What a Week! Aug. 24-30

We apparently can't get through a week without making poor Harambe roll over in his grave; a lot of things went down at the VMAs; North Korea launched a new Netflix-esque service called Manbang and more.

click to enlarge The legend of Harambe lived on this week, as jackasses across the world continued submitting their generally inappropriate tributes to the Cincinnati Zoo's fallen gorilla.
The legend of Harambe lived on this week, as jackasses across the world continued submitting their generally inappropriate tributes to the Cincinnati Zoo's fallen gorilla.


Since we apparently can’t get through a week without making poor Harambe roll over in his gorilla grave, here we go: Despite the Cincinnati Zoo’s pleas, the world is not done laughing about the ape’s death and legacy. Last week the zoo publicly begged for the end of Harambe memes. Thane Maynard tried to explain that the zoo staff really does miss Harambe so much rn, and the social media storm is making that even more painful. Of course all this did was cause a massive influx of incessant harambassment, leading to @CincinnatiZoo deleting its Twitter account… much like it deleted Harambe. (Sorry…)


Sisqo spoke to Huffington Post this week to talk “Thong Song” 16 years later, for those who are completely immune to context clues. Sisqo appears to represent a tiny crevice of millennium nostalgia that we actually do want to forget: the silver spray-on hair, visible t-strings and male facial piercings. Sure, thongs are still around, but they’re more of just a minimal undergarment these days than a scandalous fashion accessory. “Nobody had seen a whole lot of thongs back then,” he explained. “It was one of those things, like, ‘gather ’round and I’ll tell you a tale.’ I was the guy with the torch by the fire.” Why am I picturing a caveman-era Sisqo showing his fellow hunter-gatherers the very first g-string loin cloth? And why was this not the concept for the video instead of a gravity-defying beach party? Anyway, he said if he were to write a tribute to ladies’ clothing today, he’d sing about yoga pants. Would love a full visual album exploring this. Lululemonade, anyone?


Back in June the First Family visited Yosemite National Park and made a video to commemorate the National Parks Service’s 100th birthday. A video from the visit was released as a 360-degree VR experience, which Obama got to experience with his very own VR headset in a dorky moment immortalized for all to see on social media. Photoshoppers of the internet squealed in excitement for this gift from the Prez while park rangers everywhere shed a single tear due to the fact that people would rather experience a park virtually than actually have to visit one.


Clinton Foundation emails revealed Bono donated to the organization and wanted some kind of arrangement for U2 concerts to stream to the International Space Station. Let’s just say no one ever followed up on that one. Clinton & Co. know the “gift” of the free U2 album had already automatically appeared on all iPhones a couple years ago, pretty much ensuring that Bono will live on for all eternity on Earth. Let’s spare the rest of the universe.


The VMAs are a 32-year MTV tradition where great moments in pop culture history are made. But the spontaneous surprises from past shows are far from MTV’s current attempt at manufacturing watercooler moments. MTV’s promotion for the VMAs is nothing short of IRL clickbait. But of course we clicked, we watched and we felt feelings. Here’s what went down: Kanye had a much-publicized four minutes to do whatever he wanted at the show, which translated to seven minutes of him grasping at some semblance of a message plus time to show his equally confusing new video. For a second it seemed like he was going to comment on the country’s rampant gun violence, but then he just talked about Kim K and debuted a new, extra asstastic video for “Faded” — both of which were covered in baby oil for some reason. It was like watching a cat try to catch a laser pointer, only with “Bro” shouted repeatedly. Didn’t you hear, Ye? Beyoncé is here to deliver powerful social commentary, a 16-minute life-giving performance and so much ass (seriously, at one point she actually sang out her ass) — you really didn’t need to try! Britney returned to the VMA stage for the first time since her trainwreck 2007 performance, and it was really unfortunate that she had to follow Queen Bey because the two stars are just on completely different planets. Bey invents a new dance move that opens your third eye; Britney, well, we just want her to show up, look cute, know her dance moves and have life behind her eyes. In that vein, her performance was a success, despite the confusing presence of a skinny white dude (G-Eazy? Real person or?) who tried really hard to plant a kiss her — which Brit awkwardly dodged — during their otherwise sexish performance. Video Vanguard honoree Rihanna opened and closed the shows, performing an additional two times in between. Kind of weird to give a 28-year-old a sort of lifetime achievement award, but OK. Drake, after missing his own award for Best Hip Hop because he was “stuck in traffic” (searches Urban Dictionary for “stuck in traffic”; finds nothing), came onstage at the end of the night to present her with the major moonman. He professed his adoration for her — people thought he was about to propose — and when he finally handed it over he swooped in for a kiss only to get denied — the second smooch swerve of the night! It was a lesson in badass bitchery and friend-zoning all in one. Thank you, Rihanna.


WCPO’s exposé on banned Ohio vanity plates seemed exciting enough, if not a laborious process: Sign into your Insider account, scroll past a disclaimer warning of offensive and vulgar language and click links to view a video slideshow of rejected plates in North America (DUNG, VAGINA and IFRACK, to name a few) and a downloadable compiled list of yawn-worthy rejected special plates. The only rejected personalized plates WCPO apparently felt comfortable sharing in the story were 5MRTA55, POOPIES, FUBAR 50 and COCAINE. What a bunch of PU551E5.


North Korea launched a new service called Manbang this week. It means “everything” in Korean, as in, “That manbang was everything.” It’s actually the name of a Netflix-style streaming platform and not an off-brand Grindr. Netflix even got in on the fun, changing the company’s Twitter bio to “Manbang knockoff.” Obviously Kim Jong Un invented Manbang 37 years ago and we’re just now getting word. Of course, viewing options are limited and it’s only available in North Korea, so just don’t even try to Google it, unless you’re into mans banging, which is totally fine.

CONTACT T.C. BRITTON: [email protected]

Scroll to read more Opinion articles
Join the CityBeat Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state.
Help us keep this coverage going with a one-time donation or an ongoing membership pledge.


Join CityBeat Newsletters

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.