"Flash" Writers, Teddy Sears Race Down Burning Questions From "Flash of Two Worlds"
A lot happened in the nearly 17 years between the end of Sailor Moon and the revival last summer with Sailor Moon Crystal: The world ushered in a new millennium, governments rose and fell, the human genome was mapped, Pluto was downgraded to a dwarf planet …
It’s that last development, however, that most concerns the Sailor Soldiers in the latest video from ADHD (Animation Domination High-Def). It turns out there’s a pecking order in this team of magical girls, and now beleaguered Sailor Pluto is at the bottom.
To help dispel the belief “that bats are dangerous villains,” Amy Wray and the TED Ed team turned to an expert on bats — if not on the science, then at least on the symbolism: Batman.
In this breezy and informative animated video, the Dark Knight, Alfred Pennyworth, Jim Gordon and a handful of Gotham’s rogues — Poison Ivy, The Penguin, Two-Face and The Joker — are used to help educate about the benefits of bats to pest control, pollination and even recovering stroke victims.
“Batman might want to keep his identity secret,” the video concludes, “but a great way to help real bats is by continuing to learn about them and spreading the truth that they are real heroes — even if their good deeds are often unseen.”
The 88-second teaser trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens left fans with a lot of questions: “Is John Boyega’s character a Stormtrooper?” “Who’s the shadowy figure with the crazy/impractical lightsaber?” “What’s up with that crazy/impractical lightsaber?” and “D’aw, who’s the cutest droid ever?”
The latter, it turns out, is BB-8 (which Mark Hamill revealed isn’t created with CGI), and he’s already the star of his own fan-made video. Created by Julien Leterrier over four days, the 10-second clip finds the li’l droid speeding across a desert landscape, weaving between and beneath X-Wings. It’s effectively an extension of BB-8’s appearance in the trailer, which, like this video, was all too brief.
For decades, only 25 seconds was thought to exist of Empty Socks, the 1927 Walt Disney short starring Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. However, Agence France-Presse reports a near-complete copy has been discovered at a National Library of Norway facility in Mo i Rana, a small town near the Arctic Circle.
With an original run time of 5 minutes, 30 seconds, Empty Socks is notable as the first Christmas film produced by Disney. In the short, Mickey Mouse predecessor Oswald plays Santa for a group of orphans.
Eighty-six years ago today, Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse made their official debut in “Steamboat Willie,” the 1928 animated short that helped to launch an entertainment empire (their actual first appearance was in a May 1928 test screening of “Plane Crazy”).
To celebrate the occasion, Biography has released a history of Mickey Mouse (sorry, Minnie), highlighting the iconic character’s origins, his 1935 makeover, and his promotional role during World War II.
Disney, meanwhile, sent a rickshaw-driving Mickey on a trip across India for his birthday in a new animated short called “Mickey Mumbai Madness,” which debuted today on Disney Channel India (you can watch it below, along with “Steamboat Willie”).
As great as all of that crime-fighting and Batmobile-driving is going for the Dark Knight, it can be difficult to compete with someone who has his own spaceship.
It’s something that quickly dons on LEGO Batman when he drops in on Wyldstyle in this new video from How It Should Have Ended and Brotherhood Workshop, only to discover that Emmet, the Chris Pratt-voiced Everyman of The LEGO Movie, has changed into the buff, exciting Star-Lord of Guardians of the Galaxy.
“Oh, yeah, I’ve been hitting the gym lately,” Emmet explains. “I’ve come a long way from the days when I hung out at the park for recreation.
I can think of no better way to cap off the week than with the new music video for Swedish rock band Freak Kitchen’s “Freak of the Week,” directed by none other than Juanjo Guarnido, acclaimed illustrator of Blacksad.
A former Disney animator whose credits include Tarzan and The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Guarnido funded the project with a $140,000 Kickstarter campaign. As you can see below, the video features beautiful traditionally animated segments (hand-drawn by Guarnido, who’s also credited as art director, supervising animator and a producer).
Cartoon Brew has more, including details about the upcoming companion art book Freaky Project.
James Farr, who previously mashed up video-game characters with Star Wars, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Ghostbusters (and that’s only for starters), now turns his attention to the Marvel Universe with the animated parody “The Wiivengers,” in which “Nintendo’s mightiest heroes must assemble to defeat the galaxy’s puniest god, and recapture the legendary power of … the NESeract!”
My favorite is easily the Mighty Thorkachu, but Farr’s list is a bit longer: “Nick Kirby (was almost So-Nic Fury), The In-A-vinc-a-ble Iron Mario, Orange Widow, Captain Kakariko, The Mighty Thorkachu, The In-A-cred-a-ble Luigi, Waloki, Kid Hawkarus and … Agent Phil Toadson. Other characters have been saved for later. Maybe.”
OK, Phil Toadson is pretty good, too …
Classic Tom and Jerry cartoons are now accompanied by disclaimers on Amazon Prime and iTunes warning viewers of “ethnic and racial prejudices,” BBC News and TheWrap report. However, the wording is similar to that accompanying some of the DVD collections, indicating the decision was made by Warner Bros., and not by the two online retailers.
“Tom & Jerry shorts may depict some racial and ethnic prejudices that were once commonplace in American society,” the Amazon label reads. “Such depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. While not representing the Warner Bros. view of today’s society, these cartoons are being presented as they were originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming that these prejudices never existed.”
He may be one of the most powerful telepaths on Earth, but it turns out Charles Xavier is kind of a wimp. And judging by this video compiled by Screen Junkie, and a bit of a drama queen to boot.
Using a scene from X-Men: Days of Future Past as a framing device, the website puts together a supercut of some of Professor X’s worst moments from the 1990s X-Men animated series — many of which involve him grabbing his head and screaming “Aaaaaaah!” Although just to mix things up, he does toss in the occasional “No!” and “You … are … driving … me … insane!”
Frankly, after watching this, you may wonder how the X-Men have survived this long.
Branding the popular anime as borderline “pornography,” Indonesia’s television regulator has warned a broadcaster to censor “indecent” images on Crayon Shin-chan or air the series at a later time, when it’s unlikely to be seen by children.
Based on the manga by the late Yoshito Usui, Crayon Shin-chan follows a the adventures of a mischievous 5-year-old who’s prone to inappropriate behavior — he frequently moons other characters — and off-color language. Scantily clad women and risque humor are staples of the series; there’s also the matter of his infamous “Mr. Elephant” dance.
That’s too much for the Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI), a government-sanctioned but independent regulatory body, which on Monday issued the warning to the Jakarta-based RCTI television network.
Remember that Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers Japanese cartoon that Marvel announced in October 2013? No? Well, it’s a series that ties into merchandise created by Bandai — specifically, a game called Bachicombat that has similarities to Pogs (remember Pogs?) and ties into the lore of the show, in which Loki trapped a bunch of Marvel heroes in some S.H.I.E.L.D. tech that ordinary kids have to unlock using a Biocode. Yes, it’s exactly as ridiculous as it sounds.
Anyway, it premiered in Japan in April 2014 and now, according to io9, the Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers is set to introduce the Guardians of the Galaxy. But while this version of the team certainly takes its cue from the hit film, there’s a lot about the design that seems a little off. For example, the element gun/hairdryer that Star-Lord is carrying, or the incredibly cute — and, as io9 notes, super-creepy — expression on Rocket Raccoon’s balloon-like face.
I recently had the pleasure of rewatching The Mechanical Monsters, the 1941 animated Superman short from Fleischer Studios. I viewed it once before in the early ’90s on a cheap video tape that virtually disintegrated after just three uses. However, we’re in the new millennium now, and thanks to the dual magic of public domain and YouTube, the Fleischer cartoons are easily accessible for free in the comfort of your own home.
Do remember the “Beware the Gray Ghost” episode of Batman: The Animated Series? Bruce Wayne watches an old serial starring his childhood hero Simon Trent (voiced, in a stroke of genius, by none other than Adam West). He’s suddenly transformed into a little kid again, with all the cynicism of adulthood melting away. That was me watching the Fleischer Superman cartoons. I’d searched for these videos for analytical purposes, but instead I walked away with words like “Wow!” and “Gee whiz!” popping into my head.
Never let it be said that Homer J. Simpson doesn’t have a social conscience. Also, never let it be said that he passed up an opportunity to stick it to Ned Flanders.
Responding to the viral sensation with impressive speed — this isn’t South Park, you know; animation typically takes time — Fox has released a video of Homer embracing the spirit, if not the actual title, of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. All right, maybe a glass of water isn’t in keeping with the spirit.
However, in grand Simpsons tradition, even that doesn’t turn out well for him …
Although I’ve never watched Kill la Kill, I’ve certainly heard about the popular anime series set in a dystopian school where students don sentient Goku Uniforms that give them superhuman abilities. But now, after watching fast-talking PBS Idea Channel host Mike Rugnetta wade into the anime while wrestling with its fascist themes and possibles warnings about wearable technology, I kind of want to seek it out. (And not for the fan service, I swear.)
This is probably a good place to note that UDON Entertainment announced last month at Comic-Con International that it will publish the Kill la Kill manga next year.