Serial Podcast Link Roundup

Serial has become an internet phenomenon since it was released earlier this fall. As a fan of the podcast since the beginning, it’s been hard for me not to share my opinions about the case. I’ve decided to provide my own sort of masterpost of links that I’ve found related to different aspects of the case. Some of these sources were linked up on Reddit, while others I discovered while searching on Google.

Stories about Jay:

Reddit pretty much exploded when The Intercept posted the first interview with Jay, the key witness who’s testimony was the only evidence that put Adnan behind bars for life. Note: Part two should be posted later on today which I will add to the list.

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/12/29/exclusive-interview-jay-wilds-star-witness-adnan-syed-serial-case-pt-1/

http://gawker.com/jay-from-serial-speaks-gives-new-timeline-of-hae-min-l-1676148300

http://m.dailytelegraph.com.au/entertainment/serial-podcast-witness-jay-wilds-breaks-silence-youve-got-to-help-me-or-im-going-to-tell-the-cops-about-you/story-fni0b7jg-1227170153928

http://www.esquire.com/blogs/culture/things-we-learned-serial-jay-interview

http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2015/01/01/jay_from_serial_interview_in_the_intercept_part_3_wilds_discusses_reddit.html

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/12/30/exclusive-jay-part-2/

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/12/31/jay-speaks-part-3/

http://observer.com/2014/12/heres-how-the-intercept-landed-serials-star-witness-for-his-first-interview/

http://mashable.com/2015/01/01/jay-serial-stories/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link

Parodies:

http://entertainthis.usatoday.com/2014/12/23/serial-parody/

http://reductress.com/post/after-serial-police-departments-replace-staff-with-female-npr-hosts/

Law Blogs- Provides well researched and credible information from sources that know what they are talking about in terms of the law aspect of the case.

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2014/12/ive-posted-24-entriessarah-koenigsserial-podcast-which-deals-withthe-1999-prosecution-of-17-year-old-adnan-syed-for-murderin.html

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2014/12/ive-posted-25-entriessarah-koenigsserial-podcast-which-deals-withthe-1999-prosecution-of-17-year-old-adnan-syed-for-murderin.html

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/evidenceprof/2015/01/the-serial-podcast-what-if-neither-of-them-did-it-marylands-new-dna-standard.html

http://www.lawblogs.net/go/law-practice-management-lessons-learned-from-serials-m-cristina-gutierrez

http://viewfromll2.com/2014/12/29/serial-the-maryland-court-of-special-appeals-unpublished-decision-denying-adnans-appeal-in-2003/

Hae Min Lee

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1999-03-12/news/9903120122_1_min-lee-lacrosse-woodlawn

http://flavorwire.com/493304/what-do-we-really-know-about-hae-min-lee-serials-beautiful-dead-korean-girl

http://www.dailydot.com/geek/serial-hae-min-lee-scholarship-fund/

http://vagendamagazine.com/2014/12/it-starts-with-a-body-why-its-important-to-keep-questioning-the-serial-podcast/

http://www.shakesville.com/2014/12/serial.html

http://thinkprogress.org/culture/2014/11/20/3595208/the-ethics-of-serial/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11304281/Serial-podcast-How-a-schoolgirls-murder-became-entertainment.html

http://obviweretheladies.com/2014/12/19/we-shouldnt-forget-the-truth-about-serial/

Adnan Syed

http://mashable.com/2014/12/01/adnan-syed-appeal-serial/

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1999-03-01/news/9903010074_1_min-lee-young-lee-woodlawn

https://pdf.yt/d/PUUcby-AZWfEhcuW

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/jan/01/serial-adnan-syed-exonerated-new-trial

http://m.usmagazine.com/entertainment/news/adnan-syed-convict-featured-in-serial-podcast-getting-appeal-case-2014312

Rabia Chaudry – family friend who first brought the case to Sarah Koenig.

She keeps the blog “Split The Moon” where she frequently blogs about Adnan and his case. It’d be difficult to list all of them, I just listed several that provide a lot of interesting information.

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/crime/blog/bs-md-syed-murder-case-20141010-story.html#page=2

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/splitthemoon/2014/10/life-plus-30-murder-lies-the-anatomy-of-a-wrongful-conviction/

http://www.splitthemoon.com/where-it-all-began/#more-311

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/splitthemoon/2014/10/not-totally-loosey-goosey/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/24/rabia-chaudry-serial_n_6377442.html

Sarah Koenig

http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/features/sarah-koenig-on-serial-20141024?page=3

http://www.vulture.com/2014/10/serials-sarah-koenig-on-her-hit-podcast.html

http://time.com/3541264/serial-this-american-life-sarah-koenig/

http://www.npr.org/blogs/monkeysee/2014/12/18/371636304/sarah-koenig-on-serial-i-think-something-went-wrong-with-this-case

There’s tons and tons more I could post but I decided to stay away from the specific evidence that was in the case. These are just some articles that example the general aspect of the case and the hype surrounding the podcast itself. This will be updated some, let me know if I’ve left any imperative links off.

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Best Boyfriends – Gilmore Girls Edition

So I’ve decided to take the best boyfriends/girlfriends on some of my favorite shows. Mostly, I plan on it being an ensemble cast where I talk about the character they ended up with and whether that was a right decision or not. Hopefully it’ll play out better than it currently sounds. But with one of my favorite shows Gilmore Girls, it was hard to highlight the whole cast. There’s a lot of great characters and I feel like the majority end up with the people you thought all along. I was always most interested in the boyfriends of Rory Gilmore. She had three serious relationships with three very attractive males. The order I’ve listed them is just chronologically, but I will discuss which she should’ve ended up with.

Dean Forrester

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Dean was Rory’s first boyfriend on the show. He was the kid with nice hair who had just moved from Chicago to the school Rory left shortly after the series began. Dean watched Rory read day after day and they eventually ended up getting closer. They shared their first kiss in the market where he worked. Dean was a sweet character but he eventually annoyed me. He was loyal to Rory but they were extremely on and off throughout the series. Stuff always got in the way of their relationship, as it often does but this was serious unforgivable stuff. Not to mention, Rory lost her virginity to Dean while he was still married. I’d say by the time that went down on the show, it was obvious it was time for Dean to get lost. He was a character that should’ve only been around until season 3. That’s the storyline he should be remembered for, not the way he ended up which was as the guy that cheated on his wife with his ex girlfriend.

Jess Mariano

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Jess is definitely the one out of the three that I would’ve went for. The guy has great taste in books plus he can keep up with Rory’s constant pop culture references which isn’t an easy task. Sure, he’s a bad boy. But he’s the one of the bunch who ended up in a fairly stable position and Rory messed him over. He left her many times when he should’ve told her how he really felt. Rory ultimately needed a guy that would be there for her – which sadly, wasn’t in Jess’s nature. I think this was a beautiful relationship while it lasted and it’s one that Rory needed to experience. He broke her heart by bailing and she truly loved him.

Logan Huntzberger

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Logan is a character that annoyed me a lot in the beginning. However, I do think he really cared about Rory. He couldn’t help what family he belongs to, but he could’ve been more grateful. Instead he was a spoiled white boy who never really had to work at anything and we never really saw him work hard for anything while he was on the show. It was a rather safe choice for her since he came from a nice family and her grandparents worshiped him simply due to his last name. Logan really grew up as his relationship with Rory became more serious. It was wrong of him to blindside her by popping the question at her Yale graduation party her grandparents threw. All in all, he was a fun and different character that was a good match for Rory.

Who Rory ended up with: No one. At the end of the series, Rory turns down Logan’s proposal in order to focus on her career instead of moving away to be with him. It was a fitting decision for her, she was always meant to be a career woman first.

Who she should’ve ended up with: Well, Rory and Logan should’ve ended things long before the proposal. I think she should’ve chose Jess the second she went to visit his bookstore and saw how well he was doing. He had his life in order and Rory should’ve ended up with him somehow. I get why she didn’t end up with him but I still think he was the all around best of the boyfriends.

Best Sex and the City Characters

Sex and the City is a show much loved due to it’s strong central friendship group: four single New York women who are navigating through their mid-30s and 40s together. I felt that it’s only fair for this post to be dedicated to the four main characters listed from worst to best in terms of who I’d want to be friends with. Each woman has their own respective qualities that anyone would love to find in a best friend, but this is a list that’s strictly my personal opinion based on what friends I want to have.

4. Charlotte York

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Charlotte is the practical and rather uptight one of the group. Her most positive quality is definitely how optimistic she is about love and her future. She never gives up hope on finding her Prince Charming. As far as a friend goes, constantly looking on the bright side of life while you’re going through breakup after breakup can get annoying. She also can be extremely judgmental at times and a little too on the proper side.

3. Carrie Bradshaw

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Sex and the City is Carrie’s story since she narrates it through her columns. She has a fabulous life filled with lots of beautiful shoes and general glamorous life. But Carrie can be selfish and only focus on her problems. She’s there for her friends when they need her but she constantly puts them in awkward positions in her love life then turns around and judges them. She’s a flawed character which is much like women are in real life which is nice and rare to see on TV shows. I just wouldn’t care to have her as a friend.

2. Miranda Hobbes

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Miranda is smart and funny but more than that, she’s a great friend to her girls. I found her kind of annoying and whiny in the first few seasons but she eventually evolves into a more likable character. She also gains wisdom and understanding once she becomes a mom. While Charlotte is overly optimistic, Miranda is too pessimistic at times. This attitude is the only reason why she didn’t score the number one spot on this list.

1. Samantha Jones

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I’d want to be friends with Samantha the most out of all the SATC girls because who wouldn’t? Samantha is confident, classy, blunt, loyal, and fun. She’s neither too optimistic or too pessimistic, she’s just right. She always has her hilarious Samantha Jonesisms regardless of the topic at hand. Another good quality of hers is that she’ll never judge you. She stands by Carrie’s side when Carrie goes to only her about her affair with a married Mr. Big. She doesn’t gossip about it to the other girls or scold Carrie, instead she offers support and comfort to her friend. Having a friend like Samantha is ideal because she’s fun and a loyal friend.

Christmas Movie Characters

One of the best things about Christmas movies to keep in mind as you watch some holiday favorites with your family is the charming characters. From the smart to the silly, these characters are all different types of heroes in their own personal ways. Charming and endearing, these are some characters that have stuck with me as I’ve watched these Christmas movies growing up. Hopefully you’ll have the same reaction as mine.

Buddy The Elf from Elf

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He’s extremely lovable and always happy. He’s love and adoration for Christmas is altogether contagious to say the least. The joy and belief that he has in the holiday is precious and charming. It’s pretty much impossible not to love this character and his spirit.

Clark Griswold from Christmas Vacation

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He always looks on the bright side, maybe to a fault at times. He does what he can for his family. His antics that he finds himself in are entertaining and never get old no matter how many times you’ve seen this movie. He’s a hilarious dad that would definitely be fun to be around.

Ralphie from A Christmas Story

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Let’s be real, Ralphie is a major dork. But he’s a dreamer who knows what he wants, even if what he wants isn’t always the smartest thing for him. He’s just a kid finding his way and it’s endearing to be able to watch him grow up within this movie as he navigates through his life.

The Grinch from How the Grinch Stole Christmas

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He’s obviously not meant to be a sweet and lovely character. But after seeing everything that the Grinch had to endure as a young boy, you get an idea of why he acts the way he does. He’s been bullied and knocked down many times in life. But the cool thing about this movie is watching him and his heart grow bigger and bigger. He tries to be a mean evil guy, but at the end of the day he’s just a caring and loving guy that you can’t help but love.

Kevin from Home Alone

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Kevin is a little brat at the beginning of this movie. But once he wakes up and his family is gone, he thinks they left him on purpose. This made him appreciate his family more, especially considering the things he had to deal with when home alone. He was brave and faced the robbers head on which is a lot more than I would’ve done if it was me in his shoes. He’s a clever kid who knows that he must protect his house and think on his feet even if he’s scared.

George Bailey from It’s A Wonderful Life

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I’ve already dedicated an entire post to this movie here recently. But any Christmas character list would be incomplete with him missing from it. So basically, George Bailey is the perfect fictional character because he always puts other people before himself. He gave up his chance to see the world in order to remain in his boring little town to run his fathers business. He’s a caring guy who loses some faith in the movie but he always always finds his way in the end.

The Voice Finale Predictions

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Last night on The Voice, the four finalists sang three songs each: a song picked by their coach, their first original song picked by their coach, and a duet with their coach. This made Adam a busy man considering three out of the four finalists are on his team. This season has arguably been the most competitive and has had the best singers yet. These are my rankings of each performance by the categories and each will end with who I believe the winner of that round is and my prediction for who will win the competition.

The first round I’m going to touch on is the artist singing a duet with their coach.
Ranked from worst to best:
4. Craig Wayne Boyd and Blake Shelton

The duo obviously had fun onstage with a country song they both feel comfortable with and thoroughly enjoy. But I felt as if it didn’t showcase either voices enough. The music was pretty loud and it was difficult to hear them actually sing.

3. Matt McAndrew and Adam Levine

Matt could make any song sound good. He’s tremendously talented and Adam obviously loves and respects him as an artist. But it definitely put me off that Adam chose to sing a song from Begin Again, a movie that he was in. It just seemed narcissistic to me.

2. Chris Jamison and Adam Levine

Robin Thicke’s “Lost Without U” was fitting for both of the guys upper register. They both did a really nice job with harmonizing even though I’m sure that wasn’t easy to do since they have practically identical voices.

1. Damien and Adam Levine

Elton John’s classic song, “Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me” was an amazing choice for Damien. It was great for Adam’s voice as well but most importantly, it gave Damien the opportunity to shine which is what the song should be doing. None of the other artists did this as well as Damien.

Round one goes to: Damien

Round Two: Cover Songs
4. Damien singing “A Song For You”

This is a beautiful song but it felt too safe for Damien. It felt a little karaoke to me which is an extremely rare side of Damien.

3. Matt singing “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”

This is such a classic song but I’m not sure it was right for Matt. It was too high for him and they didn’t change the pitch of it. The song started out gentle and beautiful but the ending note was just clearly off pitch. My dad and I were both prepared to declare Matt the winner but that final note set us back.

2. Craig Wayne Boyd, “In Pictures”

I didn’t know either popular songs that Craig sang last night. But I knew that this was a good song for him as an artist. The sentimental value for him was very present. And him simply sitting down and singing the words out gave it that much more meaning which I really respected and hope to see more of from him.

1. Chris Jamison, “Cry Me A River”

I wasn’t sure what to think when I found out he was taking on JT. I was pleasantly pleased with his take on Justin though. I think Chris did the best this round because it was the closest to what kind of artist he wants to represent. Of course, it’s not a good idea to try to BE Justin Timberlake but it’s up to Chris to make his unique artistry that sets him apart. I was impressed with his vocals alone, his voice can often be forgotten when he works the crowd and moves around but his voice is very much there.

Round goes to: Chris Jamison

Round Three: Original Songs
4. My Baby’s Got A Smile On Her Face by Craig Wayne Boyd

I’m not a big country fan, every country song I love is because it tells a story. I love when Craig sings the classic songs like Johnny Cash’s “Walk The Line” he completely rearranged it and made it his own. I just feel like this song has zero substance. Blake made it known in the video footage that this is a song that he’s had in his back pocket for years but I think he’s had it in his back pocket for a reason.

3. Velvet by Chris Jamison

This article, especially the part that touches on Chris’s original song is hilariously accurate. “Weren’t we just singing about Jesus last week?” It made me uncomfortable to hear the words, “She rides like a dream and damn that velvet looks good on me” on live TV. Like is that even socially acceptable? I love Chris and he’s definitely got sex appeal but his take on “When I Was Your Man” last week is more of what I want to see from him. A song that showcases his beautiful voice.

2. Damien, “Soldier”

This Max Martin produced song was the perfect fit for Damien. I don’t think Damien is going to win it but I think this was an inspirational song that was one of the most fitting in terms of his voice and just being able to have a quality moment when he needs it the most.

1. Matt McAndrew, “Wasted Love”

I had a feeling going into the show that Matt’s song would be the strongest. This is because Matt is arguably the most original artist out of the finalists. He’s an artist because he’s written many songs and even when he covers songs, he puts his own spin on things. This was The Voice’s version of when Phillip Phillips was lucky enough to be given the original song “Home” on American Idol which ultimately helped him win the competition. I think this could happen to Matt.

Round Goes To: Matt

Predicted Winner: Matt
It’s a little unfair that Matt already has an album out and has been performing for awhile. The same goes for Craig and maybe Damien a little bit too. Chris should be the winner based on the less experience of all the finalists. But it’s not about that, this show has helped Matt form connections that could give him the big break he’s been looking for. I also think he’s been the most consistent contestant this season and I really hope he becomes successful.

10 Reasons Why It’s A Wonderful Life is The Best Christmas Movie

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There are many memorable Christmas movies that have been released in the last 20 years or so that have become classics. However, none of these movies compare to one of the oldest Christmas movies of all, It’s A Wonderful Life. It wasn’t extremely popular at the box offices when it was first released. Now, it’s known for it’s timeless and sentimental values behind it. Not that you need them, but here’s ten reasons why this is the best Christmas movie of all time.

1. Jimmy Stewart is a timeless actor
He was one of the most well known actors back in his time and with good reason. He made an impact with every single role he played and touched the hearts of movie goers everywhere.

2. The plot itself is relevant
This is a plot that wasn’t commonly seen in movies when it was released so audiences didn’t know what to make of it. Now, the concept of characters that can’t find any meaning in their life get the chance to see what the world would be like if they were never born has been seen in countless TV shows and some movies as well.

3. The love story never gets old

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Mary and George had a beautiful love story in this movie. “What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down. Hey. That’s a pretty good idea. I’ll give you the moon, Mary.” One of the most romantic movie quotes ever and the rest of their love story followed with a tale of unconditional love between the two.

4. Clarence the Angel
The innocence and naive ways of Clarence are heartwarming and endearing. Homeboy really wants his wings.

5. Poor Uncle Billy
You have to feel bad for George’s space case Uncle Billy. He’s always losing something but he has the best of intentions which makes him a sweet and important character.

6. The scene between young George and Mary
When young Mary whispers in George’s ear that he can’t hear in that she’ll love him until the day she dies makes my heart melt everytime.

7. Little Zuzu and all the other kids
Zuzu is obviously the cutest but the youngest and dorkiest little boy is precious as well.

8. When George attacks Mary’s face
The kisses the two share are intense for the time period.

9. When George stood up to Potter
Throughout the movie, George always stayed true to his beliefs instead of going the easy way out and becoming rich by accepting Potter’s offers. Instead, he honored the values his father upheld while he was still living.

10. The moment he realizes he’s back to being himself again
The pure joy on his face when his friend Bert comes up to him on the bridge and calls him by name, the expression on his face is priceless. He lights up and becomes a brand new person. It makes me cry everytime when he gets genuinely excited over the fact that his mouth is bleeding.

The point is, this is a movie that you don’t want to miss. I guarantee that this will get you more into the Christmas spirit. It’s truly impossible to not be touched by this film.