Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Vote Now! The 2017 Miserable Crank Awards: Day Three

Here are the candidates for day three of voting for the Miserable Crank Awards of 2016. Don't forget to vote on the Day One Categories and the Day Two Categories!

Emoji Movie
It's a fun movie for the kids, I'm sure they will say. It ain't hurting anyone, others will claim. But just as previous badly-conceived movies that kids absolutely adore and as such will confirm their continued existence and expansion, the Emoji Movie--the plot of which involves...well, hell, no one cares--was enough of a success that the characters will be sure to grace the walls of your older relative's Facebook pages for years to come.

Fyre Festival
A music festival held in the Bahamas by rapper Ja Rule, the Fyre Festival quickly became an unmitigated catastrophe. Poor planning and a failure to address serious logistical issues led to a flurry of social media disasters. Tents replaced luxury hotel rooms. Prepackaged sandwiches replaced gourmet meals. For an expensive destination event--tickets started at $1500 for one day of the four-day festival--people were greeted to wet mattresses and bare-bones staff. The entire thing was cancelled after the initial wave of attendees, and the founders are currently undergoing multiple lawsuits and criminal proceedings.

Oscar Best Picture Announcement
One of the more awkward things to come out of Hollywood (actually, on second thought, scratch that), the 2017 Best Picture announcement during the Academy Awards show fell apart. The presenters--Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway--went to read the announcement, only to realize much too late that they were given the wrong envelope. In the confusion (we're being charitable, here) the wrong nominee--La La Land--was announced, instead of the actual winner, Moonlight.

Mariah Carey's New Years' Performance
Ringing in the new year is always a stressful time for many--it's a situation that must be done live and relies on a lot of good timing. Unfortunately, problems happen, and one big problem was Mariah Carey. When the music began she quickly motions that the sound wasn't working, but as the music continued and the dancers never stopped, she simply gave up, not even bothering to mouth along with the lip sync. While it's almost certainly not her fault--the sound engineering was clearly off--it was an awkward performance to say the least.

Look What You Made Me Do
Taylor Swift is one of the hottest stars right now, so it's usually notable when there's a misfire. While fans will certainly be very forgiving, and even the critics, it's hard to work up a lot of love for her latest single, Look What You Made Me Do. The clumsy lyrics, meta-references, and stylistic change turned a lot of people off, and while some of it is a well-deserved break from her standard formula, most simply see it as a letdown. 

Harvey Weinstein
It's sort of difficult to pick exactly who we want to represent the monsters who are in Hollywood. The big secret everyone already knows--that most people in Tinseltown are amoral, soulless monsters--finally came to light when accusations against high-powered producer Harvey Weinstein finally stuck. Afterwards, when everyone in Hollywood pretended to be shocked, shocked at his behavior, a cascade of sexual predation started to be released, exposing a lot of things people really pretended to not know.

Donald Trump
Sure, it's an easy target, but it's not like Trump seems to care. There's an entire list of garbage we could list here--and even if you approach it from a cold nonpartisan lens, there's still plenty of material. Whether it be his handling of his twitter account, or calling foreign heads of state, or his dealings with the day-to-day operations of running the office, he's found an alarmingly public way of doing everything in the worst way possible. (Or the most refreshing way possible, depending on how many Cracker Barrels are in your county.)

Roy Moore
Most people outside of Alabama either don't know Moore, or vaguely know him as the Guy Who Really Loves Stone Depictions Of The Ten Commandments. Now, everyone knows him for something else--liking little girls. Since he is running for Senate, the immediate defense of his approaching 14 year old girls by his base--which in Alabama is embarrassingly large--is nothing short of sickening. While the general wave of allegations have hit more than Moore (notably Senator Al Franken) not are at the same level of hypocritical depravity.

Steve Bannon
The senior counselor and mastermind behind the Trump White House, Bannon, whose existence has been dogged with white supremacy, misogyny, and tone-deafness, acted as a lightning rod for criticism in the presidency. While he tended to keep quiet and make few public statements, his influence behind the scenes could be felt everywhere--right up to the point where he was dismissed.

Ajit Pai
The current chairman of the FCC, Pai is spearheading the assault on Net Neutrality. While it's been a hot topic for years, for the first time it appears as if the repeal may go through. He's also fostered a lot of ocntroversy surrounding the issue, since a lot of the public comments appear to be illegitimate, and his agency is coming off very tone-deaf to the criticism. 

Travel Ban
President Trump, looking to fulfill one of his many promises during the campaign, announced a travel ban from about a dozen countries very early in his administration. However, he had apparently failed to notify...well, anyone who should know, to the point where cabinet departments were discussing the pros and cons only to look at the TV and see that it was decided. The ban itself was also implemented poorly, with individuals having no idea if they could return to the US on temporary visas.

Chris Christie Bans The Beach
When the Governor of New Jersey and the state legislature were unable to come to a budget agreement, the state shut down. The nonessential services, anyway. Nonessential services include things like beaches--well, unless you are the governor himself, who was photographed on a near-empty beach, enjoying the things that the taxpayers explicitly couldn't. It would have been literally the worst optics ever for a politician, except for that one time Christie stood behind Trump, endorsing him, with a face like he just sold his soul, which he did.

Residents of a certain southern California community were a little shocked to wake up and find that the iconic "Hollywood" sign had a different kind of message. Changing the name to "Hollyweed" on New Year's Day, possibly as a dedication to the new marijuana laws that had taken effect in California. Or possibly some stoners got high and were somehow coordinated enough to pull it off.

Solar Eclipse
For the first time in nearly a century, a total eclipse of the sun was visible throughout a large portion of the United States. While partial ones are relatively common, this one ran the length of the nation. Millions of people prepared for the day, buying special please-don't-go-blind glasses, making their own out of cereal boxes and (one assumes) crossed fingers, and scheduled convenient lunch breaks at work.

A Million Little Streaming Services
For a few years now it has been apparent that streaming services will be the future of media consumption, in one way or another. And for years that market has been dominated by a few players--Netflix, Amazon, and if you squint really hard on a warm summer day, Hulu. The trend, however, has turned into each media conglomerate to break off and form their own streaming service, meaning that the average individual will have to subscribe to not one or two but dozens of different services to get the same content. While it is somewhat understandable from the owner of the product, for the end user it's looking a lot like the cable services they just ditched.

[Voting is now closed.]

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