I’ll Be Gone in the Dark Review: The HBO True-Crime Series Actually Puts the Survivors’ Stories First

Five minutes into I’ll Be Gone in the Dark and I was hooked. The six-part HBO documentary series explores the long—and deeply unsettling—case of the East Area Rapist, later known as the Golden State Killer. The idea that he terrorized California for decades, attacking over 50 people and killing 12, and I’d never even heard of him before rattled me to my core. How is it possible that such a prolific serial killer could stay under the radar for so long? But his crimes might never have garnered national attention if it wasn’t for the late Michelle McNamara, who started a blog, “True Crime Diary,” that turned into the book the docuseries is based on: I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer.

The docuseries focuses on McNamara’s increasingly fervent desire to find the Golden State Killer and bring him to justice by weaving together original recordings and excerpts from her book along with interviews with survivors, detectives and McNamara’s husband, comedian Patton Oswalt, who recounts intimate details about her fascination with the case. 

McNamara and Oswalt

HBO

Obsession is the only word to describe McNamara’s fixation on finding the Golden State Killer. Though she sadly passed away in 2016, two years before Joseph James DeAngelo Jr. was arrested, her work—including this 2013 Los Angeles Magazine article—unquestionably kept his case in the public eye. In fact, her book was so monumental that an adaptation was discussed before it even hit shelves. 

According to I’ll Be Gone in the Dark‘s director and executive producer, Liz Garbus, HBO sent her the manuscript before it was published. “I didn’t know about Michelle or even the case prior to that,” she tells Glamour. “And I was inspired to try to help tell the story, tell the story of the survivors, and tell the story of the obsession.”

That’s an important part about I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: Unlike many other true-crime tales, the series doesn’t focus on the Golden State Killer—this is about the survivors and their stories. It’s difficult to listen to the women describe in detail the brutal attacks they survived, but Garbus felt it was crucial to include. “I think they trusted that we would be doing a thorough and thoughtful take on their story,” she says, adding she did not want to reduce their interviews to “a horrible sound bite of trauma.”  

The Violet Grey Violet Box Can Save You Over $400 in Luxe Beauty

The days of slapping on “just any” moisturizer are gone, and if you’re looking for luxury beauty that live up to its name (and price tag) turn to Violet Grey, the high-end retailer that carries the crème de la crème of holy grail products. 

You can get some of the Internet’s most lusted-after items—like Augustinus Bader’s The Rich Cream and Vintner’s Daughter’s Active Treatment Essence—at markdowns you can’t find anywhere else. And though Violet Grey’s site wide sales are rare, you can score discounts on its luxe beauty inventory through another promotion: The Violet Box. 

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While you may not have heard of Violet Boxes, you need to get them on your beauty radar (and top shelf) stat. They’re only released twice a year in limited quantities—so when they’re gone, they’re gone for good. Boxes are themed (think Violet Grey best-sellers, products from female-founded brands, or wellness essentials). 

The box dropping today is curated by Staff Picks, meaning everything inside is vetted and raved about by Violet Grey’s very own team. For just $250, you’ll get a mix of nine full and travel-size products—and while that can be a lot to drop in one go, if you were to buy everything on its own, your total would come out to $687.50. (Whew.) Here’s what you’ll get: 

The Staff Picks box dropped today and is available while supplies last—but you don’t want to sleep on this deal. Considering you’re saving over $400 on products, the Violet Grey box is going to move fast. In fact, the brand says they typically sell out in less than two weeks—which makes sense because the retailer has a cult-like following and almost half a million Instagram followers. Needless to say, the clock is ticking, so shop the box while you can. 

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Blue Ivy Carter Won Her First BET Award—and She’s Only 8 Years Old

Blue Ivy Carter is officially a BET Award winner—at the ripe old age of 8 years old. That’s a pretty incredible accomplishment for any kid, even one who calls Beyoncé and Jay-Z, “mom and dad.”

Blue Ivy is officially the youngest winner in BET history for her work with Beyoncé on the song “Brown Skin Girl,” which was part of the album, The Lion King: The Gift. Blue and Beyoncé (and collaborators WizKid and Saint Jhn) beat out Alicia Keys, Ciara featuring Lupita Nyong’o, Ester Dean, City Girls and La La, Layton Greene, Lizzo featuring Missy Elliott, and Rapsody featuring PJ Morgan for the 2020 BET HER Award. 

The ceremony, of course, was virtual this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic—and Blue did not make a speech for the award, which was given out during the pre-show. But Beyoncé did accept the BET Humanitarian Award, introduced by former First Lady Michelle Obama. 

This wasn’t even Blue Ivy’s first award for the song. She won the Ashford & Simpson Songwriters’ Award at the 2019 BET Soul Train Awards, as well as Outstanding Duo, Group or Collaboration at the 2020 NAACP Image Awards. She’s also appeared on some of her dad’s tracks, rapping on “We Family” from his 4:44 album.

Blue Ivy is set to appear in Bey’s newly-announced visual album, Black Is King, which will premiere on Disney+ July 31. The film is based on the music from The Gift and will surely be another powerful moment in Beyoncé’s storied career. 

Honestly, at this point, we wouldn’t be surprised if Blue Ivy Carter has an EGOT by the time she’s 20. Well done, young one. Well done. 

Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade’s Sweetest Family Moments

Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade have been together for over a decade—and married for six years. They have one daughter together, Kaavia James, and Union is stepmother to Wade’s three children he has from previous relationships: 13-year-old Zaya, 18-year-old Zaire, and 6-year-old Xavier. In addition, Wade has custody of his 18-year-old nephew, Dahveon Morris. Union and Wade are constantly posting the sweetest family moments on Instagram, plus photos of them as a couple that remind me, painfully, that I’m tragically single. But in these uncertain times, I’ll take joy wherever I can—and sometimes that joy is fantasizing about what it’d be like to be part of the Wade-Union family.

These Instagram posts, below, give me the most family-slash-relationship envy. I just want to be in a lineage of basketball and/or Hollywood royalty!

This priceless mother-daughter moment.

Actually, they’ve had several of those.

And also the funniest.

This photo of Union and Zaya is maybe the happiest thing I’ve ever seen?

The most stylish trio on Earth.

This iconic chapter in “#QuarantineNaturalHairChronicles.”

When Union had Kaavia blow a kiss to the camera.

These four need to start a band.

Because, like, Kaavia is already a pop star!

Seriously, quarantine with this family would actually be a blast?

Zaya’s red carpet debut was everything.

OK, a family cannot be this cute and also this successful. It’s not fair!

As Union put it in this caption, family over everything.

Kaavia taking a very important business call.

Obsessed with Kaavia side-eyeing her mom’s glass of wine.

These matching plant Halloween costumes? Come on!

Not to mention when Union and Kaavia went as the East Compton Clovers. Bring It On forever!

A father-daughter pool moment.

And last but not least, when Union introduced Zaya to the world.

After Zaya Wade came out as transgender to her family, Union shared her support on social. “Meet Zaya,” Union tweeted. “She’s compassionate, loving, whip smart and we are so proud of her. It’s Ok to listen to, love & respect your children exactly as they are. Love and light good people.”

Best family ever.

How to Get Rid of Flaky, Dry Scalp: Treatment and Causes

A dry scalp can also be caused by how frequently (or infrequently) you shampoo. “If you shampoo too often, you could dry out your scalp, but if you shampoo too infrequently, your skin’s natural oil can build up, making your head feel flaky or itchy,” says Geraghty. “Most women know what makes their scalp and hair feel good, and that’s what you should stick with, regardless of any no-shampoo or infrequent-shampoo trends.”

The Treatment

Start by considering how often you’re washing your hair. Does itchiness come whenever you’re stretching between washes with dry shampoo? If so, either switch formulas (here’s a list of the best dry shampoos) or hit the shower a little more regularly. 

If allergies to hair products are a concern, a dermatologist can offer patch testing to see what ingredients your skin may be adversely reacting to. From there, it’s rather simple: switch to a new product that doesn’t contain the offending ingredient and you should be flake-free in no time.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a common skin condition that can cause redness, flaking, and scaling on your scalp. “Usually the scaliness is a lot thicker and more pronounced in psoriasis compared to dandruff. Prescription medicines are often required to control it,” says Geraghty.

The Treatment

People with psoriasis may also benefit from shampoos containing coal tar or salicylic acid and mineral oil as a scalp treatment to help soften and remove scales. A dermatologist can prescribe topical steroid medicines—liquids or foams that dry quickly and don’t tend to weigh down your hair—that can be very helpful in controlling dryness, itching, flaking, irritation, or rash.

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Eczema

Eczema is a skin condition that can cause flare-ups of a red, itchy rash all over your body—yes, even on your scalp. “Skin cells are usually held together, forming a barrier that helps skin retain its moisture and prevents things from getting in—people with eczema have a defective barrier,” says says Heather Summe, M.D., a dermatologist at New York’s Northwell Health Medical Group. What that means is that your skin loses moisture more easily, which also makes it easier for allergens and irritants to get in. 

The Treatment

Fragrances can often be the culprit behind eczema flare-ups, so you’ll want to look out for shampoos and conditioners that are unscented. Good ones can be hard to find, but derms agree that Exederm and Free and Clear are good options. If you suspect eczema could be the cause of your itchy scalp, though, it’s worth scheduling an appointment with a dermatologist so you can create a custom regimen that works best for you.

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Pharmaceutical Specialties Free and Clear Shampoo

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Your Diet

No one wants to hear what they’re eating could be a trigger for skin conditions, but the fact is that some high-carb foods can contribute to increased yeast on your scalp, which results in flakes.

The Treatment

If you’re prone to dandruff, try cutting back on carbs and sugar to see if you notice a difference. You can also take fish oil supplements, which are rich in omega-3 fatty acids and known to help fight dryness. Zinc, along vitamins A, B, and C, can also help keep your skin hydrated and healthy. And don’t forget to drink more water. (It really does help.)

Dry Scalp Prevention

Following treatments for the underlying cause of dry scalp is the best way to keep it from coming back, but there are a couple universal prevention steps you can take.

  • As mentioned above, pay attention to when your scalp flares up. If it’s after not washing enough, try to shampoo more regularly—but if you’re already washing every day, try cutting back to every other day.

  • Incorporate scalp-soothing treatments into your routine, whether that’s an anti-dandruff shampoo, a hydrating coconut oil mask, or a calming scalp serum.

  • Drink enough water. It’s not a magical cure-all, and it won’t make a dry scalp go away over night, but dehydration definitely plays a role in your skin’s health. And that’s exactly what your scalp is—skin.

When to See a Dermatologist

You can try anti-dandruff shampoos or switch up your hair care routine, but at some point, you might want to see a professional. “If scalp dryness is very itchy, feels irritated or uncomfortable, or is causing a lot of flaking, it’s worth a trip to a dermatologist to find out what’s going on,” says Geraghty. “A derm can determine the diagnosis, offer medicines, and tailor a skin and scalp regimen to help control the problem.”

Lindsay Colameo is a beauty writer in New York City.

Kelsea Ballerini Slams Chase Rice for Having a Packed Concert Over the Weekend

Kelsea Ballerini had some words for her fellow country music star Chase Rice after he played a packed concert for fans in Tennessee amid the coronavirus pandemic on Saturday, June 27.

She took to Twitter to express her distaste for Rice’s decision, quote-tweeting someone who posted a video showing an unmasked crowd standing close together, not abiding by recommended social distancing guidelines. “Imagine being selfish enough to put thousands of people’s health at risk, not to mention the potential ripple effect, and play a NORMAL country concert right now. @ChaseRiceMusic, We all want (and need) to tour. We just care about our fans and their families enough to wait,” she wrote. According to Us Weekly, Rice had posted a clip from the show with the caption, “We back,” but it has since been deleted after a wave of criticism poured in. 

“All local requirements were abided by for the recent concert, and numerous precautions were taken,” Brian May, VP of the Brushy Mountain Group, told Variety in a statement. (Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary was the venue where the concert was held.)

“We drastically reduced our maximum venue capacity of 10,000 to 4,000 maximum capacity (lower than the state’s advisement of 50%) with less than 1,000 in attendance Saturday night, providing ample space in the outdoor lawn area for fans to spread out to their own comfort level,” he continued. “All guests were given temperature checks prior to entering the venue and free hand sanitizer was provided to everyone at entry. All vendors and staff were advised to wear masks and gloves when interacting with guests, and bandanas were available for purchase on-site.”

“We were unable to further enforce the physical distancing recommended in the signage posted across the property and are looking into future alternative scenarios that further protect the attendees, artists, and their crews and our employees,” he said. “We are reevaluating the series from the top to bottom—from implementing further safety measures, to adding stanchions, to converting the space to drive-in style concerts, to postponing shows.”

Ballerini was not the only person to call out Rice on social media. 

As for those who may try to argue, “But what about all the Black Lives Matter protests?”—there is not evidence that those are causing spikes in COVID-19 cases, according to a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research. 

“Our findings suggest that any direct decrease in social distancing among the subset of the population participating in the protests is more than offset by increasing social distancing behavior among others who may choose to shelter-at-home and circumvent public places while the protests are underway,” the report states, per CNN

Chase Rice has not commented further about the show or Kelsea Ballerini’s comments. 

BET Awards 2020: Beyoncé Receives Humanitarian Award

Beyoncé was honored with the Humanitarian Award on Sunday night, June 28, at the BET Awards 2020, and her speech was powerful. 

For those who don’t know, the BET Awards Humanitarian nod goes to a public figure whose philanthropic efforts are particularly inspired. Beyoncé has a 20-year history of being an advocate for social justice and change, particularly for Black people. This has greatly influenced her most recent work—from 2016’s Lemonade to Black Is King, her new Disney+ visual album coming later this summer.

Former First Lady Michelle Obama presented the award to Beyoncé. “From her music that gives voice to Black joy and Black pain to her activism that demands justice for Black lives,” Obama said. “…She’s always turning up, looking out, and making us all a little bit better…You inspire me. You inspire all of us.”

It’s no surprise Bey offered some wise words while accepting the honor during the BET Awards 2020 (which was virtual and featured pre-taped segments from artists and celebrities).

“I want to dedicate this award to all my brothers and sisters out there inspiring me, marching for change,” she said. “We have one more thing to do to walk in our true power: vote. We have to vote like our lives depend on it. Because it does.” Watch her speech, below:

Bey then shared a trailer for Black Is King, the visual album out July 31.

On June 19 (a.k.a Juneteenth), Beyoncé dropped a surprise single, “Black Parade.” “Happy Juneteenth Weekend! I hope we continue to share joy and celebrate each other, even in the midst of struggle. Please continue to remember our beauty, strength and power,” she wrote on Instagram at the time.

And a few weeks ago, Beyoncé gave a very poignant graduation speech to the class of 2020. “To all those who feel different, if you’re part of a group that’s called ‘other’ a group that does not get the chance to be centre stage: Build your own stage, and make them see you. Your queerness is beautiful. Your blackness is beautiful. Your compassion, your understanding, your fight for people who may be different from you is beautiful. I hope you continue to go into the world and show them that you will never stop being yourself, that it’s your time now. Make them see you,” she said.

Respect Trailer: The First Look at the Aretha Franklin Biopic Is Here

Jennifer Hudson’s portrayal of Aretha Franklin in the biopic Respect is one of the most anticipated performances of the year⁠—and now we have a preview of what’s to come.

The first full trailer for Respect premiered during the 2020 BET Awards on Sunday night, June 28, and let’s just say Hudson has another awards season sweep on her hands. From these two minutes alone, it’s clear Hudson has nailed the heart, passion, and drive of Franklin, a.k.a the Queen of Soul. She also does all the singing justice, not that we were worried about that.

Go ahead and check out the trailer for yourself, below:

The cast of Respect is stacked. Forest Whitaker portrays Aretha’s father, C.L. Marlon Wayans plays Aretha’s first husband, Ted White, and Audra McDonald plays Aretha’s mother, Barbara Siggers Franklin. The cast is rounded out with supporting performances from Queen Latifah, Mary J. Blige, and Heather Headley.

In a way, Jennifer Hudson’s performance is years in the making. Franklin told Glamour all the way back in 2012 that she’d like to see Hudson play her in a biopic. Interestingly, she also included Audra McDonald on her short list, so we’re sure she would be thrilled with how this biopic turned out. (Aretha Franklin passed away on August 16, 2018.)

Courtesy of MGM

The world first saw Hudson’s acting prowess in the 2006 film adaptation of Dreamgirls, which costarred Beyoncé and Eddie Murphy. She took home every award under the sun for her portrayal of Effie White, including the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. “I didn’t think I was going to win but, wow, if my grandmother was here to see me now,” Hudson said during her acceptance speech. “She was my biggest inspiration for everything because she was a singer, and she had the passion for it but she never had the chance, and that was the thing that pushed me forward to continue.”

I have a feeling she’ll have more acceptance speeches to give in the not-so-distant future.

Respect hits theaters December 25, 2020, health restrictions pending.

Beyoncé Just Announced Black Is King, A New Visual Album Coming to Disney+

Beyoncé, who blessed us with Homecoming in 2019 and Lemonade in 2016, has announced her next visual experience for 2020: Black Is King on Disney+. 

Black Is King, based on the music from The Lion King: The Gift soundtrack, is a virtual album written, produced, and directed by Beyoncé that will debut on July 31, 2020—one year after the singer voiced Nala in the Disney remake

The film weaves”a tale of a young king’s transcendent journey through betrayal, love, and self-identity,” according to a press release from the streaming service. “His ancestors help guide him toward his destiny, and with his father’s teachings and guidance from his childhood love, he earns the virtues needed to reclaim his home and throne.”

Beyoncé released the trailer on June 28 on her website and we already have chills.

“A journey is a gift,” the singer says in the teaser before a montage of stunning footage. 

According to Variety, Black is King will include appearances by Blue Ivy Carter, Jay-Z, Childish Gambino, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell, and many more special guests. 

Black Is King is a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience,” the announcement said. “The film is a story for the ages that informs and rebuilds the present. A reunion of cultures and shared generational beliefs. A story of how the people left most broken have an extraordinary gift and a purposeful future.”

“These timeless lessons are revealed and reflected through Black voices of today, now sitting in their own power,” the statement continued. “Black Is King is an affirmation of a grand purpose, with lush visuals that celebrate Black resilience and culture. The film highlights the beauty of tradition and Black excellence.”

This announcement comes shortly after Beyoncé dropped the surprise single “Black Parade” on Juneteenth to benefit BeyGOOD’s Black Business Impact Fund. 

“Happy Juneteenth,” Beyonce.com read under the Black Parade Route page. “Being Black is your activism. Black excellence is a form of protest. Black joy is your right.”

We have a feeling Beyoncé will continue to spread a lot of joy with Black Is King.

A Golden Girls Episode Was Removed By Hulu Over Blackface Controversy

Hulu is pulling a Golden Girls episode that featured a scene with the main characters wearing mud masks. 

According to Deadline, the episode was removed from popular streaming service at “the request from the series’ distributor, Disney-ABC Domestic Television.”

The episode in question, titled “Mixed Blessings,” aired in 1988 and follows the tension between two families as Michael (Scott Jacoby), the son of Dorothy (Beatrice Author), plans to marry Lorraine (Rosalind Cash), an older Black woman.

Dorothy is concerned over the age difference and Lorraine’s mom and aunts have doubts about her marrying a white man, so they attempt end the relationship. However, in once scene, Lorraine’s family walk in on  Rose (Betty White) and Blanche (Rue McClanahan) trying new mud mask treatments. 

“This is mud on our faces, we’re not really Black,” Rose says in the episode. 

The iconic ’80s sitcom, which is beloved by many precisely because it dealt with real issues of racism, sexism, homophobia, and ageism, did not shy away from controversial or sensitive topics—something many fans pointed out on Twitter.

In fact, some say the Golden Girls episode does not portray blackface at all—and removing the episode is actually harmful. “Removing this episode is weird, counterproductive and stupid,” author Roxane Gay tweeted.  “It diminishes the effort to actually end racism.”

Amid worldwide Black Lives Matter protests and the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and many more Black people at the hands of police, the entertainment industry is attempting to reckon with its own history of racism and complicity with white supremacy. Earlier this week, Tina Fey had multiple episodes of 30 Rock featuring blackface removed from streaming services