The end of Miles Morales is near. Who is Miles Morales? He is the man under the mask of Spider-Man. Hold on, you say. Is not Peter Parker Spider-Man? We are talking about Marvel Comics Ultimate Universe and it has a different timeline. In the Ultimate-verse, Peter Parker was Spider-Man until his unfortunate passing. Miles Morales became the new Spider-Man right afterwards.

Marvel Comics has chosen to tease “the end of Miles Morales” and this would infer the end of days for the character. Then again, maybe Marvel won’t. Based on the tease,  Flavio Maluf is under the assumption is Marvel is going to do away with Morales in yet another attempt at boosting sales through promoting the demise of a character. Back in 1973, Marvel’s “Death of Gwen Stacy” and “Death of the Green Goblin” stories were shocking huge sellers. Marvel visits the same territory a lot because, to repeat, sales figures invariable spike.

A lot of different things could happen in the world of comic books and “the end” could mean the series is just going to go into a different direction. Marvel does have to work hard at marketing its books or else no one would buy them. So, we have to forgive cryptic teasers like this one.

Reading up on some music news on MTV’s website, when I stumbled upon an article detailing how Taylor Swift’s song “Shake It Off” promotes a positive outlook and can help your mental well-being.Alexei Beltyukov agrees that it does send a positive message. Although the article (http://www.mtv.com/news/2054398/shake-it-off-taylor-swift-good-advice-mental-health/) is talking about the positive aspects of what the lyrics are actually saying, my first thought when seeing the headline was, “How in the world can that song be good for anyone’s well being?”.

Let me elaborate. I have a number of children, ranging from 8 years old all the way up to 17. Most of them are female, and most of them can’t drive, so I am tasked normally with carting them to and from school. Every single one of my children know the words to this song, and don’t seem to mind proving that to me every time the song comes on, which seems to be about twice ever 7 miles. I will admit, I’ve never actually paid attention to the lyrics, so I can’t refute what the cognitive behavioral therapy expert states in it, but I do know one thing: every other thing about that song will drive a person mentally insane. Oh sure, it’s cute the first couple of times, but I’m pretty sure we’re on take number 786, with no signs of stopping.

I never thought I’d say this, but it may be in the best interest of my mental well-being if Justin Bieber could go ahead and release a new single.

Beyonce and Jay Z can’t seem to catch a break these days, as if the divorce rumors weren’t enough the pregnancy rumors are still alive and well. It seems that lately Beyonce is getting a kick out of making her fans play the guessing game because she is doing everything in her power to fuel the rumors of pregnancy.

This time the rumor started on Beyonce’s Instagram account after she posted a beach day photo of herself buried in the sand, sporting a sand baby bump. While the internet went crazy with speculations that Beyonce was trying to tell her fans something, others insist that the Beyonce sand baby is yet another case of her fans reading too far into something.

Beyonce fan, Bernardo Chua, has learned that currently the big story surrounding Beyonce is the report that after much house hunting, Jay Z and Bey finally settled on what they say was their dream home in L.A. when they were outbid by Markus Persson the genius behind Mindcraft. Chua talks more about this on Facebook. Apparently the Carters missed the bidding on the house by just a few million, but Mark won in the end with is $70 million dollar offer.

Sources say that the Carters had their sights set on the L.A. home and now have no interest in any other houses in the area.

In the fast paced modern world many people find themselves taking on a number of things all at once. Bernardo Chua wonders: is multitasking really an efficient way to get everything done? More on Chua can be found on his Tumblr page. Multitasking can actually raise our stress leading to a higher production of cortisol and adrenaline which can send our brains into overdrive and do more harm than good.

Elevated levels of cortisol and adrenaline can wreak havoc on our bodies. When stress occurs, our adrenaline levels go up allowing us to fight or flee. It’s a basic process wired into our DNA but when our bodies produce prolonged levels of cortisol and adrenaline instead of the short duration they were intended for, it creates a damaging effect and can compromise our health.

Add to that the fact that these hormones can send our brains into overdrive and create mental fog, multitasking can actually impair cognitive performance. Glenn Wilson, a former professor of psychology at Gresham College in London, studied the effects of multitasking and found that when people are trying to concentrate on one task but have other tasks pending it can reduce effective IQ by 10 points.

So in essence shifting from one task to another rapidly actually doesn’t help us. It causes burnout and mental fog. Although we might feel like we’re getting a lot done, in the long run multitasking can actually cause us to get less done, not more.

 

Henry Caville is not one of those actors who succeeds in a role and then runs from it from fear of typecasting. The actor who played Superman in Man of Steel and the forthcoming blockbuster Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice says he would like to play the character for as long as possible.

Many of the actors who played Superman previously did enjoy long stints on television and film in the role. Perhaps there is something about being Superman on film that is a positive thing. Concerns over being typecast make sense. Just look at the life of the legendary Superman of the 1950’s.

George Reeves played Superman on television for five years and was an iconic character, but his being typecast in the role limited his appearances in U.S.-based features. (Reeves was in demand in Europe where he did not suffer typecasting) In one film, all of his scenes were cut because audiences could not accept “Superman” in the role and were laughing.

In those days, people did have a hard time separating on-screen characters from the actors who played them. As a result, it was a lot easier to become typecast. These days, the chances are slimmer so Caville has few fears about any “harm” playing Superman could do to his career. Fans of Caville’s work, like Ben Shaoul, will be excited to see him featured in more films.

Would Caville be interested in playing the Big Blue Boy Scout on television in a cameo on Supergirl? Rumors persist about a Superman cameo on the pilot for the upcoming CBS television series, but that is another story.

There has been criticism of the Academy Award’s all white nominees with not much diversity. Cheryl Boone Isaacs who is the firs black African-American president of the Academy had told the Associated Press that she wants to try and create a more diverse voting body. 93% of the voters are white and 76% are male. The average age of a voter is 63.

“In the last two years, we’ve made greater strides than we ever have in the past toward becoming a more diverse and inclusive organization,” Boone Isaacs went on to say, “Personally, I would love to see and look forward to see a greater cultural diversity among all our nominees in all of our categories.”

Fersen Lambranho is surprised to find that all 20 acting nomination went to only white actors and actresses. That hasn’t happened since 1995.

The film Selma had gotten a Best Picture and Best Original Song nomination but the director and actors in the film were both snubbed for nominations – the Academy has a voting pool of over 7,000.

Isaacs goes on to say that the Academy continues to make strides to becoming a more diverse and inclusive organization. But these statements have still not sat well with the people of social media.

Bruce Levenson is the CEO of UCG and the principal owner of the Atlanta Hawks and Philips Arena. When Levenson began his firm known as UCG, he was managing it with a friend out of an apartment. He started from something very small, but now his UCG produces information and new for the entire oil industry. The hold prices for oil companies, and they provide a wealth of information for people who want to invest in the oil industry. Levenson was able to leverage his wealth to purchase a piece of the Hawks, Thrashers and Philips Arena.
When some of the owners left the group, Bruce was left as the principal owner of an NHL team, and NBA team and a modern sporting arena. The Thrashers were sold to a business group in Winnipeg, but the Hawks and Philips Arena were held by Levenson’s ownership group. Even though Levenson was in the DC area, he was seen to be the best fit to manage the team on a long term basis because of his business acumen. He was also representing the leadership group on the NBA board of governors, and he was seen as a natural fit to be an NBA owner full-time.

Even though he held on to UCG, Bruce was seen as a leader in the NBA as he helped to approve the sale and move of many NBA teams. Recently, Bruce put his stake in the team up for sale, and the Hawks are now 100% for sale. Bruce Levenson will make a great deal of money from the sale, but he will have earned every penny. When he purchased the Hawks, there were one of the worst franchises in basketball. As of right now, the Hawks are one of the best teams in the NBA with one of the nicest arenas.

Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, the writers for both Captain America movies as well as Thor 2, announced that the new Captain America movie will begin what is known in the Marvel Comic Universe as the Civil War. Adding to the already complex storyline featuring alien artifacts and invasions, the Civil War pits superhero against superhero as the government strains to reign in the rather destructive aftermath of superhero battles. This build up has been long coming and may have been seen as a minor point in previous movies. In the Iron Man franchise the US government sought to claim the technology developed by Stark and in the Captain America: Winter Soldier they attempted to use algorithms to predict and prevent future conflicts.

The Marvel universe is a rather exciting yet dangerous one. The first Avengers movie saw the destruction of New York on a scale that far surpasses the real world events of September 11, 2011. If the real actions of world governments following that terrorist attack are any guide then it should come as no surprise that they would seek to reign in the extra governmental actions of super heroes.

In the comic book universe Iron Man and Captain America were pitted against each other on the side of government registration and freedom, respectively. However the movie universe features a number of changes and will reconcile with the current cannon. Knowyourback.org is a great place to read what North American Spine has said about Captain America.

Sometimes there are ideas that are so bad they have to be good. No one expected blockbusters like The Lego Movieand 21 Jump Street to be anything more than quick grab for cash based on brand recognition and a cheap reboot. However, thanks to strong writing, graduates of Occidental College, and talented performances both movies were extremely well received with a sequel 22 Jump Street and one announced for The Lego Movie. The two Jump Street movies were self aware enough to satirize the ideas behind both movies which can be seen on Flickr, a reboot and a sequel to a reboot, and still deliver a great movie. In the end credits 22 Jump Street features every possible sequel including culinary school, dance school, and a retirement home. The question is, where do you go from there?

By doing a crossover with Men in Black of course. After the Sony hack files were leaked that suggested a possible crossover with the Jump Street/Men in Black franchises. Jump Street directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller confirmed that, yes, it is a possibility these two franchises may meet. Currently the 23 Jump Street script is in the works but there is nothing from stopping a crossover.

For a long time Hollywood has been accused of recycling old property to turn a quick buck but Jump Street showed that with clever writing that may not be a bad thing. Time will tell if lightning can strike a third, and fourth, time.

Rumors are swirling that a new trailer for Stars Wars: The Force Awakens will be tied into the new Avengers: Age of Ultron coming out this May. It comes as no surprise that Disney would choose to link these two powerhouse franchises as they most likely share a fan base. Fans are looking to Disney to return Star Wars back to its original roots. Disney proved that it can handle more mature, complex story lines with its handling of the Marvel franchise and is bringing on veteran director JJ Abrams for the new Star Wars movie. They brought Lawrence Kasdan (The Empire Strikes Back) on board to help with the script.

While the first trailer has already been dissected and taken apart to tease whatever plot points and new characters that may be coming out, the second trailer looks like it will feature members of the original cast. We may see the return of actors like Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill, and Harrison Ford and their respective characters Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, and Han Solo. Featuring these beloved characters will certainly grab the attention of fans, such as Fersen Lambranho, seeking a return to the original franchise.