Kristina Manente

Entertainment, Travel, & Lifestyle Writer

United States

Kristina Manente is a freelance journalist, audio engineer, podcaster, and all around nerd with a travel addiction and a tea obsession. Her focus is entertainment & lifestyle.


Most Recent

The Wedding Planner Institute
Our Predictions for Destination Wedding Trends 2022 - The Wedding Planner Institute

When it comes to weddings, people tend to be of two minds. There are the traditional, at-home sort and then there are the plane-hopping destination wedding couples. Whether it's a Mexico destination wedding or a three-day event on the Italian Riviera, destination weddings are popular and looking to be even more so in 2022.


SYFY Official Site
Beyond D&D: The 12 TTRPGs you're not playing, but really should be

When it comes to the world of tabletop roleplay games, everyone knows Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder. However, taking a step away from the big leagues of TTRPGs opens up a world of intricate and beautiful interactive stories just waiting to be explored.

How taking a photo of your ear will make you a gaming pro

When it comes to hearing things in games, a good pair of headphones will go a long way. But you know what will go even farther? A photo of your ear. How? Well, that's where the Immerse HIVE plugin from Embody comes in. It's time to game with your ears.

How is Muppet Treasure Island not-so-secretly the truest adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's...

Treasure Island is a beloved book of pirates, coming of age, danger on the high seas, and the thrill of adventure. Throughout the decades since its publication as a serial from 1881 to 1882, people have sought to adapt the Robert Louis Stevenson novel into various forms. It was first adapted in 1918 as a silent film directed by Sidney Franklin and then less than twenty years later as a talkie in 1934 starring Jackie Cooper and Wallace Beery.

Rear review mirror: RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 after 16 years of screams

There are some games that are so tied to one's childhood that any mention of them erupts in a miasma of nostalgia. Ocarina of Time will cause a few gasps of adolescent joy, The Sims a few cackles of middle school mischief, and then there's RollerCoaster Tycoon.

Star Trek
It's Time We Appreciate B'Elanna Torres

There are an astounding number of amazing women to be appreciated in Star Trek, and none more so than those in Voyager. The series gave us our first female captain, Captain Janeway, something long overdue. Seven of Nine bridged the gap between human and machine with a surprising look at the Borg.

Into the Unknown: Making Frozen 2 doc might make you cry harder than the movie

smashed box office records and hearts back during the holiday season, so perhaps it was only apt that the documentary chronicling the final months of production would be heart-wrenching as well. Now available on Disney+, Into The Unknown: Making Frozen 2 is a surprisingly emotional six-part series journey that gives an in-depth look at the trials and tribulations of making a highly anticipated sequel.

Star Trek
In Lifesigns, it's What's on the Inside That Counts

Valentine's Day is this Friday. In celebration, we're spending the week celebrating love in all the forms it takes throughout the quadrants. L(ove)LAP 🖖 There are many romances in Star Trek: Voyager, some canon, some not.

Dragon Age: Blue Wraith Continues a Fan-Favorite Character's Story

Canon compliant and beautifully illustrated, the comics build on the world of Thedas in a way that even the books can't. Not only do you get more stories from this universe, but you get to see them as well, thanks to the stunning artwork of Fernando Heinz Furukawa.

The 12 most unfairly maligned movies of the 2010s

Welcome to SYFY WIRE's Decade in Review, a series of articles that will look to catalog the best, worst, and weirdest cultural and entertainment moments of the 2010s as we look toward the future. Today, we celebrate the movies that deserved more.

How to keep fanfiction legal and avoid trouble with lawyers

Welcome to Read This Fanfiction. Once a digest, now a deep dive into the world of fan-created written works. Join us twice a month as we examine authors, platforms, trends, scandals, and more from every corner of the fanfiction universe. "It's fine for creators to not like fanfic, but to punish fans for daring to write it is wrong."

Inside the magical '80s art of Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery

David Nakayama has been a comics mainstay for years, known for his work on Marvel Adventures: Hulk and package illustration for Hasbro. He's drawn covers for nearly every major property, from X-Men and The Avengers to Star Wars, but his talent and resume are broader than you may realize.

Ghost Nation promises haunts for skeptics and believers alike

Just in time for the spookiest month of the year, the godfathers of paranormal investigation are back with a new show and a new roster. Ghost Nation premieres this Friday, October 11, on The Travel Channel, and reunites Jason Hawes, Steve Gonsalves, and Dave Tango in the world of ghost hunting.

NYCC 19: Black Canary goes through her awkward middle school phase

Black Canary - AKA Dinah Lance - is one of DC's oldest superheroes. Now, she'll be one of the youngest. The character is everywhere these days. She's a staple of the DC comic book pantheon, rocks the Arrowverse, and will be played by Jurnee Smollett-Bell in the 2020 film Birds of Prey .

How do you turn fan art into a career? At NYCC, a Doctor Who artist explains

Chances are that you've seen Alice X. Zhang's work. Her loose-brushstroke digital style using vibrant and evocative palettes has touched many a fandom and been licensed by more than one major property. All with good reason - it's sometimes whimsical, sometimes emotionally charged, occasionally hilarious, and always beautiful.

Asher Angel talks the true magic of Shazam! and on-set pranks at SDCC 2019

Asher Angel's first San Diego Comic-Con experience was nothing compared to this year's. With the world having now seen Angel's take on Billy Batson in Shazam!, his entire life has gone, well, super-powered. "It's like I didn't even do the first one," Angel told SYFY WIRE in an interview at Warner Bros.'

LGBTQ+ cosplayers reveal the queer video game characters they identify with

More than just dressing up, cosplay is an avenue for self-expression. In particular, it has allowed many of those who identify as LGBTQ+ to share their true selves, or selves they're curious about. Cosplaying can be a way of becoming someone else entirely, perhaps a person you identify more with than that of your day-to-day life.

Thank God for Michael Sheen, the angel of Good Omens and fan art alike

The world of fandom is a celebration of all things we love. From fanfiction to fan art to vids and conventions, it's a multifaceted playground of enthusiasm and adoration. Fandom has no age, no nationality, no gender or sexuality. It's all of these things wrapped up in creativity and expression.

How to Cook a Game of Thrones Finale Feast

The idea of preparing a feast for the finale may seem odd at first. After all, you're likely to either throw food at the screen in abject horror, choke on it in a furious rage, or upchuck it all in an Game of Thrones Exorcist- worthy spew at the gruesome violence.

10 monsters from around the world that will terrify you

If you were asked to name a classic monster, chances are you'd list the likes of Bigfoot, The Loch Ness Monster, vampires, or werewolves. Perhaps you might get a little creative and say chupacabra or basilisk. No offense to these hallmark creatures of mayhem, but there are so many more interesting monsters in the world, just waiting to be discovered and waiting to terrify.

Nerdy Jobs: The voices behind dating sims and visual novels

Once just off-shoots and continuations of popular anime or franchises, dating simulation games and visual novels have seen a popularity boom in recent years. These Choose Your Own Adventure-esque games are growing in popularity on Steam and other platforms for their engaging characters and storylines and loved for their ability to transport readers and make them truly feel like part of the story.

Nerdy Jobs: The writers who craft D&D and Magic: The Gathering's stories

It's not hard to appreciate the rich and mesmerizing lore and worlds of Dungeons and Dragons and Magic: The Gathering. These games are always changing, adapting, and bringing new stories, characters, and mechanizations to our tables. The people involved in that are plentiful, but who is it that actually writes these stories?

When fanfiction gets so popular, it spurs its own fandom (and babies)

Once the stuff of underground zines, fanfiction has become a massive genre with many subgenres unto itself. They may be continuations, divergent plot lines, or simply tales from within that world. Maybe it's a coffee shop alternate universe or an AU in which the characters are in a war scenario a la " Two Two One Bravo Baker."

Small, but mighty: How local cons are made

For nerds, attending conventions to celebrate stuff they love is one of life's greatest joys. There is little better in this world than geeking out about the latest season of a show with another fan, or seeing people dressed as your favorite character.

5 ways to get your Sherlock Holmes fix without seeing the stinko Ferrell-Reilly movie

After a century and a half of solving crimes, Sherlock Holmes has near-universal name recognition in the English-speaking world. His adventures and mysteries are ingrained into our being from a young age. Every few years a new Holmes comes to our screens, be it Jeremy Brett in the much-famed Granada Sherlock Holmes series or Benedict Cumberbatch's whirlwind Holmes in Sherlock.

Would Harry have chosen Pikachu? A magical starter Pokémon exploration

With the drop of the Detective Pikachu trailer and the release of the Fantastic Beasts sequel, I've been in a Pokémon and Harry Potter state of mind. So, of course, I had to combine them. I got to thinking, what Pokémon would Harry have chosen if Hogwarts was Pallet Town and Professor Dumbledore was Professor Oak?

VRV Blog
Anne Kirn's Wonderful World of Puppets

It's smile time in The Adventure Zone People create all sorts of things to celebrate the things they love-fanart, fanfiction, cosplay, jewelry, even mock trailers and video games. All these things are wonderful, love-filled expressions of creativity, but occasionally something comes along that makes you gasp in utter delight at the uniqueness and sheer awesomeness...
Harry Potter: A History of Magic

Harry Potter: A History of Magic , the British Library's most successful exhibition, opened at the New-York Historical Society on Friday, Oct. 5. In a celebration of the 20th anniversary of the U.S. publication of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone , this exhibition showcases everything from original artwork and pages from J.K.

Why you should watch Japan's answer to Sherlock Holmes, now on HBO

Robert Downey Jr. went over the Reichenbach Falls in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows nearly seven years ago. BBC Sherlock is more or less over, with its leads locked into Marvel contracts for the foreseeable future and the showrunners off modernizing Dracula.

10 LGBTQ+ anime that you need to watch now

The world of anime is a diverse one, as the medium tells just as many deep, socially relevant and important stories as it does light heart-eyed or action-packed fare. What may surprise many who aren't terribly familiar with anime is the wealth of LGBTQ+ focused series out there.

VRV Blog
Meet the Sherlock Holmes Fan Who Built His Own 221B Baker Street

Fans create amazing things. They collect, they build, and they show their love and appreciation in a beautiful myriad of ways. Whether they have the world's largest Hatsune Miku figurine collection or are trying to build every Doctor's TARDIS, fan collections and creations are simply marvelous.

Grok Nation
Our favorite cosplay from San Diego Comic-Con | Grok Nation

From Deadpool dressed as Bob Ross to a Hawaiian Stormtrooper, people let their costume creativity fly this year Cosplay is one of the hallmarks of any fan convention. Cosplay, a.k.a. costume play, started back in the '60s and '70s at science-fiction conventions.

Grok Nation
Jodie Whittaker takes the Comic-Con stage as first Doctor Who-we react

Reactions before and after the first female Doctor's appearance indicate that the future is female-and we all like it that way The line for the panel at San Diego Comic-Con started on Tuesday morning, a full two days before the cast would take the stage in front of 6,000 Hall H attendees.

Why Magic Kingdom is The Best Park At Walt Disney World

With four parks to choose from, two water parks, and adult-only areas as well, the Walt Disney Resort is a monster of a leisure destination. How do you choose which park is worth your while? Park-hopping is possible, but not while also getting the full experience each park has to offer.

Reality TV

The Ashley's Reality Roundup
TikTok Stars the "Old Gays" to Star in Their Own Reality Show

Robert Reeves, Mick Peterson, Bill Lyons, and Jessay Martin are taking their TikTok fame to reality TV! The quartet-collectively known as the "Old Gays"- is known for posting funny videos about living together near Palm Springs.

The Ashley's Reality Roundup
Longtime 'Judge Judy' Bailiff Speaks Out After Not Being Asked To Join New Series 'Judy Justice'

When Judge Judith Sheindlin's new show, Judy Justice, was announced in March 2020, more than a few people were surprised. The courtroom series had been on air since 1996 and had become a staple of daytime television. Judge Judy's quick wit and lack of a filter became synonymous with the series, as did her quiet, but stalwart companion, bailiff Petri Hawkins-Byrd.

The Ashley's Reality Roundup
'Fixer Upper' Stars Chip & Joanna Gaines Finally Address Past Accusations of Homophobia & Racism...

Chip and Joanna Gaines present a sweet, silly, and functional family and professional life on HGTV's Fixer Upper and throughout their entire Magnolia empire. However, over the years, racist and anti-LGBTQIA+ allegations have surfaced more than once against the couple. Chip and Joanna have never really addressed the claims, but are now speaking out about it in a new interview.

Games & Gaming

Beyond D&D: The 12 TTRPGs you're not playing, but really should be

When it comes to the world of tabletop roleplay games, everyone knows Dungeons & Dragons and Pathfinder. However, taking a step away from the big leagues of TTRPGs opens up a world of intricate and beautiful interactive stories just waiting to be explored.

Destiny 2: 9 Best Titan Subclasses

Ever wonder what the best Titan subclass is in Destiny 2? There are three main subclasses, but multiple branches. Some are far superior to others, however, so to help you, we’ve put together a list of the 9 best Titan subclasses in Destiny 2. Take a look.

Warzone: How To Change Field Of View

As with all first-person shooters, Call of Duty: Warzone players rely heavily on what you can actually see on the screen. After all, how else are you going to get that perfect shot? One way is to change the field of view (or FOV). A feature only given to PC players, changing the FOV can enhance your game and give you an edge. To help you change the FOV in Warzone on PC, here’s what you’ll need to do.

How To Leviathan Raid In Destiny 2

The Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2 is probably the most challenging, yet rewarding, tasks in the game. Knowing how to approach the raid is key to success. If you want to know how to conduct a Leviathan Raid in Destiny 2, here’s what you’ll need to do.

How To Change Name In Warzone

A lot of the time, once you choose your name in a video game, you’re stuck with it. That isn’t the case with Call of Duty: Warzone, where changing your name is entirely possible, as long as you’re not breaking any community guidelines. Changing your name in Warzone isn’t a complicated process, but you will need to follow a few steps. If you want to know how to change name in Warzone, here’s what you’ll need to do.

How To Get Xur In Destiny 2

Every Friday, Destiny 2 players all have one mission: find Xur. The traveling merchant comes to the solar system every week with a stock of exciting and exotic wares in exchange for Legendary Shards. The problem is, you have to track him down, and he’s never in the same place every week. Herein lies the big question: how do you get to Xur in Destiny 2?

Welcome to the Wild World of Sims Machinima

As someone who grew up with and has lost weeks, if not months, of my life to it and its many sequels, I have always been amazed at the creativity of the series' fans. Whether it's creating new hairstyles, eyelash accessories, or WooHoo mods that sometimes defy the laws of physics, has truly become a platform all in itself.

Cooking With Grammeowster Chef from Monster Hunter World: Iceborne

If you're looking to dominate the food chain in Monster Hunter World: Iceborne, then you're going to need to impress a multitude of people and creatures alike. But if we're talking in a literal sense, there is only one inhabitant in Seliana that you really need to please: Grammeowster Chef.

Weddings & Wedding Planning

The Wedding Planner Institute
Wedding Planner Business Ideas for Social Media (Incl. Hashtags) - The Wedding Planner Institute

There are thousands of wedding planner business ideas out there, and endless ways to promote your business. It can quickly get overwhelming, especially when it comes to social media. How do you beat the algorithm to grow your business? When it comes to social media platforms, there are the big leagues that every wedding planner should use: Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

The Wedding Planner Institute
20 Wedding Trends from COVID-19 - The Wedding Planner Institute

The COVID-19 pandemic changed life around the world as we know it, and that goes for the wedding industry as well. Between mass cancellations, delays, the sudden need for a small wedding, and having to pivot to new ideas, it has been a whirlwind for wedding planners and their clients alike.

The Wedding Planner Institute
The Wedding Budget: Expectations vs Reality by Vendor - The Wedding Planner Institute

When it comes to creating a wedding budget for your clients, or even an example wedding budget to give them an idea, there are certain questions to ask. "How much money do you have?" It may seem tacky to ask outright, but it's the first in a long list of steps to take when getting everything they need for their big day.

The Wedding Planner Institute
43 Questions to Ask During a Wedding Planner Consultation - The Wedding Planner Institute

When it comes to a wedding planner consultation, there is a long list of things to ask. After all, you want to understand precisely what your couple wants for their big day. They are putting their wedding day in your hands, so you need all the information you can planner consultation The number of questions can seem overwhelming, so it's best to take it in stages.


Grok Nation
The best new K-beauty products of 2019

These ampoules, masks and oils should be on your beauty radar Famous for launching and popularizing skincare products such as BB creams and sheetmasks, Korean beauty has certainly made a name for itself globally. Even if you don't know what the steps are, you've probably heard of the country's famous 10-step routine.

You Can Adopt a Dog and Have It Gift-Wrapped at Barley Labs Tomorrow

Saving Grace Gift-Wrapping Fundraiser and Adoption Event Saturday, Dec. 15, 2:00 p.m. Dog-friendly bars and breweries dot the Triangle, but there's one that leads the pack not only in making Fido feel welcome (with dog beds and house-made dog treats) but fostering community.

Living 'The Bi Life'

Irene Ellis went from introverted nerd to reality show star on the UK's first ever bisexual dating show.

Grok Nation
Follow these K-beauty Instagrammers for the best tips, tricks and trends

Korean beauty products are all about long-term skincare; see what these influencers recommend The world of K-beauty can be overwhelming. Do you know your sheet mask from your molding mask? Your BHA from your toner? With Korean beauty booming and entering brick and mortar stores in the U.S., it's fairly safe to say it's here to stay.

Grok Nation
We picked our favorite Korean face masks for all skin types

Whether you've never tried K-beauty or are an avid fan, we've got recommendations Have you ever used a Korean beauty product? You probably have-even if you don't realize it-because K-beauty has basically taken over the world. South Korean beauty has become an international export so popular that Korean brands are now opening U.S.

Holland Is Not Afraid

When Holland debuted as the first openly gay K-pop idol, to say the least, it caused a stir. His first song, "Neverland," wasn't all that strong vocally or even instrumentally, but it sent a powerful message with its uninhibited and uncensored presentation of his love life as a homosexual man.

H.O.T. Reunion Continues

When first generation K-pop boy band H.O.T. reunited earlier this year after 17 years away, it was a big deal. Never mind that no one expected the legendary group to ever reunite, but to do it to such praise and acclaim was something else entirely.


Chances are that you've heard a certain song playing in every shop and subway station recently, and no, it isn't BTS. BLACKPINK has finally had their long-awaited comeback, and they're back with a vengeance. And rightly so. Many fans had begun to worry that BLACKPINK would suffer the fate of many of YG's artists: the dungeon.

The Best K-pop Albums of 2017

We took to social media to see what you all thought earned the title of 'Best Album of 2017,' and boy... that was an experience. Imagine your own humble Twitter being set upon by thousands, and I do mean thousands, of ARMYs. Well, that's what happened to me.

The Problem With Korean Music Award Shows

Music shows are plentiful in Korea. Award season makes this even more apparent as award show after award show is broadcasted and fandoms are pitted against one another in battles for awards that rarely end up going to who people voted for.

Are Idol-Making Reality Shows An Exploitive Bust?

Last month, YG Entertainment released an official statement apologizing for the cancellation of the debut of the final group from JTBC's "Mix Nine." The reality show, much like "Produce 101" or "Idol School," had trainees from multiple agencies competing for a spot in a new idol group, voted on by judges and the general public.

SEOUL Magazine
Born In New York, Made In Seoul

When I walk in to interview K-pop group EXP EDITION, they are having a Korean lesson; notebooks are out, notes scrawled, and a patient Korean teacher was commending them for their work. Immediately my preconceived notions of the all-foreign boy band had been shattered. It was a very pleasant surprise.

SEOUL Magazine
For Jonghyun

On December 18, 2017, the world lost Kim Jonghyun, the main vocal of K-pop group Shinee, singer, songwriter, producer and artist. Devastated, distraught and searching for comfort, fans began immediately paying tribute to the man, bringing flowers, gifts and endless notes to SMTown at Coex.

Sasaengs Stalking Seoul

K-pop fans have always been the enthusiastic sort, and the chance to get a glimpse of their favorite idol is an exciting one indeed. While there are many who would simply be happy having the chance to see them, there's others that will stop at nothing until their idol knows exactly who they are.

The Retro Repackage

K-pop is undoubtedly one of Korea's most vital exports, but at its core, it is a domestic business. The public craves idols and entertainment at an alarming rate, especially given how many new groups and subgroups debut every month. 2017 has seen the birth of a number of trends, from '80s and '90s fashion choices to music video aesthetics.

Gummy Returns After Nine Years

Gummy is finally back with her fifth album, "Stroke." While she came out with a mini album three years ago and has graced many a K-drama sound tracks, hit series "Descendants of the Sun" included, it's been nearly a decade since her last full-length album.

A Breath of Fresh Air To An Old Art

The Seoul Opera Festival ran June 20 to 30 at the special outdoor stage at Cheonho Park and at Gangdong Arts Center in Myeongil-dong. The festival was a celebration of all things opera with eight different events, presentations and performances, all of which were utterly delightful.

Korea Magazine
No Ordinary Concert

A K-pop concert is a spectacle so huge, it must be experienced to be believed.

SEOUL Magazine
The Lyrebird Quartet & Volstead Monday Night Jazz

Seoul and jazz music aren't two things you normally associate with one another, and yet there is a growing jazz scene in the city. Hearing the dulcet tones of saxophones and upright basses usually requires a trip to a high-end bar.


Geek Road Trip: This cafe in South Korea looks mesmerizingly like a 2D comic book

In the surprisingly cutthroat world of Korean cafes, smaller ones tend to have the kinds of opportunities that large franchises typically don't. They can fully embrace a theme or a concept and speak to a specific audience - an Instagram-obsessed one. When it comes to Seoul, South Korea, cafe culture is a beast of its own.

Geek Road Trip: The geekiest bars across America (and Canada)

Anyone who has ever been to a convention or LAN party knows that geeks can drink. However, now there are actual bars catering to the geek community. From Brooklyn to Austin to L.A., there's nerdy dives and bars with board games, video games, and heated debates of Marvel vs.

The Mongol Rally: the Greatest Motor Adventure on the Planet

You must drive from England to Mongolia in a 1.2 liter engine car or less. You must raise at least £1,000 for charity. You are totally and absolutely on your own. This dangerously hilarious journey takes place ever year as part of The Adventurists' roster of insane treks across the world and is referred to as the world's greatest motoring adventure.

Meet Jeju: The Hawaii of Korea

Jeju Island is a hidden paradise not known to many outside of South Korea. Crystal clear waters, volcanic beaches, and mountains rolling along the horizon, this is a destination everyone needs to put on their bucket list.

Teach English: ESL
Why You Should Consider Teaching English Overseas

Teaching English overseas is a great way to not only see the world, but also to build up your resume, which could lead to a challenging and exciting career. If you're from a native English-speaking country (USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, etc), have a four-year degree, and an accredited TEFL certification, you are golden.

48 Hours in Tokyo

From robot cafes to ancient temples and shrines, the wonderful and wacky capital of Japan is a place everyone should visit at least once. With one of the best food scenes on the planet and a cultural heritage celebrated on every corner, Tokyo will delight the senses.

48 Hours in Seoul

Insadong is Seoul's cultural corridor, filled with tea houses, historical palaces, and traditional homes running up the hills. Take Line 3 to Anguk Station and head to the exquisite Changdeokbokgung Palace. Make sure to see the 78-acre Secret Garden, only accessible by tour at 10:30 AM Tuesday-Sunday.