Honesty is the best policy and TV has trumped our reading this month. The RUSSH editors have been feasting on vintage Justin Bieber, 90s Cameron Diaz and reruns of Suits. Meanwhile, others have clocked out of culture entirely, preferring to direct their attention to the Moroccan and Spanish vistas on their travels. Not that we can blame them. Below, everything the RUSSH editors have been watching, reading and listening to in June 2023.
Watch… I’ll be digging my teeth into the new season of Black Mirror as soon as I get a free moment. But probably only one episode at a time… I’m not sure my anxiety can handle a binge-watch.
Read… Continuing my expedition into food writing from last month, I have picked up a copy of Anthony Bourdain’s memoir Kitchen Confidential from Ariel Books in Paddington. Turns out Bourdain is as fearsome, witty and no-holds-barred in his writing as he is in front of a stove. Handwritten annotations from Bourdain throughout the book make for a deeply intimate reading experience.
Listen… I’ve recently jumped on the Remi Wolf bandwagon, having come across a video of her recent Coachella performance, where she does an acoustic performance of her song Cake. I can honestly say it’s one of the most gut-wrenchingly beautiful things I’ve listened to in a long time. I also had a first listen of King Krule’s new album Space Heavy yesterday, and it brims with all the things I love most about his music.
Digital Strategy Director
Watch… My engagement with most media has been somewhat dismal this month as I am travelling and working remotely. All I’ve managed to watch this month is Call Jane while on a flight. It’s the true story of a group of women who helped facilitate abortions for at-risk women in pre-Roe v Wade America.
Read… Honesty is the best policy. Other than Lonely Planet guides to Spain and Morocco and some emailed travel recommendations courtesy of editor in chief Jess Blanch, I have done next to no reading this month. There’s always next month!
Listen… I have however had plenty of time to listen to music. Lots of short flights and car trips has meant plenty of time to catch up on my backlog. First things first, when am I not listening to Stumps? They’ve just dropped a new single Life’s Moving Past You which I’ve had on repeat. Also, I’ve finally had a good chunk of time to really drill into the newest Death Cab for Cutie album. It came out last year, but Death Cab is one of those bands where I like to listen to the whole album in one go. As predicted, it’s great.
Watch… 90s Cameron Diaz rom-coms. My favourite of all time is The Sweetest Thing.
Read… This month I’ve been loving the Vegan JapanEasy Cookbook by Tim Anderson. There are so many good winter warming recipes in there. As a designer I’m also all for a good visual, and the cookbook not only delivers on the recipes but is also VERY pretty indeed.
Listen… It’s Barbie-core all round in my household as I countdown to July 20th. The song on repeat right now is Barbie World by Nicki Minaj, Ice Spice and Aqua. A truly iconic play on Barbie Girl. Dua Lipa’s Dance The Night takes a very close second. Great for the hot girl walks.
Creative Studio and Campaigns Manager
Watch… My June TV cup has runneth over, I’m struggling to keep up with all the shows I am watching. My list is currently Black Mirror (almost done, it’s good to have BM’s cynicism and darkness back), This Is Going To Hurt (a refreshing take on a medical drama, must be because it’s not American…) and The Idol (hate watching to keep up with the memes). Once I’m done with this list, I can’t wait to get back into And Just Like That Season 2, a guilty pleasure.
Read… With a watch list like the above, there is absolutely no time for reading.
Listen… Vintage Justin Bieber. Think the Purpose era with a smattering of Believe. We can’t have bangers like Beauty and a Beat going to an early grave, they are eternal.
Watch… I’m definitely behind the eight ball here but I’ve just discovered Suits and it has me in a chokehold. If you’ve already seen it then this is your sign to go back and rewatch it because they don’t make ‘em like this anymore.
Read… Does it count if I say that my TV sound is terrible so I’ve been watching Suits with subtitles on? It really does have me in a chokehold.
Listen… I just saw that Arlo Parks is touring next month so she’s my current vibe. I also did a road trip recently and tried to get into The Teacher’s Pet podcast – wasn’t a winner for me but a PSA that it’s back up on The Australian website if you’ve been waiting.
Arts & Culture Editor
Watch... Past Lives. I was lucky enough to catch a screening of the film at Sydney Film Festival and bawled my eyes out like a little baby. The main tension builds around whether Nora will choose her childhood sweetheart or her husband, but it's about so much more than that. Anchored by the Korean concept of In-Yun, the film explores destiny without succumbing to sentimentality or melodrama. Migrants will especially relate as Nora contemplates her own identity and what her life could have been if she didn’t uproot to America.
Read... Romantic Comedy by Curtis Sittenfeld. If your brain needs a break, I suggest dipping into this low stakes romance about a comedy writer from The Night Owls (a thinly veiled version of SNL) who falls in love with a famous Bieber-esque musician all grown up. Also, Cassandra, our production editor shared this New Yorker article recently that argues the case against travel. I'll be pulling it out as a shield this time every year from now (except of course when it's finally my turn to take to Europe).
Listen... Fiona Apple is for every occasion, especially impromptu concerts in the shower.