Tag Archives: disney+

Wandavision Spoiler review

For 8 weeks, fans stayed up during the middle of the night to watch “WandaVision.” We crashed Disney+ multiple times, and afterwards flocked to Twitter to discuss theories and reactions. Now it’s time to say goodbye to our beloved twilight zone sitcom, and say hello to the Scarlet Witch.

“WandaVision” was not planned to be the start of Phase Four of the MCU, but boy am I glad it did.

Since the very first trailer aired back in February 2020, we all knew this show was going to be a wild and weird ride. For the first couple of episodes they delivered on the weirdness, but the true beauty of the show is its titular characters.

Wanda and Vision have been the more underrated and unknown characters of the MCU. We never really got to know who they are, their relationship and their powers. But this show gave us all of that and more.

“WandaVision” has the best character development in all of the MCU. In nine episodes, I went from not caring about them to nearly crying when they had to say goodbye in the end.

Courtesy of Disney+

Wanda was the real star of the show, and they did beautifully with her story. Through Wanda, we saw the power of love and witnessed the devastation of grief. 

We started this journey with Wanda simply wanting closure, but she couldn’t get it so she created an alternate reality where she could finally be happy with the man she loved. 

In the end, she does realize that this isn’t right, she’s hurting innocent people and she has to let them go. She has to let Vision and her children go. 

But now, she’s okay with that. Wanda has had her extra bit of time to live a life with Vision and to start a family. She can let go now, because she has finally gotten her closure. It’s a beautifully tragic end to Wanda’s story, and they took just the right amount of time to tell it.

Vision also had some amazing character development. For a while, he was really one-note, but here he’s a whole new character. We saw his comedic side, his angry side and his passionate side. 

There was a great line Vision said that encapsulates his journey through the MCU: “At first I was a voice with no body. Then a body, but not human. Now I am memories made real by you.” This was a touching way to look back on Vision’s journey. When we started he was just the A.I.,  J.A.R.V.I.S, and now at the end, he is as close to human as he could ever get.

The writers excelled with this series. They did such a phenomenal job writing these characters, and writing their relationship in a way that felt so personal and heartbreaking. 

There were multiple superhero landings in “WandaVision,” and it’s safe to say they stuck the landing on setting up phase four.

The biggest set up was of course – Scarlet Witch.

Up until now Wanda has just been Wanda Maximoff who can make things move with her mind. But now, she is the feared Scarlet Witch with the capability of rewriting reality on a universal scale.

Agatha Harkness herself said she is more powerful than the Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange. A big thing to note as Wanda will appear in “Doctor Strange: The Multiverse of Madness.”

The series was all about Wanda becoming the Scarlet Witch, and they delivered. The scene where she harnessed all her power and transformed was chilling.

We also saw some set up for Monica Rambeau’s role in Captain Marvel 2 with her powers and the mid-credit scene where she was summoned to space.

The twins may have been erased from reality, but we did hear Billy’s voice while Wanda was astral projecting in the post-credit scene. Perhaps, the twins will make a return as well, and be even more powerful.

Overall, “WandaVision” was an excellent series. Many fan theories were shot down, the most disappointing being Pietro/Peter. We all know the multiverse is coming, so it would have been nice for them to show how Wanda ties to the multiverse. The finale wasn’t that explosive, I would’ve liked to see the trio (Jimmy, Darcy and Monica) take down SWORD maybe to protect Wanda. However, it was cute seeing the twins use their powers one last time. I think they did what they needed to do, which was to round out Wanda and Vision’s story.

A poetic story with a sensational ending, I couldn’t have asked for more, except maybe for Wanda’s happiness but alas.

Disney+ a Year Later — Is It Worth It?

We all waited in anticipation on Nov 11, 2019. As the next day would be the launch of the highly anticipated new streaming service from Hollywood’s biggest studio — Disney+.

I remember vibrating with excitement as I typed in my information to create my account. It reminded me of the excitement of buying tickets to see “Avengers: Endgame,” without the anxiety of seats selling out. To commemorate the event, I made Iron Man my profile picture. But now, it’s been over a year. The excitement has worn off, the hype has gone down, so it’s time to reflect and ask ourselves. Was it worth it?

In short, yes. However, it did take a while for audiences to reap the benefits.

Disney’s pride and joy is their catalog, and it’s the main force driving audiences to their app. All the Pixar classics, throwbacks to Disney Channel favorites and Earth’s mightiest heroes. It’s safe to say you can never run out of things to watch.

That is, if you’re not looking for a new original series. In that department, it’s safe to say that Disney is lacking.

Now we all know about their crown jewel, “The Mandalorian,” the western inspired Star Wars series has been the top dog of Disney+ since it’s premiere last year. There’s also “Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” and “High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.” That’s about it in terms of their major new original series.

“Star Wars: The Clone Wars” barely counts considering it was originally made by Cartoon Network, but was canceled when Disney bought Lucasfilms. Unreleased episodes were put onto Netflix as a new season. Then Disney finally decided to revive the show for its final season to draw fans to the app.

Two new series and a new season isn’t too bad. When Netflix first started they only had a few original series, “House of Cards” being the most notable. Amazon Prime Video has a few gems too, “Fleabag,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” and “The Boys.”

Is Disney only having three new series really that bad? No, but only one of them has expanded to general audiences – “The Mandalorian.” The other two are for more niche audiences or teenagers and young adults. 

In this day and age, new original series are they key to getting audiences to subscribe to a streaming service. One would think Disney would have plans to roll out more original series to compete with  Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

But, Disney could afford to not launch without a vast collection of new content.

They say nostalgia sells, and Disney has nostalgia on lock. 

Many signed up so they could rewatch shows like “Kim Possible,” “That’s So Raven,” and “Hannah Montana.” (Enormous joy ran through me when I heard the “Wizards of Waverly Place” theme song after all these years.)

This was a chance to return to the shows that made our childhood, to be a kid again. For so long we’ve searched for websites that had the entire series or begged Netflix to add the show, but now we have it all in one place. Although I’m still waiting for “American Dragon: Jake Long” to be added.

Millennials aren’t the only ones who benefit. Parents now have a plethora of Disney & Pixar classics to distract the little ones for a few hours.

With the acquisition of 20th Century, audiences can watch icons such as “The Simpsons,” and holiday favorites like “Home Alone.”

The list goes on and on, and not to mention the celebrity collaborations with Beyoncé and Taylor Swift on their projects “Black is King,” and “Folklore: the Long Pond Studio Sessions,” respectively.

Clearly, Disney should not worry that they don’t have enough for audiences to watch. 

If audiences are craving for new content, they do not have to wait much longer.

When President of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige, announced the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s phase four lineup, there were several limited series planned for Disney+.

After delays due to COVID-19, the first one up is “WandaVision” premiering on January 15 2021. Coming afterwards will be “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier,” “Loki,” “She-Hulk”, and “Ms. Marvel,” all of which are scheduled to complete or begin filming in 2021. 

Image courtesy of Marvel

The MCU shows will be a game changer for Disney+, attracting general audiences who love the films and Marvel fans who don’t want to miss a thing.

Signing up for Disney+ on Nov 12 2019 meant waiting a while before we got to the good stuff, but now it’s all about to pay off.

Featured image courtesy of Star Wars: The Clone Wars

“This Is The Way”: “The Mandalorian” Saved George Lucas’s Legacy

Why the Disney+ original show is the best thing to happen to the Star Wars universe since the original trilogy

Source: IMDb

When George Lucas sold his beloved Star Wars franchise to Disney for an absurd amount of money, fans around the world held their breath and braced for the worst. And it happened. “The Force Awakens” was pretty okay. “The Last Jedi” was confusing and unrewarding, but it had porgs. “The Rise of Skywalker” was one of the worst movies I’d ever seen. 

Luckily, Disney hasn’t ruined all Star Wars media. The 2016 film “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” was praised by critics and die-hard Star Wars fans alike. “Solo: A Star Wars Story,” a prequel film following a young Han Solo, received mixed reviews but was praised for featuring Donald Glover as Lando Calrissian. 

Then there came a game-changer: “The Mandalorian.” The Disney+ original show was released in November 2019 and is unequivocally one of the best successes since the Star Wars prequels in the early 2000s. (Of which I am fond of but it’s understandable when they are hated by most audiences.)

“The Mandalorian” has some of the best critical responses the Star Wars universe has seen in years. It has a 92% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and an 82% rating with audiences. The critics’ consensus on Rotten Tomatoes says, “‘The Mandalorian’ is a welcome addition to the ‘Star Wars’ universe that benefits greatly from the cuteness of its cargo.” (Albeit, that was only for the first season and does not include the first three episodes of season two that have been released in 2020.) On IMDb, it has an 8.7 out of 10 possible points.

The Mandalorian and the Child (Source: Empire)

In 2020, the show was nominated for Outstanding Drama Series at the Primetime Emmy Awards. Unfortunately, the show did not win the award but it did bag seven Creative Arts Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Music Composition for a Series and Outstanding Special Visual Effects. 

Not to mention the fact that the series has been praised by Star Wars fans everywhere. One reviewer on Google called “The Mandalorian,” “an excellent and surprisingly intimate portrayal into just one of the trillions of characters populating the Star Wars universe.”

“The Mandalorian” has an exciting and innovative plot. It follows a Mandalorian bounty hunter dedicated to doing his job in the apocalyptic-like period after the fall of the Empire (after “Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi”) and before the rise of the First Order (before “Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens”). 

He is sent to collect a mysterious creature called “The Child” (who we will get to later) and return him to a wealthy client. However, after discovering the Child and growing fond of him, the Mandalorian decides to protect the Child and goes on the run.

The series stars Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, Giancarlo Esposito, Carl Weathers, and Nick Nolte. Obviously, the cast is incredible; and they create such complex and compelling characters.

From left to right: Dave Filoni (director), Carl Weathers, Pedro Pascal, Gina Carano, and Jon Favreau (showrunner) (Source: Allen J. Schaben for Los Angeles Times)

The Mandalorian, colloquially called “Mando” by characters in the show and fans alike, is an especially well-rounded character. Even though we never see his face, you empathize with him and his quest to save the Child. The show has been praised for finally portraying a wholesome, positive parental relationship within the Star Wars universe. (See: Darth Vader and Galen Erso.) 

Mando has an elusive past that becomes more clear as the story goes on. Every decision he makes explores a deeper aspect to him that just makes you want to learn more. Kudos to Pedro Pascal for delivering such a powerful performance, all with a giant helmet on his head.

“The Mandalorian” also does something that, I think, the Star Wars sequels failed to do: it plays on the established world of Star Wars while also expanding the already rich universe.

Fans of Star Wars are familiar with bounty hunters because of Boba Fett and Jenga Fett. “The Mandalorian” delves into the untold world of the Mandalorians, an order of bounty hunters, and the code they follow. It takes us to new worlds, like the planet of Sorgan in the fourth episode of the first season. And, of course, it introduces us to original, often unusual characters with every new episode.

“The Mandalorian” doesn’t have to rely on expired, reused antagonists. (Looking at you, Darth Sidious in “Star Wars: Episode IX – The Rise of Skywalker.”) It is aware of the pre-existing plotlines and adds more to the story.

Then, of course, we get to the best part of the show: Baby Yoda. Although not actually called “Baby Yoda” in the series, the name quickly took when the Child was first introduced and fans quickly deduced that he was of the same species as Jedi Master Yoda. And he’s a baby, even though he is fifty-years-old. Thus, Baby Yoda was born.

The Child AKA Baby Yoda (Source: Forbes)

Baby Yoda took the internet by storm. Soon after his Star Wars debut, there were Baby Yoda songs, memes, artworks, videos, clothing, and fan cams dedicated to the adorable green alien. He is one of the newest additions in Star Wars’ vast array of characters but he quickly became the most beloved and most popular.

The mantra of the Mandalorians is, “This is the way.” When it comes to contemporary Star Wars media, there is only one way. The Mandalorian way.

Season two of “The Mandalorian” is now streaming on Disney+! (If you need to catch up, season one is also still available.)

Disney+, Coming Soon to a TV Near You!

Streaming Services, you know them, you probably have at least one, and they’re all the rage. Missed an episode of your favorite show? Don’t worry it’ll be up on Hulu tomorrow. Want something to binge for 12 consecutive hours? Netflix has tons of highly acclaimed original shows including Stranger Things and Orange is the New Black. Even Amazon Prime has some gems on there. Point is, streaming services are everywhere providing audiences with new and more convenient ways to consume all kinds of content. Ever since Netflix launched their streaming service in 2007, there has been a boom in the amount of platforms available for streaming. A new one is on its way right now, and a big one at that. From the largest studio in Hollywood, it’s Disney+. This is huge, like I said before Disney is the largest studio in Hollywood, and a Disney streaming service sounds like something worth that monthly bill. But first you gotta know what’s even going to be on it, so let’s go to what’s coming to the Disney+.  

Marvel

Image: Marvel

Marvel fans this is what we’ve been waiting for! Avengers: Endgame just concluded the 11 year era with the original six Avengers (Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and Hulk), but the MCU isn’t done yet. They have new installments that will soon go into development, most of them will be films but they have also have new TV series coming to Disney+. A Loki series has been confirmed and Tom Hiddleston is said to return to do some voice over for the series. There will also be two team up shows – WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. The plots for both series have yet to be revealed but the actors will be reprising their roles for the new series.

Along with the new series, you will be able to stream other MCU films – Iron Man 1&3, Thor: The Dark World, and Captain Marvel. Many other MCU titles will be released on the platform within the platform’s first year.

I know what I will be binging during winter break.

Star Wars

Looking to return to a galaxy far far away? Well once November hits, you can! The Mandalorian, directed by Jon Favreau, was one of the first projects announced by Disney and will have featured directors like Taika Waititi and Bryce Dallas Howard. The series will follow the titular character as he goes on a journey throughout the galaxy after the fall of the empire. The platform will also feature a new season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars as well as a prequel series to Rogue One.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens L to R: Finn (John Boyega) and Rey (Daisy Ridley) Ph: Film Frame © 2014 Lucasfilm Ltd. & TM. All Right Reserved..

Just like with the MCU, Disney will also make other Star Wars titles available for streaming. Solo: A Star Wars StoryStar Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, and Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker will be released during the first year of the platform.

Disney & Pixar Animation

Image: Pixar Wiki

Only interested in Disney+ so you can relive your childhood! Well I have some great news for you! Pretty much every title under this banner is coming to Disney+ in November, including some new and exciting things. The Hollywood Reporter reports that Monsters, Inc will be a getting a new series, and original voice actors will be coming back to reprise their role. The story will follow a new mechanic, Tyler Tuskmon, looking to work with Mike and Sully on the Laugh Floor at Monsters, Inc. THR also reports that a villain series called, Book of Enchantment, will be coming to the platform. The series is said to be adapted from a series of books written by Serena Valentino. Disney will also release a new Phineas and Ferb movie.

Disney Channel

Image: E! Online

90s babies it’s time, our favorites from the early Disney Channel days are coming back! The Cheetah GirlsLizzie McGuireKim PossibleThe Proud FamilyThe Suite Life of Zack and Cody, they’re all coming back! Along with many other Disney Channel classics like Hannah MontanaWizards of Wizardly PlaceGood Luck Charlie, and the first two High School Musical films.

Disney Studios

Along with the Disney Channel content and Pixar/Disney Animation content, they will also be releasing their live-action films. Including, The Pirates of the Caribbean series, Chronicles of Narnia 1&2Princess Diaries 1&2, their live-action remakes, and many more. It’s safe to assume that pretty much anything Disney related is coming to this service.

National Geographic

After Disney acquired 21st Century Fox for a cool $70 billion, they obtained the rights to National Geographic, so why not put it on the service. Who doesn’t want to watch some nature in between their Marvel/Star Wars binge? Along with some fun NatGeo titles, they’re bringing a behind the scenes look to Disney’s Animal Kingdom at Disney World Parks and a new nature series narrated by none other than Jeff Goldblum.

Image: National Geographic

National Geographic content doesn’t seem like something one would be excited about compared to everything else coming to the platform, but I think this could be something worthwhile.

But…Is it worth it?

This is quite a lot of content, given Disney owns so much, and they’re quite picky about which streaming services can get the rights to their content. Which makes it hard to find ways to watch their original classics, or more popular titles. Recently Netflix cancelled all of their original Marvel series (DaredevilIron Fist Jessica JonesThe Punisher, and Luke Cage.), and many speculate this is due to Disney not wanting to have their content on another platform (quick reminder for those who have not realized it yet, but Disney owns Marvel Studios).

Now there are currently a decent amount of Disney films on Netflix, but it’s safe to say once this platform is launched, they will all be gone. Pretty much forcing us to get Disney+ if we want to watch a Pixar or Marvel film, but the good thing is – it’s not as expensive as you would think. Disney released the prices and Disney+ will be $6.99/month or $69.99 for the entire year. That’s not a lot of money, for a lot of content. This why I think it’s worth it, $7 and you’re pretty much getting everything Disney, sounds great to me. It’s so much content and for not a lot compared to other streaming services that are upwards of $10-15/month. Luckily Disney can afford to charge less than other services, so it all works out. But we all know the true reason behind the launch of Disney+, someone’s got to compete with Netflix and Disney has decided it’s gonna be them. So can they?

Disney vs. Netflix

Image: CNN

I feel the biggest competition Netflix has with Disney is the family market and their collection of tentpole films with Star Wars and Marvel, but I’m afraid that’s it. If you think about it Netflix has a lot of variety, and Disney just has Disney. Netflix is where creators go to make their outlandish, weird, unique, and diverse content, and it’s where audiences go to see content just like that. Disney has a brand to keep, and that brand is family-friendly, so what you’re going to see on this platform is family-friendly content. Disney is kind of stuck in this family-friendly box and they can’t really venture out of it like how Netflix can. With that being said Disney can for sure work with that brand and make something great which is how they got to where they are, and they have Marvel which is a step up from family-friendly, but not too far out from it. Disney may only have Disney, but Disney is good. What they lack in variety they make up in popularity, especially with titles like Star Wars and Marvel. Variety reported that a study done by Ampere Analysis in the U.K. found that Disney’s content tops content found on Netflix. Disney can grab large audience with their tentpole titles, and Netflix can grab smaller niche audiences with their diverse content. The race between the two might be a really close one, and for sure fun to watch.