What We Get—and Lose—by Turning History Into Entertainment

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History, they say, is written by the victors. We might also say that history’s written by the entertainers. That’s not necessarily a bad thing—but it does bring its share of asterisks to the party. Take Hamilton, the smash Broadway hit that became another smash on Disney+ this year. The musical comes with some issues that […]

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Listen to Our Newest Podcast and Hear About Non-Screen Activities to Do With Your Kids

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You can spend too much time with screens. OK, so this isn’t exactly breaking news. Plugged In’s been saying this for years. But with so many of us still semi-sequestered in our homes during this strange, strange time, many of us are beginning to feel the truth of those words. You can only binge so […]

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The New Gaming Consoles Will Be Here Soon. Are You Ready For Them?

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There’s a lot of interest buzzing around about the new, powerful video game consoles coming out this fall from both PlayStation (PS5) and Xbox (Series X). These consoles are supposed to have better speed, better graphics, better everything. And to help boost that excitement (at least for its own PS5), Sony has even gone so […]

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Emmy Noms Confirm: It’s a Streaming World (and Not Too Friendly for Families)

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The Emmys, television’s annual awards derby, just unveiled its 2020 nominations yesterday. (The awards will be handed out Sept. 20.) And when you look over the list, one thing is quite clear: Streaming services currently rule the roost. Oh, sure, traditional television stalwarts still had their day. Perennial Emmy juggernaut HBO pulled down 107 nominations, […]

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In a Sea of Entertainment Delays and Cancellations, ‘The Chosen’ Sails to Season Two

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The Chosen, a television series based on the life of Jesus, has already broken a lot of new entertainment ground. According to its makers, it’s the No. 1 crowdfunded media project in history. And the show eschewed distribution through the world’s streaming giants and instead made itself available on its own stand-alone app. Oh, and […]

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The Virus That Ate the Summer Multiplex

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The coronavirus has ravaged our world for the last six months, forcing unprecedented closures, quarantines and adjustments to our normal ways of living. And that’s been especially true when it comes to movies. The big studios have repeatedly shifted opening dates for summer tentpole movies, each time hoping and believing the next date will really […]

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The Plugged In Show, Episode 35: The Enduring Appeal of War Movies

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War is among the most terrible of human experiences. And yet, the struggles that vast armies and individual soldiers face in combat has been the stuff of epic stories as far back as we have written records. War is horrible, yet we cannot look away from it. Perhaps that helps to explain appeal of war […]

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What Should Parents Know About the Parler App

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So, you’ve been hearing some mixed messages about a new social media platform called Parler and you’re wondering if there’s some connection to an old poem about a certain talkative spider and an innocent fly. In short, the answer is no. (Although, the app’s creators have compared it to a parlor room where an open […]

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Can’t Keep a Good Evil Empire Down

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The empire did indeed strike back: The Disney empire, that is. We’re back again with an encore Movie Monday, but only because the box-office charts are just too interesting to let go without comment. According to Deadline, Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back climbed back to the top of the box-office 40 years after its […]

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The Plugged In Show, Episode 32: Remembering the Good Old Days

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We all know things were better in the past, right? And that’s especially true when it comes to pop culture, we think. Today’s stuff is just full of problems, enough to make us yearn for the kinder, gentler movies, music and TV shows of the past. It’s an inviting idea. But is it actually … […]

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Cyber Criminals Using Family Movies To Target New Victims

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Over the past few months, we’ve seen a significant increase in media consumption across the globe. In an effort to comply with various governments’ stay-at-home orders, people are spending more time online than ever before, virtually connecting with others and keeping up to date on the news. But one of the biggest spikes we’ve seen […]

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The Plugged In Show, Episode 31: Cause and Effect in Entertainment

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Each week on The Plugged In Show, our team (including author and youth culture expert Jonathan McKee) gathers to take a deeper dive into the overlapping realms of entertainment, technology, faith and youth culture—with an eye toward how parents can navigate the issues we find there. In our 31st episode this week, we’re talking about […]

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Words Can Hurt Us. Especially the Bad Ones.

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Sometimes when people ask what I do for a living, I tell them I count profanities in movies. That’s not entirely true, of course, but it is an important part of my job. But why is it important? In a culture that grows ever coarser and, linguistically, less creative, it’s a fair question. And today, […]

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