• MDBP Interview: Swizzymack

    Over the weekend we headed out to Mad Decent and got a chance to talk to Swizzymack about his beats, Philly and, of course, his mom.
    Interview by Ally Mullen

    Introduce yourself! Tell us your name and a little about yourself.

    Hi, I’m Swizzymack. I’m from Philly and I’m 18. I make beats and DJ.

    When did you start making beats and getting interested in music?
    I’ve always been interested in music. When I was like... 15 I got really interested in electronic music, so ever since then. Over the years I sped up the tempo and now my tempo’s like 160, that’s like the fastest I go. It’s pretty fast.

    Who are some of your favorite artists and people that you’ve looked up to?
    Growing up I liked DJ Get Em, he’s one of the younger Philly club producers. He’s only like 20. And a whole bunch of other younger Philly club people that make crazy music. I don’t really know their names, they just put a lot of their stuff on Soundcloud.

    Do you put a lot of your stuff on Soundcloud? Is that where we can find it?
    Yeah, at Swizzymack. You can also find me on Twitter at Swizzymack.

    What’s it like playing the Mad Decent Block Party in Philly when you’re from Philly?
    It’s crazy! I brought my mom and my grandma and my aunt and my sister! They’re all backstage. It’s just more meaningful to me. It’s a crazy experience. Like my mom got to see me DJ in front of all those people. It’s crazy.

    Did they believe you when you told them you were as big as you are?
    My mom doesn’t believe when I say I’m going to a different place to do stuff like this. She’s like, “You’re lying, you’re probably at your friend’s house!”

    What’s been the highlight of your day so far?
    Everything! Everything so far. It’s just been like, the best day ever.

    Out of everyone playing today, who else do you think everyone should check out?
    Dirty South Joe. Obviously Diplo. [Laughs.]

  • Live Grateful Dead Playlist

    In honor of Sunshine Daydream, I asked Mason, the biggest Dead fan in the office, to create a playlist for us of epic proportions. Below, learn more about Mason's history with the band, and then listen to his "Live Grateful Dead Playlist" to hear what his almost perfect live set would be. —Ally

    "Hi everybody, I'm Mason! I'm going to start out by giving you a little background into my history with the Grateful Dead, which may explain why I chose to create a live Spotify playlist for you. 

    From the years 1989 to 1994, I had the pleasure of seeing the Dead preform a little over 200 times, though I couldn’t be bothered with 1995... (Although in retrospect I would go see ANY show at this point, just to hear Jerry Garcia play again.)  Recently, I find myself revisiting older shows and I love the resurgence of Deadhead culture—especially the weird Simpsons and Wes Lang stuff. 

    I think everyone should experience the music! You should give them a try by going online and learning all about first sets vs. second sets, encores, the Spinners, parking lots, “Shakedown Street,” veggie burritos, traveling, the folklore surrounding certain songs, the Wall of Sound, what the Steal Your Face is, JGB etc… The Dead are truly an American sub-culture!

    The Playlist
    I've created a playlist full of live songs performed by the Grateful Dead, separated into two "sets," in which I have formatted what I would almost call my perfect show. To begin, I have started out with a traditional format for GD shows: going back and forth between Bobby and Jerry, and I lose it a little at the end of the “first set”, which ends with the song "The Music Never Stopped."

    Within the "second set," I've picked a special track for you: a nice lengthy “Jam” from Philadelphia in August of 1974. Overall, you should note that I prefer Jerry Garcia to Bob Weir, so this list weighs more heavily towards Jerry songs. (In the perfect world with the perfect show I can do that! Haha.) As most fans will see, the list lays heavy into the early 1970s, but I tried to use a few songs from the '80s and '90s as well just to give you, the listener, a perspective of the Grateful Dead’s range over the years—even if you have never listened to them. 

    Now sit back, put one up for Ol’ Jer, Wave that Flag and listen to the music PLAY!"

    Listen to the Live Grateful Dead Playlist here!
  • Pull List: July 31, 2013

    Oh my God, you guys! This is our last pull list together! I'm going to be sincere for only a second, and not a moment more. There's so many different things out there that are related to comics. There's no way we would have touched on them all in just a month. I hope you made it out to your local shop and/or Amazon and picked up a few things. Ok, have a nice summer! BFF4EVA, KIT! Christina

    1. Justice League The New 52 Wonder Woman vs. Katana 2-Pack Action Figure from DC Direct
    Figures of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy from the video game Arkham City are also available today. Ivy looks like she has a skin disease. Soooooo sexy.

    2. Issue #12 of It-Girl & The Atomics from Image Comics

    Series finale, kind of a bad time to jump into a new comic. Just buy it for the art. Mike Allred is the current artist for Marvel's FF. His work is beautiful.

    3. Volume 1 of Ghost from Dark Horse Comics
    Kelly Sue DeConnick and Phil Noto? How did I not know about this? What is wrong with me?

    4. Capote in Kansas from Oni Press

    Did you guys ever read In Cold Blood? No? Um, did you ever see Capote? Oh, well . . . long story short: the guy who wrote Breakfast at Tiffany's (a.k.a. that Aubrey Hepburn picture) also wrote the first non-fiction novel about a quadruple homicide in a small Kansas town. It's because of Truman Capote that we have Investigation Discovery and for that, I will always be thankful.

    5. Issue #14 of Captain Marvel from Marvel Comics
    I wonder if I actually planned ahead, if this whole month would have been a disaster. I should wing it more often.
  • DIY Cosplay: Captain Marvel

    Let's take our lazy cosplay to the next level. We're going to transform a piece of Urban clothing into Captain Marvel's new uniform. Just follow these simple and easy-to-comprehend steps. I would like to preface this post by saying that blogging is a completely different skill set from technical writing. Christina

    First, research the character. Between multiple artists, cartoon or movie appearances, costume updates, or fan recreations, there will be several different versions of your character's costume. If you have trouble getting a full view of the costume from official art, try checking out fan art, toys and statues, or other cosplayers. (Checking out other cosplayers may all help you figure out tricky parts of the costume. These characters tend to have idealized bodies wearing fabric that fits in impossible ways.) Here's what I found for Captain Marvel:

    The costume's primarily navy with yellow and red accents. It has raglan sleeves with red piping along the sleeve seams. She wears gloves that reach mid-forearm; each glove has five gold buttons on it that go from the edge of the glove to the wrist. There are two matching buttons on the collar. She has an eight-pointed star on her chest that is matched by the medallion closure on the sash. There are two yellow stripes that go around the upper chest, back, and arms. They form a V in the front and on the arms. There is a black or navy gap between the stripes and around the star on the chest.

    The gold V on the back mimics the shape of the front. The red sash rides high on the right hip and low on the left hip. Here the boots are high heels and reach mid-calf.

    In this picture, the raglan seam and the piping are lower on the side. The gold zipper is long; it reaches from the bottom edge of the collar to the crotch. She has flat red boots with seven more matching gold buttons. (It's six gold buttons on the very first picture of this post.) Unlike her previous costume, the ends of the sash are short.

    Next, be honest with yourself. Decide which one you like best and which one would be best for you. I don't believe in that bullshit that you should only cosplay characters that match your body type/skin color/gender/whatever. At the same time, cosplay can be a lot of work and a lot of money. Don't bother working your ass off on a body armor bikini if the idea of showing that much skin in public makes you freak. Also use this time to decide if you want to carry any props such as weapons. It's a different skill set from making a costume and you may need to budget more time.

    Being honest with myself, I do not have the time nor the money to make the full Captain Marvel costume. Especially not the money. I don't even really feel like making the sash, the medallion, or the gloves. So, we're gonna keep this one easy. We're taking a hoodie and adding some cheap fabric and notions to it. Imagine Captain Marvel on her day off, hanging around the Avengers mansion in her sweatpants with Spider-Woman. That's the look I'm going for.

    Now let's make some stuff! I'm going to use a sewing machine but if you feel more comfortable painting on the fabric or hand sewing or knitting, do that instead. The point is to have fun, not to drive yourself insane. We're going to use this BDG hoodie as our base:

    BDG Speckled Raglan Zip-Up Hoodie

    I would take a picture of myself wearing it, but I haven't showered in three days. I look and smell like Swamp Thing.

    Besides being super warm and comfy, it already has raglan sleeves and comes in the perfect shade of navy. The zipper is white and silver instead of gold, but zippers can always be replaced. Same with the drawstring. You will also need:

    1/2 yd each of red and yellow knit fabrics 
    pencil and paper

    The rectangle on the sweatshirt is a packet of red piping, meant to highlight the raglan seams. As I went on, I decided against using it. I felt like ripping open seams was a little too much work for lazy cosplay.

    Get out your pencil and paper and start sketching. With my ruler, I measured the different pieces of the sweatshirt: front, back, and sleeve. Be sure to mark seam allowancesfold lines, the top of the pattern piece vs. the bottom, etc.; mark anything that will help you keep the pieces straight and will help you remember how they go together.

    This is my sleeve. For me, the sleeve was the trickiest part of the sweatshirt. I bet it's really easy for you, isn't it. I marked the fold line (top of photo) and I added a 1/2" seam allowance (bottom of photo). Seam allowances are usually between 3/8" and 5/8". Make sure you keep them all the same width. 

    This will be the part of the project where your cat will get angry that you're not paying attention to her. She does not forgive and she will never forget.

    When you have your basic pattern pieces drawn, that's when you start color blocking. Keep your research materials close by. We have the red shoulders, a yellow star, two yellow stripes, and the navy/black gaps. I started with the star. It's the part of the costume that grabs the eye. The problem, of course there's a problem, is that I couldn't get the star to look how I wanted. The angles were all wonky and some points were longer than others. Thank God for the internet.

    I Googled "captain marvel star" and printed out a Marvel cover in three different sizes.

    I cut out all three and pinned them to the sweatshirt one by one until I decided on which one I liked and where I wanted it to be on the sweatshirt.

    Measure from the top of the zipper tape to the top point of the star. Use that measurement to properly place the star on your pattern piece. Remember that the star is split vertically by the zipper, so you'll only be tracing half of the star. If we go back and look at our research, we see that stripes don't match up exactly with the points of the star. The center gap doesn't match up with the concave part of the star either. 

    As you can see, I drew the star and the stripes before changing my mind and moving it all a few inches lower. Don't be afraid to make a mess of your pattern. 

    To make sure that the stripes line up, I cut out the pattern pieces (last chance to add seam allowances!) and matched up the seams. You can line up your ruler with the stripes and just continue you them onto the sleeve. Because of the angle of the stripes and the fold line of the sleeve, the stripes will automatically form the V shape. Do the same with the sleeve and the back pattern piece.

    I deleted the photo that showed the next step because it was blurry and never took a better shot. You see those stripes? Imagine them even longer and going towards the right.

    For the gaps between the stripes, we're gonna use negative space instead of cutting narrow strips of fabric. Using your ruler, draw parallel lines next to your stripes to form the gaps. Mine are 1/8" wide. Do the same for the stripes on the sleeve and back pieces and the star.

    I colored in the lines to better visualize the negative space. At this point, you may also want to mark which pieces are red and which are yellow.

    Cut out your red and yellow pattern pieces, leaving the negative space behind. Fold your fabric in half and lay out your pattern pieces. If they move around a lot, you can pin them to the fabric or weigh them down with soup cans. 

    All of the back and sleeve pieces will be cut on the fold. Remember to cut two of the sleeve pieces. The front pieces will not be cut on the fold; you will need two of these pieces are well. Starting with the red pieces, pin then sew them together and then pin them to your sweatshirt.

    Do you guys see the error I made? Like I said earlier, the sleeves were the trickiest part for me. The sleeves ended up being pointy at the neck seam and slightly too big.

    See? Too much fabric on the shoulders. If this happens to you, feel free to either redraw and recut your fabric or dart the hell out of it. If you dart, your seams will not line up like you hoped.

    Not only did I feel like Pinhead, I stuck myself so many times with these pins that I ended up bleeding. I suffer for this blog.

    Using the pins, I marked 1/8" from the bottom of the red piece. I recommend pinning the star in place next. Mark 1/8" around the star. Sew the pieces of the top stripe together then pin that whole piece to the sweatshirt. You may have to re-pin the star and the stripes several times to get everything in the right places. Take your time. What's your rush? New York Comic Con's not until October. 

    Sew the top stripe in place. Mark 1/8" from the bottom of the top stripe.

    No one wanted to model this for me. Note: get different friends or get much better at selfies.

    Did you know that sewing professionals don't use pins? When you're a pro, pins just slow you down or break your machine.

    Sew together the pieces of the bottom stripe then sew it onto the sweatshirt. Finally, sew on the star.

    At this point, your cat will enact her revenge by farting on your sewing machine table and stinking up the whole room. What a jerk.

    And we're done with the sweatshirt! Mostly. You can keep working on it by trimming any uneven stripes, finishing the edges with a satin stitch or some other embroidery stitch, adding buttons, or using a scarf as the sash. Make it as complicated as you like. I'm stopping here so I still have time to play Tomb Raider.

    So dainty with the drawstring.

    This kind of looks like a Captain Marvel Romper.

    To finish the Captain Marvel look, try styling you hair with VERB Sculpting Clay and pinning it back with Hershesons Get A Grip Hair Pin. Her makeup is pretty light. Try bh cosmetics 28-Shade Neutral Eye Shadow Palette and NYX Extra Creamy Round Lipstick in Chic Red or Ulysses. 

    Now that I've made this semi-prototype, I'm pretty sure I'm going to make the full suit for Halloween. It feels right. And I want those boots.
  • UO x Sunshine Daydream

    Hey deadheads (and those who want to get on the bus)! We're giving away tickets to the special screening on August 1 of the unreleased Grateful Dead concert film, Sunshine Daydream! Want to win a pair of miracle tickets? Then hit up your local UO at 5PM tomorrow, July 31, and be one of the first five people to find the UO Sales Associate wearing tie-dye to win two free tickets! P.S. Sunshine Daydream is only playing in select cities. Click here to see if your city is one of them!

    To get you in the right mindset for the hunt, drop some acid, put on your headphones, and listen to this killer playlist our music team has put together just for you, filled with all of your favorite tracks!

  • Lazy Cosplay: Static

    Virgil Ovid Hawkins (hope you're up to date on your ancient Roman poets) is your typical teenage dork. He hopes to get back at some bullies who were hassling him but instead gets trapped between rival gangs. The cops show up, unknowingly release teargas that has been tainted with a chemical called Quantum Juice, and electromagnetic Static, along with other mutated teens, is born. Once belonging to Milestone Media, Static has since been absorbed by mainstream DC continuity where he has starred in his own cartoon and comic, as well as many other series. Static mixes his superhero wear with everyday accessories like baseball caps and long, dramatic coats. Expect a lot of yellow and blue with lightning motifs. Christina

    Brixton Rift Snapback Hat
    It even has a centered X on it.

    Ray-Ban Justin Youngster Wayfarer Sunglasses
    I have this problem where sunglasses make me look like a giant douchebag. I would never wish my plight on anyone. Except, you know, giant douchebags. These are cool, though.

    Lightning Bolt Shop Tank Top
    There's a long sleeve version as well. You can put so many tiny things in that pocket.

    Patagonia Torrentshell Jacket
    This jacket might be the brightest article of clothing in the entire Men's section of the website. Perfect for Static.

    Levi' 511 Skinny Stonewashed Twill Pant
    These pants will be perfect to complete the ensemble.

    Hawkings McGill Ripple Chukka Boot
    Chukka is a real word, just in case you were wondering.
  • Featured Brand: VERB

    Hello, and welcome to our first featured brand post! In case you didn't notice, we have a ton of beauty products on our site, and a lot of them may be brands you've never heard of before. Our featured brand posts will help shed some light on these smaller, more mysterious brands.

    First up is the VERB haircare line. VERB is made in Austin, TX, and it focuses on providing inexpensive but good products. We love this line because there aren't any sulfates or parabans in these products to damage your hair. Here are three of our favorites from the line! —Katie

    VERB Sea Spray
    This sea spray is amazing, and I'm not just saying that. Like, I am going to scream, "I'M IN LOVE, I'M IN LOVE, AND I DON'T CARE WHO KNOWS IT!" from the rooftops over this. Where other sea sprays might leave your hair feeling crispy, this stuff leaves your hair super soft. It also smells delicious, like how the beach would smell if there were no fish or sweaty people. Here is a picture of it in ACTION:

    I am going to Lloyd Dobbler this sea spray salt and stand outside its house with a boom box playing "In Your Eyes," that's how much I love it.

    See how good it is!? It's like the perfect amount of tousling. And un-crispiness. I wish computers had a scratch & sniff function so you could also know how good it smells, but you'll just have to take my word for it since life isn't The Jetsons yet.

    VERB Ghost Oil
    If you're a fan of all the Moroccan oils that are floating around out there, then you'll definitely like VERB's ghost oil. This one is a blend of Argan and Moringa oils, and it absorbs almost instantaneously. The ends of my hair are fried from continuous straightening, but this oil makes my ends look a whole lot happier. I can see this being useful for dudes, too, if they don't like putting product in their hair but still want something to keep it shiny and healthy looking.

    BONUS USE: The other day I rubbed some around my cuticles and it made them look better, too. ALL-PURPOSE!

    VERB Finishing Polish
    This finishing polish is lightweight enough to be used on dry hair, which is awesome. Because for some reason, I just hate using product on my wet hair and then drying it. It's like, somehow it just always ends up gunkier than I wanted it to be. This finishing polish does the same as products you would blowdry in, but it's easier to control how much you're using, and you can make sure you don't end up a greaseball. I put this through all of my hair and it smoothed down flyaways and my ends. If you have finer hair, you'll want to use a lighter touch, but this is great for thick hair (which I have)!

    Here is my attempt to show you that the texture is like a very light cream.

    All in all, the VERB products I tried out were amazing, and if you're looking for good-smelling, cost effective products that are made in the good ol' US of A, then these are worth giving a shot, for sure. (Especially if you want to smell like a beautiful angel.)

    Shop VERB
  • Icona Pop "Girlfriend"

    Icona Pop released this video for their single "Girlfriend" a few days ago and it is delightful. Who doesn't love a fist-pumpin' song about lady friendship?! If you have a BFF, and I know you have a BFF, go clutch her to your bosom while you blast this song. —Katie
  • Blood is the New Black's Artist Book and Zine Fair

    Although this week may be the last week of the Blood is the New Black pop-up shop at Space 15 Twenty, (1520 N. Cahuenga Blvd) there's still a rad event you can totally attend on Saturday, August 3rd. Stop by the space for the Artist Book and Zine Fair, with live performances by Sadwich and Moses Campbell, plus more special guests. There will be lots of prints, zines, and books available from various artists, like Sara Lyons, Penelope Gazin, Dan Monick, and lots more! The event will run from 1PM - 5PM, and is hosted by a gal who makes way cool art, Penelope Meatloaf! Maddie
  • MDBP: Street Style

    On Saturday we went to Philly's Mad Decent Block Party at Penn's Landing and even though we weren't sure what to expect this year, we had a complete blast. (Dare we say we had a mad decent time? Hey-ooo!) While we were there, we obviously snapped some street style pics. The outfits ranged from raver-chic (furry boots!) to badass and girly. We saw a ton of crop tops and Chucks, along with some amazing accessories. Here are some of our favorite shots.

    Ran into Jahan Lennon as soon as we arrived!

    Seriously, bless these girls. It was hot out and they still committed.

    Loved these girls.

    Not sure if you can tell, but those holographic glasses have a great middle finger graphic on them.

    Jillionaire of Major Lazer.

    Loved whatever was happening on this pole.
  • Annie "Invisible"

    DO YOU GUYS REMEMBER ANNIE? She had that amazing song "Chewing Gum" that came out a million years ago (2004), then that other amazing song "My Love is Better" a few years ago, and now she's back with another great single, "Invisible." It's a little heavier on the electronic dance sound and lighter on the pop than, say, "Chewing Gum," but it's still a pretty bangin' single and definitely worth a listen. Especially if you're just trying to dance. —Katie
  • Comic Style: Hazel of Seconds

    Bryan Lee O'Malley's next book Seconds isn't out until 2014, but the Scott Pilgrim author has released a few sketches of the book's primary character, Hazel, who looks destined to become a certified comic style icon. O'Malley is very active on his Tumblr and in the past has written about finding character style inspiration in the fashion blogosphere. Early looks at Seconds seem to indicate the book may be grounded more in the "real world" than the superhero universe of Scott Pilgrim. Superpowers or not, Hazel looks to have the cozy-cute-girl (swoon) game on lock. Angelo

  • Music Monday: July 29, 2013

    No, this isn't a dream... we've brought the much loved Music Mondays back from the dead! With a new format relying fully on music-based websites like SoundCloud, we will be bringing you five awesome tracks every Monday morning to start your week out the way it's supposed to be started: with some awesome fuckin' music! Enjoy the second installment of our zombiefied feature and make sure to check back each Monday for the soundtrack of your week!

    Ben Khan - Drive (Part 1) 
    And now… another mysterious single on SoundCloud! Ben Khan has a lot of similarities to another artist whose debut LP was “stolen” and leaked a few months ago. His sound brings together all kinds of R&B elements like a great vocal hook and a smoothed out guitar track. We’re keeping an ear out for Ben Khan in hopes of hearing more of this magic in the near future!

    Blue Hawaii - The Other Day (Avalon Emerson Cybernetic Edit) 
    Avalon Emerson has been in the blog circuit for quite some time now with a solid handful of ‘90s-inspired dance originals. To add to her list are the Cybernetic Edits, and this particular edit—the most recent—is something to get lost in. It’s not very often that a seven-minute dance track can really suck you in ‘til the end, but this one certainly will. 

    AOSOON - Under 
    AOSOON is picking up a ton of speed off of their super recent EP release What Is This About. “Under,” the assumed single from the EP is fantastic. The delicate, youthful vocals, the vulnerable lyrics, and the thin (but well-placed) guitar strums don’t emerge into a lot more than you initially get, but some of the greatest songs are also the most redundant. For example: Washed Out’s “Feel It All Around.”

    Ellery James Roberts - Kξr✡u's Lament (犠牲)
    There have been a lot of ethereal, ambient, dream-synth “laments” recently, but a lot are missing something: Ellery James Roberts’ voice. This is a BIG track, both sonically and lyrically.

    Paula – Black Acura 
    Paula’s Relaxed Fit has the perfect amount of lo-fi, and just the right amount of charm. Having initially dropped the album last year, Etheral Sequences Records are reissuing this demo-like collection of pop tunes. “Black Acura,” the dead last track on the record, is anything but an after thought. Nice job, Paula! This is great.

  • Freak Folk Look Book

    Our newest men's trend draws inspiration from hippies the world over and combines surplus fabrics with fun neons and geometric shapes. It's totally going to be all you want to wear for fall. Here are some of our favorite outfit shots below, and some pieces to get you started with this trend.


    Get the look:

    Koto Jacquard Pocket Tee

    All-Son Canvas Rucksack

    Lightweight Beanie

    Koto Embroidered Jogger Pant

    Charles & 1/2 Camo Jacket

    Canvas Duffle Backpack

    Koto Cross-Stitch Denim Button-Down

    Rosin Foulard 5-Panel Hat

    Deter Printed Pullover Sweatshirt

    Character Hero Joe Sweater
  • Look Of The Week: Brian Seidman

    This week we took a trip over to the Cherry Hill, NJ store to find our Look Of The Week!

    Introduce yourself! What's your title here at the store?
    My name's Brian Seidman and I'm a sales associate here at the Cherry Hill store.

    What are you wearing today?
    A button-down short sleeve shirt and cut-offs. I think I might have gotten them at Pac-Sun? They were pants and I cut them into shorts. Because I needed shorts.

    Cool. Do you live around here?
    I live in Marlton. It's pretty close to here, like 10-15 minutes.

    What's your favorite thing to do there?
    In Marlton? There's nothing to really do in Marlton. I usually just hang out with friends there and play guitar. There is really not much to do there. [Laughs.]

    Do you like to go into Philly a lot?
    For concerts, yeah. Some of my favorite bands are Say Anything, The Front Bottoms, Wavves... those are probably the top ones.

    Where can we find you online?
    I have an Instagram! I'm not very active on it, but I have one. It's just my name, @brianseidman.

    Awesome. Thanks Brian!

    Stone Cold Fox

    Stone Cold Fox is an undeniably cool Los Angeles-based brand that mixes new style with just the right amount of vintage flare. Here, founders Cydney Morris and Dallas Wand tell us where they first met, who they'd dream of dressing, and where they want to take their brand next.
  • Bat Ladies

    Everyone's always talking about Batman and Robin the Boy Wonder. They're the ultimate crimefighting team. Through Robin, Batman gets to right the wrongs of his childhood. Batman's a pederast and Robin is his underage gay lover. I'm so over it. Here's a cheatsheet for just some of the ladies who work under the Bat symbol. Christina

    Barbara Gordon
    To the outside world, she's the librarian daughter of Gotham City Police Commissioner James Gordon. To those in the know, Babs is the mama bird of the dysfunctional Bat family and the boss of pretty much everyone else ever. She was the first Batgirl and after a run-in with the Joker that left her paralyzed from the waist down, she became Oracle. As Oracle, she ran the DC Universe due to her gigs with the Justice League and the Birds of Prey. She has since regained her mobility and is back on the streets of Gotham as Batgirl, bossing people around face to face.

    Cassandra Cain
    Let's get this out of the way first: Cass easily wears the creepiest Bat costume. But the gimp mask has a purpose! Cass is the daughter of David Cain and Lady Shiva, two premier assassins, and she was raised as the perfect fighter, responding only to body language. She could not read, write or speak. See, the mask is all poetic and whatever. Cass later learns English, gives the Batgirl mantle to her BFF Steph, and becomes the Black Bat

    Stephanie Brown
    She's been Spoiler, a superhero focused on spoiling the plans of the Cluemaster, her deadbeat villain father. She's been Robin, flying high over the city of Gotham. She's been Batgirl, where she came into her own and starred in one of the best Bat books ever written. Steph's had a quite depressing storyline and publication history but there are two things you must remember about this young woman: she doesn't buy into Batman's doom and gloom approach to life and she slapped Batman in the face after he came back from the dead.

    Kate Kane
    Kate is a Jewish lesbian that decided to become Batwoman after being kicked out of West Point under "Don't ask, don't tell." (Isn't it nice that her cutting edge origin story is now a tiny bit outdated?) There's more to talk about with her, but let's just look at the artBest art ever. 

    Bette Kane
    Bette is the younger cousin of Batwoman. As Flamebird, and later Hawkfire, she is Batwoman's go-to-girl. Guys, she kicks ass in ballet flats. Ok, not really but it's fun to pretend. Fun fact: Bette first appeared as Betty, the original Bat-Girl, in 1961. She worked with Batwoman back then too. She also constantly tried to kick it with Robin. Back when he unironically wore hot pants.

    Carrie Kelley
    She fights crime with a slingshot and fireworks while wearing the coolest glasses. Carrie is a Robin of the future, specifically the Robin from The Dark Knight Returns. She goes toe to toe with the Joker and his accomplices and wins! Hell, she even fights Superman. Future Batman may be a big ol' grumpasaurus (just like regular, present day Batman) but Carrie makes it work.

    "Batgirl Beyond"
    She's so mysterious! The newest Batgirl has popped up in Batman Beyond Unlimited, a digital comic based on the turn-of-the-millennium cartoon. (Don't you miss using "the millennium?") Who is she? What does she want? No one knows but Gotham City Police Commissioner Barbara Gordon (the older woman with the Carrie-Kelleyesque glasses in the background) is gonna find out.
  • The Physics "Take a Win"

    I've been bumping "Take a Win" by Seattle rap group The Physics since their album Tomorrow People dropped awhile back, and now there's an equally dope video to accompany the track. The Physics first entered my radar mainly because MC Thig Nat is one of the best dressed rappers in the game regardless of locale, but with tracks like this perfectly backdropping my summertime grind, the group has been popping up more and more in my daily iPod rotation. Keep an eye on The Physics as they look to become the new torchbearers of the eternally underrated Northwest hip-hop scene. Angelo
  • Who Wore It Best?: Bear Coat

    At Comic Con we saw a lot of bear coats. A lot of bear coats. Like, more than you would ever think you'd see. So we decided which ones were our favorites. Who do you think wore it best?

    Obviously this guy is the winner. He's got the pose. He's got the thing fully on even though it was probably way hot outside. He doesn't look like he wants to die. This guy is a bear coat star. A STAR.

    This might be the same guy. Not even sure. This guy is also rocking the hell out of this coat. Because maybe he's the same as the first guy.

    TWO bear coats in a 1 foot radius! That's how great they are! But like, c'mon, dudes. You gotta put the hoods up. A bear coat without the hood up is just a normal fur coat, and where's the fun in that?

    Maybe this photo is blurry because this guy was blurry IRL. Who knows? We don't. (Also, listen, it's hard taking paparazzi shots.) But at least the dude has the hood up. And for that, we commend him.

    IDK, we're just feeling sweaty and sad :( Cheer up, fella. Your bear coat is delightful.
  • Allyson Ahlstrom, founder of Threads For Teens

    Threads for Teens: Philadelphia

    Allyson Ahlstrom, founder of Threads For Teens, is more accomplished as a high school senior than I will ever be in my life. She's spent the entirety of her summer vacation on the road with her company, providing free clothing to girls who are in foster care, group homes and extreme situations of poverty. Over the summer Allyson and her friends and family will be hitting 48 states overall for a total of one city every day. That's seriously impressive!

    We caught the Threads For Teens truck as it was in Philadelphia today and were blown away by Allyson and her organization. Allyson and her company can see up to 30 girls every day for shopping appointments which means that they're helping out a ton of girls. If you'd like to follow their travels or find out how you can help, make sure to check out their blog! And if you'd like to see the girls in action, you can catch them on The Today Show after they finish up their tour in VT on August 5. We're so impressed by Allyson and wish her all the best in her future college plans. Seriously, so inspiring. YOU GO, GIRLS! —Katie

    Threads For Teens on tour truck

    Inside the truck

    Cute car, donated by Ford