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Samurai Jack started out as a Saturday morning cartoon on cartoon network way back in 2001 and was then canceled in 2004. Despite a raving fan base and critical acclaim, the show then went into a 14-year hiatus, until show head Genndy Tartakovsky was able to revive it through Adult Swim’s revamped Toonami Segment. Since the majority of the viewer base for the original seasons were all younger then it makes sense for the show to take a more adult orientated approach.

The second episode of the new season takes full advantage of the new rating and network. With darker colors and darker themes, we begin to see Jack unravel. Near the beginning of the episode we see Jack decimate a new bug bot with little effort. Shortly after he is confronted by the vicious Daughters of Aku and proceeds to get beaten down like no other opponent has done before. Beaten and battered, Jack tries to escape using the cover of the rain to find a small piece of rubble to hide under. He is then confronted by his darker side that is insisting that he should commit suicide. Telling him that there is no point and no matter the perseverance he shows he will fail. Jack retorts with “I always find a way; they’re just nuts and bolt.” After making a break for a nearby ruined temple, under the pursuit of the Daughters we are treated to a series visual wonders, ranging from a sword fight in the dark to a very dangerous game of hide and seek.

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Running parallel to Jack’s battle with the Daughters of Aku is a similar story about a wolf trying to survive an ambush from 3 much larger tigers. This counterpart to the main story is a marvel of modern television. While it may be perceived as a simple metaphor; it really is much more than that. It perfectly encapsulates the struggle that Jack is going through and was the perfect design choice for this episode. As jack starts to escape out of the temple he is confronted by one last Daughter of Aku. A short battle ensues that ends up with Jack weaponless and out of options, as the Daughter goes for the killing blow jack reverses her attack slitting her throat. This moment alone shows just how far Jack has come as a character. When we see the shock in his eyes when he realizes what he has done, it becomes apparent that Mr. Tartakovsky has something very dark in store for this story of a samurai trying to get home.

Jack then escapes temple through a hallway but not before caving the whole structure in. As Jack slowly drifts down the river, blood in the water around him, all we can do is wait to see where his story goes next. Wherever the story takes us I know that I’m ready for what the creators have in store.

I'm a big guy from a small town who adores the video game industry. It's been my dream since i was very small to work in it and im glad i finally get to do that. My favorite games include MGS, Last of us and God of War 3.

Geek Culture

‘Amazing’ Final Fantasy Movie Inspired The Marvels Director

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Generally, The Marvels is good. It has a 59 on Rotten Tomatoes, which isn’t great, but it’s better than Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania and Disney+’s Secret Invasion. Perhaps director Nia DaCosta’s video game inspirations contributed to that.

The American filmmaker said Square Enix’s Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children influenced her latest film at a press junket with IGN. “It’s just an amazing movie, with great fight scenes and a great ending sequence with the main character being thrown into the sky by all the other characters,” she said.
Despite poor reviews upon release in 2005, Advent Children has become a Final Fantasy cult classic. DaCosta seems to agree that the film is a classic. PlayStation exclusives also influenced the Marvels.

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In the interview, she said she didn’t want the superhero film to look “too much like a video game” but did draw from Sony’s biggest franchises, like The Last of Us and Horizon Zero Dawn. “For me, it was from the best games, the best stories that you get, that sort of inspires me to play, and I think inspires people to watch movies like this,” she said.

Since movies have shaped video games since their inception, it’s interesting to see the dynamic slowly changing. Now that technology and interactive storytelling are more complex, filmmakers are looking to PlayStation for inspiration.

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Geek Culture

Netflix raises prices again after strong subscriber growth

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Netflix reported third-quarter earnings and is doing well. Revenue increased as the company added 9 million subscribers worldwide.

Netflix is also using this opportunity to raise the prices of some of its U.S., U.K., and French plans to differentiate ad-free plans from its entry-level ad-supported plan. New subscribers to the most expensive plan will pay $22.99 per month.

Let’s step back and examine Netflix’s current situation. Netflix cracked down on password sharing in its home market and dozens of others in May. The third quarter is the first full quarter under the new rules, so we can see the effect of password sharing.

The company removed the basic tier in the U.S. and U.K. two months ago to simplify its offering. People must pay a lot to remove Netflix ads.

Reports suggest that many customers are experiencing subscription fatigue and considering canceling some streaming subscriptions, but Netflix still has room for growth, especially with advertising revenue.

The company has 247.15 million subscribers. The number of subscribers increased 8.76 million this quarter. Netflix subscribers haven’t grown that much since Q2 2020, when Covid lockdowns were enforced worldwide.

Netflix earned $3.73 per share on $8.5 billion in revenue this quarter. As ads plan subscribers rise almost 70% quarter-over-quarter, ads are contributing more to the bottom line. Nearly a third of new subscribers use ads.

Netflix shares are up 13.75% pre-market ($393.79 per share) on good news for shareholders. However, subscribers will be unhappy because the company will raise prices for some plans again in three key markets. Full breakdown here.

In the U.S.:

  • Standard with ads: $6.99 per month (no change)
  • Basic (no longer available): $11.99 per month (up from $9.99)
  • Standard: $15.49 per month (no change)
  • Premium (with 4K streaming): $22.99 per month (up from $19.99)

In the U.K.:

  • Standard with ads: £4.99 per month (no change)
  • Basic (no longer available): £7.99 per month (up from £6.99)
  • Standard: £10.99 per month (no change)
  • Premium (with 4K streaming): £17.99 per month (up from £15.99)

In France:

  • Standard with ads: €5.99 per month (no change)
  • Basic (still available in France for now): €10.99 per month (up from €8.99)
  • Standard: €13.49 per month (no change)
  • Premium (with 4K streaming): €19.99 per month (up from €17.99)

New subscriptions start at these prices today. Bills for existing subscribers will rise in the coming weeks.

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Geek Culture

Last of Us HBO Showrunner Quietly Removes Name from Troubled Borderlands Flick

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When your writer—one of Hollywood’s hottest—tries to hide their involvement, it’s a bad sign. The Borderlands film’s original script was written by Craig Mazin (The Last of Us, Chernobyl), who recently asked the WGA to use the pseudonym “Joe Crombie” instead of his name.

We hope this means Mazin considers Joe Abercrombie, Lord Grimdark, the grittiness GOAT, but that theory is unproven. Since Mazin wrote the script in 2015 for Eli Roth to direct, a steady stream of writers has been brought in. Aaron Berg, Chris Bremner, Sam Levinson, Zak Olkewicz, Tony Rettenmaier, Juel Taylor, and Oren Uziel have put around 70 fingers in the honey pot.

The name change likely avoids confusion. Mazin probably doesn’t want to be blamed for Jack Black/Claptrap madness, but he wants to keep his rights.

To clarify, the Borderlands film finished filming in 2021, but Roth was replaced by Tim Miller (Deadpool) in January.

When this surprising star-studded film (Kevin Hart, Jamie Lee Curtis, Cate Blanchet) limps out, what are your expectations? We think this was supposed to coincide with Borderlands 3’s 2019 release, but it’s overshot the mark.

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