After some insensitive tweets surfaced, ‘Outer Banks’ star Chase Stokes apologized, then claimed his Twitter account was hacked.Read More
Tonight is the season 3 finale of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. The roommates are actively getting viewers excited on social media, but Jenni “JWoww” Farley just hinted at some major news. Is she done with the show for good like Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi?
Jenni ‘JWoww’ Farley | Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for MTV
Snooki is leaving ‘Jersey Shore’
Last December, Polizzi announced that she was done with Jersey Shore on her podcast, It’s Happening With Snooki and Joey. Season 3 of Jersey Shore: Family Vacation would be her last, mostly because Polizzi didn’t like the new narrative. “I’m just not comfortable filming that show anymore with the direction it’s going with all the drama,” she explained. “I just want to move on,” Polizzi told HelloGiggles. “I’m not in the mood to do this drama with Angelina anymore, and I just want to be happy and positive, and film fun shows. I’m a mom of three, and I’m 32 years old, so when I leave my kids and film a show, I want to have a good time and not be around negative energy. So, yeah, I don’t think I’m going back.”
‘Snooki’ may not be done with television for good
Besides her desire to spend more time with her kids, Polizzi has a slew of other projects she wants to work on, including another show. A hosting gig appeals to Polizzi most. “Like a fun game show or something, where I could do something fun with the people, and it’s not all about me, ya know?” Polizzi added in her HelloGiggles interview. In 2018, she hosted MTV’s How Far Is Tattoo Far? — a project she enjoyed because the spotlight wasn’t on her. “I like having that break of not always being ‘on.’”
RELATED: ‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’: Why Angelina Laughed During ‘Snooki,’ ‘JWoww,’ and Deena’s Wedding Speech
Polizzi isn’t solely interested in a hosting gig. “I would love to do something with Jenni again, just because filming Snooki & Jwoww, our spinoff from Jersey Shore a while ago, was the fun-est show ever.” Now, it seems like that might be possible, considering Farley’s most recent announcement.
Deena Cortese might be done with ‘Jersey Shore’
Given all of the drama that occurred at Angelina Pivarnick’s wedding, Cortese may be ready to move on from reality TV. Like her fellow meatball, Cortese is a mom with aspirations outside of Jersey Shore. Her “Mommy-and-Me” clothing line, Christopher John, is set to launch Father’s Day 2020. And considering how she said she would “never film with Angelina again,” fans think Cortese might be done with the show now more than ever.
Is ‘JWoww’ done with ‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’ too?
Like many fans predicted, it seems that Farley is removing herself from Jersey Shore: Family Vacation. Though a fourth season has yet to be confirmed, it doesn’t seem likely that Farley will be part of it should the reality series get renewed. “I am way to ride or die to see you leave,” Farley tweeted regarding Polizzi’s exit from the show. “If you’re done, I’m done. There’s no Jwoww without my Snooki.”
RELATED: ‘Jersey Shore’: Will Nicole ‘Snooki’ Polizzi Let Her Kids Watch the Show?
Farley’s tweet comes as a shock to Jersey Shore: Family Vacation fans. With so many of the roommates making their exit, it’s looking less likely that the show will continue with another season. For now, fans can turn to Pauly DelVecchio and Vinny Guadagnino’s side projects for a good laugh.
Since George Floyd’s death on May 25, 2020, protests against police brutality have taken over the nation. Dave Burd, better known by his rap persona Lil Dicky, took to Instagram to encourage his fans to become part of the solution.
Dave Burd a.k.a Lil Dicky | Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images
Lil Dicky has a national reach
Aside from becoming a viral sensation on YouTube for his song “Ex-Boyfriend,” Burd has recently stepped into the television spotlight. His FXX series Dave gives fans a glimpse at Burd’s life before his music career took off. The series was recently green-lit for another season. Now, Burd is using his voice to make an impact at a time when it matters most.
As a caucasian, Jewish rapper, Burd has had many difficult conversations as they relate to the music industry, privilege, and appropriation. Recognizing his fame, Burd used his influence to connect with his fans and speak to the issues Floyd’s death has presented.
Lil Dicky’s personal experiences with racism
Burd posted to his Instagram regarding his experiences with racial injustice and how, in the past, he ignored the situation.
“Even though things are at such a boiling point right now, perhaps the saddest thing to me is that none of this is remotely new,” Burd wrote in a text post to Instagram. He admits he has been oblivious to systemic racism, saying, “When I saw anything on the news, I thought to myself, ‘how can someone actually be racist, that’s so illogical and dumb.’ And I left it at that. I figured something so clearly wrong, and so legitimately evil could never continue to survive in today’s ‘enlightened’ society. I was wrong.”
Dave Burd, Instagram
RELATED: ‘Dave’ Is Coming Back; Here’s What to Expect From Lil Dicky in Season 2
Then he focused on the impact racism has had on his life and the lives of his friends. On several occasions, Burd says he was witness to Elz (Travis ‘Taco’ Bennett) and GaTa experience the hate of racism. He recounts the times he has seen black colleagues were wrongfully accused of doing something simply because of the color of their skin. He wrote about being at parties with GaTa and haring people threaten to “curb stomp him.” Burd said he was accused of stealing people’s laptops after he brought Elz and GaTa around.
“Nobody ever accused me of stealing anything before I hung out with GaTa,” Burd wrote. He recounted the many times racist events occurred and how mad he was about them, and how GaTa and Elz treated the situations as “business as usual.” After recalling these horrible instances, Burd’s focus shifts into a call of action for his fans and followers.
Lil Dicky encouraged action amongst fans
Using his fame and position as an “unaffected” party, Burd called for his fans to take action. “The people that are affected the most by this — their voices aren’t the loudest,” the rapper wrote. “It’s just astronomically harder for them to have the platform to be heard. So what’s becoming clear to me is that those of us unaffected every day by racism need to fight this fight harder than anyone.”
Though he’s unsure about his next move, Burd made a pledge to donate money, educate himself on the issues at hand, and do whatever he can to help.
Burd concluded his post with a hopeful message: “I believe that we are here to love. But hate will not disappear on its own. I beg all of you to join the fight. Not with violence, but with love. Because love will beat hate if we want it bad enough.”
Outer Banks star Chase Stokes is currently in some hot water. After insensitive tweets from his past surfaced, the Netflix star posted a sincere apology. Shortly after the apology was posted, it was removed — along with the derogatory tweets — which Stokes attributed to his account being hacked. Here’s what we know.
Chase Stokes in ‘Outer Banks’ | Curtis Baker/Netflix
RELATED: ‘Outer Banks’: Why Fans Think Madelyn Cline and Chase Stokes Are Dating
Fans love Chase Stokes as John B
Stokes has recently been in the spotlight thanks to his role as John B on the Netflix series Outer Banks. The show tells the tale of a group of high-school-aged teens in search of $400 million in gold. As the lead in the series, Stokes quickly became a fan favorite.
The derogatory tweets from Chase Stokes’ past
A few insensitive tweets from Stokes’ youth surfaced on May 18. Fans took screenshots of the tweets in question. In on tweet, Stokes was presumably referring to Justin Bieber, writing: “Bieber means beaver in German ha..F*g.”
Another tweet included a photo captioned, “Surf n*gg.” Stokes later claimed the photo wasn’t of him or anyone that he knows. Another screenshot showed a tweet that read, “Just because [you’re] old doesn’t give you the right to drive like a r*tard.”
RELATED: ‘Outer Banks’: Everything the Series Gets Wrong About Outer Banks, North Carolina
Chase Stokes apologized for the tweets — then deleted the apology
“I am flawed, and I am sorry,” the Outer Banks star tweeted on May 18. His apology was included as a screen shot of a note that read:
Yes. I will address this. I was not hiding. I consulted in one of my closest friends just as anybody else would. I have posted insensitive tweets. My Facebook has been hacked countless times. The picture isn’t even of me or anybody I know. Again, I am incredibly sorry. I really am. I hope you guys see what I am currently doing and how I am continuing to do the right thing by being respectful in today’s climate. This does not excuse my words, nor am I excusing myself. I will continue to work towards using my platform in the same capacity I have been and doing/bringing light to the world.
Shortly after Stokes published the apology on Twitter, it was removed — along with the derogatory tweets.
Chase Stokes said his Twitter was hacked
After removing his formal apology and the insensitive tweets fans had found, Stokes claimed he was locked out of his Twitter account. He then explained how he had been trying to reset his password.
Yo just getting back into twitter. My password was changed, figuring things out. I’m really sorry that this is all happening at once.
— Chase Stokes (@hichasestokes) May 19, 2020
RELATED: ‘Outer Banks’ Star Chase Stokes Said He Would ‘Shoot His Shot’ With ‘Friends’ Jennifer Aniston
“Somebody obviously got access to my account. So I’m trying to solve this,” he tweeted a minute later. Some fans seemed to be confused by the rapid pace at which this story developed, while others defended Stokes. “I already dug into one of the people trying to cancel you so I’m not going to repeat myself too much,” one fan tweeted. “Just wanted to say that a lot of the people attacking you are actual children that don’t even remember 2007, 2010 or 2013. You were a kid and you made mistakes, that’s ok.”
Other fans weren’t so sure Stokes’ was telling the truth about his account being hacked. “I’m sorry Chase but the whole hacking thing happening at the same time as everything else is [really suspect], ur gonna have to prove that someone hacked into ur account or something bc i KNOW people aren’t gonna believe it,” a speculative fan wrote.
At the time of publication, Stokes’ apology hasn’t been republished on his social media accounts.
In Outer Banks, Kooks and Pogues don’t mix. That is, unless you’re Sarah Cameron and John B. The Netflix series looks at the relationships between the wealthy Kooks and the home-grown Pogues. One of those relationships is a broken friendship between Kiara — better known as Ki — and Sarah.
Find out what Sarah Cameron did to create the divide between her and Kiara.
[Spoiler Alert: Spoilers ahead for Outer Banks Season 1.]
Chase Stokes, Madison Bailey, Jonathan Daviss, and Madelyn Cline in ‘Outer Banks’ | Netflix
Rivalry runs deep in ‘Outer Banks’
One of the driving storylines in Outer Banks Season 1 is the divide between the Kooks and Pogues. According to the main protagonist, John B, “The Cut” is the “home of the working class” — also referred to as Pogues. The nickname is meant to denote that Pogues are on the lowest end of the food chain — similar to the pogue fish used to attract larger fish.
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On the contrary, Kooks are the wealthy members of the Outer Banks. Historically, surfers have used the term Kook to describe someone who can’t surf but will pretend that they can for recognition. As far as the Kooks depicted in Outer Banks, they’re natives with a lot of money — something that makes it impossible for them to fit into the laid back vibe of the surfer town.
Kiara and Sarah have a history
Throughout the early episodes in the series, Ki made it clear to her Pogue lads that she had a strong dislike for Sarah because she betrayed her. Ki was very elusive as to what that meant, only ever comparing Sarah to “a spitting cobra.”
Ki is a self-proclaimed Pogue, but she was born into a wealthy family and therefore considered a Kook by the rest of society. At some point in her life, Ki attended a Kook school with Sarah Cameron. Ki recalled the day she was befriended by Sarah, who offered to help her save baby turtles. Later, Ki expressed that Sarah betrayed her without ever specifying how.
The real reason Kiara disliked Sarah Cameron
After John B determined that he needed the help of both Sarah and Ki to find the Royal Merchant gold, he concocted a plan to rectify their friendship. John B (Chase Stokes), Pope (Jonathan Daviss), and JJ (Rudy Pakow) abandoned Sarah and Ki on a boat so that they could sort out their differences.
Reluctant at first, the two eventually decided to share a joint after Sarah was stung by a jellyfish. Then, Ki opened up about her issues with Sarah. She revealed that during their childhood, Sarah didn’t invite Kiara to one of her birthday parties. That hurt Kiara deeply — so much so that she had held onto it, even years later.
There’s a reason Sarah Cameron hurt Kiara
As it turned out, there was a reason why Sarah chose to leave Kiara off of the invite list for her birthday party. “You liked me,” Sarah said. “When people get close to me, I feel trapped. And I bail, and I blame them for it.”
“You ghosted me, and I don’t even know why,” Kiara said, explaining how much Sarah’s decision hurt her. Then, Kiara revealed what she did to cope with not being invited. After seeing all of her classmates enjoying the party on Instagram, Kiara called the cops to have the party broken up — a detail that made both girls laugh and ultimately restored their friendship.
After a night together on the boat, the boys returned to find Sarah and Kiara seemingly the same. They agreed not to clue the boys in on how well their plan had worked, but deep down, there was an understanding and a rekindled friendship between them.
Will that friendship last? Hopefully we’ll find out if a second season of Outer Banks is ever confirmed.
The Netflix docuseries Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness captured the cruel treatment of tigers and other exotic animals at the Greater Wynnewood Exotic Animal Park (also known as the G.W. Zoo) in Oklahoma.
The former owner of the zoo, Joseph Maldonado-Passage, better known as Joe Exotic, was sentenced to 22 years in prison for animal abuse and an elaborate murder-for-hire plot.
Fortunately, many of the tigers and bears featured from the docuseries were rescued by the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Keenesburg, Colorado.
Tigers Rescued from G.W. Zoo | Helen H. Richardson/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post
Saving wildlife from Joe Exotic’s zoo
Becca Miceli, the Chief Science and Animal Welfare Officer at the Wild Animal Sanctuary, explained the process of rescuing the tigers to a CBS affiliate in Denver. “In 2017, we went on two different rescues to help get a total of 39 tigers and three black bears out of the facility,” Miceli said.
Miceli explained that many of the animals rescued from the G.W. Zoo had orthopedic issues as a result of poor nutrition. “They ranged in different conditions, I think the biggest thing is that they were all exploited to some degree,” Miceli said, then elaborated: “Whether it be for entertainment watching, a person play with them, for people to take selfies with.”
In the documentary series, Maldonado-Passage had trouble affording enough food to feed all of the tigers he held in captivity. He also allowed the G.W. Zoo guests to pay to play with tiger cubs.
The difference between the Colorado sanctuary and the G.W. Zoo
Kent Drotar, the public relations director for the Wild Animal Sanctuary told People how their organization is “almost the complete anthesis to what those other places [like the G.W. Zoo] do.” Unlike the private zoos depicted in Tiger King, the Colorado rescue “give[s] permanent homes to animals that come from situations like that,” Drotar explained.
The Wild Animal Sanctuary operates as a non-profit and consists of two properties. The Wild Animal Sanctuary is where illegally bred and kept animals are taken upon rescue, and the Wild Animal Refuge, which is as an extra 10,000-acres that provides more space for the sanctuary’s rescues.
Unlike the G.W. Zoo, the Wild Animal Sanctuary and the Wild Animal Refuge do not breed animals, nor do they allow guests to have hands-on contact.
The Wild Animal Sanctuary in Colorado
The Wild Animal Sanctuary has rescued more than 1,000 animals in its 40-year history, with more than 520 lions, tigers, bears, wolves, and other rescued animals as listed on their website.
Drotar explained that 80% of the animals at the sanctuary come to them after being confiscated by law enforcement. He told People the animals often come by way of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) or U.S. Fish and Wildlife, who seize abused or illegally-owned wild animals. The Wild Animal Sanctuary serves as a safe place for those animals to live once legal proceedings connected to their seizure are complete.
Drotar said Maldonado-Passage’s tigers and bears came to the sanctuary “through a mix of surrender and the threat of legal action.” After attempting to confuse law enforcement by moving 19 tigers from the G.W. Zoo to another privately owned zoo in Dade City, Florida, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) filed a lawsuit against the Florida zoo for allowing cub petting.
To avoid the legal trouble Maldonado-Passage was threatened with as a result of his actions, he agreed to give up the tigers and bears to the Wild Animal Sanctuary. Drotar said Maldonado-Passage’s decision came just after his husband Travis Maldonado died.
While Maldonado-Passage sits in prison, his tigers are living a better life. Drotar reported that the animals rescued from the “Tiger King’s” zoo are happier now. “It was almost an immediate change [in] their demeanor,” Drotar said, adding: “They see other tigers. They see other animals. They see a horizon. They just have more of a purpose for living.”
Yesterday, fans of the Netflix docuseries Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness heard even more bizarre stories about the one and only Joseph Maldonado-Passage, a.k.a Joe Exotic. The Tiger King and I, hosted by comedian Joel McHale, went into greater detail about what it was like to work at with Maldonado-Passage at the G.W. Zoo.
While many people were excited about the prospect of new Tiger King content, some viewers took issue with the ‘rude sarcasm’ McHale interjected throughout his interviews with the cast of the docuseries.
Joel McHale | Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for The Michael J. Fox Foundation
[Spoiler Alert: Details about The Tiger King and I ahead.]
Who was part of ‘The Tiger King and I’?
McHale spoke with many of the famous characters from the wildly popular docuseries, including reality television producer Rick Kirkham and the current owners of the G.W. Zoo, Jeff and Lauren Lowe.
Maldonado-Passage’s former campaign manager, Josh Dial, was also interviewed. McHale’s conversation with Dial covered what is was like managing Maldonado-Passage’s political campaign and the PTSD he suffered from witnessing Travis Maldonado’s accidental suicide.
Head zookeeper Erik Cowie announced that he has never done drugs, despite what fans of the show have said. When McHale asked Cowie if Maldonado-Passage should ever be released from prison, Cowie replied: “Twenty-two years doing federal time — that guy’s gonna die in there. So, good riddance.”
Other staff, like John Reinke and Kelci “Saff” Saffery, were also interviewed. They explained how difficult it was to work for and trust Maldonado-Passage and how they never stopped trusting the animals.
Missing from the 40-minute special was Carole Baskin, owner of the Big Cat Rescue and notorious arch-nemesis of Maldonado-Passage.
Joel McHale criticized as host of ‘Tiger King’ special
Those familiar with McHale’s background on The Soup would understand that he has a very sarcastic sense of humor. That sarcasm was injected into his interviews with the Tiger King cast, which angered several viewers.
One Instagram user wrote, “The episode kinda sucked, dude. It didn’t need comedy. It already was tragedy meets comedy.” Another user on Twitter wrote: “Tiger king and I was lame, don’t do a Game of Thrones and ruin something good.”
In a time where a majority of what’s on television has to do with the coronavirus, many fans thought the comedic flair McHale brought to The Tiger King and I was warranted. McHale supporters rallied in his defense, saying his “his jaded sarcasm” was just what the episode needed.
Wait are people legitimately angry at Joel McHale for some of his comments in #TheTigerKingAndI? Being a dead-pan, condescending douchebag is his entire bit. It’s precisely why Netflix got him to host it and his jaded sarcasm worked perfectly #TigerKing
— Ben R (@benrud91) April 13, 2020
Everyone angry at #joelmchale really need to watch The Soup. Rude sarcasm is what he does!!!
— sam logan (@samtweets33) April 13, 2020
Animal activists were disappointed with ‘Tiger King and I’
McHale wasn’t the only issue viewers had with The Tiger King and I. In the episode, Kirkham mentioned that the best thing to come out of the Netflix docuseries was the attention it raised about exotic animals kept in captivity. Other than that, not very much good came out of the world Joe Exotic created.
Regardless of what Kirkham thinks, many animal rights activists were displeased with the original docuseries and even more upset with the special. Many viewers believed that the series sensationalized Joe Exotic instead of shining a light on how to improve the issue of exotic animals in captivity.
As people are wont to do, viewers took to Twitter to express their disappointment in The Tiger King and I special.
why not a special focused on issues surrounding animal cruelty that were eclipsed by your transparent thirst to turn these horrible people into memes and internet celebrities? walk the talk.while you’re at it, #renewannewithane pic.twitter.com/zOqww1rdzy
— ✨kindreds (@kindredzxx) April 13, 2020
Another Twitter user addressed Netflix profiting from a series that showcases the abuse and exploration of animals:
Watching #TigerKingandI Can’t help but wonder what Netflix is doing to support righting the wrongs seen in #TigerKing. If you are going to profit from the abuse/exploitation of animals you should make up for it. Let’s face it, TigerKing glorifies & makes fun of animal cruelty.
Still, other people were angry at the production quality of the episode, which was filmed was filmed on iPhones given everyone’s self-quarantining. Many viewers took their anger out on the producers of the series, referring to the latest episode as “the worst thing Netflix has put out.”
Form your own opinion! Tune into Netflix for the eight installment of Maldonado-Passage’s tale, The Tiger King and I.
Related: ‘Tiger King’: People are Hoping for Another Season and Creators Say Season 2 Could Happen
‘Some Good News’: Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Malala Yousafzai, plus Jon Stewart Celebrate the particular Class of 2020
John Krasinski, known for his roles in The Office, the Jack Ryan series, and A Quiet Place, has been providing fans with hope during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic with his YouTube series Some Good News (SGN).
On May 3, SGN hosted a special ceremony for all of the students that were set to graduate this year featuring special guests Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, Malala Yousafzai, and Jon Stewart. Here’s the advice they had for the Class of 2020.
Oprah Winfrey inspires a 2020 Grad | Instagram
‘SGN’ is the content we all need right now
In March 2020, Krasinski asked his followers on social media for “some good news.” At first, fans thought the post was simply Krasinski’s way of interacting with them, but they soon learned he was crowd-sourcing stories for a new web series highlighting, well — some good news!
Alright everybody, how about #SomeGoodNews ! Send me the stories that have made you feel good this week or the things that just made you smile!
— John Krasinski (@johnkrasinski) March 25, 2020
Given the state of affairs in the world right now, it’s hard to turn the television on without hearing about less than cheerful news. Krasinski sought to create an outlet where people could turn to for some amusing stories. So far, Krasinski has shared heartwarming stories from around the world, including conversations with celebrity guests like his Office co-star Steve Carell, Guy Fieri, Brad Pitt, and Ryan Reynolds.
‘Some Good News’ hosted a virtual graduation for the Class of 2020
Krasinski brought in some special guests for Episode 6: Graduation 2020. With the help of media mogul Winfrey, Oscar-winning director Spielberg, Nobel Prize laureate Yousafzai, and comedian Stewart, Krasinski wished the Class of 2020 well and sent them off with some sage advice.
A few lucky viewers were able to interact with Krasinski’s celebrity guests and ask for some advice as they leave school behind and enter the real world.
Steven Spielberg spoke about following your dreams
“Dreams are a great test because dreams are going to test your resolve,” Speilberg shared with a grad who asked for advice on how to follow your heart, even when it felt like the world was against you.
“You’re going to know a dream from a pipedream. A real dream is something that not only hangs on to you, but you will hang onto it. And it will power you through every obstacle people and the environment will throw against you.”
Oprah Winfrey shared how her greatest humiliation was ultimately a triumph
A Harvard graduate who was named the first Youth Poet laureate in the country’s history spoke with Winfrey about an impactful moment in her life when things didn’t go her way. Winfrey explained the demotion she received in her first job as a news anchor, simply because her co-anchor didn’t like her.
That demotion turned out to be the best thing that could have happened to Winfrey’s career. “I’m being called in by the bosses and told that I’m no longer going to be needed on the news,” Winfrey said. “Instead of firing me, what they did was put me on the local talk show.”
And as they say, the rest is history. “I believe that failure is an opportunity to move yourself in a different direction,” Winfrey told the Harvard graduate. “It gets better because you learn the lessons for the first time.”
Malala Yousafzai and Jon Stewart encouraged graduates to embrace their beliefs and the unknown
“Believe in your voice — continue speaking, and don’t give up,” Yousafzai shared with another graduate who asked what advice Yousafzai would give to her younger self. “Society tries to define us and tries to limit us. Do not listen to that. Ignore all of that and believe in yourself and continue to do what you strongly believe in and what you want to do.”
“You have no idea what’s about to come at you, and man, isn’t that the beautiful part of it?” Stewart told a fan who asked, “What’s next?” Stewart’s advice was to embrace that unknown and all of the possibilities that come with it.
Check out Krasinski’s lastest episode of SGN for all of the good vibes. And congratulations to the Class of 2020!
The star of Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness Joseph Maldonado-Passage, also known as Joe Exotic, would have you believe he was a country music star. Many of Maldonado-Passage’s eccentric music videos are highlighted throughout the seven-part docuseries.
In some of his videos, Maldonado-Passage is pictured wearing priest attire. Here’s why Maldonado-Passage decided to dress like a priest.
Joe Exotic | ‘Here Kitty Kitty’ YouTube
Joe Exotic’s country music career
Maldonado-Passage was a man with several interests, including country music. Thanks to Netflix, his most famous songs include “I Saw a Tiger,” an ode to his life passion, and “Here Kitty Kitty,” a song about Carole Baskin and how she presumably fed her missing husband, Don Lewis, to tigers.
Maldonado-Passage may have come up with the ideas for his songs, but musicians Vince Johnson and Danny Clinton are responsible for the music and lyrics. Better known as the Clinton Johnson Band, both artists are listed in the credits of the Netflix series.
In an interview with the Los Angeles Times, Tiger King creators Eric Goode and Rebecca Chaiklin explained how Maldonado-Passage’s vocals were featured on certain songs. The duo struggled to determine which songs Maldonado-Passage was featured on, but admitted that a fact-checker told them Exotic could be heard singing on individual tracks.
Goode also mentioned a deleted scene from Tiger King, where Maldonado-Passage commented: “Of course not every singer sings all his songs, that’s just how it’s done.” It shouldn’t come as a surprise that Maldonado-Passage believed anyone could be both a musician and a singer but never actually sing.
Why Joe Exotic dressed as a priest
Mateusz Gugałka, who produced some of Maldonado-Passage’s music videos, told Vanity Fair that Maldonado-Passage was insistent on writing and recording videos for his music.
At 22-years-old, Gugałka started working for Maldonado-Passage after moving to the U.S. from Poland. Gugałka recalled how Maldonado-Passage “would not give [him] any notice about shooting music videos.” Instead, Gugałka said:
[Maldonado-Passage] would just wake up one morning sometimes…and say, ‘We’re going to shoot a music video today, because I had a dream, pretty much, of how I want it to look.’ Then he would show up dressed like a priest.
Mateusz Gugałka, Vanity Fair
It was Gugałka’s understanding that the “Tiger King” was “trying to start his own church at the zoo.” Gugałka didn’t know if Maldonado-Passage wanted to do so for tax reasons or he simply wanted to marry people.
Music videos featuring Joe Exotic in priestly attire
In the video for “Here Kitty Kitty,” Maldonado-Passage is wearing a clerical collar. Maldonado-Passage is also seen in his priestly attire holding a newborn in the music video for “Guardians of Children” — a tune about the “bikers who protect abused children in our country.”
Recording music videos wasn’t the only time Maldonado-Passage wore his priest look. During the docuseries, Maldonado-Passage can be seen dressed as a priest leading his husband Travis Maldonado’s funeral service.
Maldonado met his tragic end with an accidental suicide. Tiger King explained how Maldonado removed the magazine from a pistol to show that it wouldn’t fire without it, despite having bullets in the chamber.
It may be some time before Maldonado-Passage gets to fulfill his dream and start his own church. The 57-year-old was sentenced to 22 years in prison for killing tigers and the infamous murder-for-hire plot to kill Baskin.
Related: No, Netflix’s ‘Tiger King’ Joe Exotic Didn’t Record the Vocals for His Country Songs
Netflix’s Tiger King: Murder, Madness, and Mayhem tells the tale of Joseph Maldonado-Passage, better known as Joe Exotic. The seven-part docuseries captured the many people involved in Maldonado-Passage’s story, including the iconic reality television producer, Rick Kirkham.
As a well-known producer, Kirkham linked up with Maldonado-Passage in the hopes of making a reality show about the “Tiger King.” Kirkham took up residency at Maldonado-Passage’s G.W. Zoo, where he witnessed all of the insanity that happened there.
Before seeking out big cat lover Maldonado-Passage, Kirkham had a wildly successful career as a reality television star himself.
Rick Kirkham | J. Vespa/WireImage
Who is Rick Kirkham?
According to an ABC News profile, Kirkham received his first camera when he was 14-years-old. He would later use that camera to capture “a video diary of [his] life as he talked intimately about his addiction, his guilt and the love of his two boys, which would ultimately save him from self-destruction.”
Before he became addicted to drugs, Kirkham was a dancer on Dick Clark’s American Bandstand. According to his LinkedIn profile, Kirkham obtained a degree in Broadcast Journalism from the University of Central Oklahoma in 1981. Later, he became a crime reporter in Las Vegas for an NBC affiliate.
His days as a crime reporter are where Kirkham earned his place in the spotlight. Accompanying police on drug busts, Kirkham got to carry a gun and wear a bulletproof vest. Ironically, it was during this time Kirkham became addicted to crack cocaine.
Later, Kirkham started working for Inside Edition, where he became known for his willingness to participate in wild stunts like setting himself on fire (as seen in Tiger King). In 1996, Kirkham was fired from Inside Edition because of his addiction.
Rick Kirkham attempted suicide
When Kirkham lost his job, he lost his family and almost lost his life, too. Per Oxygen, Kirkham attempted suicide by taking 100 pills and drinking two beers while driving his Jeep, recording his every move. After surviving a near-fatal car accident, Kirkham decided to turn his life around for his two sons.
A filmmaker, Kirkham recorded much of his addiction on camera. He took “over 46 boxes of film and 3,200 videotapes” of footage and had them made into the documentary T.V. Junkie, which was later used in schools to teach kids about the dangers of drug addiction.
After getting sober, Kirkham started working as a producer for RealReels. He also briefly worked for KFBB-TV in Montana as a news director before meeting Maldonado-Passage.
Why did Rick Kirkham want to work on ‘Tiger King’?
Kirkham sought to capitalize on the unusual nature that “Joe Exotic” exuded by filming his every move and turning it into a reality television show.
In an interview with Extra TV, Kirkham conceded that being on camera was like a drug to Maldonado-Passage, which made for good reality television.
Kirkham also described the footage he captured that was later famously burned, per the Netflix series: “If I were to let the video out that I have shot of [Maldonado-Passage] killing animals on this park, of [Maldonado-Passage] tricking people by taking in their animals, [Maldonado-Passage] would probably go to jail.”
In that same interview, Kirkham shared that Maldonado-Passage was a “very evil guy to the animals and the people” that worked for him.
What does Rick Kirkham do now?
Kirkham has experienced something of a resurgence in the news since the Tiger King docuseries aired. Despite Kirkham’s original footage being destroyed, his truth was exposed thanks to his feature in the documentary.
According to Kirkham’s Facebook profile, he is currently living in Bodo, Norway, where he works as a freelance reporter for RealReels. Kirkham married his girlfriend Kristin E Rosøy Kirkham in April 2018.
How to get help: In the U.S., call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. Or text HOME to 741-741 to connect with a trained crisis counselor at the free Crisis Text Line.
How to get help: In the U.S., contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration helpline at 1-800-662-4357.
Adam Schlesinger, one of the most recognized songwriters of his generation, died April 1 from complications caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). He was 52 and is survived by his two daughters, Sadie and Claire Schlesinger.
Adam Schlesinger | Scott Gries/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival
Who is Adam Schlesinger?
Schlesinger was best known for his work in the band Fountains of Wayne. The ’90s alternative pop band hit the charts in 2003 with their song “Stacy’s Mom.”
Together with Chris Collingwood, Schlesinger released five studio albums between 1996 and 2001 as Fountains of Wayne. Their 2003 album Welcome Interstate Managers — which introduced the world to “Stacy’s Mom” — remains their most famous work.
Schlesinger also experienced success outside of the alt-pop band. He played in other bands like Ivy and the synth-pop group Fever High. Schlesinger was also a member of the band Tinted Windows — a short-lived supergroup that featured Taylor Hanson of Hanson, Bun E. Carlos of Cheap Trick, and James Iha of The Smashing Pumpkins.
Schlesinger also wrote for movies and television
Schlesinger was responsible for the title track for the Tom Hank’s film That Thing You Do!, which earned him an Academy Award nomination. Schlesinger also wrote the songs on the Josie and the Pussycats soundtrack.
Working with David Javerbaum, Schlesinger co-wrote songs performed in the 2008 Broadway musical Cry-Baby. The duo was nominated for two Tonys and won a Grammy for A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All!.
Schlesinger was also nominated for 10 Emmys for writing comedic songs across several television shows, like The CW’s series Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Throughout his career, he won three Emmys.
Adam Schlesinger died from COVID-19 complications
Schlesinger died on Wednesday morning at a hospital in Poughkeepsie, New York. Josh Grier, Schlesinger’s lawyer, told The Associated Press that it’s not clear where or how he contracted the virus. Schlesinger had been sedated and put on a ventilator in the days leading up to his death.
According to the New York Times, Schlesinger is also survived by his parents, Bobbi and Stephen Schlesinger, a sister, Laurie Rose, and his partner, Alexis Morley.
Celebrities react to the loss of Schlesinger
As a friend and former colleague, Tom Hanks took to Twitter to celebrate the life of Schlesinger. Hanks called him “a One-der,” then added, “Lost him to COVID-19. Terribly sad today.” Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson are still in Australia recovering from the Coronavirus.
There would be no Playtone without Adam Schlesinger, without his That Thing You Do! He was a One-der. Lost him to Covid-19. Terribly sad today. Hanx
— Tom Hanks (@tomhanks) April 2, 2020
Schlesinger’s co-writer for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend Rachel Bloom also mourned his loss. In 2019 Schlesinger, Bloom, and Jack Dolgen won an Emmy for the song, “Antidepressants Are So Not A Big Deal.”
Bloom was across the country, welcoming a baby girl into the world when Schlesinger died. She took to Instagram to celebrate the birth of her daughter and remember her “dear friend:”
Having a baby in the NICU during a pandemic while a dear friend was in the hospital 3,000 miles away made this by far the most emotionally intense week of mine and Gregor’s lives. As the lovely doctors and nurses helped my daughter get some fluid out of her lungs, we watched the maternity ward around us change hourly to prepare for the upcoming COVID storm. The whole family is now home safe and I am just so grateful to all of our medical workers. From those in our NICUs to those directly helping COVID patients like Adam, they are sacrificing so much to fight on the front lines of this war. Thank you thank you thank you.
Rachel Bloom, Instagram
Other celebrity deaths caused COVID-19
The Coronavirus pandemic is sweeping the nation, with local governments still trying to get ahead of the spread of the virus. Recently, other celebrities like jazz guitarist Bucky Pizzarelli have died as a result of Coronavirus complications.
Jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis also died Wednesday at the age of 85 from complications related to the Coronavirus. In March, the Coronavirus took the lives of country star Joe Diffie and Alan Merrill, who wrote the Joan Jett hit “I Love Rock’ n’ Roll,” amongst others.
Schlesinger will be remembered for years to come for his varied contributions to the world of music.
The Netflix docuseries Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem, and Madness is all anyone can talk about right now. Netflix couldn’t have picked a better time to release the series, considering everyone is home and practicing social distancing.
Tiger King showcases the dark world of big cat “conservation” in the United States with a focus on the G.W. Zoo in Oklahoma, Myrtle Beach Safari in South Carolina, and Big Cat Rescue just outside of Tampa in Florida.
The cast of wacky characters in Tiger King are enough to captivate any audience, but it’s the way each of these character’s stories intertwine that make the series truly binge-worthy.
Since watching the seven-part series, Tiger King fans are eager to learn more. The creators of the series say that just might happen!
Joe Exotic – Tiger King | Netflix
The story of the ‘Tiger King’
Tiger King follows Joe “Exotic” Maldonado-Passage (nee: Schreibvogel), owner of the G.W. Zoo in Oklahoma, and big cat fanatic. In his quest for fame and success, Joe Exotic takes on several business ventures, including becoming a country singer, reality television personality, and tiger cub breeder. The series also highlighted when Exotic running for president in 2016, and then governor of Oklahoma when that fell through.
Joe Exotic isn’t the only interesting character Tiger King featured. Bhagavan “Doc” Antle, the owner of Myrtle Beach Safari, was also involved in the series. Then there was Carol Baskins — Joe Exotic’s arch-nemesis and owner of Big Cat Rescue near Tampa, Florida. The series captured Exotic’s focus as it slowly became less about caring for wild animals and more about taking down Baskins.
People still have so many questions about what happened in ‘Tiger King’
Tiger King took the world by storm. After binge-watching the seven-part docuseries that features country music, polygamy, drugs, a missing person, murder-for-hire, and possible cult activity, people still have several unanswered questions about Joe Exotic and his motley crew.
For example, is Joe Exotic going to shift his focus to prison reform, a la Kim Kardashian West?
Why wasn’t Jeff Lowe scrutinized for his involvement in the murder-for-hire plot? Did Lowe ever open the new zoo in Thackerville, Oklahoma?
Most importantly, are the lions and tigers and bears okay?
There might be a follow up to ‘Tiger King’
Tiger King fans are eager to hear more from Joe Exotic and the rest of the big cat world. The producers of the show have hinted that there could be a second season in the works.
Eric Goode and Rebecca Chaiklin spoke with Entertainment Weekly, where Chaiklin revealed that the story was “To be continued.” She explained that they still “have a crazy amount of footage, and it’s a story that’s still unfolding.”
What will the second season of Tiger King look like? Chaiklin isn’t sure, adding “there could be a follow-up on this story because there’s a lot that’s still unfolding in it, and it’ll be just as dramatic and just as colorful as what has unfolded these past few years.”
Another season of Tiger King has yet to be confirmed, but fans are hopeful that it will happen given what the producers have teased.