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Whisker Wars: Meet Myk O’Connor

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Last season on Whisker Wars, we met Myk O’Connor, who started out in the world of competitive bearding after a friend pointed out that he had a killer beard. More or less on a whim, he went to the World Championship competition in Alaska and ended up competing. He was hooked. Despite his light-hearted entrance into the sport, bearding has had a serious impact on his life. Not only is he a card-carrying member of the Gotham City Beard Alliance, but he met his fiancee and beard coach Karolina at a competition. Yep, under the Alaska sun, he fell in love with both the sport and the girl and moved across the country to pursue both.

He’s a loyal member of Beard Team USA, but a big fan of the Austin Hair Facial Club and their mission to grow the biggest beards while having the most fun. Myk is a beardsmen with balance, but can he maintain that balance as an up-and-comer on the bearding circuit if he’s forced to chase champions like Jack Passion?

Tune in to the second season of Whisker Wars (11/23 at 10/9c) to see if Myk can finally win big in the beard circuit.

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Want the latest news from Whisker Wars? Like us on Facebook and follow the show on Twitter at @whiskerwars (you can use the hashtag #whiskerwars).

Whisker Wars returns to IFC on Friday, November 23rd at 10/9c.

Underworld

Under Your Spell

10 Otherworldly Romances That’ll Melt Your Heart

Spend Valentine's Day weekend with IFC's Underworld movie marathon.

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Photo Credit: Screen Gems/courtesy Everett Collection

Romance takes many forms, and that is especially true when you have a thirst for blood or laser beams coming out of your eyes.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a werewolf, a superhero, a clone, a time-traveler, or a vampire, love is the one thing that infects us all.  Read on to find out why Romeo and Juliet have nothing on these supernatural star-crossed lovers, and be sure to catch IFC’s Underworld movie marathon this Valentine’s Day weekend.

1. Cyclops/Jean Grey/Wolverine, X-Men series

The X-Men franchise is rife with romance, but the steamiest “ménage à mutant” may just be the one between Jean Grey (Famke Janssen), Cyclops (James Marsden), and Wolverine (Hugh Jackman). Their triangle is a complicated one as Jean finds herself torn between the two very different men while also trying to control her darker side, the Phoenix. This leads to Jean killing Cyclops and eventually getting stabbed through her heart by Wolverine in X-Men: The Last Stand. Yikes!  Maybe they should change the name to Ex-Men instead?


2. Willow/Tara, Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Joss Whedon gave audiences some great romances on Buffy the Vampire Slayer — including the central triangle of Buffy, Angel, and Spike — but it was the love between witches Willow (Alyson Hannigan) and Tara (Amber Benson) that broke new ground for its sensitive and nuanced portrayal of a LGBT relationship.

Willow is smart and confident and isn’t even sure of her sexuality when she first meets Tara at college in a Wiccan campus group. As the two begin experimenting with spells, they realize they’re also falling for one another and become the show’s most enduring, happy couple. At least until Tara’s death in season six, a moment that still brings on the feels.


3. Selene/Michael, Underworld series

The Twilight gang pales in comparison (both literally and metaphorically) to the Lycans and Vampires of the stylish Underworld franchise. If you’re looking for an epic vampire/werewolf romance set amidst an epic vampire/werewolf war, Underworld handily delivers in the form of leather catsuited Selene (Kate Beckinsale) and shaggy blonde hunk Michael (a post-Felicity Scott Speedman). As they work together to stop the Vampire/Lycan war, they give into their passions while also kicking butt in skintight leather. Love at first bite indeed.


4. Spider-man/Mary Jane Watson, Spider-man

After rushing to the aid of beautiful girl-next-door Mary Jane Watson (Kirsten Dunst), the Amazing Spider-man is rewarded with an upside-down kiss that is still one of the most romantic moments in comic book movie history. For Peter Parker (Tobey Maguire), the shy, lovable dork beneath the mask, his rain-soaked makeout session is the culmination of years of unrequited love and one very powerful spider bite. As the films progress, Peter tries pushing MJ away in an attempt to protect her from his enemies, but their web of love is just too powerful. And you know, with great power, comes great responsibility.


5. Molly/Sam, Ghost

When it comes to supernatural romance, you really can’t beat Molly and Sam from the 1990 hit film Ghost. Demi Moore goes crazy for Swayze like the rest of us, and the pair make pottery sexier than it’s ever been.

When Sam is murdered, he’s forced to communicate through con artist turned real psychic, Oda Mae Brown (Whoopi Goldberg in her Academy Award-winning role) to warn Molly she is still in danger from his co-worker, Carl (a pre-Scandal Tony Goldwyn). Molly doesn’t believe Oda is telling the truth, so Sam proves it by sliding a penny up the wall and then possessing Oda so he and Molly can share one last romantic dance together (but not the dirty kind). We’d pay a penny for a dance with Patrick Swayze ANY day.


6. Cosima/Delphine, Orphan Black

It stands to reason there would be at least one complicated romance on a show about clones, and none more complicated than the one between clone Cosima (Tatiana Maslany) and Dr. Delphine Cormier (Evelyne Brochu) on BBC America’s hit drama Orphan Black.

Cosima is a PhD student focusing on evolutionary developmental biology at the University of Minnesota when she meets Delphine, a research associate from the nefarious Dyad Institute, posing as a fellow immunology student. The two fall in love, but their happiness is brief once Dyad and the other members of Clone Club get involved. Here’s hoping Cosima finds love in season four of Orphan Black. Girlfriend could use a break.


7. Aragorn/Arwen, Lord of the Rings

On a picturesque bridge in Rivendell amidst some stellar mood-lighting and dreamy Elvish language with English subtitles for us non-Middle Earthlings, Arwen (Liv Tyler) and Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) bind their souls to one another, pledging to love each other no matter what befalls them.

Their courtship is a matter of contention with Arwen’s father, Elrond (Hugo Weaving), who doesn’t wish to see his daughter suffer over Aragorn’s future death. The two marry after the conclusion of the War of the Ring, with Aragorn assuming his throne as King of Gondor, and Arwen forgoing her immortality to become his Queen. Is it too much to assume they asked Frodo to be their wedding ring-bearer?


8. Lafayette/Jesus, True Blood

True Blood quickly became the go-to show for supernatural sex scenes featuring future Magic Mike strippers (Joe Manganiello) and pale Nordic men with washboard abs (Hi Alexander Skarsgård!), but honestly, there was a little something for everyone, including fan favorite Bon Temps medium, Lafayette Reynolds (Nelsan Ellis).

In season three, Lafayette met his mother’s nurse, Jesus, and the two began a relationship. As they spend more time together and start doing V (short for Vampire Blood), they learn Jesus is descended from a long line of witches and that Lafayette himself has magical abilities. However, supernatural love is anything but simple, and after the pair join a coven, Lafayette becomes possessed by the dead spirit of its former leader. This relationship certainly puts a whole new spin on possessive love.


9. Nymphadora Tonks/Remus Lupin, Harry Potter series

There are lots of sad characters in the Harry Potter series, but Remus Lupin ranks among the saddest. He was bitten by a werewolf as a child, his best friend was murdered and his other best friend was wrongly imprisoned in Azkaban for it, then THAT best friend was killed by a Death Eater at the Ministry of Magic as Remus looked on. So when Lupin unexpectedly found himself in love with badass Auror and Metamorphmagus Nymphadora Tonks (she prefers to be called by her surname ONLY, thank you very much), pretty much everyone, including Lupin himself, was both elated and cautiously hopeful about their romance and eventual marriage.

Sadly, the pair met a tragic ending when both were killed by Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts, leaving their son, Teddy, orphaned much like his godfather Harry Potter. Accio hankies!


10. The Doctor/Rose Tyler, Doctor Who

Speaking of wolves, Rose “Bad Wolf” Tyler (Billie Piper) captured the Doctor’s hearts from the moment he told her to “Run!” in the very first episode of the re-booted Doctor Who series. Their affection for one another grew steadily deeper during their travels in the TARDIS, whether they were stuck in 1950s London, facing down pure evil in the Satan Pit, or battling Cybermen.

But their relationship took a tragic turn during the season two finale episode, “Doomsday,” when the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant) and Rose found themselves separated in parallel universes with no way of being reunited (lest two universes collapse as a result of a paradox). A sobbing Rose told a holographic transmission of the Doctor she loved him, but before he could reply, the transmission cut out, leaving our beloved Time Lord (and most of the audience) with a tear-stained face and two broken hearts all alone in the TARDIS.

Whisker Wars: Meet Aarne Bielefeldt

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During the first season of Whisker Wars, it was easy not to take Aarne Bielefeldt too seriously. After all the European transplant lives out in the woods of Northern California in a solar-powered house that he built, with his wife and his hand-built harpsichords for company. But then at the 2010 Nationals, Aarne came out of the woods and won first place in Full Beard Natural. It was the year when reigning favorite Jack Passion chose to host the event instead compete, but this didn’t tarnish Aarne’s big bushy win. Now, much to Jack’s consternation, Aarne and his beard are Jack’s chief competitors on the circuit. And, frankly, one reason for Aarne’s continued success over Jack might be that in addition to his full and shiny beard, he’s got style and charm that always makes him a fan favorite.

This fall, watch Aarne, Jack, and the rest of the competitors face off in the fascinating and hair raising world of facial hair growing when it returns to IFC on Friday, November 23 at 10/9c.

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Get the latest on Whisker Wars on Facebook. You can also follow the show on Twitter@whiskerwars and use the hashtag #whiskerwars.

Whisker Wars returns to IFC on Friday, November 23rd at 10/9c.

Watch the new trailer for Whisker Wars, returning Nov 23 at 10/9c

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Thanksgiving vacation doesn’t have nearly enough drama in it. Sure there’s arguing about who makes the best pumpkin pie and whether the stuffing should be in or out of the turkey and whether marshmallow-covered sweet potatoes are the best thing since leftover turkey sandwiches or an abomination on the face of the earth. Maybe your family argues about whether napkins go on the left or the right or who has to sit next to Uncle “Burpy” Joe, but once the meal is over, the milieu lacks drama. That’s where we come in. The day after this Thanksgiving, you bring the leftovers and we’ll bring the fireworks courtesy of the second season of Whisker Wars, which starts Nov. 23rd at 10/9c.

The second season of Whisker Wars brings viewers behind-the-scenes into the weird and wonderful world of competitive facial hair growers. The beards are long, the competition is fierce and the rivalries run deep. Want to catch up on the action before the new season starts? Fans can get their Whisker Wars fix by catching marathons of the first season on IFC on Thursday, November 22 at 7am ET/PT & 8pm ET/PT and Friday, November 23 at 4pm ET/PT.

Watch the new trailer for the second season of Whisker Wars:

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Want the latest news from IFC? Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @ifctv.

Whisker Wars returns to IFC on November 23 at 10/9c

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