The Class of 2020 Graduates w/ Oprah Winfrey
COVID-19 has been particularly rough on schoolkids. It might not seem that way if you take the most superficial of looks at the situation, i.e. "Hey, they don't have to go to school, I wish I didn't have to go to school, har har!" But not only have kids had their educations interrupted and their friends kept at a distance, but for the class of 2020, all that work they put in was in danger of being unrewarded, or rewarded sorta poorly (if many "virtual" ceremonies are anything to go by). ENTER OPRAH. Effectively taking over all of Facebook (starting at 8 am, so get your kid up early), Oprah will deliver a commencement speech to the graduating class of 2020, before turning the stage over to other stars with their own inspirational speeches and performances, including Awkwafina, Jennifer Garner, Lil Nas X, Simone Biles, and Miley Cyrus. Will Oprah figure out a way to hide the keys to a new car under your teen's seat as they watch? Would you put it past her?
Prince and the Revolution: Live in '85
Prince bless the vault, and all the purple treasures contained within it. For three days only (May 15-17) Prince's YouTube channel will make this 1985 show (taped at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, NY) available for the first time since the days of VHS. And this isn't just some quick 'n' dirty VHS rip, either—this concert has never looked or sounded as good as it does here, with remastering by the legendary Bernie Grundman, so feel free to turn it up as loud as it can go, and remember: if the elevator tries to bring you down, go crazy, and punch a higher floor.
The Robyn Party: Livestream Edition
Of course, Prince isn't the only option for better living through dance, music, sex, and romance. We don’t talk enough about Sweden’s favorite daughter, Robyn, whose high-energy electropop has been some of the world’s finest since the late ’90s. (2005’s Robyn is still 10,000 percent perfect.) God bless Holocene, then, for hosting a livestream edition of their regular Robyn party tonight at 8 pm, which is exactly what it sounds like: All Robyn, all night. It will make all other dance nights sound like garbage. ERIK HENRIKSEN
The 15th Annual HUMP! Film Festival
We at HUMP! were crushed to cancel our originally planned Spring re-screening, with the coronavirus crisis forcing us all inside. But after receiving enthusiastic support and permission from the filmmakers to show their films online, we knew that the show must go on! Even if we can’t watch together in movie theaters, we can still watch the 16 all new, sexy short films, curated by Dan Savage, in the privacy and safety of our homes. Dan will introduce the show (starts 8pm tonight,) and then take you straight to the great dirty movies that showcase an amazing range of shapes, colors, sexualities, kinks and fetishes!
The Russo Bros. Pizza Film School
The superstar sibling directing team behind Avengers: Endgame are looking to already shake up the still-nascent Watch Party groove people are settling into by turning online gatherings into impromptu moviemaking classes. Starting tonight at 5 pm, the Russos will gather all their Insta followers together to have some pizza and discuss one of their very favorite movies, and a big influence on their filmmaking. This week's title? The 1995 French drama La Haine, written and directed by Mathieu Kassovitz, who Americans probably know best as the "Gimme the cassshhh!!" guy from The Fifth Element. So that's mind-blower number one, right there. Mind-blowers two through 115 will certainly come as the Russos and special guest film critic Pete Hammond deconstruct the groundbreaking title, which stars Said Taghmaoui (The Elder in John Wick 3, Sameer in Wonder Woman) and Vincent Cassel (Brotherhood of the Wolf, Eastern Promises).
Avatar: The Last Airbender
If there's a binge you're looking to begin this weekend, maybe one of the most rewarding options is new to Netflix starting today. Avatar: The Last Airbender was a Nickelodeon cartoon that shares a name with a weirdly-forgettable blockbuster, and was itself turned into a weird-and-unforgettable live-action blockbuster of its own, and its absence from major streaming platforms of late has caused the show to reside in those awkward, mostly unrelated shadows. But now the three-season fantasy epic is on Netflix, and while there are no shortage of those kind of stories to work through now (thanks, Game of Thrones) many of them invariably become sort of a trudge or a slog. That never happens with Avatar. The show isn't just a potent example of modern myth done right, but a great example of how animation can unlock both action and emotion in a way live-action just can't touch.
Into the Badlands
Conversely, there are feelings that only live-action choreography and cinematography can convey, and if you're looking for a combination of mythology, fantasy, and horrifyingly beautiful acts of wanton violence, maybe this weekend is the time you finally start binging Into the Badlands, an AMC show that—like almost everything on AMC not named Walking Dead—was under-watched and under-appreciated when it was airing. It's definitely worth mentioning that the acting is pretty damn good, and the storytelling—while admittedly pretty derivative—works well for what it's trying to do. But the real draw is the fight scenes: There are a lot of them, and they make every other television show that has ever tried to incorporate action look like a squad of eight-year-olds clumsily rough-housing in the backyard.
Laugh in Place
Broken Zipper presents this online stand-up showcase aimed at giving local comedians some shine even though we're all sheltered-in-place. Tonight's all-star lineup (7 pm, $10-25) is particularly choice, including sets from Andrew Sleighter, Susan Rice, and Tyler Boeh, so show up, laugh a lot, and kick in some coin if you have it. Hosted by Nancy Norton. All donations benefit the performers and Curious Comedy Theater.
In 2014, Charli XCX won "Hitmaker of the Year," an award presented by Billboard Women in Music, and not that there should have been any question at the time, but here in 2020 we can confirm: That award was rightfully given. Charli XCX is the queen of catchy earworms: from her own hit "Boom Clap" to her feature on "Fancy" by Iggy Azalea (don't act like you don't know that chorus by heart), this woman is here to conquer the world, and her newest album, How I'm Feeling Now—created entirely in quarantine—is the next decisive step in that impending conquest. KATHERINE MORGAN