Back in November, we recorded a live edition of Hard NOC Life from the NOC Reading Lounge at CTRL+ALT — the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s pop-up culture lab in the former Pear River Mart location in SoHo. Hamilton superfans Constance Gibbs, Kendra James, and Kevin T. Morales joined Keith to nerd out over the smash Broadway hit musical Hamilton.
When it’s all said and done, 2016 will be long remembered as the year everything (including American democracy) went to hell. Pop culture did not go unscathed either. We said goodbye to all of our heroes: Prince, Bowie, Ali, Phife, Kanye… and hello to the worst the internet could offer. From misogynist Ghostbusters haters to problematic faves, it was the year the ugly side of internet culture went mainstream. I mean, we literally elected an internet troll the leader of the free world.
Still, the geekosystem was able to produce a few silver linings in the massive dark cloud that was the last 12 months. Here are ten… or so.
by Timothy Yu
Mike Pence went to see Hamilton. He got booed. The actors read a statement from the stage. And our president-elect tweeted a demand that the cast apologize for their “harassment.” Just another day in the dawning Trump Era.
There was plenty to say. Some pointed out the irony of Donald Trump, scourge of political correctness, complaining that the theater should be a “safe place.” Others pointed to the chilling precedent of our incoming president demanding that artists apologize to an elected official. But what most surprised me was seeing some of my friends — many of whom are themselves artists, writers, literary scholars — repeating the argument that the Hamilton controversy was “just a distraction” from Trump’s other problems.
If you missed out on George Takei’s Allegiance during its acclaimed, but brief, Broadway run, Fathom Events is giving you an opportunity to see the musical — that made Hamilton’s Lin-Manuel Miranda sob — in a cinema near you!
It’s happening. After non-stop begging for the last year and a half, the producers of The CW’s block of superhero shows have relented and are giving us a musical crossover between Supergirl and The Flash (with potential guest appearances by Arrow and Legends of Tomorrow cast members). You’re welcome, world.
If you follow this site, you know there aren’t many things we obsess over more than The CW’s DC Universe and Hamilton. And since most of the original cast of the Broadway phenomenon has moved on — or is about to move on [sadface] — I figured why not mash up our favorite things and imagine which DC characters the Hamilton cast could play in the Berlanti-verse? We all know how much they love casting Broadway talent on these shows in the first place. Besides, Lin himself has said we should expect these guys on our favorite shows anyway:
Over the weekend, the Broadway musical, Hamilton, won 11 Tony Awards including Best Musical.
Remember the news story about the lawyer who pointed out that Hamilton’s audition notice discriminated against Caucasian actors?
The lawyer, Randolph M. McLaughlin, inadvertently caused a firestorm of social media ire by lovers of the popular (and expensive) musical. I contacted Randolph to hear his side of the story.
For this week’s edition of Hard NOC Life, we’re changing it up and focusing our attention on a genre that doesn’t get much attention on the site: musical theater! At a time when Hollywood still thinks it’s risky business to put people of color in their movies, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton is literally poppin’ a squat on conventional wisdom, like it or not. With its company of African American, Latinx, and Asian American actors playing the men (and women) who founded our country, Hamilton is proof that diversity equals box office. Joining Keith to talk all things Ham, are super-fan Constance Gibbs, Hollywood Reporter Rebecca Sun, and #OscarsSoWhite creator April Reign.
This week’s episode of Arrow was really great — it’s probably the first time ever that I’ve enjoyed Arrow more than The Flash since 1.) Last season of Arrow was ROUGH, and 2.) This week’s episode of The Flash was also rough. Of course, the amazingness of “Beyond Redemption” was helmed by none other than Punisher: War Zone (and friend of the NOC — go check out Keith’s interview with her!) director Lexi Alexander.