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Billie Eilish (left) became a household name in the music industry, while Boston won two more championships including the Red Sox World Series title led by outfielder Mookie Betts (right).

This article contains opinion.

Some things in culture stayed the same compared to last year. Superhero movies and sequels are still big headlines.

The biggest change was in music, where a new global star arose in Billie Eilish.

Althogether, this past year had many highs and lows in media when it came to movies, music, sports and more.

Movies

Movie theaters had Marvel, DC Comics, Harry Potter and Disney fans alike flocking to theaters. 

With movies, DC hit it big with its fans. 

“Aquaman” was released in December, centering around Jason Momoa’s character discovering he is the heir to Atlantis. The movie was the third to star the character of Aquaman, after “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” in 2016 and “Justice League” in 2017.

Marvel, likewise, had fans racing to theaters in April with the release of “Avengers: Endgame,” the conclusion to the Infinity Saga. As the sequel to “Avengers: Infinity War,” released in 2018, “Avengers: Endgame” broke box office records by crossing the $2 billion mark in record time, according to CNN.

Disney fans who grew up with the 1964 movie “Mary Poppins” were able to relive their childhoods with the release of “Mary Poppins Returns.” With a bit of modernization and big-name stars like Emily Blunt and Lin-Manuel Miranda, as well as new songs, the movie was a hit with $172 million in the box office.

Music

Fans of Ariana Grande looked forward to the release of her newest album, “thank u, next,” which became a way of healing for the singer/songwriter as she worked through the death of her ex-boyfriend, rapper Mac Miller, as well as a breakup with her fiancé, Pete Davidson. The title track peaked at the top of the charts and became Grande’s first No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. 

Grande’s song “7 rings” was released Jan. 18 and quickly peaked at No. 1 in 15 countries. She beat her own record later with her album release featuring her song, “break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored.”

Billie Eilish also broke records this year with her debut album “WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO?” Released in March, the album quickly debuted at No. 1 on the U.S. Billboard 200, right behind Grande’s “thank u, next.”

And the Jonas Brothers made their comeback with the release of their song, “Sucker” in March. The song was the first single released by the brothers together in six years, and it reached No. 1 in eight countries.

Streaming services

 

Netflix recently released May’s “Coming and Going” list.

In 2018, Netflix released a documentary about Ted Bundy called “The Ted Bundy Tapes.” Now, from the same director, comes a new film. 

“Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile” stars Zac Efron as the famous murderer and Lilly Collins as his girlfriend who believed for years that Bundy was innocent.

The Netflix Original Series, “Stranger Things,” is expecting its third season this July that will follow on the happenings after the “mega-monster” from the Upside Down nearly destroyed Hawkins, Ind.

Local

IUP also had many events this past year, which seemed focused on de-stressing students and helping them relax during rough times. With therapy dogs, de-stressing fests and events to help with the support and advocacy of groups, IUP has taken great strides in supporting its students and the lives they live away from home.

STATIC (The Student Activity Committee) provided students with two concerts, one in each semester.

First was the homecoming concert in October that featured Playboi Cardi, Rich the Kid and Waka Flocka Flame. The event took place at the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex (KCAC). 

The second was Young M.A. The event took place in March during IUPatty’s week in the Hadley Union Building (HUB) Ohio Room. 

 

Sports

Boston is the new city of champions. It had two more parades this school year. 

Starting with the Red Sox, it was a historical season to say the least. The team won more than 100 games for the first time since 1946, and its 108 wins were a franchise record. 

The team was led by American League (AL) Most Valuable Player (MVP) Mookie Betts in the outfield, pitcher Chris Sale and first-year manager Alex Cora.

They played the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series and won in five games. It became the fourth championship in the last 15 years and ninth in franchise history.

Next was the Patriots, who started the season 1-2. The team then went on to win eight of the next nine on the way to winning its 10th straight division title. 

The ageless wonder that is Tom Brady showed once again why he is the best quarterback of this generation. He passed for more than 4,000 yards and surpassed 70,000 for his career. Brady also passed Peyton Manning for most passing touchdowns in a career. 

The Patriots coasted through the playoffs to play the Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl. Just like in baseball, Boston would go on the raise the trophy. It was the sixth Super Bowl for Brady and coach Bill Belichick to put them tied with the Steelers for most Super Bowls all-time.

Boston could still have one more parade as the Bruins are still in the Stanley Cup playoffs.      

After the World Series was over, there was one thing on baseball fans’ minds. Where will players land? The class included two of the best players in the game in third baseman Manny Machado and outfielder Bryce Harper. 

The longer the offseason went on, the more people tried to speculate what would happen. Machado made the oppening move signing a 10-year, $300 million contract with the San Diego Padres. 

The deal shocked the baseball world. It was expected that he would stay on the West Coast after spending the final half of the season with the Dodgers. He instead decided to go after the guaranteed money with the Padres. 

A couple weeks later, the other big name was off the board. Harper, a former Washington National, decided to take his talent to the in division rival Philadelphia Phillies. 

He signed a 13-year, $330 million contract that will keep him on the team in his late 30s. This deal solidified the impressive offseason for the Phillies that also added shortstop Jean Segura and catcher J.T. Realmuto. 

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