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His Dark Materials: Differences From The Golden Compass Book

We break down all of the differences between the His Dark Materials TV show and The Golden Compass book.

This His Dark Materials article contains spoilers for the TV show and some spoilers for the Golden Compass book. You can check out our His Dark Materials spoiler-free review here.

There are many ways to judge a TV or film adaptation—mostly, the same ways you judge original work. However, it can be fun, when it comes to TV shows and films developed from previously-existing source material, to also look at the narrative decisions the production made to make changes—or not—to what has come before.

HBO has officially launched His Dark Materials, an adaptation of Philip Pullman's bestselling book series about a girl and her alethiometer. Let's take a look at what changes writer Jack Thorne and executive producer Jane Tranter have chosen to make from The Golden Compass, the first book in the His Dark Materials book series.

His Dark Materials & The Golden Compass Differences Episode 5

You can read our review of His Dark Materials Episode 5, "The Lost Boy," here.

Holy moly. We knew that the His Dark Materials TV show was bringing in elements from The Subtle Knife early, most especially the reveal of Will's World, but I wasn't sure if Season 1 would introduce Will Parry himself. In "The Lost Boy"—a title which could refer to Will, Billy Costa, or both—we meet Will Parry, who is one of the main protagonists in The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass, second only to Lyra.

There are a few actual changes from Will's storyline from the books (he lives in Oxford instead of Winchester; his mother gives him his father's letters rather than him findhing them himself), mostly the details we get about Will's pre-Subtle Knife life are not changes so much as additions. It's a quiet, meditative look into what Will's life looks like, going to school and taking care of his mentally ill mother, before everything changes.

Elsewhere, the prediction that Billy Costa's TV fate would be that of Tony Makarios' from the book sadly came to fruition. Lyra finds a daemon-less Billy in the northern village and he dies soon after. Because, in the books, Billy escapes from Bolvangar, all of the scenes including Ma Costa singing to her son and the subsequent funeral are added. In the books, Ma Costa does not travel north with the Gyptians and Lyra.

Witch Serafina Pekkala gets an early introduction in the TV series. As is true of all scenes that don't involve Lyra, the conversation between former lovers Serafina and Farder Coram is new.

His Dark Materials & The Golden Compass Differences Episode 4

You can read our review of His Dark Materials Episode 4, "Armour," here.

We meet Lee Scoresby's beloved character in Episode 4, introduced via song, flying in on his balloon with his daemon Hester. In the books, Lee is more or less stranded in Trollesund after his previous expedition found itself short on funds and happens to find old friend Iorek, but, in the TV adaptation, he is specifically looking for old friend Iorek. Many of Lee's character traits, from his penchant for cardplaying to his bar fight scene, are lifted not from The Golden Compass book but from short story "Once Upon a Time in the North." Notably, Lee is less cowboy and more playful hustler here than in the books or the film adaptation (where he is played by national treadure Sam Elliott).

Another reveal that is moved up for the TV adaptation: the information that Lord Asriel is being held prisoner by the armored bears. In the TV adaptation, this is relayed in Mrs. Coulter's scenes dealing with the Magisterium, which were all created for the TV series specifically, as the book sticks so closely to Lyra's point of view. One of the characters Mrs. Coulter deals with, Cardinal Sturrock, is a character invented for the TV series specifically. You can pretty much assume any Magisterium machination scenes are not in The Golden Compass.

While the scene of Mrs. Coulter asking Fra Pavel to use the alethiometer doesn't appear in The Golden Compass, it does happen in The Subtle Knife, the second book in the series, after Mrs. Coulter has a run in with the witches. Lord Boreal blackmailing Fra Pavel into using the alethiometer does not happen in the books.

In the books, Serafina's daemon is a snow goose; in the TV she, Kaisa is instead a gyrfalcon.

His Dark Materials & The Golden Compass Differences Episode 3

You can read our review of His Dark Materials episode 3, "The Spies," here.

When His Dark Materials decided to move up the reveal of Will's World, we knew there would be repercussions in terms of further book elements that would be brought into the story earlier. This is on display in Episode 3 again, as we learn that Stanislaus Grumman, the Jordan College explorer whose head Lord Asriel claimed to have, is not from Lyra's world, but rather ours.

read more: Who is Mrs. Coulter?

As revealed in Episode 3 to Lord Boreal, Stanislaus is actually a former soldier named John Parry and—spoiler alert—he's played by the eminently charismatic Andrew Scott (Sherlock, Fleabag). So be prepared for this stellar casting to continue into Season 2. As Will's World is not properly revealed until The Subtle Knife, this is another reveal that happens much sooner in the TV show than it does in the books.

In an effort to find John Parry, Lord Boreal hires someone to trail his son, Will, who will become a major player in the story, and Will's mother. Is there a chance we could meet Will in Season 1 rather than having to wait until Season 2, as book fans might have assumed? Perhaps. 

Elsewhere in the episode, we get a slight change to the death of Gyptian Benjamin De Ruyter to make Mrs. Coulter a more prominent figure. In The Golden Compass, Benjamin is killed while he and Tony are trying to obtain information about the kidnapped children (and Lyra does predict it, using the alethiometer properly for the first time), but, in the books, Benjamin and his fellow Gyptians were spying on Lord Boreal, not Mrs. Coulter. There, he falls down a flight of stairs while trying to escape from Magisterium agents at the Ministry of Theology.

His Dark Materials & The Golden Compass Differences Episode 2

You can read our review of His Dark Materials Episode 2: "The Idea of the North" here.

Episode 2 of His Dark Materials made a massive deviation from the books, choosing to introduce some major elements from The Subtle Knife, the second episode in the His Dark Materials book series, in this first season: namely, Will’s World.

We’ve yet to meet the character of Will in the TV adaptation yet, but we have seen the world he hails from: which is to say our world. In Episode 2, we see Lord Boreal cross over from Lyra’s World to our world, something he seems to have done before.

“It’s clear he’s been crossing through worlds for years,” executive producer Jane Tranter told EW, “and we were fascinated by the fact that Philip gave us a glimpse of him in Book 1 and then went on to really develop him as a character in Book 2. We thought, if he’s going to be this big of a character in Season 2, let’s use him in Season 1. Boreal also brings a healthy drop of thriller genre with him and we wanted to make use of that.”

In general, the first season has had to expand the focus of the story because 14-year-old Dafne Keen can only, due to child labor laws, work so many hours a day. Therefore, Lyra cannot be in every scene, as she is in The Golden Compass book.

By spending time with Boreal as he crosses over to Will’s World, we not only get to know more about Boreal than we ever do in the books, we also learn a lot more sooner, such as the reveal that scholar Stanislaus Grumman, whose head Lord Asriel claims to have in Episode 1, is actually from our world, and his name here is John Parry.

Another change from the books? While Will’s World in The Subtle Knife is in the mid-90s, as that was when the books were written, Will’s World in the TV adaptation is contemporary to now, which makes sense as a narrative decision.

“We wanted to make it work for 2019 and [book series author] Philip [Pullman] was fine on that,” Tranter told EW of the change. “We then were just mindful of how technology makes a difference…”

Another early reveal moved up from its place in the narrative in the book is the truth bomb that Lord Asriel is Lyra's biological father. In The Golden Compass, Lyra finds this out slightly later in the narrative and from the Gyptians. In the TV adaptation, Mrs. Coulter reveals it to her seemingly somewhat unintentionally in the midst of an argument. It works well as a way to more fully develop Mrs. Coulter's character as someone who is not fully in control of her strong emotions, and who has a lot of anger and pain hiding just beneath that polished surface.

His Dark Materials & The Golden Compass Differences Episode 1 

You can read our review of His Dark Materials Episode 1, "Lyra's Jordan," here.

Rather than beginning with Lyra (Dafne Keen) spying on the master of Jordan College, the TV adaptation chooses to adapt a scene from La Belle Sauvage, the first book in the ongoing His Dark Materials prequel/sequel trilogy The Book of Dust.

The scene sees Lord Asriel (James McAvoy) dropping baby Lyra (and Pan!) off at Jordan College during The Great Flood. (Though, it should be noted that La Belle Sauvage characters Malcolm and Alice are also a part of this dangerous effort in the books.) This is the first hint that this adaptation will be expanding the perspective of The Golden Compass in the book, showing us much more of this world and faster than we get when following solely Lyra's journey in the books.

read more: His Dark Materials Gyptians & Their Real-Life Connections

Because of this widening of perspective, we are introduced to various parts of this world much sooner and more thoroughly. The best example of this in Episode 1 is the introduction of the Gyptians, whom we meet in a daemon settling ceremony that is not featured in the book. In The Golden Compass, Gyptian Billy Costa (Tyler Howitt) is kidnapped by the Gobblers during the annual Horse Fair, not at his big brother's settling ceremony. Because we see this happen, we learn more definitive details about the Gobblers early in this story, whereas in the book, the reader only has unsubstantiated rumors at this point.

Speaking of the Gyptians, His Dark Materials seems to have combined Billy Costa and Tony Makarios' characters. In the books, Tony is the first local Gyptian taken by the Gobblers, and it is his daemon whose name is Ratter. In the TV series, Billy's daemon is Ratter. This could mean some devastating things for Billy's character moving forward...

We also meet Lord Boreal (Ariyon Bakare), an artisocrat working with the Magisterium. In the books, his character doesn't pop up until Mrs. Coulter's (Ruth Wilson) cocktail party. On that note, we get a peak at the Magisterium, with their high ceilings and their robes, very early on when it was just a daunting, yet faraway body for Lyra at this point in the books.

read more: His Dark Materials Daemons Explained

We also see Lyra try (and fail) to use the alethiometer much sooner than in His Dark Materials she does in The Golden CompassAs Den of Geek's Louisa Mellor notes in her review of the first episode:

"One changed scene from the first book in Pullman’s trilogy (Season 1’s eight episodes adapt The Golden Compass, with the already-filming second season adapting The Subtle Knife, and any subsequent series tackling The Amber Spyglass) is Lyra’s first try at using the alethiometer. Like any kid in 2019, she attempts a Siri-like voice-command but gets nowhere. The gift she’s been given isn’t easy to penetrate. Like a truly great story, it won’t deliver showy answers from the off. It’s something special, something rare requiring an investment of time and attention that once made, returns untold rewards." 

Speaking of the alethiometer (which, should be noted, is square rather than round in this adaptation), it is actually La Belle Sauvage character Malcolm who leaves it with Baby Lyra, not Lord Asriel.

Check back in with this article, as we will be keeping it updated with any further changes made from the source material. Please let us know in the comments below if we missed anything!

Listen to our discussion of His Dark Materials on the Sci Fi Fidelity podcast:

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Stitcher | Acast | Read more of her work here or follow her on Twitter @kaytiburt.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

The Cast of the His Dark Materials TV Show, Based on The Golden Compass Book, on HBO
Feature Kayti Burt
Dec 6, 2019

Star Wars: When Does The Mandalorian Take Place?

The Mandalorian, the new Star Wars live-action series, is set during a generally unexplored era of the canon timeline. Let's discuss.

This Star Wars article contains spoilers for The Mandalorian.

The first live-action Star Wars series has hit Disney+ with some unexpected turns and new mysteries about the galaxy far, far away that should keep viewers buzzing throughout the season. One thing fans are wondering about The Mandalorian is when exactly it takes place. The show hasn't addressed its place in the timeline directly, but we're here to help guide you through when the Mandalorian's adventures are happening. 

The Mandalorian is set approximately five years after the fall of the Empire in Return of the Jedi but before the rise of the First Order in The Force Awakens, bridging the gap betwen the two trilogies. While this time period was heavily explored in the Legends (old canon) timeline, it remains a bit hazy in the current continuity. 

Stream Star Wars shows with a FREE TRIAL of Disney+, right here!

Here's what we do know: the Rebel Alliance has reorganized itself into the New Republic, operating out of its new capital on the planet Chandrila, the home of Mon Mothma, Rebel leader and first Chancellor of the new galactic government. As you can imagine, in a galaxy as vast as the setting of Star Wars, the rise of the New Republic has been great for some planets but not for all.

While many systems have been freed from the Emperor's tyranny, a remnant of the Empire still remains outside of the New Republic's influence, even after the Battle of Jakku. This means that the faraway planets the Mandalorian frequents are still either under the control of surviving Imperial warlords, have been left to fend for themselves, or have been plunged into lawlessness after the Battle of Endor. 

Most of the context we have for this time period comes from other parts of the Expanded Universe, namely the books and comics. The Battle of Jakku -- which took place in Chuck Wendig's Aftermath novels -- was the final conflict of the Galactic Civil War, after which the Empire finally surrendered, vanishing from the Republic and into the Unknown Regions, where they rebuilt their war machine and reorganized as the First Order. 

Read More: A Guide to the Mandalorians and Their History

As far as The Mandalorian's Imperials go, we get a brief glimpse at one Imperial enclave, the headquarters of the mysterious client (Werner Herzog), which is guarded by grimy and dusty stormtroopers. The client wears the Empire's sigil but it's unclear if he is in fact an Imperial officer or just a crook with Imperial sensibilities. We'll likely learn more about who these Imperials are in the coming weeks.

For now, what you need to know is that it's a time of relative peace for the galaxy. The New Republic is in control, but chaos still reigns in the farthest reaches of space. This is both good and bad news for the Mandalorian. 

John Saavedra is an associate editor at Den of Geek. Read more of his work here. Follow him on Twitter @johnsjr9.

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Star Wars Mandalorian Timeline
Feature John Saavedra
Dec 6, 2019

Jenna Jameson Confesses: I Quit Keto & Gained a TON of Weight!

For several years now, the ketogenic diet has been all the rage in Hollywood and Middle America alike.

If you're unfamiliar, the keto diet, as it's commonly known, is a low-carb, high-fat plan that promises rapid results and major weight loss.

Jenna Jameson Weight Loss Image

Keto has gained many high-profile enthusiasts over the years, including adult film star-turned lifestyle guru Jenna Jameson.

Jenna lost a ton of weight by adhering to a strict keto regiment, and she credits the diet with helping her to turn her life around.

Jameson struggled with addiction throughout the Nineties.

After getting sober, she found she went from dangerously underweight (down to 76 pounds at one point) to somewhat overweight (her assessment, not ours).

Jenna Jameson Lost Weight

In recent years, Jenna has been one of the biggest defenders of the controversial diet plan, even launching her own line of keto diet foods.

But now, it seems she may be ready to say goodbye to the diet that helped launch her second career.

Earlier this week, Jenna posted the pic below, which she claims is a document of her recent weight gain.

"Confession. I’ve gained 20 pounds. Ugh. I decided to take a break from #keto and live my best carby life," she captioned the pic.

Jenna Jameson Weight Gain

"The weight came back fast and furious. I know a lot of people are quitting keto because it’s hard to maintain and after a year and a half I concur," she added.

"Not sure if I’m going to go back full force or just calorie count. What are your thoughts? Love you guys!

Since Jenna attributes her weight gain to quitting keto, this might be viewed by some as an endorsement of the diet.

But one of the biggest criticisms of keto is that it's incredibly difficult to maintain for long periods of time.

Jenna Jameson Is Skinny

Virtually all of your go-to quick snacks or "lazy meals" -- chips, cereal, pasta, sandwiches -- are largely carb-based.

Keto, on the other hand, requires a lot of shopping and a lot of cooking.

Many people who live busy lives find that it's a difficult workload to maintain for more than a few months.

So in saying that she found the diet too restrictive, Jenna might actually be preparing to cut ties with the keto community she's been a part of for so long.

Jenna Jameson Before, After

Of course, the consensus from fans is that she looks perfectly healthy and much younger than her 45 years, so whatever she's doing, it seems to be working.

"Unpopular opinion, but I'm getting older and I've earned this big ass," wrote one fan.

"Sometimes it's nice just being a bit pudgy and not worrying about food. I say that and my ass looks like a relief map of the Moon, so I dunno. Either way, you look great."

We couldn't have said it better ourselves.

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What Kind of Dracula Can We Expect From the Sherlock Creators?

Will the Sherlock creators' take on Dracula make the Count a monster, gentleman or clown?

Bram Stoker’s Dracula was not an instant hit in 1897 when it was first published, despite positive reviews. But the figure of the vampire himself has since become a cultural figure with a status few others have achieved. Consequently, there have been an enormous amount of stage and screen adaptations of the Dracula novel, or featuring the character throughout the 20th century and into the 21st. 

And now, Sherlock creators Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss have made their own adaptation of Stoker’s novel, starring Claes Bang as the eponymous bloodsucker. It got us wondering what kind of Dracula we might be in for this time. There are far too many iterations of Transylvania’s most famous citizen to produce an exhaustive list, but there are a few broad categories that adaptations of the character tend to fall into. Dracula the character and vampirism as a metaphor allows for all kinds of interpretations, from those who wish to emphasise his monstrosity, through his upper class status, to parodying the familiarity of the character.

The Monstrous Dracula

Nosferatu

Famously, FW Murnau’s Nosferatu is an unauthorised adaptation of Stoker’s novel. Stoker’s estate refused the rights for the silent horror film. The film itself was nearly lost after a court ruled in the estate’s favour, ordering copies of the film to be destroyed.

https://www.denofgeek.com/us/movies/dracula/215286/the-bleeding-heart-of-dracula

Fortunately, some survived and gave to the world one of the most iconic versions of Count Dracula, named Count Orlok here in an attempt to dodge the thorny authorisation issue. Max Schreck’s appearance captures the inhuman and monstrous qualities of the character with his long, clawing nails and fangs. Murnau’s use of light and shadow to highlight Orlok’s grotesque profile is particularly effective and has become a visual touchstone for vampires on screen in its own right.

Not many adaptations have opted to take the solely monstrous approach for Dracula since, perhaps because Schreck is so recognisable, but also because another iconic take on the character was on its way.

The Gentleman Dracula

Bela Lugosi as Dracula

In 1931, Bela Lugosi would take on the role of Dracula in Tod Browning’s adaptation of Hamilton Dean and John L. Balderston’s stage play. His regal costume, widow’s peak, and slow-accented dialogue became synonymous with the character in pop culture almost instantly. Here was a new kind of monster, one that would seem charming one minute and capable of draining you dry in the next.

This version of Dracula definitely emphasised his aristocratic background over some of the more bestial descriptions that Stoker gives, but there’s always the sense of natural brutality behind Lugosi’s gentlemanly demeanour. Unfortunately, Lugosi would suffer from typecasting for the rest of his career, but his Dracula is arguably the definitive one and would become the template for many iterations in the future.

read more: Dracula vs. Frankenstein: Horror Movies Meet the Hippie Era

Christopher Lee’s Dracula for Hammer Horror would build on this characterisation, bringing a brooding sexuality to the character that has now been woven into the fabric of the character. Gary Oldman in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1994 adaptation is the closest we have to a mix of the grotesque and the gentleman in one performance.

Sticking closer to the book in terms of Dracula’s initial aged appearance and his slow return to youth, Oldman’s performance often feels like a blend of Schreck’s physicality with Lugosi’s sinister stillness and Lee’s attractiveness, allowing for the romantic antihero angle that Coppola pushes.

Watch Dracula (1931) on Amazon

The Comedy Dracula

Dracula: Dead and Loving It

In Dracula: Dead and Loving It, Mel Brooks takes many potshots at Francis Ford Coppola’s Dracula, as well as adopting Hammer’s familiar aesthetic. Leslie Nielsen rises from the coffin, pinboard straight, graceful right up until the point he smashes his head on the chandelier above his coffin. So arrives his iteration of Dracula, a vampire fooled at every turn by his own clumsiness and not-quite-good-enough hypnosis techniques Nielsen gleefully mimics Oldman and Lugosi in particular in both costume and style.

read more: 13 Essential Dracula Performances in Movies & TV

Though strictly playing a fictional version of Max Schreck playing Orlok, Willem Dafoe’s performance in the brilliantly-meta Shadow Of The Vampire is another example of the way in which the Dracula character on screen can be transformed by context. Shadow Of The Vampire is a fictionalised account of the filming of Nosferatu. Part horror movie, part cinematic satire, the film posits that Schreck was actually a vampire and his unusual appearance was his own. Dafoe’s performance apes Schreck’s movements beautifully and taps into the loneliness that other Dracula adaptations, such as Coppola’s, explore in the vampire character.

Other vampire parodies have used famous performances of Dracula as their basis even if not portraying the Count. Count von Count in Sesame Street apes Lugosi’s speech patterns while Petyr in What We Do In The Shadows is a brilliant visual nod to Schreck’s Orlok alongside plenty of other references to vampires on film. 

The TV Dracula

Dracula in Penny Dreadful

The various television versions of Dracula encompass all of the above types. There was the TV series starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers as the eponymous count, here posing as an American entrepreneur who enters into an uneasy alliance with Van Helsing (Thomas Kretschmann) to pursue a common foe. There’s the BBC version from a few years back, which gave us Marc Warren as Dracula in a slightly baffling piece of casting. There, he was around to help Lord Holmwood (Dan Stevens) out with a hereditary syphilis problem. Both versions present him as the gentleman type, ostensibly helping people but with his own agenda running alongside.

read more: Martin Freeman Mulls Sherlock Season 5 Possibility

The Buffy The Vampire Slayer episode, Buffy Vs Dracula, takes that titular concept and runs with it, having enormous fun with Dracula tropes throughout, from the count owing Spike money to Xander going full Dwight Frye Renfield. Dracula ends up “Eurotrashed.” Penny Dreadful would present the two sides of the Count, played by Christian Camargo. Characters from Stoker’s novel were present from the first season, but it wouldn’t be until the third that the vampire himself arrived. The first episode of the third season ended with Renfield coming face to face with Dracula, but the audience only sees Renfield as he collapses into a terrified scream. 

And now we have the new television series on the way. So what kind of Dracula are we going to get from Moffat and Gatiss? Given that they’ve been open about it being a “Sherlock-y” rendition of Dracula, but set in 1897, we think we’re looking at a Dracula that is both aristocratic and urbane. The brief glimpse we’ve had of Claes Bang’s Count in the trailer so far has a kind of sinister charm and politeness, likely as charismatic as he is dangerous, and always one step ahead of our human heroes. We shall have to tune in on New Year’s Day to find out for sure though...

The BBC/Netflix production of Dracula will air on BBC One in the UK on three consecutive nights, starting on Jan. 1. No word on when we should expect the three-part series to hit Netflix. You can read more about it here.

Dracula on BBC
Feature Becky Lea
Dec 6, 2019

Homeland Season 8: Trailer, Release Date, Cast, Plot Details, and News

Homeland Season 8 is the last season, bringing hopefully a happier close to Carrie's unending mission... and closure to some old foes.

In what is hardly a surprise, it was confirmed some time ago that Homeland Season 8 will be the final year of espionage with Carrie, Saul, and the whole CIA gang. Showtime president David Nevins confirmed it again at TCA, saying this was executive producer Alex Gansa and Claire Danes' call, who said they definitely wanted season 8 to be the end after Nevins asked "are you sure?"

This was expected, as Claire Danes said in spring 2018 the long rumored end was upon us. While the series has been on a creative upswing in the last few years, it was the show’s star herself, Claire Danes, who confirmed that the series will see its final twist in season 8 during an interview with Howard Stern. “Yeah that’s it,” Danes said when Stern asked if 2019 is really to be the final stand for the trials and tribulations of Carrie Mathison, the woman who has given up everything for country despite her bipolar disorder.

During the last season of Homeland, Claire Danes’s Carrie Mathison went from chasing terrorists to pursuing Russian spies who were hoping to destabilize the U.S. government. She might have prevented their worst agenda, but if you've seen the most recent season 7 finale, it came at a high cost--like the seeming sanity of Carrie, who was left to rot in an unmedicated bipolar hell by her Russian jailors. So what could be next?

Homeland Season 8 Trailer

The full trailer for Homeland Season 8 has arrived teasing a (predictably) volatile finish line for the series.

You can also check out the first teaser just below, which really is a tease as it relies on our own fuzzy memory of the series as Carrie's mind is called into question again...

Homeland Season 8 Release Date

Homeland returns at 9pm on Feb. 9, 2020. Brace yourself for one last ride.

read more: Shameless Season 9 Return - Everything We Know

Homeland Season 8 Cast

Sam Trammell (The Order, True Blood) is set to recur in the eighth season of Homeland, reports THR. He will play Vice President Benjamin Hayes, described as “a political survivor with an aptitude for optics who crosses the aisle to serve alongside the series’ new president [the former vice president] played by Beau Bridges. Bridges’ character believes tapping Hayes is an innocuous choice, one that could help heal the partisan divide, but the politico proves to be more dangerous than anticipated.” The actor is, of course, best known for his series-spanning role on HBO's 2008-2014 series, True Blood, as shapeshifter/bar-owner Sam Merlotte.

Our first casting news for Homeland Season 8 revealed some familiar faces returning for season 8. As revealed via Deadline, Nimrat Kaur and Numan Acar are reprising their pivotal roles that had taken center stage during season 4, the year Carrie went to Pakistan. The two previously played Tasneem Qureshi and Haissam Haqqani, resptively. The former is a member of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence who had infiltrated the American embassy by turning the ambassador's feckless husband into an asset. The latter was a Taliban leader who, with information from Qureshi, staged a violent attack on the embassy.

Hugh Dancy (Hannibal, The Big C) has meanwhile been cast as John Zabel, a D.C. beltway insider who is part of a new White House administration. There he is a foreign policy advisor for the president and a foe for political power against Mandy Patinkin's Saul Berenson. It is unclear if Saul is still an advisor or might be directly back at the CIA, or even if this is still part of Beau Bridges' President Ralph Warner administration.

Homeland Season 8 Plot Details

Here is the sparkly new synopsis for season 8.

The final season of HOMELAND finds Carrie Mathison (Danes) recovering from months of brutal confinement in a Russian gulag. Her body is healing, but her memory remains fractured – which is a problem for Saul (Patinkin), now National Security Advisor to the newly ascendant President Warner (Emmy and Golden Globe winner Beau Bridges). The top priority of Warner’s young administration is an end to the “forever war” in Afghanistan, and Saul has been dispatched to engage the Taliban in peace negotiations. But Kabul teems with warlords and mercenaries, zealots and spies – and Saul needs the relationships and expertise that only his protégé can provide. Against medical advice, Saul asks Carrie to walk with him into the lion’s den – one last time. Along with Danes and Patinkin, the final season stars Maury Sterling, Linus Roache and Costa Ronin, with Nimrat Kaur and Numan Acar also returning from season four in series regular roles. 

This is again intended to be the ending, and showrunner Alex Gansa has been teasing some major details in the past. Gansa told EW in April that the last hurrah will be set in Europe.

“[Season 7 arranges] all the pieces on the chessboard to make that a proper finale for the story we’ve been telling,” Gansa said. “We get to play this last season in D.C with the intention of taking us overseas for one last chapter. Season 8 will be overseas somewhere. We get to play a story with larger national stakes in season 7 and we’ll go back to a smaller intelligence-based season in 8.”

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

David Crow is the Film Section Editor at Den of Geek. He’s also a member of the Online Film Critics Society. Read more of his work here. You can follow him on Twitter @DCrowsNest.

Homeland Season 8 Release Date News Trailer
News David Crow
Dec 6, 2019

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Jack Ryan Season 3 Release Date, Cast, Story, News, and More

John Krasinski will return for Jack Ryan Season 3, which landed an early order from Amazon.

Long live the Ryanverse! John Krasinski and his version of Jack Ryan will get a third tour of duty on Amazon, which gave an advance order for Jack Ryan Season 3 back in February 2019.

Paul Scheuring, best known as the creator of Fox’s Prison Break, will step in as the new showrunner for Jack Ryan, starting with the still-developing Season 3. The move finalizes a process that saw the exit of Carlton Cuse (LostBates Motel), who, after initially developing the Tom Clancy revival property for television with co-showrunner Graham Roland, stepped back from his day-to-day showrunner duties back in March, as Deadline reported.

Cuse was initially set to be replaced by All the Money in the World scribe David Scarpa, who did not stay long in the position. Consequently, Cuse’s showrunner tenure will last be reflected with Season 2 of the series, which premieres in November. However, Cuse will remain onboard the creative roster as an executive producer.

Besides the aforementioned crime drama, Prison Break, which initially ran from 2005 to 2008, eventually getting a 2017 revival season (with another season potentially lined up), new showrunner Paul Scheuring brings television experience from Discovery Channel's 2014 Richard Madden-headlined historically-based frozen claim-jumper miniseries, Klondike (which co-starred Jack Ryan's Abbie Cornish,) and ABC’s single-season 2013 thriller series, Zero Hour. Amongst his work in the medium of film, he co-wrote the 2018 Gerard Butler-headlined crime drama, Den of Thieves, and the 2003 Vin Diesel actioner, A Man Apart.

Jack Ryan Season 3 Release Date

Jack Ryan season 3 does not yet have a release date yet, but we’ll keep you posted. Both previous seasons of the series premiered in the fall.

Jack Ryan Season 3 Cast

Jack Ryan stars Krasinski as the titular ex-Marine turned CIA analyst who tracks the finances of terrorist organizations.  Alongside John Krasinski, Abbie Cornish and Wendell Pierce co-star. Joining the cast for season two are Michael Kelly (House of Cards), Noomi Rapace (Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Jovan Adepo (The Leftovers), Jordi Molla (Genius), Cristina Umaña (Narcos), and Francisco Denis.

Jack Ryan Season 3 Story

The character Jack Ryan was created by author Tom Clancy and first appeared in his 1984 novel The Hunt For Red October. To date, there are 28 novels (most penned by Clancy) that feature Jack Ryan or his friends in the “Ryanverse.” The character has been on the big screen five times, played over the years by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck, and Chris Pine. Krasinski joined that fraternity with season one and is now the longest tenured Jack Ryan.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Joseph Baxter is a contributor for Den of Geek and Syfy Wire. You can find his work here. Follow him on Twitter @josbaxter.

John Krasinski, Jack Ryan Season 3 Release Date, Cast, Story
News Chris Longo Joseph Baxter
Dec 6, 2019

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 Release Date, Cast, Story Details, and More

Netflix has ordered The Umbrella Academy Season 2. No surprise there! Here is everything we know about the next Hargreeves adventure.

The Umbrella Academy helped bring a new kind of superhero story to Netflix, and now the streaming service has greenlit The Umbrella Academy Season 2. No big surprise there!

Not only did The Umbrella Academy generate plenty of online chatter for Netflix, but it's pretty clear that showrunner Steve Blackman anticipated The Umbrella Academy season 2 all along. The show's first season ends on about as cliffhanger-y a cliffhanger as possible with the central Umbrella Academy kids heading off into the past to parts and times unknown. 

Now that season 2 is a go, here's everything you need to know about the show:

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 Release Date

The Umbrella Academy season 2 does not have a release date yet. According to Tom Hopper's Instagram account, filming has wrapped on season 2 as of late November. That means a mid-to-late 2020 release date might not be out of the question.

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 Cast

Netflix has announced a trio of newcomers for The Umbrella Academy Season 2, all of whom are set as series regulars (pictured immediately below left-to-right).

Ritu Arya (HumansDoctors) will play Lila, “a chameleon who can be as brilliant or as clinically insane as the situation requires. Unpredictable, mischievous and sarcastic, Lila’s gifted with a twisted sense of humor.”

Yusuf Gatewood (The OriginalsGood Omens) will play Raymond, “a born leader with the smarts, gravitas, and the confidence to never have to prove it to anyone. He is warm, dedicated and has the innate ability to disarm you with a look. A devoted husband, he’s the kind of guy everyone wants to know.”

Marin Ireland (Sneaky PeteThe Miseducation of Cameron Post) will play Sissy, “a fearless, no-nonsense Texas mom who married young for all the wrong reasons. Still in her prime, she’s eager to rediscover what life and love has to offer.”

None of these characters have obvious analogues in the second volume of The Umbrella Academy comic book series so it will be interesting to see how they shake out. 

further reading: The Umbrella Academy Was Reportedly a Big Hit for Netflix

The whole Hargreeves crew will be back, naturally. This includes Number One Luther (Tom Hopper), Number Two Diego (David Castañeda), Number Three Allison (Emmy Raver-Lampman), Number Four Klaus (Robert Sheehan), Number Five (Aiden Gallagher), the dearly departed Number Six Ben (Justin Min), and Number Seven Vanya (Ellen Page). 

Reginald Hargreeves (Colm Feore), Pogo, and Cha-Cha  (Mary J. Blige) are dead but anything can happen when time travel is involved. Hazel (Cameron Britton) and Agnes (Sheila McCarthy) are out there in time somewhere.

The Umbrella Academy Season 2 Story Details

The Umbrella Academy showrunner Steve Blackman shared a bit of news from season 2's production. That script sure does look like the script for season 2 episode 1. "Right Back Where We Started" is an excellent choice of title for a season that will presumably take The Umbrella Academy right back where they started.



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The Umbrella Academy Season 1 adapted the majority of the comic's first volume, "Apocalypse Suite," with a little bit of the second volume, "Dallas" thrown in. The Umbrella Academy creator Gerard Way told us that he anticipates more of "Dallas" in The Umbrella Academy season 2.

"When all said and done there's eight graphic novels planned total," Way said. "We're two series ahead of the show and I think right now there's only been a couple things used from Dallas' so I think if there's a potential season two you would see some things potentially from 'Dallas.'"

We delved further into exactly what from "Dallas" and volume 3 "Hotel Oblivion," could be included in The Umbrella Academy season 2 here.

We're not the only ones who want to know what happens next. The cast is dying to find out what's next for the Hargreeves family, too:

"For me, it's gonna be so interesting to explore Vanya," Ellen Page said of her new White Violin persona. "It's like Vanya 2.0 - less repressed and what does that mean in the good ways and bad kinda thing."

Klaus Hargreeves actor Robert Sheehan said he appreciates the "transformative" nature of Klaus and that we can expect more of it in The Umbrella Academy season 2.

further reading: The Umbrella Academy Review

"He's constantly emerging into this new self. He's a butterfly that refuses to leave the cocoon, or he keeps going back into it. I'd love to see Klaus re-formed as something else, different completely. Hopefully, if the murmurings are to be believed, that's kind of where we're headed. I think he's in a constant state of change and that would bring much excitement for me."

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Alec Bojalad is TV Editor at Den of Geek and TCA member. Read more of his stuff here. Follow him at his creatively-named Twitter handle @alecbojalad

Joseph Baxter is a contributor for Den of Geek and Syfy Wire. You can find his work here. Follow him on Twitter @josbaxter.

The Umbrella Academy cast; Netflix
News Alec Bojalad Joseph Baxter
Dec 6, 2019

Steven Universe: Future Release Date, Cast, Trailer and News

It's official! Steven Universe season 6 is really happening at Cartoon Network. Here is everything we know!

Steven Universe: The Movie seemed like it could have easily been the wrap up to the entire series but there's more to come! We've learned that Steven Universe will continue with Steven Universe season 6, titled Steven Universe: Future, and we've got the new opening theme below.

As you can hear it's an all new song featuring a shortened mix of 'Happily Ever After' from Steven Universe: The Movie! Cartoon Network also revealed this is a "new epilogue limited series." 

Steven Universe: Future Trailer

The first trailer for Steven Universe: Future is here and if you thought things would be chill for Steven this season? You're wrong! Pink Pearl? Jasper? Aqua Marine? We need more right now!

Steven Universe: Future Release Date

As revealed on the Steven Universe Facebook page, Steven Universe: Future will premiere on December 7th, 2019 in a one-hour special that begins at 8PM. We've go the episode descriptions for the four episodes that will air.

Steven Universe Future Episode 1 "Little Homeschool"

Welcome to Little Homeschool, a place on earth where Gems from all over the universe can come learn how to live together peacefully! But there's one Gem who refuses to attend. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 2 "Guidance"

Amethyst has been helping Little Homeschool Gems find jobs on the boardwalk, but Steven isn't sure about her approach. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 3 "Rose Buds"

Steven gets a surprise visit from some old friends, and an even more surprising introduction to some new ones. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 4 "Volleyball"

Steven is determined to help Pink Diamond's original Pearl heal the scar on her face. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe: Future Story

In a synopsis provided by Cartoon Network, Steven Universe: Future will focus on Steven finally dealing with many of his issues!

After saving the universe, Steven is still at it, tying up every loose end. But as he runs out of other people’s problems to solve, he’ll finally have to face his own.

 

read more: Steven Universe: The Essential Episodes

Steven Universe: Future Episodes

Steven Universe Future Episode 1 "Little Homeschool"

Welcome to Little Homeschool, a place on earth where Gems from all over the universe can come learn how to live together peacefully! But there's one Gem who refuses to attend. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 2 "Guidance"

Amethyst has been helping Little Homeschool Gems find jobs on the boardwalk, but Steven isn't sure about her approach. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 3 "Rose Buds"

Steven gets a surprise visit from some old friends, and an even more surprising introduction to some new ones. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 4 "Volleyball"

Steven is determined to help Pink Diamond's original Pearl heal the scar on her face. (December 7, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 5 "Bluebird"

Steven questions the motives of a mysterious fusion that suddenly shows up at his house. (December 14, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 6 "A Very Special Episode"

Rainbow Quartz 2.0 promised to hang out with Onion the same day Sunstone scheduled a home safety Geminar! How can Steven be in two places, and two fusions, at once? (December 14, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 7 "Snow Day"

Steven and the Crystal Gems get a chance to catch up when they're all snowed in together. (December 21, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 8 "Why So Blue?"

Steven has heard rumors of a pair of Gems that are still destroying worlds. If he can't stop them, maybe Lapis can. (December 21, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 9 "Little Graduation"

Steven and the Gems celebrate Little Homeschool's first graduating class. (December 28, 2019)

Steven Universe Future Episode 10 "Prickly Pair"

After leaving Little Homeschool, Steven has found a new hobby, plants. (December 28, 2019)

Thanks to the Futon Critic for the names and descriptions of these episodes!

Steven Universe: Future Cast

Thanks to the new opening we can be sure the entire cast of Steven Universe will be returning for Steven Universe: Future!

Steven Universe: Future Villains

From the opening theme we got a brief shot of what seem to be the villains for Steven Universe: Future. There are some things that look like watermelon Steven's, a Jasper, something that looks like an Aquamarine,, a sneak-like creature (was Ronaldo right about SNEEPLE?), two Lapis Lazulis, and a White Diamond thing? We can't wait to find out more!

Keep checking back to Den of Geek for all things Steven Universe: Future. We'll update this article as we learn more! Don't forget to check out our list of the essential Steven Universe episodes!

Shamus Kelley is a pop culture/television writer and official Power Rangers expert. Follow him on Twitter! Read more articles by him here!

Steven Universe Season 6 Release Date Cast Story
News Shamus Kelley
Dec 6, 2019

Star Wars: The Mandalorian Episode 5 Ending Explained

The Mandalorian episode 5 ends with a tiny hint of things to come for the live-action Star Wars show. Let's discuss.

The Star Wars article contains spoilers for The Mandalorian.

The Mandalorian episode 5, titled "The Gunslinger," is a thrill ride from start to finish. Like last week's "Sanctuary," this episode takes a more standalone, slice-of-life approach to the storytelling, with only hints of the larger arc at work. Early on, Mando has to make an emergency landing on Tatooine after the Razor Crest is attacked by a bounty hunter in space. To pay for repairs on his ship, Mando agrees to help newbie bounty hunter Toro Calican (Jake Cannavale) capture an assassin named Fennec Shand (Ming-Na Wen). A few twists and double crosses later, Mando has finished the job and is zipping away from Mos Eisley in search of a new hideout for him and The Child (aka Baby Yoda). 

But there's more to the episode's ending than meets the eye. A final scene directly after Mando leaves the planet teases a major reveal that could completely change the course of the show and give fans the cameo they've been waiting for. As Shand lies dead in the sands beyond Mos Eisley after being murdered by Toro, a mysterious figure approaches her body. We never see the stranger's face but get a glimpse of their cape and hear the sound of spurs as they walk. The credits roll just as the stranger reaches down to examine Shand. 

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Not only do the sound of spurs and the enigmatic introduction suggest that this "new" character is "The Gunslinger" in question but that it's someone we've potentially seen in the Star Wars saga before. To put it bluntly, it seems that The Mandalorian is teasing the return of Boba Fett.

As you might remember, the sound of spurs famously followed the bounty hunter's every step in the Original Trilogy. You can hear spurs, for example, when Boba is walking around Cloud City in The Empire Strikes Back. He's perhaps the Skywalker Saga's most Western-influenced character, a Man with No Face emulating Clint Eastwood's Man with No Name, so the spurs are no accident. But we're not going by the insinuation made by a sound alone. 

There's also the fact that the episode is so purposefully set on Tatooine, a beloved Star Wars location the episode goes through great lengths to recreate. From the round architecture and tight, sandy streets of the criminal outpost to THE cantina George Lucas first dreamed up in 1977, The Mandalorian establishes the look and feel of Tatooine, giving it the distinct sense of place most other outposts on the show have lacked thus far (the farming village on Sorgan is an exception). Why is Tatooine so important in this case? It is the last known location and assumed resting place of Boba Fett, who we last saw being swallowed up by the sarlacc to be digested for the next thousand years. But did this early Return of the Jedi twist really spell the end for one of the most beloved characters in Star Wars (despite his limited screen time)? Hardly. 

For one thing, Lucasfilm previously planned to resurrect the character in a standalone Star Wars Story movie, first to be directed by Josh Trank (Fantastic Four) and later by James Mangold (Logan). This project was eventually canceled, but it's clear from the direction and tone of The Mandalorian that the studio is still hungry for the Boba Fett aesthetic. There's precedence for Boba's return, too.

The old Legends continuity knew that you couldn't keep a good Mandalorian down. In fact, Boba Fett had escaped the sarlacc pit by the end of 1983, only a few months after Return of the Jedi had released in theaters. In the pages of Marvel's classic Star Wars comic, we learned that Boba's armor and sheer force of will allowed him to escape the sarlacc, jetpacking the hell out of dodge, only to be discovered by a group of Jawas who mistook him for a droid and locked him in their Sandcrawler. Lots of shooting, another run-in with Han Solo, and a coincidental visit from Dengar later, Boba Fett had escaped the Jawas and was back, baby! Later stories saw him evolve from bounty hunter to the new Mand'alor, the supreme leader of his people.

If he's survived in Disney canon, too -- and how could he not? There's money to be made, folks! -- then he'd almost certainly be after the Child, who is apparently the most valuable bounty in the entire galaxy, judging from all of the other bounty hunters trying to kill Mando for it. But is there more to Boba than bounty hunting now that he's survived the sarlacc pit? Has he had time to think about his allegiances in the years since almost being digested by a giant sand monster? Late Legends stories put him in more of an anti-hero role than a straight villain, although his hatred of the Jedi remained. It's possible Boba might hold a soft spot or some sort of sense of respect for another member of his people (although technically he's a clone and not a born Mandalorian), but not take too kindly to the Force-sensitive baby.

We're just speculating, of course. There's not much beyond the familiar outfit and location that points to Boba in the episode. Shand mentions at one point in "The Gunslinger" that she's on her way to meet someone in Mos Espa, and it's likely that this stranger is that person. Whether this contact was Boba Fett all along remains to be seen. 

What we do know is that the final episode of The Mandalorian has the following synopsis: "The Mandalorian comes face-to-face with an unexpected enemy." As far as we know, Boba hasn't been a player in the events of the series thus far. It's more likely that he's reacting to the events and the large bounty at play that even Shand knew about while on the run on Tatooine. The recovery of this lost "asset" could be a ticket to a new fortune...and perhaps a new set of armor after the sarlacc's digestive track ate away at Boba's old one.

Friend or foe, Boba Fett's return will likely come with much fanfare. If this is even the galaxy's greatest bounty hunter at all...

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John Saavedra is an associate editor at Den of Geek. Read more of his work here. Follow him on Twitter @johnsjr9.

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Star Wars: The Mandalorian Episode 5 Ending Explained
Feature John Saavedra
Dec 6, 2019

Week 15 Predictions: Championship Week

Harley Quinn Animated Series News, Reviews, and Episode Guide

The Harley Quinn animated series is now airing on the DC Universe streaming service. Check out the NSFW trailer.

Warner Bros. has brough a Harley Quinn animated series to the DC Universe streaming service. Harley's star continues to rise as a character, and Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn was a major factor in the success of the Suicide Squad movie. The Big Bang Theory's Kaley Cuoco will voice Harley in the new series.

Harley Quinn is, of course, perfect for animation. She made her debut on Batman: The Animated Series, and her antics on the page and screen are akin to a supervillainous Bugs Bunny at times. The animated series comes from the executive producers behind NBC's short-lived DC superhero comedy, Powerless, Justin Halpern, Patrick Schumacker, and Dean Lorey.

Harley Quinn Episodes

Here's your complete guide to Harley Quinn episodes, with links to all our reviews underneath each.

Harley Quinn Episode 1: Til Death Do Us Part

In the series premiere, Harley Quinn strikes out on her own.

air date: 11/29/19

read our review of "Til Death Do Us Part" here.

Harley Quinn Episode 2: A High Bar

Harley is determined to become part of the Legion of Doom.

air date: 12/6/19

read our review of "A High Bar" here.

Harley Quinn Episode 3: So You Need a Crew?

Harley (KALEY CUOCO) attempts to recruit a criminal crew.

air date: 12/13/19

Harley Quinn Trailer

We finally have a full trailer for Harley Quinn and to say it's NSFW would be an understatement.

Harley Quinn Release Date

The Harley Quinn animated series premiered on November 29. There will be 13 episodes of this filth. We can't wait for more.

Harley Quinn Review

"Getting to truly see Harley letting loose is a total joy and feels far more fitting than her often PG-13 representations. This is a full throttle, turn it up to 11, no-holds-barred version of the character and it honestly feels exciting—not only because it's so crass, rude, and ridiculous, but also because it's fun."

Read the rest of our spoiler free review by Rosie Knight right here!

Harley Quinn Cast

Here's the official synopsis and voice cast:

The adult animated comedy series follows Harley’s adventures, where alongside ragtag crew of DC castoffs, she tries to earn a seat at the biggest table in villainy: the Legion of the Doom. The strong voice cast for Harley Quinn also includes comedic talents such as Lake Bell (In a World…Wet Hot American Summer series, Childrens Hospital), Alan Tudyk (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story), Ron Funches (Powerless), JB Smoove (Curb Your Enthusiasm), Jason Alexander (Seinfeld), Wanda Sykes (Black-ish), Giancarlo Esposito (Breaking Bad), Natalie Morales (Bojack Horseman), Jim Rash (Mike Tyson Mysteries), Diedrich Bader (Veep), Tony Hale (Arrested DevelopmentVeep), Chris Meloni (Happy!Law & Order: Special Victims Unit).

It was revealed during Preview Night at SDCC 2019 (via Comics Beat) that both Clayface and the Joker will be voiced by Tudyk as well. Alexander lends his voice to Syd Borgman, "an octogenarian cyborg"; Hale is Doctor Psycho; Funches is King Shark; Sykes is Queen of Fables; Smoove voices Ivy's "chill, wise-cracking houseplant"; SpongeBob himself, Tom Kenny, voices Clayface's severed arm...this show is nuts.

Harley Quinn Animated Series on DC Universe
News Mike Cecchini
Dec 6, 2019

A Website That Allows You To Scroll To The Bottom Of The Ocean With Facts, Figures And Animal Life Along The Way

Meghan Markle’s Iconic ‘Deal or No Deal’ Briefcase Hits Auction Block, Prized Prop Could Top $6k!

Harley Quinn Episode 2 Review: A High Bar

Harley Quinn keeps up its high bar as the gang crashes Penguin's nephew's Bar Mitzvah.

This Harley Quinn review contains spoilers.

Harley Quinn Episode 2

Harley Quinn got off to a flying and f*ck-filled start with the highly entertaining first episode that set up the core-conflict for DC Universe's first adult animation series. Episode 2 “A High Bar” finds Harley (Kaley Cuoco) freed from the grasp of the Joker, rocking her Amanda Conner designed New 52 costume, and generally ready to party so she does just that. accidentally crashing a Bar Mitzvah in an attempt to prove that she won the very messy breakup with the Clown Prince of Crime.

read more: Birds of Prey Movie — Everything We Know

Though this sophomore offering isn't as strong as the debut outing of Harley Quinn it's still a whole lot of fun and does a lot of legwork when it comes to setting up the pre-existing dynamics between the criminal underworld of Gotham. As she settles into life with Poison Ivy (Lake Bell) and her carnivorous plant Frank (J.B. Smoove) things seem to be coming up roses for the newly emancipated Quinn, but when the Joker (Alan Tudyk) gets wind of the fact that everyone knows it was his long-suffering partner who ended the relationship he decides to take matters into his own hands with a murderous stunt on Harley's favorite Morning Show.

Tudyk's Joker is a petty genius who is dedicated to destroying Harley Quinn and everything she holds dear, even if that's Good Morning Gotham and its sweet but doomed host Howie Mandel. One of the immediate strengths of the pilot was the centering of just how toxic Harley and Joker's relationship was and has always been. It's refreshing and actually enjoyable to get to see these dynamics explored in a way that's completely ridiculous--your evil ex is probably not about to kill your fave local TV host on live TV---whilst still feeling like it understands the power dynamics and manipulation tactics at play. Anyway, they don't call him the Clown Prince for no reason and just as she seemed to be getting over him Harley just has to get her revenge.

In classic sitcom fashion--an unexpected source of inspiration for the show which has so far delivered some of the absolute best moments--she decides to get dressed up and crash a party to show him just how well she's doing. Of course, Bell's worn out and sarcastic Ivy is less than happy with the plan but with some egging on from Frank Harley she goes all out: sexy new costume, sunglasses, a pet tiger, she's ready to shock. But it turns out that the Joker's party isn't some cool villainous shindig and is in fact, the Bar Mitzvah of the Penguin's nephew. Now, if that doesn't sound like a funny bit to you, this episode will likely disappoint as that is really the crux of narrative and gags here, it does work overall but the simplicity of the bit also makes it feel a little more like a mid-season filler than a stand out second episode.

read more: Titans Season 2 News & Reviews

That's not to say that's a particularly bad thing though as honestly the fact that the writers and DC Universe trust the show enough to just have a gag episode this early is kind of exciting. Especially when it features seriously silly deepcut characters like Kite Man who plays a key role in this episode as he tries to unsuccessfully seduce Ivy at the Bar Mitzvah. It's also Kite Man who ends up causing the only real major conflict when he uses his love interest's toxin to infatuate a group of little boys without knowing that shock horror: it also kills them. This leads to a pretty funny adventure as Ivy and Kite Man head back to her apt to get the antidote but the willfully ignorant villain thinks she's taking him back to hook up. Sadly, the end of this episode made this reviewer think that might actually happen in the future which would be a huge waste.

Another highlight of the relatively simple episode is that it once again showcases the power of Harley Quinn's ensemble cast. Not only are the voice actors brilliant but the creative team have apparently been handed the keys to the Batman-Kingdom, with Scarecrow, Two Face, Bane, and of course, Penguin taking center stage this time round. It's fun to see the stars of the Dark Knight's rogues gallery acting so goofy and if you're a Bat-Fan you'll love the fact that each of the characters are so obviously written by creators who know them.

read more: New DC Universe Timeline Revealed

As the Legion celebrate Penguin's nephew becoming a man the show also seeds a potential future conflict as Harley tries to emancipate the rogues from the wiry grasp of the Joker who turns up only to stress out his ex and showcase his power over the other villains. But this is Harley it's hardly an entirely philanthropic gesture as she's far more concerned with having a bad guy gang of her own--and even potentially joining the Legion herself--than with actually helping the villains escape from their horrible and machiavellian leader.

Narratively we leave Harley, Ivy, and Frank in pretty much the same place as we found them which may give us a hint of the kind of series this will be. Historically early seasons of adult animation shows like Archer and Venture Bros. have focused more on singular gags and jokes than large overarching plotlines and though the pilot promised something deeper, after this episode Harley Quinn may be taking that route too. We'll have to wait until more of the season hits to truly know but for now we're still big fans of this raucously unexpected gem.

Keep up with Harley Quinn news and reviews here.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Harley Quinn Episode 2 A High Bar
Review Rosie Knight
Dec 6, 2019

All The Best Reaction Memes To YouTube Rewind 2019

Funny dank memes about YouTube Rewind 2019

If you haven't seen YouTube Rewind 2019, go ahead and watch it here first before you scroll down. 

Was it as bad as Rewind 2018? We think certainly not, but ultimately we'll let you decide that for yourself. Many have found themselves rather bored by the video's likeness to a typical Watch Mojo video, and while the like to dislike ratio isn't nearly as stark as last year, it's still pretty heavy on the dislikes. 

It's clear that YouTube's goal this year was to play it safe, which clearly backfired. Now let's get on with the dank reaction memes!

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Bird lays off several Scoot employees

Christmas Movies and TV Specials: Full 2019 Schedule

Our essential Christmas movies and TV specials schedule is your perfect viewing guide this holiday season!

It's that time of the year again—white snow, slow roasted turkey, and plenty of holiday-themed movies and TV specials being cycled non-stop on your television screen. In the spirit of the holiday season, we've compiled a nifty, long list of these movies and TV specials to make sure that you don't miss any of them!

Using various network schedules, we've strung together enough holiday movies and TV specials to have you sick of the season well before December 25th, so get into the holiday spirit and enjoy the best (and the cheesiest) this Christmas season has to offer! If you're more inclined to streaming, we also have a list of all the 2018 Christmas movies you can watch online.

We'll continue to update this list as the holiday season continues, so expect some last minute additions between now and Christmas. We also keep updated the newest arrivals on NetflixHulu, and Amazon Prime for those in the mood for non-holiday-related onscreen entertainment.

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Our goal is to provide you with the most complete list of Christmas movies and TV shows on the internet. If we're missing anything, be sure let us know in the comments!

All times are EST.

Christmas Movies and TV Specials Schedule

We'll keep updating this every day with the best in Christmas movie and TV for you!

Friday, December 6

Magic for Humans Season 2 Holiday Episode Netflix
Spirit Riding Free: The Spirit of Christmas Netflix
Three Days of Christmas Netflix
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Switched for Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
12 Gifts of Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Bramble House Christmas (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Plaza (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Four Christmases (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Hope at Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
A Storybook Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Christmas with the Kranks (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Cherished Memories: A Gift to Remember 2 (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Fred Claus (10:00 p.m.) AMC
Small Town Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

read more: The Best Santa Slasher Movies

Saturday, December 7

Merry and Bright (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Bells Are Ringing (1:06 a.m.) HMM
A Holiday Engagement (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Moonlight and Mistletoe (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Sharing Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
'Tis the Season for Love (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas at Pemberley Manor (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Journey Back to Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Reunited at Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
The Nine Lives of Christmas (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Help for the Holidays (11:00 a.m.) HMM
The Christmas Club (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Sense, Sensibility and Snowmen (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas In Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas to Remember (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Two Turtle Doves (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Town (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas with the Kranks (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Mistletoe and Menorahs (6:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Our Christmas Love Song (7:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Love Story (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Unleashed (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
A Homecoming for the Holiday (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas In Rome (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (10:15 p.m.) AMC
Nostalgic Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

read more: The Best Christmas Movies on Hulu

Sunday, December 8

The Sweetest Christmas (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
The Perfect Christmas Present (1:06 a.m.) HMM
With Love, Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (3:09 a.m.) HMM
A Royal Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
One Starry Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
The Mistletoe Secret (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Karen Kingsbury's Maggie's Christmas Miracle (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Crown for Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Romance at Reindeer Lodge (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Detour (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas for the Books (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Plaza (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Christmas Carol (12:00 p.m.) TCM
The Christmas Note (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Love Story (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Wonderland (3:00 p.m) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Polar Express (4:00 p.m.) AMC
Family for Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Elf (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Under the Stars (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Dollywood (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
It Happened on 5th Avenue (8:00 p.m.) TCM
 Elf (8:00 p.m.) AMC
The Great Christmas Light Fight (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Grounded for Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
The Polar Express (10:00 p.m.) AMC
 Picture A Perfect Christmas (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
The Holly and the Ivy (10:15 p.m.) TCM
A Bramble House Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Monday, December 9

A Family Reunion Christmas Netflix
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Angel Falls (1:06 a.m.) HMM
A Wish for Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
A Veteran's Christmas (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Coming Home for Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Debbie Macomber's Dashing Through the Snow (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Sleigh Bells Ring (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas With Holly (7:00 a.m.) HMM
My Christmas Dream (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Magic Stocking (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Mistletoe Over Manhattan (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Love You Like Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Miss Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Homecoming (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Let It Snow (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Miracles from Heaven (4:30 p.m.) AMC
Our Christmas Love Song (5:00 p.m.) HMM
A December Bride (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Holiday for Heroes (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Miracle on 34th Street (7:00 p.m.) AMC
The Christmas Cottage (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Miracle on 34th Street (9:30 p.m.) AMC
 12 Gifts of Christmas (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Miracle (11:03 p.m.) HMM

further reading: The Best Christmas Movies on Amazon Prime

Tuesday, December 10

Welcome to Christmas (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Switched for Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (3:09 a.m.) HMM
A Cookie Cutter Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
The Perfect Christmas Present (5:00 a.m.) HMM
A Boyfriend for Christmas (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Fir Crazy (7:00 a.m.) HMM
With Love, Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Note (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Small Town Christmas (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas In Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Homecoming for the Holidays (1:00 p.m.) HMM
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas for the Books (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Detour (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Grand Valley (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Polar Express (6:00 p.m.) AMC
A Merry Christmas Match (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Elf (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Reunited at Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Ellen's Greatest Night of Giveaways (8:00 p.m.) NBC
The Conners, "Smoking Penguins and Santa on Santa Action" (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Bless This Mess, "Goose Glazing Time" (8:30 p.m.) ABC
Mixed-ish, "Do They Know It's Christmas?" (9:00 p.m.) ABC
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Black-ish, ""Father Christmas"" (9:30 p.m.) Lifetime
The Polar Express (10:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Love Story (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Angel Falls (11:03 p.m.)  HMM

Wednesday, December 11

Christmas In Homestead (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Dance (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Christmas List (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Family for Christmas (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Incorporated (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Jingle Around the Clock (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Sound of Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Romance at Reindeer Lodge (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Sharing Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Hearts of Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Matchmaker Santa (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Melody (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for Me to Come Home For Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Holiday Engagement (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (3:00 p.m.) HMM
A Royal Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas to Remember (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Mingle All the Way (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Sense, Sensibility, and Snowmen (7:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Under the Stars (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Goldbergs, "It's a Wonderful Life" (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Modern Family, "The Last Christmas" (9:00 p.m.) ABC
Christmas Bells Are Ringing (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Single Parents, "Good Holidays to You" (9:31 p.m.) ABC
Christmas Town (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Four Christmases (10:15 p.m.) AMC
 A Bramble House Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

further reading: The Strange History of the Die Hard Movies

Thursday, December 12

Jack Whitehall: Christmas With My Father Netflix
Christmas at Pemberley Manor (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Journey Back to Christmas (1:06 a.m.) HMM
A Dream of Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Homecoming (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Karen Kingsbury's Maggie's Christmas Miracle (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Cookies (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Finding Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Palace (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Hope at Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Land (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Wish for Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
'Tis the Season for Love (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas In Rome (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Nostalgic Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (5:45 p.m.) AMC
Christmas In Evergreen (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Northern Lights of Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Love Story (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas with the Kranks (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Olaf's Frozen Adventure (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Toy Story That Time Forgot (8:30 p.m.) ABC
The Great American Baking Show: Holiday Edition (9:00 p.m.) ABC
Gremlins (9:00 p.m.) IFC
Holiday Hearts (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Plaza (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
 Fred Claus (10:00 p.m.) AMC
A Legendary Christmas with John and Chrissy (10:00 p.m.) NBC
Christmas for the Books (11:03 p.m.) HMM
 Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas (11:20 p.m.) IFC

Friday, December 13

Once Upon A Holiday (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
A Veteran's Christmas (1:06 a.m.) HMM
How Murray Saved Christmas (1:30 a.m.) IFC
Christmas at Cartwright's (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
 Harold and Kumar 3D Christmas (2:30 a.m.) IFC
Mistletoe Over Manhattan (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Christmas In Love (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (4:30 p.m.) AMC
Christmas In the Air (5:00 a.m.) HMM
A Gift to Remember (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Gingerbread Romance (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Joy (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Bramble House Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Our Christmas Love Song (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Bells Are Ringing (1:00 p.m.) HMM
The Mistletoe Secret (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (3:00 p.m.) HMM
The Christmas Club (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Angel Falls (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Polar Express (7:00 p.m.) AMC
The Christmas Card (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Dollywood (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Stars (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
88th Annual Hollywood Christmas Parade (8:00 p.m.) CW
Disney Channel Holiday Party @ Walt Disney World (8:00 p.m.) Disney
American Housewife, "The Bromance Before Christmas" (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Fresh Off the Boat, "Jessica Town" (8:30 p.m.) ABC
How Murray Saved Christmas (9:00 p.m.) AMC
Small Town Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
 The Year Without a Santa Claus (10:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Under Wraps (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (11:03 p.m.) HMM
Frosty’s Winter Wonderland (11:15 p.m.) AMC

Saturday, December 14

Coming Home for Christmas (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (1:06 a.m.) HMM
A December Bride (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Sense, Sensibility, and Snowmen (3:09 a.m.) HMM
The Mistletoe Promise (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Miracle (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Finding Santa (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Grand Valley (7:00 a.m.) HMM
A Very Merry Mix-Up (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (9;00 a.m.) HMM
Write Before Christmas (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Card (11:00 a.m.) HMM
A Shoe Addict's Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Merry Christmas Match (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Getaway (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Holiday Hearts (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Next Door (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Polar Express (5:00 p.m.) AMC
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Love Story (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Matchmaker Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Elf (7:00 p.m.) AMC
A Homecoming for the Holidays (7:00 p.m.) HMM
It's a Wonderful Life (8:00 p.m.) USA
Holiday Date (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Winter Song (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
DreamWorks Trolls Holiday (8:30 p.m.) NBC
Christmas in Montana (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (10:00 p.m.) AMC
 Ice Age (11:00 p.m.) AMC
Nostalgic Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

further reading: A Complete Christmas Streaming Guide

Sunday, December 15

Let It Snow (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Happy feet (1:00 a.m.) AMC
Christmas for the Books (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Christmas in Evergreen: Letters to Santa (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas to Remember (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Merry Madagascar (3:30 a.m.) AMC
My Christmas Love (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (5:15 a.m.) AMC
'Twas the Night Before Christmas (5:45 a.m.) AMC
12 Gifts of Christmas (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
The Leprechauns' Christmas Gold (6:15 a.m.) AMC
Two Turtle Doves (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Jack Frost (8:00 a.m.) AMC
Christmas Connection (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Magical Christmas Ornaments (9:00 a.m.) HMM
The Legend of Frosty the Snowman (9:15 a.m.) AMC
Welcome to Christmas (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Frosty's Winter Wonderland (10:45 a.m.) AMC
Charming Christmas (11:00 a.m.) HMM
The First Christmas: The Story of the First Christmas Snow (11:15 a.m.) AMC
Little Drummer Boy: Book II (11:45 a.m.) AMC
The Christmas Club (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
'Twas the Night Before Christmas (12:15 p.m.) AMC
Nostalgic Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
It Happened on 5th Avenue (1:45 p.m.) TCM
Holiday Date (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Nanny McPhee (2:00 p.m.) AMC
Romance at Reindeer Lodge (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Mrs. Doubtfire (4:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas at Dollywood (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Last Vermont Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas in Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (7:00 p.m.) AMC
Snowbound for Christmas (7:00 p.m.) UP
Time for You to Come Home For Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Rediscovering Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Holiday Affair (8:00 p.m.) TCM
The Christmas Caroler Challenge (8:00 p.m.) CW
A Cheerful Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (9:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (9:15 p.m.) AMC
Remember the Night (10:00 p.m.) TCM
Christmas Detour (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (11:03 p.m.) HMM
Mrs. Doubtfire (11:30 p.m.)  AMC

Monday, December 16

Snow Bride (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Fir Crazy (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Made to Order (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Nanny McPhee (2:30 a.m.) AMC
Holiday for Heroes (3:09 a.m.) HMM
A Bride for Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus (4:30 a.m.) AMC
Christmas Dance (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas in Rome (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Operation Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
The Christmas Cure (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Trading Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Maggie's Christmas Miracle (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Best Christmas Party Ever (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
White Christmas (12:15 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Encore (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Very Merry Mix-Up (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Last Holiday (3:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas in Montana (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Cookies (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Family for Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Fred Claus (5:30 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Land (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Picture a Perfect Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (8:00 p.m.) AMC
The Great Christmas Light Fight (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Penn & Teller: Merry Fool Us (8:00 p.m.) CW
Greatest Holiday Commercials Countdown 2019 (9:00 p.m.) CW
A Godwink Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Holidays with the Houghs (10:00 p.m.) NBC
Christmas Love Story (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Love the Coopers (10:05 p.m.) AMC
'Tis the Season for Love (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Tuesday, December 17

Holidays with the Houghs Hulu
Reunited at Christmas (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Fred Claus (12:35 a.m.) AMC
A Bramble House Christmas (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Hats Off to Christmas! (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Love the Coopers (3:05 a.m.) AMC
Christmas Bells Are Ringing (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Catch a Christmas Star (5:00 a.m.) HMM
On the Twelfth Day of Christmas (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Magical Christmas Ornament (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Duet (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Joyous Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
The Legend of Frosty the Snowman (9:00 a.m.) AMC
Last Holiday (10:30 a.m.) AMC
The Christmas Note (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas in Love (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Jack Frost (1:00 p.m.) AMC
Rocky Mountain Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Bride for Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Love the Coopers (3:00 p.m.) AMC
Holiday for Heroes (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Cherished Memories: A Gift to Remember 2 (4:00 p.m.)  Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (5:00 p.m.) HMM
The Sweetest Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Homecoming (7:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Dogs of the Year (8:00 p.m.) CW
Welcome to Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Shrek the Halls (9:30 p.m.) ABC
Merry and Bright (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Miracle on 34th Street (10:15 p.m.) AMC
Nostalgic Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Wednesday, December 18

Christmas at the Palace (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Miracles From Heaven (12:45 a.m.) AMC
Christmas in the Air (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Christmas at Graceland (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
A Homecoming for the Holidays (3:09 a.m.) HMM
White Christmas (3:15 a.m.) AMC
Jingle Around the Clock (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Small Town Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Snow Bride (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Magic Stocking (7:00 a.m.) HMM
The Christmas Club (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Song for Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (9:00 a.m.) AMC
Donkey's Caroling Christmas-tacular (9:30 a.m.) AMC
Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer (9:45 a.m.) AMC
A Holiday to Remember (10:45 a.m.) AMC
Our Christmas Love Song (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Plaza (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Miracles From Heaven (12:45 p.m.) AMC
Holiday Hearts (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Town (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Miracle on 34th Street (3:15 p.m.) AMC
Crown for Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (5:45 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Love Story (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas for the Books (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Detour (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer (8:00 p.m.) CW
Masters of Illusion: Christmas Magic 2019 (9:00 p.m.) CW
A Veteran's Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Mrs. Doubtfire (10:00 p.m.) AMC
The Mistletoe Secret (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Montana (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Thursday, December 19

Christmas Joy (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
A Merry Christmas Match (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Sleigh Bells Ring (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas to Remember (3:09 a.m.) HMM
It's Christmas, Eve (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Train (5:00 a.m.) HMM
My Christmas Love (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Return to Christmas Creek (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Write Before Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Grand Valley (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Matchmaker Santa (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Merry Matrimony (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Northern Lights of Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Perfect Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Miracle (3:00 p.m.) HMM
The Christmas Cottage (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
A Dream of Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Sense, Sensibility, and Snowmen (7:00 p.m.) HMM
A Christmas Carol (7:30 p.m.) FX
iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2019 (8:00 p.m.) CW
Four Christmases (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Disney Prep & Landing (8:00 p.m.) ABC
A Cheerful Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Great American Baking Show: Holiday Edition (9:00 p.m.) ABC
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Year Without Santa Claus (9:00 p.m.) IFC
Love the Coopers (10:00 p.m.) AMC
Gwen Stefani’s You Make It Feel Like Christmas (10:00 p.m.) NBC
Christmas at Dollywood (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
 Rudolph’s Shiny New Year (10:15 p.m.) IFC
Christmas Wonderland (11:03 p.m.) HMM
Frosty’s Winter Wonderland (11:30 p.m.) IFC

Friday, December 20

Year Without Santa Claus (12:00 a.m.) IFC
Pride, Prejudice, and Mistletoe (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Angel in the Family (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Rudolph’s Shiny New Year (1:15 a.m.) IFC
Christmas Melody (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Catch a Christmas Star (3:09 a.m.) HMM
The Christmas Parade (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Once Upon a Holiday (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas for the Books (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Next Door (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas in Angel Falls (11:00 a.m.) HMM
My Christmas Dream (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Hearts of Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
With Love, Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Gingerbread Romance (3:00 p.m.) HMM
The Nine Lives of Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Home for Christmas Day (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Four Christmases (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Getaway (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Bells Are Ringing (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Holiday Date (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (8:00 p.m.) AMC
The Christmas Temp (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
A Homecoming for the Holidays (9:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (10:00 p.m.) AMC
 In the Long Run: Christmas Special (10:00 p.m.) Starz
Christmas in Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
Holiday Hearts (11:03 p.m.) HMM

further reading: The Best Christmas Movies on Netflix

Saturday, December 21

Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Ornament (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Love You Like Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Fir Crazy (3:09 a.m.) HMM
Miss Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Reunited at Christmas (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Switched for Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Family for Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Coming Home for Christmas (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Nostalgic Christmas (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Holiday Date (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Note (1:00 p.m.) HMM
A Cheerful Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Under the Stars (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas with the Kranks (4:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Wonderland (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Elf (6:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas Love Letter (6:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Christmas at Dollywood (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Montana (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Double Holiday (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Hotel (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (8:00 p.m.) AMC
Ultimate Hanukkah Challenge (9:00 p.m.) Food Network
Christmas on My Mind (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at the Plaza (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
 Christmas with the Kranks (10:15 p.m.) AMC
Last Vermont Christmas (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Sunday, December 22

Night at the Movies: A Merry Christmas (12:00 p.m.) TCM
Christmas Under Wraps (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas (1:06 a.m.) HMM
Crown for Christmas (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Finding Christmas (3:09 a.m.) HMM
A Wish for Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
'Tis the Season for Love (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas in Evergreen (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Our First Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
A Royal Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Journey Back to Christmas (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Town (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Mingle All the Way (12:00 p.m.)  Hallmark
Christmas Homecoming (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Double Holiday (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Bramble House Christmas (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Love Story (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Ernest Saves Christmas (4:30 p.m.) AMC
A Veteran's Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas in Rome (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Fred Claus (6:30 p.m.) AMC
I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown (7:00 p.m.) ABC
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Wedding Runaway (7:00 p.m.) UP
It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Kids Say the Darnest Things (8:00 p.m.) ABC
A Date by Christmas Eve (8:00 p.m.) Lifetime
Going My Way (8:00 p.m.) TCM
The Price Is Right at Night: A Holiday Extravaganza With the Cast of SEAL Team (8:00 p.m.) CBS
A Family Christmas Gift (9:00 p.m.) HMM
A Home for the Holidays With Idina Menzel (9:00 p.m.) CBS
Four Christmases (9:00 p.m.) AMC
Write Before Christmas (10:03 p.m.) Hallmark
The Bells of St. Mary's (10:15 p.m.) TCM
 The Polar Express (11:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas to Remember (11:03 p.m.) HMM

Monday, December 23

Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses (12:06 a.m.) Hallmark
Romance to Reindeer Lodge (1;06 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Land (2:09 a.m.) Hallmark
Merry Christmas: Mr. Lawrence (3:00 a.m.) TCM
Angel in the Family (3:09 a.m.) HMM
A Cookie Cutter Christmas (4:05 a.m.) Hallmark
Hope at Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Merry Matrimony (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Lucky Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
With Love, Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Holiday Hearts (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas for the Books (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Sharing Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Everlasting (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Cartwright's (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
General Hospital Holiday Episode (2:00 p.m.) ABC
Dashing Through the Snow (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Marry Me at Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (5:00 p.m.) HMM
A Puppy Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Four Christmases (6:00 p.m.) AMC
A Kitten Christmas (6:30 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Under Wraps (7:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on My Mind (7:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (8:00 p.m.) AMC
The Price Is Right at Night: A Holiday Extravaganza With Seth Rogen (8:00 p.m.) CBS
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (9:00 p.m.) HMM
The Christmas Concert (9:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Double Holiday (10:00 p.m.) Hallmark
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (10:15 p.m.) AMC
Nostalgic Christmas (11:00 p.m.) HMM

Tuesday, December 24

My Christmas Dream (12:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Our Christmas Love Song (1:00 a.m.) HMM
Entertaining Christmas (2:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Miracle (3:00 a.m.) HMM
A Dream of Christmas (4:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Sense, Sensibility, and Snowmen (5:00 a.m.) HMM
The Mistletoe Promise (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Two Turtle Doves (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Sleigh Bells Ring (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Montana (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Connection (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Princess for Christmas (11:00 a.m.) HMM
The Nine Lives of Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for Me to Come Home for Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Crown for Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Family Christmas Gift (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Pemberley Manor (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Very Happy and Friends Yule Log (5:00 p.m.) HMM
The Polar Express (5:00 p.m.) AMC
Holiday Date (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Elf (7:00 p.m.) AMC
It's a Wonderful Life (8:00 p.m.) NBC
Christmas Town (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (9:00 p.m.) AMC
Write Before Christmas (9:30 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (11:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Four Christmases (11:15 p.m.)  AMC

Wednesday, December 25

Christmas Under the Stars (12:30 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Graceland: Home for the Holidays (2:00 a.m.) Hallmark
The Christmas Club (3:30 a.m.) Hallmark
A Cheerful Christmas (5:00 a.m.) Hallmark
It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (6:30 a.m.) Hallmark
Merry and Bright (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Wishes and Mistletoe Kisses (9:30 a.m.)  Hallmark
Disney Parks Magical Christmas Day Parade (10:00 a.m.) ABC
The Mistletoe Secret (11:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Picture a Perfect Christmas (12:30 p.m.)  Hallmark
Christmas in Rome (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Love Story (3:30 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Dollywood (5:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Blue Ridge Mountain Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (5:45 p.m.) AMC
Christmas at the Plaza (6:30 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
When Calls the Heart (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas with the Kranks (8:00 p.m.) AMC
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (8:30 p.m.) NBC
Call the Midwife Holiday Special (9:00 p.m.) PBS
A Merry Christmas Match (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Cherished Memories: A Gift to Remember 2 (9:30 p.m.) Hallmark
 Fred Claus (10:00 p.m.) AMC
Christmas on My Mind (11:00 p.m.) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (11:30 p.m.)  Hallmark

Thursday, December 26

A Homecoming for the Holidays (1:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Duet (1:30 a.m.) Hallmark
On the Twelfth Day of Christmas (3:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (3:00 a.m.) HMM
12 Gifts of Christmas (4:30 a.m.) Hallmark
Hearts of Christmas (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Best Christmas Party Ever (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Veteran's Christmas (7:00 a.m.) HMM
Coming Home for Christmas (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
'Tis the Season for Love (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Jingle Around the Clock (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Romance at Reindeer Lodge (11:00 a.m.) HMM
A December Bride (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas at Holly Lodge (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Family for Christmas (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas Land (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Holiday for Heroes (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Double Holiday (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Snow Day (6:00 p.m.) IFC
Angel Falls: A Novel Holiday (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas with the Kranks (8:00 p.m.) IFC
Happy New Year, Charlie Brown (8:00 p.m.) ABC
Reunited at Christmas (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
The Great American Baking Show: Holiday Edition (9:00 p.m.) ABC
A Family Christmas Gift (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Four Christmases (10:00 p.m.) IFC
 Let It Snow (10:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Montana (11:00 p.m.) HMM

Friday, December 27

Christmas with the Kranks (12:00 a.m.) IFC
A Royal Christmas (12:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Homecoming (1:00 a.m.) HMM
A Bride for Christmas (2:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Four Christmases (2:00 a.m.) IFC
Catch a Christmas Star (3:00 a.m.) HMM
All I Want for Christmas (4:00 a.m.) IFC
Christmas in Homestead (4:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Miracle (5:00 a.m.) HMM
Hats Off to Christmas! (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Everlasting (7:00 a.m.) HMM
It's Christmas, Eve (8:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Once Upon a Christmas Miracle (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas List (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Magic Stocking (11:00 a.m.) HMM
Christmas Cookies (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Our Christmas Love Song (1:00 p.m.) HMM
Welcome to Christmas (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on Honeysuckle Lane (3:00 p.m.) HMM
A Shoe Addict's Christmas (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas on My Mind (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas in Evergreen: Letters to Santa (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Homecoming for the Holidays (7:00 p.m.) HMM
Mingle All the Way (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Sense, Sensibility, and Snowmen (9:00 p.m.) HMM
Snow Bride (10:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Time for You to Come Home for Christmas (11:00 p.m.) HMM

Saturday, December 28

Switched For Christmas (12:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas in Angel Falls (1:00 a.m.) HMM
 Christmas at the Palace (2:00 a.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas: Meant for Love (3:00 a.m.) HMM
The Christmas Cure (4:00 a.m.) Hallmark
The Perfect Christmas Present (5:00 a.m.) HMM
A Perfect Christmas (6:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Christmas to Remember (7:00 a.m.) HMM
A Cheerful Christmas (8:00 am.) Hallmark
Fir Crazy (9:00 a.m.) HMM
Check Inn to Christmas (10:00 a.m.) Hallmark
Small Town Christmas (11:00 a.m.) HMM
The Sweetest Christmas (12:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas at Grand Valley (1:00 p.m.) HMM
The Christmas Cottage (2:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Moonlight and Mistletoe (3:00 p.m.) HMM
Christmas in Evergreen: Tidings of Joy (4:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Northern Lights of Christmas (5:00 p.m.) HMM
Picture a Perfect Christmas (6:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Bramble House Christmas (7:00 p.m.) HMM
A New Year's Resolution (8:00 p.m.) Hallmark
A Godwink Christmas (9:00 p.m.) HMM
2020 Winterfest Preview Special (10:00 p.m.) Hallmark
Christmas Getaway (10:30 p.m.) Hallmark
Rocky Mountain Christmas (11:00 p.m.) HMM

Monday, December 30

Alexa & Katie Season 3 Holiday Episode Netflix
 

Tuesday, December 31

Dick Clark's Primetime New Year's Rockin' Eve With Ryan Seacrest 2020 (9:00 p.m.) ABC
NBC New Year's Eve Special (10:00 p.m.)  NBC

Thursday, January 2

The Great American Baking Show: Holiday Edition (9:00 p.m.) ABC
 
Christmas Movie and TV Specials 2019 - A Christmas Story
News
Den Of Geek Staff
Dec 6, 2019

Venom 2 Cast, Director and Everything to Know

Andy Serkis will direct Venom 2, which had better be titled Maximum Carnage.

Venom 2 is very much in the works, set to commence its parasite-pushing production in 2020.

Andy Serkis (Mowgli, Breathe) is stepping behind the camera to direct Venom 2, and the motion capture performance specialist is probably the perfect choice for a movie that will hopefully feature multiple symbiotes. He replaces the first film’s director, Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland, Gangster Squad). The film, of course, follows up Sony’s (Spider-Man-less) 2018 spinoff film, which stars Tom Hardy as the iconic Spider-Man villain-turned-anti-hero. The film made $856 million worldwide.

As the mid-credits scene of Venom – in which Hardy’s Eddie Brock met incarcerated serial killer (and eventual symbiote host,) Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson) – made abundantly clear, Carnage is coming to Venom 2!

Venom 2 Cast

Stephen Graham is joining the cast of Venom 2 for an undisclosed role, reports Deadline. Graham, an English actor, fields a prominent role in director Martin Scorsese’s recently released Netflix film, The Irishman, and will be seen this month as Jacob Marley, in the FX/BBC miniseries update of A Christmas Carol. Over in the U.K., he recently starred in Channel 4 miniseries The Virtues and fielded a Series 5 run on BBC crime drama Line of Duty. However, he may be best known stateside for his role in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, his run as Al Capone on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and appearance in Rocketman. Interestingly, Graham’s presence in Venom 2 will serve as a reunion with star Tom Hardy, with whom he appeared on 2017 FX series Taboo (a series that’s been mulling a second season for a few years now). He'll soon appear opposite Tom Hanks in the May-scheduled WWII drama, Greyhound.

Naomie Harris (28 Days Later, Moonlight) is in talks to play Shriek, a new villain added to the Venom 2 rogues gallery, reported Deadline. The character – the proverbial Harley Quinn to Carnage’s Joker – is the villain’s psychic-powered psychotic main squeeze, and becomes his homicidal partner in crime. 

The addition of Shriek seems to point to a storyline adapting the 1993 multi-Spider-Man-title-spanning storyline, “Maximum Carnage,” in which the character, born Frances Barrison, meets Kasady/Carnage while both are imprisoned in Ravencroft Institute, eventually facilitating a jailbreak alongside Carrion, Demogoblin and Doppelganger, embarking on a chaotic spree across New York, magnified by Shriek’s mutant ability of manipulating peoples’ emotions to turn them violent. In the comics, the effort to quell said spree required the collective efforts of Spider-Man, Venom, Black Cat and The Avengers. – This aspect will most likely play out differently in the film.

Of course, we expect Tom Hardy to return as Eddie Brock for Venom 2. In all likelihood, Woody Harrelson will also show up in a ridiculous wig to give life to Cletus Kasady, better known as the grotesque red symbiote, Carnage.

Venom 2 Director

Andy Serkis confirmed the director gig with an Instagram post back in August...

Serkis has directed before, notably with Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle, Warner Bros' attempt to capture the magic of the Jungle Book tales. His experience doing motion capture performances for films like the recent Planet of the Apes films, King Kong, and of course, his brilliant turn as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings movies means that maybe, just maybe, we'll be getting more symbiote action in the sequel. If Sony intends to curate their own corner of the Spider-Man universe, upping the ante here would probably help their case.

read more: The 15 Craziest Venom Moments in Marvel History

Kelly Marcel, who wrote the first film, is writing the sequel.

Venom 2 Release Date

Venom 2 doesn't have a release date just yet, but Sony had long ago marked off Oct. 2, 2020 as an "untitled Spider-Man movie." Considering how well the first Venom movie did with an October release, it would make sense for them to drop this one there, too.

Mike Cecchini is the Editor in Chief of Den of Geek. You can read more of his work here. Follow him on Twitter @wayoutstuff.

Joseph Baxter is a contributor for Den of Geek and Syfy Wire. You can find his work here. Follow him on Twitter @josbaxter.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Venom 2
News Mike Cecchini Joseph Baxter
Dec 6, 2019

‘Reno 911!’ is coming back as a Quibi exclusive

The Golden Compass Movie: What Went Wrong?

Now that His Dark Materials is a TV show, we look back at what went wrong with the Golden Compass movie.

With His Dark Materials currently making waves on HBO, we're taking the time to look back at what went wrong the last time someone tried to adapt Philip Pullman's beloved trilogy of fantasy novels to the screen in the 2007 flop The Golden Compass

Pullman's His Dark Materials was much praised for its rich, imaginative fantasy world, nuanced and ambiguous characters, and powerful anti-religious themes. Critically acclaimed, award-laden bestsellers with a young heroine in the form of Lyra Bellacqua, the trilogy seemed an obvious choice to follow Harry Potter and Lord of The Rings and become a blockbuster movie series.
 
New Line bought the rights after bringing Lord of The Rings to the screen, hoping for a similar success. The two stories are very different high fantasies, however, and The Golden Compass contains concepts less familiar to audiences than wizards, monsters, and swordplay. His Dark Materials was also occasionally categorized in shops as a children's book, unlike Lord of The Rings.

Further reading: His Dark Materials Season 2 Already Greenlit

This is an important factor when it comes to the adaptation. Say something is for children and for a lot of people you automatically impose limitations on what it can be. Consider how many times "for kids" is used as a derogatory term, even if that means you have to ignore the sheer abundance of brilliant stories that match that description.

It's self-perpetuating in many ways. So long as products for children have an air of complacency and simplicity their superiors will be tarred with the same brush, lending children's films a reputation that means some creators feel they don't have to try so hard.

The Golden Compass is one of those movies that taints other children's films by virtue of being compromised by an adult's idea of what children can cope with. With its unique aspects neutered, it becomes an anemic dirge at times, with exposition as subtle as a Michael Bay in the face. One character literally flies in just to explain a plot point before immediately leaving again.

further reading: His Dark Materials' Serafina Pekkala & The Witches Explained

Derek Jacobi almost salvages lines such as: "If we can save our children from the corrupting influence of Dust…" but ultimately can't do anything to stop it sounding like a line from Brass Eye. Christopher Lee is brought in to say a new line by New Line, whose own dust-strewn fingers are all over the final edit and some of the casting. Ian McKellen was also brought on board to have a fight with Lovejoy, but like the rest of the film it was a bloodless affair.
 
With Rogue One writer Chris Weitz both writing and directing, you'd be forgiven for thinking he should take the bulk of the blame, especially when he chose not to use a draft by renowned playwright (and Star Wars prequels dialogue polisher, yes, I know) Tom Stoppard. Weitz, having co-wrote and directed About a Boy, seemed a sensible choice after producing a seemingly light film punctuated by moments of melancholy and darkness, and got the job after making an unsolicited pitch.

further reading: His Dark Materials' Major Differences From The Golden Compass Book

Daniel Craig was cast well, as were Nicole Kidman and Sam Elliott. The child actors are occasionally guilty of being child actors, though it feels harsh to criticize them at all when their dialogue has the ring of a production enclave asking: "But are we sure people will get that Lyra's feisty and intelligent?"

The end result is dialogue telling us that Lyra is special in a film that doesn't always remember to show us the same thing. This is partly down to a studio imposed running time of two hours, cutting around an hour from Weitz' first draft. This came despite Harry Potter being successful with lengthier running times. You'd have thought that the studio who made Lord of The Rings would have more faith. But faith was another issue altogether...

read more: Who is Mrs. Coulter?

Weitz trod lightly around the religious aspects of Pullman's books, but still found himself having to remove even mentions of "sin" from the script, leaving an important part of the story flailing amid woolly and ridiculous euphemisms. He left the project—replaced temporarily by Anand Tucker (Red Riding, Indian Summer), who himself then left over creative differences—before Weitz returned to finish the movie he'd started.

According to Vulture, the faults of the film do not lie with Weitz. He apparently turned in a more faithful draft than Stoppard, whose script was apparently less about Lyra and more about meetings (according to a Philip Pullman interview with The Atlantic, which is well worth a read).

further reading: His Dark Materials TV Series Creator Discusses Religion in the Adaptation

While only a hint of the religious subtext was left in that script, much of what made Weitz’ first draft work was cut to bring down that running time. Actor Tom Courtenay confirmed that his role was drastically reduced in post-production, with the studio editing the full-length version down, removing its original ending and staging reshoots to exposit information now lost.
 
Ultimately, there were problems as a result of religious pressure and the studio being unwilling to risk wrath (wrath that would probably have descended on them at any rate), but this was far from unsalvageable. What really killed the film off it seems was the drive to get it under two hours, and the ensuing studio-imposed reworking of the movie. In short, it feels more like a bullet point list of things half remembered from the book than an actual film.

And we come back full circle a little here. The change in running time came because of a limited notion of what a children's movie can be, and what a younger audience can cope with. It's even more obvious in hindsight with the raft of young adult adaptations that the audience could have coped with a three-hour long version of The Golden Compass with its bleak finale, had New Line opted to go that way.

further reading: How Prisoner of Azkaban Changed Young Adult Cinema

It's hard to imagine a film in a New Line trilogy ending at a point that leaves the next film with a flapping tendril of leftover story, I know, but that's what happened in 2007: the finale of The Golden Compass was to be left over for the next film in the series, based on the book The Subtle Knife. Obviously, this film never came to pass, and we have two books unfilmed. Is this a bad thing? I'd argue that it is not.

Harry Potter had to leave out a lot of details from the books over its eight films, but His Dark Materials are books that are trying to do different things, richer still in just three novels, and so there's an inevitable loss of nuance even in a good film adaptation. 

read more: What Year is His Dark Materials Set?

There's no need to adapt every single remotely popular story, as if things don't exist until they're moving pictures on a screen, so if there's going to be an exception, it's good that it's something that rewards multiple readings. That uses prose to tell stories more effectively than cutting edge CGI even could.

Meanwhile, at New Line, the additional shoot and post-production on The Golden Compass not only increased the cost of the film, but stopped it from being good enough to recover costs. Indeed, it contributed to a financial situation at New Line that required a surefire hit from one of their properties, and lo: Peter Jackson was brought back onboard, and The Hobbit began to happen.

The decision to make three films certainly paid off in that respect...

Stay up-to-date on all things His Dark Materials here.

Feature Andrew Blair
Dec 6, 2019

Kendall Jenner Reads a Book in a Tiny Bikini on a Yacht

Kendall Jenner's down in Miami Beach, chilling on a yacht, soaking up the sun and hitting up parties, but she's still thinking about being someone else ... or so her reading list would suggest. Kendall hopped on a yacht Friday -- the SS Groot to be…

‘RHOC’ Truce! Kelly Dodd Reveals She Made Up With Vicki Gunvalson: ‘ I Wish The Best’ For Her

’21 Jump Street’ Star Richard Grieco Arrested For Public Intox at Airport

Richard Grieco of "21 Jump Street" fame tried to fly from Texas to Pennsylvania -- but he ended up in jail instead -- because according to cops, he had too much to drink. Law enforcement sources tell TMZ cops were flagged to Grieco's gate at…

His Dark Materials Episode 6 Promo, Release Date, Trailer, Cast, Plot, and News

HBO and the BBC teamed for a TV adaptation of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy, from the former producers of Doctor Who.

BBC One has teamed with HBO, New Line and former Doctor Who producers Julie Gardner and Jane Tranter to make an initial 8-episode adaptation of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials Trilogy, perhaps better known as The Golden Compass (Northern Lights, in the U.K.), The Subtle Knife and the Amber Spyglass.

The cast includes James McAvoy, Ruth Wilson, and Lin-Manuel Miranda, as well as Logan's Dafne Keene starring in the central role of Lyra Belacqua. Production on Season 1 officially wrapped back in December, and production on Season 2 is underway.

Read our review of the latest episode, "The Lost Boy," here.

Next up? Episode 5: "The Daemon-Cages." Check out the chilling promo...

And here's the synopsis:

Lyra discovers the horrific truth behind the Gobblers’ activities in the North. She must use all her wits to help free those around her and avoid suffering a terrible fate.

His Dark Materials Episode Guide

Click on the blue links to read our full reviews of already-aired episodes.

His Dark Materials Episode 1: Lyra's Oxford

His Dark Materials is one of the supreme works of imaginative fiction for both children and adults published in the 20th century. Northern Lights [The Golden Compass, in the U.S.] introduces Lyra, an orphan, who lives in a parallel universe in which science, theology and magic are entwined. Lyra's search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children, and turns into a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust.

Original airdate: November 4th, 2019

Read our full review of "Lyra's Oxford" here.

His Dark Materials Episode 2: The Idea of the North

Lyra arrives to her new life in London, determined to find Roger with Mrs. Coulter's help; the Gyptians continue their search for the missing children and the elusive Gobblers.

Original airdate: November 11th, 2019

Read our full review of "The Idea of the North" here.

read more: Who is Mrs. Coulter on His Dark Materials?

His Dark Materials Episode 3: The Spies

From the clutches of the Gobblers, Lyra finds help from an unlikely source, which helps her piece together more about her past and keep safe from the Magisterium.

Original airdate: November 18th, 2019

Read our full review of "The Spies" here.

His Dark Materials Episode 4: Armour

Arriving North, Lyra seeks allies in the witches, an aeronaut and an armored bear.

Original airdate: November 25th, 2019

Read our full review of "Armour" here.

His Dark Materials Episode 5: The Lost Boy

The alethiometer sends Lyra and Iorek on a new path, leading to a shocking but vital clue.

Original airdate: December 2nd, 2019

Read our full review of "The Lost Boy."

His Dark Materials Episode 6: The Daemon-Cages

Lyra discovers the horrific truth behind the Gobblers’ activities in the North. She must use all her wits to help free those around her and avoid suffering a terrible fate.

Original airdate: December 9th, 2019

His Dark Materials Episode 7

Original airdate: December 16th, 2019

His Dark Materials Episode 8

Original airdate: December 23rd, 2019

His Dark Materials TV Show Release Date

His Dark Materials arrived in the U.S. on HBO on Monday, November 4.

The show premiered a day earlier in the U.K. on BBC One, airing on Sunday, November 3.

read more: His Dark Materials Gyptians & Their Real-Life Connections

The series has already landed a renewal for Season 2, which was no big surprise, since Wales online had reported about a multi-season deal, shaping the series to comprehensively cover the entirety of Pullman's story, explaining, "The deal will see forty episodes shot across five series." Sounds great to us. 

His Dark Materials TV Show Trailer

The His Dark Materials TV show will see its first two episodes directed by Les Miserables' Tom Hooper from scripts by The Cursed Child writer Jack Thorne. Also directing for Season 1 are Dawn Shadforth (Episode 3), Otto Bathhurst (Episodes 4 & 5), Euros Lyn (Episode 6) and Jamie Childs (Episodes 7 & 8).

Here's the latest full trailer for His Dark Materials...

The previous trailer focuses on the destiny of Dafne Keen's Lyra.

The first official trailer premiered at San Diego Comic-Con. Give it a look below!

The intensely dramatic first teaser trailer for His Dark Materials has arrived.

Here's a brief teaser from February, which provided the first look at the His Dark Materials TV show. Famous people galore!

His Dark Materials TV Show Cast

James McAvoy plays Lord Asriel, the cutthroat explorer and uncle to Lyra, with The Affair's Ruth Wilson as Marisa Coulter, Asriel's former lover and a glamorous adventurer who invites Lyra along on her adventures. The Wire's Clarke Peters has been cast as the master who raised Lyra at Oxford's Jordan College.

Dafne Keen (Logan) stars as Lyra in the TV adaptation, with Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hamilton) cast as Texan aeronaut Lee Scoresby. 

Ariyon Bakare (Life, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) will play Lord Boreal, the character who serves as an antagonist in the novels. In his claim to infamy, Boreal inveigles Lyra (Dafne Keen) with the illusion of safety from pursuers, subsequently stealing her alethiometer (a compass-type device used to discern the truth). Tellingly, his daemon is a lavishly decorated serpent with an emerald head and black eyes surrounded by gold rims.

read more: A Guide to His Dark Materials' Daemons

Georgina Campbell will play journalist Adele Starminster. Campbell, who co-stars on Syfy’s renewed DC prequel TV series Krypton as Lyta-Zod, has also notably appeared on Netflix's Black Mirror in the episode, “Hang the DJ,” and on the third and final season of ITV’s Broadchurch. She was also recently seen on the big screen in director Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword.

Ian Gelder will play Librarian Scholar Charles. Gelder is best known for his role on HBO Game of Thrones as Kevan Lannister, having also banked a recent run on Crackle’s Snatch TV series, as well as EastEnders and Ripper Street. He also fielded a notable run back in 2009 on Doctor Who spinoff Torchwood, as well as a film role in the 2009 Vatican drama, Pope Joan. Ruta Gedmintas has been cast (The Strain) as Serafina Pekkala.

read more: His Dark Materials Creator Discusses Religion in TV Show

Rounding out the cast are actors set to play the nomadic boat-dwelling Gyptians, who take Lyra (Ruth Wilson) into the North…

Anne-Marie Duff (Shameless) as Ma Costa.

James Cosmo (Game of Thrones – Jeor f***ing Mormont!) as Farder Coram.

Lucien Msamati (Game of Thrones – Salladhor Saan) as John Faa.

Geoff Bell (Kingsman: The Secret Service) as Jack Verhoeven.

Simon Manyonda (Neil Gaiman’s Likely Stories) as Benjamin de Ruyter.

Mat Fraser (American Horror Story) as Raymond van Geritt.

The voice cast for the series is just as impressive as the rest of the crew. 

Helen McCrory (Harry Potter) will voice Stelmaria, Lord Asriel's daemon. David Suchet (Poirot) is Kaisa, gyrfalcon daemon to the witch Serafina Pekkala. American comedian Cristela Alonzo will voice arctic hare Hester, aka Lee Scoresby's daemon. Lyra's daemon, Pan, will be voiced by Kit Connor (Rocketman). Joe Tandberg (The Innocents) will be voicing main character Iorek Byrnison, a bear or panserbjørne Lyra meets on her journey. 

read more: Which Book is His Dark Materials Based On?

Mrs Coulter's Golden Monkey daemon doesn't speak, but his animal noises and vocal characteristics will be created by Brian Fisher (Detective Pikachu). Fisher is also serving as the lead puppeteer and CFX Coordinator on the series.

His Dark Materials Plot

Here's the official His Dark Materials synopsis from the BBC...

His Dark Materials is one of the supreme works of imaginative fiction for both children and adults published in the 20th century. Northern Lights [The Golden Compass, in the U.S.] introduces Lyra, an orphan, who lives in a parallel universe in which science, theology and magic are entwined. Lyra's search for a kidnapped friend uncovers a sinister plot involving stolen children, and turns into a quest to understand a mysterious phenomenon called Dust.

In The Subtle Knife she is joined on her journey by Will, a boy who possesses a knife that can cut windows between worlds. As Lyra learns the truth about her parents and her prophesied destiny, the two young people are caught up in a war against celestial powers that ranges across many worlds and leads to a thrilling conclusion in The Amber Spyglass.

His Dark Materials writer Jack Thorne spoke to Radio Times in April 2017 about whether or not there will be major changes from the book, saying this is "not something I can tell you about yet." The narrative room a TV show gives the story as compared to the feature film would allow more of the source material to be presented. (Notably, the feature film changed the ending of the first book. It was a terrible decision, completely gutting the thematic power of the book.) 

Thorne elaborated:

"I mean, the most important thing is being loyal to the books, and trying to tell those books as well as we possibly can,” he said ... The advantage of television is we can slow down. In the film and on stage they had so much plot to get through, so much plot to churn through, whereas we’ve got the luxury of having time to get to know [lead character] Lyra, and spend time in her world."

Thorne released a statement on what drew him to the adaptation that certainly gives fans of the book hope that the trilogy will be adapted in a way that capture the imagination and darkness of the stories better than the 2007 New Line effort did:

"It is such an honor and a privilege to be given this opportunity to delve into Philip Pullman's world. What I always loved about Bad Wolf's intentions with this project was the notion of sounding every note. The His Dark Materials trilogy are vast and glorious books full of beautiful characters and I'm going to work as hard as I can to try and do justice to them."

Pullman's trilogy, comprising The Golden Compass, The Subtle Knife, and The Amber Spyglass, takes place in a universe of "daemons," polar-bear warriors, witches, magical instruments, and theological philosophy. It's previously been adapted for film, radio and theatre, but this will be the first TV version of the world of its singular hero, Lyra Belacqua.

Philip Pullman had this to say:

"In recent years we've seen how long stories on television, whether adaptations (Game of Thrones) or original (The Sopranos, The Wire), can reach depths of characterization and heights of suspense by taking the time for events to make their proper impact and for consequences to unravel. And the sheer talent now working in the world of long-form television is formidable.

For all those reasons I'm delighted at the prospect of a television version of His Dark Materials. I’m especially pleased at the involvement of Jane Tranter, whose experience, imagination, and drive are second to none. As for the BBC, it has no stronger supporter than me. I couldn't be more pleased with this news."

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Joseph Baxter is a contributor for Den of Geek and Syfy Wire. You can find his work here. Follow him on Twitter @josbaxter.

Svalbard polar bear, His Dark Materials; BBC/HBO
News Louisa Mellor Kayti Burt Joseph Baxter
Dec 6, 2019

New Secret Marvel Project by Eve Ewing to Be Revealed Next Week

Ironheart wrapped up after twelve issues with last week’s Ironheart #12, and writer Eve Ewing took to Twitter this week to provide thorough writers commentary on the final issue, say her farewells to the character, reveal some behind-the-scenes drama, and finally to announce that she will be announcing a secret new Marvel project next week.

We won’t include the entire recap in case you haven’t read the issue yet, but there may still be some spoilers in the tweets we’ve posted, so if you’re worried about that, be sure to read Ironheart #12 first.

If you want to read the entire thread, start here:

Ewing discusses influences for one of the early scenes in the book from Star Wars and Lord of the Rings:

And also callbacks to the first issue of Ironheart, as well as how the art affects the pacing of the scene.

Ewing also talked about the things she wanted to accomplish when she learned the series would end with Ironheart #12.

And when it came to revelations about Riri’s father, Ewing says she had to win a battle with Marvel to ensure that S.H.I.E.L.D. would be the entity behind the trials that caused him to disappear from her life.

Ewing goes on to recap the entire ending, and again, we don’t want to spoil that, but it’s definitely worth reading through the entire thread if you’ve already read the book. Ewing concludes with the big reveal: a secret Marvel project which will be announced NEXT WEEK.

And she ended with some thanks to readers and a statement on what made writing Ironheart most worthwhile:

Ironheart #12 is in comic stores now. We’ll let you know as soon as we learn what Ewing’s next Marvel project will be.

IRONHEART #12
SEP190942
(W) Eve Ewing (A/CA) Luciano Vecchio
Ironheart’s Wakanda adventure comes to a shocking conclusion. With allies Shuri, Silhouette and Okoye by her side, Riri Williams faces her biggest challenger yet: her own past. And things will never be the same.
Rated T
In Shops: Nov 27, 2019
SRP: $3.99

The post New Secret Marvel Project by Eve Ewing to Be Revealed Next Week appeared first on Bleeding Cool News And Rumors.

The inevitable takedown of the female CEO

Southern Charm Stars Awarded Massive Raise Ahead of “Do Or Die” Season

Earlier this week, we reported that Southern Charm is on hiatus as Bravo scrambles to add fresh faces to the mix.

The new season may be delayed by as much as six months, but the wait will be worth it -- for the stars.

Naomie Olindo, Danni Baird, and Eliza Limehouse

RadarOnline reports that the Southern Charm stars are all receiving massive raises ahead of the upcoming 7th season.

They won't be receiving their checks until filming begins some time next year, but when they do, they'll be smiling.

Now, $5,000 may not sound like a huge raise when we're talking about a cast as affluent as these Charleston socialites.

But we're talking about $5,000 per episode. That's enough even for a millionaire to take notice.

Ashley Jacobs Crashes the Party

Before you whip out our calculators (that is a joke; it's not 1998), let's spell out exactly what that means for the stars.

A $5,000 raise per episode translates to an $80,000 raise per season.

That raise alone is more than the average American makes in a year, and is by itself above the "happiness" line (where money literally buys happiness).

Of course, with 16 episodes to a season, the stars were already destined to make bank.

Kathryn Dennis Stares Down Austen kroll

The leading stars on Southern Charm are payed at a flat rate, meaning that they do not negotiate individually like Real Housewives do.

With the bonus, Kathryn Dennis, Shep Rose, Cameran Eubanks, and Craig Conover will each make a total of $480,000 for Season 7.

Their previous per-episode income was $25,000. With the bonus, they now make $30,000 per episode.

While it's true that none of the stars are exactly hurting for cash by normal standards, they have to appreciate having the extra dough.

Craig Conover on the Water

The stars were already raking in $400,000 per season, but Bravo didn't dish out these raises out of a spirit of generosity.

Instead, the network has apparently deemed Season 7 to be a "do or die" season for the series.

While recent years have seen a whirldwind of drama about the show, too much of that drama took place off-camera.

Kathryn and Thomas' custody battle and Thomas' legal battle received fan attention, but that's not the same thing as ratings.

Kathryn Dennis and Thomas Ravenel, Kensie Preschool Graduation

Say what you will about Thomas Ravenel (and we absolutely will), but one thing that he was not was boring.

That's not really a compliment. A lawnmower gone wild that's also covered in scorpions also isn't boring. That doesn't mean that it's good.

Watching him be an obnoxious jerk on television was apparently part of the appeal for a number of viewers.

Seeing the way that first Kathryn Dennis and then Ashley Jacobs' mental health deteriorated while dating him was part of the show, unfortunately.

Southern Charm Cast Pic

Whatever enjoyment people may have derived from watching a rich a-hole make an ass of himself, Thomas screwed it up.

He had already sabotaged a once-promising political career by opting instead for becoming a criminal.

This time, he was accused by multiple women of assault, and it was claimed that he has paid to silence other women in the past.

Thomas may have avoided actual prison time (as the rich so often do), but he is no longer welcome on Southern Charm.

Rumors say that Season 7 will begin filming next month. We hope that Bravo's talent search pays off!

This Brainless, Single-Celled Blob Can Make Complex ‘Decisions’ – Livescience.com

This Brainless, Single-Celled Blob Can Make Complex 'Decisions'  Livescience.com

First vaping death reported in South Carolina – wpde.com

  1. First vaping death reported in South Carolina  wpde.com
  2. Upstate resident is South Carolina's first vaping-related death, health officials say  WYFF4 Greenville
  3. DHEC reports first vaping-related death in S.C.  WIS10
  4. First vape related death reported in South Carolina, DHEC confirms  FOX Carolina
  5. First vaping-related death in South Carolina confirmed  WLTX.com
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Cyber Week sales are still going: iPad Pro, Dell laptops, Nintendo Switch Lite, and more deals – The Verge

  1. Cyber Week sales are still going: iPad Pro, Dell laptops, Nintendo Switch Lite, and more deals  The Verge
  2. Amazon holiday deliveries threatened by Cyber Monday backlog, bad weather  Fox Business
  3. Black Friday May Be Over, But Amazon Is Still Rolling Out Amazing Deals to Prime Members  Yahoo Lifestyle
  4. The Drive-Thru: Cyber Monday, Peloton's bizarre ad, and a 90-year-old Macy's store being taken over by Amazon  Business Insider
  5. Amazon's 12 Days of Deals just started—here are the best deals  USA TODAY
  6. View full coverage on Google News

‘Teen Mom’ Mackenzie McKee’s Mother Hospitalized Again As Cancer Spreads To Liver & Brain

Mackenzie McKee’s mother, Angie, has been hospitalized again, and the outlook in her brave battle against cancer does not look good.

In an emotional Instagram story posted Friday December 6, the Teen Mom OG star’s mother reveals that her cancer has spread, and she is preparing to enter hospice care.

View this post on Instagram

1 Corinthians 15:55 “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” Today was a little rough. Scans showed results that were not good. The cancer has grown in the liver and in the brain. There is also some hemorrhaging in the brain. I will have two more doses of radiation and that will be the last treatment I will be given. I should be able to go home in the next few days. We have decided to have hospice come in when I go home for some extra care. I haven’t been able to open my eyes all day and my head has been hurting badly. Kaylee has had to help me write this post. I’m not sure what to say… other than How God told me early in my diagnoses that He would heal me but I would have a long dark journey to take. I’m starting to think this is what He meant by long dark journey. So please pray for me that I will be strong and be able to stop vomiting. Also please pray that I will be a mighty warrior for Christ. I love every one of you. I thank you so much for your prayers. #alwaysbekind #staystrongmightywarrior #itsonlycancer

A post shared by Angie Douthit (@angiedouthit) on

“Today was a little rough. Scans showed results that were not good,” Angie shared online. “The cancer has grown in the liver and in the brain. There is also some hemorrhaging in the brain. I will have two more doses of radiation and that will be the last treatment I will be given.”

Angie says after that, she expects to be released and sent home.

“We have decided to have hospice come in when I go home for some extra care,” she continued. “I haven’t been able to open my eyes all day and my head has been hurting badly.”

As Radar has reported, Angie was given just months to live in August, after lung cancer spread throughout her body. And in an exclusive interview with Radar, Mackenzie revealed her mother had five inoperable masses on her brain and a 7cm mass on her lung.

The diagnosis came as a shock to the family, as Angie is an avid runner and maintained a healthy lifestyle.

But on Thursday, December 5, she was rushed back to the hospital.

View this post on Instagram

James 1:2-4 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” Today was an interesting day. I woke up to get ready for work but I couldn’t really walk and I found myself throwing up. So I took a bath, layed back down, and called my boss to tell them I’d be late. The next thing I know I’m waking up trying to find my phone. I called my Dr who said to get to ER quickly. I called Brad to come and get me, since I couldn’t walk and I saw 2 or 3 of everything. The Dr. ran several tests and they are concerned about my liver, gall bladder, hip bone, and brain. They gave me some medicine and are keeping me overnight. But it’s ok. God already knew it was going to happen and He already knew that I was going to desperately need Him today. I’ve had to close my eyes all day because everything was double and wavy. By keeping my eyes closed I spent the day praying and listening. Whatever you are going through today, try your best to listen to God. Give Him all your fears, all your sicknesses, and all your worries. Let your trials produce perseverance in you and make you complete. #alwaysbekind #staystrongmightywarrior #itsonlycancer

A post shared by Angie Douthit (@angiedouthit) on

“Today was an interesting day,” Angie shared on Instagram. “I woke up to get ready for work but I couldn’t really walk and I found myself throwing up. So I took a bath, layed back down, and called my boss to tell them I’d be late.”

“The next thing I know I’m waking up trying to find my phone. I called my Dr who said to get to ER quickly. I called Brad to come and get me, since I couldn’t walk and I saw 2 or 3 of everything. The Dr. ran several tests and they are concerned about my liver, gall bladder, hip bone, and brain. They gave me some medicine and are keeping me overnight,” she continued.

In her most recent update, the brave fighter asked for prayers, as she seemingly comes to terms with the inevitable.

“Kaylee has had to help me write this post. I’m not sure what to say… other than How God told me early in my diagnoses that He would heal me but I would have a long dark journey to take,” she stated. “I’m starting to think this is what He meant by long dark journey.”

Listen on Google Play Music

The post ‘Teen Mom’ Mackenzie McKee’s Mother Hospitalized Again As Cancer Spreads To Liver & Brain appeared first on RadarOnline.

‘Teen Mom’ Mackenzie McKee’s Mother Hospitalized Again As Cancer Spreads To Liver & Brain

Mackenzie McKee’s mother, Angie, has been hospitalized again, and the outlook in her brave battle against cancer does not look good.

In an emotional Instagram story posted Friday December 6, the Teen Mom OG star’s mother reveals that her cancer has spread, and she is preparing to enter hospice care.

View this post on Instagram

1 Corinthians 15:55 “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” Today was a little rough. Scans showed results that were not good. The cancer has grown in the liver and in the brain. There is also some hemorrhaging in the brain. I will have two more doses of radiation and that will be the last treatment I will be given. I should be able to go home in the next few days. We have decided to have hospice come in when I go home for some extra care. I haven’t been able to open my eyes all day and my head has been hurting badly. Kaylee has had to help me write this post. I’m not sure what to say… other than How God told me early in my diagnoses that He would heal me but I would have a long dark journey to take. I’m starting to think this is what He meant by long dark journey. So please pray for me that I will be strong and be able to stop vomiting. Also please pray that I will be a mighty warrior for Christ. I love every one of you. I thank you so much for your prayers. #alwaysbekind #staystrongmightywarrior #itsonlycancer

A post shared by Angie Douthit (@angiedouthit) on

“Today was a little rough. Scans showed results that were not good,” Angie shared online. “The cancer has grown in the liver and in the brain. There is also some hemorrhaging in the brain. I will have two more doses of radiation and that will be the last treatment I will be given.”

Angie says after that, she expects to be released and sent home.

“We have decided to have hospice come in when I go home for some extra care,” she continued. “I haven’t been able to open my eyes all day and my head has been hurting badly.”

As Radar has reported, Angie was given just months to live in August, after lung cancer spread throughout her body. And in an exclusive interview with Radar, Mackenzie revealed her mother had five inoperable masses on her brain and a 7cm mass on her lung.

The diagnosis came as a shock to the family, as Angie is an avid runner and maintained a healthy lifestyle.

But on Thursday, December 5, she was rushed back to the hospital.

View this post on Instagram

James 1:2-4 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” Today was an interesting day. I woke up to get ready for work but I couldn’t really walk and I found myself throwing up. So I took a bath, layed back down, and called my boss to tell them I’d be late. The next thing I know I’m waking up trying to find my phone. I called my Dr who said to get to ER quickly. I called Brad to come and get me, since I couldn’t walk and I saw 2 or 3 of everything. The Dr. ran several tests and they are concerned about my liver, gall bladder, hip bone, and brain. They gave me some medicine and are keeping me overnight. But it’s ok. God already knew it was going to happen and He already knew that I was going to desperately need Him today. I’ve had to close my eyes all day because everything was double and wavy. By keeping my eyes closed I spent the day praying and listening. Whatever you are going through today, try your best to listen to God. Give Him all your fears, all your sicknesses, and all your worries. Let your trials produce perseverance in you and make you complete. #alwaysbekind #staystrongmightywarrior #itsonlycancer

A post shared by Angie Douthit (@angiedouthit) on

“Today was an interesting day,” Angie shared on Instagram. “I woke up to get ready for work but I couldn’t really walk and I found myself throwing up. So I took a bath, layed back down, and called my boss to tell them I’d be late.”

“The next thing I know I’m waking up trying to find my phone. I called my Dr who said to get to ER quickly. I called Brad to come and get me, since I couldn’t walk and I saw 2 or 3 of everything. The Dr. ran several tests and they are concerned about my liver, gall bladder, hip bone, and brain. They gave me some medicine and are keeping me overnight,” she continued.

In her most recent update, the brave fighter asked for prayers, as she seemingly comes to terms with the inevitable.

“Kaylee has had to help me write this post. I’m not sure what to say… other than How God told me early in my diagnoses that He would heal me but I would have a long dark journey to take,” she stated. “I’m starting to think this is what He meant by long dark journey.”

Listen on Google Play Music

The post ‘Teen Mom’ Mackenzie McKee’s Mother Hospitalized Again As Cancer Spreads To Liver & Brain appeared first on RadarOnline.

Iron Bowl Review: Too Much Magic

Will the 2020s be online advertising’s holistic decade?

With less than two months left in the decade, advertising is again entering a new phase of rapid expansion with customer experience front and center.

The explosion of data and identity management, combined with technical advancements in real-time signal detection and machine learning, present new opportunities to respond to consumers, but mastering this ability enables marketers to create “magic moments” — instances of hyper-relevant content, delivered at the perfect time and place. 

We’ll see evolutions on the back end in terms of delivery and measurement — as well as on the consumer-facing end — through new creative deployments that enhance the brick-and-mortar shopping trip. Marketers will be held to a higher standard, both by clients demanding world-class performance and proof, as well as consumers who want relevancy, helpfulness and privacy from their brand relationships. 

Achieving this balance won’t be an easy task, but the most progressive marketers will succeed in driving this industry toward a more customer-centric future because they took steps to evolve before it was too late. With that in mind, here are five ways we expect advertising to become more holistic in the 2020s: 

Smart data will take priority over big data

Most marketers have heard the adage, “garbage in, garbage out.” For too long, the industry relied on sheer quantity of data with no quality metrics for making key audience assumptions. This mentality has had a detrimental effect on our industry, creating an ecosystem where people simply hate ads and brands focus on viewability over ROI.

To truly understand our audiences, we must first turn data from multi-channel interactions into smart, actionable insights. This involves not only understanding who the customer is, but what motivates them. 

Progressive marketers will continue to invest heavily in identity graphs to tie critical data and behaviors to individual profiles across channels. Using data science and machine learning, marketers will then be able to advance their knowledge about consumers to new levels, employing new messaging tactics based not only on value, but also on what inspires action. Key nuances, like distinguishing a deal-seeker from a value-seeker, will lead to more engaging personalized experiences and ultimately better ROI for advertisers.

We’ll see a flurry of investment in real-time engagement

We live in a world where our technology predicts where we are going, what we are seeking and how long it will take to get there by recognizing our patterns and everyday behaviors. The benefits in terms of convenience and knowledge are addictive. Look no further than email, social and Alexa to see how real-time awareness and time savings from these interactions impact our everyday lives.  

For marketers, capturing this lightning in a bottle has always been elusive — until now. The rise of real-time advertising, customer data platforms (CDPs), data science and machine learning have created the ability to detect purchases as well as online and real world location signals in real-time. This enables marketers to not only predict the next shopping trip, but what a consumer is likely to buy, when it matters most.

These sense-and-respond capabilities will enable progressive marketers to create experiences of enormous value at the moments that matter, such as triggering an offer of relevance upon entering a store or delivering a tailored experience at a specific time and location. The new decade will bring about massive investments into these technologies given their immediate ability to influence consumers during the actual purchase process. We’ll see budgets being specifically carved out to support real-time advertising and technologies as marketers optimize and convert users with greater effectiveness.  

For consumers, it means that the in-store experience will continue to become more interactive, with mobile devices as the connecting point between e-commerce and brick and mortar. Brands that thrive in this environment will win by delivering meaningful creative that connects both online and offline worlds in a helpful and relevant way.

Cutting-edge tech will create new ad experiences

Kailyn Lowry: Leah Messer Has Been Brainwashed By a Murderous Cult!

A few weeks ago, we reported on the rumor that Leah Messer has joined a cult.

Now, that may sound like an outlandish sentence, but it's important to bear in mind that not all cults involve goat sacrifices and ritualistic drug trips.

Some of them are disguised as self-help groups or therapy programs, and many fans of Leah's were concerned that she'd fallen prey to just such an organization.

Leah has pushed back against claims that she's keeping company with a dangerous crowd, but now, it seems that her Teen Mom 2 co-star and BFF Kailyn Lowry is desperate to rescue her friend from this sketchy collective.

Take a look:

 

1. Troubling Signs

Kail and leah
Recent social media posts from Leah Messer have led fans to worry that the Teen Mom 2 star has fallen victim to a cult. And now, it looks as though Kailyn Lowry shares those concerns.

2. Drinking the Kool-Aid

Leah messer on the phone
According to an October report from Radar Online, the West Virginia native has joined Mastery in Transformational Training, an organization that's allegedly just as culty as it sounds.

3. Beam Her Up

Leah messer picture
Fans were reluctant to believe the news at first, as Leah is commonly regarded as one of the more down-to-earth members of the Teen Mom franchise.

4. Fellow Cultists

Leah cult 1
Back on October 1, Leah posted this picture of herself with a bunch of randos. The tweet raised questions with fans because seriously ... who TF are these people?

5. Cult Culture

Leah messer on mtv picture
And then there was the caption: “A powerful, strong, trusting force we are! I love each and every single one of you!!" Messer wrote under the pic. "You can count on my word!"

6. ALL-CAPS EXCITEMENT!

Leah messer is blonde
"Each one of you have changed my life and we will forever be connected!!," she went on. "I AM A POWERFUL, CONNECTED, INSPIRATIONAL LEADER! I LOVE ALL OF YOU!” Needless to say, she's really into this.
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Khloe and Kim Gang Up on Kourtney. And It Gets Ugly.

The clash of the Kardashians will continue this coming Sunday night.

In a sneak peek at the next new episodes of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Khloe and Kim arrived at a private home, with a camera crew obviously in tow because, you know... that's the entire point of a reality series.

Except Kourtney bristles at what she deems an invasion of privacy, getting into it with her sisters over her preferences to NOT publicize every aspect of  her life.

"I'm here for a meeting! Do you wanna come inside? I'm not literally dating anybody," Kourtney tells her curious siblings, who she thinks have ambushed her in an attempt to expose some new romance on the show.

"But we don't know, because we don't know anything about you," Khloe fires back in a hilariously scripted and clearly very fake fight.

While she wasn't with a man at the time this scene was filmed, Kourtney was pretending to be irate that she could have been -- and how dare her loved ones make this known to the world?!?

"What if I actually was, then what?" Kourtney asks. "Like you'd bring the cameras here? It's so disrespectful."

"If I have boundaries, respect them," Kourtney added, as Kim rolls her eyes while saying:

"You and your boundaries."

After Kourtney  takes a dig at Khloe by stating how  she "likes to show every single thing" about her life, Truth's mother says she only does it because "it's our job."

This seems like a fair point.

However, Kourtney disagrees.

"It's not. There's a fine line," she replies.

In a subsequent confessional, Kim stands by Khloe, explaining how of course it's their job to be candid and adding that Kourtney "hasn't really been open about her personal life on camera" for a few years now.

"All the days Kourtney isn't filming, Khloe and I are picking up the slack and having to share more. If we're not sharing our lives, what is the show?" she  asks.

This is, even by very low Kardashian standards, maybe the dumbest argument in show history.

Khloe ended up accusing her older sister of "coasting" through the program, asking Kourtney if she thinks it's "fair" she's not as open as the rest of her relatives.

"I said I would not share my relationships, that's it," Kourtney responds. "I shared my breakdown crying about having anxiety, I share other things. I'm not like, turn the cameras off!"

She will be soon, though.

According to multiple sources, Kourtney may soon leave Keeping Up with the Kardashians.

She remains a cast member for now, though. 

And you can see her in action via the stupid clip featured here!

Khloe and kim kardashian gang up on kourtney and it gets persona

Grant Morrison Roasts the Current State Of DC Comics – as Well as Bendis, King, Snyder, Azzarello and Himself in Green Lantern: Blackstars

The Sound Of A Screw Falling Through A Jet Engine

Guy Shares Experiences From His First Five Days Working At Target

funny tumblr stories about first days working at target, shopping, shoppers, working retail, customer service.

We all know working in retail can be an absolute hell, but this account of a dude's first five days at Target proves there actually are decent days working in customer service. In just five days of tending to paying customers, he met a lot of...active...older people, some seriously funny weirdos, and a whole lot of cute kids. It may not be a gripping account, but it certainly is an entertaining and heartwarming one. 

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CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS “Extended Trailer” Reveals Another Superman And More Amazing Team-Ups

The latest trailer for Crisis on Infinite Earths reveals a world where the Man of Steel fell to Lex Luthor along with plenty of other must-see new details and team-ups in what looks set to be a true epic!

The Aeronauts and Finding Adventure in the Sky

We speak with director Tom Harper about The Aeronauts and a time when hot air balloons in the sky were an escape into the unknown.

Pop quiz: what is the first thing that enters your mind when you think about mankind's first venture into the skies? The smart money is on you thinking about the Wright Brothers. Maybe there is a long shot on a few of you sickos went straight to the Hindenburg. Before all of them though, we first started exploring the skies in balloons.

In his new film The Aeronauts, writer-director Tom Harper brings to light the early perils and wonder of what it was like to float up into the unknown, when one could only imagine seeing anything above the clouds. Along with his co-writer, Jack Thorne, and stars Felicity Jones and Eddie Redmayne, Harper set out to bring along his audience into a vision of the heavens that even now, with all our technology, is sometimes just as mysterious as it was 150 years ago.

Was this the type of project where you just had an interest in the subject before hand? 

No, I had read Falling Upward and was inspired by the extraordinary lengths people went to expand on the known world, and who had that thirst for adventure. Something about the pursuit of flight that just hooked me, I suppose. Just the thought of that time, when we didn’t know what was above us; you didn’t know if you could just keep flying, if you would just keep going and hit the moon, or beyond. Maybe you would encounter something else or whether it would get hotter… it’s amazing that, relatively, it was a short time ago when we had no idea what was in the sky above us.

There is also that idea here though, of the infancy of meteorology.

Absolutely, again, 170 or so years ago, it was considered fortune telling. There was an MP that stood up in the houses of parliament and said, “In the future, we may be able to predict the weather 24 hours in advance,” and they were laughed down and kicked out of parliament for it, because it sounded like nonsense. It’s amazing, it makes you think that 150 years from now… I mean, look what had happened in just the last 50 years compared to the last 150. Where will we be 100 years from now, and what previous things that we thought were unimaginable--I don’t know, like, time travel. [Laughter] It might genuinely be something like that. 

So when approaching this idea, where did that cross section sit for you between telling this real historical story and making a kind of period action-thriller?

What I quickly realized is there was no one story that had enough in one flight to get what I wanted. I was very drawn to do it all as one flight, sort of a rollercoaster adventure into the skies. I loved the idea of a sort-of action period piece, something you don’t get very often. I liked the idea of doing it in real-time as well. If we were going to do that, there was no one flight that was going to give us everything that we wanted, so we were needing an amalgam of many stories.

What I was looking for was an essence of adventure, of wonder... The vast majority of things that did happen in the flight, did happen to people, just not all at the same time. It’s kind of a greatest hits of the things that happened in balloon flight throughout the century.

What I really appreciate about the film is that you don’t take lots of time to explain every little detail, you just show it. Did you have to balance out how much you delved into?

In the end, it is a counterbalance. It happens in every film. Sometimes you get it right, and sometimes you get it wrong. For example, something that I actually think we got wrong in there, is the gloves. We’ve had a number of audience members ask me, “Why didn’t they take gloves?” Of course, she does take gloves, and she wears gloves--they both wear gloves, and hats, but they lose them in the storm.

There was a line in [Jack Thorne’s] script that said this, and we see a close up of the gloves flying off. But I was like, “Ah, we don’t need to show a close-up of that, people will know,” and actually it’s not clear enough and people do struggle with that, and I do wish I had made it clearer.

So for the record, the gloves are there. You don’t want to over explain things, and in general, audiences are far smarter--you don’t need to explain things, but you need to give them enough that they don’t feel like they’re missing something or feel that the characters are missing something. For the most part, in any film, at any time, it’s always about balance and I think for the most part, we got the balance right in this. I mean, there is a difference between hot air balloons and gas balloons, but I don’t want to spend five minutes boring people with that information.

read more: Mark Ruffalo and the Dangers of Capitalism in Dark Waters

Speaking about Jack, what is it about your working relationship with him that keeps you two collaborating together?

Yeah, this is our fifth film together. I’d say trust and inspiration. He’s a massively inspiring person, and he accesses a kind of truth within humans in a way that is quite extraordinary. It doesn’t matter if it is period or present day, he just has a way of getting to a truth that is special. We’ve become friends, we trust each other with each other’s sections. I trust him with the script, he trusts me with his script.

We can feed in, inspire, provoke, and dare each other to do better work. One of the great pleasures of filmmaking is that collaboration of inspiring minds. Whether it’s cast members, crew members, writers, or producers. That’s when things are at their best, and it is an incredibly rewarding process.

Well then I imagine that is what also makes it great to have two leads who have worked closely together before.

Them having a creative relationship before where they had built up a relationship of trust--they have great chemistry and it gave us a real headstart on things. They are very generous, and folded me into that relationship. We had a really exciting time together, and they push each other. They’ll do a scene a few times and then they’ll throw each other curveballs, they’ll dare each other to take those risks. Even off-camera, they may make it a little personal and push. They’re very exciting to be around.

Of course I never want to take anything away from them or others, but it must be a true thrill to have Tom Courtenay on your project.

I mean, it’s Tom. He’s one of those wonderful, beautiful actors. He’s just such a pleasure to work with and he’s just amazing.

I can never get over how he can sound normal, but somewhere in his throat, you can tell his heart is breaking.

Yeah, it’s magical, it really is. That’s one of the nicest things about being a director. You’re there when the magic happens and you feel in some way connected and that’s one of the beautiful things about it.

What about the technical side of the film. How do you work on getting those visuals as if you’re 3,000 feet in the air?

We were 3,000 feet in the air, filming in a helicopter. That’s where we started; how much of this can we shoot for real? One of our first days of filming was with Felicity in the basket, 3,000 feet above British countryside, me in the helicopter. We’d rehearse the scene, then we’d do it. She was there, climbing out of the basket, into the hoop… we did a chunk of it for real. What that meant is, when we did do the stuff in the studio, we were able to draw from that experience. We flew in the balloons, a lot. Some of it for filming, some of it for rehearsals, some of it with all of our crew in the balloons, so they could experience what it was like.

I really wanted us to make a film that made the audience feel like they came as close as possible to what it was like for those characters to fly. Part of that was doing it for real, part of that was giving the actors the experiences they needed to draw from. Felicity went on a bunch of pilot training flights. Eddie and I went to a military defense airbase and were put in a decompression chamber to simulate what it would be like at 30,000 feet, starved of oxygen. We even chilled the studio to just below freezing so we create the temperatures of what it was like. Felicity and Eddie would actually thrust their hands into ice buckets. It was about using whatever tools we could to recreate it, so it would feel as real as possible.

That’s for the actors, but one a visual level, you can basically do anything with visual effects these days. But that doesn’t mean it looks real or feels real. What we ended up doing was, yes, working very hard to make it real. To go around the world and film cloud scapes from South Africa to New Orleans, and in the UK.

If you put that together and it’s perfect, it actually doesn’t feel real. Because if you are doing it for real, it won’t be perfect. We looked at a lot of parachute jumpers, and people who film form balloons, and our own footage from filming in balloons; and the things that make it real, are the imperfections. The camera jumps, the flares, the inability to pull focus. We ended up taking a lot of those imperfections and putting them into the film, which I think makes it feel all the more real.

read more: Why Rian Johnson Won't Leave the Knives Out Universe

What about stress testing the equipment, as well? Were you able to see how they were affected by the jump to 30,000 feet as opposed to 3,000?

Yes, we did all sorts of things. We did quite a lot of flying and testing out different lenses, and how it reacts in the basket. I mean, you can only go so high. We could only go about 22,000 feet in the helicopter anyway, and that’s really pushing it. So, 36,000 feet is really fucking high [Laughter]. There is a large element of this is is just staring out of airplane windows. I took a lot of pictures out of airplane windows.

I love how the film opens, almost as if you didn’t know what was going on; you’d think the entertainment of the times was to watch people launch off in a balloon. But much like today, they’re selling an image to get backers for their work.

Yeah, I mean, it was an expensive endeavor at the time. You either had to be rich or have access to a private financier. I mean, Ameila Wren [Jones] comes from a wealthy family, but she was insistent on making her own money and not asking for that; so you have to sell tickets, you have to put on a show, you have to find backers. The whole reason they were able to go up in the first place is because she puts on a show for them. That was the reality of the time.

I have to say through all of the skyscapes and landscapes, that factory where they are building their balloon was one of the most spectacular visuals. Was that a full set?

That’s an actual location. That’s Chatham Docks, it’s a ship building yard, essentially. So it was all real and there was this one lithograph we discovered an old balloon factory, and it was not unlike it, actually. It had the balloons half-made, hanging all around, and we created that as best we could and there was luckily this location that we found that was quite extraordinary.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones in The Aeronauts
Interview Matthew Schuchman
Dec 6, 2019

Trump shares Saudi response to Pensacola shooting – Fox News

  1. Trump shares Saudi response to Pensacola shooting  Fox News
  2. Trump speaks with Saudi king after Pensacola shooting | TheHill  The Hill
  3. Saudi Arabia 'greatly angered' by Pensacola Navy base shooting, Trump says  USA TODAY
  4. Trump passes along Saudi king's 'sympathies' after Saudi national kills 3 at naval base  POLITICO
  5. Watch: Trump holds meeting on small business amid Pensacola shooting  NBC News
  6. View full coverage on Google News

New York Knicks fire David Fizdale and Keith Smart, promote Mike Miller to interim head coach, per report – CBS Sports

  1. New York Knicks fire David Fizdale and Keith Smart, promote Mike Miller to interim head coach, per report  CBS Sports
  2. David Fizdale fired by Knicks in 'sickening' ending  New York Post
  3. The Knicks Have Reportedly Fired David Fizdale, but That Won’t Solve Anything  The Ringer
  4. It Doesn't Matter Who Takes Over For David Fizdale Until Dolan Is Gone! | Tiki + Tierney  CBS Sports
  5. Everyone in Knicks organization is to blame for this disaster  New York Post
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Gamma-ray laser moves a step closer to reality – Phys.org

Gamma-ray laser moves a step closer to reality  Phys.org

Several killed in central Baghdad as assailants fire live rounds – Al Jazeera English

  1. Several killed in central Baghdad as assailants fire live rounds  Al Jazeera English
  2. Iraqi Families Search for Protesters Left Missing in Crackdown  The Wall Street Journal
  3. 15 Killed in Baghdad Square as Assailants Fire Live Rounds  TIME
  4. Washington blacklists Iran-backed Iraqi militia leaders over protests  Reuters
  5. Trump administration sanctions Iran-backed militia leaders  CBS News
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Star Wars: The Mandalorian Episode 5 Review – The Gunslinger

Ming-Na Wen shines in an overall bland episode of Star Wars: The Mandalorian. Here is our review of "The Gunslinger"...

This Star Wars: The Mandalorian review contains spoilers. 

Star Wars: The Mandalorian Episode 5

Throughout The Mandalorian, I’ve been wrestling with the idea of what a Star Wars TV show should do. The show is well-made, competent in its storytelling—the dialogue energetic, the side characters entertaining. It also, particularly in episode 5, seems to veer away from deeper interpretation. In Star Wars tie-in fashion, this is an adventure story and no more. Ming-Na Wen arrives as a masked bounty hunter who, like Pedro Pascal, does some of her best work through her body language, but director and writer Dave Filoni doesn’t have the ability the show’s other directors do to draw emotion out of a scene, to linger. Instead, "The Gunslinger" is a twisty, turning adventure with some memorable side characters—exactly what one might want out of Star Wars, but not with a lot to say. 

After visiting a long stretch of planets which look like Tatooine, we’re truly back on the iconic desert world now. It’s an old joke or adage or complaint that, for all the talk that Tatooine is supposed to be a backwater planet, everyone important ends up there sooner or later. This Tatooine looks thinner than its big screen counterpart, Mos Eisley noticeably much emptier than in A New Hope. Filoni is not nearly as interested in convincing desert landscapes or color palettes as the rest of the filmmakers have been, either. Some night scenes are remarkable for being mostly understandable, not muddled but lit in convincing and clarifying blues.

While other episodes teased it, this one is chock full of direct references to A New Hope, with the classic cantina intact and nearly empty. While there, Mando meets Toro Calican (Jake Cannavale), a rogue without a heart of gold. He’s trying to join the Bounty Hunters’ Guild, and will give the money from the capture of an infamous assassin to Mando if he helps him do it. 

Stream Star Wars shows with a FREE TRIAL of Disney+, right here!

Mando leaves the Child with spaceport keeper and mechanic Peli Motto (Amy Sedaris), a shouty, grimy character who brings a lot of energy to reacting to Baby Yoda while standing right on the edge of cliche mom territory. This is exactly the sort of character who tends not to be written for women in Star Wars; funny but not slapstick, a salt-of-the-earth person who has wrinkles and frizzy hair and gets to yell “carbon scoring!” like she’s been doing it her whole life. She’s delightful. Separating Baby Yoda from the Mando is, at least, different: it would have been hard to understand why the Mando would bring the Child with him to dangerous places now, even if the show didn’t suffer from that lapse in logic before. 

The wanted assassin is Wen, who exudes an incredible sense of alertness, not nervous watchfulness but a careful, all-eyes competence. She evokes magical 360 degree vision even though she is wearing a helmet with what looks like very restrictive effects on her peripheral vision. She has a sniper rifle which can only be evaded using blinding light. Here, too, is a true rogue; her dialogue allows her to be cold and warm in turn, and, although there isn’t much depth to this character, she does keep me guessing as to what she’ll do next.

The lack of backstory surprised me; every other element of the show has been so tightly connected to Mando’s personal journey that to include a young mentee and a heartless assassin seems to demand the episode say something about Mando’s increasing loyalty to the Child, or his violent past, or his ideas about child-rearing. It doesn’t, and instead we’re treated to forgettable dialogue and low-budget but snappy hand-to-hand combat. From the space fight in the opening scene, I felt like the episode was bloodless, and that continues throughout.

Read More: The Mandalorian Episode 5 Ending Explained 

So if we’re measuring by the rubric of meaning, episode 5 doesn’t hit the highs of “The Sin” or last week’s “Sanctuary.” But I did like it: the masked assassin Fennec Shand has powerful screen presence for such a brief appearances; Mando’s interactions with the locals all feature a surprising amount of humor. (This is especially true when he notices Baby Yoda missing, a low-stakes version of all the near-losses that have come before. Peli Motto cooing over the baby and playing with its ears is the entire internet.)

The music is, as always, good. Imagery of Mando and Toro speeding across the Dune Sea is accompanied by deep strings with a heroic rhythm, then shifts to a very classic Star Wars melody. 

I also enjoyed Mando’s brief encounter with Tusken Raiders, with a nice but extremely brief acknowledgement of the way the species has been often portrayed without sympathy in the past: “Tuskens think they’re the locals. Everyone else is just trespassing,” Mando says. Again, it’s a nice sentiment, but doesn’t connect to the themes of the episode as a whole.

Another evocation of classic Star Wars didn’t work for me at all: a fade-in transition doesn’t have the charm of the classic films, it just looks like a messy, meme-able Photoshop in the year 2019. (Of course, we wouldn’t have Photoshop without Star Wars in the first place.) The last full scene of the episode fizzles rather than delighting, yet another twist or two piling on in very The Clone Wars fashion.

If what The Mandalorian is aiming to do is show new characters with a classic feel, make audiences laugh with delight at Baby Yoda, and provide a half hour of escapism, “The Gunslinger” succeeds. But the show is at its best when it has a core of emotional continuity, something this episode lacks. Toro Calican is remarkably disconnected from the Mandalorian he’s supposed to be working with, neither charming nor sinister enough to elevate their interactions. If we measure The Mandalorian against itself, “The Gunslinger” falls somewhere in the middle.

Listen to the latest Star Wars Blaster Canon podcast:

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Megan Crouse writes about Star Wars and pop culture for StarWars.com, Star Wars Insider, and Den of Geek. Read more of her work here. Find her on Twitter @blogfullofwords.

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3.5/5
Review Megan Crouse
Dec 6, 2019
Star Wars: The Mandalorian Episode 5 Review

Does the stock market even need a U.S.-China trade deal with the jobs report this hot? – MarketWatch

  1. Does the stock market even need a U.S.-China trade deal with the jobs report this hot?  MarketWatch
  2. Kudlow says a trade deal is close, but Trump is prepared to 'walk away' if some conditions not met  CNBC
  3. Trump's tricky decision: Hit Chinese goods with new tariffs or hold off  CNBC
  4. Trump's tariffs are spooking markets while the economy slows | TheHill  The Hill
  5. Why US consumers remain the bright spot in a troubled global economy  South China Morning Post
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US employers added 266000 jobs in November – CNN

  1. US employers added 266000 jobs in November  CNN
  2. Here's where the jobs are — in one chart  CNBC
  3. Explosive Jobs Report Sends Team Trump to Twitter to Gloat About Supercharged Economy  Independent Journal Review
  4. Jobs report delivers 'stellar' news -- so why do Democrats want to impeach Trump?  New York Post
  5. Jobs growth soars in November as payrolls surge by 266,000  CNBC
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It Is Championship Week

Facebook’s plan to label state media is taking longer than expected

‘Jersey Shore’ Star Angelina Pivarnick & Husband Trapped In Money Woes 3 Weeks After Wedding

‘Jersey Shore’ Star Angelina Pivarnick & Husband Trapped In Money Woes 3 Weeks After Wedding

Donny Cates Spoils Thor Run on Twitter: It Will Not Feature Knull

Global entertainment superstar and fashion icon Donny Cates has expanded his sphere of influence, moving beyond his kingdom of Twitter to expand to the vast, unconquered territory of Reddit. The Bad Boy of comics took to Twitter to respond to a screencap complaining about Cates’ upcoming and highly anticipated Thor run with artist Nic Klein and to attack Cates’ religion of Satanism.

After learning that the screencap came from Reddit, Cates decided to spoil his Thor run by revealing that Knull would not, in fact, feature in it, and that in fact it won’t be tied to Cates’ Venom run at all!

Cates asked hardcore fans, a group that calls themselves the Catesbronies, to screencap his tweet and post it on Reddit on his behalf so that all who frequent the site know that Knull will not be in Thor and Thor will not be tied in with Venom.

However, Cates did leave open the possibility that his Venom run will be tied to his Thor run.

But in case anyone on Twitter is worried that Cates’ newfound interest in Reddit posts will deflect attention away from Twitter, fear not. Cates remains committed to feuding on the premiere social media site.

And it’s a good thing too, for Twitter’s sake. Cates’ Twitter is such an attraction, it even caused Matthew Rosenberg, who quit the social media service back in January, to return to offer him reassurance.

Bleeding Cool will continue to monitor Cates’ Twitter account for clickbait article material and are very grateful he has decided to remain committed to producing it for us. Be sure to bookmark Bleeding Cool’s all Donny Cates drama all the time hub, Donny Cates Equals Clicks, for more exciting content like this.

Bad Boy of Comics Donny Cates Reveals Marvel Has Big Plans for Bats the Ghost Dog

The post Donny Cates Spoils Thor Run on Twitter: It Will Not Feature Knull appeared first on Bleeding Cool News And Rumors.

Trump asks Supreme Court to block House subpoenas to banks for financial documents – CNN

  1. Trump asks Supreme Court to block House subpoenas to banks for financial documents  CNN
  2. Trump brings a third case over his financial records to the Supreme Court  CNBC
  3. Trump asks Supreme Court to stop banks from disclosing his financial data  Reuters
  4. Trump asks Supreme Court to block House subpoenas to Deutsche Bank, Capital One for financial records  NBCNews.com
  5. Our Bipartisan Obsession with President Trump  National Review
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Electronic map reveals ‘rules of the road’ in superconductor

Using a clever technique that causes unruly crystals of iron selenide to snap into alignment, physicists have drawn a road map that reveals the quantum ''rules of the road'' that electrons must follow in the enigmatic superconductor.

Raising VC in Silicon Valley as a female POC

McKinsey: Buttigieg Calls On Company To Release Its Client List – NPR

  1. McKinsey: Buttigieg Calls On Company To Release Its Client List  NPR
  2. Buttigieg asks consulting firm to release his past client list | TheHill  The Hill
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Khloe Kardashian to Jordyn Woods: Whoops, Sorry I Ruined Your Life!

This week, Khloe Kardashian went on a tear, telling her fans that she'll forgive Tristan Thompson if she likes, and they should butt out of it.

Now, Khloe has extended an olive branch towards Jordyn Woods, too. But is it sincere? After everything, will Jordyn accept it?

Khloe Kardashian Poses in Florida

After Keeping Up With The Kardashians fans saw Khloe get along so shockingly well with her cheating baby daddy, Khloe addressed the kontroversy.

"I’m seeing a lot of commentary about last week’s episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians," Khloe's post begins.

"As much as I hate speaking on all of this," she writes, "because I’m sure everybody is over it, as am I."

Khloe explains: "but I’m frustrated that people try to create something that’s not really there."

Khloe Kardashian at the PCAs

"I don’t hold any negative or hateful feelings towards ANYONE!" Khloe insists. "I mean that. Life is short!"

"We are all humans trying to figure out this thing called life," she correctly acknowledges.

Khloe asks: "Who am I to condemn anyone else?"

"Yes, I’m allowed to feel hurt and pain," she affirms. "It would be unnatural for me to pretend as if I don’t."

Khloe Kardashian: Guess What? I Am.

"Personally, I don’t want to be carrying around a hateful heart," Khloe expresses.

"I crave peace in my life," she points out. "Me holding onto hate is only going to hurt me in the end."

"I have chosen to NOT pollute my heart and my energy by holding onto anything negative," Khloe announces.

"I am allowed to forgive," she affirms. "Forgiveness is a strength and not a weakness."

Khloe Kardashian on KUWTK Season 17

"I am allowed to forgive people but still not accept their behaviors," Khloe writes. "I’m also allowed to protect my space."

"I am allowed to choose who I want in my life and who I do not," she correctly insists.

Khloe adds: "I’m also allowed to wish people well and sincerely mean it."

"Doesn’t mean I have to be their best friend," she clarifies.

Keeks!

"I want nothing but beautiful blessings for EVERYBODY that has ever been in my life," Khloe proclaims.

She writes that she wants that "regardless of what they have done or not done to me."

"I want people to be kinder in this world," Khloe urges. "We are all here to live and experience life."

"Therefore we may make mistakes along the way," she reasons. "And if we are lucky, we will grow from every mistake we make."

Khloe Kardashian’s Anna Nicole Smith Look

"If we are blessed enough," Khloe continues, "we get to grow to be incredibly kind and beautiful people."

"I wish that for everybody in the world," she expresses.

"I want peace and happiness for ALL!" Khloe writes, switching to religious language to say: "I’ve Given it to God."

"I have been working on me from the inside out," she shares. "I crave peace and happiness in this new year and forever after."

Khloe Kardashian Praises Her Sister

"The reason why I decided to post my previous post is because I’m seeing a lot of back-and-forth," Khloe explains.

She continues: "with people asking, ‘why don’t I keep that same energy with Jordyn?’ That message is for Jordyn."

"It’s for anyone else who has ever hurt me," Khloe clarifies.

"For some reason," she notes, "people want to assume that I’m talking only about Tristan."

On Season 17

"This message applies to ALL parties involved in situations that have ever hurt me," Khloe 

"Men, friends, family, work associates… anyone who played a role in my pain."

"I have moved on, found forgiveness, and wish you only happiness and joy!"

"My life won’t be consumed with hate. I’ve chosen to occupy my life with positivity."

Khloe Kardashian on the Finale

"Every day I choose to find the good in my day," Khloe tells her fans and followers.

'To choose this daily doesn’t mean I don’t have bad days," she shares, "but my good days are so much better than my bad ones."

"We are all human and make mistakes myself included," Khloe acknowledges.

'Hate is heavy," she laments, "and I am tired of carrying all of that weight around."

Jordyn Woods on Insta

Jordyn Woods seemingly responded to this olive branch in her Instagram Stories.

"Someone somewhere is still discussing the old you because they don't have access to the new you," the text reads.

Fans believed that she was perhaps clapping back at Khloe for bringing her up and suggesting that she needs forgiveness.

But Jordyn explains that it's simply not the case.

Jordyn Woods Photo

"Not every quote that is posted is a sub or a 'clap back' and not everything posted is directed towards one person in general," Jordyn tweets.

She continues: "I deal with a lot of different s--t daily. It's all love."

"Only positive vibrations," Jordyn's tweet concludes.

Khloe's post may have been much longer, but it looks like both of these women are on the same page.

Best Gifts Under $25 2019

From party and tabletop games to gaming gift cards, novels and comics to toys and other items, these are the best gifts under $25 for 2019.

College Football Power Rankings and Playoff Odds: Final Playoff Spot Up For Grabs – Scout

College Football Power Rankings and Playoff Odds: Final Playoff Spot Up For Grabs  Scout

The Fourth Wall Podcast: The Kick-Ass Music of Harley Quinn

The adult-themed animated series, Harley Quinn, requires a special musical touch, which composer Jefferson Friedman handles deftly.

Harley Quinn on DC Universe is not your typical comics-based animated series. With its mature humor befitting the irreverent, hammer-wielding villain, the series is carving out its own niche that has elevated the status of this already beloved character. Part of the success of the adult tone of this new cartoon offering is the score, which must dance a fine line between humorous and dark, mixing the two when appropriate. Composer Jefferson Friedman, who is familiar with DC having scored the short-lived Powerless, took on the task and spoke to us about his process on the latest episode of The Fourth Wall podcast.

Although Friedman is achieving recognition for his work on Harley Quinn as well as on NBC’s popular medical drama, New Amsterdam, writing music for live action and animation can have both understandable differences and surprising similarities. “I do that score with my good friend Craig Wedren, and one of my jobs is to write most of the ER scenes, and writing an ER scene is very similar to writing a fight sequence for Harley Quinn,” says Friedman. “You structure your music in a very similar way even though it sounds completely different… With animation, you get a lot more room for more music just because everything is constructed from the ground up, and all of the dialogue is recorded in a booth. So you can make bigger gestures with music and not have to worry about getting in the way of dialogue in a certain way that you do with live action.”

further reading: The Secret Origin of the Harley Quinn Animated Series

Friedman knew that audiences would have certain expectations of the music of Harley Quinn, based in their previous experience both with the characters in live action movies and with other DC animated properties, but he also wanted to put his own spin on it. "For a show like Harley, which is so clearly referential to Batman: The Animated Series and other more classically drawn animated shows, the music should feel like that,” Friedman says. “For me it was very important that the feeling of the music matched the feeling of the art design and the character design… [but] there’s violence in this show that is funny, and then there’s violence in this show that is not funny and is meant sort of to propel the major plot points forward. And so you treat those things musically completely differently.”

Friedman notes that some of the maturity of Harley Quinn comes from emotional beats between its characters, not just the violence and the violence. “It’s adult in a violent way [but] also very adult in a mature way, and the difference in the music that I wrote came more with the adult, mature stuff like the relationships between characters. And so I actually got the opportunity to write some poignant, emotional music for these characters that the writers and the designers made very three-dimensional, so it was a joy to add to that three-dimensionality.”

That being said, Friedman also had to acknowledge that the main character was still a villain at heart with the music reflecting her attitude towards violence. “It was important to me to make sure that there was always still something fun about the ultra-violence in it, you know?” he says. “I mean, you have to sort of play it ironically or against type, and that sort of makes it more palatable and also kind of more sick and more violent, but then also campy and funny at the same time.”

more: Harley Quinn Episode 1 Review (Spoiler-Free)

When it comes right down to it, Friedman enjoys his job composing the music for Harley Quinn both as an artist and as a fan, not only of the comics content of the show but of the voice actors who provide him with the inspiration for the score. “With a cast like this, it’s impossible not to be inspired! They’re all incredible; I love every single one of these actors. They did such an amazing job,” Friedman gushes. “I think it’s a fantastic show. I would watch it so much if I wasn’t involved in it.”

Harley Quinn released its second episode today on DC Universe, and moments from that episode are referred to in the full audio of this interview on The Fourth Wall podcast — listener beware! The Fourth Wall podcast seeks to allow creative people behind the scenes to break through the illusory "fourth wall" of stage and cinema to speak directly to the audience of their work. Our interviews with authors, composers, set designers, and others give voice to a whole host of artists we wouldn't normally get to hear from. Subscribe so that you never miss an episode, or simply listen to the latest episode below!

Keep tabs with all of the news and reviews for Harley Quinn here!

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Sticher | Acast | RSS

Michael Ahr is a writer, reviewer, and podcaster here at Den of Geek; you can check out his work here or follow him on Twitter (@mikescifi). He co-hosts our Sci Fi Fidelity podcast and coordinates interviews for The Fourth Wall podcast.

Interview
Michael Ahr
Dec 6, 2019

Nikki Haley defends comments about the Confederate flag – NBC News

  1. Nikki Haley defends comments about the Confederate flag  NBC News
  2. Haley: Dylann Roof 'hijacked' Confederate flag from people who saw it as symbolizing 'service, and sacrifice and heritage'  CNN
  3. Nikki Haley Suggests Confederate Flag Meant 'Sacrifice and Heritage' Until Dylann Roof 'Hijacked' It  The Daily Beast
  4. Nikki Haley claims otherwise innocuous Confederate flag was 'hijacked' by killer  The Guardian
  5. Nikki Haley sparks Confederate flag furor with new interview, but says she stands by her decision to remove it from statehouse  CNBC
  6. View full coverage on Google News

David Eason Shares Life Story, Will Shock You with His Truth

Miami Heat! Kourtney Kardashian ‘Can’t Quit’ Younes Bendjima’s ‘Great Sex’

Kourtney Kardashian and Younes Bendjima have been heating up Miami this week, as RadarOnline.com has exclusively learned the former couple are as hot and heavy as ever!

“Younes is a bad habit that Kourtney can’t quit,” a source told Radar. “They’ve never stopped hooking up. They do it all the time.”

On Thursday, December 5, the former lovers were spotted getting intimate at a special event at a fancy nightclub celebrating Kendall Jenner’s new Apple Music radio station.

Kourtney, 40, and Younes, 26, were both in town for the Art Basel festival. While they did not arrive together, a source told Us Weekly, “They both went to a couch in the back together and looked cozy together. They spilled out the back door after about 20 minutes.”

As Radar readers know, the reality star and couple dated for two years, calling it quits in August 2018. But just because they are no longer officially together, there’s no reason they can’t still have some fun.

“They have great sex,” the source revealed. “She doesn’t care about talking to him. They are just in it for the sex.”

This isn’t the first time rumors of a reconciliation have surfaced. In August, Radar reported the  former couple celebrated a friend’s birthday together at the Nice Guy restaurant in West Hollywood. A month later, the exes were spotted holding hands in Los Angeles.

And in April, just as Kourtney turned the big 4-0, the two shared a flirty exchange on Instagram, after the mother of three posted a sexy photo of herself wearing a tight red leather dress. In the caption, she wrote, “Do you take Amex?”

Minutes after she posted the red-hot snap, Younes commented, “You look good Minnie mouse.” Kourtney later responded, “Merci, Mickey.”

The sparks have friends trying to caution the fragile star, but Kourtney will apparently have none of it.

“Everyone tells her to stop going out with him, but she doesn’t care,” the source confessed. “He’s hot. That’s all she wants.”

Listen on Google Play Music

 

The post Miami Heat! Kourtney Kardashian ‘Can’t Quit’ Younes Bendjima’s ‘Great Sex’ appeared first on RadarOnline.

Miami Heat! Kourtney Kardashian ‘Can’t Quit’ Younes Bendjima’s ‘Great Sex’

Kourtney Kardashian and Younes Bendjima have been heating up Miami this week, as RadarOnline.com has exclusively learned the former couple are as hot and heavy as ever!

“Younes is a bad habit that Kourtney can’t quit,” a source told Radar. “They’ve never stopped hooking up. They do it all the time.”

On Thursday, December 5, the former lovers were spotted getting intimate at a special event at a fancy nightclub celebrating Kendall Jenner’s new Apple Music radio station.

Kourtney, 40, and Younes, 26, were both in town for the Art Basel festival. While they did not arrive together, a source told Us Weekly, “They both went to a couch in the back together and looked cozy together. They spilled out the back door after about 20 minutes.”

As Radar readers know, the reality star and couple dated for two years, calling it quits in August 2018. But just because they are no longer officially together, there’s no reason they can’t still have some fun.

“They have great sex,” the source revealed. “She doesn’t care about talking to him. They are just in it for the sex.”

This isn’t the first time rumors of a reconciliation have surfaced. In August, Radar reported the  former couple celebrated a friend’s birthday together at the Nice Guy restaurant in West Hollywood. A month later, the exes were spotted holding hands in Los Angeles.

And in April, just as Kourtney turned the big 4-0, the two shared a flirty exchange on Instagram, after the mother of three posted a sexy photo of herself wearing a tight red leather dress. In the caption, she wrote, “Do you take Amex?”

Minutes after she posted the red-hot snap, Younes commented, “You look good Minnie mouse.” Kourtney later responded, “Merci, Mickey.”

The sparks have friends trying to caution the fragile star, but Kourtney will apparently have none of it.

“Everyone tells her to stop going out with him, but she doesn’t care,” the source confessed. “He’s hot. That’s all she wants.”

Listen on Google Play Music

 

The post Miami Heat! Kourtney Kardashian ‘Can’t Quit’ Younes Bendjima’s ‘Great Sex’ appeared first on RadarOnline.

Watchmen Returns to the NY Times Bestseller List Thanks to Unauthorised Sequel

The New York Times has released its latest graphic novel bestseller list, and joining Raina Telgemeier, Raina Telgemeier, Raina Telgemeier, Raina Telgemeier, Raina Telgemeier, and Raina Telgemeier is Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons‘ seminal work Watchmen (not to be confused with Moore’s fish-semenal work, Neonomicon). Watchmen takes fifth place on the list, spurred by interest in HBO’s unauthorised sequel. Strange Planet by Nathan W. Pyle took the top spot, followed by Guts by Telgemeier, Best Friends by Shannon Hale and LeUyen Pham, and Drama by Telgemeier. Following Watchmen in slots 6-10 are Smile, Ghosts, and Sisters by Telgemeier, White Bird by R.J. Palacio, and Sunny Rolls the Dice by Jennifer and Matthew Holm. My Hero Academia Vol. 1 by Kohei Horikoshi takes the eleventh spot, followed by Stargazing by Jen Wang, The Midwinter Witch by Molly Knox Ostertag, Camp by Kayla Miller, and finally Teen Titans: Raven by Kami Garcia and Gabriel Picolo.

Watchmen’s ranking right in the middle of Telgemeier’s powerhouse quintuplet of books 33 years after its initial release is impressive, even if it does further reward DC and Warner Bros for continuing to exploit Alan Moore’s work without his permission. The bestseller list as a whole, as always, is a sobering look for the insular world of superhero comic book publishing at what the general public actually wants to read when it comes to comic, which tends to be graphic novels geared toward young readers. It’s a fact DC seems keen to capitalize on with the Teen Titans series, but for the most part, the superhero-industrial complex will probably just release a bunch of variant covers and call it a day… or find more of Alan Moore’s work to release unauthorised sequels to.

Watchmen Returns to the NY Times Bestseller List

 

The post Watchmen Returns to the NY Times Bestseller List Thanks to Unauthorised Sequel appeared first on Bleeding Cool News And Rumors.

Sassy Spotify Wrapped Memes & Tweets

funny memes and tweets about spotify wrapped 2019

It may only be the beginning of December, but Spotify decided to release their annual "Wrapped" feature yesterday. The "year in review" offers users some insight regarding their listening habits - favorite artists, favorite songs, etc. This year, the streaming company went the extra mile to give us data for every year since their inception. While it's a fun and enlightening tool, our social media feeds have since been clogged with people sharing their results. Who's gonna tell 'em that people don't want to see that on their timeline? To combat the boring and banal Wrapped posts, resourceful content creators and Twitter users have been hard at work meme-ing the phenomenon and throwing shade on Twitter. The shade is way more entertaining than the Wrapped data. See for yourself.

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GHOSTBUSTERS: AFTERLIFE Poster, Stills, And Story Details Revealed; First Trailer Arrives On Monday!

Plot details for director Jason Reitman's new Ghostbusters movie have finally been revealed, while we also have a teaser poster, official stills, and intel on when you'll be able to see the first trailer!

Readers weigh in on what makes the OnePlus 7 Pro a worthy contender

Trump passes along Saudi king’s ‘sympathies’ after Saudi national kills 3 at naval base – POLITICO

Trump passes along Saudi king's 'sympathies' after Saudi national kills 3 at naval base  POLITICO

Portrait of a Lady on Fire Review

Portrait of a Lady on Fire is like a moving painting. But it's even more transfixing when its characters' interior lives hold you still.

There is much talk about the standards and shackles of convention in Portrait of a Lady on Fire. This should not be a surprise since the exquisitely realized film from writer-director Céline Sciamma follows a young painter in the 18th century who is assigned the task of crafting a portrait literally intended for the male gaze. But just as this woman and her living subject debate the merit of aesthetic truth, and the fleeting quality of an individual’s essence, the film itself is a triumph in unconventional, honest moviemaking.

Constructing a slow boil romance between two women whose shared words barely rise above an innocuous simmer, Sciamma creates a vision as detailed as the best of 18th century artistry. The toast of Cannes and now the New York Film Festival, Portrait of a Lady on Fire asks the audience to study each hushed frame, and in the process reverses the suggestion that portraiture is at its most haunting when it looks like the eyes are moving. In the case of the stolen glances between Noémie Merlant and Adèle Haenel, it is the layered detail of their performances, and the way that they’re photographed, that makes it seem as if they’re not moving at all. This is cinema distilled to the minute, and characters whose visible inner lives can take on the immortalized quality of a mural’s subject.

Set near the end of the 1700s, Marianne (Merlant) is a woman traveling to the French coast as if she is a mercenary for hire. And in many ways she is. While her father is considered a great painter, Marianne is treated as a second choice talent by many due to her gender, including La Comtesse (Valeria Golino) who has retained Marianne to paint a portrait of her daughter Héloïse (Haenel). Marianne is the second person imported for the task, following an unfinished effort by a male contemporary. As it turns out, Héloïse refuses to sit for anyone who would mimic her likeness on a canvas, as it’s meant to lure an Italian nobleman into proposing marriage.

Hence Marianne is given the uncomfortable job of not only being the weaver of Héloïse’s marital bonds, but also to do so in secret. Héloïse is told that Marianne is meant to be a companion for long walks on a chilly shoreline—and while on these strolls, Marianne must in turn memorize every contour of Héloïse’s face and essence if she is to capture it in still life. But what Marianne could not conceive is how quietly she and Héloïse develop romantic attachments that are never fully articulated but eminently understood.

read more: The Lighthouse Review

Ostensibly a period piece, Portrait of a Lady on Fire contains an immediacy as vivid as its title, surpassing any form of genre expectation. French actors Merlant and Haenel blend performances that are both mired in loneliness and an intangible longing for a life as full as the sweeping landscapes around them. Their portrayals are a mutual construct of naturalism that also distinguishes each characters’ very different ideas of individuality.

In Dorothée Guiraud’s costumes, they cut striking silhouettes on windswept cliffs above the ocean. But more impressive is the way that even at the height of their romance, there is something ghostly nostalgic about how they view one another. Especially Marianne, ever the artist and poet, appears haunted by Héloïse even when they’re left alone for a week. Frequently touched with visions of her subject in the wedding dress her painting is driving her toward, Marianne is already living this moment as the memento it’s destined to become. Sequences like this are designed in subtle and intimate shots by Sciamma that reveal a nuanced practicality in both women as opposed to melodrama one might anticipate from the material.

In fact, she and cinematographer Claire Mathon achieve an aching grace in all of their choices, which are allowed to breathe on the screen with almost no score at all. It is the emotion of the scenes that create a melody for the audience. As fine an example as any to date for the merits of a female gaze telling a female story, the sensuality and physicality of Sciamma and Mathon’s compositions are devoid of the lustiness such subject matter might conjure from directors like Abdellatif Kechiche. Rather the humanity of the women’s souls and the quietness of the way they take each other in—or miss the moment of the other’s glance—is what dominates. As does a refreshingly feminist narrative that—as it eventually ropes in maid Sophie (Luana Bajrami) as a third conspirator—still has profound implications to this day.

read more: Must See Movies of 2019

The significance of these moments is contextualized by how Marianne captures them via her own private sketches (each one a monument to a fleeting life event). By extension, Sciamma and Mathon’s own beautiful and meticulously designed photography is reinforced by the cinematic images’ two-dimensional echoes inside Marianne’s book. Portrait of a Lady on Fire drinks as deeply from its characters’ humanity as it does its painterly landscapes. Many frames of this film could be paused and mounted on a wall, just as Marianne chooses select moments to comprise her sketches. But taken together, their whole qualities really do burn with that eponymous fire.

This review was first published on Sept. 27, 2019 during the New York Film Festival.

David Crow is the Film Section Editor at Den of Geek. He’s also a member of the Online Film Critics Society. Read more of his work here. You can follow him on Twitter @DCrowsNest.

4/5
Review David Crow
Portrait of a Lady on Fire Review Lesbian Romance
Dec 6, 2019

Daily Crunch: Uber reveals sexual assault numbers

Mark Ruffalo and the Danger of Capitalism in Dark Waters

Mark Ruffalo took a break from Hulking out to play a real-life hero in the devastating Dark Waters. We discuss that, Scorsese, and more.

In Dark Waters, the searing new drama from director Todd Haynes (Carol), Mark Ruffalo plays real-life attorney Rob Bilott, a rising star at a large corporate law firm whose job has been defending chemical companies. But Bilott unexpectedly finds himself drawn to the case of Wilbur Tennant (Bill Camp), a Parkersburg, West Virginia farmer who comes to Bilott’s Cincinnati office to plead for help after 200 of his cows have died.

Tennant lays the blame at the feet of the DuPont plant that’s been in the town for decades. Having grown up nearby, Bilott has mixed feeling about taking the case. Yet he soon discovers that DuPont, the seemingly all-American company that has provided jobs and economic support for the area, has been poisoning the water for untold years--and that is just the beginning.

Over the course of the film, Bilott puts everything at risk--his family, his job, his life--to claim justice for Wilbur Tennant, the people of Parkersburg, and perhaps even more human beings than any of us can imagine. Remember this name: perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), because once you hear about it in Dark Waters, you’ll never forget it.

Starring in and producing Dark Waters was a no-brainer for Ruffalo: he's a passionate activist for human rights and environmental protection, and when he’s not smashing things up as the Hulk in Marvel movies, he's pursuing projects like like Oscar winner Spotlight and Emmy winner The Normal Heart. Movies that touch on the issues and crises affecting communities large and small, mainstream or marginalized. Like many of his other films, the horror at the heart of Dark Waters goes beyond politics, an idea we touched on when Den of Geek spoke with the actor not long ago.

Den of Geek: It seems like you took a very active role in bringing this to the screen.

Mark Ruffalo: Yeah, I really did. I've been transitioning into developing more things and producing. I read the story, and my agents actually sent it to me as well. They represent Nathaniel Rich (author of the 2016 New York Times article that inspired the film) as well, and they said, "Hey, we know you're looking to do stuff. We think this is really in your wheelhouse, would you be interested?" I read it and I thought it was amazing. I said I'd love to make a bid for it, and so we started that process.

In the course of that, I realized I was actually bidding against Participant, and we decided to join forces because they do what they do so well and we'd already had a great experience with Spotlight. They actually had asked me, "Let's find something to do together," during the course of all that. It all sort of worked out really beautifully.

I'm an activist. I am an environmentalist. I'm politically minded. But there's only so far you can go with that, and I just feel like storytelling is so much more accessible for so many more people. It transcends the politics of an issue and just is people talking to people about their experiences. I felt like this is just a remarkable story at such a high level, and it was mind-blowing to me that nobody knew about it.

read more: David Fincher's Zodiac - The Movie That Never Ended

How much did you know about this yourself beforehand?

Almost nothing. I mean, I knew about PFOA. I knew what it was, but I didn't know the extent of this criminal cover-up. I didn't know that they had known for 50 years. I didn't know that this had gone on from one presidential administration to the next. I didn't know the EPA was looking the other way. I had no idea the depth of criminality that was happening and how many people must have looked the other way in order to have this keep happening.

It almost transcends partisan politics in a way, because it kept going on for decades.

Yeah. Oh, completely. This is more systematic, this is entrenched in our economic system. It's the manifestation of a belief that anything for a buck, anything as long as somebody is making a buck and that the people in power get a little taste of that. We see it over and over again, whether it's the fossil fuel industry, or ExxonMobil knowing about climate change for 30 years and hiding it, and making bullshit science to cover it up, or the tobacco industry telling us that tobacco's healthy for us, or the pharmaceutical industry telling us that Oxycontin is less addictive than Advil. We've seen this shit over and over and over again.

What's interesting about this story is that these people who are fighting for the community are all conservatives. They're not a bunch of liberal environmentalists. This is a farmer in the middle of West Virginia, a corporate defense attorney who believes in corporate self-regulation and everyone else. I like to tell these stories because it reminds us of our humanity, it gets us off of each other long enough to see the real trick that's going on while we're at each other's throats, that there's some really big powerful money interests that are making a killing off killing us.

Strangely, this is the second film you've done in five years after Foxcatcher that has to do with the DuPont family or the DuPont empire.

Yeah. That's not personal, by the way. I don't have anything against them per se.

Right. But it makes you wonder, what is it with these sort of oligarchical families that have been behind the scenes in America for generations, that they're either just kind of weird or they do things like this that act against everybody else's interests?

I think it's because of their privilege and the bubble they live in, and because of this idea that what we tell people in America is that the dollar is everything. If you're rich, you're the shit. You're amazing. You're the best person in the world. That's what our ads tell us. That's a lot of our movies tell us. That's what a lot of the American world tells us.

But when you live in that kind of world, you become less human. You become more isolated. You become less part of the community. Once that happens, then people don't really matter that much anymore. As long as you're on top, and being on top is the number one thing, then how you get there doesn't matter. The people you have to hurt to get there, it doesn't matter. All that matters is that you keep that power and you keep it in the family.

You see where we are now, this concentration of wealth into the top echelon of the United States. These legacy families who keep that wealth and use nepotism to keep that wealth in the family system. That's the whole oligarchic system. I mean that's the manifestation of that kind of belief in the world.

This film is also about whistleblowers, and that couldn't come at a better time right now, when the whole idea of a whistleblower is under threat.

Exactly. Yeah. As if being a whistleblower is somehow political or somehow evil or somehow not worthy of our protection. It's a good time for it. I mean, sometimes these movies come out right in the moment where we're having this kind of discussion. I think it's definitely about PFOA and dealing with that, but this is also about a much bigger systematic problem, which is the slavishness to capitalism, where all of our democracy is in service of this economic system instead of the other way around, where capitalism should be in service of our democracy. This is the problem that you're going to have when that happens.

Did you spend a lot of time with Rob Bilott, and what kind of insight did you glean from him?

Yes. He's been so generous with me in his time and his knowledge and his experience, what he's been through. I really saw this as reportage, kind of like journalism--just tell the truth. If you tell the truth, everything's going to be okay and the story will carry itself. Getting to the truth, that takes some work and a lot of time.

Rob was willing to go down that road with me so I could get the quality of his physicality and could get the quality of his voice, I could get a quality of his internal motivations and understand the family dynamics and understand his dispassionate approach. Those are all very different than me. I couldn't have done any of that without him and his help and his generosity.

read more: Complete MCU Phase 4 Timeline

I'm sure you're aware of the whole debate lately with Martin Scorsese and Marvel. But you're a guy who moves pretty comfortably from the indie world to the big Marvel blockbusters. Does being in Avengers movies and playing a character like Bruce Banner help you in any way to get some sort of leverage to push movies like Dark Waters across?

This is the issue. Everyone in the film business is playing this game. We all know that your movie's got to do well in the market for you to have cache and value. It's something you're always butting up against as a young filmmaker or young actor. It's frustrating and it does not feel fair. It feels like a system that is not always rewarding the best and the most beautiful, or the most artistic.

But yeah, it does change things. It does make you more bankable. It does open doors for you that wouldn't normally be open. The sad truth is if the things that we're making didn't do well, chances are getting something else made is going to be a lot harder the next time around. Marty's had to deal with that. I've had to deal with that. Everyone in the Marvel Universe, every director, we've all had to deal with that. It's part of the reality we're living in.

read more: What Martin Scorsese Gets Right About Marvel and the Industry

It's also a little bit part of the same thing that we're talking about. It's like if everything is measured by how much money it makes, then you're going to have less diversity. You're going to have more monopolizing. If you want to really have a discussion and get real deep about it, let's talk about the whole system.

We used to have an Endowment of the Arts that lifted up some unknown voices, that gave us diversity in our art world. We don't have anything like that anymore. There's a way to do this, but it's going to take some work and people like Marty, and myself, and the studios that are raking it in. There could be a film fund that's created that does subsidize people of color, Native Americans, women filmmakers. Let's open it up to everybody. Let's really have this discussion in a real earnest way; and not pin it on one person, pin it on the whole system.

Speaking of Marvel, do you have any inkling of the future for Bruce Banner and what would you like to see happen with him?

I think there's more storytelling still left with that character, especially with (Professor Hulk) now. I kind of was assuming that it was going to come to an end, but possibly not. I'm going to go and have another meeting with Kevin Feige and see if there's anything left to do or say for those two characters in the future. I'd be into it.

Are there characters you'd like to see Hulk team up with individually, as he did in Thor: Ragnarok?

Some of the newer people. I'd love to see him find his way into the Guardians of the Galaxy, that feels like a good place for him too. Even Black Panther. Maybe the She-Hulk. Yeah, I think there's a lot of cool places for him to go as like the wise one, as the guru. I think there's room for it, and we'll see. We'll see what happens.

Dark Waters opened in limited release two weeks ago and expands into more theaters nationwide on Friday, Dec. 6.

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Don Kaye is a Los Angeles-based entertainment journalist and associate editor of Den of Geek. Other current and past outlets include Syfy, United Stations Radio Networks, Fandango, MSN, RollingStone.com and many more. Read more of his work here. Follow him on Twitter @donkaye

Mark Ruffalo in Dark Waters
Interview Don Kaye
Dec 6, 2019

Johnson, Corbyn wage Brexit battle in final debate before UK election – Reuters

  1. Johnson, Corbyn wage Brexit battle in final debate before UK election  Reuters
  2. This Week in Brexit: These Two Scots May Be the Last Hope to Stop Brexit  Slate
  3. In Brexit Britain, Labour Party risks losing its 'Red Wall' industrial heartlands  NBC News
  4. The Tories may think they've already won – but the stats tell a different story  The Guardian
  5. Next week’s British elections will be a window into 2020  The Washington Post
  6. View full coverage on Google News

THE BATMAN Casts Former GREEN LANTERN Star Peter Sarsgaard In A Mystery Role – Is He Two-Face?

As we close out the week, director Matt Reeves has announced that former Green Lantern and The Magnificent Seven star Peter Sarsgaard has joined the cast of The Batman. Could he be Two-Face?

Adobe is buying the Oculus Medium VR sculpting app – The Verge

  1. Adobe is buying the Oculus Medium VR sculpting app  The Verge
  2. Adobe Acquires Oculus Medium Sculpting App From Facebook  UploadVR
  3. Adobe buys VR creative tool Oculus Medium  ZDNet
  4. Adobe Acquires Oculus’ Sculpting App Medium  VRFocus
  5. View full coverage on Google News

Joe Pera Is Expanding His Quiet Little Universe In Season 2

We chat with the wholesome Joe Pera about beans, sharing the spotlight, and what’s on tap for the second season of his Adult Swim show.

Even though violence, gore, and sex fill Adult Swim’s airwaves, there are still wholesome rays of positivity that shine through the nihilism. Joe Pera Talks With You is almost anti-comedy in how simple and genuine it is. Spun off from his popular infomercial specials, Joe Pera’s series looks at his various mundane passions as he tries to give the audience a brief education on these topics of his choosing. Pera’s unique, gentle personality and the unusual comedic sensibilities of the show’s creative team, Conner O’Malley and Jo Firestone, result in a program that is truly like no other.

The first season of Joe Pera Talks With You made a strong impression. Season 2 only continues that goodwill and pushes Joe to more unexpected places.

With the show returning on December 6th at midnight, we had the opportunity to talk with Joe Pera about what’s ahead, the powerful majesty of lighthouses, and what his dream episode would look like. You can read our spoiler-free review of season 2 here.

DEN OF GEEK: In what ways were you trying to push yourself with the show’s second season and go even further than what you did in the first year?

JOE PERA: We wanted to make sure that every episode felt different and that out subject matter was varied enough. We wanted to maintain the same tone as the first season, but still be able to have this stand on its own and give more time to other characters that we hadn't gotten to spend enough time with in the first season. We also did an episode about lighthouses, which I think was pushing our boundaries in a lot of ways. We got to shoot at a lighthouse, too! I've got to say that was kind of the highlight. Oh yeah, we also shot in Milwaukee in an art gallery! That's probably our version of going big.

It's always good to film stuff inside because it's an easy production, but part of the fun of this show if just how it follows whatever I'm interested in and where that takes things. Last season I got to ride a snowmobile, which was great. It's kind of neat the way that we broke this lighthouse story this season and then you find yourself at a lighthouse. We also do an episode where I take the audience on a hike, so we got to shoot in the woods, which was really a lot of fun. Shooting outside can be tough, but it's a lot of fun and often more interesting.

You touched on how this season kind of shares the spotlight with the show’s various supporting characters. Was it satisfying to get to deepen Joe’s relationship with them this year?

Definitely. It was so enjoyable to come up with ideas for other characters and expand the show in various ways. Jo Scott, who plays Sue Melsky, is such a fantastic actress that it's fun to give her more to do. I help edit the show with the director and often I don't want to be watching myself for all of that time on camera, so it's better when other people can fill up an episode. I'd rather watch somebody else.

Along those lines, things get closer between Joe and Sarah this year as they enter into a relationship together. Was it nice to expand on their dynamic and share the spotlight with her a little?

Yeah, she's certainly a much funnier and better performer than I am. She's the best. So to be able to write more for her has been great. Last season we kind of grew closer together, but this year we're officially in a relationship and it's really sweet.

Similarly, this season has more of a serialized vibe than the first one. Events from previous episodes are definitely referenced more and there’s a sense of progression.

Yeah, I hope so. I mean the goal is always to be able to turn on an episode and be able to just enjoy the subject matter or story. I think it's more enjoyable to watch if you see things continue to grow. To have continuity, not just story-wise, but with characters from previous episodes who can have storylines of their own, it's great.

Have you been shocked by the reception and fandom that the show has received? It’s really nice that something so wholesome can foster such a passionate online community.

That's really nice that people like the show. We did a tour last year and it was just nice that people came out to it. People who like the show seem to have a nice kind of people and they're fun to talk to and mild. We just want to create something nice that you can fall asleep to at night and come away from with a sweet feeling. It's just a nice straightforward show where maybe you learn a little bit. There are no tricks or cheats. So the fact that people can enjoy this show and its slower pace is really, really neat. It's the same with my standup. You hope people get on board with the slower stuff and it's great when they do.

further reading: The Best Comedy Movies on Netflix

Is there a certain episode from the first season that you held up as a benchmark and do you think you’ve topped it this year?

There was a bunch of stuff to be proud of in every episode. We really wanted to make everything feel different or for there to even be a set model for how to do a new episode. I was particularly proud of the fall drive episode. I just like how it connects its story and has this very complete feeling to it. It was a bit of a big swing, but I think it worked out.

The breakfast episode is another favorite of mine and the grocery shopping episode from this season is kind of similar in scope to that one. In both I kind of continue on with a monologue but still encounter new characters and get into their space. They're still very different, but Conner O'Malley wrote both of those ones. We wanted every new episode to feel like something that the audience hadn't seen before.

Are there any topics that you wanted to touch on this year, but couldn’t for whatever reason?

Yeah, we had a storyline where Gene gets a penguin as a pet, but that unfortunately didn't make it in. There was also a canoe trip episode where Gene and I would go canoeing, and kind of a do a riff on this peaceful documentary called Waterwalker. So it would have been this two-part episode where Gene and I go out on a canoe in Lake Superior. I'm kind of glad that we didn't do it because to film in a canoe would have been a real challenge.

That's a really cool idea though. Maybe you could figure out how to make that work for the future.

Yeah, maybe we'll make a movie someday.

You’ve mentioned Gene a bunch and he’s a character that viewers have really responded positively to and it feels like there’s a real connection between you two.

Gene is a great actor. He hasn't done strictly acting before, but he's so funny. Later on in the season he has many episodes that feature him and I'm really excited for them because he does such a good job. We shot 12-hour days, five days a week, but he held in there. We were in a hot car with no air conditioning at like 2 AM or we'd be in a hotel hot tub shooting and he really just goes for it. He's such a good sport and just trust the director. He's learned to have fun with it now. At first I think it was kind of stressful for him, so I'm glad that he's grown into it.

Overall, I think this season will be a little different than the first, but I hope that audiences can still enjoy it just as much. I hope they'll be excited by the risks that we take rather than being upset at me. If they don't like it, then maybe I can just go back to doing long monologues about corn.

The second season of Joe Pera Talks With You premieres December 6th at midnight on Adult Swim.

Daniel Kurland is a published writer, comedian, and critic whose work can be read on Den of Geek, Vulture, and Bloody Disgusting. Daniel knows that the owls are not what they seem, that Psycho II is better than the original, and that Hannibal is the greatest love story ever told. His perma-neurotic thought process can be followed at @DanielKurlansky.

Feature Daniel Kurland
Dec 6, 2019

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Kamikaze Kickstarter Mission with Carrie and Alan Tupper

Alan and Carrie Tupper and Havana Nguyen are the heart of Moving Ink Media!. Based out of Atlanta, the trio’s Glyph award winning work, Kamikaze, has been featured on Bleeding Cool, NPR, Syfy and various other news outlets! The series has been described as “If Mad Max and Batman Beyond raised a kid.” In this interview, we get some insight from Carrie (writer, inker,  painter, and art director) and Alan Tupper (layout and backgrounds artist and rough pages) on their new Kickstarter campaign for Kamikaze, which includes raising funds for an animation adaption!


GREG ANDERSON ELYSÉE: Thanks for making the time, Carrie and Alan Tupper! I understand you’re both busy with your campaign. While I have you both, can you give us a brief run down about Kamikaze? Also what inspired this series?

CARRIE TUPPER: Kamikaze is about what happens when the world’s first heroine grows up 200 years after the fall of human civilization. Markesha, our main character, desperately wants to run away to a better life outside of the dystopian city she calls home. But money is tight and immigration’s expensive. Home girl is trying to save up AND get rent paid so she takes a risky job that blows up in her face, and goes from courier to an anti-gravity equipped covert operative almost overnight.

ALAN TUPPER: The idea started off as us trying to frame and talk about the challenges and experiences of early adulthood. And also to digest a lot of the big problems we struggle with as a civilization today. While we’re tackling these heavy subjects we’ve always approached these stories through the lens of human connection and the spirit of hope and resilience.

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: The series is actually well known in the indie scene, having been a popular web series for 5 years and garnered a few Glyph Awards over the years! What do you feel resonates with audiences with this series?

CARRIE: I think what draws people to the series is the art, but what keeps them in is the story and characters. Markesha is a character a lot of folks relate to because they see themselves in her hustle and struggle. A lot of fans also see themselves in Markesha’s relationship with her father, Toshi – especially if they come from a single-parent home. The relationship between parent and child is unique because you have to rely on each other.

ALAN: We’ve been told by fans that they find the characters compelling and real. They also find the depth and complexity of the world to be exciting. There’s a lot of places to explore in a world like this and our fans are always eager to join us in that exploration.

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: For the first time it appears that you guys are allowing other people to jump on into the sandbox of Kamikaze. Can you tell us a bit about this and who are the creators you have involved?

ALAN: The anthology is really building on an established tradition of bringing outside creators to create short adventures set in the Kamikaze universe. Not only will the anthology feature Midnight Run (written by Dan Jolley, art by Jamel Jones and Licca Kirk) and Soundbox (written by Malisss White, art by Jamel and Hank Jones), it’ll feature at least two new short stories which expand the Kamikaze universe, written by Robert Jeffrey II and John Robinson IV, and art by Takiea Marie and Erin O’Neill Jones. If we can get to our stretch goals we’ll be able to add even more stories and creators like Talynn Kel!

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: I’m a fan of a lot of those creators! Now with the release of your most current Kickstarter, you’re also branching off into animation! What prompts this next step?

ALAN: We keep getting asked for it! “Where can we watch it?” “When is it coming out?” In the last 5 years we’ve had professionals approach us and based off the quality just assume it was animated. Based on that we’ve realized it’s high time to deliver what our fans are asking for.

CARRIE: Sheer impatience and determination. We kept thinking it couldn’t be done, until we talked to Esteban at Echo Bridge.

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: I understand you already have some voices already set up?

CARRIE: Animation needs voices so it was a unique challenge to find actors who fit our characters. One actor we’re really excited about is Lee Shorten (The Man in the High Castle, Supernatural)! He’s been cast to voice Toshi, our leads father. Toshi is a fast favorite character for many of our readers and he’s the beating heart behind the short and Markesha’s story. Now to just hit that stretch goal, so we can get Toshi on screen! We’re also thrilled to have Dani Chambers (Chisei Hatori Ancient Magus’ Bride) as our lead Markesha, Monica Rial (Tsuyu Asui/Froppy from My Hero Academia, Bulma from Dragon Ball Kai) as the Romanian tech engineer Audrey Dalma, and YouTube musician Jonathan Young as our antagonist.

Kamikaze Kickstarter Mission with Carrie and Alan Tupper

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: Wow! What a cast! As of this interview, you have a few days left to raise $27,000 and you’re almost at $22,000! What are some rewards and incentives for new people jumping on to help support and bring this to life?

ALAN: Virtually every backer tier comes with introductory materials for new fans to get up to speed on Kamikaze. The Hero Pack is easily our most popular and includes copies of Volume 1, Volume 2 and the anthology. Other tiers include digital downloads of the short and score, creator commentary and instructions for a game played in Markesha’s world. And our books have always been stuffed with lore and world-building material for fans who really want to dive deep.

ANDERSON ELYSÉE: I really hope people will jump on board and make this a reality, because I am in fact a fan of the book and would love to see this animation happen!

 

*NOTE: Carrie and Alan Tupper were kind and able enough to get some quotes from various members of the animation, from actors to animators to further whet your appetite!*

 

CAST OF KAMIKAZE: 

How did you get involved with Kamikaze? 

DANI CHAMBERS (Voice of Markesha Nin): What attracted me to this project was the art style and story. I love the character designs and the way the backgrounds are drawn! It’s so mesmerizing to me and seeing it animated just makes me so excited to see this beautiful art come to life!

MONICA RIAL (voice of Audrey Dalma): I was approached about the project by Carrie Tupper while appearing at a convention. I was so inspired by her passion for this project. I could tell it was something very special. As she told me more about the diversity of the cast and the relatable issues the characters face, I knew I wanted to be a part of it. What I admire most about Audrey is her strength and intelligence. She is an inventor with a heart of gold. She’s had a rough life but that doesn’t keep her from trusting others. She still manages to see the best people. And she accomplishes all of this while still grappling with the English language. I’ve had a long career voicing various strong ladies and I’m honored to add Audrey to that list.

KEVIN PACULAN (Voice of Link Sohn): What drew me to this project was the diverse set of characters that were established in the comics. They felt so organic to the merciless dystopian world presented and each character had a unique personality I enjoyed learning about as I read on. There’s a lot to admire about Link and one of them is his charming attitude in this dangerous world you can’t trust anyone. He’s witty and cocky but he’s this smart young hacker who knows what he has to do to keep the team up on its feet.

What have you learned from working on Kamikaze?

RIAL: I’ve learned so much from both the creative team and Kamikaze itself. First of all, I know this gets said often but it should be said again and again: representation is important. These characters are each so different and three dimensional. You can find a little of yourself in each of them. I love the idea that a little girl who’s immigrated to the U.S., possibly struggling with the language, could see Audrey and realize that she could grow up to be just as strong and successful someday if she believes in herself. That’s so inspiring.

Whenever I’m recording for Audrey my go-to word is “Heart.” Audrey has such a big heart and she is genuinely concerned for those around her. It’s incredibly sweet. She looks so tough but she’s got a soft side.

This process has also taught me that Kamikaze has amazing, loyal fans. There are so many folks who I didn’t even know were fans of the series until the Kickstarter announcement. I was being congratulated by people who had read the comics and I didn’t even realize they were comic readers.

CHAMBERS: Each of the characters come from a different place. The team that Markesha ends up being with starts to become family. All from different backgrounds, but still can create a team to get the job done. Learning this, also shows me that the audience wants this as well. People from all sorts of places and background coming together to get the good things done! It does help me feed into Markesha. She has been through so much with her dad and knowing that she is starting to learn to depend on others to help, shows me that she can grow. I want to show that with my voice that she will grow as a character to become more open to listen to people.

PACULAN: I’ve learned a lot about promotional strategies so far with this Kickstarter and how constant you have to be with contacting and spreading information with social media. Social media isn’t really my thing but it’s my first time experiencing something like this, so there’s lots to learn. From what I’ve learned about Link, he attracts a humorous audience, I’m sure many readers love his attitude and his fashion style. All of this helps with voicing the character because it gives me ideas of what else I can experiment with the character’s personality traits

What are your hopes for this project? 

RIAL: The hope is that this is just the beginning. I think everyone involved would love to see Kamikaze animated beyond the trailer and pilot episode. We would be delighted if we had the opportunity to make it a full series! Most of all, we want to make the Kamikaze fans happy and proud to be a part of this fandom. Anything beyond that is just the icing on the cake.

PACULAN: I hope that with this animated pilot and anthology series being made, this acts as a launch pad to reach other studios that will help escalate this project into a full animated series with a larger cast and production team. I would like to see this passionate teams voice be heard and be able to reach more audiences beyond just comics and animation.

CHAMBERS: That we will be continuing to tell this amazing story and have it as a 12 episode series! I am so ready for it too! This amazing art and characters in a fully animated series? What could be better than that?!

 

THE PRODUCTION TEAM AT ECHO BRIDGE 

What have been the lessons working on Kamikaze has taught you?

ESTEBAN VALDEZ (Animation Director): For me, it’s been a privilege to have met Carrie, Alan, and Havana Nguyen (Lead Character Artist, letterer and graphic designer) when they first launched Kamikaze many years ago. I think we all united around a similar consensus that we were all tired of seeing the same concepts and stories being retold, rehashed, and refurbished to audiences who have been craving for something new and original for about a decade now, but haven’t really gotten it. The marketplace forgot the idea just because the audience likes a brand that that’s all they want to see and consume. People have different tastes, ideas, and wants and if we’re talking about true diversity in creating content, being able to be creatively diverse is just what Kamikaze is bringing to the table. And we’re happy to support the team in their efforts to bring their passion and love for animation and comics to life.

OMAR McCLINTON (Producer): The Kamikaze team is very careful to remember what the project is all about the human condition. They understand that this “Kamikaze world” is no longer their project, but they share it with the fans and it’s refreshing to see producers take such pride and careful attention to this responsibility and how the fans appreciate it. This, among all else, makes this a very special project for everyone involved.

What’s going from comic to animation look like in practice? Is the 10-minute pilot all you’re aiming for or are you looking to go beyond that?

VALDEZ: In practice, it should be a straightforward path. There is demand on both the audience and distribution side. We have supply. Basic economics. And seeing as we’re at the very start of the streaming wars, it should become very interesting. With regards to the short… Well, I think you know the answer.

McCLINTON: Evolution of any character, whether in the narrative of the story or the means used to tell it, is always a good thing. The animated short is a natural progression for the character and the fans to enjoy the Kamikaze universe. I see this as the next step, but not the last in its continued evolution.

What are your hopes for Kamikaze?

VALDEZ: A very bright future. Carrie, Alan, and Havana have poured their passions into the property to make something purely for the audience. What I would hope for Kamikaze is that it continues to pave the way for other independent creators to make the leap into creating something bold and new. In addition, I would hope for Kamikaze to not just have a seven-season run, but to become its own franchise in and of itself. I’m a big supporter of the independent and I would love to see a happy ending for people who work hard and have tremendous character. That would be a really big win in my book.

 

*Campaign ends Tue, December 10 2019 11:59 PM EST! Check it out and pledge on THE LINK today!

The post Kamikaze Kickstarter Mission with Carrie and Alan Tupper appeared first on Bleeding Cool News And Rumors.

Antonio Brown Begs For Another NFL Shot, Apologizes for ‘Inexcusable’ Behavior

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Teresa Giudice: I’m Not Sure I Ever Want to See Joe Again!

Since his release from prison and deportation to Italy, Joe Giudice has made it clear that he's still very horny for Teresa Giudice.

Also, he wants to stay married.

Teresa Touches Joe

In the meantime, however, Teresa doesn't even seem to be in a rush to rail her estranged husband. Or even see him for that matter.

Celebrity news site Radar Online spoke to an inside source that warns that Teresa is fully prepared to ghost Joe over the holidays.

"Teresa is refusing to say for sure if she is going to see Joe in Italy for Christmas," the insider reveals.

Teresa Giudice at Bravocon 2019

The source does of course confirm: "The girls are definitely going to see Joe in Italy again."

"They can’t wait to see their dad," explains the insider.

On the other hand, the source details that "Teresa still doesn’t know what she is going to do."

Visiting Joe

"Teresa tasted her freedom," the insider observes, making reference to the four years that they spent apart during their back-to-back incarcerations.

Notably, she has been married to Joe for 23 years. That's a lot of time to forget what it's like to be single.

The source continues, "and she liked it.”

Teresa Giudice on Good Morning America

The report goes on to say that Teresa is contemplating more than just waiting a few (several, actually) extra months before she sees her husband.

“She still is considering divorcing Joe," the insider says.

That makes sense. Some are romantics at heart and would keep their marriage alive even if they were separated by an ocean.

Joseph Giudice

But if we're being pragmatic?

If you know that you'll always be on separate continents from now on, sometimes what you both need is a clean break.

It doesn't help matters that reports say that Teresa and Joe both had issues during the family trip to Italy.

Joe Giudice and Family

Don't get us wrong, all four of their daughters are over the moon to see their father again.

"Teresa and Joe were arguing a lot," an insider claimed at the time.

That same source continued, saying that they were awkward "and wouldn’t go near each other" during the visit.

Teresa Giudice and Joe on Bravo

Now, does Teresa's reluctance to commit to seeing Joe over the next month mean that she's spitefully avoiding him?

After all, her daughters are already going. What's one plane ticket's price for one of the OG Real Housewives?

We don't think that it's out of malice - or, at least, not purely so.

Teresa on Watch What Happens Live

Teresa has already offered up an extremely plausible explanation for why she can't go galavanting off to see Joe over the holidays.

Last month, Teresa Giudice sat down with Bravo personality and producer Andy Cohen on Watch What Happens Live.

She was the first to admit that she has no plans to see Joe any time soon, even though her daughters will see him this month.

Joe Giudice Selfie

Teresa explained that, to put it bluntly, this is the time of year when she works.

And why can't she see him some other time? Well, because the girls have school, and she wants to be here for them.

Not everyone buys Teresa's explanation.

Joe Giudice on Way to Court

Certainly, Bravo would be happy to pay her more or less whatever she wants to let their cameras follow her to visit Joe in Italy.

What do her girls need? Super chill babysitters? Personal drivers? Tutors? What's that to a network when they could film such an awkward vacay?

Maybe one day, we'll get that. For now, Teresa doesn't plan to see Joe for many months.

How The Empire Strikes Back Became the Best Star Wars Movie

We continue our series of Star Wars revisits with a look at one of the most well-regarded movies in the entire Skywalker saga

How do you follow up Star Wars? That was the question facing George Lucas after the first film surpassed every expectation and gave birth to what we now know as one of cinema’s most important (and lucrative) franchises.

Thankfully, 1980’s The Empire Strikes Back delivered in spades – becoming one of those rarities that's considered by many to be a sequel superior to its original. Adjusted for inflation, it’s the second-highest-grossing sequel of all-time. But it didn’t always look so likely to succeed, even for Lucas, who had hired a writer to initially pen a sequel to Star Wars in novel form that would tie up loose ends if the first film bombed.

Stream everything Star Wars with a FREE TRIAL of Disney+, on us!

Scrapping that after the overwhelming positivity surrounding the first entry in the saga, Lucas financed the sequel himself with $33 million, much of which was obtained from loans. This risk also gave him complete creative autonomy, which he used to install Irvin Kershner as director – a man known for smaller-scale movies who felt unprepared for the task of directing Empire. Lucas also famously fell out with the Writers and Directors Guilds of America owing to the lack of credits at the movie’s beginning, instead opting for the same opening scroll style as the original Star Wars.

The rest, as they say, is history. Despite mixed reviews initially, The Empire Strikes Back expertly weaves multiple narratives while offering more character-driven moments and genuine motivation. The film charts Luke Skywalker’s (Mark Hamill) continued training alongside exiled Jedi master Yoda, the struggles of the Rebel Alliance against the now more imposing Galactic Empire, as well as strengthening the blossoming relationship between Han Solo (Harrison Ford) and Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher).

Factor in some of the most beloved setpieces in the saga (specifically the Battle of Hoth and the lightsaber duel in Cloud City), the arrival of everyone’s favorite bounty hunter Boba Fett, and the first appearance of Emperor Palpatine (albeit by hologram), and the movie’s 124-minute run time seems to absolutely fly by.

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Three years on from the Death Star being blown to smithereens, the Rebel Alliance is located on the snow planet of Hoth when the base is discovered covered by an Imperial probe droid. A recently injured Luke Skywalker has a vision of Obi-Wan, who tells him to go to Dagobah. An Imperial assault begins, providing our first look at the now historic AT-AT walkers, and in the ensuing evacuation Han and Leia depart from the Rebel forces and Luke takes himself to Dagobah in search of Yoda, a mysterious Jedi master.

Of course, the rest is almost a story as old as time at this point. Luke trains with Yoda, before cutting his training short when Han and Leia are ambushed by Darth Vader while hiding out in Cloud City. What follows is arguably the most famous plot twist in cinematic history, as Vader reveals himself to be Luke’s dad, before setting up Return of the Jedi with one hell of a bleak, cliffhanger ending.

Of course, John Williams’ soundtrack reaches through every frame of the movie and heightens every scene. It’s the first time we hear the proper "Imperial March" (prequel reprises notwithstanding), a piece of music that has become pervasive in every walk of life at this point, while "Yoda’s Theme" remains an understated classic, too.

Despite Boba Fett’s popularity, he plays a minor role here – he appears as a bounty hunter in a lineup of several others, but aside from being the character tasked with delivering Han Solo to Jabba at the movie’s conclusion, he doesn’t really do a lot. On the other hand, the mysterious Dark Side of the Force gets some fun new tidbits here – we see the Emperor appear in a hologram, but also get an insight into just what is under Darth Vader’s helmet when he’s sitting in his meditation pod. It wouldn’t be until Return of the Jedi that both would be fully revealed, but these fleeting hints at two evil forces that clearly aren’t quite human preserve the mystique of both “big bad” characters.

The real reveal as far as Vader is concerned is obviously the big twist, and it’s delivered masterfully – and received painfully – by both Vader and Luke. Hamill was famously told nothing until moments before filming the scene, while allegedly Harrison Ford had no idea until he saw the completed movie.

Read More: Star Wars Movie and TV Release Date Calendar

Ford’s Han Solo carries much of his roguish charm from the original into Empire, and manages to walk the line between being a jerk, or a “nerf-herder”, and a loveable scoundrel. His relationship with Princess Leia feels earned, rooted in schoolyard teasing but with a clear amount of chemistry. His “I know” response to her admission of love for him remains one of the greatest improvised lines in movie history.

The Empire Strikes Back is a continuation of the original Star Wars story with no real end-cap – an approach that at the time divided audiences, who would need to wait three long years to find out what would happen to our heroes and villains. However, time has shown it to be a sci-fi masterpiece – a character-driven drama played among explosive action setpieces, with a fresh sense of scale, offering more action, better effects, a wider soundtrack, and more confident performances than the original Star Wars. For all those reasons, it’s undoubtedly one of cinema’s great sequels.

Best lightsaber bit: Luke may have felt confident enough to take on Vader in the middle of his Jedi training, but he was wrong to do so – Vader handily beats him, taunting him as he does so. After Obi-Wan’s short battle with the Sith Lord in the first film, you’d have thought Luke would have realized the task ahead of him.

Best non-lightsaber bit: Yoda’s demonstration of the Force, lifting Luke’s X-Wing out of the swamp on Dagobah, is truly awe-inspiring and goosebump-inducing when paired with Williams’ stirring soundtrack.

Read More: Star Wars Movies Disney+ Streaming Guide

Jedi wisdom: “Do or do not, there is no try.” Arguably the most famous Jedi quote in the entire franchise, Yoda’s advice to Luke was recognized as one of the American Film Institute’s top 100 movie quotes.

Rules of the Force: It turns out that, just like anything in life, practice makes perfect – and as powerful as Luke may be, he needs a lot of training to reach his full potential as a Jedi Knight. A big part of that training turns out to be somersaults and stacking rocks using the Force, something that requires lots of patience and letting go of all emotion.

Who has a bad feeling about this? It’s Princess Leia this time, and she’s not wrong – when hiding from the Empire in the belly of a huge monstrosity living in an asteroid, she utters the immortal line just before the bat-like Mynocks attack the Millennium Falcon’s windscreen.

Galactic stop-offs: Plenty of sightseeing to do here, with the ice planet of Hoth and the swamp world of Dagobah making their debuts (and writing themselves into history), while the aforementioned asteroid field also proves a handy stop-off. Finally, there’s Bespin – a gas giant that is home to a mining complex called Cloud City, a floating civilization in the sky ruled over by Han’s backstabbing buddy Lando Calrissian (Billy Dee Williams), where much of the movie’s final act takes place.

Who wins? The most definitive downer ending of the Original Trilogy, Empire leaves things on a sour note. Han is frozen in carbonite and on his way to Jabba to become a wall decoration (or worse), leaving Leia heartbroken, while Luke is half a Jedi having not completed his training, and with a hand missing, too – and that’s saying nothing of the psychological trauma of finding out your Dad is the worst monster in the galaxy. Meanwhile, the Rebel Fleet is scattered to the wind, Vader has sown the seeds of doubt in Luke’s head, and by the end of the movie he’s pretty much choked out a good percentage of the Empire’s high-ranking officers, too.

Listen to the latest Star Wars Blaster Canon podcast:

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Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Feature Lloyd Coombes
Dec 6, 2019

Hal Jordan and John Stewart Team Up in Green Lantern: Earth One Vol 2, Summer 2020

Special Edition Coke Bottles With OLED Lightsabers (In Singapore)

Gift Guide: VR gear you won’t feel stupid for buying

Welcome to TechCrunch’s 2019 Holiday Gift Guide! Need help with gift ideas? We’re here to help! We’ll be rolling out gift guides from now through the end of December. You can find our other guides right here.

There have been holiday gift guides for VR for the past five years or so and for most of that time, buying a VR headset was generally a bad call.

There were still fun experiences to be had, but the gear was expensive and the troubleshooting was not for the faint of heart. I’ve played around with most of the gear that’s out there and honestly most of it isn’t ready for consumers, but if there’s someone in your life dying to get into VR, here are some earnest recommendations.

This article contains links to affiliate partners where available. When you buy through these links, TechCrunch may earn an affiliate commission.

The best headset for 99.5% of people

 

 

This year, Facebook released the Oculus Quest for $399 and, honestly, it’s the only headset made by Oculus or anyone else that I’ve been able to give a full-throated recommendation for. Setup and upkeep are both simple and benefitted by its standalone mobile form factor — this one just works by itself, no PC required. There’s a worthy amount of content for something in its price range and it’s overall not a purchase you’ll feel dumb later for making.

$399 a little steep for a Christmas present? Obviously that’s understandable, but I would honestly just not go for a VR gift if that’s the case. Most VR gear below this price point is relatively clunky (with the caveat that for PlayStation owners, the PlayStation VR is still a great deal… though I think I’d still recommend the Quest if you’re willing to drop the extra money. It’s just such an easy system to love.)

Price: $399 from Oculus

To help you see better: prescription inserts

 

All of Oculus’s new headsets have a good amount of space in the headset to accommodate users that wear glasses, but if you’re the main person using the headset, it’s a lot more comfortable to just get prescription inserts made. It’s a little extreme, sure, but comfort is a big deal in VR so you won’t regret it if you’re already logging some decent mileage on your headset.

Price: $80 from FramesDirect

To help you be less gross: VR Cover

 

If you’re using your VR device as a device to get you moving and you’re regularly sweating while playing some of the more intense titles, that headset is getting pretty nasty I guarantee. VR Cover has been making masks that cover up the section your face touching the headset and they’re pretty decent quality and available for most popular headsets. These are great if you’re a bit sweaty or are regularly showing friends your new headset.

Price: $19 on Amazon

To help you get mobile: carrying case

 

The Quest is a portable console but that doesn’t mean you just want to toss it into your bag without any cares. It still is rather sensitive and if you scratch the lenses or tracking cameras, you are probably in for a bad time. The first-party Oculus Quest case is a pretty solid purchase with room for your headset and controllers, but not much else.

Price: $40 on Amazon

To help you get immersed: some solid wired headphones

 

If you’re the owner of a new Quest, Go or Rift S, you also will probably also want to be the owner of some decent wired headphones. The stereo speakers embedded in the headsets are good in a pinch, but your experience is going to be a lot better with some decent headphones and the Quest doesn’t allow for bluetooth headsets, so, sorry, no AirPods.

There are two schools of thought for which headphones are best for VR, ones that cut you off completely or ones that let you hear what’s going on a bit so that you’re at least somewhat aware of your surroundings. But be reasonable, you shouldn’t be basing your headphones purchase on what works for VR, so get some noise-cancelling headphones you’d also want while you’re traveling or some on-ear headphones you’d also use for at-home listening.

I’m a big fan of Grado headphones even though they aren’t all that comfortable for long sessions, but you can’t do wrong with an $80 pair of Grado SR60e headphones. I never miss a chance to recommend them. I’ve always been a Bose user when it comes to noise-cancelling headphones, but I also haven’t owned many pairs and I know most audiophiles will point you in Sony’s direction, so maybe a classic pair like their WH-1000XM3 will do (though remember you’ll have to use the included wire with most VR headsets.)

Price: Grado SR60e (Wired), $80 on Amazon | Sony WH-1000XM3 (Wireless), $278 on Amazon

The best headset for die-hards

 

 

 

If the best headset for 99.5% of people is the Oculus Quest, for the rest it’s the Valve Index. The PC headset is about as high-end as you would reasonably want as a consumer, though you are still definitely investing in a more complicated solution than the Quest. No other products on the market have the well thought-out feature set that the Index does. It’s less approachable, but its feature set screams high-end even if most VR games can’t make the most of what it offers. For PC gamers, there aren’t many good choices out there these days, but if you’re going to take a step beyond the Quest, you should get the Index (though it’s worth noting this is on pretty hefty back-order and won’t ship pre-Christmas.)

Price:  $999 from Valve

 

STAR WARS: THE RISE OF SKYWALKER – Here’s Every Officially Released Still And Behind The Scenes Image So Far

We're two weeks away from the arrival of Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and if you're looking for every single official image from the movie, then this is the gallery for you! Check it right here...

Shhh

Cannibalistic Dinosaurs Went Through a Lot of Teeth – The New York Times

Cannibalistic Dinosaurs Went Through a Lot of Teeth  The New York Times

AI-powered Lego sorter knows the shape of every brick

Uber’s Crime Report Is ‘Highly Alarming,’ Says a Criminologist – WIRED

Uber's Crime Report Is ‘Highly Alarming,’ Says a Criminologist  WIREDView full coverage on Google News

Buttigieg confronted by voters over work for McKinsey – POLITICO

  1. Buttigieg confronted by voters over work for McKinsey  POLITICO
  2. When Pete Buttigieg Was One of McKinsey’s ‘Whiz Kids’  The New York Times
  3. Pete Buttigieg can’t talk about three years of his life at McKinsey  Los Angeles Times
  4. Maybe this is what Pete Buttigieg was trying to say about empathy  The Washington Post
  5. Buttigieg’s Untenable Vow of Silence  The New York Times
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Report: Magic Leap’s early device sales aren’t looking good

Daily Deals: The KFC 11 Herbs and Spices Firelog Is Back for 2019 (And It’s Real)

Today's spotlight deal is for fried chicken lovers only. And not just any chicken, but Colonel Sanders' finger lickin' good chicken. You should also check out the one-day Amazon board game sale with titles that usually don't show up in these sales, as well as a steal on the most popular Arcade1Up video game cabinets.

Back Again for the 2019 Holidays: KFC 11 Herbs and Spices Firelog for $18.99 Only at Walmart

kfcfirelogUndoubtedly owing to the success of last year's Christmas sale, the KFC Firelog is back for another round! If you want your house to smell like Colonel Sanders' fried chicken without actually eating fried chicken (or while eating fried chicken?), this this log is for you! KFC does explicity state some warnings that you should heed: (1) may result in a craving for fried chicken, (2) please do not attempt to eat it, and (3) please do not put your face directly into the fire in attempt to smell fried chicken. Believe it or not, this isn't a gag; it's an actual, legitimate product endorsed by KFC themselves and Enviro-Log is the official manufacturer.

Continue reading…

Top Ten Nude Scenes Of 2019 Are Finally Here

Jinger Duggar Backs Out of Charity Event, Prompts Mass Concern Among Fans

Jinger Duggar is apparently an unwanted woman at the moment.

And no one is quite sure what is going on.

Jinger in the Kitchen

On two separate occasions this week, the Counting On star has either lost promotional opportunities and/or backed out of public events, leaving fans to wonder what the heck is going on with Jinger and her husband, Jeremy.

In a surprising turn, for example, we now know that the famous couple will NOT be attending Sunday night's Rebecca Minkoff Mommy Pampering Event.

The reality stars had only just confirmed this partnership a few weeks ago.

“As the holiday season is in full swing, I thought it’d be a great time to give back!" Vuolo wrote back then, alongside a photo of herself at one of the brand's stores. 

Jinger Duggar on Thanksgiving

He added this fall:

"I’m excited to announce I’ve partnered with [Rebecca Minkoff] to throw a mommy pampering event at their flagship location in Los Angeles."

But now... he and Jinger are both out.

“In the spirit of the holiday season, Rebecca Minkoff will still be partnering with Toys For Tots at their L.A. store,” the description for the event reads on Eventbrite, with the company adding:

“Unfortunately, due to personal circumstances Jinger and Jeremy will no longer be making an appearance at the event, but [we] encourage you to donate to this great cause.”

Jinger Duggar Anniversary Pic

Personal circumstances.

That's rather vague and ominous, isn't it?

Adding intrigue to this story is what transpired just a day before... when Jinger was harshly dissed by the owners of a donut company.

Yes, a donut company.

Jeremy Vuolo, Jinger Duggar, and Felicity Vuolo Attend a Wedding

On Wednesday, Fonuts founders Nancy Truman and Thom Furtado announced they were severing professional ties with Jinger after they received complains from fans who brought up the scandals linked to the Duggar family.

“Please accept our sincerest apology," Truman and Furtado wrote on Instagram.

"We apologize for our recent poor choice of promotional partner.

"We were shocked and dismayed to learn about who we were associating with. we recognize we really made a mistake by not properly researching them."

down with jinger

This critical statement concluded:

We would like you all to know, we promise to be more diligent in the future and will only work with people who truly represent our core values of kindness, inclusivity and transparency.

We are so sorry, and we really hope you will forgive us for this mistake.

Jinger and Jeremy Vuolo in LA

The bakery didn't come out and specify the basis behind this decision -- but we all know about the never-ending Duggar controversies, don't we?

In 2015, it was revealed that Josh Duggar had molested several women, including his own sisters.

Elsewhere, Derick Dillard has been outspoken in his anti-LGBTQ views.

Heck, just last month, reports surfaced that Josh's business was raided by Homeland Security.

It's almost as if a family that cranks out this many children and holds such extreme conservative values is all kinds of effed up deep down inside.

Khloe Kardashian to Fans: I’ll Forgive Tristan If I Feel Like It!

Earlier this week, Khloe Kardashian lashed out at her fans after they reacted negatively to Sunday night's episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians.

The episode showed Malika Haqq, Scott Disick, and others encouraging Khloe to remain open to the possibility of forgiving and possibly even reconciling with Tristan Thompson.

Khloe and Tristan's Thanksgiving

Some viewers rightly felt that Khloe getting back together with Tristan sounds like a terrible idea.

And, of course, many of them expressed that belief on Twitter, leading to a firm clap-back from Khloe:

“I keep seeing people criticizing my best friends,” True's mom tweeted.

“My best friends would never do anything to hurt me. I can say that will full confidence!" she continued.

Khloe Kardashian at the PCAs

"You guys don’t know the entire story. EVER!! You watch 44 minutes of an episode and really think you know it all. Stop talking about my friends.”

Of course, by focusing on the criticism of her friends instead of her relationship with Tristan, Khloe side-stepped the issue that had so many fans up in arms in the first place.

She rectified that on Thursday by indirectly addressing her feelings toward Tristan in a lengthy Instagram tirade.

“I don’t hold any negative or hateful feelings towards ANYONE!” Khloe wrote.

Khloe Kardashian and Tristan Thompson on Halloween

“We are all humans trying to figure out this thing called life. Who am I to condemn anyone else?" she asked her followers.

"Yes, I’m allowed to feel hurt and pain. It would be unnatural for me to pretend as if I don’t," Khloe continued.

"Personally, I don’t want to be carrying around a hateful heart. I crave peace in my life. Me holding onto hate is going to hurt me in the end.”

She never mentioned Tristan by name, but it's pretty clear who she's talking about.

“I have chosen to not pollute my heart and my energy by holding onto anything negative," Khloe continued.

Cuddle for Khloe

"I am allowed to forgive. Forgiveness is a strength and not a weakness.”

Again, no one has wronged Khloe quite like Tristan, so when she starts ranting about forgiveness, we assume she's referring to her baby daddy.

We suppose it's possible that Khloe is thinking of forgiving Jordyn Woods, but frankly, that seems unlikely.

Sure, Tristan is far more at fault for his illicit hookup with Jordyn -- who was only 21 at the time and was not in a relationship herself -- but don't tell that to Khloe.

This is clearly a woman who's made up her mind -- and you can expect an announcement that she's back together with Tristan sometime before the end of the year.

Evaluating where the Chiefs stand at running back ahead of Patriots matchup – Arrowhead Pride

  1. Evaluating where the Chiefs stand at running back ahead of Patriots matchup  Arrowhead Pride
  2. Patriots' Tom Brady makes light of toe, elbow injuries  ESPN
  3. 6 reasons for the Patriots to feel optimistic against the Chiefs  Boston.com
  4. Chiefs’ Damien Williams officially out Sunday; Claiborne, Fenton also won’t play  Belleville News-Democrat
  5. If they can limit Tyreek Hill and Pat Mahomes just enough, expect the Patriots to stay unbeaten at home  The Boston Globe
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Wife of Papa John’s founder John Schnatter asks for divorce – NBCNews.com

  1. Wife of Papa John's founder John Schnatter asks for divorce  NBCNews.com
  2. Wife of Papa John's founder John Schnatter files for divorce after 32 years, calls marriage 'irretrievably ...  Fox News
  3. Papa John's Founder John Schnatter's Wife Files for Divorce  TMZ
  4. Papa John’s Christmas Dinner Pizza Will Have You Feeling Festive In No Time  Delish.com
  5. Wife of Papa John's founder files for divorce  WSLS 10
  6. View full coverage on Google News

KFC is selling a chicken-scented fire log to warm your drumsticks this holiday season – CNN

  1. KFC is selling a chicken-scented fire log to warm your drumsticks this holiday season  CNN
  2. Extra crispy fire: Walmart is selling KFC fried chicken scented firelog  WJW FOX 8 News Cleveland
  3. KFC Yule log returns  Click On Detroit | Local 4 | WDIV
  4. Daily Deals: The KFC 11 Herbs and Spices Firelog Is Back for 2019 (And It's Real) - IGN  IGN
  5. KFC Yule log returns to make your house smell like fried chicken  WDIV ClickOnDetroit
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Researchers create bone-inspired 3D-printed building materials

Law Firm Sues Apple and Samsung, Claiming Phones Exceed Radiofrequency Radiation Safety Levels – MacRumors

  1. Law Firm Sues Apple and Samsung, Claiming Phones Exceed Radiofrequency Radiation Safety Levels  MacRumors
  2. Samsung’s Galaxy S11 reportedly has a 108-megapixel camera and 5x telephoto  Circuit Breaker
  3. Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Lite could have a bigger battery than Note 10 Plus  TechRadar
  4. Sam's Club is preparing another stunning deal on the latest iPhones and Samsung flagships  PhoneArena
  5. Samsung Insider Delivers Galaxy S11 Bad News Blow  Forbes
  6. View full coverage on Google News

The New ‘Mandalorian’ Episode Hints At An Old Star Wars Character Come Back – The Federalist

  1. The New 'Mandalorian' Episode Hints At An Old Star Wars Character Come Back  The Federalist
  2. The Mandalorian: Episode 5 Review  IGN
  3. Baby Yoda is key to the Disney+ takeover  The Verge
  4. Muppets In the 'Star Wars' Universe? It Could Happen, Thanks to This New Character  Showbiz Cheat Sheet
  5. Baby Yoda memes are good and nobody can convince me otherwise  SYFY WIRE
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country & Its Political Parallels

A look back at Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, the final outing for The Original Series cast.

This article originally appeared on Den of Geek UK.

Star Trek: VI: The Undiscovered Country remains the final ensemble outing for the cast of Star Trek: The Original Series, the show that started it all. Let's take a look back at how this miraculous film came to be and why it deserves recognition in this franchise's 50-year history...

Despite my personal opinions, the reception to Star Trek V: The Final Frontier was nothing short of disastrous: A Razzie for Worst Picture, derision across the board, enough fallout to kill the career of producer Harve Bennett and stop William Shatner from ever directing another movie. But Star Trek: The Next Generation fortunately found its feet not long after, and the franchise survived.

But what of the aging original cast? They were unwanted, unloved, too old, and too much of a financial risk. Gene Roddenberry, in rapidly failing health, was using what was left of his clout as Next Generation showrunner (even if the day-to-day running of the show was something of a power vacuum due to said failing health) to try and get his Starfleet Academy story made. Again.

At the time, there was in fact a real possibility that Paramount wanted, for its next Star Trek film, to recast Spock and Kirk as young mavericks. Harve Bennett wrote a script that he described as "Top Gun in space" and would feature a decidedly un-Trek like story of Spock having to deal with bullying, and Kirk avenging the death of his father.

The idea had been doing the rounds since Star Trek II, but no one wanted to do it because of the backlash from the fans, and the fact that it didn't really sound that good. Harve Bennett's pitch for Star Trek: The Academy Years didn't go down too well and, as a result, he left Paramount entirely. Whether he left of his own accord or was fired isn't clear. 

read more: 18 Star Trek Movies and TV Shows That Never Happened

Other stories did the rounds. A weird one was Walter Koenig's  crossover, which doesn't sound like it would work for many obvious reasons, but another one that was also eventually made was a Kirk-meets-Picard crossover idea that only didn't happen because The Next Generation was making too much money. Nothing really took hold. The only thing that kept the idea of a sixth film with the original cast alive was the coincidence of the 25th Anniversary. Had it not been for this, it’s likely that some kind of Star Trek reboot would have happened a lot sooner.

In short, the fact that Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country even exists is something of a miracle. But who could pull off such a miracle? Who could reinvigorate the original movie series one last time? Who had enough clout in Hollywood to cobble together a budget, who had enough fondness for the franchise to shoulder the entire responsibility of the original crew’s One Last Adventure™?

Enter Nicholas Meyer. Again.

At first, Meyer had no idea for a sixth film, but eventually he and Leonard Nimoy came up with the plan that would form the final film: "What if the wall came down in space?" It also solved a few other problems, too, such as Shatner's desire to direct and the oneupmanship clause that still existed. Nimoy had directed two movies, so contractually Shatner would have to direct another one before Nimoy could. Meyer returning to the chair was a situation that was acceptable to all parties. That was fortunate, because it was only due to his connections that the movie got any budget at all.

Star Trek VI, therefore, is much closer in tone to Star Trek II, Meyer's previous Star Trek movie. This is not a bad thing. It also focuses more on the characters than previous installments. This is also not a bad thing. It has a very cinematic conspiracy thriller in space plot, and has a more militaristic tone than previous instalments. This too is not a bad thing.

It's also why I like all the odd numbered films and don't like the even numbered films as much. Bear with me on this.

The problem for me with Star Trek VI, as good a film as it is, is that it isn’t a Star Trek movie. Replace the Enterprise with a submarine and you basically have The Hunt For Red October. Don’t get me wrong, that is an outstanding film, but if you want to make a Cold War submarine thriller, why not just make a Cold War submarine thriller?

The joy of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, or Star Trek III: The Search For Spock, or even The Final Frontier was that no other franchise could do those things. No franchise has that mix of character, philosophy, and science fiction that manages to be optimistic even when going as dark as possible. For me, they are some of the finest science fiction films ever made and I say that not just because they are Star Trek, but because they are good.

The even numbered films always see the problems of the previous entries as being not commercial enough, or not cinematic enough. And every time, appreciating I may be in a minority opinion here, they throw the baby away with the bathwater. I’m not saying they are inherently bad films. The Wrath of Khan is brilliant (although you would be surprised how many Trek fans don’t like it for the reasons I’ve said), Star Trek IV: The oyage Home is a good example of that sort of easy-going '80s fish out of water comedy, and Undiscovered Country is a very good Cold War thriller.

But if Star Trek can only be continued by not being Star Trek, what is the point of Star Trek?

To underline the point that The Undiscovered Country isn't quite Trek, we have the Cliff Eidelman score. Search and you will not find a bad word spoken about it. And it is wonderful music; listen to it on its own and it’s marvellous.

read more: The Big Turning Points in Star Trek History

But as a score to a specific movie? It could be anything at all. The overture is dark, brooding, and could equally be used for a tense chase, a shady backroom deal, or Michael Keaton walking to the Batcave. I enjoy the score, but then again I enjoyed it the first time around when it was composed by James Horner. There will undoubtedly be someone reading this who thought James Horner actually did do the score. Why can’t this franchise get any sort of musical continuity going? Bah.

The other thing that annoys me is that Star Trek VIs allegory of the Cold War is so bludgeoningly obvious it’s almost a reaction to the failure of Star Trek V. Of course, your mileage may vary. It’s also true that Undiscovered Country is as close in spirit to The Original Series than any other film, save The Motion Picture, precisely because it wears the cold war allegory on its sleeve. 

Star Trek Space Explosion

So, the wall comes down in space, but first, space Chernobyl explodes, polluting space Russia. Praxis, a moon of Qo’nos, explodes, contaminating Qo’nos’ upper atmosphere. How does a mine explode that badly that the whole bloody moon explodes? Since this is allegory, we have to assume someone was putting the dilithium into the warp core by hand and forgot how the reactor works (that’s very basically what happened at Chernobyl). What the hell were they mining that could explode that badly?

Anyway, the damage is so bad the Klingons have to divert all their resources away from fun things like looting and pillaging and into boring hippy things like planting trees and voting for Jeremy Corbyn. Space Corbyn being Chancellor Gorkon, played by Star Trek’s most prolific hey-it’s-that-guy David Warner.

Gorkon was meant to be space Lincoln, the great slave-freer and being-shot-in-the-theatre-man. The problem is, Undiscovered Country goes for easy targets and very soft allegory. Had Gorkon really been space Lincoln, he’d have only wanted space peace as a reason to get rid of all the damn Klingons. As it is, this is an allegory in broad strokes. Gorkon is a great man with great ideals, and all other people are bastards, racists, and murderers.

Watch Star Trek VI on Amazon Prime

Kirk is at least two of those, and accused of the third. His reaction to the Klingon plight is a shockingly dark “let them die.” Really, Kirk? The reason is that he never forgave the Klingons for the death of his son, which is understandably human, yet remarkably out of character for Kirk. Surely someone who’s seen as much as Kirk would be able to distinguish between that “Klingon bastard” and the other Klingon bastards.

Hell, he was having Romulan ale with Klingon generals only in the previous film after calling God out. Now he’s suddenly a racist who’ll happily commit genocide by omission. You may see that as a failing of Star Trek V, but I think Kirk should be better than that. After all, being better is what Trek is all about.

Spock, having personally vouched for Kirk (on the pretext of "only Nixon can go to China"), is the architect of this odd peace on the Federation side. While Starfleet Command decides that the Klingons should be allowed to die, or that the Federation should actually go on the offensive of all things, Spock is the usual voice of reason. Peace is logical, cold war is the status quo. One the undiscovered country, the other the horrible pair of underpants you keep because it’s comfortable.

Yet his logic is entirely flawed. Have the envoy of peace be someone the Klingons view as history’s greatest monster? The rogue admiral that lost a WMD and suicide bombed a Bird of Prey that was only trying to protect Klingon sovereignty? Spock, are you really that stupid? That’s not logical, not justifiable, and not even a good idea accidentally. That’s like employing Tony Blair as Middle East peace envoy.

Only Nixon can go to China though. Such a weird justification. The constant quotes, often entirely out of context or just for the sake of having a trailer shot, are less a display of learnedness and wisdom and more like stealing someone’s tweet. It’s something that makes less sense each time you think about it. It’s the antithesis of “what does God need with a starship?” from Star Trek V. The truism rendered false, versus the obvious rendered profound. Cry havoc, and let slip the dogs of war. To be, or not to be. Bang, and the dirt is gone.

Nevertheless, we find Kirk et al dining with the Klingons in charged scene of allegorical stew. The Klingons are at once space Russia, space China and space Hitler, with the peace either the Peace of Paper or something more substantial. Lots of Shakespeare quoted simply for the sake of quoting Shakespeare. A knowledge of history displayed, or at least enough for the small reference pools broad audience the film was aiming for. Reductio ad Hitlerem before the internet made that a thing. Fascinating, but ultimately slightly hollow.

read more: 57 Things You Didn't Know About the Original Crew Star Trek Movies

The Klingons themselves don’t acquit themselves very well, yet we are meant to believe all sides are equally wrong. Azetbur was awfully quick to play the race card for superficial reasons of language, which is far more abhorrent than any faux-pas the inebriated Kirk makes. Heavy handed point making that hasn’t aged well into the age of accusing someone of an -ism just to shut them up.

It’s in the aftermath of this that Gorkon is assassinated, right in the theater. This must be the only time that we see the gravity go offline in a Star Trek film (excluding Into Darkness, which arguably didn’t so much have the gravity going offline as having the gravity stop obeying the laws of gravity), and it’s a fine scene indeed. Masked men, intrigue, inexplicable and never mentioned again pink Klingon blood (changed from red to secure a PG rating). Enough intrigue to sustain the bulk of the film, the ‘conspiracy-thriller-whodunnit-prison-break… in space!’ plot. The identity of the masked men in Starfleet EV suits being the key hook for the rest of the film.

Masked men in Starfleet EV suits

Kirk and McCoy are given a show-trial to demonstrate their guilt (and since the killers were members of the Enterprise crew, Kirk certainly is), which gives us chance for more direct quotes (“don’t wait for the translation!”) and a Worf cameo. There’s also a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it appearance by Klaa, although it’s so brief it’s more even-if-you’re-looking-for-it-you’ll-miss-it appearance, and it’s not actually supposed to be him anyway. Oooh, those pesky Klingons and their backwards ways, with their trials and their due process. Uncivilized bastards!

Anyway, Kirk is found guilty of being a massive racist and sent to Siberia, er, I mean Rura Penthe. Yeah.

The rest of the film writes itself. We have Spock’s protoge Valeris, who definitely isn’t Saavik no sir, being the Spock, Spock being the Kirk and everyone else being the comic relief in a quest to find the killers. They search the whole ship for gravity boots. Then they find them but they’ve been hidden in someone else’s locker. Then they find the dead killers. Predictable filler, and the ‘bottle show’ part of the film, which feels like entirely redressed Next Generation sets and recycled props. After the special effects packed opening, this is where the restricted budget shows. Competent, but unspectacular.

Kirk meanwhile gets back to some semblance of Kirkness by seducing his way out of prison. The shapeshifter Martha, played by Iman, shows them the ropes, then shows them the super-special-secret escape route only she knows. She takes them under her wing. But oh no, she betrays them. The prerequisite mid-movie twist. By the numbers stuff again, but at least we get a scene of Kirk kicking an alien in the balls, and then kissing himself. That’s classic Trek, right there.

read more - Planet of the Titans: The Star Trek Movie You Never Saw

Predictably, the traitor is discovered to be the only member of the bridge crew that isn’t one of the main cast. Come on, she’s got a red collar and everything. They also make it a point to show her as being Spock’s special protege, just to twist the knife.

But then something really, really odd happens. Something actually quite distasteful. Ignoring that Spock actually gets angry and slaps her silly for a bit, he forcibly mind melds with her, to the point she’s in clear agony and everyone is appalled. Spock mind-tortures her. A nasty moment. Even nu-Spock wouldn’t stoop that low, and that guy tried to murder nu-Kirk.

Spock and Martha

Of course, it’s all the Romulans' fault. Yes, there are Starfleet brass involved and the obviously evil General Chang turns out to be evil as well (it also explains why Kirk of all people was sent to make peace). A great space battle, punctuated with Chang devouring entire bits of scenery in a single bite and yelling any quote he can think of. And it’s over in typical Trek fashion, with someone making a speech about ideals and new worlds and obsolescence. Which is the successful heart of the movie.

As much as the film is a by-the-numbers thriller, it still maintains a core idea that defines it as Star Trek. Kirk et al have not changed. They’re still capable, still physically fit even if sagging around the middle, vastly experienced, and unstoppably competent.

read more - How Star Trek: Discovery is Influenced by The Undiscovered Country

But they are useless. The world around them has changed. They are vastly experienced in things irrelevant, competent at tasks that are no longer required. They have outlived their usefulness. A stage of life we must all go through, and one the film handles very well.

As we see, Sulu has already moved on, and soon the Enterprise itself will too. Worlds change even when people don’t is the theme here. Peace is certainly a good change, but that doesn’t mean it won’t catch a hell of a lot of people in the crossfire.

So this is it. The end. Not quite the finest hour but very far from the worst. It's an enjoyable and rewatchable sci-fi allegory. Heavy handed and often predictable, but still with that special something. Perhaps a fitting end to an inconsistent but trailblazing iteration of the franchise.

But the end is not the end. In an absolutely wonderful touch, the cast and characters are given their own send off. A tribute from Captain Sulu, and a family photo for the characters, and then the sign off. Literally.

The sign off at the end is the most wonderful way for the cast to go. The actors who made the franchise going out in style, riding off into the sunset with autographs and fanfares. There would be more adventures for them, but not as the stars of their own story. For that, they entrust the Enterprise to the next generation...

Read and download the Den of Geek NYCC 2019 Special Edition Magazine right here!

Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
Feature Alex Carter
Dec 6, 2019

What Pushed Amazing Spider-Man and Conan Into Higher Content Warning Ratings?

After I was able to work out why Morbius The Living Vampire Omnibus saw its rating jump from to T to Parental Advisory, I was asked to continue my investigations into why two other books made a similar jump. Conan Chronicles Epic Collection TPB: The Battle of Shamla Pass, now having a rating of Mature, and not the previously solicited rating of Parental Advisory. And Amazing Spider-Man By Nick Spencer TPB Vol 6 Absolute Carnage having a rating of Parental Advisory, and not the previously solicited Rating T.

Well, these are the current Marvel Comics ratings.

  • ALL AGES – Appropriate for all ages.
  • T – Appropriate for most readers, but parents are advised that they might want to read before or with younger children.
  • T+ TEENS AND UP – Appropriate for teens 13 and above.
  • PARENTAL ADVISORY – Appropriate for 15 and up. Similar to T+, but featuring more mature themes and/or more graphic imagery. Recommended for teen and adult readers.
  • EXPLICIT CONTENT – 18+ years old.

‘Mature’ is not one of the Marvel’s ratings at all, so I don’t know what Marvel was telling retailers. It is possible they meant Explicit Content, a rare listing from Marvel, currently reserved for Garth Ennis Punisher books, and may be indicative of this content having been created for Dark Horse’s Conan line, which was a little more graphic than Marvel’s current version. And they only just got round to reading it.

But Amazing Spider-Man is an easier answer. Rather than just a collection of the T+ Amazing Spider-Man issues, it also has the bit gorier Red Goblin: Red Death one shot inside it, pushing up the rating…

What Pushed Amazing Spider-Man and Conan Into New Content Warning Ratings?

CONAN CHRONICLES EPIC COLLECTION TP BATTLE SHAMLA PASS
(W) Timothy Truman, More (A) Tomas Giorello (A/CA) More
Conan leaves his trials behind for a new life – as a mercenary! Presenting all-action adaptations of classic Robert E. Howard tales, plus original adventures of everyone’s favorite barbarian! Howard’s “Black Colossus” sees Conan face his bloodiest battle yet, when the mercenaries of Amalric clash with the demonic hordes of Natohk! Then, Conan becomes the leader of Princess Yasmela’s Khorajan army! But another princess wants Conan for herself – the immortal and vampiric Akivasha! The Cimmerian spends a tumultuous time fighting and looting with the Kozaki, a wild group of fellow mercenaries also known as the Free Companions! Plus, Conan faces pirate politics and a centuries-old mystery in an adaptation of Howard’s “Iron Shadows in the Moon”! Collecting CONAN THE CIMMERIAN #8-25. In Shops: Jan 01, 2020 SRP: $44.99

What Pushed Amazing Spider-Man and Conan Into New Content Warning Ratings?

AMAZING SPIDER-MAN BY NICK SPENCER TP VOL 06 ABSOLUTE CARNAG
(W) Nick Spencer (A) Ryan Ottley, Patrick Gleason
Spider-Man’s life has been thrown into upheaval! As Peter deals with the aftershocks from Mary Jane’s recent decision, a super villain rearing their head is not helpful. And nor is…ABSOLUTE CARNAGE! Only Spider-Man stands between Carnage at his scariest and young Dylan Brock. To make matters worse, everyone who has ever worn the Carnage symbiote now has a codex – including Norman Osborn from his time as the Red Goblin! Can Spider-Man save Norman from Carnage? Does he even want to? Plus: The untold stories of the Red Goblin’s rein of madness and mayhem! So grab your greatest goblin gear and rend your raiments red, for the Red Goblin rides again!
Collecting AMAZING SPIDER-MAN (2018) #29-31 and RED GOBLIN: RED DEATH #1. In Shops: Jan 08, 2020 SRP: $17.99

 

The post What Pushed Amazing Spider-Man and Conan Into Higher Content Warning Ratings? appeared first on Bleeding Cool News And Rumors.

Voting Rights Advancement Act: House passes bill to expand voting rights – Vox.com

  1. Voting Rights Advancement Act: House passes bill to expand voting rights  Vox.com
  2. House passes voting rights package aimed at restoring protections  POLITICO
  3. House passes bill meant to restore Voting Rights Act | TheHill  The Hill
  4. House passes bill to restore key parts of Voting Rights Act  Washington Post
  5. House Votes to Bolster Voting Rights Over Near Unanimous Republican Opposition  The New York Times
  6. View full coverage on Google News

‘Death Stranding’ update will fix tiny, hard-to-read text

BIRDS OF PREY: Two Fantabulous New Posters Put The Spotlight On Harley Quinn And Her Girl Gang

Warner Bros. has released two more posters for Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) and these put the spotlight on both the titular anti-hero and the rest of the cast...

Simple experiment explains magnetic resonance

Physicists have designed an experiment to explain the concept of magnetic resonance. A versatile technique employed in chemistry, physics, and materials research, magnetic resonance describes a resonant excitation of electron or atomic nuclei spins residing in a magnetic field by means of electromagnetic waves.

Bernie Sanders proposes $150 billion for public broadband improvements

‘The Irishman’ Drew 13.2 Million Netflix Viewers Over Thanksgiving – The New York Times

  1. ‘The Irishman’ Drew 13.2 Million Netflix Viewers Over Thanksgiving  The New York Times
  2. ‘The Irishman’ Nabs 17.1 Million U.S. Viewers on Netflix in First Five Days, per Nielsen  Variety
  3. The Irishman starring Robert De Niro and Al Pacino movie review  LaineyGossip
  4. ‘The Irishman’ Netflix Debut Drew 2.2M-3.2M Daily U.S. Viewers, Nielsen Says  Deadline
  5. CS Soapbox: Is It Okay to Watch The Irishman on a Phone?  ComingSoon.net
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Rosie O’Donnell Says Barron Trump Controversy Overblown, Slams President

Rosie O'Donnell firmly believes the Stanford Law Professor who name-dropped Barron Trump didn't do anything wrong and hopes the testimony helps impeach the President. We got Rosie and her BFF Ally Sheedy Thursday night outside the "Jagged Little…

Samoa Arrests Anti-Vaccination Activist As Measles Death Toll Rises – NPR

  1. Samoa Arrests Anti-Vaccination Activist As Measles Death Toll Rises  NPR
  2. Leading anti-vaxxer jailed as measles death toll rises to 63 in Samoa  Ars Technica
  3. Anti-vaccine activist arrested amid deadly Samoa measles outbreak  ABC News
  4. Samoa Bans Kids from Church as Measles Outbreak Kills 63  ChristianityToday.com
  5. S. Korea to provide aid to Samoa to help control measles outbreak  ARIRANG NEWS
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Video contradicts border agency’s account of death of ill migrant teen in its custody – NBC News

  1. Video contradicts border agency's account of death of ill migrant teen in its custody  NBC News
  2. Guatemalan boy who died in federal custody was on the floor for hours before anyone found him, video shows  CNN
  3. Viral video shows border wall being scaled at Mexicali. Border Patrol says system 'worked exactly as designed'  USA TODAY
  4. Migrant child who died in Border Patrol custody seen vomiting with a fever in video  WTOP
  5. Migrant Teen Lay for Hours in His Cell Before He Was Found Dead  The New York Times
  6. View full coverage on Google News

Holy Smokes: Security Cam Footage Of An Underground Gas Tank Exploding At Gas Station

Marvel Comics Closes Its New York Office And Moves… East

The word is out. Marvel Comics is closing its New York office. Bleeding Cool scotched the rumours that Marvel Comics would be moving to the West Coast earlier this year, but suggested they may find other offices in New York. And that is just what’s happening. Marvel Comics is closing its offices for two days while it moves one block up… and one block across – a move east by a few hundred metres. No need for a Convergence Band-Aid to cover that, just a couple of days absence in the run-up to Christmas. Nevertheless, comic book creators, give your editors a little break over the next few days. The former offices at 135 W 50th St. NY, NY 11105 was famed for having only one bathroom. I am told that the new offices will have a number. There will, I am sure, be some moving stories from the staff. Here’s the first from Senior Editor, Special Projects at Marvel Entertainment, Jen Grunwald.