Saturday Open Thread

I hope that you are enjoying this weekend with family and friends.

I want to put a plug in for a series that will premiere on Monday, May 29th, on ABC.

A new production from Shondaland.


STILL STAR-CROSSED – ABC’s “Still Star-Crossed” stars Dan Hildebrand as Friar Lawrence, Torrance Coombs as Count Paris, Grant Bowler as Lord Montague, Medalion Rahini as Princess Isabella, Sterling Sulieman as Prince Escalus, Lashana Lynch as Rosaline Capulet, Wade Briggs as Benvolio Montague, Anthony Head as Lord Capulet, Zuleikha Robinson as Lady Capulet, Ebonee Noel as Livia Capulet and Susan Wooldridge as Nurse. (ABC/Bob D’Amico)

A Bunch of New Cast Photos from ABC’s Upcoming ‘Still Star-Crossed’
May 12th 2017

STILL STAR-CROSSED – ABC’s “Still Star-Crossed” stars Dan Hildebrand as Friar Lawrence, Torrance Coombs as Count Paris, Grant Bowler as Lord Montague, Medalion Rahini as Princess Isabella, Sterling Sulieman as Prince Escalus, Lashana Lynch as Rosaline Capulet, Wade Briggs as Benvolio Montague, Anthony Head as Lord Capulet, Zuleikha Robinson as Lady Capulet, Ebonee Noel as Livia Capulet and Susan Wooldridge as Nurse. (ABC/Bob D’Amico)

ABC’s much-anticipated post-“Romeo & Juliet” TV series from Shonda Rhimes’ Shondaland, titled “Still Star-Crossed,” which stars British actress Lashana Lynch, is finally set to premiere on Monday, May 29, airing from 10:01-11:00 p.m.

Written by Heather Mitchell, and based on the book by Melinda Taub, “Still Star-Crossed” is set in 16th century Verona, picking up where Shakespeare’s original work ended. It chronicles the treachery, palace intrigue and ill-fated romances of the Montagues and Capulets in the wake of the young lovers’ tragic fate.

The story centers on Rosaline (Lashana Lynch), described as a beautiful, intelligent and headstrong Capulet and Juliet’s cousin. Following the death of her parents, Rosaline is taken in by her aunt and uncle, Juliet’s parents Lady and Lord Capulet, and forced to work as a servant. She does her best to tolerate her aunt’s cruelty, and focuses on finding a way to free herself of the humiliation. She is eventually ordered to marry Benvolio (male lead Wade Briggs), a Montague.

The diverse cast also includes (in terms of actors of African descent) Lucien Laviscount, Sterling Sulieman, and Ebonee Noel.

Prepping for the new series’ in less than 3 weeks, ABC has released a set of new cast photos from the series which are embedded above and below, followed by the most recent promo:

From Black Girl Nerds:

5 Things Everyone Will Talk About in ABC’s Still-Star Crossed
By Jamie Broadnax –
May 15, 2017

Shondaland TV has done it again with changing the game in how we see diversity on the small screen in her latest project Still-Star Crossed. The story of this new innovative take on William Shakespeare’s classic play Romeo and Juliet begin after the tragic deaths of Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet. Sharing bits and pieces of what happens in Shakespeare’s play shouldn’t be a spoiler since we all know how the story of Romeo and Juliet went down.

Rosaline Capulet played by the alluring English actress Lashana Lynch is our protagonist in this dramatic tale, and she is betrothed against her will to Benvolio Montague by Prince Escalus. The Prince wishes to end the bad blood between the Montagues and the Capulets. However, this arranged union is what leads to a series of events that begins to tell the tale of the stories of these characters in the new ABC drama Still-Star Crossed.

After viewing the pilot episode, I want to share five things everyone will be talking about when the pilot debuts May 29th.

A Black Woman Is Our Heroine

Our hero and lead protagonist of this story, Rosaline Capulet sets the tone and is the launchpad for this story. The TV series is based on a book of the same name by author Melinda Taub. We’re grateful to Shonda Rhimes for making Rosaline a beautiful dark skinned character played none other than by actress Lashana Lynch who is just divine! If you remember in the Shakespeare story, Rosaline is Lord Capulet’s niece, Romeo’s first love at the beginning of the play. However, when Romeo meets Juliet, his world dramatically changes, and he falls in love. In Still-Star Crossed, we see the story from her perspective as she is entangled within many story arcs including Romeo’s, Benvolio’s, Lord Capulet’s, the Montagues, and Prince Escalus.

STILL STAR-CROSSED – ABC’s “Still Star-Crossed” stars Lashana Lynch as Rosaline Capulet. (ABC/Bob D’Amico)

The Diversity

Black leads are nothing new to Shondaland, but in a period drama, it is kind of a big deal. This Shakespearean tale has so many characters of color, and it’s beautiful to see so much diversity in this episode. Don’t be alarmed either when you see siblings, parents and all kinds of relatives are from different ethnic backgrounds! If you were a fan of the universe in the made-for-TV movie musical Cinderella starring Brandy, Whitney Houston, and Bernadette Peters; then you will love and appreciate the racebending and mixing in this new narrative.

STILL STAR-CROSSED – ABC’s “Still Star-Crossed” stars Sterling Sulieman as Prince Escalus. (ABC/Bob D’Amico)

Black Love In A Shakespeare Story

I was wondering and hoping that in this period drama with so many characters of different ethnic backgrounds, that if somehow we will get to see some Black love on prime time TV. I wasn’t disappointed since it is a major plot point, I won’t drop the spoiler here, but there is finally some Black love happening here that I was so thrilled to watch unfold on my screen. Black love in Shakespeare on my TV. I’m so glad I’m around to see this finally!

STILL STAR-CROSSED – ABC’s “Still Star-Crossed” stars Wade Briggs as Benvolio Montague. (ABC/Bob D’Amico)

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49 Responses to Saturday Open Thread

  1. Liza says:

    RIP, Greg Allman. His band originated in Jacksonville, Florida, my hometown.

    • majiir says:

      I was in my Freshman year in college when Watergate started taking off. One yuuge difference between Nixon and Trump is that the former was very smart. After Watergate, Nixon was able to repair some of the damage to his reputation by assisting his future presidential successors in their foreign policy efforts. If Trump has to leave office before his term is over, no future POTUS in the GOP will be calling on him to do sh*t because he doesn’t know sh*t about sh*t.

    • majiir says:

      McMaster damaged his career when he lied and said that Jared Kushner “doesn’t recall” having those conversations with Kislyak about setting up a secret communications channel between the U. S. and the Kremlin using the Russian Embassy’s equipment in D.C., and when he claimed that the alleged purpose of the channel was to talk about Syria. He could have kept these lies because I suspect there are many like myself who can make the connection between JK leaving that information off of the forms he submitted to get his security clearance and the secret communications channel. JK left it off because he knew what he’d done and wanted to conceal it.

      • Liza says:

        Yeah, I was thinking about all these people lying for Trump and Kushner. You can almost see how this happens. Trump has presidential powers, so these lame “advisors” and associates and appointees of his may think that he can make all of this go away. So they only have to lie a couple of times and then it blows over, the press moves on. Kushner wanted Comey fired and it really appears that Donald thought that would be the end of the FBI investigation. And we know why Jeff Bull Connor Sessions was appointed AG but, unfortunately for Trump, had to recuse himself from the Russia investigations.

        All of these people in Trump’s mess thought that he could make it go away. They are learning otherwise, of course, but I think that’s the reason behind why it looks like some people are sacrificing themselves for Trump. They didn’t think it could get this far, and they surely didn’t expect to be flagged as part of the conspiracy and/or the cover up.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Michael Hayden, the former director of the NSA and the CIA, told CNN on Saturday that the reported content of Jared Kushner’s conversations with Russia’s ambassador in December may have motivated former national security adviser Susan Rice to request his name to be unmasked in intelligence reports.

    Most of the controversy surrounding Rice’s reported attempts to “unmask” Trump officials has centered on former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s communications with Russian officials.

    But Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and a top White House adviser, floated the possibility of setting up a secure line of communication between the Trump transition team and Russia when he met with Russian ambassador Sergey Kislyak late last year, The Washington Post reported Friday.

    Those talks would take place in Russian diplomatic facilities in the US, the Post said, creating a secure line that would essentially conceal the administration’s interactions with Russian officials from US government scrutiny.

  3. rikyrah says:

    Why Did Kushner Seek A Private Channel with Moscow?

    The conceivable explanations range from bad to worse.

    by David Atkins
    May 27, 2017 2:04 AM

    Things are looking very bad for Jared Kushner, and by extension the entire Trump presidency. Just days after it was discovered that Kushner is a top target of the FBI due to possible financial crimes and ties to Russia, came yesterday’s explosive revelation that the President’s son-in-law requested a secret, secure channel to the Kremlin during the transition period. This request was so extraordinary alarmed even the Russians, as it would have entailed giving an American access to communications equipment specifically designed to evade American eavesdropping.

    The news is bizarre and the move by Kushner so brazen that the worst possible motives seem too stupid for the Keystone Cops, but no innocent or even semi-innocent explanations present themselves.

    First, the context: everyone in politics knew that the Kremlin was responsible for the hacks of the DNC and John Podesta. Trump had just won the election in part due to this Russian interference, and anyone with sense knew in the aftermath that anything even tangentially related to Russia would have both negative political and legal consequences. Furthermore, it was just a couple of short months from Trump’s winning the electoral college to formally taking the oath of office in January. If there was a legitimate need for any reason to communicate with Russia absent some international crisis, it could wait until Trump and Kushner were in the White House and could set up any channel with Putin that they pleased.


    There are really only two possible explanations: that Kushner needed to arrange personal matters with Russian business partners and/or creditors without anyone but the Kremlin knowing (very bad and likely criminal) or that Kushner needed to arrange some sort of political deal with the Russians without the knowledge of the American intelligence services (potentially treasonous.) Or it could be both.

    There simply isn’t any other reasonable explanation.

    Which means the White House has a whole lot of explaining to do. Not just the White House, but the entire Trump family, including Donald and Ivanka.

  4. rikyrah says:

    zizi2 Retweeted

    Nicole David @obbiecole

    Replying to @EliLake
    Is there a heinous enough crime a white man can commit without another white man coming to his defense? No, no there is not.

  5. Liza says:


    The unrelenting Republican assault on the free press continued on Friday when Greg Abbott, the Republican governor of Texas, joked about shooting journalists. The joke was made not two days after a Montana congressional candidate, Greg Gianforte, assaulted a reporter instead of answering a question on health care.

    Abbott made his joke at a gun range, after signing a bill that lowers the fee for handgun licensing. Prior to that bill’s passage, Texas already had some of the nation’s friendliest gun laws, including one that allowed for concealed weapons on public college campuses.

    After signing the fee-lowering bill, Abbott went to a gun range to show off his own prowess with firearms. Later, as he displayed his target sheet, he said, “I’m gonna carry this around in case I see any reporters.”

    The joke was made in plain view of several reporters and photographers. The entire incident was reported on Twitter by Patrick Svitek, a journalist with the Texas Tribune who covers state politics.

    The joke would have been in exceedingly poor taste in any circumstances, but it is especially so now because, on Wednesday evening, Gianforte body-slammed Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs at a public event in Bozeman, Montana.

  6. rikyrah says:

    Found at TOD:

    nothing but TRUTH


    May 27, 2017 at 10:06 am

    You see, this shit wouldn’t have worked for Obama and his black ass; you wouldn’t have afforded his black ass the benefit of the doubt.

    You would have done everything short of lynching his black ass. All over the goddamn dial last night Jared Kushner was said to be naïve or in over his head.

    From the far right to the far left Kushner was being given an
    alibi. This fucking guy tried to set up secret communications with
    Russia and everyone is giving this motherfucker a pass.

    Obama’s worst crime was trying to provide decent health care to you and you wanted to lynch his black ass over that. The white guy can pussy grab, cheat, rob and steal his way to the white house and once he’s there he can continue committing crimes and everyone makes excuses for him or looks the other way. But the black guy with his black ass has to beg you to take the gun out of your mouth and the best you can do is to try and lynch him.

    And some of you wonder why I seem to talk about race all the fucking
    time; this is the fucking reason why. We’ve got a criminal enterprise
    being run out of the White House, the President of the United States is
    overseas pushing people around and shitting on our allies. The
    son-in-law is in bed with the Russians, the Senate is one step away from taking away health care from over 20 million people. And the poor FBI, they don’t know if they’re on foot or horseback.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning,Everyone😐😐😐

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