Was Your Show Cancelled or Renewed?

By: Carter Caldwell

Just as all things have life cycles, so do our favorite TV shows.  When the end of a season rolls around, fans (and sometimes, those who work on the show) are constantly wondering if their show made it.  Generally, networks keep the shows that have large fanbases, but loyal fans are always a big plus.  Shaky ratings, on the other hand, are typically a sign of cancellation, as are consistently low ratings.  

Fortunately, cancelled shows can only lead to newer (and, logically, better) shows, and renewals promise a return of familiar characters.  Due to the volume of networks, this article will cover only renewals and cancellations made on CBS, NBC, and ABC, the “Big Three” networks of American television.

CBS

In a relatively unsurprising move, CBS opted to renew popular shows such as The Big Bang TheoryMadam Secretary, Blue Bloods, the NCIS shows, MacGyver, and Hawaii Five-0.  Surprising on the list is Criminal Minds, which suffered low ratings following the suspension and removal of Thomas Gibson, who played FBI Special Agent Aaron Hotchner. Other CBS renewals include Kevin Can Wait, Bull, Scorpion, Zoo, Mom, Superior Donuts, The Good Fight, Life in Pieces, and Man With a Plan.  Next season, CBS will be saying good bye to American Gothic, BrainDead, The Odd Couple, Doubt, Pure Genius, Rush Hour, and Training Day.

NBC

Despite fan backlash, NBC risked becoming a little more fanless with the cancellations of Powerless and Timeless, but fans of the latter can rest a little easier knowing that the showrunners are trying to find a new home.  Other NBC casualties are Aquarius, Grimm, Emerald City, and Heartbeat, while The Blacklist, Blindspot, Shades of Blue, Taken, The Carmichael Show, and The Good Place all return.  Noteworthy This Is Us acquired a special two season renewal, and all Chicago shows survived except Justice.

ABC

Disney’s ABC decided to wait until many of its shows came off the air to decided their fates, and as a result many producers finished filming without knowing what to do.  American Crime, The Real O’Neals, Last Man Standing, Mistresses, Secrets & Lies, Conviction, Notorious, Dr. Ken, The Catch, and Imaginary Mary are all goners, leaving plenty of room for new shows to accompany the renewals.   Grey’s Anatomy, How to Get Away With Murder, and Scandal all return unsurprisingly, as do Modern Family and Black-ish.  Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Once Upon a Time will be coming back also, but in the dangerous Friday night slot, with the latter also losing many cast members.  The Goldbergs, American Housewife, and Designated Survivor also live on, ensuring ABC a very diverse schedule.

Summer 2017 Movie Lineup

By: Carter Caldwell

The summer movie season is always one that guarantees fun, and this summer is no exception.  This summer will see the release of upwards of 40 films, including horror, drama, superhero, and comedy films.  On June 2, right after school lets out, Wonder Woman will be the first modern day superhero movie centered on a female superhero.  Also released on that day will be Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie (based on Dav Pikley’s best-selling series) and Dean.  Released independently in August of 2016, Dean is the story of a stylistically simple cartoon artist and the chaos that develops in his life.

June 9 will see the release of The Mummy, the first film in Universal’s “Dark Universe,” which will center on monsters such as Frankenstein, Dracula, and the Invisible Man.  It Comes at Night, a psychological horror film starring Joel Edgerton, will also premiere, as will My Cousin Rachel, Megan Leavey, and Beatriz at Dinner.  My Cousin Rachel is based on the 1951 novel of the same name, while Megan Leavey is based on the true story of a Marine and her combat dog who saved many lives in Iraq.  Beatriz at Dinner has been called “the first great film of the Trump era,” and focuses on an immigrant health practitioner who “collides” with an opinionated billionaire at a dinner party.  A week later, on June 16, Cars 3, Rough Night, All Eyez on Me, and The Book of Henry will premiere.  The third installment in Pixar’s Cars franchise, Cars 3 will focus on an aged Lightning McQueen, whose sponsors attempt to save his image by asking him to retire.  All Eyez on Me is the story of hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur and is named after his 1996 album, while The Book of Henry centers around a waitress and her sons who try to “save” a neighbor from her police commissioner stepfather.  On June 21, Transformers: The Last Knight will be the only film released, and the fifth film in Michael Bay’s Transformers franchise.  It will pick up relatively soon after Age of Extinction, which was released in 2014.

On June 23 audiences will be treated to the Jaws-esque 47 Meters Down, which follows two sisters who get stuck at the bottom of the ocean in a cage surrounded by sharks.  47 Meters will compete with The Bad Batch, a horror-comedy about a couple who find themselves vacationing among a community of cannibals.  Additionally, Sofia Coppola’s The Beguiled and Michael Showalter’s The Big Sick will be released.  Baby Driver, the story of a reluctant getaway driver who falls in love, will be released on June 28.  Closing June will be Despicable Me 3, The House, Amityville: The Awakening, and 2:22 on June 30.  Despicable Me 3 is actually the fourth film of its franchise, and it will explore Gru’s relationship with his long-lost brother.  For those looking for something more adult-oriented, Amityville and 2:22 promise edge-of your seat suspense, while The House (starring Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler) will keep the laughs rolling.
  
July also looks promising for cinemas, and it will start with the newest Marvel film, Spider-Man: Homecoming on July 7.  A week later, Andy Serkis’s War for the Planet of the Apes and Wish Upon.  Apes is the third film in its franchise, while Wish Upon is a horror film about a girl whose wishes come true, but only at a price. On July 21, Christopher Nolan’s new war drama based on World War II, Dunkirk will premiere in cinemas, as will sci-fi adventure Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets and rom-com Girls Trip.  The following week will close July with Atomic Blonde, a spy film starring Charlize Theron, adult comedy Brigsby Bear, pop culture comedy The Emoji Movie, and Al Gore documentary An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.  

As summer closes, August 4 will bring a more serious lineup of movies, with the sole comedy being Ingrid Goes West, in which Aubrey Plaza’s Ingrid moves West to become friends with social media star Taylor Sloane.  Detroit, a period crime film detailing the events of Detroit’s 1967 12th Street Riot, will also come out that day, as will the film adaptation of Stephen King’s Dark Tower series starring future James Bond Idris Elba.  Accompanying them on August 4 will be Wind River, in which a US Fish and Wildlife Service agent works as a tracker against the elements.

August 11 will bring the fourth installment to the Conjuring franchise with Annabelle: Creation.  Another franchise film to be released that day will be The Nut Job 2: Nutty By Nature.  The third film to be released on August 11 is The Glass Castle, based on Jeanette Walls’ 2005 memoir.  Brie Larson will headline, along with Naomi Watts and Woody Harrelson.  In contrast, August 18 will bring three original films, The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Logan Lucky, and Patti Cake$.  The first two will sport star-studded casts including Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson, Channing Tatum, and Academy Award winner Hilary Swank.  Patti Cake$ does not have the big name draw of its competitors, but it’s comedic synopsis (a New Jersey girl seeks fame as a gangster rapper) promises to draw interest.  Closing the summer is Leap!, an animated story about a poor girl who aims to become a ballerina and her inventor friend.

WWE Wrestle Mania… in Politics?

by Joey Derrico

The special election in Montana to replace the congressional seat of newly appointed Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke turned out to be much closer than expected. Montana was a state President Trump won by 20 percentage points and, furthermore, no Democrat had held the at-large congressional seat in two decades. The Republican candidate was Greg Gianforte, a billionaire who made his earnings by selling his company RightNow Technologies to Oracle in 2012 for $1.8 billion. The Democratic candidate was Rob Quist, a small business owner and folk singer with significant name recognition in Montana.

On the eve of election night, a reporter for the Guardian was pressing Gianforte for a comment on the newly released CBO (Congressional Budget Office) score for the Republican-led American Healthcare Act. Gianforte, in his own campaign office at the time, quickly became agitated with the Guardian reporter, saying, “I’m sick and tired of you guys [reporters]!” When the Guardian reporter, Ben Jacobs,  persisted with his question, Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck and slammed him to the ground, breaking Jacob’s glasses through the force of impact. Jacobs notified police of the incident and turned over his audio tapes to support his account. Local authorities charged Gianforte with a misdemeanor assault, who has until June 7 to appear in court.

Nevertheless, Gianforte won the special election with fifty percent of the vote compared to Quist’s forty-three percent. Many experts believe this outcome is due to Montana’s high rate of early and absentee voting. In fact, pollsters had estimated that seven out of ten likely voters had voted before election day. During his victory speech, Gianforte directly apologized to Jacobs, saying, “I should not have responded the way I did, for that I’m sorry. I should not have treated that reporter that way, and for that, I’m sorry, Mr. Ben Jacobs.”

The American Healthcare Bill Struggles in the Senate

By: Meghan Malas

The clash over philosophy, ideology, and the identity of America has been ever present in the debate over health care policy. Since the new healthcare bill passed the House of Representatives May 4, questions of morality and consequence have set forth among the public. Politifact reports the new bill proposes rolling back the expansion of Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, major cuts to Planned Parenthood (which under current law, can’t use money for abortions except those in cases of rape, incest, or risk of mother’s life), loss of specific protection for veterans, less of protection of those with pre-existing conditions, and more power given to insurance companies over their insurance policy owners. Many Republicans have longed to rid the U.S. since it was in planning stage, but after more than seven years the bill has provided coverage for millions.

According to The New York Times, it is predicted that if the new bill passes, 23 million more people will be left uninsured in a decade. This is considered the wrong direction by many representatives, including Republicans. While Democrats will vote unanimously against the bill, Republicans have fallen onto both sides of the debate. Even Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is unsure whether the Senate can obtain the newly required 50 votes to pass the bill if Republicans are not united behind it. Recently, public outrage has diminished support for the bill further.

So, it is not looking optimistic for the leaders behind the new plan. But this is not to say that it will not pass, or a staggered version of it will not. Some Republicans may not like the current implications of the “Trumpcare” plan, but they are eager to get rid of the Affordable Care Act. It will be fascinating to see how members of Congress will vote given the bill’s unpopularity, and even more interesting to see how their votes might play a role in the results of the Congressional elections next year.

Summer Jam Suggestions

By: Meghan Malas

As summer inches closer and closer, the mindsets of the student body morphs from a (somewhat) motivated, organized demeanor to one of longing. Students pine for freedom from this 7:40 to 2:40 chasm of responsibility, and with this the infamous question manifests itself among the youth- what are you doing this summer?

If you are like me, you are probably at a loss, and a little overwhelmed when asked to articulate what your priorities and/or plans are for this break. As clueless as I am about my own intentions are for my post-school life, I do have a pretty good idea of what I will be listening to when I do whatever I do. Music defines the summertime. It can make or break how enchanting your bonfire is, or how delightful your drive to the local Walmart could be. With this in mind, and as a self-certified Person With Great Taste In Summer Jams™, I present my list of top boppin’ albums for this break:

Mac Demarco- This Old Dog

Tame Impala- Currents, Lonerism

Childish Gambino- Kauai

Triathlon- Lo-Tide

A Tribe Called Quest- The Low-End Theory

Grouplove- Spreading Rumors

Red Hot Chili Peppers- Californication

Passion Pit- Kindred

Kendrick Lamar- To Pimp a Butterfly

Beach Fossils- Clash the Truth

Bellbrook Football: An offseason look at 2017

By: Sara Wolf

The fact that current Friday nights aren’t occupied with football games doesn’t mean that the football team isn’t putting in work and making improvements for when the season does come. “The team has been putting together the best offseason ever and we are working on the little things,” says 2018 senior Keion Driscoll. Jeff Jenkins, entering into his second season as Bellbrook’s head coach, set up a new offseason routine for the players. The new training schedule started just a month after this past season ended. Players stay after school to lift two days a week, and go to Fast Twitch to improve speed and agility two other days, leaving one school day off a week. In addition, some players are taking a lifting class period with their coach during the school day or have 7×1’s after school to get to know plays better. Many even get a group of players together to go to the field and work out or watch game film on their own time.

What will this next season look like? 2018 Seniors Alex Mumy, Drew Ashurst, and Skylar Golden hope to see their team win league and make playoffs. Driscoll hopes the same. “Besides [winning league], I want to get better than 7-3,” he stated. The team accomplished a record last year of 7 wins, 3 losses. It’s been over a decade since a BHS football team has had an 8-2 record. Senior Jack Campbell reflects on the team’s abilities. “We have the talent to win every game, but that’s a really really hard thing to do. So I want to win league, and compete every game, because we have the pieces to do that.”

Coach Jenkins hopes that this season, his players will work to be better than they were the day before. “I want them to just take the season day by day, not focused on end results or the end of the season,” he explained. “Just focused on the day, getting better each and every day, and making the most out of every day, that’s it.” Many players are handling the offseason with this mindset already, knowing it will channel into their performance in the fall. “I want the team to perform at its highest potential at every lifting, practice, and game. I want us to constantly get better and grow together,” says 2018 junior Brendan Labensky.

This next season shows new challenges like coaching adjustments and the loss of many key players in the 2017 class, but nothing curbs the determination of the players on the team, many of whom are already stepping things up and leading. When asked who on the team leads and pushes others to be better, a wide consensus among varsity returners and their coach was their QB, Labensky. “I see our quarterback, Brendan Labensky, really stepping up as our leader, our go-to guy,” says Jenkins. “I think he’ll have much more confidence this year, physically and mentally, I think he’s in great shape and he’s ready to take on this season and lead this team.”

Labensky is entering into his junior year, having played the quarterback position on varsity for his first year as a sophomore. He had 1018 passing yards in 2016, pushing the school record and earning the trust of his teammates. The faith the team and coaching staff invested in Labensky shaped the course of his success last season. “Before the season started [Jenkins] pulled me to the side and told me that he believed in me and trusted in me being the quarterback,” recalls Labensky. “That meant a lot to me because I never heard something like that from him before. It motivated me to be the best I could and it made me want to make him proud.” 2018 Junior Ethan Knisley says he has trust in Labensky this next season. “He shows great work ethic and knows how to run the team.” Labensky sees a lot of leadership this next year in the hands of his 2018 senior teammates Cole Taylor, Ethan Savey, and Keion Driscoll, along with fellow junior Hayden Bullock. “Savey and Cole are both hard workers and will do whatever it takes to help the team. I think Keion leads the team by example by constantly improving and getting better. Hayden Bullock has made some major improvements as well and I can also see him as a vocal leader this season.”

Each player’s goals keep them pushing through the offseason towards Friday nights. Their goals go beyond just winning. “My goal is to be remembered,” says senior Cole Taylor. “I don’t want to be just another Bellbrook team where we get lost in the shuffle like most of the others. I want our team to flow smoothly together so that when we hit the field, there’s nothing that can stop us.” Golden wants to be able to impact underclassmen teammates. “My goal is to start all games this season as well as to set an example for the younger players on the team.” Campbell, the only returning defensive back, wants to break the school record by having over 10 interceptions. These accomplishments can be made through the strength of the team. “I think every player pushes each other to be better,” explains Driscoll. “We all have the same goals and if someone is slacking, then we hold each other accountable.”

The strength of the team is thanks to their coaches. Like other sports, the players greatly respect their coaches, but the lessons their coaches teach them through the game are what makes football different. “Jenkins has taught me to keep pushing forward even if life doesn’t go your way,” explains Labensky. “He teaches us to respond to adversity by staying focused on the goal and having a short memory.” Campbell says he’s learned that if you want something, you have to work harder than everyone else. He’s also learned a lot from Jenkins’ dedication to his players, and explains a moment he saw it most last year. “I drove by the middle school in the spring or summer before the season, after I had gotten off work. I got off work really late, it was past midnight, and Jenkins was in there watching film. It was just crazy to see how much he cared about us.”

Bellbrook football has worked hard for the season ahead, but is still facing a tough schedule when the season begins. The first two games of the season are home against Tippecanoe and Fairborn. The boys will then have a televised away game as a part of ABC22/Fox45’s Thursday Night Lights series, like they did this past season against Tecumseh. They will go to play Tecumseh again on September 8. “Thursday Night Lights was a good deal for us,” recalls Jenkins. “That really got the community energized and we put on a great show; we certainly played our best that night. That was one that sits at the top of my list.”

Bellbrook Marching Band Announces Show

by Jack Long

On Saturday, May 20, Chris Foster, Director of Bellbrook Bands, announced the 2017 Marching Band show music at the annual ice-breaker. Music selections include Shostakovich’s Festival Overture and selections from Henry Mancini’s The Great Race.

The Bellbrook 2017 Marching Band show is based on an Aesop Fable: the Tortoise and the Hare; the show is entitled “Slow and Steady.”

Over the summer, students and directors will begin work on the show. Competitions start in autumn.

For your listening pleasure:


Want an easy way to support the Band Boosters? When you shop at smile.amazon.com select Bellbrook Music Boosters, and a part of the sales will go to support the high school and middle school bands.