Tag Archives: History

Netflix’s Baby — Teenage Prostitution Drama


Image result for Christmas TV Shows

Image result for Christmas TV Shows

Christmas is in less than two weeks and I have been brushing up on the latest holiday specials on television.  Now is the time to re-watch all of those series that we keep shelved for the month of December.  But even with the Christmas specials rolling out on television, I still make time for the latest Netflix series.

Image result for Netflix

Netflix has been launching its own Christmas series and movies for their digital library.  Hidden within the digital library lies a popular TV series about that centers around two wealth teens in the underworld of Rome.  This is Baby.

Image result for Netflix Baby

Image result for Netflix Baby

Baby revolves around teen friends Chiara and Ludovica in the posh city of Parioli, Rome.  They plunge into an exciting, yet dangerous world of teenage prostitution.  Throughout the series, Ludovica and Chiara start leading double lives as prostitutes to earn money for their own personal obligations.

Image result for Netflix Baby

Image result for Netflix Baby

After the release of the series, Baby gained nationwide controversy for its portrayal of teenage prostitution.  The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) even condemned the series for promoting sex trafficking.  What made things more interesting was that fifty-five sex-trafficking victims joined the organization to send a letter to Netflix about their concerns on the show.  Even with all of the backlash, Baby still remains in Netflix’s digital library today.

Image result for Netflix Baby

Image result for Netflix Baby

But what’s even more disturbing about Baby is the true story behind the series.  Baby is loosely based on a real prostitution scandal that occurred at Parioli, Rome in 2014.  Two Roman high schoolers, under the pseudonyms Lalla and Jenny, went into prostitution after googling “easy money”.  They found their two pimps — Nunzio Pizzacalla and Mirko Ienia.  The girls were fourteen and sixteen at the time the news was published.  Even more disturbing is that the 14-year-old’s mother allegedly told her daughter to get into prostitution to help pay the bills.

Image result for Netflix Baby

A shocking teenage drama that is loosely based on a disturbing case that happened four years ago.  Prostitution is considered legal in Italy, but underage or organized prostitution is against the law.

Image result for Netflix Baby

With that, Baby was definitely an interesting teenage drama to check out.  Its background story is much more provocative than the actual content of the series.  The series bears similar reference to Elite, but it revolves around its story around teenage prostitution.

Image result for Netflix Baby

If you’re looking for another creepy foreign high school drama series, Baby is worth binge-watching on Netflix.  Just remember to let it sink in that it was based on a REAL teenage prostitution case that happened four years ago.

 

Advertisements

AHS Apocalypse Returns to Murder House


Image result for american horror story apocalypse

Happy Monday, fellow readers!  We are in the middle of October starting this week with the most important topic of all – the ULTIMATE crossover event that happened during the last episode of American Horror Story: Apocalypse.  This crossover episode was so memorable and answered many answered questions from the past seasons.

Image result for american horror story Murder House

What makes this crossover event so memorable?  The latest episode took us back into…. the Murder House.  That’s right – THE Murder House, where this whole horrific adventure began.  Seven seasons later and we return to the Murder House where we reunite with some memorable characters.

Image result for american horror story Apocalypse Behold and Madison

Image result for american horror story Apocalypse Behold and Madison

Well, its time to get this crossover event started – Madison Montgomery and Behold Chablis pose as a married couple who wants to purchase the Murder House (for the record, Roberts and Porter would make for a perfect odd couple in their own spin-off series!).  They take over the house to start their investigation about Michael Langdon.  Once they arrive at the house, they sense the paranormal activity happening when they found out that thirty-six people died within the property.

Image result for american horror story Apocalypse Ben and Tate

In the living room, the ghosts of Evan Tate and Dr. Ben Harmon are discussing Tate’s frustration of being ignored by Violet.  Madison and Behold interrupt their session, remarking that they are looking for answers about Michael Langdon.  Beauregard Langdon attacks Madison, but is subdued by Billie Jean.  At the same time, we get a special reappearance by none other than Constance Langdon, the true owner of the house.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Constance

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Constance

You heard me right – Jessica Lange returned!  Four seasons later and Lange returned to her role as Constance Langdon.  This was one of the memorable events of the episode.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Constance

Constance would be able to share information about Michael Langdon, only if Madison and Behold move the maid’s (Moira O’Hara) bones out of the Murder House.  And so, they move her bones next to her mother’s grave.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse The Maid

With the task completed, Constance discusses what has happened since Michael was born.  We ended season one with Constance discovering that Michael Langdon killed his nanny at the age of three.  But it was then that we learned that there was MUCH more to this disturbing tale.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Constance

At one point, Constance discovers that Michael Langdon had aged ten years overnight and appeared as a teenager.  After almost being strangled in her sleep, she consults a priest for help (who ended up being killed by Michael).  Constance returns to the Murder House where she overdoses on pills.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Ben Harmon

Madison and Behold then interview Ben Harmon about Michael.  Harmon explains that Michael went to him for therapy sessions after discovering that Constance killed herself earlier.  Over time, the two developed a father-and-son relationship.  Michael grew more dark over time after being rejected by Tate.  Not only did Ben witness Michael mutilating the ghost of Elizabeth Short, but he also murdered two residents (even going as far as expelling their spirits from existence!).  It was then that Ben ended his therapy sessions with Michael.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Vivien Harmon

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Antichrist

Now we move onto the final character – Vivien Harmon.  Vivien explained that a group of Satanists arrived at the house; the group consisted of Church of Satanists founder Anton LaVey, Miriam Mead, and another cardinal.  Michael consumes a girl’s heart for the Black Mass ceremony.  A demonic shadow appeared and Michael announced that he is one with his “Father”.  She explains that Michael is not a warlock, but is actually the Antichrist.

Here’s where things get crazy – Ben was not the father, Tate wasn’t even the father; Michael Langdon was conceived by the evil within the Murder House.  Tate Langdon was simply a mere vessel controlled by the darkness within.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse Rubber Man

Remember when the Rubber Man returned back in episode two?  That shocking fact may explain how the Rubber Man came back.  Who knows, there may be another answer hidden within another episode in the future.

Image result for american horror story apocalypse

And that ends the AHS event of the century.  We returned back to the Murder House to find out clues for the future episodes.  Who knows what other characters will be returning this week.  Either way, MakeSandcastlesNotWar will be here with full coverage.

Reading Series #4 – Faggots


Image result for Reading

Good news for today – even though the summer is still over, I will continue the Summer Reading series for MakeSandcastlesNotWar.  Instead of ‘Summer Reading’ it will just be a regular literature series.  I’ve been picking up some real interesting novels these days and its about time I showcase some writing pieces that are just pure GOLD.

20180708_131245[1]

20180902_115855[1]

20180618_114232[1]

One was a Gothic horror story taking place in an old haunted house (Haunting of Hill House), another featured philosophical rules like setting your house in order (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos), and then there was the play that featured angels around New York City (Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes).  Our next featured novel takes place within the highly visible gay community in New York City.  It’s a gritty tale of gay sex, drugs, and one man’s quest for a long-term relationship with a partner.  This is Larry Kramer’s Faggots.

Image result for Larry Kramer Faggots

20181009_175033[1]

20181009_173647[1]

Faggots revolves around Fred Lemish, a fit man in his late 30s who is searching for true love.  He wishes to find his soul mate before he reaches forty.  Within the beginning, Lemish works with Abe Bronstein.  Bronstein is a millionaire cake-mix manufacturer who works on a gay film with Fred.  Throughout the novel, Abe and Fred wander through many aspects of the gay subculture in New York.

Over sixty names were mentioned in Faggots, but there were a few who were fully fleshed-out characters.  The principle actors include:

  • Anthony Montano
  • Dinky Adams
  • Richard “Boo Boo” Bronstein
  • Abe Bronstein
  • Patty
  • Maxine
  • Laverne
  • Wyatt Bronstein
  • Ephra Bronstein
  • Irving Slough
  • Hans Zoroaster
  • Duncan “Winnie” Heinz
  • Randy Dildough
  • Timmy Purvis
  • Miss Yootha Truth
  • Blaze Sorority
  • Garfield Toye
  • Troy Mommser
  • Dordogna del Dongo

All of these characters enter into Fred’s life one way or another.  Whether it be lover or regular acquaintance, you learn about a new character each time.

20181009_173754[1]

To start off, this novel is loaded with graphic sexual content.  Much of the setting takes place in gay bars, nightclubs, bathhouses, and even in Fire Island (which is a real LGBTQ hot spot in NY).  The sexual euphoria never stops in this “fast lane” lifestyle during the 1970s.  It was quite an intriguing lifestyle that was fueled by sex and drugs.

20181009_174149[1]

Speaking of drugs, almost every kind of drug is showcased during the story.  Cannabis makes up a small tip of the iceberg of various drug uses.  Some of the various party drugs featured include Quaaludes, poppers, LSD, Valium, PCP, heroin, cocaine, and many others.

Image result for Larry Kramer Faggots

But in the midst of all of the cruising happening throughout, there’s still an underlying innocence the characters have.  Each character had one common goal – the perfect lifetime partner.  Fred, Dinky, Randy, Tim, Irving, Richard, and the others were all searching for their true soulmate.  It’s that common goal in Faggots that sheds a decent light in the world.

This is not your ordinary gay novel, for Faggots takes readers into the world of a sexually liberal gay subculture in 1970s New York City.  There was sex, there were drugs (many drugs!), and there was also the quest for true love.

Image result for Larry Kramer Faggots

If you want to read a great American gay novel, check out Larry Kramer’s Faggots.

Hill/Stone TV/Movie Criss-Cross


Image result for Netflix The Good Cop

Image result for american horror story apocalypse

There’s been a lot of intriguing events happening on television these days.  Monk creator Andy Breckman released The Good Cop on Netflix and American Horror Story: Apocalypse has been full of entertaining surprises.  Another Netflix series, Maniac, also came with its own criss-cross of its own.

Image result for Netflix Maniac

For the record, this isn’t just any ordinary TV criss-cross.  Maniac just happens to come with a special criss-cross like no other.  Ladies and gentlemen – its time to introduce the very first… TV/Movie Criss-Cross.

The TV/Movie Criss-Cross – a criss-cross mixing elements of a TV series and movie together.  Criss-crosses usually come from TV series, but today’s instant stems from both TV and movie.  It’s an unusual event where big screen and silver screen collide under one form of media.

Image result for Netflix Maniac

Image result for Superbad

Image result for Superbad Seth and Jules

Here is the first TV/Movie criss-cross – Maniac stars Jonah Hill as Owen Milgrim and Emma Stone as Annie Landsberg.  Eleven years ago, Hill and Stone both starred in the movie Superbad.  Jonah Hill starred as Seth, a high school senior who was looking to get with Jules (Emma Stone) at her party.  Hilarious shenanigans ensue as Seth travels with best friends Evan (Michael Cera) and Fogel (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) to Jules’ party.

Image result for Superbad Seth and Jules

Image result for Maniac

Flash-forward eleven years later andwe have both actors starring in Maniac.  Stone and Hill’s characters make for a terrific love story during the series.  This is the kind of romance that carries on over a decade after Superbad was released.  In a way, Maniac presents their story in a more sophisticated way.

Image result for Superbad Seth and Jules

Image result for Maniac

Their characters found love in Superbad and now that romance story lingers on in Maniac.  This is the unique TV/Movie criss-cross that will live on for years to come.  There is no telling what actors/actresses will appear together in the next TV series or movie.

Image result for Superbad Seth and Jules

Image result for Netflix Maniac

And there you have it – the first TV/Movie criss-cross of MakeSandcastlesNotWar.  Jonah Hill and Emma Stone had great starring roles in both Superbad and Maniac.  There is sure to be other unique criss-crosses where different medias mix with each other.  Silver screens mixing in with big screens and vice-versa.  It surely has been a while since a criss-cross has been mentioned within the blog, so this was a perfect instance to discuss.