The Chainsmokers and Illenium? You’ve got to be kidding me! But these fellas don’t joke around, as we all know, and an Illenium remix of The Chainsmokers’ Don’t Let Me Down is sure to tickle your ears plentifully with its mellifluous melodic dubstep brilliance. Lest you forgot, fast rising pop talent Daya turns in the riveting vocals on the song (and I just heard her while shopping at the mall the other day, always a mark of sure success). Daya and The Chainsmokers take on a new coat of majestic stateliness on the Denver based producer’s breathtaking remix.

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Three Graces: The Daughters of Nicholas I of Russia.

Imperial Russia, circa 1840s. Below are descriptions of the sisters from the book Alexandra Feodorovna, Empress of Russia.

The grand duchess Maria was extremely lively, of quick perceptions, condescending, winning all by her goodness of heart, full of life and energy, and free from all petty forms and prejudices. Her presence never checked the most easy or unreserved conversation; she was courteous to those whom she liked, and loving to her friends; her father’s dignity was reflected in her regular features, while the heart and freshness and energy of her mother invested her whole being with a singular charm." 

The majestic mien of the grand duchess Olga evinced more calm repose; hers was a finished beauty, more remarkable for stateliness, never in intercourse with other for a moment forgetting that she was of regal birth, and concealing her real goodness of heart by a certain degree of reserve. Her perceptive faculties were not so quick as those of her elder sister, but her studies more profound; her disposition led her thoroughly to investigate every subject and every question, and to persevere with industry and patience in all that she undertook.“ 

The two eldest daughters most resembled their father, but the youngest, Alexandra, bore a greater likeness to their mother, and indeed to Queen Louise also. Until the age of 13, she gave no promise of equaling her sisters in beauty or talent; she showed very little inclination for serious matters, and cared more for childish games; but suddenly a change took place that astonished her mother, and a few months seemed to have done the work of years. This change occurred in Alexandra in her 13th year; her charming figure was developed, her pretty features refined, an eager interest in her studies ensued, and unexpected talents were displayed. From this time, she showed a love for music, and for singing in particular; and occupied herself much about nature.“

Regardless of how Ancient Greek really looked like, their IDEAL of beauty was having white skin (at least when it came for women). 

We have a lot of sources (Hesiod, Homer, Ovid, Pindar, etc) where goddesses and other women are described as being beautiful for having white skin. “White-armed” was one of the epiteths to address how beautiful a woman was. If you want one example, in The Odyssey, XVIII, Athena uses her power to make Penelope more beautiful and what we are told is: and she made her taller, too, and statelier to behold, and made her whiter than new-sawn ivory. And when it comes to Persephone, Hesiod Theogony says: Demeter, and she bare white-armed Persephone.   

There are many sources as well, regarding makeup in Ancient Greece and Rome that tell us how women used different products (even lead based products) to whiten their skin. Some men authors even joke and complain about this subject (see Ovid’s Ars Amatoria). Also, women were careful to avoid their skin getting tanned with the sun because, again, white skin was the ideal of beauty.  The fact women had to wear makeup and be careful to avoid getting tanned means that obviously not every ancient greek was “white as ivory”, but as I said again, it was the ideal. 

So please, stop disrespecting artists who make depictions of Persephone and other deities having pale or white skin as if it was inaccurate because -according to ancient greek imagery- is not. 

Obviously, deities can be portrayed with other skin colors and when it comes for deities related to activities that implied a lot of sunlight exposition it would be natural to depict them with not pale skin. Remember that deities in greek mythology could change their appearance on their wish, so they can look whatever. And in theological terms, gods can’t be limited to a skin color.

Grand Duchess Olga Nikolaevna, Queen of  Württemberg.

The majestic mien of the grand duchess Olga evinced more calm repose; hers was a finished beauty, more remarkable for stateliness, never in intercourse with other for a moment forgetting that she was of regal birth, and concealing her real goodness of heart by a certain degree of reserve. ‘ August Theodor von Grimm

Melanie Martinez’s dark electronic pop is an entrapping blend of the twisted macabre and the sugary sweet, a concoction that targets my very heart. There’s hardly a Melanie song I haven’t been able to resist so far, including Pity Party, which even samples Leslie Gore classic It’s My Party. Canada’s XVII takes that shadowy glamour and transforms the electronic pop song into a whopping future bass and trap track brimming with grandeur and majestic stateliness. It’s intensely theatrical, a remix worthy of a contemporary trap version of Phantom Of The Opera, fitting of mysterious masks, lavish costumes, and mystical sets.

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My World Of Flops - Must love dogs case file #42: Jupiter Ascending

Jupiter Ascending isn’t just perversely unsexy. It’s somehow actively anti-sexy.”

Jupiter Ascending has a bold look that fills the imposing blackness of space with a candy-colored rush of kinetic, frenetic neon, all topped off with an ornate, “Shakespeare in space” stateliness. The film’s lumbering tendency toward exposition and creaky world-building is attributable partially to its status as the first film in what was intended to be an expansive franchise. But the filmmakers built their universe in a way that ensured that nobody, but nobody, would ever be tempted to make it past the initial film.

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