Top 10: Nick Shows for Netflix by Jerry Whitworth
With the debut of Disney+ and the coming of AT&T’s HBO Max, Viacom’s Nickelodeon and Netflix have formalized their working arrangement into a multi-year alliance. Formerly, Nickelodeon offered a streaming channel for its content on AT&T’s service VRV called NickSplat where for $5.99 a month, you could stream shows like All That, Angry Beavers, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, CatDog, Doug, Kenan & Kel, and Rocket Power. Also, Amazon Prime has been home to shows like SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Blue’s Clues, Backyardigans, Victorious, Bubble Guppies, Fairly OddParents, and iCarly since 2013 and Philo has been host to Nickelodeon’s content for some years. The while, Netflix has offered virtually every season of Power Rangers (which Nickelodeon has the broadcast rights for in the United States) and Nickelodeon films Rocko’s Modern Life: Static Cling (2019) and Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus (2019). Further, a live action series based on Avatar: The Last Airbender and animated films based on Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and The Loud House are in development at the service. But as part of this extended partnership, more new content based on Nickelodeon’s catalog of intellectual property is being made for Netflix including a spin-off based on SpongeBob SquarePants‘ Squidward. It’s unknown what effect the likely merger of Viacom and CBS (with its CBS All Access service) in the future will inevitably have in this deal, but for now, lets examine what could be some of the content coming to Netflix.
From Game to Screen: Castlevania – Season Two by Jerry Whitworth
Roughly one week removed from San Diego Comic-Con International and news continues to dribble out. The latest tidbit to rock fandom is the trailer for the second season of Castlevania. Roughly adapting Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (1989), the story follows Count Dracula trying to sink the world in darkness and four heroes rising up to stop him: vampire killer Trevor Belmont, young witch Sypha Belnades, dhampir Alucard, and thief Grant Danasty. The first prequel produced for the Castlevania series, Dracula’s Curse is situated early in the property’s timeline which provides a wealth of material for the series moving forward. Its second season dropping all at once on October 26th on Netflix, the second season will be twice as long as the first at eight episodes. Lets take a look at some characters revealed in the new trailer.
Power Rangers Comes to Toys That Made Us by Jerry Whitworth
When the documentary series The Toys That Made Us about toy brands and properties was renewed by Netflix, speculation immediately arose about what future episodes would emerge. Fans did not have to wait long as the first four episodes were announced at San Diego Comic-Con International and the Nerdfect Strangers accurately predicted at least three of those selections. It was revealed the next four episodes will focus on Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, My Little Pony, wrestling, and Power Rangers. Having already gone into detail with the former three previously (although, the ambiguous descriptor for wrestling has lead to speculation the Kinnikuman keshi, or Kinkeshi, better known in America as M.U.S.C.L.E., maybe included), we’re going to discuss the history of Power Rangers and its toys.
The Toys That Made Us: Interview with Brian Volk-Weiss by Jerry Whitworth
An eight episode series whose first half debuted in late 2017 and second half May of this year, The Toys That Made Us is a Netflix-exclusive documentary series on the history of popular toylines and properties. Thus far covering Star Wars, Barbie, Masters of the Universe, GI Joe, Star Trek, Transformers, Lego, and Hello Kitty, TTMU was renewed shortly after its second half went live. Nerdfect Strangers had the opportunity to interview Brian Volk-Weiss, creator and executive producer for TTMU, about the first eight episodes and the series’ future.
Review – Luke Cage: Season Two by Jerry Whitworth
Last week, Netflix released the second season for Luke Cage, the third entry in the streaming service’s Defenders series that includes Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and The Punisher. Following the events of last season where Cage (Mike Colter) was drawn into conflict with Cornell “Cottonmouth” Stokes (Mahershala Ali) and his cousin “Black” Mariah Dillard (Alfre Woodard) only to be hunted by his crazed half-brother Willis “Diamondback” Stryker (Erik LaRay Harvey), the eponymous series’ hero must combat John “Bushmaster” McIver (Mustafa Shakir) who seeks revenge against Mariah for the crimes of her kin. The first season of the show was critically acclaimed for its exploration of challenging topics of race in America, an integrated soundtrack making the piece something of a visual album, and the remarkable performances of its cast (in particular, its actresses). Lets see if the second season matches up. Fair warning: there will be SPOILERS.
Top 10: Toys for TTMU Season Three by Jerry Whitworth
On May 25th, the second season of The Toys That Made Us debuted on Netflix bringing an end to the eight-part documentary series about toylines that helped define the generations that grew up with them. Covering Star Wars, Barbie, He-Man, G.I. Joe, Star Trek, Transformers, Lego, and Hello Kitty, TTMU went over each toyline’s broad history while touching base with the effect they had on the people who collected them, at times weaving in celebrities whose lives’ were impacted by the toys. Stated within the opening sequence of each episode, TTMU was created as an eight-episode series however the concept could easily be expanded much further. Should Netflix order future seasons of TTMU, lets see what toys could be featured next.
If I’m being honest, I have to admit I was not a fan of the Young Justice comic series. First the concept of a second generation of Teen Titans didn’t sit well with me. I wanted a Teen Titans series, why not just give me that? The creators were iffy for me. Peter David is one of those writers who runs hot or cold for me, I either love him or hate him. And artist Todd Nauck is a great guy who I’ve interviewed a couple times. I love his Wildguard, but again, if I’m being honest, I just wasn’t into his style back then.