Is this the best love triangle since Miley-Nick-Selena?
Plus, let’s address Armie Hammer so we can all move on.
Of course, we have to talk about the “driver’s license” Disney love triangle. Sorry! This week, Daysia breaks down the alleged relationship drama between Olivia Rodrigo, Joshua Bassett and Sabrina Carpenter, poses some unanswered questions and compares the controversy to another Disney entanglement— that of Miley Cyrus, Nick Jonas and Selena Gomez.
And the other thing dominating our timeline this week was (unfortunately) Armie Hammer. Basically, every day this week we have learned details about this actor that we really did not ask for. Hannah does her best to recap everything and argues that as a society we have progressed beyond the need to have Armie Hammer trending on Twitter multiple times a week.
Plus, Hannah gushes about her love for Promising Young Woman and Daysia cries over the final installment of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.
This Week’s Fixations
What’s taking up our brain space this week?
Hannah: One of the consequences of 2020 was basically every movie being delayed (except for Tenet, of course) and being denied the experience of overpaying for candy to sit in the dark for two hours. Luckily, I moved back home and the cinema is open here because everyone sacrificed in the beginning of 2020 and my life is basically normal. So I was absolutely thrilled that Promising Young Woman, which I have been wanting to watch since I saw the trailer,was getting a theater release. I tried to manage my expectations because I knew critics were saying the trailer oversold and you ended up watching something different than you expected, which looking back was a fair critique.
However, Promising Young Woman was one of the smartest and most genuine films I have seen in a long time. It wasn’t perfect but you could see exactly what writer/director Emerald Fennell was going for in her feature debut. Plus, it had excellent performances from Carey Mulligan and Bo Burnham and a soundtrack that had me dancing in my chair. The film opens with a remix of the 2017 bop “Boys” by Charli XCX and I feel like that gives a pretty good idea of what you’re getting into. Fennell smartly balances talking about serious issues (sexual assault and society’s treatment of survivors) and making something that is objectively camp. And no spoilers but I haven’t been shaken by the end of a film recently but Promising Young Woman really got me. (So, if that doesn’t make you want to watch it I don’t know what will!)
Daysia: The trailer for the third (and final! 😭) installment of Netflix’s To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before franchise was released on Wednesday. I literally sobbed watching the sequel, so we can only imagine how well I will fare when watching the last of the movies. It appears that our beloved couple Lara Jean and Peter are heading to college, and as most high school sweethearts do, face the possibility of splitting up (we can probably infer how this will go). Noticeably absent from the trailer? Jordan Fisher, who played John Ambrose in the second movie. It makes sense considering how the sequel ended, but I famously stan John Ambrose and wish there was space for him in the last leg of the series! Where is he? What happened to him? I need to know!
Of course, in anticipation of the film’s premiere on Feb. 12, the cast is doing press rounds. Noah Centineo (aka Peter Kavinsky ❤️) was profiled by Lauren Bans for GQ and the photos made me swoon! Plus, Bans noted that he’s a big hugger which is very endearing.It sent me back to the time when he was the White Boy of the Month (all the way back in 2018!) and we were all foaming at the mouth for him. I almost forgot the utter disappointment I felt when I found out that he is not, in fact, actually Peter IRL. It deeply pains me that a man as hot and seemingly sweet as Noah Centineo is as cringey as he is. Alas, we cannot have it all.
Where was their team?
This week’s biggest celebrity PR flops.
Okay before we dive into the Armie Hammer Situation, some quick background: my feelings about Armie Hammer have evolved from indifference to general interest and essentially cycled between these two opinions until recent years. It has always been a source of amusement and frustration that the Cayman Islands, where I’m from, is tied to the Armie Hammer Origin Story since he spent a few years here growing up. And yes, he is currently here right now and I’m choosing not to think about that.
So if you have been fortunate enough to miss it, it seems like Armie has gone rogue and his team is nowhere in sight since he announced his split from his wife Elizabeth Chambers last July. He has always been known for the occasional social media blunder (like the backlash from his tweet in the wake of Stan Lee’s death) but this week has escalated with the reveal of disturbing DMs and most recently the discovery of his alleged finsta. It’s all very distressing and quite frankly exhausting. I’m having a drink for Armie’s PR team because this has got to be one of the worst week’s of their lives and now they can’t even look forward to liaising indirectly with J Lo through her team for Shotgun Wedding promo.
This whole situation makes me want to question the stars because Armie is a Virgo (which I’m still having a hard time wrapping my head around). Maybe he should take some lessons in how to handle his public image from fellow Virgo, Beyonce.
Unhinged Truther Vibes
We’re unpacking celeb rumors, connections, and theories
Is there really drama between Olivia Rodrigo, Joshua Bassett and Sabrina Carpenter?
Every generation has its Disney star love triangle. Millennials had Lindsay Lohan-Aaron Carter-Hilary Duff. Cuspers had Miley Cyrus-Nick Jonas-Selena Gomez. Now, Gen Z has Olivia Rodrigo-Joshua Bassett-Sabrina Carpenter. It’s like clockwork!
If you’ve been living under a rock, the internet has been abuzz with entanglement conspiracies ever since High School Musical: The Musical: The Series star Olivia Rodrigo released her debut single “drivers license” last week. The song is rumored to be about Rodrigo’s co-star Joshua Bassett, with whom she shares an on-screen romance, and his alleged new girlfriend Sabrina Carpenter of Disney’s Girl Meets World. After only a week, “driver’s license” has already annihilated Spotify streaming records and has inspired countless memes. There have been many explainers about the drama, so if you haven’t heard about it, may I recommend this one from Vulture to get you up to speed?
To quickly summarize everything, people think that Bassett and Rodrigo dated and broke up last summer. Bassett and Carpenter have been spending a lot of time together lately, sparking their own dating rumors. None of the people involved have confirmed either relationship. I don’t think that on-screen relationships necessarily have to move off-screen, but hey, these things happen (we saw it with their predecessors Zac and Vanessa!). I do, however, find it strange that we’ve all been hyping up a love triangle between a minor and… two adults? It doesn’t feel right, especially when people are saying that the “blonde girl” in the lyrics who’s “so much older” than the 17-year-old Rodrigo might be 21-year-old Carpenter. Meanwhile, Bassett himself is 20, only a year off from her. So, the idea that he and Rodrigo were dating earlier last year feels wrong, to say the least. Some fans have also guessed that Bassett’s unreleased song “Not Right Now” is about waiting to pursue a crush, possibly Rodrigo. People’s Carly Briet wonders if that means Bassett was waiting for Rodrigo to turn 18 (which if so, is weird and not a great way to start a relationship!).
It’s so common for us to want the romantic leads of a show or movie to be together in real life. It happens all the time with actors who have major chemistry on screen. Oftentimes it does result in a relationship (Emma Stone and Andrew Garfield after Spiderman, K. Stew and R. Patt. after Twilight). Other times it doesn’t (Lana Condor and Noah Centineo after To All the Boys, Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper after A Star is Born). I do not find Rodrigo-Bassett-Carpenter’s Instagram posts to be necessarily damning of anything, but I do believe “driver’s license” is a very real depiction of teenage pain, heartbreak and angst. I think pointing to Bassett as the cause is the obvious answer because it’s already so easy for us to believe fake couples are real. If the alleged story behind the song is true though, I think that comes with its own host of problems about consent and coverage that we have yet to talk about.
I also think this type of story is a recycled trope that we have seen, quite literally, every decade in the new millennium so far. A love triangle between two women and a man is the perfect juicy item to attach to. We love relationship drama and we love to pit young women against each other. It happened with Miley Cyrus, Nick Jonas and Selena Gomez in the late aughts. Back then, we had clearly defined relationships and got the banger “7 Things,'' which spilled all the Niley breakup tea. Miley and Selena’s “feud” was reported on incessantly and dragged on into the mid-2010s— long after either of them dated Nick. It’s perfect gossip fuel, and ultimately a tale that can live on in infamy. As for this new triangle, I’m unconvinced that it’s real. Obviously, relationships have been revealed with far less information, but entanglements like Miley-Nick-Selena (and Lindsay-Aaron-Hilary!) had so much more concrete snarkiness and scandal behind them. But who knows?
If it isn’t real, then the love triangle serves as the perfect catalyst for all of their careers. I do not think that “driver’s license” was released as a PR move (Bassett’s release of “Lie Lie Lie” yesterday, on the other hand, feels like convenient timing even if it isn’t a response to “driver’s license”). However, I do think that the rumors are giving Rodrigo, Bassett and the upcoming season of HSMTMTS a lot of buzz. If the details of the rest of this drama are unclear, this is a fact I am certain of.
Has Lorde dropped a new album?
I really hope Ella takes pity on us and gives us an album that can help us emotionally process this year.
In the meantime, some of the most powerful names in music (Meg and Doja Cat) joined Ari for a remix of “34+35” so at least we have that!
Too Many Tabs
Our fave reads of the week
Back in 2017, Anne Helen Petersen wrote an overview of Armie Hammer’s career and the endless chances he’s been given to be a star for Buzzfeed.