Game Goods 2019: Bob Hoose’s Year-End Picks

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Yes, it’s December and time for Plugged In to wheel out its end-of-the-year “Best Of” lists. And in the gaming category, that’s not an easy call—not because there’s too little to choose from, but too much: I reviewed a pretty heavily populated crowd of fun games this year. But fear not, we’ve culled the crowd […]

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Culture Clips: Tis the Season … for Awards

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netflix awards culture clips

Forget the snowball fights so picturesquely common this time of year. In 2019—at least at Netflix’s movie headquarters—they’ll be pelting each other with Golden Globes. OK, so perhaps we’re being a bit premature. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association hasn’t handed out any actual statuettes just yet, just the nominations. But one thing’s for sure: The […]

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Introducing The Plugged In Show

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plugged In show

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “I wonder if Plugged In is ever going to do a podcast, because it seems like they should,” well, the wait is over. I’m thrilled to announce that we have recently launched The Plugged In Show! Each week, members of the Plugged In team will be joined by author, […]

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Musical Musings 2019: Adam Holz and Kristin Smith’s Year-End Pics

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best of music 2019

“Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togedder today.” Yes, yes, I know, I know. Those famous lines hail from the classic comedy Princess Bride. Nevertheless, they are what brings us “togedder” today, in a roundabout way, as we talk about the best music (both tracks and albums) of 2019. Why, you ask? Well, it turns […]

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Culture Clips: The Existential Crisis of So Many Christmas Movies!

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santa claus

TV’s “25 Days of Christmas” has arrived! And while many a family may be excited to share familiar Christmas classics such as The Santa Clause, Home Alone and Richie Rich’s Christmas Wish on Freeform, there’s also an entirely new lineup of movies coming to cable and streaming platforms. If you count up all the fare […]

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All I Want For Christmas is … a New VeggieTales Episode?

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veggietales

My family’s first encounter with the VeggieTales franchise came waaaaay back in 1996, when my kids were young, Phil Vischer’s veggies were still garden fresh and the technology that brought them to life was still in its infancy, too. “The Toy That Saved Christmas” was the very first episode we ever watched, and  it was […]

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Culture Clips: All I Want for Christmas is Three World Records

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mariah carey culture clips

We haven’t even cooked the Thanksgiving turkey yet, but no matter: Lots of people have moved on to Christmas. Trees are up, tiny lights are twinkling and Santa Claus is already shilling stuff on television. Who is Plugged In to squelch all this Christmas spirit? So let’s kick this edition of Culture Clips off with […]

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What Is a Dopamine Fast, Anyway?

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dopamine

One of the most interesting concepts in economics is the law of diminishing marginal returns. It says, basically, the more we consume of something, the less we enjoy it. Put simply, the second cup of coffee we have in the morning has less “marginal utility” than the first cup. The taste may be exactly the […]

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Fifty Years of Sesame Street and the Internet: Which Hurt My Kids More?

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OK, so this blog’s title is a little click-baity, but it’s still worth thinking about for a bit. The Internet and Sesame Street are both celebrating their golden 50th. They popped into being back in the fall of 1969 (on Oct. 29 and Nov. 10 respectively). Each required years of planning and hard work. Their […]

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Culture Clips: Alone … With Our Screens

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culture clips alone with screens

Plugged In reviewed a strange little video game last week called Death Stranding. Our own Bob Hoose calls it part shooter, part adventure game, part building game and all weird. While dark and bloody, the game has also earned the most nominations this year from the Game Awards (an awards “show” that was watched by […]

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Disney+ Streaming Service: What You Need to Know

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Snow White Disney+

Stand aside all you pesky streaming services because the behemoth of them all has arrived: Disney+. If your kids are Disney fans (or Star Wars fans or Marvel fans), you might have already purchased Disney+, thinking it would be something your kids would love. And chances are they probably do, but this streaming service is […]

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