Welcome to Branded, a column exploring the nuances of pop culture. Over the next few weeks, we will be taking a look at some of the funniest and weirdest events from the past month and shining a light on how much—or how little—you should actually watch to keep up with the trends.

The Latest Fashion, Funniest TV Shows And More

Let’s start with fashion. After gracing the red carpet multiple times for the premier of the Fifty Shades of Grey movie in February, it was only a matter of time before the gorgeous, blonde starlet showed up on television again. Last month, she made an appearance on The Talk, walking the red carpet for the premiere of the sequel Fifty Shades Darker. Of course, after her latest performance, fans are hoping that she’ll be asked to grace the big screen yet again.

Fifty Shades Of Grey

Speaking of the Fifty Shades Of Grey franchise, let’s explore the fascinating—and sometimes bizarre—world of Christian Grey. When the first movie came out in 2015, audiences were introduced to the billionaire playboy who is completely dominant and possessive when it comes to women. According to Grey, women should be dominated by men as a sign of respect and love. He believes women are inferior to men and should serve as his sex slaves. When the sequel premieres on May 19, fans can expect more of the same. Grey is still very much in control of the dynamics between Bella and Edward Cullen (the movie’s main couple), and he’s still not happy about it. In fact, he threatens violence towards those he feels are undermining his authoritative status in the bedroom. The newest installment of Fifty Shades Of Grey is currently filming, and although no plot details have been revealed, the movie’s director, Dana Brunetti, promises it will be “darker and more intense” than its predecessor.


Let’s now turn to the other half of the red-hot couple, the Wachowski siblings. The director of the wonderful anime homage Soleil and Panic Attack returns with another riveting tale of interconnectivity and humanity in 2017. SENSE8, as it is affectionately known among fans, is an ambitious project that aims to bring together a global audience for what is essentially a group of friends who have connected with each other through their smartphones. The movie is based on the award-winning sci-fi manga of the same name by Hajime Tsukui and follows the adventures of the eponymous sensates as they traverse the globe solving mysteries, fighting crime, and unraveling conspiracies. Each episode of SENSE8 is set to premiere on June 23, and after each subsequent episode’s debut, viewers can expect short gaps of time between the new season’s episodes as the actors film the following week’s installment live. A trailer for SENSE8 was released in April, and although it is very short, it gave fans a glimpse of the unique blend of action, mystery, and comedy that the show is capable of.

Robbin Hood

Speaking of trailers, let’s not forget about the brilliant work of @redmayne on Twitter. The actor tweeted out previews for upcoming projects including Robin Hood, the highly anticipated new cinematic excursion into the adventures of England’s most famous thief. The first trailer for Robin Hood was released in April and showed us a younger, more inexperienced Robbin Hood attempting to live up to his namesake’s fame. According to the movie’s trailer, Robin Hood will be tasked with liberating England’s poor from the clutches of the greedy and returning the wealth to those who deserve it most. The movie also features the voices of Benedict Cumberbatch, Peter Capaldi, and Alan Rickman. Robin Hood premieres in theaters on July 13.

Black Panther

The Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to expand in both scope and inclusivity with each passing year. In the most recent installment of the Black Panther Mojawokka, which means “black king” in the Mandingo language, fans got a glimpse of the country of Wakanda and its exciting culture. The film follows the journey of T’Challa, the king of Wakanda and our main protagonist, as he protects his country from the threat of a hostile neighboring nation. In the trailer, we are shown spectacular battles between warriors from each country as well as a glimpse of Wakanda’s thriving arms industry. The film also features stars such as Michael B. Jordan, Angela Bassett, and Lupita Nyong’o. Black Panther hits theaters on February 16.


Speaking of cinematic universes, let’s not forget about the upcoming Captain America: Civil War. This summer’s culmination of the six-year-long Marvel Cinematic Universe saw the Sokovia Accords broken as half the country sided with either Iron Man or Captain America. The result is a tangled web of interconnecting storylines that will culminate in a culmination showdown next summer. Civil War is both the culmination of the last several years of build-up as well as a sort of down payment on future storylines. In the middle of the trailer, we are shown glimpses of several pivotal scenes from the final installment of 2016 as a conflict between the Avengers escalates. Although still somewhat under wraps, we do know that it will feature an A-list cast which fans have been eagerly awaiting.

Deadpool 2

On the subject of trailers, let’s not forget about the upcoming sequel Deadpool 2. The first installment of the hilarious Marvel franchise was arguably one of the best movies of 2016, and it was only a matter of time before director Tim Miller’s return was announced. Unlike most sequels, which are made to cash in on the success of the previous installment, Deadpool 2 was created with a clear dedication to paying homage to the comic book series which inspired it. The sequel picks up right where the first one left off, and although the plot is still under wraps, we know that it will feature Deadpool and his ever-lovin’ sidekick, Colossus, traveling the world and solving problems. The movie also marks the acting debut of Marvel Comics’ headlining character, Laura Kinney. It is set to premiere on May 12.

Those are some interesting dates to keep in mind as we await the next month of pop culture. Whether you’re a fan of fashion, television, or movie trailers, there’s something here for everyone. Hopefully, this column will help readers decide how much of each they should be paying attention to. Thanks for reading.