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Volume 450

This week’s coolsh*t brings you some saucy collaborations, brands giving it large and scientists doing what they do best (science). Will James ever be back? I’ve been asking the same question… and the answer is yes. The Little Chief will be making a comeback next week.


In a galaxy far, far away… Palace Skateboards and McDonald’s have teamed up to bring us the MCU. And no, it’s nothing to do with Marvel. This here is the McDonald’s Cinematic Universe. Duh.

Despite making its debut a month ago, the collab was only made available online as of last week. After weeks of hinting and teasing with cryptic billboard messages and clues across social media, they finally released their merch: sweatshirts, graphic tees and skateboards adorned with the brands’ shared DNA and logos. And I hate to be a Debbie downer, but it was pretty McBasic.

Initially the collection was only accessible via QR code printed on the packaging of the new “As Featured In” McDonald’s meal, but now you can spend 46 Great British Pounds on a tee that looks like it was designed by me on Canva.

But regardless of what I think, this collaboration does make sense. Palace are no stranger to ambitiously far-reaching partnerships, having worked with the likes of crocs to Stella Artois to the WWE. While the collection may not have pushed the boundaries of design, it showcases the influence of these iconic brands merging in the realms of fashion and pop culture, a testament to their enduring appeal. But I refuse to say I’m Lovin’ It.

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Paint the Town Red.

Fasten your seatbelts, L’Oréal are coming through.

For their latest campaign, the beauty brand stepped out onto the streets of Paris with an oversized lipstick applicator strapped to the back of a car. As the car moved, the lipstick appeared to paint the streets in a deep red to promote their new Matte Resistance liquid lipstick, highlighting its long-lasting colour.

It’s unclear how much of this is real and how much is AI-generated, but either way there’s no denying it is a creative way to showcase their product.

This larger-than-life advertising style isn’t new in the beauty scene – it has more than the faintest whiff of that viral Maybelline campaign that placed giant eyelashes on tubes of The London Underground. Despite their absurdity, these marketing stunts do get people talking.

This week they’re painting the town red, literally. What’s up next?

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Forget painting the town, now you can paint your entire house red!

Have you ever looked at your chips after squirting a dollop of ketchup over them and thought “wow, that colour would go great with my sofa”. No? Neither have we.

I’ll tell you who has though, home décor brand, Lick. They’ve recently partnered with Heinz Ketchup to create a world-first. Introducing: Red HTK57 or ‘Heinz Red’. A unique blend of pigments that exactly match the colour of Heinz ketchup.

Perfect for covering up those pesky ketchup stains on the walls, or for anyone with an unhealthy obsession with Heinz.

Ridiculous collaboration or a big bold reclamation of brand assets? I’ll let you make up your own mind.

Thank you Lick for this collaboration that literally no one asked for.

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You’re Getting on My Nerves.

A prosthetic arm that moves with the power of the mind. Science, bitch.

Prosthetics are nothing new; they have been around for yonks. The first being a wooden toe found in an Egyptian woman’s casket. Since then, we have come on leaps and bounds. In 2020, a research group developed a surgical strategy whereby they connect nerves in the residual limb to little pieces of muscle. There’s a whole bunch of other technical stuff and machine learning things that I obviously understand completely, I just don’t want to bore you with the details.

What’s important, though, is that incredible progress is being made. After years of development, an amputee is now able to open, close and rotate his prosthetic hand, as well as flex and extend the elbow, all just by thinking about it.

They are continuing to refine the prosthetic platform and, in the future, hope to add sensory feedback. Very cool sh*t.

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See you Later, Hater.

If you’ve ever entered the world of Call of Duty online lobbies, you’ll know it can be a frightening place. While some might say being called a prick by a 15-year-old is a rite of passage, it can be a pretty hostile environment and it’s just not very nice.

To tackle this, Activision Blizzard have announced that it will be introducing real-time AI-powered voice chat moderation in the upcoming November release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III. They will be partnering with an AI-powered voice moderation system to identify and act against hate speech, harassment, and discrimination. Their aim is to combat toxic online culture, one gamer bro at a time.

While they face potential obstacles, including variations in audio quality, regional accents and differing languages, which may lead to false positives, Activision says that a human will remain in the look for enforcement actions.

So you better think twice before you start verbally abusing that 12-year-old kid that’s about to kill you.

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Diamonds in the Rough.

The Rolling Stones are back, and they’re taking over Hackney. In anticipation of their upcoming album, Hackney Diamonds, the band re-branded Hackney Central station with their iconic logo.

Much like Mick Jagger’s libido, the Stones show no sign of slowing down. The surviving core – Jagger, Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood – announced the new album in an interview with Jimmy Fallon and his unbearably fake showbiz laugh this week.

They’ve really sorted the hordes of Hackney hipsters out with an easy upload by the Hackney Diamonds station sign for their who gives a shit Instagram story. Expect to see even more people who have couldn’t name two of their songs sporting those tongue t-shirts.

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The Next Agenda: Next Gen on Luxury.

Join us next Wednesday as we offer a newangle expanding the aperture of what was previously considered luxury’s ‘target audience’.  

Date & Location: Wednesday 13th September 2023 @ Soho Works White City.  

Reserve your place today: