Pulse of the Nation: Award show season

Elliot Williams

Oscar and Grammy season is upon us. But these award shows don’t always capture the true sentiments of college students, as you will see from the “Pulse of the Nation,” a monthly poll of Villanova students about pop culture. The average Villanova student is much more in tune with movie, TV and music releases than you may realize.

When asked, “How often do you watch movies?” a quarter of the polled Villanova students replied “Very Often.” About 60 percent “occasionally” watch movies, and only 10 percent “rarely” watch movies.

When asked, “Which film, released in the last 3 months, was your favorite?” 43 percent of respondents said “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”, the clear winner of the winter season. Both “The Revenant” and “Creed” got 11 percent of the votes, respectively. Honorable mentions went to “Concussion,” “The Big Short,” “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 2” and “Spotlight.” 

When asked, “What is the worst film you have seen over the past three months?” students had some very interesting responses. Here were the best ones:

“Dan in Real Life” (released in 2007); Quentin Tarantino’s “The Hateful Eight;” Others responded, “I don’t remember… probably because it was bad;” “I don’t watch bad films;” “Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2;” “I didn’t see the Krampus, but it looked really bad;” “Joy- It could have been much better;” “Whatever my roommate has on;” “Santo vs. la invasión de los Marcianos” (whatever that is) and my personal favorite, “Jem and the Holograms.” Unfortunately, for all the Tina Fey and Amy Poehler fans out there, almost 12 percent said “Sisters” was their least favorite movie of the season. 

Villanova students said they are most looking forward to seeing “Zoolander 2,” “Captain America: Civil War,” “Suicide Squad,” “Snowden,” “Finding Dory,” “Superman vs. Batman,” “How to Be Single,” “The Legend of Tarzan,” “Star Wars: Rogue One,” “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” and “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2.”

The best answers were in response to the question, “Which actor/actress should win Best Actor/Actress at this year’s Academy Awards?”. Favorite actresses were Brie Larson, Jennifer Lawrence and Cate Blanchett. But students pointed out that no actors or actresses of color were even nominated. Many said that Michael B. Jordan deserves the award for his performance in “Creed.” Others put “Star Wars” actor John Boyega. Another replied “#OscarsSoWhite so it doesn’t matter.” Will Smith of “Concussion” was also mentioned multiple times. One respondent threw Morgan Freeman in the mix, just because. However, a full 65 percent of polled students said the award should go to Leonardo DiCaprio. Michael Fassbender from “Steve Jobs” got the honorable mention. One student said that “Leo shouldn’t win, just for the story.”

When it came to television, students remain loyal to classics like “The Office” and “Friends,” and listed “How to Get Away With Murder,” “Empire,” “Bob’s Burgers,” “Jane the Virgin,” “Master of None,” “Scandal,” “Narcos” and of course, “Villanova Basketball” as their TV hits of the season, among others. 

Lastly, the hottest music at The Nation is Adele’s “Hello,” “I Took A Pill In Ibiza” by Mike Posner, “Cake By the Ocean” by DNCE (aka Joe Jonas), “Stressed Out” by Twenty One Pilots (remember when they played here in 2013?), “Love Yourself” by J Biebs, “Pillow Talk” by Zayn, and the double release of “Black Friday” by Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole.

Lastly, one student responded with “SportsCenter” when asked what musician they are listening to currently.