Years and Years (2019) | In Conversation with Hayley Sleigh

The recent BBC series Years and Years (2019), written by Russell T Davies, captivated audiences with its dark yet hopeful imaginings of what could happen in our world over the next 15 years. Taking one family, the Lyons, through from 2019 to 2034, Years and Years explored topics ranging from political dissonance, modern concentration camps, transhumanism, economic collapse, nuclear fallout and artificial intelligence as a means to escape death. I sat down with my good friend and fellow writer, Hayley Sleigh, to discuss our favourite elements of the series, what worked about it for us, and how it engaged with our current political and social climate.

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Nottingham Poetry Festival | Linton Kwesi Johnson, Bridie Squires and Jamie Thrasivoulou

Last month I attended an absolutely fantastic event as part of the 2019 Nottingham Poetry Festival where dub poet and recording artist Linton Kwesi Johnson (the first black poet to be published in the Penguin Modern Classics series) and supporting poets Bridie Squires and Jamie Thrasivoulou, read their work, and it truly was one of the best nights of my life.

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Avengers: Endgame (2019)| The Illusion of Representation

Eleven years of my cinema-going life culminated when I saw Avengers: Endgame (2019) last month. There was so much to enjoy as a Marvel fan, I laughed, I cried, I’ve listened to Traffic’s Dear Mr. Fantasy endlessly since; it was definitely one of the most memorable film experiences I’ve ever had. I’ve grown up with these characters, and I am never prepared for how much their stories will impact me, realising how much emotional investment I’ve had in them over the years. To see some story lines finally end was moving. But there was a lot that left me feeling cold. Marvel continues to only put in the bare minimum of work when it comes to onscreen representation, short-changing its biggest female and black icons, and it’s no longer good enough.

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