‘The Post’ Review: A Perfectly Timed Retelling

Words: Natalie Keane

Releasing in theatres on January 12, The Post, directed by Steven Spielberg, tells the true story of Washington Post journalists in 1971, in the midst of the Vietnam War. The film portrays their efforts in publishing the Pentagon Papers to expose private information about America’s involvement in the Vietnam War, a topic that the Nixon administration had been hiding from America for almost two decades since the war had begun.

The movie focuses on the story of Katharine Graham, played by Meryl Streep, who is the lead publisher of the Washington Post and the first woman to be the publisher of a major American newspaper. For the Pentagon Papers to be published, she and editor Ben Bradlee, played by Tom Hanks, must gain on The New York Times as both papers strive to publicize strictly classified documents that the American government had been hiding for years. Doing this means risking their jobs, their company, and even their own freedom, to bring the truth to light.

The message of the film can significantly be related to current events, despite the event happening almost 50 years ago. It’s about the importance of the First Amendment, and the ongoing battle over how much power the government truly has over the media. This movie emphasizes that the press exists not to serve the government, but to serve those who live under it. And as it’s proven, democracy cannot exist without freedom of the press.

It relates to the conversation happening all across the country today, about the president himself being able to control or filter what is put into journalistic media. Whether it be television, radio, print, or even the internet, doing so would conflict with the powers that are given to him in the Constitution. This movie shows that it’s the responsibility of media and news sources to reveal matters like this to the public eye, and in our world today, this film stands as a reminder of how vital, and valuable, the truth can be.

The opinions stated in this article do not necessarily reflect the views and beliefs of the Wingspan staff as a whole.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Merriweather Post Pavilion Collapses

Words: Delanie Tucker

This past weekend, on January 13, the Merriweather Post Pavilion roof collapsed in the early morning.

According to Washington’s Top News, the roof collapsed at around 2:30 on Saturday morning. Thankfully, due to the time of the accident, no one was injured. The pavilion was being raised 20 feet as a part of a renovation but was not completed as originally planned.

After months of the roof being lifted to its anticipated height, it had finally reached the full 20 feet and was very close to being put in its final position.

Although this incident was obviously a major setback in the original plans, a new roof will be built, and the 2018 season will go on as planned.

Seth Hurwitz, a chairman of I.M.P, who is also operator of Merriweather Post Pavilion, told Top News, “Last night, in the middle of our months-long roof raising operation, the winds of fate prevailed and decided that, instead of simply raising the roof, we should go ahead and build a new one… Everything will be ready for season opening.”

Brian Bassett, the Senior Communications Strategist for the Howard County Public School System, is fairly confident in the fact that the pavilion will be up and fixed in no time for graduation.

“We have been in contact with Merriweather Post Pavilion and it does not appear that the roof collapse will impact high school commencement ceremonies. We will continue to stay in contact with Merriweather officials as plans are finalized and the new roof begun,” Bassett said.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Is Riverdale Downstream?

Words: Julia Stitely

The world of TV is expanding with more television shows, piquing people’s interest. 2017 brought us shows like The Handmaid’s Tale, GLOW, Legion and the new, popular CW show Riverdale. Riverdale, which caused massive buzz when it was first released, is entering into its second season. Many people and their grandmas have watched the show religiously, solving the mystery of Jason Blossom’s murder. Like every popular show, not everyone likes it. As more people watch it, more people find problems with the popular show.

One of the noticeable hatreds of the show are the differences from the original comics. The show is based on the 1939 Archie Comics. Many fans of the classic comics note that the show is “loosely” based on the comic, only having similarities with the names of characters and the town. Archie fans are angry with the lack of loyal source material. The contrast of the usual lightness of Archie comics and the darkness of the show is very noticeable. Other changes have included characters, one being Chuck Clayton. In the comics, he is a loveable cartoonist whose television counterpart is the total opposite, an athletic playboy.

Another famous change is to fan-favorite Jughead Jones. The controversy surrounding this character is not only because of his changed personality, but the change of his sexuality. Originally, in the comics, the hamburger lover identified as asexual. The creators and writers of Riverdale promised the fans that he was still asexual, but this became a lie in the finale of the first season. There is barely any representation in entertainment for people of his sexuality, and to have that gone from the show is awful.

With more and more shows being produced, more archetypes and plots are being overused. Riverdale is no exception to this. Viewers have seen the repeated cliches throughout the show, making it not stand out from other competing teen shows and movies. The love triangle has been tackled in things like Vampire Diaries and Hunger Games, and a murder mystery was taken from Pretty Little Liars. People have even noticed that there is a similar development of mean girl Cheryl Blossom to another redhead, Lydia Martin, from MTV’s Teen Wolf. The forbidden romance of Jughead and Betty was copied and pasted from Romeo and Juliet, which has been repeated multiple times in movies and television.

Even while taking cliches from other shows, Riverdale falls flat with its own plots. Many viewers, including fans of the show, disliked the ending of the first season, with the reveal of the murderer of Jason Blossom. They thought that it was anti-climatic and didn’t think the writers did well. Another part the show lacks is romance. There may be many hardcore fans that adore Bughead (Betty and Jughead) but they lacked development, suddenly getting together. The writing itself can be cheesy and lack a certain charisma at some points.

Now, am I saying that if you like this show you’re wrong? Of course not. We all have different opinions. You can love Riverdale, you can hate it, or you can be on the fence about it. People can separate the original source material from its adaptation while others can’t. Some can find annoyance with certain cliches and want something new, but others may like seeing the repetition of these plots and seeing what new things the writers can do with it. Viewers can ignore the cheesy dialogue and just enjoy it.

Do I think the show needs improvements? Of course. Nothing is perfect. Having a second season can allow Riverdale to improve some of its criticisms. They can develop the relationships more and the writing can improve. They can start new plots that will stray from classic tropes. We will see as the CW airs Riverdale episodes on Wednesdays.

The opinions stated in this article do not necessarily reflect the views and beliefs of the Wingspan staff as a whole.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Netflix’s Additions and Executions

Words: Julia Stitely

With the new year beginning, Netflix has announced their shows and movies coming to the streaming service this month and those leaving. It was a huge loss with many features being replaced by others.

A majority of the Batman movies, excluding Dark Knight and Dark Knight Rises, found a new home on the streaming service right as the ball dropped. Other movies that were added including the complete Godfather trilogy, The Bring it On films, and the Lethal Weapon series.

Throughout January, more TV shows are coming, such as the complete series of Episodes. Many Netflix original movies are premiering, like Before I Wake. Also their original shows are returning for a second season, for example, One Day at a Time.

Although there are awesome shows and movies being added, many didn’t make the new year cut. Grease and Chicago are dancing off. Some 80s and 90s classics like, E.T the Extra-Terrestrial, Gremlins, and Forrest Gump are leaving. The six seasons of Lost are gone by January 4th, and the popular teen comedy, Mean Girls, will also leave.

As sad as it is to see well-loved shows and movies leaving, there is a light. There is more space for creative and enjoyable forms of entertainment. Netflix’s viewers can be exposed to new movies and TV shows. What will you watch in 2018?

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Centennial Varsity Boys’ Basketball Charges Past the Mustangs

Words: Josh Horen

The Centennial Eagle’s Boys’ Varsity basketball team is now over .500 with a huge home win last night against the Marriotts Ridge Mustangs. An extremely slow start led to a very disciplined and complete finish for the Eagles as they beat the Mustangs 57-48.

Within the first three minutes of the ball game, the Mustangs jumped out to an early 8-0 lead.

The Eagles offense was completely stagnant despite the plethora of opportunities. They just could not get the ball to fall for them early in the game.

With 2:13 remaining in the first quarter, Centennial finally got on the scoreboard with a three-pointer made by Junior Stafford Smith.

The score at the conclusion of the first quarter was a shockingly low, 8-4, with the Mustangs holding a four-point advantage.

Both offenses were not capitalizing on good chances. Senior Hayden Ford was drawing a foul just about every time he set up in the low-post. He got good looks, but him and just about everybody else struggled in the first quarter.

The game started to take some shape in the second quarter however.

The Mustangs started the quarter off with a quick lay-up, which was answered by a pair of free throws and then a three-pointer by Senior Andrew Hohmann.

Early in the second quarter the Eagles switched to a 2-3 zone and that is when they really started to turn their defensive play into offense. They were creating turnovers and scoring off of them, which is something that gets the whole team into it and involved.

After a  basket made by Ford, the Eagles had their first lead of the game, they turned that into a 6-0 run to make the score 15-10.

The run included a beautiful finish by Senior Corey Eudell over two Mustang defenders, and a perfect spin move in the post by the big man, Ford.

Marriotts Ridge did not roll over then though.

They answered the Centennial run with a 5-1 run of their own and pulled to within one point of the Eagles.

Towards the end of the quarter the Mustangs and the Eagles traded three-pointers and the score was 22-18, Marriotts Ridge with less than a minute remaining in the quarter.

Eudell capped off a very productive second quarter with a coast-to-coast layup to pull the Eagles within two points of the Mustangs at the break.

Centennial picked up the pace offensively and after switching to the zone created more turnovers and converted them into points very effectively.

However, the Mustangs full court press towards the end of the second quarter pressured the Eagles a little bit and put them out of their comfort zone.

Nonetheless, Centennial was only trailing by two points at the break, 22-20, and drastically picked up their offense.

The second half was kicked off by a pair of Eudell and Smith three-pointers, to take a four-point lead with 6:45 remaining in the quarter.

The Mustangs battled back though, going on a 6-0 run with a pull-up jumper in transition along with a couple lay-ups.

Senior Shawn Hill answered the run with a lay-up of his own, only to be followed by a Mustang three-pointer.

Marriotts Ridge held a five-point lead, 33-28, with 3:13 remaining in the third quarter.

Hill took it down low, missed his initial shot, but battled for his own rebound and put it back himself to pull the Eagles within three points of the Mustangs.

After that, Junior Cam Berkeley made a lay-up, Eudell connected on yet another three-ball, and senior Jaden Williams made a lay-up to take a four point lead, 37-33.

Hill made another lay-up with four seconds remaining in the quarter for what was thought to be the last points of the third, but Marriotts quickly got down the floor and made a ridiculously deep three-pointer to make the score 39-38, Eagles at the end of the third quarter.

The Eagles largely dominated the fourth quarter.

Six different players scored for Centennial in that quarter and three of them had four points each.

The Eagles held onto their lead from the third quarter and never lost it the rest of the game. Centennial ended up winning the game by 11 points and had an extremely balanced scoring attack despite missing key offensive player, senior Sean Taylor.

Eudell led the way with 12 points, followed by Hill with 9, Smith with 8, and Ford also with 8.

This win marks the first time the Eagles have more wins than losses the whole season and they look to extend their winning streak to four games when they face Glenelg this Friday, January 7th.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Those Who Don’t Celebrate Christmas: What’s the Holiday Season Like?

Photos: Minah Mubasher and Harshitha Sayini / Words: Caroline Chu

Symbols of Christmas are everywhere. Blow-up figures of Santa dotting lawns, Christmas tree cookies sold at chain restaurants, and wreaths covering neighborhood doors are all commonly-seen images.

These symbols represent a vast majority of American beliefs. According to Gallup, 75% of Americans identify with a Christian religion. However, not everyone celebrates Christmas. This statistic seems to suggest that 25% of Americans, a sizeable portion of the United States, do not celebrate the holiday.

Members of this religious, or non-religious in some cases, minority may feel left out during the holiday season because of the fact that such an emphasis is placed on Christmas in American society.

Some of the people that fall under this blanket religious category are Amirah Elgendy, Jake Horen, and Zoha Fatima, all Centennial students.

Elgendy is a Sunni Muslim, and feels as though society is not as inclusive as it could be. She states, “[The holiday season] does not tie all religions together as well as it could because holidays like Hanukkah and Kwanzaa aren’t given as much attention during this time.” Horen, who is Jewish, echos similar beliefs in that he interprets holidays other than Christmas as still represented, but not to nearly the degree Christmas is.

Fatima, a Shia Muslim, sees things in a harsher light, believing that Muslim holidays are not represented well throughout greater American society, but also believes that this representation will increase over time.

However, the period from late November to January 1 is still overwhelmingly positive through the eyes of a few non-Christian Centennial students. Elgendy points out the fact that many people who aren’t Christian still celebrate Christmas, and that therefore, many Americans are tied together through widespread celebration.

Horen is similarly convinced that the holiday season, a season in which he is able to be an individual and celebrate Judaism, “brings everyone together.”

To him, this feeling of unity may ironically spring from the differences between groups of people. He believes that “everyone does their own thing in the holiday season, and who am I to try and change things up?” After all, these differences in viewpoint are crucial for the formation of identity and individuality.  

It’s important to remember that different religions still value many of the same principles, and time with family is an example of this. Because school is held during Eid, a Muslim holiday which can fall between November or December, Fatima is unable to visit Muslim family members living in London or Pakistan, which she wishes she could do.

During the same holiday, Elgendy does a special prayer with her family in the morning, and always celebrates with them by eating out. Like Elgendy, Horen uses a holiday he celebrates — Hanukkah — to connect with his family, lighting the menorah and saying prayers with his close relatives.

Concepts like closeness with family may allow for an expansion in recognition of winter holidays other than Christmas. Elgendy has a hope for the future of the United States of America: an expansion in knowledge of differences. She comments, “[Americans should] stay educated on the multiple other religious holidays during the holiday season, and recognize them.”

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.

Centennial Drops Second Home Game of Season to Reservoir

Words: Josh Horen

The Centennial Eagles started their Wednesday night game on January 3 out of rhythm on offense and never got on the right track, losing to an undefeated in-county Reservoir Gators, 62-52.

The game started off with an incredibly slow pace and turnovers by both teams.

Both the Eagles and the Gators seemingly could not get their shots to fall in the first quarter, ending the quarter with a low score of 13-10 Reservoir.

Senior Kaleb Addisu, who had four points, followed by fellow seniors Andrew Hohmann and Jaden Williams who had two points each, led the scoring attack.

Senior Hayden Ford’s scratch from the line-up definitely had an impact on the lack of scoring and rebounding; he was unable to play because he missed the school day. On top of that, Centennial’s rebounding proved to be a huge problem during the game.

“We have to be tougher as a team: both mentally and physically. A lot of times we were in position but we just got outworked,” said senior Sean Taylor in regards to the team’s rebounding.

However, the second quarter, both offenses picked up their game.

Taylor buried a deep three-pointer to tie the game at 13-13, and then Reservoir went on a 4-1 run and took a 17-14 lead; however, a Williams behind the back dribble to evade the defender and then a pass to Hohmann for the lay-up for a one-point advantage quickly answered that run.

The second quarter, the Eagles played better offensively but still looked like they were missing something or were out of tune.

Addisu added five more points in the quarter, heading into halftime with a team-high nine points.

The Gators went into halftime carrying a 31-23 lead. An eight-point deficit at half seemed like a lot more than it actually was. The Eagles were sloppy on the glass, committed turnovers, and didn’t fully get their offense moving, yet were only down single digits at the half.

Centennial needed a big second half adjustment on offense if they wanted a chance to win this game.

The third quarter did not go the way Centennial players and fans would have liked it to go.

They were consistently down five to eight points and just could not close the gap on offense. With 1:45 left to play in the third quarter, the Eagles switched to a 2-3 zone, which just wasn’t effective. Centennial went into the fourth quarter trailing 45-36.

Within the first three minutes, the Eagles pulled to within just five points, but after that they got smeared, and the Gators ran away with the game with ease.

The Eagles offense was just not there tonight.

“With regards to the offense, it’s as simple as working together and knocking down some shots. Our teamwork has spurts of fluidity and spurts of disconnection. It’s not an issue of not knowing what we individually do best, it’s the effort to work for each other,” said Taylor, “we’ve unfortunately dug ourselves [into] a deep hole in the county; however,  it’s not insurmountable,” Taylor continued, “we’ve got to regroup and come with that fire and vengeance every game. Because of our frequent success year in and year out, teams put a target on us. We have to understand that and play with that intensity that we display against each other in practice,” Taylor concluded

The Gators now improve to 4-0 in the county while Centennial drops to 1-3 in the county.

The Eagles don’t have a lot of time to dwell on the loss as they face Howard on Friday January 5.

To see photos from tonight’s game, click here.

For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan.