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Epic Executives Reportedly Knew Of L.A. Reid's Harassment Allegations

One of Reid's female assistance spoke to her supervisior and a high-ranking Epic executive about the claims before the 60-year-old left the label. 

Following his surprise exit from Epic Records, more details have come to light about L.A. Reid's alleged misconduct towards a female assistant.

Billboard reports a letter sent by the woman's attorney featured details about the alleged sexual harassment she received over the course of a year as well as the times she informed a supervisor about them. A source adds no immediate action was taken or made about the allegations. The letter also states that another high-ranking Epic executive was informed about the misconduct by the assistant but was told, "Before you say anything more, think about what that means for you. Just think about what it means.”

Reid, his legal counsel along with Sony have all declined to comment. A person from Reid's camp did state that the letter had inaccuracies. Throughout the letter, the staffer claimed the 60-year-old industry veteran made “inappropriate physical advances” towards her during the label's holiday party in December. Reid has been married to author and chef Erica Reid since 2000. He also reportedly made comments about her attire.  She also threatened to take legal action if a settlement wasn't reached.

Just days before the allegations came to light, Sony Music announced Reid's departure with the vague but forward statement, “L.A. Reid will be leaving the company." Reid, a co-founder of the legendary LaFace Records, (Usher, Outkast, TLC, Toni Braxton) arrived at Epic in 2011 and helped bring flair and hip-hop acclaim to the label with the success of  DJ Khaled, Travis Scott and Future. The label also saw pop success with the acts Fifth Harmony and Grammy-nominated Megan Trainor. In the 2000's, Reid led Arista, introducing the world to artists like P!nk, Ciara and Avril Lavigne. From there, he went to Island Def Jam, helping usher in the massive comebacks of Mariah Carey and Jennifer Lopez.

The New York Post reports Reid is considering making a move to Warner Brothers Music Group.

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'Black Monday' Becomes A Dramedy As Its World Flips Upside Down: Episode 9 Recap

Blair was Mo’s mirror in episode “295.” In this week’s episode, he internalizes Mo’s qualities, and now the reflection wants to take over the original’s life, like a scene from Jordan Peele’s Us. Some of the most analytically rich parts of this episode revolve around all the allusions to Blair assuming Mo's role after agreeing to go along with the Georgina Play, two months after Mo informed him of the rouse.

Blair flirts with Dawn – the woman Mo still loves – while sitting in Mo's desk chair as Mo walks in and sees them. He gifts all of the Jammer Group inner circle with replicas of Mo's custom-made Rolex and calls them “Molexes” with "f**k em all" engraved on them. It’s the latter mantra that, in a surprising twist, leads to Blair potentially ending Mo as we know him.

An early criticism of Black Monday was Andrew Rannells’ inconsequential portrayal of Blair in the first few episodes. After carrying a large number of scenes in last week’s episode, this week’s showcases his shining moment. One of the funniest scenes s when Blair stops himself from saying "it's all good in the hood," after glancing at Mo, before replacing "hood" with "municipalities." That’s a very artful way to say if he wants to be Mo, he’ll have to do more than speak like him. Consequently, Blair does just that in order to get Tiffany Georgina to go along with the Georgina Play.

The Agency Of Tiffany Georgina

Casey Wilson, who plays Tiffany, needs to star in a spin-off show if for nothing else than to see her do another interpretive dance routine to a remixed version of the national anthem like she did at Tiffany’s wedding reception. We predicted in our review of episode “243” that Tiffany would have a bigger hand in the Black Monday collapse than we originally assumed, and this episode brings our prophecy to life.

Tiffany admits to Blair in the final scene of the episode that she’s a lot to handle but poignantly justifies it by stating everyone isn’t as sure of themselves as she is. It’s in that moment we realized out of all of the characters with considerable screen time, Tiffany may be the only one who never lied about herself. The comments about smart “orientals” are vacuous and her obsession with social status is asinine, but they’re also genuinely Tiffany; Everyone else adjusts their morals and personality to fit whatever gets them money.

Tiffany also reveals that when she was in sixth grade, her parents prevented her from legally emancipating herself from them by giving her a cartilage piercing and a new credit card. In episode “243,” when Blair innocuously says he’s staying late at work to do “compliance,” Tiffany instinctively knew that meant illegally shredding documents because her family is wealthy. Tiffany’s parents had their own daughter kidnapped in last week’s episode to boost the company’s value and now their daughter plans to steal that very company from them. The Black Monday writers used the Georgina family this season as a commentary on how money can make anything transactional, even love and loyalty.

Just like with Mo, the Georgina family may be undone by a monster they created.

The Dramedy

In today’s age of television, shows rarely fit perfectly in one genre. Orange Is The New Black’s second season was nominated in the drama category at the 2015 Primetime Emmy Awards, a year after its first season was nominated in the comedy category. This blurring of the artistic lines has created a new type of show that is equal parts drama and comedy: a dramedy. After the last two episodes, Black Monday has become more dramedy than comedy.

In the first half of the season, Black Monday was roughly 90% hilarious debauchery with the 10% of deep introspection reserved for the final minutes of the episode. Over time, that ratio began to even out until last week’s episode, which delivered the highest concentration of drama acting of the season. In this week’s episode, the double and triple crossings in Blair and Mo’s heated rivalry are more central to the episode than Keith’s hysterical attempts at tricking the SEC and Tiffany’s ridiculous wedding. Aside from Dawn and Mo forming a secret alliance, the episode concludes with Blair’s most intimidating piece of dialogue as he breaks down the illusionary world Mo has constructed for himself.

While episode “7042” is the most compelling episode of the entire season, so far, the move into dramedy has its drawbacks. There are still gems like Mo’s double entendre of “I’ve unearthed secrets, got winded and fired,” a play on the name of legendary funk band Earth, Wind & Fire, who released their 1987 Billboard hit “System of Survival” a month before the events in this week’s episode. But, the hijinks and absurdist humor that Black Monday is predicated on are more separated than in any other episode.

As a result of this shift into dramedy, certain jokes not only fall flat but feel out of place and tonally different than the rest of the episode. Keith referring to the ability to know who is gay as “Navi-gay-tion” would be amusing in almost any other Black Monday episode. Him delivering it at the end of this week’s episode, after a dramatic exchange between Dawn and Mo, felt cringeworthy.

Hopefully, there’ll be plenty to laugh about when everything comes crashing down in the season finale next week.

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Jordan Peele attends the 'US' premiere at Museum of Modern Art on March 19, 2019 in New York City.
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'Us' Nabs Title Of Biggest Opening Weekend For An Original Horror Film

Jordan Peele’s second major film Us dropped over the weekend (Mar. 22), and much like its predecessor Get Out, it’s a monster of a hit.

According to reports, Us’ debut was the best opening for an original horror film in history, bringing in $70.25 million during its opening weekend. Its massively successful weekend also secures its spot as the third-best horror movie debut in history, behind the remakes of It and Halloween.

“Internationally, “Us” earned $16.7 million, bringing its total worldwide tally to $86.9 million,” reports CNBC.

Us tells the story of Adelaide Wilson (Lupita Nyong’o), a woman who is traumatized by an experience she had as a child. When unexpected visitors who look exactly like her and her family pay a visit to their beach house several years later, she, her husband (Winston Duke) and children have to help her combat her fears and demons.

CNBC reveals that early projections for her film were close to $50 million. However, strong ticket sales prompted analysts to change their estimates.

"The film took in $29 million between Thursday previews and Friday night showings, a strong start for a horror film that doesn’t have the benefit of a major franchise fueling ticket sales," the report continues.

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Attorney Michael Avenatti Charged With Reportedly Attempting To Extort Nike

Michael Avenatti, the lawyer who is representing many women in the high-profile R. Kelly criminal sexual abuse case, was arrested and charged with reportedly attempting to extort millions of dollars out of Nike. He is being charged with wire and bank fraud.

Avenatti was taken into custody in New York, and is alleged to have threatened to cancel a press conference if Nike did not pay a client $1.5 million, in addition to hiring him and a co-conspirator to conduct an internal investigation for a fee of over $10 million. According to the Wall Street Journal, the co-conspirator is celebrity attorney Mark Garagos, who was hired as a member of Jussie Smollett’s legal defense team.

“Before news of his charges, Avenatti posted a tweet saying he would be holding a press conference to disclose a ‘major high school/college basketball scandal’ perpetrated by Nike that he claimed to have uncovered,” Bloomberg News reports. “’This criminal conduct reaches the highest levels of Nike and involves some of the biggest names in college basketball.’”

Prosecutors say that Avenatti, who also represented Stormy Daniels in her high-profile case against Donald Trump, was reportedly working with an “amateur basketball coach” whose team had a contract with Nike.

Earlier this year, Avenatti reportedly received a tape of R. Kelly having sex with a teenage girl, which is reportedly being used as evidence in the musician’s sexual abuse case, which is currently underway in Chicago.

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