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LEGO Ninjago and Where to Find The Latest

4 Jan

The_Island_poster_FIXEDEntire Series Available on Netflix

Anyone wondering where to find the latest LEGO Ninjago episodes will have to check Netflix instead of local network times. “The Island” and “Seabound” were once upon a time considered the same season, but changes have been made. According to the fan updated Wiki, the former is considered a miniseries and latter an official season. Niek van Slagmaat revealed on Twitter, “After the specialised launches like Prime Empire and Seabound, the markets asked for a wave with the classic Ninjago identity. We would not get any story continuing content in order to make sure we could get started on 2HY 2022 as early as possible. Thus, Core was born.”

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Top 12 Animated Films to be Excited For in 2022

4 Jan

Belle (2021 film) - WikipediaBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Every year, I’m more excited about what new animated films are coming. This medium offers more storytelling potential than live-action as the imagination can go wild and the budget to realise it shouldn’t be as expensive as trying to create it in live-action. Not every work has its plot known, and for the sake of not spoiling, I won’t go into a lot of detail unless absolutely necessary.

The following works are organised according to release date from specific to general.

Belle: The Dragon and the Freckled Princess
January 14

This anime about a shy high school girl who finds freedom in virtual reality will certainly speak about today’s obsession with this technology. But as for whether she’s ready depends if she can break free from that digital world and be herself.

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Star Trek: Prodigy is this Franchise’s Shining Light

2 Jan

Star Trek: Prodigy (TV Series 2021– ) - IMDbNickelodeon
Paramount+

Releasing Star Trek: Prodigy in small waves is perhaps the next best thing to creating that serialised vibe past series are known for. The first five episodes set up the dynamics in a new crew of misfits who end up finding an experimental Federation starship–presumably abandoned in the Delta quadrant–and figuring out what to do with it. The hologram that helps them out is a simulacrum of Admiral Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) from Voyager. As far as artificial intelligence goes, she’s willing to ignore the fact they’re not cadets.

This series is Paramount’s answer to Star Wars: Rebels. We have Dal (Brett Gray), a 17-year-old renegade without parents. The first episode focuses on him escaping a prisoner’s life and finding the USS Protostar to hide out in. He is joined by Pog (Jason Mantzoukas), Zero (Angus Imrie), Rok-Tahk (Rylee Alazraqui) and Murf (Dee Bradley Baker), but five is not enough if they are to escape from the clutches of Diviner (John Noble). He is Gwyn’s father (Ella Purnell), the reluctant sixth member, and is a tyrant of the imprisonment colony of Tars Lamora. Sources say this character is modelled after Kahn from the movies, but I think there’s more of an Admiral Thrawn type personality behind him. He’s in search for that Federation ship. As for what he wants to do with it, that’s anybody’s guess until the next batch of episodes is out.

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It’s A DreamWorks Christmas Watch List!

23 Dec

The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper (Short 2005) - IMDbI have to admit, every Holiday season, I’ll either have an Ancient Aliens or DreamWorks Animation Holiday Marathon.

The standard rinse and repeat of particular Christmas classics can get stale, and I thought it’s time to take a look at what’s been added to this studio’s collection of holiday themed shows. This catalogue hasn’t been updated for years, and I’d welcome a new home video release of the past twenty years of animated programming they’ve developed. 

The Madagascar Penguins in a Christmas Caper (2005)

There’s actually two episodes featuring these penguins–Private, Rico, Skipper and Kowalski–attempting to spread holiday cheer. 

With Caper, Private goes on a search in New York to find a present for Ted, a polar bear. But he gets found by a human and the rest of the team has to rescue him. It’s a fairly fun episode, but my preference is with the season two episode “The All Nighter Before Christmas.”

As the zoo prepares for Kidsmas, things go awry when King Julien interferes and Skipper has trouble being Santa. Typical for the series, things get chaotic and it’s up to someone to fix things up.

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Ghost Stories for the Holiday Season (Part One)

15 Dec
Scrooge and the Ghost of Christmas Past fly over the town.

Scrooge and the Ghost of Christmas Past fly over the town.

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

In a 2017 article on Smithsonianmag.com, the plea was made to bring back the ghost story for the Christmas season. Colin Dickey wrote, “Telling ghost stories during winter is a hallowed tradition, a folk custom stretches back centuries, when families would wile away the winter nights with tales of spooks and monsters.”

Another character said, “A sad tale’s best for winter,” Mamilius proclaims in Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale. He added, “I have one. Of sprites and goblins.”

And the titular Jew of Malta in Christopher Marlowe’s play at one point mused, “Now I remember those old women’s words, Who in my wealth would tell me winter’s tales, And speak of spirits and ghosts by night.”

It’s a tradition I’m honouring cinematically. It’s too easy to always include Dickens’ A Christmas Carol and instead of this titular classic, I’m choosing which of the many adaptations I consider worth revisiting. This list is divided into two parts. One which mentions the holiday in the film and perhaps takes place during. The other is broader, using Winter as a metaphor. The movie has to be good. No rotten tomatoes are going to be mentioned here. Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is mentioned far too many times and I’m going for the lesser known works.

The Curse of the Cat People - Wikipedia

Thanks go to Bloody Disgusting for the original list, to which I pruned. I tightened the criteria because a ghost has to be crucial to the tale:

The Curse of the Cat People (1944)

This tale set during the holidays is a sequel to the original, and it’s described by Bleeding Cool as a feel-good tale rather than of pure horror. It’s a sweet coming of age tale which stars Anne Carter as Amy Reed, who befriends the ghost of her father’s first wife whom she’s never been told about.

This work is more fantasy than anything else, but it still contains the essential elements that define a ghost story.

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