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Robbyn Mitchell, Times Staff Writer

Robbyn Mitchell

Robbyn Mitchell covers pop culture, entertainment, night life, local events and arts for tbt* and the Times. She is a native of Washington, D.C., and a 2007 graduate of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University in Tallahassee.

Phone: (813) 226-3373


Twitter: @RMitchellTimes

  1. Judge Toler of 'Divorce Court' talks breakups, more before marshaling Knight Parade


    Lynn Toler's heard about a lot of wild nights in her line of work.

    She's been the judge on TV's Divorce Court for 10 years and presides over more than 160 cases annually.

    "We once had a wife who slept with the best man instead of the groom on the wedding night," said Toler, 57, who has been a judge for 20 years. "They were married for 90 days and I was shocked they lasted that long."...

    Judge Lynn Toler has been presiding over TV's Divorce Court since 2006. She'll be meeting fans before Saturday's Sant Yago Knight Parade. Photo Courtesy of B2 Communications.
  2. Hey Hey! The Monkees will hit Ruth Eckerd Hall in May for 50th Anniversary Tour


    The '60s TV band that somehow became a real band, the Monkees, is hitting the road once more to celebrate a new album and 50 years of faking it until they made it. 

    It will be their second outing since the passing of vocalist and dreamboat Davy Jones. Original member Mike Nesmith toured with the group following Jones' passing, but won't be on the road this go round, according to Rolling Stone. ...

    Micky Dolenz, left, and Peter Tork will take the Monkees on tour starting in May.
  3. A Divas guide to sophisticated fangirling


    Way back in the '90s and early '00s, I might have been labeled a nerd.

    I watch anime and collect figurines. My Hogwarts house is Ravenclaw -- I'm sure because I've taken both versions of the Pottermore Sorting Hat Quiz. All my imaginary boyfriends are lead actors in Korean dramas. 

    Back before geek culture became de rigueur, people like me were weird. Now, we're just considered fans -- and we're driving the economy. #truefacts...

    The gang's all here. My desk starring (clockwise from top left) Annie and Erin of Attack on Titan; Sailors Mars, Venus, Mercury, Moon, Jupiter and Mars again of Sailor Moon R; Fuleco Mascot of World Cup 2014; Ravenclaw House prefect pin from Harry Potter, Kirito, Leafa and Kirito from Sword Art Online, BB-8 of Star Wars: The Force Awakens; and baby Groot of Guardians of The Galaxy.
  4. Bern's Winefest tickets go on sale Saturday, and you better not dawdle

    Food & Dining

    Tickets for the always in demand Bern's Winefest go on sale Saturday, and those in the know will have their browsers queued up that morning.

    Going into its 19th year, the wine and cocktail week of events sponsored by Tampa's Bern's Steak House kicks off at 10:15 a.m. April 10 with the Bern's Birthday Bubble Brunch at the Epicurean Hotel. The event features a mural unveiling to celebrate Bern's 60th anniversary and meal on the garden terrace prepared by chefs Chad Johnson and Jonathan Atanacio....

    One of the biggest draws is the week-ending the grand tasting event at Haven featuring 200 wines.
Times files (2012)
  5. Emperor Palpatine and Joffrey Baratheon to bring their reigns of terror to Tampa Bay Comic Con in August


    It’s still seven months away and already Tampa Bay Comic Con is announcing some big guests including Emperor Palpatine and King Joffrey Baratheon.

    Ian McDiarmid and Jack Gleeson will make their appearances at the Tampa Convention Center, 333 S. Franklin St., on August 6 and 7, the convention announced.

    Scottish actor McDiarmid is most famous for his time at the Sith Lord Darth Sidious in the Star Wars franchise though he’s been in more than 40 films since starting his career in 1976. Gleeson, who played Joffrey on Game of Thrones, considers himself a retired actor at the ripe old age of 23....

    Ian McDiarmid as Palpatine.
  6. 'The Bachelor,' Season 20, Episode 5: Everybody hates Olivia


    Everyone on the show seems to be crazy town, but none more so than Ben Higgins himself for expecting to meet someone genuine in this pressure cooker of expectations.

    He eliminated Jubilee in the middle of a group date because she had withdrawn considerably in the past two weeks. Jubes started as outgoing and bubbly – the way all the girls are expected to be – but her early one-on-one date got her invested in a possible relationship with Ben. She said it got harder to watch him go on dates and make out with others. Outside of Olivia, she seemed like the only other girl deeply invested in relationship with Ben. Not a relationship with The Bachelor, but one with Ben Higgins....

  7. Chinese New Year and Mardi Gras: Two holidays that look to food for luck


    Just in time for the annual new year's resolution relapse comes two holidays focused on the sweeter side of life.

    Chinese New Year and Mardi Gras are Monday and Tuesday respectively, and local celebrants have spent the past few weeks preparing to feast like there is no tomorrow.

    The point isn't just to satiate. These food traditions rooted in religion also offer those who believe an incentive to eat like a kid again. In both holidays, sweets supposedly bring luck. ...

    Cho Lon Market in St. Petersburg is selling an assortment of sweets for Chinese or Lunar New Year, when they are handed out to grant a “sweet life in the new year.”
  8. Harry Potter fans descend on Universal Orlando for a weekend of wizarding featuring Ron Weasley and Dumbledore's Army


    There's not much new at this year's A Celebration of Harry Potter weekend at Universal Studios Orlando.

    Organizers spent the third year fine tuning the three-day fan expo and drawing big name talent from the films to the theme park.

    Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint), Ginny Weasley (Bonnie Wright), Neville Longbottom (Matthew Lewis), Luna Lovegood (Evanna Lynch) and Katie Leung (Cho Chang) will take part in Q&A panels at Universal Studio's Music Plaza stage at 4:15 p.m. today and 4 p.m. Sunday-- and boy do they have some stories to tell. ...

    Luna Lovegood (Evanna Lynch), Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint), Neville Longbottom (Matthew Lewis), Katie Leung (Cho Chang, and Ginny Weasley (Bonnie Wright) sit for a media Q&A Friday night at Universal Orlando's A Celebration of Harry Potter weekend. The theme park event and expo runs through Sunday.
  9. At Universal's Celebration of Harry Potter, actors including Rupert Grint give a look behind scenes


    Rupert Grint could feel Alan Rickman looming behind him as he drew an unflattering portrait of Rickman's character Severus Snape while filming a potions class.

    "I was absolutely terrified," laughed Grint, who played Ron Weasley in all eight of the Harry Potter films. "He was a great actor. … I'm sad to see him go."

    Grint told a throng of reporters at Universal Studios Orlando's third annual A Celebration of Harry Potter on Friday night that news of Rickman's death was "quite a sideswipe. I was devastated last week." ...

    Bonnie Wright and Rupert Grint are making their first appearance at the celebration this weekend.
  10. Buckhorn vs. Kriseman, Fuccillo vs. Roz: Fantasy picks for Tampa Bay's 'Lip Sync Battle'


    Watching Oscar winner Anne Hathaway run and jump onto a prop wrecking ball in a tank top and men's underwear is a next-level type of entertainment.

    Such is the magic of Lip Sync Battle, Spike TV's wildly popular celebrity competition show.

    When the Ritz Ybor announced Wednesday that it would be hosting a local Lip Sync Battle on May 14, it seemed to go slightly against the spirit of television's best competition. Anyone can submit an audition video to compete in this local battle; 10 standouts will be culled from the herd of submissions after April 1. But the whole reason people care about Spike's Lip Sync Battle is because people like Hathaway, Justin Bieber and Joseph Gordon-Levitt — people we are accustomed to seeing in serious settings — get to let their hair down....

    The Ritz Ybor announced Wednesday that it would be hosting a local Lip Sync Battle on May 14. Here's our fantasy Tampa Lip Sync Battle cast
  11. Will Fox's 'Grease: Live' be the one that we want?


    Determined not to let NBC have all the criticism, Fox will premiere its first of two live musicals in 2016 on Sunday: Grease: Live.

    The popular musical about randy teens in the 1950s will be the network's first foray into the unwieldy logistics of producing a live musical for a television audience. Next is October's production of The Rocky Horror Picture Show starring Orange is the New Black's Laverne Cox....

    Also among the slam-dunk cast: Vanessa Hudgens, second from left, Carly Rae Jepsen, Julianne Hough and Keke Palmer, second from right, shown during a rehearsal.
  12. Oprah tweets about losing weight while loving bread and sends Weight Watchers stock through the roof


    Sound the trumpets. Call the watchmen. Toll the victory bells.

    Oprah Winfrey said we can eat carbs, you guys. We've won. 

    Eat bread. Lose weight. Whaaatttt? #ComeJoinMe

    — Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) January 26, 2016

    The billionaire talk show mogul and 10 percent shareholder in Weight Watchers International tweeted a video about her love of bread yesterday while simultaneously declaring that she was able to lose 26 pounds eating bread everyday. ...

    Oprah loves bread, is losing weight and cashing in, etc.
  13. All Out: How to avoid Tampa's Gasparilla mayhem at all costs


    Pirates and wenches can walk the plank.

    Tampa's annual answer to the Mardi Gras festival is a headache for anyone who'd like to go out and enjoy the spring-like weather without stepping in piles of puke or being knocked unconscious with hurtling bead missiles. We don't begrudge the binge-drinking scallywags their good times, but, you know, public drunkenness isn't everyone's bag.

    More than 100 years of tradition helps the Seminole Hard Rock Gasparilla Pirate Fest drown out all the other fun to be had in Tampa Bay during the last weekend in January....

    Festival goers watch as members of the Pinellas Weavers Guild spin yarn and weave textiles outside the McMullen House in the Heritage Village during the 2013 Pinellas Folk Festival in Largo.
  14. 'The Bachelor,' Season 20, Episode 4: Breaking up the band


    Watch out, moms of America. When Ben Higgins is done wooing the self-obsessed, attention hungry, relationship rejects of The Bachelor, he's sure to land a gig somewhere in his true calling: Little League coach. 

    Seriously, this guy spends more time giving pep talks and building self-esteem than an elementary school counselor.

    Olivia,  Lauren B., Jubilee, JoJo, Haley and Emily all needed reassurance from their TV boyfriend last night and he was there, clutch as ever, doling out compliments and kisses in equal measure....

    Ben sits down with mom, Emily and Haley to drop the hammer and end the twin love triangle Monday night.
  15. Legoland to open new 'Lego Movie' feature in 4D starting Friday


    WINTER HAVEN — Legoland Florida will add another brick in its wall of attractions with the opening of The Lego Movie 4D on Friday, upping the ante on a new 12-minute 3D feature by adding wind, fog and water effects.

    The film, which features fan favorites Emmet, Wyldstyle and Unikitty, as well as the rest of the gang from the hit movie, will be shown several times a day in the Polk County theme park. ...

    Emmet, Wyldstyle and Batman in a scene from "The Lego Movie." (Warner Bros. Pictures)