“The only time I ever want to be something is outside a party so I can get in.”—Andy Warhol
Disney’s Merch Game
The creature colloquially known as Baby Yoda is in. So in, we’re afraid, that we can no longer ignore the matter. Though Disney+ had long teased that the first live-action Star Wars show would be centered around a loner bounty hunter, it remained a closely guarded secret that his costar would be the adorable character officially known as the Child. It was both a shock to *Star Wars* diehards (specifics about Yoda’s species was one of George Lucas’s most closely guarded secrets, and we should add that so-called Baby Yoda is not actually the same individual), and a shock to casual fans (mostly with regard to how irresistibly adorable a baby alien could be). Memes of the child have taken the Internet by storm. Someone claimed to have contacted the famed linguist Noam Chomsky about how Baby Yoda might talk (Chomsky’s alleged reply: “Never heard of Baby Yoda, I’m afraid.”). Laura Dern claims she saw Baby Yoda at a basketball game. Fashion fans are trying to figure out who the small green baby’s favorite designer might be (the Row? Rick Owens? Margiela?). Mysteries abound, but perhaps the biggest is how Disney, a reigning champion of capitalism, failed to anticipate this degree of fascination. Merchandise featuring The Mandalorian’s breakout star was not immediately available, and while they’ve rushed out some Zazzle-quality T-shirts, you won’t be able to buy yourself a Baby Yoda doll until after Christmas.
It’s that time of year again, when the cultural elite descends on Miami Beach for the carnival of art, fashion, and design events surrounding the city’s edition of Art Basel Dior Men decided to capitalize on the week, by staging its pre-fall runway show in the city’s Allapattah neighborhood. Stars like Bella Hadid, Kim Kardashian West, and David Beckham came out to view designer Kim Jones’s take on a Blade Runner meets) the subtropics theme. The newly reinvigorated label Bottega Veneta took over South Beach’s famed 11th Street Diner (which sits between a Burger King Whopper Bar and the infamous gay club Twist) for a private party. Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton, meanwhile, preferred to make their presence known at the fairs, with each presenting new collaborations at Design Miami.
The L in LGBT Entertainment
Remember in 2014 when The Lego Movie came out, and, against all preconceived notions, actually became a major critical and commercial smash? Yeah, well, Lego’s German archirival Playmobil decided it wanted some of that box office juice, hence this weekend’s Playmobil: The Movie. A random assortment of celebs, including Anya-Taylor Joy and Meghan Trainor, lent their voices to the animated film, but its theatrical run in Europe earlier this year was a bomb. Of course, if you’re wondering why we’d bother leading with it, that’s because it’s the only wide release of the weekend (though Todd Haynes’s Dark Waters expands nationwide). In limited release, however, there are a few options to choose from, including The Aeronauts (before it winds up on Amazon Prime later this month). Based on a true story, the thoroughly British period piece finds Eddie Redmayne as a meteorologist and Felicity Jones as a hot air balloon pilot in the 1860s as they break world records and make scientific discoveries. It probably won’t wind up getting into the Oscar race, but the reviews have been swell, particularly for its two stars. Elsewhere, In Fabric is a thoroughly stylish horror movie about a haunted red dress. Packed with dark humor and intriguing visual flourishes, this one is aimed squarely at the art house crowd rather than thrill-seekingFriday night teens, like most horror films. After winning the Queer Palm at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year, Portrait of a Lady on Fire makes its way to the States. Set in 18th-century France, it tells the story of a reluctant bride-to-be and the female artist hired to paint her portrait. As the award it received would suggest, the two fall in love (although, given the time period, things don’t end happily ever after).
To balance out the lesbian melancholy, thankfully, there’s a lesbian success story returning to television this Sunday in the form of Showtime’s The L Word: Generation Q. A trio of stars returning from the original groundbreaking series (including, thankfully, Katherine Moennig’s Shane) join a whole new cast of characters to once again navigate sex, love, and life in Los Angeles’s Silver Lake. Meanwhile, Apple TV+ keeps chugging along. On Friday, its second Reece Witherspoon–produced show, Truth Be Told, rolls out. Witherspoon stays behind the camera, with Octavia Spencer starring as a true crime podcast host hung up on investigating the facts behind a headline-grabbing murder case.
The designer Harry Nuriev’s Balenciaga Sofa, stuffed with cast-off clothing provided by the brand, has taken Miami by storm. Even Bella Hadid had to stop by for an impromptu photoshoot.