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“To Be… Or Not… To Be” — Remembering Christopher Plummer and Other News Around the Net

Soon after I posted my previous “News Around the Net” round-up, the news broke that Christopher Plummer had passed away.  Mr. Plummer was a tremendous talent.  He’s appeared in so many films which I love, including (but by no means limited to) Murder by Decree, 12 Monkeys, Inside Man, Up, and Knives Out.  I loved him best from his portrayal of the villainous Klingon General Chang in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.  Mr. Plummer was magnificent as General Chang; he elevated the entire film with his magnetic and memorable performance.  (Ricardo Montalban’s Khan will always be Trek’s best villain, but Chang is easily the second best.  No one else comes close.)

Aaaargh — Brooklyn Nine-Nine has been cancelled.  (Again!)  I’m very disappointed by this news, as in the past few years the show has grown into one of my very favorite TV comedies.  I wonder how connected this cancellation is to the past year’s social justice movement and anti-police sentiment.  Following the death of George Floyd, I saw a lot of questioning online whether a comedy about police officers could continue to be made.  I’d hoped they would have found a way to continue the show.  I guess that’s not to be.  We will still be getting the planned eighth season, though it will only be 10 episodes long, which is another blow.  Wow, this bums me out.  Click here to read some comments by the show’s cast and crew.

I am absolutely loving WandaVision, and this new trailer for The Falcon and the Winter Soldier has me super-pumped for that next Marvel Disney+ show!

After the longest break in years between new MCU stories, it’s exciting to see Marvel back in force with these great new TV series.

Netflix just announced a new animated TV show spin-off of Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim:

The idea of an animated Pacific Rim series excited me, but that trailer left me cold.  I’m not sure if I’ll be watching.  I thought the first Pacific Rim film was fun, but not as good as I’d hoped.  (Click here for my full review.)  The follow-up film was a big let-down.  I believe there is still great potential in this idea, but none of these projects so far have felt to me like they’ve captured that.

Looks like Gina Carano has talked her way out of involvement in future Star Wars shows, be they The Mandalorian or Rangers of the New Republic.  Wowsers.

Click here to read a fascinating, and somewhat sad, article on Shelley Duvall.  Ms. Duvall was a phenomenally talented actress who appeared in films that include The Shining, Nashville, Annie Hall, Roxanne, and many more great films.  But for the past few decades, she has been almost entirely absent from the public eye, save from a worrisome 2016 Dr. Phil episode in which she appeared to be suffering from a mental illness.

Click here for another sad — albeit incredible — story, about a man who has spent his life collecting every single comic book in which Spider-Man has ever appeared.  He’s now battling cancer and looking to sell his entire collection in order to ensure his family’s financial security after he’s gone.

Chiwetel Ejiofor will be filling David Bowie’s shoes in a new version of The Man who Fell to Earth?  I’m intrigued!  Oh, wait, it’s a new series for CBS All Access (soon to be retitled Paramount+) overseen by Alex Kurtzman (who is primarily responsible for the terrible current wave of Star Trek shows)?  No thanks.

This is a surprise — they’re planning to reboot The 4400!  I can’t imagine I’ll watch a reboot but I have somewhat fond memories of the original show.  I enjoyed it, though I never felt it broke out of middle-of-the-road quality.  I came to the show because I was excited that two great Star Trek writers who I loved were involved.  It was co-created by René Echevarria (who wrote for Next Generation and Deep Space Nine), and the latter seasons were run by Ira Steven Behr (who ran Deep Space Nine).  The 4400 wound up being most notable for me because of the involvement of Mahershala Ali, who was terrific on the show and went on to great stardom.

Click here to purchase my “Maclunkey” Star Wars/Highlander mash-up t-shirt!

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