Emily Koopman



This Week’s Theme: Vampires

What comes to mind when you hear the word “vampire”? Are you of the Twilight generation who picture a sexy, sparkling specimen of a man, or do you envision a spooky old plantation house in Louisiana inhabited by Brad Pitt? Either way, vampires are a huge part of popular culture and something that have always intrigued me. I’m even going to admit to you that when I was 14 I traveled to Forks, Washington to experience the Twilight hype first-hand.

Here are some of my vampire favourites!

The Lost Boys: No vampire list would be complete without this 80’s classic. I have two favourite movies, and this is one of them. The film is full of iconic quotes and memorable characters. It’s also the first of many films to star “The Two Coreys”, Corey Haim and Corey Feldman. IMDb’s simple plot description goes as follows: After moving to a new town, two brothers discover that the area is a haven for vampires. “Lost Boys” also stars Kiefer Sutherland, Edward Herrmann, Dianne Wiest, and Jason Patric to name a few. I think I was 12 or 13 when I watched the movie for the first time, and my preteen self wished I had lived through the 80s even more than before. I was head-over-heels in love with Corey Haim. Watching it now, he’s a little young for me, but Jason Patric could get it. When Haim passed away in 2010, I admittedly spent the entire day of school in the counselor’s office. Even though he was old enough to be my dad, I was heartbroken. I’ve since been in touch with both “Frog Brothers” via Twitter — Jamison Newlander even follows me! It killed me and now I’m undead. I don’t know if he remembers but he agreed to be in one of my films and I’m holding him to it. I have the Tweets to prove it!

American Vampire In high school, my friend Jesse lent me the first collection in the “American Vampire” series. Here’s the synopsis (credz to Wikipedia): The series imagines vampires as a population made up of many different secret species, and charts moments of vampire evolution and inter-species conflict throughout history. The focus of the series is a new American bloodline of vampires, born in the American West in the late 19th century. The first of this new species is a notorious outlaw named Skinner Sweet, who wakes from death, after being infected, to find he has become a new kind of vampire, something stronger and faster than what came before, impervious to sunlight, with a new set of strengths and weaknesses. The series goes on to track his movements through various decades of American history—along with the movements of his first and only known progeny: Pearl Jones, a young woman working as a struggling actress in the 1920s silent film industry when she is attacked by a coven of European vampires hiding in Hollywood. Sweet saves her (uncharacteristically) by giving her his blood, thereby turning her into an American vampire like him, at which point she seeks revenge on the classic vampires who attacked her in life. The complicated and charged relationship Jones has with Sweet is another focus of the series.

Vampire Lamp from Amazon: This beauty sits on my night table, right by my coffin bookshelf. It adds a bit of gothic air to my pink, orange, and yellow room. You can pick it up here if your unstaked heart desires.

Romania: Romania is another place I’m dying to visit. I’ve been wanting to go on one of the “Hallowe’en Tours” and spend the holiday in one of the spookiest countries in the world. They have hundreds of incredible castles, medieval villages, and a spellbinding culture. Not only that, but last year I discovered a Romanian boyband which clearly made all of my dreams come true. I’ll bless you by including a music video below. I know it’s not really “vampirey” but trust me, there is always time for boybands. I’m in love with Plaid Boy. I don’t know what they’re saying but I bet it’s romantic!

Kat Von D’s Studded Kiss Lipstick in Vampira: I think I’ve mentioned it before, but there is also a shade called “Nosferatu” in her liquid lip which fits with this week’s theme too. Both are lovely — if you’re into gothic colours, her lipsticks are definitely the way to go. The Studded series have 3 different finishes to choose from (all different colours, mind you): matte, shimmer, and metallic.

Well, I’m still off adventuring in Madagascar, but I’ll be back in a few days. So, so excited to update you all!


By Emily, on May 29th, 2017, under Bi-Weekly Faves, Personal // Comments Off on BI-WEEKLY FAVES: Vampires


This Week’s Theme: Bugs

As you read this, I’m quite literally on a flight and off to adventure the wilds of Madagascar! I’m sure while I’m there I’ll be encountering a large number of weird and wacky insects. Which is why I’ve chosen aforementioned subject as this week’s theme. I had four items in mind, and had to stretch a bit for the fifth, but regardless, here are five of my favourite “bug” related things!

ColourPop’s Ultra Matte Lip in Love Bug I adore the mahogany colour of this lipstick. It looks great with so many outfits and it’s super easy on the wallet at $6.

Jake Bugg – Jake Bugg Jake is my favourite singer, so I’m a little bias, but I think his debut and self-titled album is also his best. I don’t think there’s a single bad song on this record. His unique voice and old school folk jams make for the perfect album. Will Hermes of Rolling Stone spills the truth tea in that Bugg “does what countrywomen Adele and Amy Winehouse did with soul: He yokes the spirit and styles of dated genres to the now… vivid storytelling helps keep Bugg out of the nostalgia swamp.” Some of my favourite tracks from the album are “Simple as This” (which one of these days I plan to have some lyrics of tattooed on my body, written of course in his own handwriting), “Lightning Bolt”, “Two Fingers” “Broken”, and “Seen It All”.

My future tattoo courteous of Jake

A Bug’s Life: An unpopular opinion, yes, but A Bug’s Life is my favourite Pixar Film! This is kinda messed up, but I totally had a crush on Flik when I was a kid. I was also obsessed with Dot and wanted to be Princess Atta. To this day, it holds a special place in my heart. That said, I’ve always thought it was kind of weird that Disneyland dedicated an entire “land” to it. Not that I’m complaining, but it just doesn’t seem that it ever reached the popularity or commercial success that, say, Toy Story, did. But will that stop the Bug’s Land bathroom from being my favourite place to pee at Disneyland? Absolutely not.

Y: The Last Man: This one is where I’m reaching a little bit. Technically the story has zip to do with bugs, but when I first read it, my initial guess was that some sort of bug wiped out the entire male population. I’m not going to spoil anything, but you can probably safely assume if I was right or not. This is another Brian K. Vaughan specialty (I talk about him briefly in another post with the mention of Paper Girls). This series is one of a kind in the comic world. They’ve made several unsuccessful attempts to turn it into a show and I’m kinda mad about it. I NEED TO SEE THIS ON SCREEN. I’ve also had the pleasure of meeting the artist, Pia Guerra (who resides in the Vancouver area), a few times and have had some custom art commissioned. She’s amazing. Here’s the plot (credz to the Vertigo Comics website) to get you stoked: This is the saga of Yorick Brown—the only human survivor of a planet-wide plague that instantly kills every mammal possessing a Y chromosome. Accompanied by a mysterious government agent, a brilliant young geneticist and his pet monkey, Ampersand, Yorick travels the world in search of his lost love and the answer to why he’s the last man on earth.

Little Rascals: Everyone knows this movie so I don’t even have to explain it. In fact, I think I quote it on a daily basis. It’s based on the classic 1920’s show Our Gang, which ran all the way through to the 1940s. “So Emily, what does this have to do with bugs?” you ask. Bug Hall! Bug Hall is the actor who starred as “Alfalfa” in the 1994 film — he’s my favourite character, besides Porky who was played by my pal Zac Mabry, of course. (Hi Zac if you’re reading this.) In 2014, the cast (give or a take a couple) reunited for the 20th Anniversary. A photoshoot, videos, and stories from the set ensued.

There we go! Bugs galore! I can’t wait to update you guys about my time in Madagascar (and Paris too!). I would love to post as it happens, but I’ve left all my electronics at home in Canada for both safety and so I won’t be distracted by the computer and can experience every aspect to the fullest.


By Emily, on May 15th, 2017, under Bi-Weekly Faves, Personal // Comments Off on BI-WEEKLY FAVES: Bugs

CAUSE: Save the Manatees!

Click the photo above to adopt a manatee // Photo: Cora Berchem, savethemanatees.org

The good news is, in 2016, manatees were knocked off the endangered species list and their status changed to “threatened”. That’s a step, but not ideal. The primary causes of their endangerment is due to entanglement in fishing gear, boat collisions, harassment from humans, red tide, and most of all, loss of habitat.

The greatest long-term threat to manatees involves the loss of warm-water habitat that manatees need to survive. At temperatures below 68 degrees Fahrenheit, the stress of the cold can become dangerous, or even fatal. Over the past 10 years, Florida’s manatees have had higher-than-usual numbers of deaths from cold stress. The winter of 2010 saw a total of 766 manatees killed, nearly 300 of them by an extended period of very cold weather.

According to Wikipedia, these creatures spend most of their time eating, sleeping, and traveling — which are the three things that I like to do! Maybe I was a manatee in a past life.

Here are some (happy!) fun facts:

– Florida celebrates Manatee Awareness Month during November!
– A long, long time ago sailors apparently thought these cuties were mermaids from afar.
– Florida has had a law to protect them since 1893.
– If you live in Florida, you can call Call 1-888-404-FWCC (3922) to report an injured manatee.

How can you help?

– Collier County Residents: Give Input on Manatee Protection Rule!
– Sign a petition urging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to make Three Sisters Springs a true winter sanctuary for manatees.
– Demand Clean Water For Wildlife & People
– Sign The Now Or Neverglades Declaration
– Florida Residents: Help Manatees By Signing A Petition to Restore the Ocklawaha River at Change.org
– Urge Governor Scott To Lead The Way In Safeguarding Florida’s Aquatic Environment
– Adopt-a-Manatee at savethemanatee.org

Sources: savethemanatee.org, defenders.org, The Winter Dolphin Chronicles

By Emily, on May 11th, 2017, under Causes // Comments Off on CAUSE: Save the Manatees!

INTERVIEW: Kurtis Wiebe

Click the photo to read the interview

Kurtis Wiebe is a Vancouver, Canada based author who’s been established in the world of comic writing since 2009. For his contribution to the critically acclaimed Green Wake, Kurtis was presented with the Outstanding Comic Book Writer Shuster Award.

Never satisfied with a specific style of writing, Kurtis has branched out to novels, videogames and screenplays. He spends his days at home, writing about the mad things that float around his brain, and occasionally escapes to various cities around North America to promote his projects.

He’s best known as the co-creator of the comic book series, “Rat Queens”.

By Emily, on May 4th, 2017, under Interviews, Kurtis Wiebe, Writers // Comments Off on INTERVIEW: Kurtis Wiebe


This Week’s Theme: The 1980s

I firmly believe David Lee Roth said it best: “When I die, sprinkle my ashes over the 80s”. So many people look back on the era and cringe at the bright and bold makeup choices, big hair, shoulder pads, and Olivia Newton-John inspired legwarmers. But me? I embrace it. I embrace it all. Here are some of my favourite 80’s items and 80’s inspired items.

The Goldbergs: I’m ashamed to admit that ABC was already a season and a half into the series when I discovered it, but it’s all good now, fate has brought us together. Here’s the synopsis courteous of the show’s official Facebook page: The Goldbergs are a loving 80s family like any other, just with a lot more yelling. Mom Beverly (Wendi McLendon-Covey, Bridesmaids) is a classic “smother” while Dad Murray (Jeff Garlin, Curb Your Enthusiasm) is a gruff, hot-tempered father. As the youngest of three kids, Adam is a camera-wielding future director who’s crushing on an older woman and getting schooled in the ways of love by a shameless Don Juan of a grandfather, ‘Pops’ (George Segal, Just Shoot Me). It’s such a fun concept and is based on the creator, Adam Goldberg’s, life while growing up in the 80s. At the end of each episode, an episode-related clip from the real home movies he made as a kid are shown.

Kat Von D’s Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Backstage Bambi: I probably own more Kat Von D lipsticks than any other brand. She’s paved the way for unique colours and, as a vegan, she is diligent that her products are not tested on animals. I bought the shade “Backstage Bambi” specifically for the most recent Duran Duran concert I attended. I did a full on 80’s look for the show — and received many compliments for my efforts. Anywho, Everlasting is paraben-free and long-wear, which has a great matte finish. So often my skin is already shiny, ergo, I tend to avoid glossy lipsticks. There are so many other beautiful shades in this series, a few favourites are: Nosferatu, Lolita, Brick Red, and L.U.V. Backstage Bambi (or any other) will put you out $24 CAD — but it’s worth it.

I think I’ve got the look down, all I need now is a time machine.

Paper Girls: From Image Comics’ website: SAGA writer BRIAN K. VAUGHAN launches a brand-new ONGOING SERIES with superstar Wonder Woman artist CLIFF CHIANG! In the early hours after Halloween of 1988, four 12-year-old newspaper delivery girls uncover the most important story of all time. Stand By Me meets War of the Worlds in this mysterious young adult adventure. Stand By Me? War of the Worlds? The 1980s? Sign me the fuck up. The first time I read the pitch for this I was 110% sold. Not only that, but I adore Brian K. Vaughan’s work (with the exception of Saga, which for some reason I just can’t get into). This series is a wild ride, so hold onto your Debbie Gibson-inspired bowler hat.

Duran Duran – Seven and the Ragged Tiger: By now, if you haven’t figured it out, I’m a massive Duran Duran fan. I’m not one to associate myself with “fandom names”, but damn, call me a Duranie. I was torn between this album and the Rio album, but since pretty much everyone is familiar with Rio, and the hits that were born from it, I decided to spotlight this underrated (though the band’s first and only #1 UK album) gem. This is one of my favourite records to listen to on vinyl. It adds so much atmosphere to the somewhat theatrical vibe Seven has going on. Three singles were released from the album: the first was “Union of the Snake” in 1983, followed by “New Moon on Monday” and “The Reflex” in 1984. Personally, I think New Moon is one of the band’s best songs, both lyrically and melodically.

Running on Empty: You can argue all you want, but River Phoenix was one of the best things to be born from the 80’s entertainment womb. Again, I was torn when choosing a film to feature in this section because there are just so many great 80’s movies. I finally selected Running on Empty because after deciding on Duran Duran’s Seven and the Ragged Tiger, I figured why not keep the underrated theme going? There is so much to say about this film. First of all, it was written by none other than Naomi Foner. Name doesn’t ring a bell? She’s also known as Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal’s mama. Both Foner and Phoenix were robbed of Oscars that year. Though she did take home a Golden Globe. Here’s the plot thanks to Wikipedia: The story revolves around parents Annie and Arthur Pope (Lahti and Hirsch) who in the 1970s were responsible for the anti-war protest bombing of a napalm laboratory. The incident accidentally blinded and paralyzed a janitor who wasn’t supposed to be there. They’ve been on the run ever since, relying on an underground network of supporters who help them financially. At the time of the incident, their son Danny (Phoenix) was two years old. As the film begins, he is in his late teens, and the family (along with younger son Harry) are again relocating and assuming new identities. As always, River captivates and, dare I say, carries the film. RIP, sweet angel.

Happy May! Hope it’s filled with good 80’s tunes and John Hughes marathons!


By Emily, on May 1st, 2017, under Bi-Weekly Faves, Personal // Comments Off on BI-WEEKLY FAVES: The 1980s