TV

Hot Take: The Rise of #DisneyPlus, The Fall of #Netflix

These are fascinating times if you’re a fan of entertainment.

Businesses have become more monopolized/consolidated. Many publicist’s deemed the start of the “Streaming Wars” a bit too early when Hulu and Amazon rose up to the occasion.

Now Disney aims to corner the market, particularly in entertainment for children. A big chunk of Netflix’ revenue was based on the rights they had for various Disney properties. I watch Netflix. I just finished a terrific season of Atypical and the first half of the final season of one of Netflix’ greatest shows – BoJack Horseman. My viewing habits aren’t rare, but they are definitely more diverse than the typical streamer.

Every time I would visit my niece over the last few years she’d be enjoying various Netflix series’ like Daniel Tiger, The Magic School Bus and A Series of Unfortunate Events. This was amplified by the catalogue of Disney films and properties they had – which are no more.

I have not purchased Disney Plus yet. The only reason I would is The Mandalorian, which is almost reason enough. I’m trying to be patient and wait for the entire season to be out (almost worth the payment to avoid spoilers), that way I can own the subscription for a month, binge it, then cancel.

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Matt Mentions: #SouthPark Band in China

There is one thing that always draws me back to South Park and that is the unbridled authenticity of co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone.

Have I always agreed with their social/political commentary? Nope, but I don’t take it too seriously when I don’t because, after all, it’s South Park.

In our current world we approach controversy and skeptical news events from the perspective of: “How do we, as a community, feel about this?” Outrage plagues social media, and outrage over that outrage plagues our day-to-day conversations.

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How we became less interested in #GameofThrones with more chaos

This post will actually be void of spoilers. I know, right.

I find myself in several pop-culture conversations daily. The most engaging debates usually involve 3 franchises: Marvel, Star Wars and more recently Game of Thrones.

The truth is, however, the quality of “Game of Thrones” this season has mostly adopted a consensus – great cinematic moments, bad writing/character development and a rushed pace.

I have been less vocal about the quality loss this season, however, because the most significant drop came one season prior. I’ve also been very vocal about show-runners Weiss/Benioff not being particularly skilled at their craft.

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The contradiction of Pokémon

Pokémon The First Movie is all over the place. Mewtwo is vengeful and forcing clones of Pokémon to fight their real-life counterparts.

But after Ash’s brave, yet dramatically stupid, self-sacrifice – Mewtwo has a change of heart. Why is there so much violence in the world? Or as Meowth says “If we focus on what’s the same as opposed to how we are different, well who knows?”

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The Netflix Problem

Netflix is a triple-A production company. They produce a wide array of content from Television series’ to feature films. Watching Netflix grow through the last decade has been fascinating.

As other giants throttle their bandwidth and lobby against the inevitable future of online streaming, they have persevered. For years they’ve developed award-winning TV shows including House of Cards, Orange is the New Black, The Crown, etc.

Their films have also excelled. Mudbound was an Oscar-nominated film and critically, Beasts of No Nation may be the best thing they’ve produced. Now we have Alfonso Cuaron’s Roma. (more…)

Top 10 Television Series’ of 2018

Here are my Top 10 Television Series’ of 2018:

10. It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Season 13)

What a return to form. There are some hiccups in this season, but overall the franchise took a huge leap in incorporating social and political commentary into its usual debauchery. After many lukewarm seasons Rob McElhenney and his gang decided to take more risks this season, and it paid off.

9. Barry (Season 1)

What a bizarre season of television. Interweaving comedy into one of the most tragic characters on television. Bill Hader, Henry Winkler and the rest of the cast bring their A-game not to mention some expert direction from Hiro Murai. “Barry” is tonally unique and hypnotic in its execution.

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How BoJack Horseman Season 5 shines an ugly mirror on itself

I’m back!

Sorry for the layoff. Was recovering from the annual crippling depression incurred by “BoJack Horseman,” Netflix’s greatest show.

Comedy compliments drama and animation is a comfort zone for many. BoJack Horseman takes advantage of this comfort. The show is a comedy, and has some of the funniest gags around, but it comes with a blistering caveat – the show’s relentless dread.

It’s no mystery to my friends and family that I love this show, but it’s a tough sell. No one I know (away from the internet of course) likes this show. They either haven’t seen it, or couldn’t get into it. The complex weaving in between emotions is often jarring, but to me, it feels all too real.

Show-runner Raphael Bob Waksberg and his team have created their opus with season four and five. They never let loose their grip on these complex themes as they introduce ideas of nuance and compliment it with beautiful animation and a hysterical variety of jokes ranging from puns to callbacks.

There are so many great video essays of this show on Youtube though, and I’m not going to be able to add much more to the discussion. I don’t want to dive too much into the show’s philosophies, but I do want to talk about Season 5, specifically the subplot of BoJack starring in a new show.

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