Pop Culture

Have you noticed your favorite shows don't look as good as they used to? This viral post explains why.

A fascinating look at quality versus quantity.

game of thrones, house of dragons, lotr costumes

One of these things is not like the other.

For fantasy fans, it truly is the best of times, and the worst of times. On the bright side—there’s more magic wielding, dragon riding, caped crusading content than ever before. Yay to that.

On the other hand, have you noticed that with all these shows, something feels … off?

No, that’s not just adulthood stripping you of childlike wonder. There is a subtle, yet undeniable decline in how these shows are being made, and your eyes are picking up on it. Nolan Yost, a freelance wigmaker living in New York City, explains the shift in his now viral Facebook post.

The post, which has been shared nearly 3,500 times, attributes shows being “mid,” (aka mediocre, or my favorite—meh) mostly to the new streaming-based studio system, which quite literally prioritizes quantity over quality, pumping out new content as fast as possible to snag a huge fan base.

The result? A “Shein era of mass media,” Yost says, adding that “the toll it takes on costuming and hair/makeup has made almost every new release from Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu have a B-movie visual quality.”

He even had some pictures to prove it.

Yost first addressed the Amazon Prime Series “The Rings of Power.” One of the many, many things that makes Peter Jackson’s “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy so iconic is the costumes. But that legacy was the direct result of dedication to detail.

“The production spent years hand-making every single piece of armor with real metal, hand-dyeing all-natural fiber fabrics, and designing distinct embroidery and hairstyles specific to each race in Middle Earth that had continuity through the story,” Yost wrote.

He added, “the natural dyes and dedicated layers of fabrics for elves, for hobbits, wool/dyes, and for men had a much more muted/medieval look, yet ethereal because of the slight detail you don’t really notice, but the depth draws your eye to every inch of the costume regardless.” This, he says, is why those three movies stand the test of time.

Compare this to the two images from “The Rings of Power,” below. In one photo “they barely scrapped together an unnaturally gilded scale mail breastplate and just screen printed a stretched long sleeve shirt to match underneath, all over a skirt in a single layer of a warped poly skirt.”

rings of power, house of the dragon

Now you too can look like you're from Middle Earth for the low, low cost of $10.99.

Nolan Yost/Facebook

The other image shows “they just saved money on an Elven wig altogether for a 2022 pompadour, with a velvet pleated priest smock (with crushed parts not even steamed out), and a neckline that isn’t tailored to fit like we’ve seen previously with Elrond or Celeborn.”

Yost then moved onto HBO’s “House of the Dragon.” Arguably even those who have never seen a single episode of its predecessor, “Game of Thrones,” would still recognize Daenerys Targaryen for her platinum white hair—an attribute that Yost notes was quite expensive.

got hbo

It cost big bucks to be a Khalessi.


He explained that for the show’s final season alone, Daenerys’ wigs most likely cost tens of thousands, requiring human hair to be custom made into multiple wigs.

Luckily, there was only one character with that signature look in the show. For “House of the Dragon,” however, with a cast almost entirely made up of silver-haired brooding powerhouses, Yost surmises that due to budget constraints, the creators opted for synthetic wigs.

You can see below the problem this cost-cutting decision makes in terms of authenticity.

house of the dragon, house of the dragon wigs

Luckily, Matt Smith is such a good actor a few stray hairs are an easily forgivable.

Nolan Yost/Facebook

“Synthetic hair reflects light throughout the whole hair shaft and it tangles extremely easily,” Yost writes. “With any shot where a character isn’t actively moving or is performing dialogue and the hair isn’t being actively smoothed down every couple of seconds between shots, each flyaway is going to show up on camera if there’s any indirect lighting and look messy. Not only that, synthetic hair is also twice as thick per strand than human hair, so regardless of that the wigs are going to look bulky in an uncanny valley sort of way.”

This affects not just sci-fi and fantasy, but other genres meant to transport viewers into other worlds, like period pieces, which Yost points out with a picture from “Bridgerton” by Shonda Rhimes.


Yeah, this does look like they're wearing curtains. And not in a fun "Sound of Music" kind of way.

Nolan Yost/Facebook

“It’s obviously not meant to be historically accurate, which is totally fine,” he writes, but without important details or embellishments or even proper undergarments to make the clothes fit well, everything looks like a slightly more expensive Halloween costume.

Yost’s insightful post really shines a light on what audiences are having to trade off for the sake of constant output. The phrase “done is better than perfect” takes on a new meaning altogether as studios race to meet a deadline with whatever is easiest to mass produce. But if viewers are so easily taken out of these stories because of noticeable corner cutting, then perhaps it’s a sign that what we really want and need are stories worth waiting for, ones that truly pull us in and leave us captivated. This is no easy ask, for studio execs or customers alike (I too am a voracious binge-watcher), but as we can see in these examples, the most valuable experiences rarely, if ever, come from rushing.

This article originally appeared on 9.10.22

The funny thing about love is that the person we fall in love with, more often than not, we run into by accident. Another strange twist is that the love of our life is likely to show up when we least expect it.

The following story, which feels like the promise of a hit rom-com, comes courtesy of a twist of fate created by the World Cup and an Airbnb.

In 2013, after six years of battling an illness, Ana was living in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Having been financially drained by years of being sick, she invested the last of her money to buy two bunk beds and convert one of her bedrooms into an Airbnb for small groups of friends.

The Airbnb was a last-ditch effort to pay her rent and medical bills. A year later, the modest investment grew into a success, Ana’s health began to return, and the World Cup, one of the largest sporting events in the world, was coming to Rio.

To take advantage of the soccer fanatics flocking to the Cidade Maravilhosa (Marvelous City), Ana and her roommate, Fabio, turned a half room in their apartment into an Airbnb rental to give tired soccer fans a place to sleep.

“Though it was a small (pantry!) room, we added a bunk bed and listed two beds on Airbnb. One day after the listing went live, we had tons of requests for ‘Fabio’s Pantry,’” she shared. “It was fully booked for the entire World Cup period except for one week in July.”

Around this time, Ana was feeling well enough to go on her first vacation in years and took a quick trip to Uruguay. Just before she left, Ana received a reservation from a man named "Darko B." for the only unbooked days in July.

“I have always been a big fan of the movie ‘Donnie Darko’ and thought it was a strange coincidence, but didn't think anything of it,” Ana wrote. “I accepted the request, let him know I would not be there for check-in and Fabio would care for him until I was back the following week.”

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"It's pointless to dwell on regrets, but I often think about how I had it all wrong. I was so wrong in how I perceived your generosity."

Tina Platamura

You always stole my thunder. You gave them everything they wanted. You never said no when they asked for anything.

Tina Platamura

A second helping of dessert. Candy before dinner. A few more minutes in the bath. Money for the ice cream truck.

I struggled to show you respect and appreciation while trying to make sure you didn't spoil my children. I thought you would turn them into “selfish brats" by giving them everything they wanted. I thought they might never learn to wait, to take turns, to share, because you granted their wishes as soon as they opened their mouths and pointed.

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Pop Culture

Will Ferrell crashes his son's frat party and becomes the DJ

Will Ferrell, great music and awesome parenting…all rolled into one.


When your dad show up to the frat party and it instantly gets cooler.

It would probably be a college student’s worst nightmare to have his dad crash a frat party. Unless of course that dad is Will Ferrell.

Over the weekend, Ferrell was seen behind the DJ booth at a Sigma Alpha Mu party for his alma mater, the University of Southern California—the same college his son Magnus attends—channeling his popular role of Frank the Tank from “Old School.” Minus the streaking.
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Photo from Heidi Johnson Facebook page.

Tough love.

Heidi Johnson's son was 13, deeply in adolescence, and in that stage where he lashes out.

He told her he shouldn't have to deal with her rules and should be independent.

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Mischa goes through an amazing transformation after being fostered.

Mischa is a mixed-breed dog discovered in a forest in Romania with her two siblings in March 2021. It’s believed she was just a month old when she was rescued. "They [Mischa and her siblings] were terrified of humans. If they hadn't of been rescued, they all would of died from cold and hunger in the forest,” Paula Biddle, a volunteer at Noah's Ark Dog Rescue in East Anglia, England, told Newsweek.

Even though Mischa’s and her siblings were fostered, she was returned to the kennel after she was sent to "didn't work out with the resident dog."

After spending just about all her life in kennels, the rescuers felt they were running out of time with Mischa because of her deteriorating mental state. As time passed, Misha "got more scared and started to shut down; she wouldn't come near us at the kennels so we had to do something," Biddle said.

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Community rallies around teacher after she's put on leave for secret OnlyFans account

"If the state of Missouri doesn't want their teachers moonlighting then they should pay livable wages."

Community supports teacher with OnlyFans account

It's a pretty well known fact that public school teachers are severely underpaid in comparison to the cost of living in their individual areas. They often have to buy classroom supplies and decorations out of pocket, while also securing extra school supplies in case some of their students are in need. Their work doesn't stop just because the last bell rang for the day.

It's nearly impossible for them to get work done during their planning periods. That's when they answer parent emails, attend IEP meetings or call guardians about concerns so they often have to take their work home. Grading tests, papers and homework is suddenly happening when they're supposed to be catching up on their favorite shows or spending time with their own children.

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Unlock your body's full potential with the power of tailored nutrition

Redefine wellness with The Ultimate Nutrition System from BIOptimizers

Eating right feels like solving a giant jigsaw puzzle in today's fast-paced world. With a bombardment of diet fads and conflicting information, finding what works best for your body can be overwhelming. We're constantly hearing about the newest "superfoods" or "miracle diets," but the truth is, there isn't a one-size-fits-all solution. Our bodies are unique, and our nutrition should be too. So, what if there was a way to cut through the noise and truly nourish our bodies based on our specific needs?

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