Monthly Archives: February 2021

Rodrigo’s Driver’s License Hits Home

Jacqueline Virasak ’21
EE Entertainment Editor

Olivia Rodrigo

–“I got my driver’s license last week, just like we always talked about.” 

One of the most notable events of January 2021 has  to be the release of Olivia Rodrigo’s record-breaking debut: ‘Driver’s License’. 

Olivia Rodrigo is a 17 year-old actress and singer-songwriter best known for her role as NiNi in the Disney+ original show High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. 

Fans were excited to see this completed song, which, along with many of her other unreleased music, was first shared on her Instagram Live.

The song ‘Driver’s License’ is a heart-wrenching pop song in which Rodrigo describes finally getting her drivers license-an event that she always talked about with an ex-lover , and her residual feelings for him even now.  

This song has gained considerable recognition for its powerful vocals, poetic lyrics, and breathtaking bridge, as well as the alleged drama surrounding the boy mentioned in it. 

The song has reached millions on the social media app TikTok, where teens and young adults have both dissected its meaning and raved about it. 

Her music has been called reminiscent to that of pop-sensation Taylor Swift. Rodigo, a self-proclaimed “Swiftie”, has referred to her idol on numerous occasions as one of her biggest musical inspirations. Taylor Swift herself even commented on one of her posts, congratulating its release, much to Rodrigo’s delight. 

Many other popular artists have also shared their support for her and her musical career. Their praise has led to attention from the media such as the New York Times, Billboard, Vogue, and countless other news sites.

Among THS students, there is a differing of opinions:

“I really enjoy the song. Although I can’t say I have experienced anything similar to it, the emotion in the song is incredible and allows the audience to connect with the artist no matter what,” said junior Madhuvanthi Krisha. 

After watching Rodrigo on HSMTMTS, she was curious in hearing the release and like many other fans of the show, she was not disappointed. 

 “Not impressive, not horrible, but overhyped to no end. [It’s] a very generic indie song” said  junior Adrish Das. 

He is uncertain as to why Rodrigo has received so much attention when, as he has pointed out, there have been many other young artists- like Lorde -who have released similar songs.

Personally, I was shocked and filled with pride to learn that she broke a Spotify record for most streams in a single day for a non-holiday song at 15.7 million-the fastest song in the platform’s history.

The attention of her unreleased music suggests that Rodrigo will not be a one-hit-wonder. Teens everywhere are looking forward to seeing her upcoming album and future growth as an artist.

COVID’s Effect on the Entertainment Industry

Thomas Ou ’24
EE Staff Writer

It seems as if nothing can be saved from the curse that is COVID, and this remains true when it comes to the Entertainment Industry. The  past year has brought about many delays with major movie releases as well as popular television shows. TV shows that used to have live audiences are forced to make do with empty studios or have their production temporarily suspended. Video game releases are being pushed back with major video events such as E3 and the Tokyo Game Show as well as music festivals like the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival and most other concerts being canceled. The entertainment industry has taken a big hit as a result of the disease, and only time will tell how the ripple effects of this will alter the future of entertainment.

It’s no surprise that movies are forced to take a production halt due to the risks of filming in a deadly pandemic. A delay within one movie can lead to a production setback for the coming decades as evidenced by the entire Marvel Phase 4 being pushed back a full year. Before the pandemic, there had already been a decline in film attendance and it has now worsened in most major countries, leading to the major studios such as Warner Bros., Walt Disney, 20th Century Fox, Sony, and Universal going from releasing 20-25 major films in the 2000s to around nine in 2019 according to analysts.

The many downsides in this new age of entertainment have only been made worse by COVID. This virus has basically killed off the already-dying movie theaters, giving rise to the many online streaming services. While this could be looked at in a positive light, these numerous streaming services are really getting out of hand and it has no sign of slowing in the near future.

Streaming was created as an alternative to the expensive bundles that contain a bunch of useless shows and channels that come with cable TV plans. But now with the rising prices, each company taking their shows and putting them under only their services, and service-exclusive originals, the services have become the very thing they swore to destroy. Whereas before one could not watch Discovery Channel and NBC Sports without paying the $80 fee for both cables (as well as getting 50+ channels you won’t end up watching), nowadays one can not watch Umbrella Academy, The Handmaid’s Tale, Dickinson, Westworld, and The Mandalorian without paying for five different streaming services monthly (and now getting 500+ shows you won’t end up watching). While the TV industry is able to produce more original content every year, our wallets won’t be able to keep up with all the new services and , in the end, we will end up missing out on many great shows.

Winter Sports Begin

By Abigail Clark
EE Staff Writer ‘22

January 19th was an exciting day for athletes, as the winter sports season began. After making it through a successful and safe fall season despite the COVID-19 pandemic, athletes were eager for a new season to begin. 

This was a long awaited day for many. Due to the coronavirus, the start date for winter sports in the CIAC was pushed back multiple times. Although this was unfortunate for athletes, safety was the number one priority for healthcare and government officials. Thankfully, cases began to drop, so athletes were able to start practicing.

All teams have specific Covid precautions to keep the whole team and others around as safe as possible. Before practice, individuals must fill out a daily “Self-Screening Checklist.” Athletes must indicate that they have no symptoms of the virus and are following traveling guidelines in order to safely practice with the team. 

For indoor and outdoor sports, masks must be worn at all times, including active playing time. The only exception to this is the swimming and diving team. Even though this rule is a challenge, following these guidelines is keeping everyone safer. 

“As long as all rules are followed, our team will be putting in the work!” said senior Keira Grant, who is conditioning with the lacrosse team at this time.

Being in cohorts is another important tactic larger sports teams are using. Cohorts are made within each specific team. If someone within one of the cohorts gets the coronavirus, only the infected group has to quarantine. This allows for more of the team to stay safe and still be able to practice. Cohorts also have given athletes the opportunity to become closer with those in their group. 

Coach McCaffrey, the head coach of the girls indoor track and field team, has been organizing fun events for the girls to participate in such as a scavenger hunt. “When it comes to having a season that’s out of the ordinary, you have to think of different ways to engage your athletes and keep them happy,” McCaffrey said.

February is African American History Month

Kylie Totten ’24
EE Staff Writer

Banner of the National Archives website which holds a wealth of material documenting the African American experience:

This month marks the 45th annual African American History month. With all the racial justice protests that have occurred throughout 2020 and 2021 in the United States, it is a fitting time to spread awareness about the struggles African Americans have been through to earn their freedom.

Since 1976, the month of February has been devoted to recognizing and celebrating the achievements of African Americans and their role in United States history. Countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Canada and the Netherlands have joined the United States in dedicating a month to the celebration of African American history.

The month-long celebration started as just a week in 1925. Originally called “Negro History Week”, it was an annual celebration that took place during the second week of February. This week was specifically chosen to coincide with the birthdays of African American advocates Abraham Lincoln and Fredrick Douglass. The Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH) was responsible for the creation of the event.

The ASALH organization was founded on September 9, 1915 by Carter G. Woodson. Woodson is considered to be the “Father of Black History” and was one of the first scholars to study African American history. Woodson created the ASALH to study and educate people about the history and achievements of black Americans.

Students Cheer Midterm Cancellation

Christina Kingan ’23
EE Staff Writer

Although they may be covered, the smiles of high school students as they walk down the halls indicate the joy felt by the realization that midterms will not occur this year. This decision reflects the highly unusual and unprecedented school year that students were forced to adjust to. With the burden that virtual learning brings, students’ lives have become much more stressful and demanding.

As such, Trumbull High School has graciously decided to eliminate midterm exams for this school year, easing the burden on students. Many students are thankful for this decision.

“Not having midterms was such a weight off my shoulders”, said sophomore Alessia Ferraro. “It was definitely a challenge adjusting to remote learning. Participating virtually has had an impact on my learning this year so far”, she added. “That being said, I feel I would not be prepared to take midterms”.

This year, unlike any other, has been hard for all students, as Ferraro emphasized. As online learning has limited students from going through the normal high school school experience, most students feel unprepared to succeed on midterms, due to the unfamiliarity of the current situation and how it has affected them mentally.

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