While animated series Star Wars Resistance is off to a start on Disney Channel and XD, a more live-action spinoff to the massive space opera franchise is taking shape under the helm of show-runner Jon Favreau for its eventual premiere next year on Disney’s very own streaming service, yet unnamed.
The show’s called The Mandalorian, referring to the loose confederation and society of space bounty hunters from which Jango and Boba Fett hail from. This series chronicles the journey of a solitary Mandalorian gunfighter making his way through the Galaxy three years after the events of Return of the Jedi.
Production on the show’s been promising so far, and even original creator George Lucas dropped by on the set on the occasion of Favreau’s 52nd birthday. They posed for photos with one of The Mandalorian’s executive producers; said EP is also directing one of the episodes. In fact, here’s a list of confirmed episode directors for the show so far, along with previous production credits.
- Dave Filoni (Avatar: The Last Airbender; Star Wars: The Clone Wars; Star Wars Rebels)
- Deborah Chow (Marvel’s Jessica Jones)
- Rick Famuyiwa (Dope)
- Bryce Dallas Howard (M83’s “Claudia Lewis” music video; Solemates)
- Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnarok)
Barely even a week after Netflix cancelled one of its Marvel TV shows, Iron Fist, after it aired two seasons, it’s happened again. While the axing of the Finn Jones starrer may have been obviously due to the series’ significantly lower performance compared to the other Marvel Netflix content, that doesn’t quite explain why Luke Cage was also cut out.
Speculation runs rampant as to why these show are dropping like flies, with the main notion being that relations Marvel’s parent company Disney and the streaming giant are increasingly tense with the impending launch of the former’s in-house streaming platform featuring its own Marvel shows; and that’s despite ironclad reassurances from both sides that Marvel on Netflix won’t go away.
With that sobering thought, let’s look back on the legacy of Marvel’s Luke Cage (season 1), starring Mike Colter as the titular character, a bartending vigilante with super strength and bulletproof skin from an experiment. It premiered September 30, 2016, with each episode title taken from songs by Gang Starr, hinting at how entwined to background music the series was.
- Moment of Truth
- Code of the Streets
- Who’s Gonna Take the Weight?
- Step in the Arena
- Just to Get a Rep
- Suckas Need Bodyguards
- Blowin’ Up the Spot
- Take It Personal
- Now You’re Mine
- Soliloquy of Chaos
- You Know My Steez
Disney’s story of Rapunzel has been continuing way past her original 2010 film Tangled, through the form of various media such as the distant finale 2012 short film Tangled Ever After and TV movie Tangled: Before Ever After. But the meat of her ongoing narrative has been Disney Channel’s Tangled: The Series, premiered 2017 and now on its second season.
The show focuses on Rapunzel (Mandy Moore) adjusting to life as Princess of Corona, reconnecting with her parents, and investigating the mystery that is the return of her long (and now unbreakable) hair, with the help of her boyfriend Flynn (Zachary Levi) and her lady-in-waiting aka bodyguard Cassandra (Eden Espinosa). Here’s a list of episodes from the first season run.
- What the Hair? (March 24, 2017)
- Rapunzel’s Enemy (March 31, 2017)
- Fitzherbert, P.I. (April 7, 2017)
- Challenge of the Brave (April 14, 2017)
- Cassandra v. Eugene (April 21, 2017)
- The Return of Strongbow (April 28, 2017)
- In Like Flynn (July 23, 2017)
- Great Expotations (July 30, 2017)
- Under Raps (August 6, 2017)
- One Angry Princess (August 13, 2017)
- Pascal’s Story (August 20, 2017)
- Big Brothers of Corona (October 1, 2017)
- The Wrath of Ruthless Ruth (October 8, 2017)
- Max’s Enemy (October 15, 2017)
- The Way of the Willow (October 22, 2017)
- Queen for a Day (November 19, 2017) – double-length special
- Painter’s Block (November 25, 2017)
- Not in the Mood (December 2, 2017)
- The Quest for Varian (December 9, 2017)
- The Alchemist Return (December 16, 2017)
- Secret of the Sundrop (January 13, 2018) – double-length finale
Season 2 of the series would begin later in June 2018, now retitled Rapunzel’s Tangled Adventure.
If you thought those beautifully illustrated vinyl LPs of several Disney animated film soundtracks from the 1990s was all there was of shopDisney’s nostalgia trip, you haven’t seen anything yet. There’s a whole wave of Mouse House merchandise coming out that throws back towards the decade of the Disney Renaissance.
From clothing to accessories and various knickknacks, shopDisney’s determined to bring Disney fans back to the age of VHS and similar venerable old things with their appropriately themed merchandise. They can be found in Disney branded stores and of course online, and are decently priced for collectors who want to snag more than one item. Here’s a list of choices:
- Oh My Disney Flounder Novelty Cup ($14.95)
- Oh My Disney Ariel Women’s Leggings ($32.95 $24.99)
- A Goofy Movie Retro Lunch Box ($15.95)
- Disney Movie VHS Keychains ($5 each, 4 available designs but you won’t know which until opened!)
- Snow White Poisoned Apple Tumbler ($14.95)
- Beauty and the Beast Drinking Glasses – set of 4 ($19.95)
- Oh My Disney Hercules Mugs – set of 2 ($24.95)
- Aladdin Denim Women’s Jacket ($59.95)
- Hercules Pin Set – 4 pins ($16.95)
- Lion King Desk Clock ($16.95)
- Beauty and the Beast Chip Mug ($22.99) – thankfully not with a broken rim
And that’s merely the beginning. There’s a lot more 90s merchandise along with other eras of fine Disney animation to be found at shopDisney. Got get them now, or enjoy reminiscing at least.
Since its first iteration came out on The Disney Channel in 2006, High School Musical has ballooned into one of the entertainment giant’s surprise hit franchises, with strong recognition even after a long absence of new media. That’s about to change with a High School Musical series set for the Disney streaming service starting next year, but it’s weirdly different.
Entitled High School Musical: The Musical, the 10-episode series is set in the “real world” where the Disney franchise is just a Disney franchise, but it involves an East High School where students work to realize a production of the official High School Musical stage version. The problem is, there’s as much drama in real life as in the story.
With show-runner Oliver Goldstick (Pretty Little Liars) co-executively producing with Tim Federle (Blue Sky and Fox Animation’s Ferdinand), High School Musical: The Musical will center on these new principal characters.
- Ricky – mediocre class clown and boyfriend to Nini; when she breaks off with him to focus on their school production of High School Musical, he joins audition to win her back; to be portrayed by Joshua Bassett (Stuck in the Middle), see above; first role cast
- Nini – formerly a music choir member, she became a newly confident soloist after a stint in summer camp; but with that comes a new attitude that estranges her from Ricky; she also made a new boyfriend from summer camp; raised by two moms; the driving force (performer-wise) of the musical
- E.J. – Nini’s new boyfriend from summer camp, from a family of successful lawyers and a young entrepreneur in his own right; very entitled to Nini and anything concerning her, like the High School Musical production
- Ashlyn – E.J.’s cousin; is looking for purpose and direction, but hides it under an abrasive facade; avid horoscope reader
- Big Red – Ricky’s best friend; surprisingly affected by the Ricky-Nini breakup; finds a job backstage for the school presentation; aspiring wannabe garage band founder but never gets around to doing it
- Gina – Nini’s rival for the top spot in their High School Musical presentation; her ambition to hog the spotlight is born from a lifetime of acting and a stage mother to match
- Vikram – East High color guard captain and assigned student choreographer for their production of High School Musical; notable for treating the drama teacher like a colleague in the same age group; has an ear for professionalism but a hidden phobia of messing up
- Miss Jenn – if Miss Darbus existed in real life, she might be Miss Jenn; fled from a theatre career in NYC but keeps mum about why; sees musicals as the be-all and end-all of existence; a slave-driver like Darbus, but can be compassionate
Yesterday we began our commemoration of the recent cancellation of Marvel Cinematic Universe streaming series Iron Fist on Netflix, by listing the episode titles of its first season. MCU TV followers are well aware that this initial entry of Danny Rand/Iron Fist into the franchise was grossly panned, requiring several retools going into season 2.
But while Iron Fist S2 was slightly better in audience opinion, it still wasn’t quite enough to pump viewer numbers up, leading to Netflix deciding to can the show. Super-powered Kung Fu master with super-strong fist just didn’t seem to click. Danny (Finn Jones) himself ended up being made fun of by his fellow street heroes in The Defenders even.
In any case, here are the episode titles for the final season of Iron Fist. Their titles are taken from the classic Marvel Comics issues. The season aired September 7.
- “The Fury of Iron Fist”
- “The City’s Not for Burning”
- “This Deadly Secret”
- “Target: Iron Fist”
- “Heart of the Dragon”
- “The Dragon Dies at Dawn”
- “Morning of the Mindstorm”
- “Citadel on the Edge of Vengeance”
- “War Without End”
- “A Duel of Iron”
And with that we bid adieu to Iron Fist headlining his own superhero story. Hopefully he’ll keep showing up in the other Marvel Netflix series in the future.
Ask any Disney animated movie fan what their favorite decade of films is and most likely they’ll respond with the 1990s. That time after all was dominated by the “Disney Renaissance” period that saw fantastic stories and new animation techniques that would later become standard in other productions to come.
Let’s not forget the music too. There’s a lot of fine and memorable songs that came out of 90s Disney animated films. And as shopDisney seems to be on a nostalgia trip for that decade, they’re released a series of 90s Disney Classic film soundtracks; and not just any soundtrack, but printed on vinyl LPs.
That’s some mad retro nostalgia that the House of Mouse’s merchandising arm is going for. Yes, these are real vinyl records, fully painted with the main characters of their respective films. The movie soundtracks are:
- Beauty and the Beast
- The Lion King
Yeah, the last one bypassed Pocahontas and The Hunchback of Notre Dame; shop Disney isn’t telling why. But the featured LP soundtracks are still sweet, costing $24.95 each. That’s a tad steep compared to CDs, but they’re a prize catch for 90s Disney fans who still have record players at home.
The magical part of hearing songs being sung a cappella is the wonder, bordering on disbelief, that those melodic musical backing for the lyrical singer is actually vocalization, following a rhythm matching the words sung. There’s plenty enough of a cappella renditions of famous songs online to demonstrate its creativity.
Even Disney songs have been done in a cappella; no surprise considering the sheer number of memorable numbers from their musical animated films. Now, an a cappella singing group called DCappella is about to go on tour to promote their self-titled a cappella album of famous Disney movie songs both classic and contemporary. Just listen!
Pretty cool, huh? They were even kind enough to give their song list for their upcoming album, an official Disney music release for November 16.
- “Tune Up” (Original Song)
- “The World Es Mi Familia” from Coco
- “Friend Like Me” from Aladdin
- “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana
- “Let It Go/Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” from Frozen
- “I Wan’na Be Like You (The Monkey Song)” from The Jungle Book
- “You’ll Be in My Heart” from Tarzan
- “When She Loved Me” from Toy Story 2
- “Trashin’ the Camp” from Tarzan
- “Part of Your World/A Whole New World” from The Little Mermaid and Aladdin
- “Step in Time” from Mary Poppins
- “Immortals” from Big Hero 6
- “Remember Me” from Coco
DCappella will start of their first big tour in January of next year, though tickets will be available for their various concert stops here. Check out their tour dates and locations on the official DCappella website here.
Last week the unthinkable happened, or so it felt. Netflix had announced the cancellation of one of their streaming series set in the Marvel Cinematic Universe – Iron Fist – mere weeks after the debut of its second, and thus final, season.
The MCU in Netflix had always seemed steady, and even though the show about a martial artist with a glowing power-punch was the poorest-performing out of all of them, it was hoped that Daredevil, Jessica Jones and so on could compensate. But no; after a bad season 1 and a minimally improved season 2, that’s all there is for Iron Fist in his own story.
In tribute to the end of this MCU Netflix series, which starred Finn Jones (Game of Thrones), we’ll begin listing the episodes of its two seasons, starting with the first, aired in March 17, 2017. The naming convention for these particular episodes is specific movement sequences in Shaolin Kung Fu.
- Snow Gives Way
- Shadow Hawk Takes Flight
- Rolling Thunder Cannon Punch
- Eight Diagram Dragon Palm
- Under Leaf Pluck Lotus
- Immortal Emerges from Cave
- Felling Tree with Roots
- The Blessing of Many Fractures
- The Mistress of All Agonies
- Black Tiger Steals Heart
- Lead Horse Back to Stable
- Bar the Big Boss
- Dragon Plays with Fire
The next MCU show in sequence on Netflix is the third season of Daredevil with Charlie Cox, starting this October 19.
With the first teaser for the live-action Disney adaptation of their 1993 animated classic Aladdin now available to the public, it seems rather appropriate that we pick up our long pause on covering the song lists for Disney’s home media series Sing Along Songs, with the volume concerning it.
Indeed, this volume which was released in the year Aladdin originally premiered had its introductory spotlight focused on a particular song from the film, the leitmotif of which was prominent in the new live-action trailer. It’s of course, “Friend Like Me” as sung by Robin Williams in character as the Genie.
Even the Disney Sing Along Songs intro was altered slightly by having the end of “A Friend Like Me” overwrite the intro sequence’s ending bars. This was the first time it happened in the home video series, and it won’t be the last. With that said, here’s the song list:
- Friend Like Me (from 1993’s Aladdin)
- Best of Friends (from 1981’s The Fox and the Hound)
- Something There (from 1991’s Beauty and the Beast)
- How Do You Do? (from 1946’s Song of the South)
- Friendship (performed by Mickey, Donald and Goofy)
- In Harmony (from The Little Mermaid TV Series 1992-94)
- Let’s Get Together (from 1961’s The Parent Trap)
- That’s What Friends Are For (from 1967’s The Jungle Book)
- A Whole New World (from Aladdin)
- Reprise conclusion: Friend Like Me