Category Archives: Entertainment

Dolphins Make Waves at School Board Meeting

Synchronized swimming team successfully petitions the district to overturn lighting directive

By Mattie Zautner, Current Staff

Over 60 dolphins swam into the last school board meeting.

Members of the Dolphins, the West Bend High Schools’ synchronized swim team, crashed the April 9 school board meeting to persuade district officials to allow the natatorium lights to be turned off during their show scheduled to open just three days later. Traditionally the show depends upon a darkened room for effect, but this school year the team had been notified that the lights could not be turned off for safety reasons. Continue reading

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Waking Toward Greatness

Video game review: ‘Hearts of Iron IV’

By Robert Pulford, Current Staff

World War 2 is, if unintentionally, the perfect time period for war games. Continue reading

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Come for No Nonsense, Stay for Coffee

Student band will perform at the Hub’s ribbon cutting ceremony

By Jessica Steger, Editor in Chief

No Nonsense is making its big break into the community.

The band will help kick off the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Hub Thursday at noon. The Hub is a coffee shop opened by the Washington County Volunteer Center on Water Street in West Bend. There have been several soft openings, and a weekend-long Grand Opening will begin May 17. The ribbon cutting marks the beginning of regular business hours. Continue reading

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The Secret Rock Life of a Guidance Counselor

By Samantha Dietel, Current Staff

This Friday, Kara Phillips will be stepping away from the typical lifestyle of a high school guidance counselor to pick up a microphone.

Phillips, a counselor at West Bend East High School, is the lead singer of the local rock band Love Handle. She and her band will be performing at 8 p.m. Friday inside Pillars Pub, which will be the group’s first gig since December. Continue reading

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Pencil, Ink and Digital Paint: East Grad Has Ties to Oscar Nominees

Rory Kurtz is an award-winning illustrator

By Jessica Steger, Editor in Chief

West Bend East High School alumnus Rory Kurtz has a personal reason for hoping “Baby Driver” wins an Oscar on Sunday.

Kurtz, an illustrator who graduated from East in 1997, created the official movie poster for “Baby Driver.” He also produced the alternative key art for “I, Tonya,” another Oscar nominee. Kurtz creates art for many clients, including Mondo-Alamo Drafthouse and well-known publications such as the New Yorker and Rolling Stone. Continue reading

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‘Keep the Crowd Rocking’: West Bend Bands Bring the Rock and Jazz

By Rachel Gergetz, Current Staff

The No Nonsense Brass Band thinks its new song will wow the crowd Wednesday at the third annual Rock & Jazz Fest. Continue reading

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WBHS Will Celebrate Black History

February is Black History Month

By Kaitlyn Von Behren, Current Staff

Black History Month will be celebrated at the West Bend High Schools for the first time this year.

About 20 WBHS students will perform Feb. 8 in a Black History Month Celebration in the Silver Lining Arts Center. Continue reading

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Why the OG Grinch is the Best Grinch

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Chuck Jones’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!” brings the iconic art and rhymey dialogue of Dr. Seuss to life, while adding plenty of its own flavor to the fife.

While there are many a Christmas cartoon made in the West, let me tell you why the original “Grinch” is the best. Continue reading

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West Bend Theatre Company Begins Its Christmas Future at WBHS

‘A Christmas Carol’ is coming to the Silver Lining Arts Center

By Sydney Spaeth and Priyanka Trivedi, Current Staff

After seven years of performances at the Masonic Lodge, the West Bend Theatre Company is moving its annual production of “A Christmas Carol” to the West Bend High Schools.

By joining with WBHS, the producers hope the show will become an annual fundraiser for high school students. Fifty percent of the proceeds from “A Christmas Carol” will benefit WBHS choir students by allowing them to travel and produce high-level musicals and performances. Both the directors and students participating in the performance are excited to see how the show will turn out now that it has been moved to the high school. Continue reading

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The Good Actor

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The creator of “House” returns to the prim and sterile halls of a metropolitan hospital in ABC’s “The Good Doctor.”

“So what separates this from the 7 billion other doctor shows that ape ‘House’?,” I hear you ask. Well, dear viewer, the Good Doctor in question, Shaun Murphy, has savant syndrome autism. The series is centered on Shaun and his struggle just to interact with his patients and fellow doctors. Much like “House” before it, that dynamic is where “The Good Doctor” shines. Continue reading

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House of the Three-Quarter Round

The crew builds the set for “House of the Seven Gables.” The set was designed to give audiences a unique experience close to the action. Photo by Justin Scherzer, Current Staff.

By Justin Scherzer, Current Staff

The West Bend High Schools’ fall theatrical production will be a significant deviation from their usual shows as the audience will be seated directly on stage for a tale of greed, love and murder.

Director Tonya Fordham and her theatrical cast and crew will put on Vin Morreale Jr.’s play “House of the Seven Gables” Nov. 16-18 at the Silver Lining Arts Center. However, contrary to the majority of productions they put on, this play will be in black box style, meaning the audience will be seated on stage with the performers. Continue reading

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Milwaukee Film Festival Review: Jasper Jones

By Grace Peplinski, Current Staff

In “Jasper Jones,” a young man balanced on the edge between childhood and adolescence discovers a dark secret in his pristine hometown of Corrigan, Australia.

This interesting, impactful movie is just one of the many foreign and domestic films playing in this year’s Milwaukee Film Festival, which started Sept. 28. Continue reading

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‘I Knew I Would Regret It If I Didn’t Go’: Two WBHS Students Audition for American Idol

By Jessica Steger, Editor in Chief

“American Idol” is making a comeback, and this time it has local connections. Continue reading

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The Radio Stars

By Gabrielle Diaz, Current Staff

The familiar voices from the West Bend High Schools’ public announcements are now being heard on local radio.

West junior Andrew Haese and East senior Lydia Spettel can be heard on 101.3 WIBD talking about events happening in the community and the schools at 6:45 a.m. every Tuesday morning. Listeners can also find Haese daily on his own station, A100 Radio. Continue reading

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Basically Belle

East junior brings Disney love to Autism Walk/Run

By Mattie Zautner, Current Staff

Her yellow gown twirled around her feet as she danced the night away with her beast.

For as long as she can remember, Gabby Diaz, a junior at West Bend East High School, has loved the Disney princess Belle. This obsession inspired Diaz to dress up as Belle for a recent Autism Walk/Run, attend prom wearing a dress similar to Belle’s gown and start her own party entertainment business. Her princess career has already begun and she plans on continuing to be a role model to all the little girls and boys out there. Continue reading

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Family of Composers

Siblings will perform original songs at Friday’s talent show

By Mattie Zautner, Current Staff

“Why Do I Like You?” and “Diamond Eyes.”

These two songs cannot be found on a Billboard Top 10 list because they were composed by West Bend West High School students Victoria and Sebastian Hunt. Their love of music inspired each sibling to write original songs to perform in this year’s WBHS Talent Show. The show is at 7 p.m. Friday in the Silver Lining Arts Center. Continue reading

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“13 Reasons Why”: Honorable Yet Flawed

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Making television for teens is easy, making television about teens is herculean.

Netflix’s “13 Reasons Why” is about the 13 reasons why a high school girl named Hannah Baker committed suicide. The events of the story are told through recorded tapes that Hannah made before her death and through her friend Clay in the aftermath of her death. It’s surprising to see entertainment aimed at teens actually tackle a subject that’s relevant to them, but it does make it inherently difficult to discuss because of its subject matter. The dodgy execution of the series doesn’t help either. Continue reading

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West Bend’s Rising Star: Savanna Rose

East junior nominated for Wisconsin Area Music Industry award

By Hannah Bensen, Editor in Chief

Many young musicians dream of winning a Grammy Award one day. Savanna Bonlender may not have received a Grammy quite yet, but she has the chance to win a prestigious award. Continue reading

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ABC’s “Time After Time” Won’t Stand the Test of Time

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“Time After Time” is a character-driven drama built on drama-less characters.

On paper, especially if you have prior knowledge about the show’s concept, what I just said must seem silly. After all, how can that be true about a series featuring time travel author H.G. Wells actually traveling through time to stop Jack the Ripper from ripping in modern times? Well, you throw out any personality or perspective that those two characters might have and replace it with public enemy number one of television, teenage drama writing. Continue reading

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The Music of “La La Land” Deserves Oscar Recognition

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The movie’s soundtrack is both contemporary and timeless

By Kara Conley, Current Staff

Winning seven Golden Globes is a miraculous feat in the film industry, but the success of “La La Land” doesn’t stop there.

Damien Chazelle’s modern-day musical continues to captivate audiences, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences took notice of its beauty, nominating “La La Land” for 12 Academy Awards. One of the awards “La La Land” is in contention for this weekend is Best Original Music Score. The film’s composer, Justin Hurwitz, has created musical mastery with a nostalgic sound that is refreshing to ears engulfed in a contemporary cacophony. Continue reading

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Tom Brady Dominated the Ads, Too

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What were the most notable commercials of Super Bowl 51?

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Hello, hello, and welcome again to the annual  TV Talk article about Super Bowl commercials!  The corporate advertisers of America have united once again to entertain and frustrate millions of fans. Here are my insights on a few of the most memorable ones.

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“Nosedive” Doesn’t Pass the Smell Test

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There’s something off about the buzzed-about episode of “Black Mirror”

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At what point does satire become propaganda?

Simply put, satire is caustic criticism, whereas propaganda is the demonization of a target in order to push what the author views as “good.” The two can be hard to separate at times (especially since satire of propaganda is pretty popular), but it’s important to know what’s what.

Which brings me to “Black Mirror.” Continue reading

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Independent Film “Another Yesterday” Has West Bend Connections

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By Kaitlyn Von Behren, Current Staff

As six-year-old Saleem Soden tried to sink a putt at a mini golf course, the cameras were rolling, the lights were on, and everyone was watching.

Saleem and his mother Hadwat acted as extras in “Another Yesterday,” a feature film directed by Steven Heil in Oshkosh throughout the month of October. Hadwat and Saleem are the wife and son of Joel Soden, a math teacher at West Bend East High School. Continue reading

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The Australian “Glitch” Is “Lost” in the Mainframe

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How do you convey the sensation of liking the initial premise of something, but hating the end result of that premise? That’s my dilemma with “Glitch.”

To elaborate, “Glitch” is an Australian series now on Netflix about six people who are resurrected from the dead. Each of these six people come from different time periods and different walks of life, but share one thing in common: they are obsolete. Simply put, the world moved on after they died and those that cared for them are either dead, senile or not the people they knew while they were alive. Continue reading

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Milwaukee Film Festival Review: Right Now, Wrong Then

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By Kara Conley, Current Staff

There’s nothing like watching the same story become a completely different one in a matter of moments.

“Right Now, Wrong Then,” a South Korean film that played at this year’s Milwaukee Film Festival, differentiates itself from those in its genre with the original idea of blending the same story into two separate ones, transformed by adjustments in a few subtleties. Continue reading

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The Long Walk: In Conversation with Anthony Anderson

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Local veteran will appear at Monday’s film screening at UW-WC

By Allison Trampe, Current Staff

Some people know Anthony Anderson as a neighbor, some as a war veteran. Others know him as a lead in the new documentary “Almost Sunrise.” Continue reading

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Milwaukee Film Festival Review: Kaili Blues

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By Kara Conley, Current Staff

Last week I was transported to a small town in China.

“Kaili Blues,” a movie playing at this year’s Milwaukee Film Festival, is a terrific work of art that evokes emotion and engulfs audiences with an emphasis on visualization. I was entranced by the images floating across the screen as a complicated story unfolded in front of my eyes. Continue reading

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Rather Meek for Something Called “Berserk”

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“He who fights with CGI monsters should look to it that he himself does not become CGI…. When you gaze long at the spasming, spinny camera, the spasming, spinny camera gazes into you…”

Another summer hath come and gone, yet the eternal wheels of Television keep turning. Preacher was orange, JoJo’s was weird, but there’s a particular series that really stood out to me over the summer season… it’s Berserk 2016. I’ve said it time and time again, I’m a hardcore fan of the Japanese Berserk and highly recommend the stellar, if poorly animated Berserk 1997. It only took 19 years without a proper continuation to the series for Berserk to finally get a continuation of its story. Continue reading

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Talk Is Cheap, Music Is Better

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As my time as a member of The Current draws to a close I hope to leave you all with one last recommendation that you will hopefully enjoy as much as I do.

Chet Faker is his name (well, Nicholas James Murphy), and his music is going to get me through this summer and the looming shadow of college. Let me introduce you all to this new up-and-coming indie star, and his chill vibes should help you all calm down after final exams like it will for me. Continue reading

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Summer Hype

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As the number of remaining school days lessen and the temperatures rise, TV Talk celebrates one whole year of existence! However, we are not here to discuss the length of my tenure on The Current. Instead, we’re here to talk about all the cool stuff coming out over the summer. Continue reading

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Excuse My French: Netflix’s New Political Drama ‘Marseilles’ Is a Stylized Mess

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I’ll be the first to admit that I was actually pretty excited when I heard about “Marseille.” Imagine, for a moment, Netflix budget + France + political intrigue. Sounds great, right? Well, it pains me greatly to tell you that “Marseille” is underwhelming. Continue reading

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See a Show: The Well Pennies Perform with Orchestra Students

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By Anthony Schlass, Current Staff

The WBHS orchestra is teaming up with the Well Pennies to put on a concert Friday in the West Bend Silver Lining Arts Center.

The Well Pennies are a husband and wife folk pop group based out of Boston, Massachusetts.  The acclaimed group consists of four members from all over the United States, from the Seattle area all the way to the East Coast. Continue reading

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What’s the Meaning of Death?

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If any of you at home have been keeping up with a little show called The Blacklist, you’re probably aware of what went down in the 18th episode of season three. A major character died and, naturally, forums for The Blacklist exploded with discussion.

Denial and shock on one hand, praise and credit on the other. Typical responses to this sort of thing.

However, The Blacklist’s controversy isn’t the only controversy to crop up in the television sphere. A certain AMC post-apocalyptic zombie fest recently had a similarly executed finale that has gained no less of a storm with its fans. Continue reading

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Move Over, Steven Spielberg

By Alina Prahl, Current Staff

Five movies by West Bend students have hit the big screen.

The short films were featured at the inaugural Lake Country Film Festival, hosted by the Oconomowoc High School film department at the Oconomowoc Arts Center on April 8. The festival’s intent was to create a platform for exhibiting student films. WBHS was well represented, as its talented student filmmakers received many accolades. Continue reading

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The Defenders, Netflix’s Mightiest Multi-Promotional Series

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Marvel’s really been getting around lately. With the stellar success of Age of Ultron, Ant-man and Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel has been raking in the cash and praise from all cylinders. However, Marvel seems to have adopted an interest in the smaller scale as of November, when they announced a Mini-Avengers of sorts with previous business partner Netflix. Continue reading

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