The Underground — Issue #118
Everything you need to know about in this weekly series: A new Heineken ad manages to do what Pepsi failed at doing, A new show on Starz that will absolutely dazzle your eyes, The Simpsons take on President Trump’s first 100 days, and an explanation about why and how the Universe is accelerating.
At Social Underground we go beyond the mainstream stuff and see what’s underneath the surface. What should we get into, listen to, read, eat or watch? If there is something in our culture that needs attention that’s our job: Show you the underground things that you need to know about: Books, music, television, movies, comedians, art, and whatever else we can find to get you into something you never knew about. That’s The Underground
1. This Heineken ad did what Pepsi was trying to do. Remember when Pepsi has that strange ad campaign with one of the indistinguishable Jenner girls? You know, the one where she leaves a fashion shoot, throws her wig to a pissed off looking black woman, and then joins a protest about nothing that is actually shown? Then she walks up to a police officer and give him a Pepsi? That one? Yeah. That was a complete disaster.
Heineken made an ad about people with two complete backgrounds solving tasks, not knowing much about each other, and then having two beers put in front of them. It’s then revealed that they’re complete opposites — one believes in climate change, the other doesn’t — and have to choose to talk over their differences over a beer, or simply walk away and say F it. The results are surprisingly refreshing…. LIKE A HEINEKEN!
Though it’s still an advertising campaign designed to get you to buy beer, it manages to have an impact on people who view it. Most people can find common ground when they get to know each other before diving into their differences. It allows two people to be civil instead of yelling over each other.
Watch the thought-provoking ad below.
2. American Gods on Starz is a show you need to set your watch to. In 2006, I was looking for something new to read that had elements of the old Gods with a modern take on them. I know all of it is nonsense, but some great fiction can be made if its done right. I read about a book called American Gods by Neil Gaiman, and I knew that this book would be interesting if anything. I bought the book, read it, loved it, and knew that it would probably be impossible to adapt into a film. Fast forward 11 years.
Starz decided to adapt a television adaptation of it. I was skeptical, but then saw that it was created by Bryan Fuller (Hannibal, Dead Like Me, Pushing Daisies), and directed by David Slade (many Muse videos, 30 Days of Night, Hannibal). I knew it was a match made in heaven once again.
Premise: The series focuses on Shadow Moon, a man serving three years in prison. With only days remaining in his sentence, Shadow is given an unexpected early release after his beloved wife Laura is killed. Shadow finds himself next to a man named Wednesday, who offers Shadow a job. Wednesday appears to be nothing but a con artist who needs Shadow as a bodyguard, but is in fact the god Odin. Wednesday is making his way across America, gathering all the old gods, who have now incorporated themselves into American life, to confront the New Gods, including Media and Technology, who grow stronger.
All the characters on the show are based on old Gods. There is a character called “Shadow Moon.” He is based on the God Baldr. He is from Norse mythology, and a son of the god Odin and the goddess Frigg. I can go on describing the different characters, but reading and watching will make you want to research all of it. It’s part of the fun.
Check out the trailer for the wonderfully written and directed show below. It premieres Sunday, April 30th. Finally, something to watch on Sunday!
3. The Simpsons takes on President Trump’s first 100 days in office. To say that President Trump’s first 100 days in office have been interesting is, well, quite an understatement. It seems that everyday is full of new stories that would take up years of a president’s first term, but Trump drops stories daily. This goes beyond bias because you’d have to be pretty thick-headed not to recognize that everyday is BREAKING NEWS with something that should take down any president… yet it doesn’t.
The Simpsons decided to celebrate Trump’s first 100 days by sh*tting all over him in hilarious fashion. It’s not even that it’s funny, but the subject matter in the clip is a bit too real. Can you picture Ivanka Trump trying to make the Supreme Court robes a bit sexier? Probably. I mean, right now Nordstrom’s is selling jeans with fake mud on them for $425 dollars, so we’re basically living in a nightmare.
I won’t spoil anything else, because this video is full of Easter eggs. Enjoy.
4. How do we know that the Universe is accelerating? There are a lot of big things thrown around in textbooks and on television about the Universe that can confuse people. If you watch Ancient Aliens, you’re probably really confused, and probably really dumb for watching that show unironically. One thing about the Universe that’s discussed about a lot is how it’s accelerating or expanding.
When you think about the Big Bang, you can think of a tiny singularity that explodes and keeps moving outwards over time. When you think of an Atom bomb, you probably think of an Atom being split and then releasing enormous energy. It’s like that in a very simple definition comparison.
The video below explains this a heck of a lot better than I ever could. Maybe get me a few beers, a bonfire, some friends, and I could wax poetic about it, but I’d rather you watch this before you hear me rambling about the Universe.
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Jeff Sorensen is an author, writer and occasional comedian living in Detroit, Michigan. You can look for more of his work on The Huffington Post, UPROXX, BGR and by just looking up his name.