HAGS co-hosts Riley Rose Critchlow and Nicole Wyland met on the set of a hit web show and have been creating feminist content together ever since. In 2016, they co-produced a gender-bending parody series called Get Bent, which highlights the way women are portrayed in Hollywood by putting women in the men's roles and vice versa. Their first release, "New Boy," is currently available on YouTube. In the spring of 2017, Riley and Nicole teamed up with "New Boy" director and head of Point of Blue Studios, Alex Reeves, to create HAGS.
As you probably know by now, our mission at HAGS is to deconstruct and demystify the ways society values women. Hopefully, it's relatively easy to tell when a woman is literally being treated like a trophy to be won ("she's a perfect 10!" "you better seal the deal," "hey, buddy, she's with me"), or dismissed as unfit or unworthy by not living up to a particular standard ("she's used goods," "I don't want his sloppy seconds," "she's been around the block") - but that's just the tip of the iceberg.
We're more interested in the sneakier ways our society is still built to keep men at the top and women constantly struggling to keep up, or defending their right to exist in the first place. Why do we teach little girls not to be bossy? Why is society so afraid of people who don't identify as male or female? Why does it take "a real man" to wear pink?
Oh, what's that you say? You don't need this lesson in feminism because you know women are human beings who deserve to be treated with respect and equality? Good for you! That doesn't mean that the problem doesn't exist (it does), and chances are you're perpetuating the sexism that is deeply engrained in our culture, just like the rest of us (you are, we all are). Would you name your son Bethany? If your best bro started carrying a purse, would you make fun of him? Would you take a woman more seriously if she was wearing slacks and a blazer than if she was wearing a princess dress? We all do it! That's the whole point.
The question is: what now? How do we change? What steps can we take to continue building a society that genuinely treats men and women equally? The answer: … yeah... like we have the answer. But we sure as hell know that first we have to identify what we're up against. Some of these tendencies are so sneakily woven into our culture that it's hard to even figure out where they are. That's our goal. We want to point out the shit so that maybe we can all team up and change it.
Meet the HAGS team:
RILEY ROSE CRITCHLOW - HOST
Riley grew up on a small island in Maine, moving to Los Angeles to pursue a BFA in Acting from USC's School of Dramatic Arts. After graduating, Riley founded sketch comedy troupe Bowling for Tiffany, whose content caught the eye of Funny or Die, Tosh.0 and Discovery. Out of BFT, Riley and fellow comedian, Daniel Montgomery, formed comedy duo Mary-Kate and Ashtray. Riley has performed at SF Sketchfest and Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and appeared (mostly as criminals) on such television shows as Southland, Rizzoli & Isles, American Horror Story, Timeless and S.W.A.T. She stars in Crunchyroll's Anime Crimes Division alongside Sungwon Cho, and in Julia Max's short film, Distortion, which is currently touring college campuses as a cornerstone of the Obama/Biden "It's On Us" campaign to end sexual assault.
NICOLE WYLAND - HOST
Nicole is an actress, writer, and vocalist. A native of Eighty Four, Pennsylvania, Nicole received her degree in Theatre Arts from the University of Pittsburgh before moving to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film. She is known for viral videos like freddiew's "Flower Warfare" which has garnered over 12,000,000 views. In addition to playing the role of Moriarty on the critically acclaimed webseries Video Game High School, Nicole writes and performs sketch comedy for her YouTube channel. Her parody Lady Gaga music video has been viewed over 12,000 times. In 2015, Nicole founded Verdant Pine Productions, a production company focused on female driven content where she has since produced several award-winning short films. Nicole is looking forward to producing her first feature early next year.
ALEX REEVES - PRODUCER
Alex is an award-winning director, producer, and sound designer. Born in New York City and raised in the suburbs of Chicago, Alex moved to Los Angeles in 2006 where he began a career as a television editor working on such modern classics as Supernanny, The Real Housewives of New York, and BBQ Pitmasters. In 2011, Alex opened Point of Blue Studios, a production company based in North Hollywood where he has since produced and directed multiple award-winning documentaries, short films, music videos, and commercials. He was the resident recording engineer for RocketJump Studios’ podcast network from 2013-2015, and his sound design work can be heard on Comedy Central, Hulu, and Funny or Die. Alex is the other half of Hollywood power couple “Nicolex” and lives with his wife (Nicole Wyland) and two cats (Milo and Winnie) in West Hollywood.