sleeve.
Hell in a Cell: LCE vs. Unchained Union
The stable warfare of season 1 has begun to condense into a large number of trios within RWR. One of the most dominant trios was the unlikely grouping of the Unchained Union. Mike Metal, Mike Burke and Vlad Alucard ran rampant on Resurgence, and despite not winning any gold, they certainly made their presence known on the green brand. However, upon the roster shakeup, the trio moved over to Retaliation and have had to hit the reset button on their dominance. However, they could get a big boost in doing so with a win over this newly-reunited trio in Los Coolernables de Espectáculo. Early on in Season 2, the trio became a separated duo as Adam Browne retired and Shinigami Brooks and Eddie Cool were placed on opposite brands. Cool quickly found success in becoming the RWR World Revolution Champion and Brooks, after the short Far Beyond Better reunion tour, found an unlikely ally in Jack Johnson. The two, becoming P3ntagami, battled for months with The Libby Brothers until becoming RWR World Tag Team Champions at Pick Your Poison. Then Eddie Cool was moved to Retaliation at the shakeup and LCE was together once again, this time with the wildcard being Jack Johnson. Things didn’t go so swimmingly, however. P3ntagami lost the titles to the Blue Garycudas and lose their rematch and tension rose between the former tag champs. So much so that Johnson hasn’t been seen since Phoenix Cup 2k19, leaving Cool and Brooks out in the cold for this match. Will this match of top RWR trios even be a trios match, with Johnson leaving Cool and Brooks out in the cold for the proverbial vultures in Unchained Union or will a settlement be made so that this war can fully take place.
CA White vs. Norns
There were two targets in CA White’s sights upon his shocking return to professional wrestling in the beginning of this season. Far Beyond Better and Norns. He and the rest of his new stable, The Fallen Kingdom made their presence known within RWR and despite falling to the more experienced FBB at Redemption, White’s family has made life a living hell all season long on Retaliation, even seeing Abigail gain the RWR World Women’s Championship briefly. However, White’s main missions have yet to be completed as he claims to “right a wrong of his past” in Norns, a man he knew very well stemming from The Dungeon days years and years ago. And for the past month and a half, it has been a family effort to go after Norns, seeing Bael and Wyatt attack Norns backstage, nearly isolating him in a handicap match to follow before Donovan Pain evened the odds, but it didn’t work a second time as Oliver and CA took out the duo before Phoenix Cup. Then Norns, unsuccessful in his title match against Pain, was forced to run a Fallen Kingdom gauntlet up to this match at Supernova. However, this is a Norns we haven’t seen in quite some time. Norns was on the top of his game this season, holding the EWA World Championship for a number of months and threatening for RWR World Championship gold in between. However, for Norns to reach the top once more, he will have to take out a relic of his past, before it takes him out instead and leaps him in the race for the World Title in season 3.
The Green Void vs. Danny Richardson vs. Vic T. Myser
This is the odd case where all roads intersect to one big collision. It all began in June where Vic T. Myser criticized Danny Richardson over his facial hair. Danny, not afraid to part with it once again since he claimed he found his best success without it, put it on the line at Beach Brawl against VTM, putting up his chest hair at Richardson’s request. Danny won and shaved the big man’s chest clean. Richardson would then move onto a feud with the newest member of Resurgence in The Green Void, who was coming off a deadly win over Doug Sheppard in an “Enter The Void” match at the same event. However, Void would be the one coming out on top and would take on DJ Craft at Phoenix Cup 2k19. Those have learned that when DJ Craft is champion, they have to also take on his defacto bodyguard in Myser, who had no problem getting his nose dirty for the good of Fitzwell Fighting Systems. Void had his fair share of issues with Myser and after losing his title match with Craft, moved onto finally getting rid of him for good at Resurgence 76. However this brought the return of Richardson, who took out both men after the match. Danny was angry about losing his title shot and getting eliminated in the first round of the Phoenix Cup and took it out on the last two people he was feuding with. So all roads have intersected together and this trio will now have to settle their differences once more.
RWR United States Championship: Chris Jones (c) w/Akaru-hime vs. Brandon Deaver
Brandon Deaver quickly became the poster boy of not only marajuana usage or Taco Bell consumption, but also highdeas and being in the right place at the right time. Deaver, who has quickly grown a cult following in recent weeks, whether he realizes it or not, decided to catch Razor Sharp at his weakest, pretend to be a fan, and ask for his autograph, which actually worked somehow and turned into a championship match at Supernova. Deaver, who has failed earlier in the season at capturing the TV Championship, has a gigantic wall between him and becoming the United States Champion, and it’s not passing a drug test. It’s the revitalized Chris Jones. Seen as a goofy teddy bear since his return to wrestling, it took the aforementioned Razor to take him under his wing and find his killer instinct to destroy Matt Matthews twice and become the US Champion. Despite Razor subsequently dumping him on the side of the road, Jones never lost his mean streak and has annihilated challenger after challenger, quickly becoming one of the longest reigning and defending US Champs ever. Deaver will have to concoct another one of his highdeas to overcome this Grande Meal before it devours him first en route to Rise From The Ashes III.
RWR Women's Revolution Championship: Katherine Isujun (c) vs. Paige vs. Ellie vs. Bella Angel
Ever since her shocking RWR debut at Resurgence 66, TWA’s Katherine Isujun has mowed down plenty of big names in her path to quickly becoming the Women’s Revolution Champion, including Faith Rogers, Lily Thatcher and Jennifer Jett. However, thinking she’s cruising through the division, she took her foot off the pedal and suffered defeats to three of Resurgence’s up and coming women in Bella Angel, who was involved in the first Women’s Revolution Championship match, Paige and Ellie. On top of that, the three women all traded wins with each other with Bella beating Ellie, Ellie beating Paige and Paige beating Bella. Can Isujun rediscover her dominance or will one of these other three shock her once again, this time for the title.
Jake Rogers vs. Davey Rogers
You want to talk about a family feud, this is a textbook example of it. There’s no Steve Harvey or funny borderline sexual answers to be had in this one. It’s going to be blood vs blood in a bloodfest as father and son duke it out. Let’s start from the beginning. As Jake Rogers was recovering from being poisoned and fighting his way through Rise From The Ashes 2, Jake and Faith’s children, Davey and Hope, finally signed up with RWR as active competitors. Interestingly enough, however, was in their contracts that they would start on opposite brands than their parents to “find their own footing”. Now a little lore. While the Rogers have always lived the pirate lifestyle, their kids never fully adapted to it. Hope, who never fell out with her parents, especially Faith, but stuck with the nautical theme in her life, adapting a love of mermaids, as is visually seen in her current attires. Davey, however, always rejected the lifestyle and was always at odds with Jake and Faith, especially Jake who tried time and time again to pass the family ship down to him, only to be rejected every time. Davey, instead, picked up a more flamboyant and party-going style, once again as seen in his current attires. Davey’s outgoing attitude would win over the fans while on Retaliation, making his own name for himself. But, as soon as the roster shakeup happened, the family was back together and it wasn’t exactly going to be a happy reunion. Davey would keep his space as much as he could in the meantime. Meanwhile, Jake would suffer a brutal injury at Inferno, landing right on his neck and would aggravate it further thanks to his old rival Martin Star who immediately targeted it and quickly took out Jake in their Phoenix Cup 2k19 first round match. And with that, Jake would be on the shelf to recover, but neck injuries can be tricky and Jake isn’t exactly a young guy, so he had to weigh his options and think about his family, even the family that hated him. Jake then made his decision and on Retaliation 31, he promoted an announcement but would soon be cut off by Davey and the two would brawl to the back with Davey shouting out “not on your terms, on mine”. We would soon discover that Jake was going to announce his retirement, but Davey’s hatred of his father wouldn’t allow Jake to leave on his own terms. He was going to do it himself and make up for years of, what he saw as, Jake’s forcing his lifestyle upon him, which led to this match, which Jake accepted despite doctor’s orders. Will Davey be the one to retire his dad or will Jake’s ship continue to sail for years to come.
Hardcore Deathmatch: Lily Thatcher vs. Amanda Violence
At Resurgence 72 in a Phoenix Cup quarterfinal match, Amanda Violence busted many brackets as she scored in what some would call an upset win over former Women’s Revolution Champion Lily Thatcher. While Violence would come up short in her quest for the Cup, Lily felt that Violence’s win was a fluke and challenged her to a rematch at Resurgence 75 which she won. Violence wouldn’t let that be enough, however, as she faked a knee injury then attacked Lily with a steel chair, challenging her to her favorite match type at Supernova II, a hardcore deathmatch. Seeing one of these earlier this season with Adam Shaw and Mr. Troupe at Pick Your Poison, we’ve seen just how violent and hectic these can be, and this one is sure to be no different.
Resurgence RFTA Wildcard: Titan vs. Ace Violence vs. Johnny Draco vs. Aaron Miles vs. Keith Moniz vs. Kenji
As mentioned before, with two brands comes two wildcard slots, and the Resurgence field is as loaded, if not moreso. Starting with the same predicament as Retaliation, the Court of Darkness is well represented with 4 entrants in former TV Champion Johnny Draco, Aaron Miles, Keith Moniz and Ace Violence. While there has been turmoil within the group stemming from the Cole Raynor saga, will the group come together to ensure the right guy wins and possible become the stable’s only representative in the field, or will there be enough chaos where the other two choices sneak in with a win of a lifetime. Kenji is the most veteran of the field under the RWR banner but has yet to see a breakout moment happen for him, often seen as a forgotten member of Kimiko-gun, even being used as an exhibition dummy for Damien Longoria’s short-lived Submission Challenge last month. Another overshadowed stable member who has recently been freed from said stable is Titan. The big monster has fallen short in TV and Intercontinental Championship chances and took it upon himself to boot Adam Shaw from the 7 Deadly Sins and end the stable. Now, the monster if finally finding his own footing, with the help of Bella Angel, and a win here will certainly guide him in the right direction of his new solo path.
Retaliation RFTA Wildcard: Andre Baker vs. Jimmy Caine vs. Jay Eera vs. Brian Fuller vs. Jack Phoenix vs. Honey Roy Palmer
The aptly named “wildcard” spot in the Rise From The Ashes Tournament has propelled the careers of those who were bestowed with that honor. It all started with Adam Shaw’s unlikely run in the first RFTA tournament. Many people didn’t think he belonged in the field but a solid showing, followed with an RWR World Revolution Championship win in the coming months solidified his status as a top dog on the roster. The next year, Doug Sheppard won the right and despite a rough tournament, he used it to an eventual RWR Golden Ticket victory and made his name along with the rest of the Inner Circle. Now RFTA III is on the horizon and with two brands comes two wildcards in the field. First comes the Retaliation wildcards, which is chock full of wrestlers with championship experience in RWR. First comes the Fitzwell Fighting System stablemates in Andre Baker, Jack Phoenix and Honey Roy Palmer. Baker, a former TV Champion, hit a little bit of a sophomore slump this season but still saw himself in Intercontinental Championship contention in the midseason. A win here would certainly be a big payoff for the quiet season he’s had. However, Palmer and Phoenix, who have been teaming in recent months, both had United States Championship shots, with Phoenix being a former US Champ and Palmer making his name known during the Lethal Lottery for a title shot early in the season. The trio could certainly group up on the others to secure the spot for someone in their stable, but only one man can win the spot. Trying to play spoiler for FFS is Brian Fuller, the older brother of current United States Champion Chris Jones, who was the final TV Champion before cashing in the shot in a losing effort to his brother, and WWO mainstays Jay Eera and Jimmy Caine, who have both also recently fallen victim to Jones late in the season.
Brand Warfare: Golden Ticket on the line: Doug Sheppard vs. Duke Dice
It all started at Phoenix Cup 2k19, when Retaliation’s Doug Sheppard’s announcement was interrupted by Resurgence’s Duke Dice, who basically claimed that Sheppard was taking too long to cash in and he was willing to buy it from him and take it off his hands. Sheppard was not for that and assaulted Duke along with the rest of the Inner Circle, Steven Wright and Chad Bryant. Duke’s offer was then taken off the table, instead getting it put on the line in an unprecedented match at Supernova. And the main caveat of all this is since it’s on the line, Sheppard can’t cash in until after the end of this match — if he retains that is, otherwise Duke gets the instant title match. On top of all this, Resurgence leads this season’s Brand Warfare 5-4, so either Duke helps the green brand take the cake, or Doug brings it to a 5 all draw. Will the winner of this match find a way to close out Supernova II as a World Champion? They can, but only after winning this match first.
Be sure to tune in on Saturday, Sept. 28 @ to catch all the action as the second season of RWR comes to a close and Rise From The Ashes III looms in the distance.
Edit: A date.
submitted by RWR_Wrestling to efeds [link] [comments]

2019.01.30 15:52 santaschesthairs 2019 is looking to be a really, really exciting year for film. I’ve compiled a comprehensive list of 50+ upcoming original/adapted films that are showing real promise, and 25+ major franchise/sequel films. Includes summaries, links, and details. Enjoy!

TL;DR: this year is insane.

Let me dive right in - hopefully I hit the 300 character minimum.

Original/adapted/stand-alone films:

A horror film from break-out director Ari Aster (Hereditary).
A young couple travels to Sweden to visit their friend’s rural hometown and attend its mid-summer festival. What begins as an idyllic retreat quickly descends into a bizarre and violent competition at the hands of a pagan cult.
Directed by Ari Aster. Starring Florence Pugh, Jack Reynor, Will Poulter and William Jackson Harper.

Ad Astra
A sci-fi film with Brad Pitt - I’m itching for a trailer.
Army Corps engineer Roy McBride embarks on a mission across the galaxy to discover the truth about his father, who disappeared in space 20 years ago while searching for signs of alien life.
Directed by James Gray. Starring Brad Pitt, Tommy Lee Jones and Ruth Negga.

Knives Out
Rian Johnson is a touch controversial after The Last Jedi, but he's undeniably very talented. He directed the best Breaking Bad episode after all.
Modern-day murder mystery in the classic Agatha Christie whodunit style.
Directed by Rian Johnson (The Last Jedi, Ozymandias). Starring Daniel Craig, Lakeith Stanfield, Chris Evans, Michael Shannon, Christopher Plummer, Ana de Armas, Jamie Lee Curtis and Toni Collette.

The Irishman
A Scorsese film with Netflix that’s gone seriously over-budget, bound to be enjoyable.
A mob hit man recalls his possible involvement with the slaying of Jimmy Hoffa.
Starring Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Harvey Keitel, Joe Pesci and Ray Romano.

Little Women
A Greta Gertwig film with an outstanding cast. I’m excited. I also have a feeling this will have some play in the 2019 Oscars
Four sisters come of age in America in the aftermath of the Civil War.
Directed by Greta Gertwig. Starring Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Eliza Scanlen, Florence Pugh, Laura Dern, Meryl Streep, Timothée Chalamet, James Norton, Louis Garrel and Bob Odenkirk.

Velvet Buzzsaw
You’ve probably already seen the trailer. An art-world horror-satire from Dan Gilroy, on Netflix in Feb.
Big money artists and mega-collectors pay a high price when art collides with commerce. After a series of paintings by an unknown artist are discovered, a supernatural force enacts revenge on those who have allowed their greed to get in the way of art.
Directed by Dan Gilroy. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo and Toni Collette.

Uncut Gems
Adam Sandler taking on a serious role by the directors of Good Time (2017). If it has any of the same intensity or grit as Good Time this could be awesome.
Set in the diamond district of New York City, Howard Ratner, a jewelry store owner and dealer to the rich and famous, must find a way to pay his debts when his merchandise is taken from one of his top sellers and girlfriend.
Directed by the Safdie brothers. Starring Adam Sandler, Idina Menzel, Lakeith Stanfield and The Weeknd.

The Report
This got pretty great reviews at Sundance, I’m excited.
The story of Daniel Jones, lead investigator for the US Senate’s sweeping study into the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation Program, which was found to be brutal, immoral and ineffective. With the truth at stake, Jones battled tirelessly to make public what many in power sought to keep hidden.
Directed by Scott Z. Burns. Starring Adam Driver, Annette Bening, Jon Hamm and Jennifer Morrison.

Ford v. Ferrari
Awesome cast, great story, and directed by the guy behind Logan.
Follows an eccentric, determined team of American engineers and designers, led by automotive visionary Carroll Shelby and his British driver, Ken Miles, who are dispatched by Henry Ford II with the mission of building from scratch an entirely new automobile with the potential to finally defeat the perennially dominant Ferrari at the 1966 Le Mans World Championship.
Directed by James Mangold. Starring Christian Bale, Matt Damon, Jon Bernthal and Tracy Letts.

Late Night
This got some pretty great reviews at Sundance.
Legendary late-night talk show host’s world is turned upside down when she hires her only female staff writer. Originally intended to smooth over diversity concerns, her decision has unexpectedly hilarious consequences as the two women separated by culture and generation are united by their love of a biting punchline.
Directed by Nisha Ganatra. Starring Emma Thompson Mindy Kaling.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood
Holy shit.
A faded TV actor and his stunt double embark on an odyssey to make a name for themselves in the film industry during the Helter Skelter reign of terror in 1969 Los Angeles.
Directed by Quentin Tarantino. Cast includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Al Pacino, Timothy Olyphant, Tim Roth, Kurt Russell, Michael Madsen, Bruce Dern, Dakota Fanning,James Marsden, Damian Lewis, Luke Perry, Emile Hirsch, Damon Herriman and Scoot McNairy.
jesus christ i cannot wait

If this is as spoopy as the trailer uh oh.
Husband and wife Gabe and Adelaide Wilson take their kids to their beach house expecting to unplug and unwind with friends. But as night descends, their serenity turns to tension and chaos when some shocking visitors arrive uninvited.
Directed by Jordan Peele. Starring Lupita Nyong'o, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss and Tim Heidecker.

The Lighthouse
Next film from the guy behind the VVitch
The story of an aging lighthouse keeper named Old who lives in early 20th-century Maine.
Directed by Robert Eggers. Starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson.

High Life
Really good reviews, sci-fi that looks like it could be pretty trippy.
A father and his daughter struggle to survive in deep space where they live in isolation.
Directed by Claire Denis. Starring Robert Pattinson.

A Terrence Mallick movie, so it's going to be divisive, but the plot does have potential.
Told through real wartime letters, this love story finds a couple in conflict with the members of their close-knit town, their church, their government, and even their friends — all of which brings them to a dramatic choice.
Directed by Terrence Mallick. Starring August Deihl and Valerie Pachner.

I know every movie is called a sign of the times, but this one seems particularly geared towards the current politics. Really good Sundance reviews.
A star athlete and top student, Luce’s idealized image is challenged by one of his teachers when his unsettling views on political violence come to light, putting a strain on family bonds while igniting intense debates on race and identity.
Directed by Julius Onah. Starring Kelvin Harrison Jr., Naomi Watts, Tim Roth and Octavia Spencer.

The Souvenir
This one just got rave reviews at Sundance.
A quiet film student begins finding her voice as an artist while navigating a turbulent courtship with a charismatic but untrustworthy man.
Directed by Joanna Hogg. Starring Honor Swinton-Byrne, Tom Burke, Tilda Swinton and Richard Ayoade.

Untitled Noah Baumbach Project
This one is obviously a bit unknown. But the cast looks amazing, and if it turns out as good as The Meyerowitz Stories, I can't wait to watch. Will be a Netflix film.
Directed by Noah Baumbach. Starring Adam Driver, Scarlett Johannsen, Laura Dern and Greta Gertwig.

Honey Boy
Great reviews from Sundance, 100% on RT as of now.
The story of a child star attempting to mend his relationship with his law-breaking, alcohol-abusing father over the course of a decade, loosely based on Shia LaBeouf’s life.
Directed by Alma Har’el. Starring Shia LaBeouf, Lucas Hedges and yada yada.

Queen & Slim
Very interesting premise, and Daniel Kaluuya.
The film centers on a black man and black woman who go on a first date that goes awry after the two are pulled over by a police officer at a traffic stop. They kill the police officer in self-defense and rather than turn themselves in, they go on the run.
Directed by Melina Matsoukas. Starring Daniel Kaluuya and Jodie Turner-Smith.

The Farewell
Another film with good reviews out of Sundance.
A headstrong Chinese-American woman returns to China when her beloved grandmother is given a terminal diagnosis. Billi struggles with her family’s decision to keep grandma in the dark about her own illness as they all stage an impromptu wedding to see grandma one last time.
Directed by Lulu Wang. Starring Awkwafina.

Long Shot
A comedy with a cool cast by Jonathan Levine.
A political journalist tries to hook up with his old babysitter, who now holds an important government position.
Directed by Jonathan Levine. Starring Seth Rogen, Charlize Theron and Alexander Skarsgård.

I was disappointed with Bohemian last year, so I'm reminding myself to be sceptical, but I hope this is excellent. Trailer here.
The story of Elton John's life, from his years as a prodigy at the Royal Academy of Music through his influential and enduring musical partnership with Bernie Taupin.
Directed by Dexter Fletcher. Starring Taron Egerton (as Elton), Jamie Bell, Richard Madden and Bryce Dallas Howard.

The Goldfinch
Based on the bestselling book. Director of Brooklyn.
A boy in New York is taken in by a wealthy family after his mother is killed in a bombing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In a rush of panic, he steals ‘The Goldfinch’, a painting that eventually draws him into a world of crime.
Directed by John Crowley. Cast includes Ansel Elgort, Finn Wolfhard, Aneurin Barnard, Oakes Fegley, Ashleigh Cummings, Willa Fitzgerald and Nicole Kidman.

Big Time Adolescence
It's a little too early to tell from the Sundance reviews, but I really hope this is good. Pete Davidson and the guy who plays Sam in American Vandal star.
A 16 year old virgin with a growth hormone deficiency slowly gets corrupted by his hero, an aimless college dropout.
Directed by Jason Orley. Starring Pete Davidson and Griffin Gluck.

Triple Frontier
The cast for this Netflix action thriller is awesome. If the trailer and director is anything to go by though, this looks really promising.
Struggling to make ends meet, former special ops soldiers reunite for a high-stakes heist: stealing $75 million from a South American drug lord.
Directed by J.C. Chandor (Margin Call). Starring Ben Affleck, Oscar Isaac, Charlie Hunnam and Pedro Pascal.

Chaos Walking
I hope this is amazing, but the premise sounds incredibly difficult to pull off. Good cast and director, so fingers crossed. I'm using the book description here.
A dystopian world where all living creatures can hear each other's thoughts in a stream of images, words, and sounds called Noise.
Directed by Doug Liman (Edge of Tomorrow). Starring Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley.

The Rosie Project
Few details are out. Ryan Reynolds, based on a good book.
An unlucky-in-love university professor creates an elaborate questionnaire in an effort to find a wife and meets an unconventional woman who doesn’t match any of his “requirements”, but might be the perfect woman for him.
Directed by Ben Taylor. Starring Ryan Reynolds.

The Beach Bum
The trailer looks completely wack. Make sure you watch it:
An irreverent comedy about the misadventures of Moondog, a rebellious stoner and lovable rogue who lives large.
Directed by Harmony Korine (Spring Breakers). Starring Matthew McConaughey, Snoop Dogg, Zac Efron and Isla Fisher.

I don't know much about this one, but the director previously made Snowpiercer, Okja and my favourite, Memories of Murder. I'm excited.
All unemployed, Ki-taek’s family takes peculiar interest in the Parks for their livelihood until they get entangled in an expected incident.
Directed by Bong Joon-Ho. Starring Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun, Jo Yeo-jeong and Choi Woo-shik.

I Am Mother
This one comes from nowhere. An indie sci-fi with with an interesting plot, and good Sundance reviews.
A teenage girl is raised underground by a robot “Mother”, designed to repopulate the earth following an extinction event. But their unique bond is threatened when an inexplicable stranger arrives with alarming news.0
Directed by Grant Sputore. Starring Hillary Swank , Clara Rugaard-Larsen and Rose Byrne.

Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile
You’ve more than likely heard of this one. Ted Bundy film starring Zac Efron. I’m not sure how excited I am for the film, but Efron’s performance is apparently very good.
A chronicle of the crimes of Ted Bundy, from the perspective of his longtime girlfriend, Elizabeth Kloepfer, who refused to believe the truth about him for years.
Directed by Joe Berlinger. Starring Lily Collins, Zac Efron and John Malkovich.

The Nightingale
The second film from the director of the Babadook. Really promising (and slightly divisive) reviews out of Sundance. Fun fact: you can kinda measure the divisiveness of a film on RT by comparing the percentage meter with the average rating. If the percentage is high but the average rating is low, it shows that the film is all-round solid and inoffensive. If the percentage rating is lower but the average rating is still high/moderate, it means there’s a large gap between those who loved and didn’t like it. Anyway, back to the Nightingale. I’m excited - doubly so since it’s an Aussie film.
In 1829, Claire, a 21-year-old Irish convict, chases a British soldier through the rugged Tasmanian wilderness, bent on revenge for a terrible act of violence he committed against her family. She enlists the services of an Aboriginal tracker named Billy, who is also marked by trauma from his own violence-filled past.
Directed by Jennifer Kent. Starring Aisling Franciosi, Sam Claflin, Damon Herriman and Ewen Leslie.

The Dead Don't Die
Another awesome cast, definitely one to look forward to. The plot summary isn’t out, but it’s a comedy zombie flick.
Directed by Jim Jarmusch. Starring Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Selena Gomez, Chloë Sevigny, Austin Butler, Steve Buscemi and Tilda Swinton.

Tilda Swinton seems to be working a lot, woah.
Memoria revolves around a character (portrayed by Tilda Swinton) who suffers from exploding head syndrome, a psychological condition in which a person experiences loud noises when falling asleep or waking up.
Directed by Apichatpong Weerasethakul. Starring Tilda Swinton and Jeanne Balibar.

Where'd You Go, Bernadette
The trailer for this, particularly the music, wasn’t good. The content of the trailer shows a lot of potential though, and the book is apparently really good. Also: Richard Linklater.
When architect-turned-recluse Bernadette Fox goes missing prior to a family trip to Antarctica, her 15-year-old daughter Bee goes on a quest with Bernadette’s husband to find her.
Directed by Richard Linklater. Starring Cate Blanchett ,Emma Nelson, Billy Crudup, Kristen Wiig, Judy Greer and Laurence Fishburne.

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
Tom Hanks seems made for this role. Should be good.
The story of Fred Rogers, the honored host and creator of the popular children’s television program, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood (1968).
Directed by Marielle Heller. Starring Tom Hanks, Matthew Rhys and Chris Cooper.

High Flying Bird
I’ll make this quick: Excellent reviews so far. Netflix in Feb. Steven Soderbergh. Shot on an iPhone. Moonlight writer.
During an NBA lockout, a sports agent, Dean, presents his rookie client, Erick Scott, with an intriguing and controversial business opportunity.
Directed by Steven Soderbergh (Ocean’s 11). Starring André Holland Zazie Beetz Jeryl Prescott Kyle MacLachlan Caleb McLaughlin Zachary Quinto.

The Cradle
I don’t know much about this one but the plot intrigues me. For some reason it reminds me of Denis Villeneuve's early film, Incendies (if you haven’t watched yet, make it your next film - it’s incredible.)
A young couple not ready to expect their first baby track down a cradle, only to make a discovery that will change their family forever.
Directed by Hope Dickson Leach. Starring Jack O'Connell and Lily Collins.

The Woman in the Window
A Rear Window-esque movie with a great cast and director. Really hoping this is great, cos I love these kind of plots.
An agoraphobic woman living alone in New York begins spying on her new neighbors only to witness a disturbing act of violence.
Directed by Joe Wright. Starring Amy Adams, Gary Oldman, Julianne Moore and Wyatt Russell.

Gemini Man
The plot is crazy, but the cast and director can definitely pull it off.
Henry Brogen, an aging assassin tries to get out of the business but finds himself in the ultimate battle: fighting his own clone who is 25 years younger than him and at the peak of his abilities.
Directed by Ang Lee. Starring Will Smith, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Clive Owen and Benedict Wong.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco
Yet another film with great reviews from Sundance.
Jimmie Fails dreams of reclaiming the Victorian home his grandfather built in the heart of San Francisco. Joined on his quest by his best friend Mont, Jimmie searches for belonging in a rapidly changing city that seems to have left them behind.
Directed by Joe Talbot. Starring Jimmie Fails, Jonathan Majors, Rob Morgan and Tichina Arnold.

Blinded by the Light
Sundance musta been real great this year, cos once again we have another movie with good reviews out of it. Apparently wholesome and inspiring.
In 1987, during the austere days of Thatcher’s Britain, a teenager learns to live life, understand his family, and find his own voice through the music of Bruce Springsteen.
Directed by Gurinder Chadha. Starring Viveik Kalra, Nell William and Hayley Atwell.

Before You Know It
Good reviews. Sundance. Family comedy.
A long-kept family secret thrusts codependent, thirty-something sisters Rachel and Jackie Gurner into a literal soap opera. A journey that proves that you really can come of age, at any age.
Directed by Hannah Pearl Utt. Starring Hannah Pearl Utt, Jen Tullock and Judith Light.

Little Monsters
A washed-up musician teams up with a teacher and a kids show personality to protect young children from a sudden outbreak of zombies.
Directed by Abe Forsythe. Starring Lupita Nyong'o, Josh Gad, Alexander England and Nadia Townsend.

Jojo Rabbit
I'll watch anything Taika makes, but this looks insane - one of my most hyped. (I accidentally deleted this from the list while editing!!)
Jojo Rabbit is about a young boy living during World War II. His only escapism is through his imaginary friend, an ethnically inaccurate version of Adolf Hitler, who pushes the young boy’s naive patriotic beliefs. However, this all changes when a young girl challenges those views and causes Jojo to face his own issues.
Directed by Taiki Watiti. Starring Taiki Watiti (as Adolf Hitler), Roman Griffin Davis, Thomasin McKenzie, Scarlett Johansson, Sam Rockwell, Rebel Wilson and Alfie Allen.

The Lodge
A spoopy film that was well received at Sundance.
Two siblings spend the night alone with their new stepmother. Stuck in a remote mountain cabin, the trio are terrorised by a supernatural force.
Directed by Veronika Franz, Severin Fiala. Starring Riley Keough, Jaeden Lieberher and Lia McHugh.

World War I film. Plot unknown.
Directed by Sam Mendes. Cinematography by Roger Deakins.

Dragged Across Concrete
Two policemen, one an old-timer, the other his volatile younger partner, find themselves suspended when a video of their strong-arm tactics becomes the media’s cause du jour. Low on cash and with no other options, these two embittered soldiers descend into the criminal underworld to gain their just due, but instead find far more than they wanted awaiting them in the shadows.
Directed by S. Craig Zahler. Starring Mel Gibson, Vince Vaughn, Don Johnson and Jennifer Carpenter.

I’m Thinking of Ending Things
A Charlie Kaufman film, set for Netflix.
An unexpected detour causes a woman who is trying to figure out how to break up with her boyfriend to rethink her life.
Directed by Charlie Kaufman. Starring Brie Larson and Jesse Plemons.

My thoughts

Feel free to ignore lol
After finally managing to finish this compilation, reading plots and wikis and watching trailers, I cannot believe how many good films there are coming out. This is reminding me of 2017, when I made a similar post - and 2017 was an absolutely amazing year overall, especially in light of the relative disappointment of 2018. There’s just so much promise in every category - horror, thriller, biopics, drama, action, comedy… and if you count zombie films as a genre unto themselves, then yeah, that too.
Of course, I cannot wait for Tarantino’s flick. But after that it’s hard to pick ordered favourites - Knives Out, The Dead Don’t Die, Us, The Report and Luce are films I cannot wait for, but there are so many others I’m pumped for - and I haven’t even gone into the blockbusters.

Speaking of…
For the franchise and sequel films, I haven’t gone to the effort of adding plot and cast details. They’re huge, you’ll hear all about them anyway.

Franchise/Sequel/Remake films

Godzilla: King of the Monsters
Star Wars: Episode IX
Zombieland 2: Double Tap
Pokémon: Detective Pikachu
The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
Avengers: Endgame
Captain Marvel
Toy Story 4
It: Chapter Two
John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum
Spider-Man: Far from Home
Lion King
The New Mutants
Alita: Battle Angel
Dark Phoenix
Men in Black International
Fast & Furious presents: Hobbs & Shaw
Artemis Fowl
Charlie’s Angels
Kingsman 3
Sonic the Hedgehog
Frozen 2

I’m genuinely delirious. I told myself I would get this post done before I went to sleep and I am now totally exhausted. There were far more movies than I anticipated. This year is ridiculous and it has been mean to me. Of course, if I missed anything let me know and I’ll add it once I’ve woken up!
Oh, and if you want to follow me on Letterboxd:
Hope you enjoy! :)
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2017.08.20 17:29 feedreddit MATTIS on NEW AFGHANISTAN strategy -- SNEAK PEEK: REMNICK on Trump -- BANNON to WaPo: ‘No administration in history has been so divided’ -- ELISE STEFANIK's wedding

MATTIS on NEW AFGHANISTAN strategy -- SNEAK PEEK: REMNICK on Trump -- BANNON to WaPo: ‘No administration in history has been so divided’ -- ELISE STEFANIK's wedding
by [email protected] (Daniel Lippman) via POLITICO - TOP Stories
BULLETIN -- NYT’S MICHAEL GORDON in Amman, Jordan: “Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said that President Trump, who had been accused by lawmakers of dragging his feet on Afghanistan, had settled on a new strategy after a ‘rigorous’ review.
“‘The president has made a decision,’ Mr. Mattis told reporters on an overnight flight that arrived in Amman ... on Sunday. ‘I am very comfortable that the strategic process was sufficiently rigorous.’ Mr. Mattis received the authority in June to send nearly 4,000 troops to Afghanistan so that the United States military could expand its efforts to advise Afghan forces and support them with American artillery and air power. But Mr. Mattis had refrained from building up the American force there until the Trump administration settled on a broader strategy. Mr. Mattis declined to say what steps the president had ordered, including troop levels. He added that Mr. Trump wanted to announce the details to the American people, and that the president was expected to do so in coming days. …
“The decision to send troops is just one component of a strategy that is also expected to outline ways to pressure Pakistan to shut down the sanctuaries that the Taliban and other extremist groups have maintained on its territory. ‘It is a South Asia strategy; it not just an Afghanistan strategy,’ Mr. Mattis said.”
Good Sunday morning. SNEAK PEEK -- DAVID REMNICK in the New Yorker, coming out tomorrow: “Early last November, just before Election Day, Barack Obama was driven through the crisp late-night gloom of the outskirts of Charlotte, as he barnstormed North Carolina on behalf of Hillary Clinton. … During his speech in Charlotte that night, Obama warned that no one really changes in the Presidency; rather, the office ‘magnifies’ who you already are. So if you ‘accept the support of Klan sympathizers before you’re President, or you’re kind of slow in disowning it, saying, ‘Well, I don’t know,’ then that’s how you’ll be as President.’” … A look inside the magazine
-- WORTH NOTING: Obama has not publicly responded to Trump’s comments post-Charlottesville except to post a tweet quoting Nelson Mandela.
MARK LANDLER and MAGGIE HABERMAN: “With Bannon’s Ouster, Question Remains Whether His Agenda Will Be Erased, Too”
-- JOSH DAWSEY and MATT NUSSBAUM: “The departures from Trump’s White House have come at a dizzying pace in recent weeks: multiple communications directors, the chief of staff and the press secretary have all left, along with top aides on the national security council and a number of CEOs from influential business councils. But none of the departures are likely to change the dynamics as much as that of the polarizing Bannon, whose ouster on Friday could alienate conservatives, hearten some who feared his brand of populism-nationalism, and dial down the fights inside 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
‘“Bannon is the intellectual heart and soul of the Trump movement,’ said Mark Corallo, a prominent GOP operative who served briefly as the spokesperson for Trump’s private legal team. ‘He was the think tank. He’s the idea generator. … He was the guy who was the most thoughtful about how to enact the agenda, how to build a coalition.’”
BREITBART’S LEAD STORY -- “Report: Powerful GOP Donor Sheldon Adelson Supports Campaign to Oust McMaster”
-- BANNON SPEAKS to Bob Costa and John Wagner, who reported from Bedminster: “‘If the Republican Party on Capitol Hill gets behind the president on his plans and not theirs, it will all be sweetness and light, be one big happy family,’ Bannon said. ... ‘No administration in history has been so divided among itself about the direction about where it should go,’ Bannon said, adding that Trump’s base is frustrated by a congressional agenda that has dovetailed more with traditional Republican priorities than the agenda Trump championed.”
--“Breitbart bullish on Bannon return, promises ‘aggressive expansion,’” by Cristiano Lima: “Breitbart News is riding high amid its reunion with executive chairman Steve Bannon. ... ‘I think we definitely are planning on stepping up our game,’ Breitbart News Washington editor Matthew Boyle said during the outlet’s weekly SiriusXM show on Saturday. ‘[W]e’re planning a lot of aggressive expansion and much more aggressive reporting than we’ve already been doing ... We’ve been a pirate ship without a captain for a year ... We’re thrilled to have our captain back.”
THERE WE GO! -- DAILY MAIL SAYS IVANKA AND JARED PUSHED BANNON OUT: “How Jewish convert Ivanka got ‘Bannon the Barbarian’ to go: Trump’s daughter ‘helped to force out’ aide blamed over President’s failure to condemn neo-Nazi rally … Chief strategist Bannon, 63, helped orchestrate the President’s election victory … But many blamed him for Trump’s failure last week to condemn neo-Nazis … ‘Pushed out’ by daughter Ivanka and her husband because of his far-Right views”:
-- FRONT PAGE OF THE BALTIMORE SUN: “Jared Kushner’s firm seeks arrest of Maryland tenants to collect debt,” by Doug Donovan: “The real estate company owned by Jared Kushner, son-in-law and top adviser to President Donald Trump, has been the most aggressive in Maryland in using a controversial debt-collection tactic: getting judges to order the arrest of people who owe his company money. Since 2013, the first full year in which the Kushner Cos. operated in Maryland, corporate entities affiliated with the firm’s 17 apartment complexes in the state have sought the civil arrest of 105 former tenants for failing to appear in court to face allegations of unpaid debt, The Baltimore Sun has found.”
-- TIMES OF ISRAEL: “Abbas says Trump administration ‘in chaos’”: “‘Each time they reiterate their commitment to a two-state solution and the stop to settlement building, Abbas says. ‘I urge them to tell Netanyahu that, but they are deterred.’ ‘I don’t even know how they are dealing with us, because his entire administration is in chaos,’ he adds.”
MNUCHIN RESPONDS TO CRITICS IN HIS YALE CLASS -- via Zach Warmbrodt: “I don’t believe the allegations against the president are accurate. I believe that having highly talented men and women in our country surrounding the president in his administration should be reassuring to you and all the American people.” Mnuchin’s full statement
NEW POLL -- “Trump’s Job Rating Is Below 40 Percent in Three Key Midwest States,” by NBC’s Mark Murray: “President Donald Trump’s job-approval rating in the three states that helped propel him to the White House – Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – stands below 40 percent, according to a trio of NBC News/Marist polls of these key states in the Midwest. In addition, Democrats enjoy double-digit leads in Michigan and Pennsylvania on the question of which party voters prefer to control Congress after the 2018 midterms, and they hold an 8-point advantage in Wisconsin.
“And in all three states, more than six-in-10 voters say Trump’s conduct as president has embarrassed them, versus just a quarter who have said it’s made them proud. These three NBC/Marist polls were conducted Aug. 13-17 – after the August 12 unrest and violence in Charlottesville, Va., as well as in the midst of President Trump’s multiple responses to that unrest and violence.”
ABOUT YESTERDAY ... -- BOSTON GLOBE FRONT PAGE: “MAKING A STAND AGAINST RACISM … Resolute and ready, they marched … Rally by tens of thousands is peaceful but pointed” -- A1 pdf
-- “‘Free speech’ rally speakers, little heard, end event quickly,” by the Boston Globe’s Beth Healy: “By 12:45 p.m., only 45 minutes into their official program, organizers of the Boston Free Speech rally ended the event and were escorted by police out of the park, to chants of ‘Go home, Nazis’ from the crowd. A Facebook post for the event listed 14 speakers and was scheduled to last for two hours.”
-- @realDonaldTrump: “Great job by all law enforcement officers and Boston Mayor @Marty_Walsh. Our great country has been divided for decades. Sometimes you need protest in order to heal, & we will heal, & be stronger than ever before! I want to applaud the many protesters in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!”
… AND IN CHICAGO: “7 shot, 1 fatally, in West Pullman attack among 33 shot in 13 hours,” by the Chicago Tribune’s Elva Malagon and Denease Williams-Harris.
WHAT OTTAWA WANTS YOU TO READ -- “The Trump Unit: Inside Canada’s PMO squad to save NAFTA,” by the National Post’s Alexander Panetta: “The Canadian government has created an election-style nerve centre to handle White House-related challenges and officials who describe its operations say it has about eight regular staff: two former trade officials, two senior PMO officials, an ambassador, a writer, a cabinet minister, and it’s run by a young staffer with a reputation for staying cool while smothering political fires.
“The most blistering inferno it’s preparing to confront is a scenario where the president threatens NAFTA. Everybody involved anticipates the threat level from Trump will rise with the heat of negotiations. A well-connected Washington lobbyist milling about last week’s talks said a Trump pullout threat is virtually assured: ‘Almost 100 per cent.’ Trade lawyer Dan Ujczo said it’s a logical play for the president: ‘The threat of withdrawal is his key negotiating leverage.’”
GREAT STORY -- ANNIE KARNI on NEWT GINGRICH: “Newt Gingrich goes to spouse school”: “Last week, Newt Gingrich sat in a classroom surrounded by 11 women and one other man, furiously jotting notes. In the weeklong intensive, where classes ran from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with only a short cafeteria lunch break in between, the former House Speaker and onetime presidential candidate received a crash course in a new role: invisible spouse. When he moves to Rome with his third wife, Callista Gingrich, to become husband of the Ambassador to the Holy See, the ubiquitous Fox News talking head, will have no official diplomatic role abroad, beyond being generally presentable and essentially not heard from.
“It will be a challenge for an outspoken sometimes-booster, sometimes-critic of the Trump administration, who said he does not plan to terminate his contract with Fox News. But like former President Bill Clinton during his wife’s two bids for the presidency, Gingrich will be taking on the secondary role of booster after a public life spent demanding the limelight. Aware that this new, less celebrated, role will take some getting used to, Gingrich eagerly enrolled himself in what he referred to, excitedly, as ‘spouse school.’
“The program, run by the State Department and hosted on the Arlington campus of the Foreign Service Institute, was started in the 1950s, when it was referred to simply as the ‘Wives Seminar.’ Over the years, a State Department official said, it ‘has evolved into a variety of training and orientation programs for foreign affairs family members.’ Today, topics include: ‘expectations and personal goals for your time overseas,’ ‘post morale,’ ‘the official residence,’ ‘navigating a public diplomacy role,’ ‘legal issues and ethics,’ as well as ‘stress management.’”
WHAT AMERICA IS READING … -- THE BIRMINGHAM (ALA.) NEWS: “With Jones, Democrats dreaming big again: ‘Mount Rushmore of political upsets’” … ARIZONA REPUBLIC: “Sign of respect for the eclipse: Navajos won’t be watching ‘sacred communication’ between sun and moon” ... CHARLOTTE OBSERVER: “HERITAGE OR ‘SHAMEFUL HISTORY’?: Gastonia’s Confederate monument, one of dozens standing quietly on N.C. public property, inspires loyalty even as people question its message” … JANESVILLE (WIS.) GAZETTE: “Now available: One-fourth of business space vacant in downtown Janesville.”
REMEMBERING ARTHUR FINKELSTEIN – NYT’s Sam Roberts: “Finkelstein, a reclusive political Svengali who revolutionized campaign polling and financing and helped elect a bevy of conservative candidates, including President Ronald Reagan and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel, died on Friday night in Ipswich, Mass., where he lived. He was 72. ... Mr. Finkelstein was among the first political strategists in the late 1970s to grasp the potential of a United States Supreme Court ruling that allowed putatively independent political committees to spend money on behalf of individual candidates and causes. ... He also pioneered sophisticated demographic analyses of primary voters and methodical exit polling, and of using a marketing strategy, called microtargeting, to identify specific groups of potential supporters of a candidate regardless of their party affiliation.” … Statement by his family … National Review profile
-- AP: “Comedian, civil rights activist Dick Gregory dies,” by Daisy Nguyen: “Dick Gregory, the comedian and activist and who broke racial barriers in the 1960s and used his humor to spread messages of social justice and nutritional health, has died. He was 84. Gregory died late Saturday in Washington, D.C. after being hospitalized for about a week, his son Christian Gregory told The Associated Press. He had suffered a severe bacterial infection. As one of the first black standup comedians to find success with white audiences, in the early 1960s, Gregory rose from an impoverished childhood in St. Louis to win a college track scholarship and become a celebrated satirist who deftly commented upon racial divisions at the dawn of the civil rights movement.”
SUNDAY BEST -- JAKE TAPPER talks to OHIO GOV. JOHN KASICH on CNN’s “STATE OF THE UNION”: TAPPER: “If everything continues like it has been, does a Republican need to step forward to challenge President Trump in three years?” KASICH: “Well, Jake, as you said, I don’t have any plans to do anything like that. I’m rooting for him to get it together. We all are. We’re only like seven months into this presidency. … What we have to start thinking about, all of us, not just the president, but down where we live, in the neighborhoods, in the communities, we’ve gotta build a stronger America. Look, why am I on this show. You asked me to come on.
“I’m trying to have a responsible voice. To call things out when they need to be called out, but also to support my country. So what I hope is going to happen … I hope we’re going to have stability, the president is going to learn from these episodes and we’re going to do better. That’s what I hope is going to happen. We’ll have to wait and see.”
-- FOX NEWS SUNDAY: “Trump ally blast congressional leaders,” by Kyle Cheney: “A top ally of President Donald Trump offered hints Sunday of a coming war on Republican leaders in Congress, a battle presaged by the return of former chief strategist Steve Bannon to Breitbart News.
“‘There’s a lack of leadership on one side of Pennsylvania Avenue,’ said David Bossie, a former Trump campaign adviser, appearing on ‘Fox News Sunday.’ Bossie, who said he’s spoken to Bannon ‘many times’ in recent days, said Bannon’s departure from the administration will help the administration at ‘leaning into Congress.’ He repeatedly decried a ‘failure of leadership in the House and Senate.’ ‘Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan have to step up,’ Bossie said, adding, ‘The House and Senate leadership has not bought into the president’s agenda fully.’”
-- SEN. TIM KAINE talks to JOHN DICKERSON on CBS’S “FACE THE NATION” about Robert E. Lee’s statue in the Capitol: “Every state gets two statues to put in Statuary Hall or throughout the capital. Just using Virginia as an example. The state gets to choose two people to represent the entire scope of the state’s history. Virginia obviously chose George Washington, the father of the country. But the second choice that was made in 1909, and has never been changed, is Robert E. Lee.
“I think as you look at the scope of Virginia history here in 2017, and if you want there to be two people to really stand for who Virginia is, why wouldn’t you think about Pocahontas who, had she not saved John Smith’s life, we wouldn’t even be here possibly? Why wouldn’t you think about a Barbara Johns, who led a school walkout in Prince Edward County that ultimately became part of the Brown versus Board, desegregation decision? Why wouldn’t you think about Governor Wilder, the grandson of a slave, a decorated Korean War combat veteran, who became the first elected African-American government in the history of the country? I think from 2017 looking backward, I think Virginia could probably do better in the two people that we choose to stand for us in Statuary Hall. And I think a number of the other states can do better as well.”
-- SIREN:@facethenation: Sen. Scott: "'As we look to the future it's going to be be very difficult for POTUS to lead. His moral authority remains compromised.'"
JAKE’S TIP OF THE DAY -- WEAR THESE SHOES (Allbirds are kind of great) -- NYT Style:“To Fit Into Silicon Valley, Wear These Wool Shoes,” by Nellie Bowles.
DEPT. OF TAX REFORM IS HARD -- “Left warns Democrats in tax reform fight,” by Elana Schor: “Liberal activists who hounded the GOP throughout its failed Obamacare repeal bid are gearing up to hit any Democrat who strays from the fold on tax cuts for the wealthy — including some of the party’s most politically vulnerable incumbents. Democrats were spared the sight of their progressive base battling centrists on Obamacare, which proved a uniquely unifying issue for both wings of the party. But there’s no guarantee that taxes will be another kumbaya moment for Democratic leaders, who have long struggled to contain tensions between red-state lawmakers facing tough reelections and a grassroots emboldened by resistance to President Donald Trump’s agenda. …
“Liberal groups are vowing to fight the GOP tax bill as hard as they battled Obamacare repeal. They’re expecting Democrats to stand together against any legislation that cuts taxes for the rich, even if it also trims tax bills for others. And they’re prepared to unleash their energized grassroots on any lawmaker who doesn’t get on board.”
IMPORTANT -- THE HILL’S BEN KAMISAR: “The Republican National Committee expanded its massive fundraising lead over the Democratic National Committee in July as the Democrats posted their worst July haul in a decade. The DNC raised just $3.8 million in July, compared to the $10.2 million raised by the RNC in the same month. While the GOP has no debt, the DNC added slightly to its debt in July, which now sits at $3.4 million.”
THE OPPOSITION -- “Amateur sleuths hunt for Trump bombshells,” by Darren Samuelsohn: “Nearly 3,000 miles from special counsel Robert Mueller’s Washington offices, another investigation into President Donald Trump is underway. This one unfolds in the public libraries and coffee shops of San Francisco, where a self-employed 40-year-old named Geoff Andersen has worked since November for 16 hours a day, seven days a week, burning through nearly $45,000 in personal savings and donations from friends and family in pursuit of hidden truths about Trump’s rise to power. … Andersen is not alone in his largely solitary quest. Countless amateur sleuths are on the case, from a short-order cook in Belfast whose research was recently cited by the Daily Beast to a Florida art teacher who tells POLITICO he is applying his pattern-recognition skills to Trump's sprawling business empire.
“Undaunted by a lack of subpoena power or search warrants, and the government’s vast legal and technical expertise, countless people like these are poring through Trump’s personal and business records, as well as overlooked 2016 campaign clues. They share their findings through email, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and even tips to reporters and the FBI. Most labor in obscurity, but all are motivated by the lottery-like odds of a discovery that has eluded journalists and prosecutors but which just might bring down a president.”
VALLEY READ -- KARA SWISHER: “Jeff Immelt has emerged as the front-runner to become Uber’s CEO”: “While the tension on the board of the car-hailing company remains high — due of late to an ugly lawsuit that one of its major investors, Benchmark, is waging against its ousted co-founder and CEO Travis Kalanick — sources said that a majority of the board is coalescing around the experienced Immelt.
“That could certainly change, said sources, and there are two other executives who are also still being considered, neither of whom is a woman, as some had hoped. Sources said a vote of Uber’s directors is likely to happen within the next two weeks, which does not have to be unanimous, although most directors are hoping it will be. In any case, Immelt has pulled ahead, said several sources. One of Immelt’s earliest and strongest supporters on the board is Arianna Huffington, said sources, but he is also the top choice of several directors. Others still undecided — including Benchmark, which has weakened its status because of the lawsuit and ensuing publicity — have become convinced that Uber needs to hire someone who can quickly deal with a number of pressing and problematic issues and consider Immelt fully capable of handling that well.”
MEDIAWATCH -- “Jersey Gov. Chris Christie no longer a candidate to replace Mike Francesa at WFAN,” by N.Y. Daily News’ Bob Raissman: “Scratch Chris Christie off the list of candidates to replace Mike (Sports Pope) Francesa when he leaves WFAN (if he actually does) in December. FAN sources said the suits searching for Francesa’s replacement have informed the New Jersey Governor his Gasbag services will not be needed.”
BONUS GREAT WEEKEND READS, curated by Daniel Lippman, filing from Nantucket:
--“After The Flame,” by Wayne Drehs and Mariana Lajolo in ESPN the Magazine: “The 2016 Summer Games were supposed to bring Rio and Brazil to new financial and athletic heights. What’s left behind? A city and country shrouded by corruption, debt and broken promises.”
--“A Brief History of Traveling With Cats,” by Jackie Mansky in Smithsonian: “Fierce felines of history sailed the world, survived Europe’s crusade against them and made it all the way to Memedom.”
--“Bangalore, before the dystopia,” by Harish C Menon in Quartz – per The Browser’s description: “Bangalore has gone from Garden City to Garbage City in 30 years. Renowned as the tech hub of India, producing 10% of India’s GDP, the city is ‘a disaster in slow motion’. Population and area have tripled with little in the way of planning or infrastructure. Green spaces and watercourses have been concreted over. Quality of life has fallen to the lowest of all Indian cities. Residents ‘grapple with self-combusting foaming toxic lakes”. By 2025 Bangalore ‘will be simply uninhabitable.”
--“‘Y’all Sent Me to Washington at an Interesting Time,’” by The Atlantic’s Molly Ball: “A freshman Republican lawmaker [Jim Banks] tries to stay on the right side of his constituents—and his principles—deep in Trump Country.”
--“What the Heck Is Guam? A Guide for the Perplexed,” by Shannon Togawa Mercer in Lawfare: “It sits almost 1,500 miles south of Japan and around 2,100 miles from North Korea. ... According to historians, Guam was discovered and populated by Austronesian peoples around 4,000 years ago. Guam got a jump on contact with Europeans when Ferdinand Magellan stumbled upon Guam in 1521.”
--“The partition goes on: A Pakistani perspective,” by Mohammed Hanif on Al-Jazeera: “Like many Pakistanis I saw my first Indians in London and was surprised that they were a bit like us. Most Indians and Pakistanis have the same reaction when they meet. It seems as if they are brought up to believe that a community of ferals lives across the border. The most we know about each other is from moving images from films and songs, and a bit from books.”
--“James Baldwin’s Istanbul,” by Suzy Hansen in PublicBooks: “Baldwin was delighted by the Turkish custom of holding hands — even men could be openly affectionate. It was easier to be gay in Istanbul than in America, and easier to be black ... [The city was] a place anyone could go to live and feel free.”
--“What should you do when two ISIS suspects are interrogated right before your eyes?” by Anthony Loyd in the New Statesman: “I felt intrigued but uncomfortable, watching it all unfold, the bound and kneeling men waiting for the whip or worse. I knew that if I left the room both prisoners would get thrashed for sure, and likely tortured. If I stayed, they might get thrashed anyway, in front of me, which might have implied my acquiescence. But I also wanted to know what would happen. It was awkward either way.”
--“The Fight of His Life,” by Brian Castner in Esquire: “Afghan Army Captain Noorullah Aminyar was once a valuable ally to the American military. But after a failed defection attempt and three years in detention, his asylum claim now rests on the argument that the U.S. has lost its longest war.” (h/t
--“Mr. Nice Guy,” by Wired’s Nicholas Thompson: “Instagram’s Kevin Systrom wants to clean up the %[email protected]! Internet.”
--“My Life Lessons in Rust Belt Racism,” by Kim Kingsley on Medium:
--“The White Lies of Craft Culture,” by Lauren Michele Jackson in Eater: “How the world of small batch, single origin, and totally artisanal erases the people of color who made it possible.”
SPOTTED: Rep. Joe Crowley (D-N.Y.) at Cisco Brewery on Friday on Nantucket ... John King on an American Airlines flight from DCA to Nantucket on Saturday morning.
WEEKEND WEDDINGS -- “Elise Stefanik, Matthew Manda” -- N.Y. Times: “Ms. Stefanik, 33, is a United States congresswoman, representing the 21st District of New York. She is a Republican serving on the House Armed Services Committee; the Committee on Education and the Workforce; and the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. Elected in 2014 at age 30, she is the youngest woman elected to Congress in United States history. Previously she served in the Office of the Chief of Staff in the White House under President George W. Bush. She graduated from Harvard. ...
“Mr. Manda, 34, is the marketing and communications director in Alexandria, Va., for the Media Group of America, which owns and operates the media outlet Independent Journal Review. Previously he was the communications director for Representative Kevin Yoder, Republican of Kansas, and as the political director for 2010 campaign for Senator Jerry Moran, Republican of Kansas. The groom graduated from the University of Kansas. ... The couple met through mutual friends in January 2012 at a party hosted by the bride in Washington.” With pic
-- Pool report: “At the Hall of Springs in Saratoga State Park, guests noshed on Baby lamb chops, a raw bar pork belly sliders, potato pancakes, antipasti in honor of the bride's Italian roots, a Cannoli bar and a gelato bar. The Bride and groom had a choreographed dance to ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.’ The father and daughter dance was to Hamilton’s ‘Dear Theodosia.’” Pics
SPOTTED: Russ Schriefer and Nina Easton, Lenny and Amelia Chassé Alcivar, Ryan Coyne, Joel and Laura Cox Kaplan, Anita and Tim McBride, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), Reps. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.), Will Hurd (R-Texas), Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), Mimi Walters (R-Calif.), David Young (R-Idaho), John Katko (R-N.Y.), Susan Brooks (R-Ind.) and Joe Wilson (R-S.C.), New York State Assemblyman Dan Stec, NY State Conservative Party Chair Mike Long, Megan and Tyler Foote, Phil Musser, Mike Leavitt, Tom and Corinne Hoare, Lindley and Dustin Sherer, Aly and Graham Wheeler, Ali and Stuart Siciliano, and Anthony Katie Pileggi.
-- Jonathan Nabavi, vice president of public policy and government affairs at the NFL, and Catherine Hansen, who works on congressional relations at Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, were married Saturday in Bar Harbor. NYT announcement with pic … Wedding pic Andrew Kovalcin, Rebecca and Matt Haller, Bradley Hayes, Adriana Brizuela and Chris Gindlesperger, Nicole Gustafson, Ali Tulbah and Alana Nolan, Sergio Rodriguera, Allison O’Brien, Nat and Melissa Sillin, Dan Finucane and Danielle Bruccheri and Sean Fairchild.
ENGAGED -- Andrea Saul, who works on communications at Facebook and was national press secretary for Romney 2012, got engaged on Saturday to David Nosbusch, who works in business development at Box and is a Harvard Business School grad. He proposed on the 18th green at 3 Creek Ranch in Jackson Hole, with friends and family nearby. They met through mutual friends watching college football at NorthStar Cafe in San Francisco.
WELCOME TO THE WORLD – Krista Zuzenak, co-founder of mKz Inc and member of Team Pelosi, and Brian Zuzenak, partner at Moxie Media and member of Team McAuliffe, “welcomed their 3rd roommate Isabelle Emma on [Friday]. Isabelle weighed 7 pounds 4 ounces and despite many bets that Baby Z was a boy she surprised and melted the hearts of her parents, family and friends. The couple fell in love across departments at the DCCC and can’t wait to introduce her to the entire Pelosi/McAuliffe Family.” Pic
BIRTHDAYS: Fox News’s Fin Gomez, celebrating in Iceland running a half marathon … Lea Berman ... Chuck Campion, chairman and co-founder of Dewey Square Group (hat tips: Rick Ahearn) … Jenny Backus ... Amb. Michael Froman, a distinguished fellow at CFR and former USTR, is 55 (h/t Andrew Bates) ... Brad Fingeroot … Politico’s Doug Palmer ... Scott Rothrock, CTO at advanced-manufacturing company Xometry and a Politico alum ... BPI birthday twins: partner Ben LaBolt and COO Ann Marie Habershaw (h/ts Jen Nedeau and Addie Whisenant) … Al Roker is 63 ... former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) is 82 ... former Sen. George Mitchell (D-Maine) is 84 ... Targeted Victory co-founder Zac Moffatt ... Connie Chung … Rae-Lynn Ziegler, director of social media and outreach for the Washington Free Beacon (h/t Anton Vuljaj) … Rachel Thomas, who works on external relations, gov’t and regulatory affairs at IBM ... Susan Aspey ... Kendell (Coletti) Mountain ... Gina Keeney, partner at Lawler, Metzger, Keeney& Logan and a FCC alum (h/t Jon Haber) ... Brianna McCullough … Rep. Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) is 56 (h/t Josh Brown) … Rep. Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) is 51 ... Sen. Steve Daines (R-Mont.) is 55. He’s celebrating by grilling burgers with his family at home and his three dogs. ... former Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (D-Tex.) is 77 ... Tarrah Cooper, managing director at Mercury ... Matt Shapanka is 3-0 ... Morgan Murtaugh ... Jody Serrano (h/t Amy Sisk) ... Alice Frost Richardson ...
... CNN senior media reporter Oliver Darcy ... Jim Hock, adviser at PSP Capital and former Commerce COS … Meghan Grant ... Madeline Shepherd, associate director of federal policy at Council for a Strong America (h/t Rachel Wein) ... Gordon Neal ... Hayley Herrin (Peterson), senior correspondent at Business Insider ... Patrick Drahi is 54 ... Matthew Gould is 46 ... David Ryan Adelman is 36 (h/ts Jewish Insider) ... Pat Collier IV, policy director at JB Pritzker for Governor … Jeff Morehouse is 37 ... Angelica Alatorre … Nicholas Himebaugh ... Kenny Swab ... Jordan Kittleson ... Shannon Travis ... Linnea Dyer Hegarty ... Katie Peters, comms director for Americans for Responsible Solutions ... Casey Badmington ... Eleni Roumel ... Steve Pfrang ... Shannon Harris ... Ari Goldberg, VP of comms at First Focus, is 44 ... Faryar Shirzad ... Jen Brown … Lona Valmoro … Bob Hudek … Ryan O’Keefe (h/ts Teresa Vilmain)
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2017.07.02 05:34 Jbps Favorite characters, friendships, and relationships?

I want this to be a positive topic so avoid bashing...I know everybody and their mother hates Hayley but I just want to know who everyone's favorites are and why.
My favorite characters are Freya and Vincent. Their actors are really talented and I enjoy their scenes. Freya is really interesting because she will do monstrous things for her family but I think she can also be the "best" of them--not Elijah. I think she needs an arc similar to Klaus rather than just being the all powerful witch that she is. Vincent's scenes are always a joy to watch and I like that he regularly calls out the originals. He's kind of judgmental but it makes sense because they're the antagonists to him. I think it's more of the bad writing than a character flaw though. I'd love to see how the story would look if they were told from his perspective.
I'm also really impressed with Hopes character. I know there's not a lot you can do with a child character whose defining trait is her innocence and purity but she pulls it off well. And Hope as the hollow gave me chills!
Another character I like is Josh. He's the most normal and well adjusted character so his presence is refreshing the few times I see him. I love his snarkiness and that he's very loyal to his friends.
Speaking of Josh, I love his friendship with Davina. It's really sweet and I love how they take care of each other without hurting or betraying each other. I like his friendship with Marcel too because they're so different. Marcel is the strongest vampire and hundreds of years old. Josh is the weakest and youngest vampire. Somehow they managed to be best friends.
I'm also liking Klaus and Hayley as co-parents and partners. They used to argue all the time but now they seem more at ease with each other.
As for ships, I like Freya and Keelin. It's a bit sudden because of the number of episodes and the kid napping is hard to look past but I like that someone takes care of Freya after 3 seasons of her tirelessly taking care of everyone else. She hasn't loved anyone since her husband and child died and Keelin makes her feel normal and human.
I like Kolvina as well. I always have. I can't really say why, but I am happy they get an ending together. They look good together and I liked the chemistry.
I've been enjoying this season so I just wanted to gush about it. I know it has its issues but I still love this show.
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2017.06.12 13:11 feedreddit GOP growing worried they’ll lose House -- MATTIS keeps his ‘distance’ from Trump -- MELANIA and BARRON move into 1600 Penn -- WAPO: Trump family lawyer JAMIE GORELICK gets pushback from friends -- B’DAY: Dina Powell

GOP growing worried they’ll lose House -- MATTIS keeps his ‘distance’ from Trump -- MELANIA and BARRON move into 1600 Penn -- WAPO: Trump family lawyer JAMIE GORELICK gets pushback from friends -- B’DAY: Dina Powell
by [email protected] (Daniel Lippman) via POLITICO - TOP Stories
Listen to the Playbook Audio Briefing ... Subscribe on iTunes ... Visit the online home of Playbook
Good Monday morning. THE BACKDROP -- Republicans are growing increasingly worried that they will lose the House of Representatives. The pervasive pessimism comes as there continues to be a dearth of legislative victories, and a toxic political environment that appears to be worsening. Of course, the midterm elections are nearly a year and a half away. But more than a dozen Republicans we’ve spoken to in the last few weeks say the prospect for political and legislative wins big and small is dimming. And as much as President Donald Trump has worked to woo over fellow Republicans with dinners at the White House and regular meetings with GOP leadership, it hasn’t had much of an impact on the overall state of play.
THE RANK AND FILE has been frustrated with the House committees, which have not produced a drumbeat of legislation to tout as victories. And the party is deeply split on health-care reform, a tax overhaul and infrastructure spending. Passing a budget to set the groundwork for tax reform is still seen as far off. And the congressional schedule doesn’t leave a lot of time to kick things into high gear. The House is in session for 13 more days and the Senate is in session for 14 more days before the July 4 recess. Not to mention, there’s serious concern in the GOP that there could be more revelations about President Donald Trump, and Robert Mueller’s investigation still remains the wild card. Attorney General Jeff Sessions testifying Tuesday before the Senate Intel Committee is expected to just add more drama to distract from the GOP agenda into the mix.
WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN? Republicans will be less willing to take risks as they shift into political survival mode.
**SUBSCRIBE to Playbook:
IVANKA’S FOX DOUBLE HEADER -- Ivanka Trump will be on “Fox and Friends” this morning in the 7 a.m. hour, and then Ainsley Earhardt will go to the White House Wednesday for a second interview, which will air Thursday.
BIG NEWS -- “D.C. and Maryland to sue President Trump, alleging breach of constitutional oath,” by WaPo’s Aaron Davis: “Attorneys general for the District of Columbia and the state of Maryland say they will sue President Trump on Monday, alleging that he has violated anti-corruption clauses in the Constitution by accepting millions in payments and benefits from foreign governments since moving into the White House.
“The lawsuit, the first of its kind brought by government entities, centers on the fact that Trump chose to retain ownership of his company when he became president. … But D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine (D) and Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh (D) say Trump has broken many promises to keep separate his public duties and private business interests. For one, his son Eric Trump has said the president would continue to receive regular updates about his company’s financial health.
“If a federal judge allows the case to proceed, Racine and Frosh say, one of the first steps will be to demand through the discovery process copies of Trump’s personal tax returns to gauge the extent of his foreign business dealings. That fight would most likely end up before the Supreme Court, the two said, with Trump’s attorneys having to defend why the returns should remain private.”
FIRST IN PLAYBOOK -- ISAAC DOVERE speaks with VIRGINIA GOV. TERRY MCAULIFFE: “Russia was actively involved in destabilizing our democracy,” and they had help from “treasonous” Americans, McAuliffe told Isaac Dovere in the latest episode of Off Message podcast, coming Tuesday morning. “Somebody had to give these people a roadmap,” McAuliffe said, though he wouldn’t name names. “So I believe somewhere in this, somebody was directing the Russians on whose names to use, what impact these certain people sending a memo would have on the American electorate. I mean, they just didn’t sit over in some cubicle over there somewhere in Moscow and figure this out.”
-- FIGHTING WORDS: WHAT MCAULIFFE SAID TO TRUMP, over dinner at the White House at the end of February for the National Governors Association reception: “I looked him face to face, four inches from his eyeballs, and said, ‘Everything you have done has hurt my economy.’”
-- MCAULIFFE hasn’t spoken to Trump since, but notes that when the president announced his new appointments to the Council of Governors in May, “Guess who didn’t get reappointed.” McAuliffe said on immigration policy and the travel ban in particular, but overall, he doesn’t think there’s ever a clear answer on what Trump administration policy actually is: “Not when this man is president.” More on what McAuliffe thinks about Hillary’s speaking out and Onward Together, the Democrats’ progressive divide, and his plans for 2018 -- and 2020 -- coming Tuesday
THE DIVIDED OPPOSITION -- ALEX BURNS and JMART on “Democrats in Split-Screen: The Base Wants It All. The Party Wants to Win,” in Dunwoody, Ga.: “Democrats are facing a widening breach in their party, as liberal activists dream of transforming the health care system and impeaching President Trump, while candidates in hard-fought elections ask wary voters merely for a fresh chance at governing. The growing tension between the party’s ascendant militant wing and Democrats competing in conservative-leaning terrain, was on vivid, split-screen display over the weekend. In Chicago, Senator Bernie Sanders led a revival-style meeting of his progressive devotees, while in Atlanta, Democrats made a final push to seize a traditionally Republican congressional district.
“It may be essential for Democrats to reconcile the party’s two clashing impulses if they are to retake the House of Representatives in 2018. In a promising political environment, a drawn-out struggle over Democratic strategy and ideology could spill into primary elections and disrupt the party’s path to a majority.”
-- IT’S WORTH NOTING: Democrats aren’t the only ones who have had to face a divided party and make a decision about whether to shore up the establishment, or let the activists take hold. Just ask Senate Majority Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.). He led the NRSC into battle in multiple primaries during the 2014 election in order to elect GOP candidates that could win in the general election.
TRUMP’S LEGAL TEAM -- NYT A1, “Role of Trump’s Personal Lawyer Blurs Public and Private Lines,” by Rebecca Ruiz and Sharon LeFraniere: “Marc E. Kasowitz, a New York civil litigator who represented President Trump for 15 years in business and boasts of being called the toughest lawyer on Wall Street, has suddenly become the field marshal for a White House under siege. He is a personal lawyer for the president, not a government employee, but he has been talking about establishing an office in the White House complex where he can run his legal defense.
“His visits to the White House have raised questions about the blurry line between public and private interests for a president facing legal issues. Mr. Kasowitz in recent days has advised White House aides to discuss the inquiry into Russia’s interference in last year’s election as little as possible, two people involved said. He told aides gathered in one meeting who had asked whether it was time to hire private lawyers that it was not yet necessary, according to another person with direct knowledge. …
“‘The president’s private lawyer is representing only his interests, not the interests of the United States government or the individual interests of the White House staff,’ said Robert F. Bauer, who was White House counsel under President Barack Obama.”
THIS TOWN -- “When a liberal power lawyer represents the Trump family, things can get ugly,” by WaPo’s Marc Fisher: “[Jamie] Gorelick ... finds herself under attack for taking on a share of the Trump family’s legal woes. ... In the most public slap, Hilary Rosen, a prominent Democratic strategist and lobbyist, tweeted, ‘Hey Jamie Gorelick, you’ve just poured that ‘Complicit’ perfume on yourself,’ a reference to a ‘Saturday Night Live’ parody ad that imagined an Ivanka Trump-branded scent. (Rosen declined to elaborate on the tweet, saying only, ‘It is what it is.’) ...
“In a quintessentially D.C. move, some longtime friends of Gorelick contacted for this article offered complimentary comments about her on the record, and then, after asking if they could make other remarks without attribution, bashed their colleague to smithereens. Those people will not be quoted in this article, by name or anonymously, as one tiny bulwark against outright awfulness.”
FOR YOUR RADAR -- “Macron’s party set for huge French parliamentary majority,” by Reuters’ Ingrid Melander and Michel Rose in Paris: “President Emmanuel Macron’s fledgling party is set to trounce France’s traditional main parties in a parliamentary election and secure a huge majority to push through his pro-business reforms, projections after the first round showed on Sunday.The vote delivered a further crushing blow to the Socialist and conservative parties that had alternated in power for decades until Macron’s election in May blew apart the left-right divide.”
-- “Trump May Not Visit U.K. This Year as Planned,” by NYT’s Glenn Thrush in Branchburg, N.J.: “President Trump is considering scrapping or postponing a planned visit to Britain this year amid a billowing backlash over comments he made after the recent terrorist attack in London, two administration officials said. Over the past week, Mr. Trump has expressed increasing skepticism to aides about the trip after coming under intense criticism for a misleading charge that he leveled against London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan. ... National Security Council and State Department officials were working on the details but had not undertaken the usual ‘preadvance’ trip to work out the specific logistics of joint appearances, said a person familiar with the situation.”
PENTAGON WATCH -- “Mattis Quietly Keeps Distance From Trump’s Most Divisive Moves,” by NYT’s Helene Cooper, Michael Gordon and Eric Schmitt: “Mr. Mattis … has appeared behind the lectern in the Pentagon briefing room only twice since he became defense secretary, the better to stay out of political debates, aides say. Mr. Mattis’s first, and only, appearance on the Sunday news shows did not come until four months into his term. Mr. Mattis, his friends and colleagues say, is driven by several considerations, including his belief that the military’s political neutrality can help hold together a deeply divided nation -- a point that Mr. Mattis hammered home in a commencement address last month at West Point in which he made one reference to the commander in chief and none to Congress.
“Instead, he pointed to ancient Athens in hailing apolitical ‘defenders who look past the hot political rhetoric of our day’ to protect ‘our experiment in self-governance.’ The speech by Mr. Mattis, who is registered to vote in Washington State, which does not require political affiliations be disclosed, stood in contrast to Vice President Mike Pence’s address at the United States Naval Academy commencement in which he referred to Mr. Trump a dozen times, calling him the ‘best friend the armed forces of the United States will ever have.’
“Mr. Mattis’s low profile is part of his strategy for exerting influence from within, at one-on-one meetings with Mr. Trump or the dinners he has with the president and General Joseph F. Dunford Jr., the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He was also at the White House last week while the president watched part of the highly anticipated congressional testimony by James B. Comey, the former F.B.I. director.”
-- MATTIS will be on Capitol Hill today to testify, along with Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford, about their fiscal 2018 budgets.
THE WHITE HOUSE did not allow reporters into President Trump’s fundraiser Sunday afternoon for New Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur, a break from standard practice. MacArthur’s spokesman said it raised $800,000, per pooler Todd Gillman of the Dallas Morning News. More from Katie Jennings
TRUMP AND PENCE’S MONDAY -- Trump will be briefed on national security, hold a Cabinet meeting and host the Clemson Tigers football team at the White House to celebrate their football national championship. Pence is joining in the Cabinet meeting and will lunch with the president.
-- PLAYBOOK EXCLUSIVE: MAJORITY FORWARD, a nonprofit affiliated with the Senate Majority PAC, is launching a $500,000, three-week TV and digital ad buy in West Virginia supporting Sen. Joe Manchin. The ad will praise the West Virginia Democrat for standing up for constituents on everything from coal to health care and protecting miners’ benefits. The ad builds off a $4.5 million campaign in Arizona, Indiana, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nevada and WIsconsin that launched on Memorial Day is continuing to run in those states.
-- JUSTICE NEIL GORSUCH is selling his Boulder, Colorado home -- it’s on the market for $1,675,000.
-- SNEAK PEEK: Megyn Kelly previews her interview with conservative radio host Alex Jones to talk about his views, conspiracy theories and controversies. The full interview will air June 18 at 7 p.m. on “Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly.”
WASHINGTON’S OWN ‘DEAR EVAN HANSEN’ WINS 6 TONYS -- WAPO’S PETER MARKS in New York: “‘Dear Evan Hansen’ claimed the top prize -- best musical -- at the 71st Tony Awards on Sunday, a nail-biter of a night that saw it scoop up five other awards, including one for its universally heralded star, Ben Platt. The musical, birthed in the summer of 2015 at Arena Stage, garnered trophies for its book writer, Steven Levenson, and composer-lyricists, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, who earlier this year earned an Oscar for their music in ‘La La Land.’ ‘Dear Evan Hansen’ tells the story of an introverted teenager who, desperate to be accepted, perpetuates a lie about a friendship with a classmate who has taken his own life, a falsehood that earns him Internet fame but ends in disaster.”
-- A NOTE FROM YOUR PLAYBOOKERS: We are especially proud of Ben Platt -- the star of “Dear Evan Hansen” and the winner of best leading actor in a musical. Ben is Jake’s wife Irene’s first cousin. Anna, Jake, Irene and a whole host of D.C.’ers saw “Dear Evan Hansen” at Arena Stage and fell in love with it. Six Tony’s. Not bad.
WELCOME TO WASHINGTON! “Melania Trump, son Barron move into the White House,” by AP’s Darlene Superville: “The first family is together again under the same roof: the White House. After nearly five months of living apart, President Donald Trump’s wife, Melania, announced Sunday that she and the couple’s young son have finally moved into the presidential mansion at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. ... ‘Looking forward to the memories we’ll make in our new home! #Movingday,’ the first lady tweeted Sunday evening after she and Barron arrived at the White House with Trump. The tweet accompanied a photo of the Washington Monument as seen from the White House Red Room.” With an AP pic of the first family getting to the White House -- Barron wore a t-shirt saying “The Expert” … FLOTUS’ tweet
DEEP DIVE – BEN SCHRECKINGER in POLITICO Magazine, “How Russia Targets the U.S. Military: With hacks, pro-Putin trolls and fake news, the Kremlin is ratcheting up its efforts to turn American servicemembers and veterans into a fifth column”: “Experts warn that effort, which has received far less attention, has the potential to hobble the ability of the armed forces to clearly assess Putin’s intentions and effectively counter future Russian aggression. In addition to propaganda designed to influence service members and veterans, Russian state actors are friending service members on Facebook while posing as attractive young women to gather intelligence and targeting the Twitter accounts of Defense Department employees with highly customized ‘phishing’ attacks.”
TOP-ED -- “Why foreign aid is critical to U.S. national security,” by retired Admiral Mike Mullen and retired General Jim Jones in POLITICO Magazine: “This week, we will join 14 other experienced former four-star generals and admirals in submitting testimony to Congress that military power alone cannot prevent radicalization, nor can it, by itself, prevent despair from turning to anger and increasing outbursts of violence and instability. ... Unfortunately, the administration’s budget would cut 32 percent from the budgets of the U.S. Agency for International Development and State Department — including a cut of nearly half to development assistance. This is exactly the wrong decision at a time when development efforts in the world’s poorest and most fragile countries are needed more than ever. In turn, these severe cuts to USAID would only increase the risk to Americans and to our brave military service members. Congress should reject this dangerous path.”
TALKER – This Sunday’s upcoming N.Y. Times Magazine cover story, “The Long, Lonely Road of Chelsea Manning,” by Matthew Shaer: “Her disclosure of classified documents in 2010 ushered in the age of leaks. Now, freed from prison, she talks about why she did it — and the isolation that followed.”
NEW SUSAN GLASSER PODCAST – “The Shove Heard Round the World: Montenegro’s Prime Minister Markovic on joining NATO, Russia and that time Trump pushed him out of the way”: “At least, [Dusko] Markovic told me when we met in Washington the other day, Trump’s boorish action now means the rest of the planet is suddenly familiar with Montenegro, and the unlikely position it now occupies as a Balkan flashpoint between the wavering West it has been so eager to join and a resurgent Russia to its east, angered by the ‘hostile’ course it accuses Montenegro of taking. ‘I have to say that I’m very grateful that this incident, so to say, took place. Because this is what made us so famous,’ Markovic says. ‘This is what made Montenegro so famous.’” … Transcript … Subscribe
2018 WATCH -- “Jared Polis to join crowded 2018 race for governor, tells The Post he wants ‘a Colorado that works for everybody,’” by Denver Post’s Mark K. Matthews: “In an interview with The Denver Post, the fifth-term lawmaker said his platform will focus on three initiatives: getting Colorado to use 100 percent renewable energy by 2040, ensuring parents can access free, full-day preschool or kindergarten for children age 3 and older, and encouraging companies in the state to provide stock options to employees. ... His entry further scrambles a contest that already lacks a clear favorite, and it all but guarantees that the 2018 race to replace Gov. John Hickenlooper will be one Colorado’s wildest elections in years. Polis’ run is notable too, given that the onetime Internet wunderkind can use his sizable fortune to fund his campaign and — if he wins — Polis would make history as the state’s first openly gay governor.”
HMM – WSJ yesterday, “Democrats Look to Cheri Bustos to Map Path to Rural Votes”: ... POLITICO Magazine’s Michael Kruse, May 12, “The Secret Weapon Democrats Don’t Know How to Use: Cheri Bustos of Illinois has lessons about how to win in Trump territory. Are Democratic leaders listening?”
POLITICO’s INAUGURAL “WOMEN RULE” INVESTIGATION: Not only did women not break the glass ceiling in 2016 —they stalled at just 20 percent in Congress, and less than one-quarter of elected offices nation-wide. Even as political activism among women has heated up since the election, there is a persistent gap continues in women’s interest running for office. Over the course of several months, POLITICO conducted over 50 interviews with candidates, elected officials, researchers, wavering candidates and political operatives and found that the swell of female political activism does not translate to future candidacies. To change things, recruiters must start earlier in a woman’s life for her to consider running, school boards are the best starting place, and the sales pitch to get women to run for office must change. Read more
NICE TOUCH -- “Jimmy Carter Shakes Hands With Every Passenger On Flight To Washington,” by HuffPost’s Igor Bobic:
SPOTTED: Former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott yesterday at Pentagon City Mall, toting a Nordstrom bag ... Sen. Minority Leader Chuck Schumer on a plane Sunday afternoon from LaGuardia to Detroit … Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) yesterday at the Beverly Hilton at a wedding … Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) at the W hotel on Thursday night ... at Trump National in Bedminster, NJ yesterday: Shalabh “Shalli” Kumar, industrialist, chair of Republican Hindu Coalition and lobbyist Chase Kroll, foundeCEO of Kroll Global.
SPOTTED at “Not the White House Pride Party” at the Brixton on Saturday organized by Obama White House alumni Gautam Raghavan, Aditi Hardikar, and Monique Dorsainvil to benefit Casa Ruby and SMYAL: 350 guests including Valerie Jarrett; Eric Fanning; former Ambassador Dan Baer; Jim Obergefell; Kate Clinton; Fatima Asghar and Sam Bailey; Tommy Dorfman; Stephanie Rice; Precious Brady-Davi; Mara Keisling; and former Obama White House officials including Brian Bond, Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, Shin Inouye, Lynn Rosenthal, Kyle Lierman, Heather Foster, Alexa Kissinger, Hallie Schneir, Leah Katz-Hernandez, Alissa Ko, and Jonathan Lee. Pic
FOR COREY -- SPOTTED by James Rosen on vacation with his wife Sara Durkin and their sons in Krakow on Sunday: A gift shop right off Market Square (and other gift shops in the Krakow square), were all selling “LEWANDOWSKI” jerseys. Robert Lewandowski is a soccer player for Bayern Munich and captain of the Poland national team. Pic
WEEKEND WEDDINGS -- Sarah Wire of the LA Times married John Bethel on Saturday at Friends Meeting House in Dupont Circle. The intimate ceremony was officiated by her father, Bob, followed by a dinner in the garden. Per the Columbia Tribune: the “groom, a 2002 graduate of Hickman High School in Columbia, works at Mega Kitchens and Baths. The two met through mutual friends at McNally’s Irish Pub in Columbia as Sarah was finishing college in 2010. They lived in Arkansas before moving to Washington D.C. so Wire could cover Congress.” Pic ... Instapic
SPOTTED: a good portion of the women’s Congressional Softball press team including Lynn Sweet of the Chicago Sun-Times, Bridget Bowman of Roll Call, Emmarie Huetteman and Mikayla Bouchard, both of The New York Times. Also attending: Allison Wisk of the LA Times, Amber Phillips of the Washington Post and Suzanne Struglinski of the National Press Club.
-- Jacob Daniels, who was just promoted to be SVP of policy at federal affairs consulting firm SPG and is a former Trump campaign staffer, recently married Stacey Kafka, press secretary for Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-Texas), in a small ceremony in front of close friends and family in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. They met in 2014 when he was a city councilor in Creswell, Oregon, and she was a local ABC affiliate reporter and was interviewing him on a story. He soon asked her out on a date but she told him she doesn’t date politicians. A few weeks later, he resigned from the city council and they started going out. Pic
-- Stephen Morrissey and Elise Aronson, who met as interns at the DSCC in 2011, were married over the weekend in Philadelphia at the Free Library. Guy Cecil, executive director of the DSCC when the two met, presided over the nuptials. Stephen is now an M&A associate at Skadden Arps, and Elise just graduated with an MBA from Wharton. Pics -- cutting the cake … Elise with her bridesmaids
TRANSITIONS -- Alex Booze starts today as an account manager at EPIC PR Group. Booze, who is also a food blogger for East Coast Contessas ( in her free time, was formerly the manager of media relations at the Charles Koch Institute.
BIRTHDAY OF THE DAY: BuzzFeed reporter Alexis Levinson, a National Review alum, is 29. How she’s celebrating: “Dinner with my boyfriend. It’s a Monday, so nothing crazy. My birthday always sneaks up on me somehow — every year I say I’m going to plan and then all of a sudden it’s three days away.” Read her Playbook Plus Q&A:
BIRTHDAYS: Dina Powell (hat tips: Sean Spicer, Autumn Vandehei and Amy Little Thomas) ... Carrie Budoff Brown, editor of Politico and the pride of York, Pa. ... Matt Mowers, senior White House advisor at the State Department (h/t Ryan Williams) ... the only, the only Kevin Sheekey, the man, the myth, the legend, is 51 -- Kevin was in China last week (h/ts Tammy Haddad and Helen Brosnan) ... George H.W. Bush is 93 ... Josh Kushner, founder of Thrive Capital, is 32 ... Rabbi Levi Shemtov, EVP of American Friends of Lubavitch (Chabad), is 57 (h/ts Jewish Insider) ... Marv Albert is 76 ... Dag Vega, managing director for public affairs and crisis at Burson-Marsteller and former special assistant to the President and director of broadcast Media at the Obama WH (h/t Ben Chang) ... Alex Castellanos, co-founder of Purple Strategies … Google’s Courtney Pannell ... Hayley Alexander is 28 … Eli Glazier of urban planning firm Toole Design (h/t Ashley Gold) ... DNC alum Luis Miranda ... AP’s Rachel D’Oro ... Rep. Mark Amodei (R-Nev.) is 59 ... Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Calif.) is 76 ... Eleanor Lewis (h/t Jon Haber) ... Husein Cumber ... Sally Bradshaw ... Casey Ratlief is 32 ... Todd Beyer ... E&E alum Nathanael Massey is 31 ...
... Matt Wolking, press secretary for Sen. Rubio (h/t Olivia Perez-Cubas) … Hanna Siegel, deputy director at New American Economy (h/t Sarah Doolin Roy, who starts today at the American Ballet Theatre, working on brand partnerships and engagement strategy) ... Sean Murphy of Gotham Government Relations and Communications ... Zach Baron, new associate at Boies Schiller & Flexner, celebrating (despite this heat wave) at the Nats game (h/ts Shaina and Sarah) ... Mary Urbina-McCarthy ... social media guru Colleen Shalby, engagement editor at the LA Times ... Eli Zupnick ... Democratic fundraiser Lisa Kurdziel … Melodie McQuade ... Ted Ullyot, partner in policy and regulatory affairs of Andreessen Horowitz and a Facebook, Bush 43 and DOJ alum … Dan Archer, SVP of federal gov’t relations at Wells Fargo … former Energy Secretary Spencer Abraham, now a principal at Blank Rome, is 65 … Patrick Schmitt … Ryan Mannion, CTO for CAR and DRIVER … Alissa Tabirian ... Campbell Curry-Ledbetter, deputy finance director at Joe Kennedy for Congress ... Sam Buchan … Adam Wolf ... Katina Tina Rojas Joy ... William Kresse ... Melodie McQuade ... CFPB alum Victor Zapanta ... Jeani Murray, queen of Iowa City, Iowa ... Peter Schechter ... Jack Wetzberger, pride of Dubuque, Iowa ... Travis Worl ... Jon Green, king of winning Paid Sick Days campaigns ... Kate Vilsack (h/ts Teresa Vilmain)
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2017.05.15 23:56 tellmehow5 Hayley x Chad

First of all, if you're not interested or don't agree with this content, just look away and don't be a part of it. Thanks, no hate please.
I've been listening to After Laughter on loop in the last couple days and I can't help but notice the amount of songs that Hayley wrote about Chad (pool and forgiveness - maybe RCB and TMH too), she may never actually say that it's about him but, it's pretty obvious anyway. I've always been the kind of person who love listening to lyrics of every song so I started to search for things to understand a little but more about those songs, and there isn't one thing that I found out that is actually a good thing, most of the things are pretty sad and upsetting. First thing that I found out was that Hayley and Chad broke up for the first time during the first parahoy, Chad himself talked about it in a radio station, but didn't said the reason of why they broke up, but they end up finding their way back together again and got engaged on Christmas. But here's the most upsetting, they also "broke up" during 2015 while engaged. The reason why, is because Chad cheated on Hayley, and the worst is, with one of HER "friends". No wonder why her depression and anxiety started in this period of time (she talked about it the beats 1 interview). Not only was cheated by her fiancee at the time, but also betrayed by a friend AND ALSO was in a dirty lawsuit started by Jeremy, one of her longest time band mate and best friend - not anymore anyways. There even was some people saying that Chad also cheated while on tour - but we'll never know if it's true. But one thing we can't deny, Chad is a weird guy, even if they """worked things out""" (she still looks pretty much messed up) he sounds really creepy and his actitudes annoys me so much... Go listen to The Sound Of Two Voices (NFG song, Chad wrote the lyrics) he not only exposed the cheating situation, but also pretty much said that Hayley is not enough for him and he need to "lock up his NEEDS",too creepy. Other weird song he also wrote on his solo project - What's Eating Gilbert - is Bad Mood, he literally complain that partner depression and problems annoys and bothers him, it shouldn't be this way, he also has a bad past in his past marriage, it ended cause guess what? He cheated. Anyway, I think that Hayley only put up with that cause it's the only kind of love that she knows I mean, she dated Josh for almost four years and the started dating with Chad and they're together for almost ten years, and also her parents ended up splitting when she was only a child witch gave her the sense that no matter what, she needs to fight and work hard for a relationship. In The Only Exception it's pretty clear this sad concept on love that she has. Anyway, just wanted to share my thoughts on this, I would never let this get to Hayley, that's why I'm talking about it here, I don't thin she read Reddit Lol. You guys can also leave thoughts on the new album, on lyrics, let's discuss about it(;
UPDATE: Ok, People definitely found out who the girl (that Chad cheated Hayley with) is, the only thing I ask is, keep it to yourself. But mostly important thing, have respect, don't go to her social media to say negative things, don't say nothing at all actually, what I wanted was to understand completely the history behind those lyrics, and I (we) did. I also want to appreciate the respect on the comment section, in THIS post, the girl's name wasn't mentioned, and I'd like to keep it that way, cause once again, what I (maybe we) wanted, was to interpret the lyrics. Personally I don't agree with the user who in other post mentioned the girl's name. Just wanted to make that clear.
OTHER EDIT: Well I guess everything was true, they're getting divorced, let's respect their privacy and not talk about all this where they can see please.
submitted by tellmehow5 to Paramore [link] [comments]

2016.07.18 10:18 PacoTaco19 This is the team that got me a Worlds invite! A 47th place US Nationals Team Report

Hello everyone! My name is Ethan, but a lot of you probably know me as PacoTaco. I recently drove 7 hours to Columbus, Ohio from my home in St. Louis, MO with 4 friends to compete in the US Pokemon VG National Championships. Going into the tournament I had 324 CP, meaning I was 26 CP away from 350, the amount needed for an invite to the World Championships this August. Top 128 would've given me the CP I needed, however I managed to go 6-3 in Swiss rounds and get 47th place, earning +132 CP and a Worlds invite! And now I'd like to tell you about the team I used to achieve this feat.
The Inception of an Idea
From the beginning I knew I wanted to use the core of M-Mawile / P-Groudon / Yveltal at Nats. Swiss rounds are best-of-3 at Nats, meaning that you can potentially play up to 27 battles in a single day. Last year, in order to save time, there was no lunch break and I had a feeling the same thing would happen this year. Nine 45 minute rounds of Pokemon is a long day. I knew that as the day wore on and my brain started tiring, that I wanted to use something I was used to so I wouldn't have to think as hard. That is why I knew I wanted to use Y-Don + Mawile. It's the core I was most comfortable with and have used the most this season.
Starting from the building block that is Y-Don + Mawile, the first thing I wanted to do was add more Xerneas hate. As an Yveltal user, one can never have enough Xern hate. This led me to Crobat, which is in my opinion the best non-Mega non-restricted answer to Xerneas (sorry Bronzong).
Next, I wanted to be able to have a reliable answer to Salamence when it's on a Dual Primal team. Mawile is an excellent answer to Mega Salamence, but Mence is often seen on Dual Primal teams and Mawile has a poor matchup against them. This is what led me to Mega Sceptile. Mega Sceptile is fast enough that it can run a Modest nature and outspeed every relevant Pokemon in the format (except Mega Gengar and Crobat, which I wasn't worried about). With Grass Knot and Dragon Pulse Modest Mega Sceptile does big damage to both Primals, as well as Salamence and Rayquaza, all while shutting down Thundurus, Amoonguss and Jumpluff shenanigans. I did a little research on Mega Sceptile and realized that it top cut a European Nationals, and that sold me on the idea.
My team needed a sixth, and I just threw Thundurus onto the team without much thought. Thundurus' Prankster Thunder Wave could proc Mega Sceptile's Lighting Rod, giving it a free +1 boost to Special Attack to shoot off power Grass Knots to OHKO Primal Groudon or Xerneas. This combined with Prankster Taunt to handle Smeargle shenanigans and Thunderbolt to handle Brave Bird (which threatens Sceptile) was enough to sell me on Thundurus, at least at the time.
The International Challenge was coming up so I started laddering with the team. One thing that jumped out to me immediately was how annoying Kangaskhan was for the team. Outside of Crobat, I had nothing to stop my opponent from grabbing the momentum turn 1 with a Fake Out. I didn't like being forced to lead Crobat anytime I saw a Kang in team preview. I considered using my own Kang with Inner Focus as the pre-Mega ability, but Kang v Kang mirror leads are so mind-gamey and I wanted to stay away from that. I considered some faster-than-Kang Fake Out users and stumbled on Infernape.
Let me just say, Infernape is very underrated Pokemon. Its support movepool is MASSIVE. It learns Quick Guard, Fake Out, Feint, Encore, Taunt, Fling and Helping Hand. Those are just off the top of my head, I'm sure it can learn more. And all of that is coming off of Infernape's very fast 108 base Speed. And I haven't even mentioned its 104 mixed attacking stats, Fire + Fighting STAB coverage and access to high power moves like Close Combat and Overheat. I tested Infernape out in the team's sixth slot (instead of Thundurus) and immediately fell in love with it. I had myself a team that I liked, that was fun to use and, more importantly, a team that was climbing the ladder.
Refining a Concept
I took my team of Mawile / Sceptile / Yveltal / Groudon / Crobat / Infernape to the June International Challenge. I started off strong with a record of 13-1 after day one. I peaked at 1708 day 2 and then lost 4 games in a row, dropping to a rating of 1643.
After those 4 consecutive losses I lost faith in Sceptile. As fast as Sceptile is and as much damage as it does to prevalent threats with Grass Knot + Dragon Pulse, Sceptile is OHKO'd by both Primals, Salamence and Rayquaza--the Pokemon it's supposed to check. Considering that Nationals is best-of-3, I didn't feel comfortable using a Pokemon that is that hard to play.
Replacing Sceptile was very easy. I essentially combined the fifth and sixth slots on the team into one Pokemon: Raichu. Raichu, like Infernape, is a fast Fake Out user with access to Encore and Helping Hand, and it has Lighting Rod like Mega Sceptile. It sacrifices powerful Fire/Fighting coverage for Electric coverage. I missed having a solid check to Kangaskhan, but I'll always welcome additional Brave Bird and Kyogre hate.
Once again I found myself in a position where I was looking for a good mon to fill in the team's sixth slot. The Sceptile + Infernape iteration of the team was seriously lacking in Speed control, so I tried out the queen of Speed control herself: Cresselia. I hadn't used Cresselia at all in VGC 2016 and I'm honestly not sure why. After having used Cresselia I would say that she is the best non-Mega non-restricted Pokemon in this format. I'll get into why a little later, but at long last I had my team...
...or so I thought. Nats was less than a week away, but as I laddered with the team something just didn't feel right. One thing that stuck out to me was how often I lead Raichu + Cresselia. Being able to Fake Out + Icy Wind turn 1 was great at grabbing early momentum. Beyond that, however, that lead is very passive. When I lead with those 2, I'm entirely reliant on Yveltal and Groudon for damage, and that always makes me nervous. Therefore, a mere 2 days before I left for Nationals, I switched out Raichu for Kangaskhan. As much as I enjoy having a faster Fake Out user, I just felt like the team appreciated Kang's damage output and bulk more than Raichu's utility.
The Team
And that's what led me to this team. That turned out longer than I had anticipated, but I feel like my thoughts and previous iterations of the team are important to understanding why I used what I did. So, without further adieu, here's the team:
The Team
Groudon @ Red Orb Ability: Drought -> Desolate Land EVs: 4 HP / 244 Atk / 4 Def / 4 SpD / 252 Spe Jolly Nature - Precipice Blades - Fire Punch - Rock Slide - Protect
Primal Groudon is in my opinion the best restricted partner for Yveltal. Its typing has nice synergy with Yveltal as it resists Fairy and is immune to Electric, meaning it's capable of taking on Xerneas, Mawile, Thundurus and Raichu, some of Yveltal's worst enemies. When it comes to Y-Don teams, I think a purely physical or mixed Groudon are best, since Groudon wants Precipice Blades to be able to damage Xerneas after a Geomancy boost. I decided to go physical because Fire Punch does more reliable damage than Eruption and does more damage than spread Precipice Blades if the sun is up. I decided to use Rock Slide for the third attack so Groudon could hit Flying types that resist Fire (like Salamence) or Flying types in the rain. I like Rock Slide more than Rock Tomb or Stone Edge because of the flinch chance and the fact that it's spread.
The EV spread is pretty simple. It's essentially a 252/252/4 spread. Having 244 Attack EVs instead of 252 doesn't change any of the attack calculations, so I just went for 244 in order to have 8 more EVs to buff up Groudon's Defense and Special Defense just a little bit. I went for Jolly max Speed on my Groudon because max Speed Groudon has a better shot at winning a Groudon mirror match as well as defeating opposing Kyogres.
Yveltal @ Black Glasses Ability: Dark Aura Shiny: Yes EVs: 244 HP / 4 Atk / 28 Def / 4 SpD / 228 Spe Jolly Nature - Foul Play - Sucker Punch - Snarl - Protect
Yveltal is my favorite restricted Pokemon to use in this format. With the exception of Xerneas, Mawile and itself, it's capable of dealing big damage to pretty much anything while being super bulky and hard to KO. Thanks to the insane power creep of this format and its ability Dark Aura, Yveltal is capable of dishing out tons of damage with no investment thanks to Foul Play. This allows Yveltal to tech into bulk and speed, which enables it to outspeed a large portion of the meta as well as tank any non super effective hit (as well as some super effective hits). Even without much Attack investment, Sucker Punch still hits pretty hard and is good at picking off/pinning low health targets. Snarl does decent spread damage and increases Yveltal's and its allies' Special bulk even more. Black Glasses was chosen as the item in order to increase Yveltal's damage output without taking any recoil damage (so no Life Orb).
The EV spread is a slighty modified version of this spread. The Speed investment allows Yveltal to outspeed max Speed base 95s (like Kyurem-W and non-Mega Rayquaza) with the remaining EVs thrown into bulk. The original blog post that I linked above has all of the damage calculations for this spread, but basically this Yveltal lives everything except for a LO Raichu Volt Tackle, a non-Intimidated Mega Mawile Play Rough and a Moonblast from Xerneas. I chose to go Jolly with 4 Attack EVs over Timid because I clicked Sucker Punch more often than I did Snarl.
Mawile @ Mawilite Ability: Intimidate Shiny: Yes EVs: 140 HP / 252 Atk / 4 Def / 4 SpD / 108 Spe Adamant Nature - Iron Head - Play Rough - Sucker Punch - Protect
Mega Mawile and Yveltal have such excellent synergy with one another. Mawile threatens Xerneas with Iron Head and opposing Yveltal with Play Rough while intimidating opposing Mawile to weaken Play Roughs. Yveltal's Dark Aura boosts the power of Mawile's Sucker Punches, and Yveltal threatens opposing Groudons with Foul Play. Mawile isn't the easiest Pokemon to use, however. It basically requires some sort of speed control in order to be used effectively, but its power, typing and natural bulk make it worth it. Yveltal really appreciates having a teammate that can OHKO Xerneas, and double Dark Aura Sucker Punch is nothing to scoff at.
The EVs allow Mawile to hit 84 Speed, which is slow enough to underspeed the Primals (in case of Trick Room) but fast enough to outspeed Kang (and, more importantly, Xern) in Tailwind. With the remaining EVs Attack is maximized and the rest dumped into bulk. This Mawile is honestly squishier than I would like (Modest +2 Moonblast can potentially OHKO) but we make sacrifices sometimes. I would rather have a somewhat squishy Mawile that is capable of outspeeding and OHKOing Xerneas than a Mawile that always attacks last.
Crobat @ Lum Berry Ability: Inner Focus EVs: 76 HP / 180 Def / 252 Spe Timid Nature IVs: 0 Atk - Tailwind - Haze - Super Fang - Taunt
Crobat is a weird Pokemon. On the internet (like here on Stunfisk or on Nugget Bridge) it seems like people love to board the Crobat hate train. However, in actual tournaments or on the ladder, I see a lot of Crobat. Its usage stats and reputation conflict with one another. That being said, I'm one of those people that recognize Crobat as the excellent support it is. Between Inner Focus, its Poison typing, fast Taunt, Haze and Lum Berry, Crobat can put its team in a favorable board position against Kang-Smeargle, Kang-Xern and Smeargle-Xern leads. Being able to take away Geomancy and Moody boosts is huge, especially with Yveltal on the team. Taunt is great at preventing a Geomancy or preventing a Trick Room from coming up or preventing a Dark Void, etc. and the fact that Crobat's Taunt isn't blocked by Quick Guard is just icing on the cake. Tailwind is there for speed control. Lastly, when you consider the power of Crobat's teammates like Mega Mawile, Mega Kangaskhan, Yveltal and Primal Groudon, Super Fang cutting the target's HP in half can turn a lot of 2HKOs into OHKOs, which is excellent at shifting momentum back in the team's favor. Lum Berry was chosen as the item in order to not care about Dark Void sleeps or rogue Ice Beam freezes.
The EV spread allows Crobat to survive a Jolly Kangaskhan Double-Edge 96% of the time. EVing Crobat to live that 100% of the time takes too many EVs away from HP. Remember, the biggest reason to use Crobat is to check Xerneas, but with that little Special bulk you risk going down to powerful Fairy moves. Lastly, 0 Attack IVs with a Timid nature (as opposed to Jolly) are there to minimize damage taken from Foul Play.
Cresselia @ Sitrus Berry Ability: Levitate EVs: 196 HP / 124 Def / 4 SpA / 4 SpD / 180 Spe Calm Nature IVs: 0 Atk - Helping Hand - Icy Wind - Trick Room - Skill Swap
Cresselia, the queen of speed control. Talk about a Pokemon with 4 moveslot syndrome. Cresselia's support movepool is so large it's not even funny, and she has the bulk to stay on the field long enough to use them, even in a metagame as offensive as VGC 16. Icy Wind is the primary form of speed control here, as the team is generally fast enough to outspeed targets after a single -1 to opponents' Speed (except Mawile). Helping Hand functions similarly to Crobat's Super Fang: it turns a lot of 2HKOs into OHKOs. Helping Hand's priority is really nice, as it allows Cresselia to get off a support move before a Taunt, or if I think Cresselia is going to be Faked Out, she can go for a Helping Hand before the Fake Out to boost her partner's damage before she flinches. Skill Swap is the best support move in the 2016 format in my opinion. Pokemon like Mega Mawile, Mega Kangaskhan, Mega Salamence, Primal Groudon and Primal Kyogre are very reliant on their abilities in order to function, and being able to take those abilities away is a reliable way to neuter them. Skill Swap also helps my Groudon win against other Primals, as Cresselia can reset the sun against an opposing Kyogre by Skill Swapping Groudon, or give Groudon Levitate to be immune to opposing Groudon's Precipice Blades and/or Earth Power. Lastly, my team is very fast, meaning it is susceptible to Trick Room. My answer to Trick Room? Why, reset Trick Room of course! That's honestly the only reason Trick Room is here. Not that I ever plan to abuse Trick Room myself, but to prevent my opponent from abusing it.
With 180 Speed EVs Cresselia hits 128 Speed. I picked that number in order to Speed creep Pokemon that were Speed creeping a -1 Mega Salamence. The 4 Special Attack EVs are necessary in order to guarantee that 2 Icy Winds and a -1 Rock Slide from Groudon will knock out Mega Salamence 100% of the time. This Cresselia spread ensures that Jolly Kangaskhan's Double-Edge is a 3HKO with Sitrus Berry. The remaining EVs (all 4 of them!) are dumped into Special Defense (as well as a Calm nature) in order to make Cresselia as fat as possible. Adamant Groudon's sun-boosted Fire Punch and Modest Kyogre's rain-boosted Origin Pulse are both low rolls to 2HKO with this spread. Lastly, 0 Attack IVs and a Calm nature to minimize Foul Play damage.
Kangaskhan @ Kangaskhanite Ability: Inner Focus Happiness: 0 EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe Jolly Nature - Fake Out - Frustration - Sucker Punch - Power-Up Punch
What is there to say about Mega Kangaskhan that hasn't already been said? Mega Kangaskhan has dominated VGC for 3 years in a row now, and she's been using the same set to do it! The fact that a Pokemon can be so dominant in 3 different metagames with the SAME SET just speaks volumes to how reliable and how good it is. As for VGC 16, Kangaskhan is fast enough to outspeed every relevant restricted mon except for Mega Rayquaza, hits hard enough to 2HKO everything except for Primal Groudon and Mega Mawile (or Mega Mence if she's Intimidated) and is bulky enough to not be OHKO'd by sun boosted Eruptions, Precipace Blades, rain boosted Water Spouts, +2 Dazzling Gleams, etc. She can abuse Dark Aura with Sucker Punch or just hit hard with STAB Frustration. I elected to go for Power-Up Punch instead of Low Kick because +2 Dark Aura Sucker Punch (this OHKOs opposing Kang!). Kang is so naturally bulky that I prefer Frustration over Double-Edge in order to avoid recoil damage. The drop in power is worth it to me in order to maintain full health if I attack first, or to avoid knocking myself out if I attack second. In a metagame that is as offensive as VGC 16, Fake Out is basically a must on any Pokemon that can learn it since shifting momentum back after you lose because of a Fake Out flinch is so hard to do in VGC 16.
Kangaskhan's EVs are simple: go fast and hit hard!
The Tournament
For the rest of this team report I’ll cover each of my nine Swiss rounds in detail for anyone curious as to how my matches went.
Round 1 vs. Ben Torres His team: Groudon / Aerodactyl / Rayquaza / Talonflame / Zangoose / Liepard
When I saw Ben's team during team preview I was immediately in a good mood. When it comes to the first round at a major tournament like US Nationals, you never know what you're gonna get. You might get a big name player whose name you recognize, or, in my case, a low ladder team. I saw Zangoose and Aerodactyl and figured this would be an easy win to start out the day 1-0. I didn't respect my opponent and it cost me... sort of. I just gotta say that I love best-of-3. Game 1 Ben surprised with Mega Aerodactyl (I incorrectly assumed it was a non-Mega support set) and took the game with fast offence. I was more prepared for games 2 and 3 and adjusted by bringing Mawile, who won the game for me once I managed to KO Ben's Groudon.
2-1 W [1-0 overall]
Round 2 vs. Joshua Henderson His team: Groudon / Weavile / Mawile / Palkia / Cresselia / Thundurus
Once again I was happy when looking at my opponent's team during team preview. Mawile + Yveltal is incredibly strong against this team. This was my game to lose, but I had learned my lesson round 1 that even though I have a strong matchup, disrespecting my opponent is how you lose a winnable game. I went into the match against Joshua determined to win but not overconfident to the point of being cocky. Josh brought fast mode to game 1 by leading Weavile and Thundurus. He managed to take an early lead by OHKOing my Kangaskhan with Superpower from his Life Orb Thundurus. Cresselia proved too much for Joshua, however, as I had the speed in advantage in both games thanks to Icy Wind slowing him down and Trick Room resetting the Trick Room that his own Cresselia set up.
2-0 W [2-0 overall]
Round 3 vs. Zach Droegkamp His team: Thundurus / Yveltal / Kangaskhan / Crobat / Smeargle / Groudon
This round was incredibly exciting and nerve racking at the same time. Zach Droegkamp is a 3-time worlds competitor and 4-time regional champion and knowing that I was a little nervous when I saw his name next to mine on the pairings. That being said, he's also a player I've looked up to for awhile now and I feel like I've gotten better as a player by emulating the detail to which he takes notes (which I picked up on from his 2015 StL Regionals team report). I was excited to have the opportunity to battle him. Not only that, but this match was played in the stream room. I've never been on Pokemon's stream before but I've always wanted to. Even though this round was played in the stream room my battle with Zach was not put on stream. That was disappointing, but it was still a great set that I really enjoyed, despite the fact that Y-Don and Crobat mirrors kinda suck for the most part.
Game 1 I managed to grab the momentum early by predicting a Prankster Taunt onto Crobat and getting a free KO onto Groudon with a Super Fang + Frustration. Zach's Choice Scarf Smeargle brought the game back into his favor. After switching Smeargle back in it transformed into my Groudon, which I managed to KO with my own Groudon once he locked his into Rock Slide.
Game 2 I brought the same Pokemon. I won 3 speed ties but somehow still managed to lose mostly because Zach's physical offensive Life Orb Yveltal did more damage to my bulky Black Glasses Yveltal than mine could do to his.
Game 3 was a perfect mirror as Zach and I lead the same 2 Pokemon with the same 2 in the back. I won a speed tie to grab the momentum early, but missed an important Rock Slide late in the game that allowed Zach's Crobat to set up a Tailwind as my own Tailwind was fading which was what Zach needed to secure a victory.
1-2 L [2-1 overall]
Round 4 vs. Hayley Aldworth Her team: Ferrothorn / Cresselia / Kangaskhan / Thundurus / Groudon / Kyogre
A picture of me that a Pokemon photographer took during this round
Every Y-Don player hopes he sees Dual Primal at team preview. Of all the common team archetypes in the VGC 16 metagame, Y-Don has arguably the best matchup against Dual Primal. Looking at Hayley's team I knew right away which Pokemon I wanted. Cresselia does more than Crobat in the Dual Primal matchup and Mawile is just bad against the Primals in general so I know that I was going to bench Mawile and Crobat for this set.
Game 1 I made the mistake of letting my Kangaskhan get Paralyzed. Hayley took the lead by KOing my slow Kangaskhan and never let it go. I switched up my game plan in games 2 and 3 and Cresselia carried me to victory as she made sure that my Groudon was safe from Hayley's Primals with Skill Swap.
2-1 W [3-1 overall]
Round 5 vs. Jacob Morgan His team: Xerneas / Groudon / Crobat / Clefairy / Thundurus / Kangaskhan
My first Big 6-esque team of the tournament. Crobat + Yveltal can handle the traditional Big 6 pretty well, but the fact that Jacob was using Thundurus made me nervous. I knew that me being able to win this set would come down to playing around Thundurus correctly. Jacob brought Thundurus to game 1, which I KO'd as soon as possible with my Groudon. From there on out, Crobat + Yveltal won me the game. The same was true for game 2, where Jacob elected to leave Thundurus on the bench.
2-0 W [4-1 overall]
Round 6 vs. Mitchell Garlock His team: Mawile / Kyogre / Salamence / Groudon / Gothitelle / Crobat
Typical Double Primal TailRoom team. I knew my key to victory, as it is against most teams with this archetype, was to use Cresselia to put my Groudon in a good position and come in late game with Yveltal. I managed to successfully execute my gameplan both games. Game 2 was particularly memorable as my Cresselia stole Shadow Tag to trap Mitchell's Kyogre in the sun.
2-0 W [5-1 overall]
Round 7 vs. Stefan Smigoc His team: Groudon / Kangaskhan / Gengar / Rayquaza / Suicune / Ferrothorn
This match was played on one of the side TV streams, and the judge said I had to be the one to play on the capture DS. I didn't want to the do this because it meant I couldn't use headphones (I do this every round because it helps me focus, which would be harder to do since there were people less than 10 feet from me watching on the TV) but I had no choice because that's what the judge said.
Game 1 was a close one, but I ultimately lost. I fell behind early thanks to Stefan's Kangaskhan letting loose with +2 Sucker Punches (he went for the Power-Up Punch turn 1) and me letting Groudon shoot off a nearly full-powered Eruption. My win condition this game was to land a double Protect, which I failed. Game 2 I correctly called what Stefan wanted to do turn 1. My counterplay was to Super Fang his Groudon to weaken Eruption. Unfortunately I missed the Super Fang and Groudon picked up the double-KO against me. The next turn he won a speed tie and OHKO'd my Groudon with Earth Power. Yveltal was in a 1v4 at that point, which it ultimately lost.
0-2 L [5-2 overall]
Round 8 vs. Ryan Brooker His team: Groudon / Gothitelle / Kyogre / Salamence / Ferrothorn / Raichu
Another Double Primal TailRoom team with Gothitelle, similar to the team used by Mitchell in round 6. I recognized Ryan; I played him at the 2015 StL Regional as well was the Nugget Bridge Major 4. He beat me both times, however it was close on both occasions. Ryan already has his Worlds invite for 2016 and the pressure was on for me if I wanted to make day 2 so I knew that I needed to be on my game if I wanted to redeem myself against Ryan.
I learned in round 6 against Mitchell how effective Cresselia can be against Gothitelle so I decided to lead with her in game 1 against Ryan, who didn't even bring his Gothitelle ¯_(ツ)_/¯. Turn 1 we traded Fake Outs with Raichu and Kangaskhan. Turn 2 onward, however, Cresselia did what Cresselia does best against Double Primal teams: she ensured I had the speed advantage with Icy Wind and kept my Groudon safe from Ryan's Primals with Skill Swap. As soon as I managed to get Groudon in safely against Ryan's slowed down Salamence it swept the game for me with Cresselia's help.
For game 2 Ryan brought Gothitelle this time around and I immediately had visions of my Shadow Tag Cresselia carrying me to victory against Mitchell in round 6. Once again Cresselia stole Shadow Tag with a Skill Swap as Gothitelle sets up Trick Room. Kangaskhan went for the Fake Out into Salamence but Ryan switched Ferrothorn into that slot resulting in Kangaskhan taking a lot of damage from Iron Barbs. Turn 2 Ryan caught me off guard as he went for the Taunt onto Cresselia with Gothitelle, which meant that I was unable to reset Trick Room. I switched Kangaskhan out for Groudon, which took a little bit of damage from Gyro Ball. Next turn I overpredicted and went for a Fire Punch into Gothitelle assuming that Ferrothorn would Protect; it didn't. Groudon was brought to red health from a Psychic + Power Whip as Cresselia tickled Ryan's Pokemon with Icy Wind. Next turn I stalled out a Trick Room turn with Icy Wind + Protect. I tried to be clever by going to a Precipice Blades next, hoping to knock out Gothitelle as Ferrothorn Protected itself, but I embarrassingly forgot that Gothitelle had Levitate. Groudon eventually KO'd itself on Iron Barbs as it KO'd Ferrothorn. At this point, the damage had been done, since my Cresselia and Kangaskhan were low. Ryan KO'd Cresselia before she could exert anymore speed control and then I lost to Salamence and a bulky Kyogre.
I don't remember much from game 3 except one important detail: Power-Up Punch for the win! Kangaskhan was Paralyzed by Raichu's Nuzzle early in the game, but I managed to catch Kyogre switching in with a free Power-Up Punch. Since Kangaskhan was Paralyzed (and therefore slow) she was forced to Sucker Punch to get damage off on Kyogre before eating a rain-boosted Water move. Fortunately for me a Helping Hand-boosted +2 Sucker Punch OHKOs Kyogre. That turn sealed the game for me. I would be going into the final round at the US National Championships with an X-2 record!
2-1 W [6-2 overall]
Round 9 vs. Rene Alvarenga His team: Xerneas / Kangaskhan / Salamence / Thundurus / Groudon / Smeargle
Rene's was another name I recognized. He's a Mexican player that I had played on Battle Spot a couple times. As far as I could remember I lost to him everytime. Not only had I defeated a team similar to Rene's in round 5 but also redeemed myself against Ryan in round 8, so I was eager to play this round and redeem myself again to secure a spot for myself at day 2 of US Nationals.
Turn 1 of game 1 I was afraid of Thundurus Taunting my Crobat so I went for a Super Fang + Precipice Blades into Rene's Groudon. This did not go well for me because he Thunderbolted Crobat for the KO and switched Groudon out for Salamence. Next turn I decided to Rock Slide with Groudon. Or, at least I wanted to Rock Slide with Groudon. Instead of Rock Sliding, however, Groudon went for a Precipice Blades... when my opponent had two Flying types on the field. I misclicked! It's the final round of US Nationals and if I win I'm in day 2 and I misclicked! That misplay pretty much cost me game 1 as I was too far behind afterwards to salvage any sort of comeback.
I tried my best to compose myself after the disaster that was my misclick game 1. I failed. The pressure got to me and I was off my game and trying too hard to compensate for the terrible game 1 I had. This game wasn't very close and Rene defeated me to secure his spot at day 2 of US Nationals.
0-2 L [6-3 overall]
47th Place! Hello +132 CP! In the immediate aftermath of round 9 I was very disappointed that I misclicked and played poorly in general to lose my shot at day 2. However, I still managed top 64 which earned me enough CP to get a Worlds invite (456 to be exact). Once that really sunk in I felt a lot better. I spent the rest of the weekend in Columbus hanging out with my friends and watching Pokemon/Pokken. It was a lot of fun and for the first time in my life I am going to have a chance to compete at the Pokemon Video Game World Championships!
If you've made it this far I thank you for reading my team report. I hope you enjoyed it. Let me know if you have any questions/feedback for me. Preparation for Worlds is something I've started and I'm open to any suggestions that might help me improve my team!
Before I go I want to give a special shoutout to Team Missouri/Kansas. I was the one who drove the 7+ hours from Missouri to Ohio, but the trip was never boring thanks to my copilots and friends fragor87, avos5, Bright_Size and n10sit. Pokemon tournaments would be much less fun if it weren't for the community and I've had the pleasure of making some great friends along the way, including your friendly neighborhood stunfisk mod broke_stupid_lonely. Broke, it was great seeing you again. I hope I get the opportunity to see you again when I'm in California a month from now.
I also had the pleasure of meeting stunfisk regular Duggler657 while in Ohio. Next time I'm in Ohio for Pokemon mayble we'll have an opportunity to battle one another!
One last shoutout to my friend and honorary member of Team Missouri DaWoblefet. He managed to make it into top 8 and recently did an AMA here on stunfisk, check it out! Thank you Leonard for helping me with EV spreads whenever I need it and for telling me when I have a bad idea when I'm teambuilding with you xD. I look forward to seeing you again at Worlds.
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