Fans petition to create first LGBT ‘Star Wars’ character after Orlando shooting

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“Star Wars” fans have created a petition calling for the franchise to make its first LGBT character in honor of the Orlando, Fla. mass shooting.

The petition was created seven days ago by Joshua Yehl who was friends with Christopher Andrew “Drew” Leinonen — one of the 49 victims of the mass shooting that took place at the gay nightclub Pulse. Yehl writes to Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy and Walt Disney Company CEO Bob Iger, asking that the new character draw inspiration from Leinonen. Here is an excerpt from the petition:

On June 12, 2016, the world lost one of its most passionate Star Wars fans. On that day, 49 voices cried out and were silenced by hate. One of them was my best friend, Christopher Andrew “Drew” Leinonen. He and I bonded over many things, but nothing brought us together like Star Wars.

Yehl has garnered nearly 5,000 signatures, using the hashtag #PutDrewInStarWars on social media to spread the word. He writes that an LGBT character would not just be for Leinonen but for all the Orlando shooting victims.

“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams said earlier this year that the film franchise is about inclusivity and welcomes the idea of having a gay character.

““I would love it,” he said in an interview with the The Daily Beast. “To me, the fun of Star Wars is the glory of possibility. So it seems insanely narrow-minded and counterintuitive to say that there wouldn’t be a homosexual character in that world.”

Tejano queen Selena to finally receive star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame

** FILE ** Selena performs at Hemisfair Plaza in San Antonio, TX, April 24, 1994. Photo by Sung Park / The Austin American-Statesman. ORG XMIT:
Selena performs at Hemisfair Plaza in San Antonio, TX, April 24, 1994. Photo by Sung Park / The Austin American-Statesman

Twenty-one years after her death, our “Queen of Tejano” will finally get her place on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.

The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announced Tuesday the Walk of Fame Class of 2017, which includes honorees from film, television, music, radio and live theater. You can read the full list here. 

Texas-born Selena Quintanilla, who would have celebrated her 45th birthday in April, is one of 34 new honorees who will be recognized next year. Not only was Quintanilla a Mexican-American singer, she was also a fashion designer and major pop culture icon.

Quintanilla was just 23 when her former fan club president Yolanda Saldivar fatally shot her in Corpus Christi on March 31, 1995. For many fans like the American-Statesman’s Nancy Flores, “the memory of hearing this news resonates as much as the moment when President John F. Kennedy was shot did for an older generation.”

Here’s how people on social media are celebrating the news:


That powerful theme from the ‘Game of Thrones’ finale is now on Spotify

Photo credit HBO

Don’t worry. There are no spoilers here.

If you watched Sunday night’s “Game of Thrones” season six finale “The Winds of Winter,” then you might remember the dramatic opening sequence. Director Miguel Sapochnik took 20 minutes to create a version of the famous baptism montage from “The Godfather,” as a characters settled in their place while Ramin Djawadi’s haunting composition played in the backdrop.

Well “GoT” fans, the track “Light of the Seven” is now available on Spotify and YouTube. With the season over, there’s at least this to help you through your time of mourning — or maybe it’ll make you cry some more. Even if you haven’t caught up to “GoT,” this piano-heavy track will make you feel like you’re right in the heart of Westeros.

Here’s a playlist of all of Djawadi’s music for “GoT” season six.


Meet Harry Styles’ teenage Texas doppelgänger

Photo credit AP

One of our very own fellow Texans shares an uncanny resemblance to One Direction’s Harry Styles — he’s just missing a British accent, is 15 years old and goes by the name Bailey Davila.

Though many news outlets are reporting that Davila is a student from Texas, we’re not sure which city he hails from. Either way, it’s hard to argue that this kid doesn’t look at least a bit like the singer. Just take a look at these photos of Davila next to those of Styles.

But according to an interview with This Morning, a talk-show in the U.K., Davila said he doesn’t try to emulate Styles. Live-streaming from Houston, he said he’s not really a fan of One Direction but is learning to play guitar and likes to write music.

“I’m more into that punk-rock style,” he said. “Not so much that One Direction.”




There’s a new verb in Mexico and it’s thanks to Donald Trump

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Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks in New York, Wednesday, June 22, 2016. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Word on the street is Mexico’s got a new word and it’s more than just a little Donald Trump-inspired. Can you say “Trumpear?”

No, no, not “trompear” which means “to hit” or “to punch” — “Trumpear” is a bit more complicated than that.

According to The New York Times, “Trumpear” is one of many ways the people of Mexico have expressed their anti-Trump sentiments, which sparked around the same time Trump began his campaign. The backlash comes after Trump’s naming Mexican immigrants as “rapists” and calling for a wall between the U.S.-Mexico border.

“Trumpear” has been said to mean a number of different things. The Times cites one Mexican reporter who suggested on Twitter that the word means “to hit, to vilify, to polarize, to revile, to terrorize as an electoral strategy.”

Another meaning comes from a technology businessman wrote that it meant “to do the ridiculous then contradict yourself afterwards.”

To read more about how Mexicans are expressing themselves, read the full article here.




‘The Daily Show’ angers Twitter with SCOTUS abortion tweet

Many people took to Twitter Monday morning to celebrate the Supreme Court’s 5-3 ruling on Texas abortion regulations.

But whoever runs the Twitter account for “The Daily Show” got a little bit carried away, and not in a good way.

In this Sept. 25, 2015 image taken from video, Trevor Noah appears on the set of his new show, "The Daily Show with Trevor Noah," in New York. Noah takes over for Jon Stewart on Monday. (AP Photo)
In this Sept. 25, 2015 image taken from video, Trevor Noah appears on the set of his new show, “The Daily Show with Trevor Noah,” in New York. (AP Photo)

A little after 2 p.m. Monday, a tweet sent from the @TheDailyShow account read:

“Celebrate the ruling! Go knock someone up in Texas!”

Needless to say, the tweet was a big no-no for many people, including “The Wire” creator David Simon, who compared the joke to a terrible non-alcoholic beer:


Memes and GIFs slid into the account’s mentions in no time.

For some people, the tweet made them miss former hosts of the show even more.

Others didn’t see why the joke was such a big deal.


“The Daily Show” made amends a little more than an hour later with this tweet:


Whataburger’s Sweet and Spicy Bacon Burger is back


It’s an exciting time to be alive if you’re a Whataburger lover — the Sweet & Spicy Bacon Burger is back.

The fast-food restaurant announced Monday that at 3 p.m. the burger would be available once again — but only for a limited time. The burger, which debuted last summer, is made up of  two beef patties, bacon, grilled onions, Monterey Jack and American cheese, Whataburger’s Original Mustard and its Sweet & Spicy Pepper Sauce.

It’s unknown how long the burger will be available but people are already going crazy on Twitter.


Texas researchers take on 1,000-plus-pound ‘Monster Makos’ for ‘Shark Week’ tonight

Photo via WikiCommons.

One of the best weeks of the year has returned — we’re talking “Shark Week.” But Texans are in for a special treat this year as Discovery Channel’s summer television event begins tonight, featuring Texas researchers in “Return of Monster Mako.”

The team hails from the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi. “Return of Monster Mako” will air at 8 p.m. and is a sequel to last year’s “Monster Mako,” which drew 3.265 million viewers — the highest ratings of the night.

According to TAMU-Corpus Christi’s news release, the shark experts set out on a seven-day expedition to tag and study the over 1,000-pound Mako sharks that feed off the Southern California coast.

Read the full news release here and places to celebrate “Shark Week” in Austin here.

Rory Gilmore and Michelle Obama talk books, LitWorld, Pop-Tarts

Photo via Gilmore Girls/Facebook.

When the original series of “Gilmore Girls” ended in 2007, everyone’s favorite bookworm Rory Gilmore was on her way to follow Barack Obama’s campaign as a political reporter.

Fast-forward nine years and “Gilmore Girls” fans are excitedly waiting for the Netflix four-episode revival titled “Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life.” Though we know the series will premiere in the fall, no exact air date has been released, leaving fans desperate for any look into the “Gilmore Girls” world — including a recently released two-minute clip of Rory stopping by Michelle Obama’s office.

Rory begins by bringing in a pile of books to keep FLOTUS entertained on her trip to Liberia, Morocco and Spain for her Let Girls Learn initiative. In classic Rory fashion, she suggests “a little Proust,” “Moby Dick” and “Anna Karenina.” And though Lorelai is nowhere to be seen, she left Rory with a gift for Obama — a box of blueberry Pop-Tarts.

Study: House Lannister would rule Austin if ‘Game of Thrones’ was real

Photo via “Game of Thrones.”

We’ve all wished at some point that “Game of Thrones” was more than just a fictional world. And every Sunday, no matter how many times you have to remind yourself it’s not real, you know exactly which house you’d pledge your allegiance to.

But if you’re from Austin and you’re not ready to be ruled by House Lannister, you may need to reconsider — at least, according to a study done by FindTheHome.

The real estate database used its data to see where the “GoT” characters would live if Westeros was the United States. They separated the country into seven groups: House Greyjoy, House Lannister, House Baratheon, House Targaryen, House Tyrell, House Stark and Night’s Watch.

It then created demographic, geographic and industry data for each group based off their characteristics on the show. FindTheHome then matched that data with that of regions in the U.S.

The site found that Austin, or Travis County, falls most strongly under House Lannister. But much of Texas would be ruled by House Baratheon and sprinkled with House Taragaryen.

Folks over at Thrillist created their own list of which characters would best fit each state in the U.S. It may not come as a surprise that they chose a Lannister for our great state — but at least she’s tough. Cersei would be Thrillist’s choice, complete with this little blurb:

Aesthetically pleasing debutante, comes from a ton of money. Can be hateful, and you don’t want to mess with her, but also pretty great if you’re on her side. Has no problem going it alone.