Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Just Shared Some Unseen Photos From Their 2017 Africa Trip

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have a deep connection to Botswana. They spent five days camping there together early on in their relationship, a period that Prince Harry has referred to as “crucial” in the past. Even the diamonds from her engagement ring were sourced from the country.

They’ve returned to Botswana a few times since then, including a trip in 2017 that made it onto their joint Instagram account this week. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex shared photos of themselves providing aid at one of Botswana’s elephant conservation centers in honor of World Elephant Day, and offered fans an update about their work with the nonprofit organization Elephants Without Borders. In a caption, the royals explained that outreach efforts supported by the Ellen Fund have helped Elephants Without Borders outfit 25 elephants with satellite navigation collars.

“These collars allow the team at EWB to track the elephants, as well as to learn their essential migratory patterns to keep their corridors safe and open so future generations of elephants can roam freely. In honour of this amazing support, EWB have named their most recently collared Elephant…ELLEN! We can’t wait to see where she will go!” they wrote.

This isn’t the first time they’ve shared photos from their Botswana trips. In April, ahead of the premiere of David Attenborough’s nature documentary series Our Planet, they posted another image of the two of them putting one of the collars on an elephant together.

“As president of @africanparksnetwork, The Duke of Sussex continues to advocate for the communities and wildlife that coexist in some of the most vulnerable environments around the world,” the Instagram caption reads. “Be it human wildlife conflict or natural disasters, these communities (park rangers, school children, families) are on the frontline of conservation and we must do more to help them as we also work to safeguard the animals and landscapes that are in critical danger.”

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Just Shared Some New Photos From Their 2017 Africa Trip

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have a deep connection to Botswana. They spent five days camping there together early on in their relationship, a period that Prince Harry has referred to in the past as “crucial.” Even the diamonds from her engagement ring were sourced from the country.

They’ve returned to Botswana a few times since then, including a trip in 2017 that made it onto their joint Instagram account this week. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex shared photos of themselves providing aid at one of Botswana’s elephant conservation centers in honor of World Elephant Day, and offered fans an update about their work with the nonprofit organization Elephants Without Borders. In a caption, the royals explained that outreach efforts supported by the Ellen Fund have helped Elephants Without Borders outfit 25 elephants with satellite navigation collars.

“These collars allow the team at EWB to track the elephants, as well as to learn their essential migratory patterns to keep their corridors safe and open so future generations of elephants can roam freely. In honour of this amazing support, EWB have named their most recently collared Elephant…ELLEN! We can’t wait to see where she will go!” they wrote.

This isn’t the first time they’ve shared photos from their Botswana trips. In April, ahead of the premiere of David Attenborough’s nature documentary series Our Planet, they posted another image of the two of them putting one of the collars on an elephant together.

“As president of @africanparksnetwork, The Duke of Sussex continues to advocate for the communities and wildlife that coexist in some of the most vulnerable environments around the world,” the Instagram caption reads. “Be it human wildlife conflict or natural disasters, these communities (park rangers, school children, families) are on the front line of conservation and we must do more to help them as we also work to safeguard the animals and landscapes that are in critical danger.”

Shopbop Sale Summer Shoe and Bags 2019: Best Fashion Buys

Labor Day is rapidly approaching, and it’s time to break out all your favorite sundresses for one final spin. If you want to get some new pieces for your wardrobe ahead of fall, there are luckily some great sales happening right now, with everything from leather jackets to floral tops.

The latest retailer to unleash discounts is Shopbop, with up to 75% off thousands of accessories. All you have to do is enter the code TAKE25 at checkout for an additional 25% off already on-sale pieces, including Staud bags, Loeffler Randall mules, and plenty of other shoes, bags, and jewelry you’ve already been eyeing from Instagram.

We did a first pass of all the discounted goods at Shopbop (you’re welcome), and here are 20 of our favorite pieces on sale.

Lifetime’s College Admissions Scandal Movie: Everything We Know So Far

Last month, Lifetime announced it was making a movie about the college admissions scandal that captivated the Internet earlier this year. If you’re unfamiliar about this real-life case, it involved a group of wealthy parents, including actors Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, who took illegal measures to secure their children’s spots at competitive universities. Huffman pled guilty to the federal charges brought against her, while Loughlin and her husband, Mossimo Giannulli, are awaiting trial.

The working title of the movie is hilariously straightforward: College Admissions Scandal. On August 12, Entertainment Weekly dropped some enticing new updates about the cast and the production. Here’s everything we know so far:

The plot. According to the official synopsis, the film will “follow two wealthy mothers who share an obsession with getting their teenagers into the best possible college. When charismatic college admissions consultant Rick Singer offers a side door into the prestigious institutions of their dreams, they willingly partake with visions of coveted acceptance letters in their heads. But when Singer cooperates with the FBI and pleads guilty, the mothers who risked everything for their kids must face the consequences of their crimes and the loss of trust and respect from their families.”

The cast. According to EW, actresses Penelope Ann Miller and Mia Kirshner will play the film’s leads: Caroline, an interior designer, and Bethany, a financial services firm owner. Both of them begin working with Rick Singer, the real-life college admissions consultant at the center of the scandal, in order to get their children into elite colleges. Michael Shanks, the Canadian actor from Saving Hope, is reportedly set to play Singer.

L to R: Penelope Ann Miller and Mia Kirshner

Getty Images

It appears Caroline and Bethany are fictional characters in this story who are most likely based on several people in the college admissions scandal. They don’t seem to be directly based on Loughlin or Huffman.

Release date. There’s still no set release date, but production on the film is slated to start this year.

Fall 2019 Fashion Essentials You Can Buy on Sale Now

After accepting the fact that fall is mere weeks away, you have two choices: mourn the end of summer, or get over it quickly so you can start planning your autumn outfits. And now’s the optimal time to do so: Everyone might be distracted by discounted high-waisted bikinis and wrap dresses, but don’t sleep on the fall essentials that are also deeply discounted right now.

There are the classic leather jackets and oversized sweaters you’ll wear for years, as well as of-the-moment pieces that are very 2019, like zebra-print dresses and statement hair clips—all at much more budget-friendly prices, for a limited time only. Spend these last few weeks of summer scoping out the best fall essentials on sale to wear through the end of the year, starting with the 11, ahead.

Pay Less Attention to Jeffrey Epstein’s Death and More to What His Accusers Need Now

Over the weekend, Jeffrey Epstein was found dead in his cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Manhattan of an apparent suicide. The moment it happened I could almost hear the sound of a million conspiracies blooming on the internet, each more insane than the next. It hadn’t been unthinkable, though—it was after all his second attempt.

But within minutes, there was talk of a swap, a body double, a plan hatched to get Epstein to Guantanamo Bay. Rapid-fire connections were drawn to the convoluted (and not real) QAnon conspiracy theory, which alleges a vast (and not real) “deep-state” effort to undermine Donald Trump. I saw supposed pictures of the corpse, and comments that it obviously didn’t match Epstein. I saw threats leveled against the Clintons and deceptive hashtags spring up like daisies. But what I didn’t see—at least not at first—was a great effort to think about what Epstein’s death would mean for his alleged victims. The focus had been switched, veering from the real plight of his victims to the fantasy of his death. We can leave investigations into Epstein’s death to the professionals, but the Twitterverse could stand to turn its attention to a conspiracy that we already know is legitimate: how badly run America’s jails are, how badly treated America’s victims of sexual assault and rape are, how the criminal justice system makes allowances for the powerful and the well-connected, while millions of people convicted of lesser crimes are made to suffer more. There is an actual miscarriage of justice here, and you don’t need to turn to Reddit to find it. Epstein’s alleged victims deserved better.

In the time since his suicide, a number of his accusers have spoken out to express their frustration.

“I am extremely mad and hurt thinking he once again thought he was above us and took the easy way out,” Jena-Lisa Jones, 30, who claims that Epstein abused her when she was 14, told ABC News.

In a statement, Jennifer Araoz, 32, who has accused Epstein of rape, expressed her own disappointment: “We have to live with the scars of his actions for the rest of our lives, while he will never face the consequences of the crimes he committed, the pain and trauma he caused so many people.”

These women haven’t accused the government of a wild master plot or drummed up support for internet theories. They’ve just asked to be heard, listened to, and respected. But of course, in Trump’s America, the prospect of a vast web of lies appeals more than the simple fact of a group of women’s truth. campaign. Trump got into politics on the back of birtherism, a conspiracy theory that suggested Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States. (Spoiler: He was.) Since he was elected president, he’s continued to make references to various supposed schemes, egging on his base. So it should come as no surprise that, as Mother Jones put it, within minutes of the news that Epstein had died, “Trump appointees, Fox Business hosts and Twitter pundits revived a decades old conspiracy theory, linking the Clinton family to supposedly suspicious deaths. #ClintonBodyCount and #ClintonCrimeFamily trended on Twitter.”

It’s crucial to call out Trump’s insane and dangerous social media activities, but not at the expense of Epstein’s accusers who are begging us to remember who the real victims in this case are. It was exquisitely Trumpian: Another potential moment of restorative justice stolen from women who just wanted a powerful man to be held accountable.

The Little Women Trailer Is Finally Here—and People Are Very Excited

Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of the classic Louisa May Alcott novel, Little Women, is one of the most-anticipated films of the year. You won’t be able to see it until Christmas Day (a perfect family outing!) but the first trailer for the movie is finally here.

Gerwig has assembled an all-star cast to tell the story of the March sisters, including Saoirse Ronan as Jo, Meryl Streep as Aunt March, Laura Dern as Marmee, Emma Watson as Meg, Florence Pugh as Amy, and Timothée Chalamet as Laurie.

From the minute the project was announced, it’s been an Internet favorite, with fans following every casting decision and photo from the set. The last big Little Women remake—starring Winona Ryder, Claire Danes, Kirsten Dunst, and Christian Bale—was also incredibly popular, but that was in 1995, well before the social media age.

We don’t want to keep you waiting any longer, though. Check out the trailer for yourself, below, and then we can discuss.

The acting, no surprise, is top-notch—with Saoirse Ronan emerging as the breakout. “I’m so sick of people saying that love is just all a woman is fit for. I’m so sick of it,” she says at the tail-end of the trailer. Streep also gets in a memorable line, telling Jo that she’ll need to marry well in order to make her way in the world. “But you’re not married, Aunt March,” Jo says, to which Aunt March says, “Well that’s because I’m rich.” Is that an Oscars sweep I see in the distance?

People are living for this trailer. Peep just a few reactions here:

“All praise, Greta Gerwig,” one fan tweeted while another enthusiastically posted, “SAOIRSE RONAN ??? OSCAR NOM IMCOMING.”

If One More Person Calls Miley Cyrus and Kaitlynn Carter ‘Gal Pals’ I’m Gonna Scream

Hi, hello. It’s me, your Friendly Lesbian Media Overlord, checking in on the right way to talk about queer relationships—which, yes, apparently we still need. This week’s case: On Saturday, it was announced that Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth are separating after less than a year of marriage. Soon after, photographs of Cyrus kissing The Hills star Kaitlynn Carter, who also recently ended her relationship with Brody Jenner, surfaced.

A source told People the women are “having fun” together while on vacation in Italy.

So, OK, this may not be a long-term relationship—but that doesn’t stop me from cringing and going into a “gal pal” spiral when I saw comments reducing their potential romance to two besties in need of “girl time” or a “fake” ploy to “mess with their two ex-husbands.”

Here’s what we’re not gonna do: We’re not going to say Cyrus (who has made it clear, multiple times, that she identifies as queer) “can’t be tamed,” call her a “wild child,” or conflate women who love women to feral animals. We’re not going to suggest that being queer is a rebound, a result of emotional trauma that leads to something as insane as trying on a sexual identity for size. We’re also not going to minimize queer female relationships like we’ve historically done. (Yes, I’m available for hire in LGBTQ media sensitivity training, and I’m very expensive.)

What’s a “gal pal spiral,” you ask? Historically, headlines have dubbed women in same-sex relationships as “gal pals.” It’s reductive, as it insinuates that women who are close or openly involved sexually or romantically are just #BFFgoals. Cara Delevingne and Ashley Benson recently went through the “gal pal” cycle after the two were photographed wearing matching gold bangs; reports claimed the women got matching “friendship rings,” despite the fact that Delevingne and Benson confirmed their relationship with an Instagram of themselves kissing labeled #PRIDE. Even after reports surfaced that they got married in Vegas, outlets countered it was only a “friendship ceremony.” Wow, I can’t wait to have a friendship ceremony and hook up with my platonic female partner on our friendshipmoon! Goals!

Delevingne was also gal pal-ed with Michelle Rodriguez when photos of the women kissing surfaced in 2014. Ireland Baldwin once kissed her “gal pal” Angel Haze. And never forget the time Kristen Stewart kept things “low-key in a denim jacket and skin-tight jeans as she steps out with live-in gal pal Alicia Cargile.” Live. In. Gal. Pal!

Our Children Have My Last Name. No, My Husband Doesn’t Mind

When my daughter was born in 2005, my husband and I decided to give her my last name. At the time, the choice felt more personal and practical than political. My husband, whose last name is Ryan, already had two sons who bore his surname. Between his five siblings and him, there were eleven grandchildren carrying on the Ryan name. We Brodeurs did not have the same numbers on our side. At the time of my daughter’s birth, it seemed possible that she might be the only child of her generation. Three years later, when our son was born, we deliberated for longer—was it fair that both children should have my name?—before deciding that he, too, would be a Brodeur. (Both children have the middle name Ryan.)

Bucking the system didn’t go unnoticed. Even though my friends, mostly progressive, were supportive of the decision, almost every one of them raised a flag of hesitation: Would it somehow undermine our sense of family? Would our children be teased? And the biggie: How did my husband really feel? Beneath every reaction, even from people who clearly admired the choice, lay the assumption that my husband must be a pushover and I, a master manipulator.

My husband shrugged it off.

From my own anecdotal research, of the very few heterosexual married couples who opt to pass along the mother’s last name, most do so for the same reason as we did: the mother’s lineage is at stake. But today, 14 years after making the initial decision, I have to acknowledge that preserving the Brodeur name wasn’t the only reason behind it. Now I can admit to something I wasn’t even aware of back then: I wanted my children to have my last name simply because I wanted it. I can feel a tinge of shame at the brazenness of this desire, but that emotion is followed quickly by a stronger one—anger.

The author with her husband and children.

China Jorrin

Men rarely feel guilty or question their motives when it comes to naming their progeny. They’re certainly not accused of being manipulative. Like so many privileges, it’s a given. In our failure to question patrilineality—literally the tracing of descent through the paternal line—or consider the alternatives, we take for granted the primacy of the male line and deny the mother’s history. The male monopoly on surnames in our culture goes back centuries and has its roots in the ownership and tracking of property, which then included wives, children, and slaves.

I’ve spent much of the last three years writing a memoir about the complicated relationship I have with my own mother, a primary love and powerful force in my life. In that time, I’ve explored the threads that link families across generations and the extent to which we can choose what we pass on to our children. To be sure, a name is one such choice. It binds a person to a familial line and history not only in legal and social ways, but in emotional ones, too. I am the child of both of my parents but, unquestionably, my mother had an outsized influence over me. Yet, it is my father’s name that I have passed onto my children. In her lifetime, despite having a successful and public career entirely of her own making, my mother used four different last names—her father’s and her three husbands’.

What Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth Can Teach Us About the On-Again, Off-Again Relationship

Miley and Liam breaking up (again)—and so quickly after what was intended to be a lifelong commitment—makes me wonder about the nature of an on-again, off-again relationship. In rom coms and romance novels, love doesn’t have room for an on-again, off-again narrative: A couple meets (probably in an adorable New York Times “Modern Love” essay sort of way), falls in love at first sight, gets married, and embarks on a lifetime of Instagram captions of “This one is okay, I guess 😘”

On television, though, pop-culture has introduced a new narrative for the on-and-offs: the meant to be. Ross and Rachel might have dealt with more than their fair share of break-ups and make-ups on Friends, but he was her lobster! No matter how many times they were or weren’t on a break, when Rachel got off the plane it still felt right. Same goes for Carrie and Mr. Big on Sex and the City, Seth and Summer on The O.C., Nick and Jess on New Girl, and Luke and Lorelei on Gilmore Girls. Everything these couples went through made their relationship stronger, gave it history and depth that made the ultimate resolution all the more satisfying for an audience who’d been rooting for them for years.

Cyrus and Hemsworth in 2019.

Jon Kopaloff/WireImage

But real life does not operate by TV rules (this writer, a genius, pointed out). Break-ups are messy—cruel things get said, feelings get hurt, people become jealous or resentful. Coming back together isn’t always the magical reunion it so often feels like in the moment.

Think back to your high school physics class: a ball dropped from ten feet in the air might bounce only eight feet back up after it hits the ground, then five feet, then two, and then no bounce at all. Wind resistance, friction, whatever—it all causes diminishing returns. A relationship can act the same way. Each new iteration of a relationship re-introduces the ghosts of old grudges, pet peeves, resentments thought dormant.

TV necessitates pacing and drama. But we don’t need, nor would we care for, drama in the relationships of whichever real-life couples in your orbit constitutes #CoupleGoals. Chances are, the healthiest relationship you know involves more nights watching Netflix and playing Scrabble than races to airports and dramatic declarations of love in the pouring rain. Ross and Rachel never need to exist in the dull, awkward, boring moments that aren’t written by a crack team of sitcom writers. They’ll never need to exist with Rachel resenting the fact that she sacrificed her job in Paris for Ross, or realizing he was pretty screwed up for not being OK with a male nanny. (And we all know Ross never actually got over his indignation they were on a break.)