Artist of the Month: Camila Cabello

Camila Cabello: an actual goddess.

January is my birth month, so I reserved this month for my current most favourite singer, which is super funny considering I couldn’t care less for Fifth Harmony.

Starting out as part of the aforementioned girl group (as the clear leader but that’s another story) in 2013, Camila branched out by herself at the end of 2016 and really soared.

Who else could look this good mid-sing with their eyes closed? Goddess! (Photo taken from rocor’s Flickr photostream)

Her first solo album came in the self-titled Camila, which featured my most favourite song of hers, Never Be the Same. I believe this track is what incorporates Camila’s iconic sound; her breathy vocals, juxtaposed with the strong notes she pulls out only moments later, encapsulates the sound that Camila portrays. The almost-whisper of “you’re to blame” is what really sticks out for me about this song, and is almost the sole reason why this song will probably forever remain as my favourite Cabello track.

Another song from the album Camila that contains a mixture of Camila’s breathy-and-then-strong vocals but in a high-energy pop-reggaeton tune is She Loves Control. If you think I like this song because I relate to loving control due to being a control freak, then you’d probably be right. But the reggaeton vibe to this song connects with her Latin roots, and to be honest, what is there not to like about the deep, booming sounds of reggaeton?

It would be remiss of me not to mention the song that, upon hearing it for the first time, brought me to tears. First Man is a pop-rock piano ballad penned by Cabello herself detailing her relationship with her father, saying that while she has found love in her life, her dad will always be the first man that really loved her. The music accompaniment is lovely, but it’s the lyrics that make this song stand out. Touching words such as “So I had to stop the car and turn around to tell you you were the first man that really loved me” is what really got me, considering my strong relationship with my own father.

Recommended Tracks
Senorita” ft. Shawn Mendes (Romance)
Havana” ft Young Thug (Camila)
Easy” (Romance)

I cannot harp on enough about how amazing and talented and sensational Camila Cabello is. She has a plethora of music under her belt, and there’s something for everyone. Give the above music a listen, and I guarantee you won’t regret it.

– by The Black Widow

Take Me On a Holidate!

That was for you, Luke Bracey.

I was sitting on the lounge watching yet another terribly terrific Christmas romcom and my friend walks out and says “What is it with you and these Christmas movies? They’re all the same!” To that, I say: let’s talk about Holidate.

Holidate stars Emma Roberts and Luke Bracey as Sloane and Jackson respectively. Sloane is irreparably single and still pining after her ex that left her for someone else, and Jackson is a fuckboi with commitment issues and a beautiful smile.

The two meet in a chance encounter (shocker!) and then after initially detesting each other (even bigger shocker!) they agree to be each other’s ‘holidate’ – the person they can bring as a date on holidays so their family and friends can stop bugging them about being single, because apparently there’s nothing worse than being single during a holiday (this is a stigma that I wish would disappear, but more on that later).

Luke Bracey is scratching his head in awe of my beauty. Emma Roberts is also pictured.

You know I love a good Christmas romcom so this post is going to be overwhelmingly positive.

The first thing I noticed about this film which became my most favourite thing about it (besides Luke Bracey’s fine ass) is how realistic it was. I understand that majority of Christmas movies are intended to be family friendly, so swearing or the slightest inclination of physical intimacy are forbidden, but let’s be honest: people swear, and they have sex. And this movie had that. Fuck, it was refreshing.

Again, I’m aware that movies like this always have a predictable ending, but that’s the appeal of Christmas romcoms; even though I’m not going to ‘spoil’ the ending for you, your first assumption is probably correct. But the journey on these movies are so fun, and this was a fun ass mf journey!

You had the stock standard meddling middle aged woman (Sloane’s mother); the ex and his physical upgrade; the potential love interest (Farooq); and of course, the extremely attractive male lead that appears in a random scene shirtless for no reason and makes guys and gals want to watch this movie.

Plus, how iconic is the finger scene?! (Probably not the fingering you’re thinking of)

I’m going to be honest: I’ve never been a big fan of Emma Roberts, and I can’t explain why. She’s not untalented, or unattractive, or difficult to watch, but I just haven’t really connected to her before. But she did a good job in this movie as the lonely girl who falls for the guy character. Sloane was made to be kind of quirky, but not too quirky so she doesn’t appear to be one of those ‘I’m not like other girls’ harpies.

If you haven’t gotten the hint already, I’m a big Luke Bracey fan. His looks aside, I’ll always have a soft spot for Aussie actors, and on top of that, he was also great in his role. But most importantly, he was believable in his role. I believed that he was a fuckboi douchebag in the beginning, and then I believed that he was this closet romantic by the end of the movie that wanted nothing more than a fairytale ending.

Also anything with Kristin Chenoweth in it is guaranteed to be a deadset ripper. Can’t say enough positive things about her. 10/10 superstar. Ugh. What a queen.

Generally speaking with Christmas romcoms, I’m a one and done kinda guy. Even though I love them so much, they don’t have the greatest replayability. But I would happily watch this movie again, and again, and again, until Luke Bracey figures out that he’s in love with me.

Just kidding. Sort of.

But seriously, cannot recommend this movie enough. If you have Netflix and have nothing productive to do, please do yourself a favour and watch it. And think of me when you see Luke Bracey with his pretty smile.

– by The Black Widow

Artist of the Month: Erika Jayne

“Some people call me cold, but that’s not ice; it’s diamonds.”

If you know me, then you know that I am a HUGE fan of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. As such, it should come as a shock to no one that the blonde pop diva herself would appear on Widow’s Lure as a featured artist of the month.

She’s crass, she’s sassy, she’s blonde, and she’s super fabulous… she’s the alter ego of Erika Girardi…

The artist of the month for December 2020: Erika Jayne.

The fabulous Erika Jayne being interviewed about how damn fabulous she is. (Photo taken from kathryn deem’s Flickr photostream)

Erika Jayne has been creating music since 2007, but her popularity has soared on the dance charts due to her appearances on RHOBH. Even if you weren’t a fan of Erika Girardi on the show, then I’m sure you would be a fan of Erika Jayne.

When I do personal training with my PT every Tuesday morning and he asks me what music to play on his outdoor speaker, I can literally hear the groan when I suggest Xxpen$ive by Erika Jayne. He shouldn’t be surprised; it’s the song I always request when he asks me this question.

If you’re looking to be introduced to Erika Jayne’s music, Xxpen$ive is a good place to start as I believe it shows off every intricacy about her that makes her so appealing. This track is unapologetic as Erika casually sings about how expensive it is to upkeep her lifestyle and appearance, and she still doesn’t give a fuck. When I first heard this song, I compared her to the likes of Mariahlynn, as both of these women have such bold lyrics that suit the hip-hop inspired dance accompaniment.

If you want another example of just how bold, daring and carefree Erika Jayne can get, then look no further than How Many Fucks. As the song suggests, she gives zero fucks about what anyone thinks about her, and who doesn’t want to admire someone like that? How Many Fucks follows the same kind of trend as Xxpen$ive: the lyrics are brash, the dance music will get even the most introverted person onto the dance floor, and the unapologetic approach this song has is infectious. If you needed any more convincing to listen to this track, it peaked at number one on Billboard’s US Dance Club list.

Now to soften the mood a bit, let me introduce you to the song that shares the name of Erika Jayne’s gimmick name: Pretty Mess. I’m aware that there are a lot of remixes for Erika’s songs, so referring to the original version itself, Pretty Mess has a slower, softer approach than the previous two tracks have. Erika’s vocals offer a sense of vulnerability, which matches the more subtle dance tones of this song.

Recommended Tracks
Painkillr” (non-album single)
Roller Coaster” from Pretty Mess
Party People (Ignite the World)” (non-album single)

The thing I love most about Erika Jayne is she doesn’t necessarily have this dance music career for the money or the fame. She does it because she genuinely loves it, and has fun slipping into her Erika Jayne persona.

God, no wonder why I want to be her so much.

– by The Black Widow

Top 14 Resident Evil Characters

Spoiler alert: Steve is not one of them.

It was the franchise that completely defined the survival horror genre, and it also turned out to be one of my favourite all time video game franchises ever.

My first introduction to Resident Evil – seeing as I went for Nintendo 64 over the PS1 – was Resident Evil 2 (in my opinion the best game of the series, but that’s for another listicle). I was amazed at the incredible storytelling, jump scares, well-defined characters, and entertaining gameplay. I’m a fan of tank controls. Don’t @ me.

We all know how much I love Chris Redfield, but how high is he up on this list of legends? (PHOTO CREDIT: Colony of Gamers Flickr photostream)

Over the years, Resident Evil has been pumping out more and more survival horror, including the iconic Outbreak series, and remakes of older games to give the newer generation a taste of what we had back in the day. During these years, we’ve been introduced to several characters of the franchise, from the dashing hunk Chris Redfield, to the friendly waitress Cindy Lennox.

We’ve been spoiled for choice of characters, and today I’m going to list my top 14 favourite characters from the Resident Evil franchise.

14. Alyssa Ashcroft
Getting started with an underappreciated character of the franchise, Alyssa Ashcroft was the determined reported from the Outbreak series, and my second go-to character in these games. Described as a no-nonsense journalist armed with a red power suit, Alyssa has quite an interesting backstory (only discovered if you play as her in the Flashback scenario in Outbreak File #2) and also has a pot shot skill which is extremely useful.

13. Ada Wong
Someone I’m sure people would expect to be higher up on this list, let me just say that while I think Ada is a badass, I just don’t think she’s that interesting. Her zero personality suits her assassin character, and I love how she’s always zipping about with her grapple gun in heels, but that’s all she offers to me really. One could say, however, that she invented #WasteHisTime because of how long she’s been stringing on poor Leon.

12. Becca Woolett
Just like Alyssa, I appreciate when a female character is given a skill that compliments a good attack plan; female characters are always given support roles in survival horror/action games like these, so it’s a good change. Becca is by far the best with guns in Resident Evil: Resistance which is made all the more better by her cute Southern demeanour and Daisy Duke outfit. She shows that you can be a sexy sassy Southern belle and still pop some zombie brains off.

11. Barry Burton
Mostly because he’s a daddy. Barry Burton is the protective father figure of the series that provides you with a sense of comfort, either as Jill Valentine in Resident Evil, or as Natalia Korda in Resident Evil: Revelations 2. His undying loyalty to the people he holds as family is the most endearing quality a character in a survival horror franchise could have, and we love him for it.

10. Cindy Lennox
My go to character in the Outbreak series, Cindy Lennox is the sweetheart girl-next-door character trope of the eight playable characters in the games. Starting off as a beautiful waitress at Jack’s Bar, she ends up playing a pivotal role in the team as she has a background in first aid; in particular, the mixing of herbs (no she’s not a weed dealer). While Alyssa had a more active role in the team, Cindy’s passive support role isn’t to be overlooked, and that along with the fact that she’s more liked by the other NPC characters, makes her a valuable character to play with.

9. Sheva Alomar
I was excited to see RE’s first black protagonist in the form of Sheva Alomar, and I was not disappointed. Again, one of the action/horror video game tropes is to have the playable female character be weaker than her male counterpart and be more of a support role. However, Sheva was every part an equal to Chris, and was a female lead that girls and guys can definitely look up to. I would definitely love to see more Sheva in RE’s future because one game was not enough.

8. Billy Coen
If you have a thing for bad boys (lol me) then you would like Billy Coen. A wrongfully convicted felon on the run, Billy meets up with Rebecca Chambers and they work together to get through the horrors of Resident Evil Zero. I’m known to heavily prefer playing as the female character when given the option, but I ended up preferring to stick with Billy in this game. He was so cool, calm and collected, even when the world around him was falling to pieces. Plus, again… he’s a bad boy.

7. Jill Valentine
I’m sure Jill being at number seven may shock people, but hear me out. Like I said before, my introduction to RE was RE2, so my first character choice in badass females was Claire Redfield. If I were to discover RE1 or RE3 first, then I think Jill would be higher on the list. Jill was the very first female badass in this series, serving as the primary character in both of the aforementioned games. Jill is loyal, intelligent, and a mf go-getter. I mean, she took out Nemesis all by herself!

6. Leon Kennedy
Another name that people are probably expecting to be higher on the list is Leon S. Kennedy. I could probably attribute to this to my preference of Claire as well. In the original RE2, Leon seemed a bit dopey and naive; but from RE4 onwards, Leon had developed a more mysterious vibe that, while he has good and pure intentions, you still question whether he’s really that wholesome. And as mentioned before, we love a bad boy. Leon just has terrible taste in women. If she keeps zipping away from you, she’s not interested bro. Speaking of Leon and women, actually…

5. Ashley Graham
Definitely a name that people won’t expect to be on this list at all. What I loved about Ashley – besides the ‘Nikki loves hot blondes’ trope – is the fact that she’s realistic. Realistically if I was thrown into a zombie-filled city, I won’t be able to pick up a grenade launcher and gun down William Birkin like I was spending money at Gucci. Realistically, I couldn’t jump across buildings in a tube top and a skirt while also fending off Nemesis. I’m not equipped for that, and Ashley was portrayed as someone who was clearly not equipped for the horror that was presented to her. (Granted, I’d be able to do more than throw a lamp.) Plus, how iconic is her green plaid skirt and orange turtleneck outfit.

4. Carlos Oliveira
My love for Carlos really exploded with the RE3 remake. Let’s face it: in the original RE3, Carlos was sort of a forgotten character. He served his purpose and filled his role well as the loyal soldier who suddenly has to question everything they’ve been taught, but he was pleasant. And a pleasant soldier isn’t anything remarkable. In the remake, however, he was given a rugged new look with the most wonderful mop of hair I’ve ever seen, and his rough-tough exterior complimented his altered personality well. And good lord do I want Carlos to save me from a raging tyrant now.

3. Claire Redfield
My first introduction to the RE series came in Claire Redfield and her pink denim vest and shorts combo. In my opinion, Claire was dealt the roughest hand of all the major characters in the RE series: not only was she thrown into the dark with no real combat training, but she was also given the task to care for Sherry in RE2 and then Moira in Resident Evil: Revelations 2. To take care of yourself in an environment like this is hard enough, but to be entrusted with someone else’s child is another story, and Claire managed to do it twice while looking fierce AF. Claire is the cool biker chick we all wish we knew. RIP Elza Walker.

2. Chris Redfield
Would’ve easily been number one had it not been for one minor character, Chris is the poster boy for RE and it’s very easy to see why. The first male protagonist of the series, and the main character featured in most of the RE games, Chris is everything you would want in a survival horror game. He’s tough, he’s protective, he’s vigilant, and good lord is he hot. I mean, physically conditioned for the role. He’s likeable but not too unrealistic in his action-packed role, he’s the guy you would want on your team if you were thrown into a zombie-filled city. Plus I will punch on with anyone who criticises his RE5 re-design, because let me tell you right now that I’d much prefer to be protected by the boulder punching Chris than the awkward soldier boy haircut Chris.

1. Jessica Sherawat
This’ll shock everyone unless you really know me. Jessica Sherawat is everything that I am or want to be. She’s beautiful; she’s sassy; she’s stylish; and she’ll kick your ass in a one-legged wetsuit and heels. The fact that Jessica can go on a top class mission and still find time to flirt with her partner, wear phenomenal outfits, and mention her sweet ass really makes her the Diva of all Divas tbh. I would die for this Queen, and I’m anxiously awaiting for her return to RE gaming. Granted, she shouldn’t have betrayed the BSAA, but we all have faults. Come on guys.

Now I’m just picturing a new RE game where the main character is Jessica who tries to redeem herself with the good guys by embarking on some stylish adventure into zombie world. Yaaaasss bitch. Come through with the goods Capcom!

– by The Black Widow