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Coming Soon
March 25, 2014

Earlier this year, the Kellan Lutz vehicle The Legend of Hercules thudded into theaters with 3 percent positive reviews and an $18.8 million gross on a $70 million budget. Let's hope that The Legend of Hercules was a failure of execution and not concept, because the second blockbuster take on the storied demigod is slated to hit theaters this summer.

The first teaser for Brett Ratner's Hercules reintroduces the hero to audiences with a grandiose monologue. "No matter how far you go, man cannot escape his fate," says the voiceover. "Are you a murderer? Are you a mercenary who turns his back on the innocent? We believe in you. We have faith in you. Remember the deeds you have performed. The labors you have accomplished. Are you only the legend, or are you the truth behind the legend?"

Hercules would look like yet another second-rate 300 knockoff if not for one thing: The presence of the unfailingly charismatic Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson in the title role. Unfortunately, this teaser doesn't give us much to go on: A bunch of action shots and the sure-to-be-endlessly-quoted capper, "I. AM. HERCULEEEEEEEEES!"

Will this blockbuster take revitalize the legendary hero on the big screen? We'll find out when Hercules hits theaters in July. --Scott Meslow

Only in America
1:42 p.m. ET
iStock

In a bid to rid the city of the smell of urine, officials in San Francisco have begun coating walls near bars and areas frequented by the homeless with a special liquid-resistant paint that repels pee. "The urine will bounce back on the guys' pants and shoes," said a spokesperson. "The idea is they will think twice next time about urinating in public." Requests for the pee-proof paint are pouring in. The Week Staff

This just in
1:11 p.m. ET
Pool/Getty Images

Dylann Roof, who faces federal charges including hate crimes and obstructing the practice of religion for allegedly murdering nine people in a historically black church in Charleston, South Carolina, has chosen to plead not guilty, his lawyer said. Roof wanted to plead guilty to his 33 charges, but because prosecutors haven't yet revealed if they are seeking the death penalty, his defense attorney argued he couldn't advise his client to enter a guilty plea, The Associated Press reports. Roof also faces charges for nine counts of murder in South Carolina, and the state could also decide to seek the death penalty. Jeva Lange

Semper Fi
1:06 p.m. ET

Bambi, one of Disney's most beloved animals, may be best known as "a little frail deer, not doing very well, sliding around on the ice on his belly," as Donnie Dunagan, the original voice of Young Bambi, describes him.

That image of a helpless baby animal is exactly what Dunagan didn't want people associating with him when he was later drafted into the Marine Corps, as he explained to his wife in a recent visit to a recording booth in San Angelo, Texas as part of StoryCorps' project to collect the stories of everyday Americans.

Dunagan went on to serve in the Marines for over two decades, both in combat and as a commander in a boot camp, all while keeping his Bambi past a secret. He was terrified that the marines he wanted to fear him would instead start thinking of him as "Major Bambi." Dunagan's conversation with his wife was broadcast Friday on Morning Edition as part of their weekly StoryCorps series:

Dunagan thought he had successfully kept Bambi a secret up until a month before his retirement. During a particularly busy time on the base, a general he had known for years called him into his office, assigning him more duties. Dunagan expressed dismay at the extra workload. Then, as Dunagan recalls, the general pulled out a top-secret folder from a safe with his name on it, looked at him over his glasses and said, "You will... won't you, Major Bambi?"

While Dunagan may have once had mixed feelings about his Disney past, he says now that he wouldn't trade that experience for anything. He loves when people realize that he's "this old jerk, he's still around and was Bambi." Marshall Bright

election 2016
1:04 p.m. ET
Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Hillary Clinton, the frontrunner in the race for the Democratic nomination for president, on Friday morning didn't shy away from attacking former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a GOP 2016 frontrunner, on his home turf, where they both took the stage to speak at the Urban League conference in Fort Lauderdale.

"I don't think you can credibly say that everyone has a right to rise and then say you're for phasing out Medicare, or repealing ObamaCare," Clinton said, referring to Bush's super PAC Right to Rise. "People can't rise if they can't afford health care. They can't rise if the minimum wage is too low to live on. They can't rise if their governor makes it harder for them to get a college education. And you can't seriously talk about the right to rise and support laws that deny the right to vote."

Clinton continued on her warpath later in the day at Florida International University, where she urged Congress to put an end to the trade embargo on Cuba. "We were unintentionally helping the regime keep Cuba a closed and controlled society, rather than working to open it up to positive outside influences, the way we did so effectively with the Soviet bloc and elsewhere," Clinton said. "The choices we make will have lasting consequences, not just for more than 11 million Cubans, but for American leadership across our hemisphere and around the world." Jeva Lange

D.C. is 'hip' and 'cool'
11:05 a.m. ET

It's called "Neutra," and you see it every time you turn on HBO's Girls, order a SmokeShack from Shake Shack, or go to a Washington Nationals game. And now the hipster-chic, thin, mid-century font is officially the typeface of Washington, D.C.

"Whatever we're promoting, whether it's summer camp or a public health test, we want to make sure that it looks and feels like a government product," Michael Czin, director of communications for the mayor's office, told Wired.

So how exactly did our nation's capital decide on a font? Let Wired explain:

[Designer Andy] Cruz credits the font's "certain stylistic but non-descript feel." "I think it has that comforting authority to it," he says.

[Designer Paula] Scher doesn't regard the font as neutral, saying that it harkens back to a specific moment in time — the midcentury — which makes it an odd choice for a city government. "It's a retro font," she says. What does it have to do with progress? Then again — this is Washington D.C. [Wired]

Jeva Lange
Iran nuclear deal
10:36 a.m. ET
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) attacked opponents of President Obama's Iran deal on Thursday by expressing confusion over whether they'd still oppose the plan if they truly understood it. "You wonder why," she mused. "Have they even read it? [This opposition] looks political to me."

Whether Pelosi is right or not, it's a line of critique that she is uniquely not positioned to make: Perhaps the most infamous line to come out of the 2010 ObamaCare debate was Pelosi's claim that "we have to pass the [health care] bill so that you can find out what's in it."

Pelosi's quote was, of course, taken out of its context by a sound bite-driven news cycle, but she has since stood by the substance of the argument. Bonnie Kristian

trump nation
10:15 a.m. ET

Donald Trump's tradition of giving hyperbolic sound bites dates all the way back to 1973, when he was the 27-year-old president of the Trump Management Corporation in Brooklyn. The New York Times unearthed its very first mention of the now-inescapable public figure, and his first-ever quote is quite fitting.

In the Oct. 16, 1973 article "Major Landlord Accused of Antiblack Bias in City," Trump got his first taste of infamy after the Justice Department brought a suit in federal court against Trump and his father, Fred C. Trump, accusing them of violating the Fair Housing Act of 1968 by refusing to "rent or negotiate rentals because of race and color." The suit "charged that the company had required different rental terms and conditions because of race and that it had misrepresented to blacks that apartments were not available," The New York Times writes. Trump, of course, was indignant:

Donald Trump's first quoted words in The New York Times expressed his view of the charges:

"They are absolutely ridiculous."

"We never have discriminated," he added, "and we never would." [The New York Times]

Though Trump Management later sued the government for $100 million over the accusation, the two parties reached an agreement in 1975 in which the company had to provide the New York Urban League with a list of apartment vacancies every week for two years, and the league could present qualified applicants to every fifth opening in a Trump building where less than 10 percent of the occupants were black.

If that irked Trump, he wasn't showing it: He refused to describe the agreement as an admission of guilt, and by 1976, he seemed to be doing quite well for himself. From the Times on Nov. 1, 1976:

He is tall, lean and blond, with dazzling white teeth, and he looks ever so much like Robert Redford. He rides around town in a chauffeured silver Cadillac with his initials, DJT, on the plates. He dates slinky fashion models, belongs to the most elegant clubs and, at only 30 years of age, estimates that he is worth 'more than $200 million.' [The New York Times]

Samantha Rollins
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