Culture Corner with Itzelth Gamboa

Culture Corner with Itzelth Gamboa

Photo Credits: AGGIE FILE

The Arts Desk’s weekly picks for television, movies, books and music

TV Show: “Locke and Key” (2020 Netflix Original)

The ten-episode Netflix fantasy series focuses on three siblings as they move into their father’s childhood home after his murder. The family moves into the ancient home that is rumored to carry a strange hold on people. As the series progresses, the siblings find magical keys that alter their life. But over time, the children discover that they’re not the only ones searching for new keys and other people are willing to pay a lot more for them. The show is based off of the comics of the same name written by Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez.

I wondered when I’d get a good Netflix show after finishing so many of its disappointments and I finally got it with “Locke and Key.” I loved “Locke and Key” and while a few characters just made me want to shake them until they gained some common sense, they are teenagers so I forgave their mistakes. Overall, I found myself being able to love everyone despite their flaws and that is a rarity when it comes to Netflix series.  

Movie: “Real Steel” dir. by Shawn Levy (2011)

Hugh Jackman and Dakota Goyo star in “Real Steel,” a movie that takes place years in the future that features gigantic robots fighting in the ring that have replaced real-life boxers. The movie follows dead-beat father Charlie (Jackman) and 8 year-old-son Max (Goyo) as they try to form a relationship over the summer after Max’s mom passes. When Max finds an old robot at a junkyard, he sets out to fight in a ring. But this is an opportunity for his father to find his way out of the piling debt and trouble that always seems to follow him. 

I have watched “Real Steel” over a dozen times. It has a little bit of action, a lot of sci-fi and a few heartwarming moments thrown in to make it perfect. I love seeing character development, especially when characters develop with each other and grow overtime; it’s what makes movies worth watching. 

Book: “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” by Suzanne Collins (2020)

“The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” follows Coriolanus Snow, future president of Panem in the hit “Hunger Games” series, when he was a young man trying to make a name for himself and drag his family out of filth. When he’s called upon to be a mentor for the Hunger Games, he sees it as his one chance to change his life for the better. But trouble strikes when he is assigned the girl from District 12, the one destined to lose. The story follows Snow on his journey with a feisty girl from 12 and how he rose to be the villain we all hate. 

While I would have much rather enjoyed hearing how Finnick or Haymitch or even Johanna went through the Hunger Games, it was nice to step into Collins’ world once again. This was something 16-year-old me never saw coming and I am not too sure how I feel about it. When I first heard the book was going to be about Snow, I was hesitant, but nothing can keep me away from another addition to “The Hunger Games.”

Album: “Jukebox the Ghost” by Jukebox the Ghost (2014)

I found these gems on Spotify after The Lumineers was on repeat. I’ve always loved the hints of old music being played with a mix of modern tunes and “Jukebox the Ghost” gives me exactly that. With slow romance songs that have a sudden switch to pop in the middle like “Hollywood” and dance beat songs like “Girl,” this album made its way to my heart in the matter of a day. The best part? They have acoustic piano versions of all of their songs on the album, which is a perfect switch when I need to do homework. 


Written by: Itzelth Gamboa — arts@theaggie.org