Jordan Peele's 'Us' is a Creepy Tale That Sadly Mirrors Our Reality

On May 25, 1986, approximately 6.5 million Americans stood hand in hand forming a human chain that stretched from New York to California for an event called Hands Across America. It was a fundraiser project from USA for Africa (the same people who produced the “We Are the World” single the year before) in hopes of raising $100 million to fight hunger and homelessness. The hope was that everyone who participated would donate $10 for the cause. Families stood and sang together for 15 minutes. And then it was over.

I had trouble remembering if Hands Across America really happened or if it was a gimmick for the film when the original commercial for the event flashed on the big screen during the opening of Us. I only vaguely remember the event, which might have to do more with the fact that I have lived in Washington State my whole life and we weren’t involved in the project. I doubt that I’m the only one and I suspect that was also some of Jordan Peele’s reasoning as well whe…

This Day in Pop Culture for January 7

Jeremy Renner is Born
It was on this day in 1971 when Jeremy Lee Renner was born in Modesto, California. While in junior college, Renner tried out computer science, criminology, and psychology, before giving acting a try. His first film role was 1995’s Senior Trip but it was 2002’s film, Dahmer where he played serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer that has been credited in giving him his breakthrough role. He was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor his role as William James in 2008’s The Hurt Locker and he is probably best known for playing William Brandt in the Mission Impossible franchise and Hawkeye in the Marvel movies.

'Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer' is the #1 Song
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer started as a giveaway storybook written in 1939 for Montgomery Ward department stores. Robert L. May from the company’s marketing department came up with the story. More than two million copies of the book went out to customers, but most of the world was still unaware of this reindeer until ten years later when May’s brother-in-law, Johnny Marks, put the story to music. (Marks is also the writer of other holiday hits including “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree” and “A Holly Jolly Christmas.”) Gene Autry’s version of the Rudolph song is the most famous and sold more than 2 million copies in its first year and became the #1 song on the U.S. pop charts on this day in 1939 long after Christmas.

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