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WrestleMania 36 Kicks Off With a Bizarre, Cinematic Cold Open

WWE may have just released the most bizarre opener in WrestleMania history. There were wrestlers dressed as pirates, a montage of wild horses, line dancing and some kind of giant crustacean.

The video began with a cinematic cold open before eventually going into its regular music package. But the first few minutes, however, seemed like something out of Land of the Lost.

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At one point, the video goes from one WWE star to another while different backgrounds play behind them. A voice that sounds like a pirate narrates, “rewinding” the clip and eventually showing the wrestlers battling skeletons and the crab-like creature.

In terms of weirdness, the wacky opener fits right in line with this year’s WrestleMania. The show doesn’t have an audience, there’s no giant entrance ramp, no stadium and several big names are sitting out.

WWE officials had to move the event from Tampa to Orlando due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and they’ve been filming their shows at the Performance Center ever since.

WrestleMania 36 will stream on the WWE Network and be available on PPV April 4 and April 5 at 7 P.M. E.T.

KEEP READING: Undertaker Apologizes for Stealing Jericho’s Catchphrase – By Stealing R-Truth’s

WWE kicked off the Showcase of the Immortals with what was perhaps the weirdest opening in wrestling history.

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Pokémon: Exploring What Happens Inside a Pokéball | CBR

Pokémon can’t really be “Pocket Monsters” unless they can fit into your pocket. Enter the Pokéball, a convenient invention that can contain any and all Pokémon within it. There are various iterations of the Pokéball, and it’s possible to create them from nuts and other organic material. However, what actually happens inside of the Pokéball remains a mystery.

There are numerous theories as to what happens inside a Pokéball. Through the scant official data available from interviews and in-game information, we can deduce what the environment inside a Pokéball is like and what this all means in the Pokémon World.

RELATED: Pokémon Sword & Shield Expansion Pass Includes G-Max Moves & More

Very little is actually known about Pokéballs. When the ball hits a Pokémon, they are converted into a form of energy, and are sent flying inside of it — at least, that’s the case in the anime. In the games, Pokémon visibly shrink into the balls. Either way, they are sucked inside of the ball. All of this indicates that the ball is able to convert creatures to fit inside itself.

In the Pokémon anime, there’s nothing inside the ball but its mechanical insides, and creatures are rarely shown inside Pokéballs. In one episode, Misty’s Psyduck captures himself inside one of her Pokéballs, though that might only be a stylistic representation of what can happen in there.

What is known for sure is that Pokemon are converted into energy and contained inside the ball. The Pokémon world has proven that it can turn physical matter into energy for transportation, as seen with both the Pokémon Transfer System, how Pokéballs materialize in a player’s Box when they have over six Pokémon on their person and how the psychic move “Teleport” affects Pokémon. Thus, Pokémon are seemingly turned into energy inside the Pokéball and are not physically shrunk down to size.

While very little has been said officially about what Pokéballs are like on the inside, there are some tidbits of information. Most notably, Pokémon Sun and Moon producer Junichi Masuda explained in an interview what he felt the inside of a Pokéball was like: “I think it’s safe to say that it’s very comfortable inside inside of a Pokeball, it’s a very comfortable environment. Maybe the equivalent of a high-end suite room in a fancy hotel.”

This seems to indicate that the space inside a Pokéball is artificially generated to be appealing to each Pokémon. Therefore, within the Pokéball, there’s essentially a virtual reality created for the Pokémon, designed as a perfect environment for the given species. These ecosystems are designed for comfort, creating a perfect, private space for its inhabitants.

RELATED: My Hero Academia Explores Nine’s Motivation in Heroes Rising With One-Shot

However, that doesn’t mean every Pokémon will like that environment. Ash’s Pikachu and the one in Pokémon Yellow hate being contained in a Pokéball, and many Pokémon in-game seem eager to be outside of a Pokéball so they can interact with human beings. Because Pokéballs are designed to create a comfortable environment, it seems Pokémon like Pikachu hate being inside a Pokéball because of how isolating they are. It is unknown if the Pokémon can interact with other Pokémon contained inside Pokéballs, though there are spaces like the PokéPelago for PC-bound Pokémon. On top of that, both in the games and anime, trainers regularly let their creatures interact with one another outside of the Pokéballs, as seen in Pokémon  Sword and Shield‘s Pokémon Camp feature, where Pokémon freely walk around and have fun with one another.

So, we can assume that, while Pokéballs aren’t uncomfortable, they’re not exactly meant for long-term containment.

KEEP READING: Sailor Moon: Every Sailor Moon Senshi & What Their Pokémon Would Be

Pokémon has featured Pokéballs for as long as the franchise has been around. Here's what happens inside Pokéballs and why some Pokémon hate them.

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Avatar: The Last Airbender: Which Bender You Are Based On Your Zodiac

The connection between the Earth’s elements and the zodiac signs of the year are hinged on each other. The beloved world of Avatar: The Last Airbender series has peaked fan’s interests in considering their own personal Earth element for several years. Avid viewers of the show have made the connection between their zodiac sign aligning with which element would be plausible.

RELATED: Avatar: The Last Airbender – Whatever Happened to Azula?

By connecting personality traits, virtues, and characteristics of each Zodiac sign, we can hypothesize which Earth elements from the popular franchise fit all 12. Here are how each zodiac sign relates to each Earth element within Avatar: The Last Airbender.

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12 Aries (March 21-April 19) – Fire

The personality traits of an Aries are that similar to fire due to their spunky personalities. Within the show, we know that those who practice the fire element are hot-headed and quick to the touch. Aries personalities are just that; quick to voice their opinion.

RELATED: Monogatari: The 10 Strongest Oddities, Ranked

Though fiery, Aries personalities are mostly misunderstood (just like some of the fire element characters in Avatar: The Last Airbender.

11 Taurus (April 20 – May 20) – Earth

The bull has always been known throughout history to be connected to Earth so it makes sense that a Taurus would be an Earth bender. The bull is grounded and is not moved easily. That being said, when in motion, it doesn’t stop to reach its goal.

Within Avatar: The Last Airbender, Earth benders struggle to move rocks but are determined to complete their goals. All of these traits make a Taurus a perfect Earth bender.

10 Gemini (May 21-June 20) – Air

Just like Avatar: The Last Airbender‘s main character Aang, Gemini exhibits traits closest to that of air bending. Aang took a while to open up to his friends in the series which emulates a Gemini perfectly.

RELATED: 10 Avatar: The Last Airbender Characters That Deserve Spinoff Series

It’s hard to get to know a Gemini because they want to focus on expressing their creativity along with being open-minded. That being said, it’s difficult for them to open up which makes for the perfect air bender.

9 Cancer ( June 21 – July 22) – Water

During the summer months everybody wants to navigate towards the water. Those born under the Cancer sign don’t have to look far because water bending is within them. Cancer signs exhibit emotional depth coupled with a caring nature.

As seen in Avatar: The Last Airbender, water benders have a deep understanding of nature and the feelings of those around them.

8 Leo (July 23- August 22) – Fire

Leo’s have confidence and pursue every situation with determination. Some may find this to be self-absorbed but those who fall into the fire category understand that drive for success is everything.

A Leo is bold in that others can rely on them, but tend to be unfiltered and loud for this reason. Others have confidence they will get the job done but don’t like to socialize with them along the way due to their prowess.

7 Virgo (August 23- September 22) – Earth

Earth bender’s within Avatar: The Last Airbender has a particular way of doing things and doesn’t like to stride away from their path. Earth benders are very much in tune with the Earth and contemplate every situation extensively before acting.

Virgo’s may be slow to get the job done at times, but it is precise and makes for a far greater outcome.

6 Libra (September 23- October 22) – Air

A typical trait of air benders is that they need to find balance in the Earth’s atmosphere. A Libra’s central function is to find balance wherever they are. In finding peace, they find happiness and the best traits of others along in the process.

By maintaining balance, Libra have the ability to rid the world of injustices.

5 Scorpio (October 23- November 21) – Water

Scorpio’s come off as mysterious and allusive but underneath it all have the innate desire to protect others. Water benders in Avatar: The Last Airbender show signs to that closest of a Scorpio due to their passionate nature.

However, the characters do show a lack of control at times which represents a Scorpio perfectly. Scorpios are a little on the wild side and can be seen as a problem but in the end, show passionate love and care.

4 Sagittarius (November 22 – December 21) – Fire

Quick to react and easily angered, the Sagittarius sign shows traits to that closest of a fire bender. They are extremely outgoing and love a good adventure – as seen with fire benders in Avatar: The Last Airbender. However, their thoughts and feelings are complex which makes them not easily understood.

The exploration never comes to an end for a Sagittarius. As a fire bender holds wonder, so does this sign in every way.

3 Capricorn dates (December 22 – January 19) – Earth

Capricorn’s love stability and thrive in structure. Their self-image means a lot which makes for a rock-solid personality. Fierce and determined, Capricorn’s most resembles that of an Earth bender who is grounded with the Earth.

They make great friends and acquaintances, but are independent and at times stubborn. In the show, several Earth bending characters show these traits throughout the series and attaching the Earth bending lifestyle to a Capricorn fits perfectly.

2 Aquarius (January 20 – February 18) – Air

Even though an Aquarius sounds like it would fall under the category of water, the only similarity lies within the name. An Aquarius loves to learn and prospers from intelligence. Like Aang who’s always learning, an Aquarius thrives on knowledge and holds curiosity close to their heart.

Every experience is a learning experience so they don’t spend too much time wrapped in a negative mentality. Their positive nature brings success to them and they appreciate every quality within the world.

1 Pisces (February 19 – March 20) – Water

Water benders make great healers and teachers. The water bender is known to be balanced and caring. A Pisces is exactly that. They change with their friends and their environment around them which makes for a better world.

They’re creative in how they learn and like to teach others what they know as a learning tactic. Like water benders, Pisces personalities are social and make for a great friend. They are mysterious but in a positive way. Not everybody needs to learn about their intentions but it usually makes for a positive outcome.

NEXT: Which My Hero Academia Character Are You Based On Your Zodiac Sign?

With horoscopes defining who you are, we thought it would be cool to make a list on your bending powers according to your zodiac.

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Half-Life: Gordon Freeman’s Crowbar Is Gaming's Greatest Melee Weapon

There are plenty of worthy and iconic melee weapons in the pantheon of video games — Link’s Master Sword, the Assassins’ Hidden Blade, Sora’s Keyblade, Cloud’s Buster Sword. But there is only one weapon, one instrument of doom, that, when placed in the hands of a certain MIT-educated Theoretical Physicist, rises above the others to true greatness: Gordon Freeman’s crowbar. The release of Half-Life: Alyx offers a perfect excuse to take a look back and celebrate the Half-Life franchise’s most enduring weapon.

Alyx does not wield the crowbar herself in the new VR game, though that’s not to say it isn’t mentioned at all. The crowbar is associated heavily with the series’ primary protagonist, Gordon Freeman, and both are emblematic of the franchise as a whole. For most gamers, a mention of Half-Life conjures the image of a bespectacled, goatee-fancying scientist with a crowbar in hand, combatting alien headcrabs with his weapon of choice.

RELATED: What to Expect From Half-Life 3

The original Half-Life was released for PC on November 19, 1998 by fledgling studio Valve. It proceeded to change the landscape of video games forever by wrapping revolutionary mechanics and graphics in an exhilarating sci-fi/horror shooter. Players found themselves in the role of a Black Mesa researcher, the ever-silent Gordon Freeman. He pushes a cart, presses a button and a lot of really bad things happen.

As aliens pour in from tears in reality and the government sends in troops to cover the whole thing up with bullets, it’s up to Gordon and other surviving Black Mesa employees to save the world. It’s a lot for one nerd in a fancy hazmat suit to handle. But, thankfully, after surviving the initial accident, Freeman soon finds the instrument of his vengeance laying innocuously enough on the floor.

The crowbar was fun, effective and more than simply a weapon. Half-Life introduced new interactive environment and physic effects, and the crowbar was used as an implement to solve the many puzzles that highlighted these features. Beyond being a simple and satisfying weapon to play with, its iconic status is tied to the milestone in gaming history that Half-Life represents.

Even within the story of Half-Life, Gordon is constantly associated with the crowbar. Every new installment has quickly reunited Freeman with his weapon, usually with a funny comment from an NPC to highlight the event. In certain parts of Half-Life 2, if Gordon is killed you can hear the enemy say, “Somebody… Take his crowbar.”

Related: Half-Life: What You Should Know Before Alyx

Its beloved status can be felt across platform and genre, with many developers adding homages to the mighty crowbar. In Halo 3, Bungie left a crowbar lying in the multiplayer map, Sandtrap. This is no coincidence, as “Sandtraps” is also the title Half-Life 2’s eighth chapter. GTA: San Andreas has a familiar-looking crowbar resting on a table in the Area 69 government facility. If you use a crowbar to break open a crate in Scribblenauts Unlimited, you’ll earn an item called “Free Man!”

At the beginning of BioShock, Atlas tells the player to look for “a crowbar or something,” instead finding a pipe wrench. The 2013 Sim City featured a build-able factory called “Freeman Crowbar Mfg.” Valve even referenced it in one of their own games, Left 4 Dead 2, where the crowbar is one of the available weapons. The game even features a moment where the playable character Louis declares, “Man, I feel like I’m Gordon Freeman!”

Half-Life’s crowbar was an instant classic that has endured in gamers’ hearts for nearly 22 years, and it’s brief appearance in Alyx feels appropriate. As cool as it would have been to see Alyx use it herself, the crowbar and Gordon Freeman have become synonymous with one another. Much like Chell and her portal gun, another revolutionary video game weapon from Valve, it would be weird to show someone else wielding the signature weapon.

Half-Life: Alyx is now available on Steam.

KEEP READING: Why We Want Portal 3 – and Why We Don’t Need It

Valve's Half-Life: Alyx, doesn't feature series protagonist Gordon Freeman's crowbar, a weapon that has become synonymous with the character.

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My Hero Academia: The New Top 10 Greatest Heroes Explained | CBR

Warning: spoilers for My Hero Academia Episode 87, “Japanese Hero Billboard Chart,” now available for streaming on Funimation, Crunchyroll, Hulu and VRV.

With All Might gone and the year almost up, a new ranking of society’s top heroes — or the Japanese Hero Billboard Chart — has been established. These are the heroes who have been ranked among the top based on heroes defeated, civilian popularity and by civilians saved. However, among the Top 10, you’ll find very few characters who have been previously featured in prominent roles.

The question remains: why are so few of the Top 10 heroes characters we know? What about the heroes established in the series makes them less likely to rank up on the Top 10, and what about those heroes who stand above the rest makes them more accomplished or better suited for the greater population of heroes?

The rankings are as follows: At number 10 is Ryukyu. Nine is Yoroi Musha, eight is Wash, seven is Kamui Woods, six is Crust, five is Mirko, four is Edgeshot, three is Best Jeanist, two is Hawks, and one is Endeavor. Of those names, only a few are established characters in the anime thus far.

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Ryukyu was Uraraka and Asui’s mentors in the work-study program. Kamui Woods, alongside Mt. Lady, has appeared since the start of the series. Edgeshot fought against All For One back in Season 3. Best Jeanist was the hero who Bakugo worked for during his internship following the Sports Festival. However, of all of them, the only character we as audiences have grown to know and understand in any meaningful way is Endeavor.

Yoroi Musha, Wash, Crust and Mirko have never appeared in the anime before in any meaningful fashion. Sure, Mirko had her silhouette teased previously a few episodes prior, but for the rest, this is their first appearance. Yoroi Musha is clearly an old, honor-bound hero who believes any rank below the Top 3 is barely worth mentioning. Crust is a shield hero and clear warrior. Mirko is a powerful melee fighter with rabbit-themed abilities. Wash is a washing machine with arms.

In terms of the chronology of the series, we’ve only just met Hawks. For those who saw My Hero Academia: Heroes Rising, Hawks is the hero who primarily investigates Nine and his crew while Class 1-A are off on their island, never expecting a supervillain with multiple quirks to attack. However, it’s clear from the get-go that Hawks is an elite hero, one of the youngest to ever make it to the Top 10 Ranked Heroes around, forming his own Hero Agency at the age of 18. He’s already making a place for himself among heroes a few minutes into the series.

For many fans of shonen anime accustomed to seeing familiar faces rank among the top-ranked characters, the lack of familiar faces will come as a huge shock. Mt. Lady even laments being ranked only 23rd, far behind her partner, Kamui Woods. However, we don’t know where any of the teachers at U.A. rank. This seems like a massive oversight, considering Eraserhead proved instrumental when fighting both the League of Villains and Overhaul’s Shie Hassaikai.

RELATED: One Piece Vs. My Hero Academia: Are Devil Fruits or Quirks Weirder Powers?

However, it makes sense that not a single U.A. Teacher broke the top 10 list. They are at a disadvantage in every category. The ranking is dependent on civilians saved, villains stopped and popularity. The teachers have jobs that prevent them from going out to save the world, with them only helping in emergency situations. This means that other heroes have far more time on their hands to stop crime and protect the innocent.

However, where they all really fail is when you take into account how unpopular these heroes are in the society they live in. While U.A. did survive All For One’s public war against their credibility, faith in them was shaken. It’s hard to forget how Midoriya’s mom almost refused to let her son return to them because she had little to no faith that they’d be able to protect the next generation of heroes. Even more so, as proven in this episode, with the republication and popularity of the villain Destro’s autobiography, that faith in the society U.A. represents is shaken and unstable. There’s no way the U.A. teachers are popular enough to rank high at all.

All of this is perfectly illustrated in the Wild, Wild Pussycats, who rank collectively at 411 due to them being unable to fight crime while recovering — and considering one of them had their Quirk permanently stolen by All For One. They ranked in the three-digits only due to their popularity. The teachers of U.A. had just as few opportunities to use their skills to fight crime since the defeat of All For One, and worst of all, lack the Wild, Wild Pussycats’ popularity.

So the U.A. Teachers stood little chance of ranking, but there are many others who are missing from the top ranks that had far more opportunities to rank than others. Heroes like Fat Gum, Gang Orca, and Rock Lock were all-powerful and important enough for Sir Nighteye to recruit them into the Task Force to take down Overhaul. None of them made the Top 10, however. In fact, other than Ryukyu, none of the Top 10 Heroes stopped Overhaul and his quirk-erasing drug. Why is that?

RELATED: My Hero Academia Features a Cameo from ANOTHER Shonen Manga Hero

The answer is, simply, that it’s hard to calculate how many potential people were saved when Overhaul was defeated. While Fat Gum and his Hero Agency are responsible for defeating five of Overhaul’s Eight Bullets, Ryukyu captured far more individual yakuza members. Even though Fat Gum helped take down the strongest members of Overhaul’s forces, Ryukyu captured more in number.

On top of that, we just don’t know what the other heroes have done before this. After all, perhaps Wash with his Laundry-centric quirk saved so many people from disasters that he had to rank above Fat Gum. Even though the heroes who have been introduced on the series thus far matter to the audience, they don’t necessarily matter all that much to the people living in the show’s world. This key distinction is what keeps My Hero Academia from ever feeling too predictable.

KEEP READING: My Hero Academia: Mei’s Most Useful “Babies” Ranked

My Hero Academia has introduced its new Top 10 Greatest Heroes. Who are they and which of our favorites are missing?

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Star Wars: A Fan Theory Suggests The Clone Wars Is Republic Propaganda

Star Wars: The Clone Wars, which is currently in the midst of its final season exclusively on Disney+, isn’t known for its morally complex heroes and villains. The series is told from the perspective of members of the Jedi council protecting the Republic, Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Ahsoka Tano. Nearly all of the villains featured in Star Wars: The Clone Wars are one-dimensional, even though the Republic was deeply flawed and served as a precursor for the Galactic Empire. A new fan theory on Reddit makes the convincing case that Star Wars: The Clone Wars is essentially Republic propaganda.

The Redditor notes that The Clone Wars essentially served as the foundation for the “militaristic xenophobic authoritarian Galactic Empire.” Despite that, the separatists are always portrayed in an antagonistic light while defenders of the Republic are always seen as the good guys. The Redditor mentions that whenever the Republic does something questionable, it is often overlooked. This includes invading Umbara and knocking out the power generator in Ondoron. In Star Wars: The Clone Wars, Chancellor Palpatine seems like an entirely different character with no sinister motives, while Count Dooku seems far more evil than his cinematic counterpart. The clones are also humanized in Star Wars: The Clone Wars in a way that is never seen in the prequel trilogy.

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The Redditor ends by speculating that Star Wars: The Clone Wars is told through the perspective of Admiral Yularen following the fall of the Republic, who views the Jedi as flawed but generally good and the separatists as evil incarnate. The Redditor notes that every single episode starts with a WWII propagandaesque broadcast from a narrator. While the theory became extremely popular on the Fan Theories, many Redditors in the comment section disagreed with the original post and expressed their own points of view.

One Redditor mentioned there are multiple episodes in Star Wars: The Clone Wars in which the intentions of the Republic are morally questionable, making the claims of the original fan theory less credible. Another Redditor claimed that if Star Wars: The Clone Wars was Republic propaganda, there’s absolutely no way Ahsoka’s entire arc would be included on the show. A couple of Redditors poked holes into the original theory by pointing out that there are scenes in which the audience knows things that the characters don’t, and if the show was entirely Republic propaganda, then we wouldn’t be seeing these scenes. Redditors also made the point that not all of the separatists are portrayed as villains, as there are members of the Separatist Senate who don’t want the war to continue, but it is being engineered by Chancellor Palpatine and Count Dooku.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars protagonist Ahsoka Tano has been confirmed for the second season of Disney+’s hit series The Mandalorian and will be played by Daredevil star Rosario Dawson. In addition to Tano, Star Wars: The Clone Wars showrunner Dave Filoni hinted that The Clone Wars alum Captain Rex will appear in the second season of The Mandalorian.

Streaming on Disney+, the final season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars stars Matt Lanter as Anakin Skywalker, Ashley Eckstein as Ahsoka Tano, Dee Bradley Baker as Captain Rex and the clone troopers, James Arnold Taylor as Obi-Wan Kenobi, Katee Sackhoff as Bo-Katan and Sam Witwer as Maul. A new episode arrives each Friday.

NEXT: The Clone Wars Makes Us Question Han Solo’s Fabled Kessel Run… AGAIN

A new fan theory on Reddit made the convincing claim that Star Wars: The Clone Wars is Republic-propaganda.

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Birds of Prey and THAT Deadpool Comparison | CBR

Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) drew quite a few comparisons to the Deadpool films leading up to and following its release. The biggest comparison was that both Harley Quinn and Wade Wilson often break the fourth wall to address the audience.

However, Birds of Prey director Cathy Yan isn’t concerned. She laughed off the comparison, saying that it was true to Harley’s character.

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“The entire concept of the movie was very much like “This is Harley Quinn’s story, and this is the way she’s telling the story,” Yan said in an interview with THR. “It’s going to be wacky, crazy and jump around in time, and it’s not going to make sense until it does.”

She went on to talk about why the idea appealed to her: “All of that was this wonderful concept that I fell in love with in the script because it was like, ‘Oh, wow, you’re actually playing with form in a way that is grounded in character.’ It’s so exciting to be able to tell a story and make a movie through Harley Quinn’s eyes. So, breaking the fourth wall was just an element of that.”

Wan also confirmed that the film was intended to be R-rated from inception, and stemmed from what star Margot Robbie and screenwriter Christina Hodson intended to do with the movie.

RELATED: Margot Robbie Did Her Own Birds of Prey Stunts – This Video Proves It

Directed by Cathy Yan and written by Christina Hudson, Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) stars Margot Robbie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Rosie Perez, Chris Messina, Ella Jay Basco and Ewan McGregor. The film is now available on video-on-demand.

Director Cathy Yan addresses the comparison of Birds of Prey's narrative style to Deadpool's, and why it's only surface level.

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The Platform: Who Is the Message's Mystery Girl? | CBR

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for The Platform, now streaming on Netflix.

The Platform is a sci-fi and psychological thriller that wades deep into classism and elitism. It follows Goreng (Iván Massagué), who enters the mysterious Pit for a six-month study to earn a diploma involving studies of the human psyche. This tower consists of various levels with a majestic spread of food being sent from the top to the bottom on a moving table by the elites and their chefs. It’s up to each level to determine what should be left for below, thus it tests the compassion and empathy of society.

However, Goreng soon realizes the ultimate response would be to show the elites that mankind can stop killing each other and end the greed enjoyed by administrators of the Pit. He and his new level-mate on Level 6, Baharat (Emilio Buale Coka) bear arms and head down, warding off anyone trying to eat until Level 50 where they’ll start rationing food, as they know these levels have suffered. But as they descend, they discover a young girl who seems to be the answer to their overlords’ plans, although her identity and how she got there remain a mystery.

RELATED: The Platform Is a Beautifully Brutal Depiction of Class Warfare

Goreng has been through hell in the Pit, bumping from various levels, including the bottom where he barely had anything to eat and even had to kill people. He ate the flesh of some of his victims to survive, which is why he and Baharat believe if they send one pristine dish back up, in this case, it’s panna cotta, it’ll show the elites the people aren’t the monsters they’re manipulating them to be.

But as they fight off inmates to get to the bottom, they’re badly wounded after Goreng estimated wrong. He thought there’d be 250 levels but it reaches 333. They get off but the table with the plates heads down even more. They’re shocked because they have no clue what’s below but everything changes here when they meet a young girl. Goreng passes out from his wounds and has a fever dream with Baharat telling him the girl is the new message. When he wakes up, he finds Baharat dead and begins to believe she serves a higher purpose.

RELATED: Netflix’s Kingdom Handles Death Better Than The Walking Dead

Earlier, Goreng was saved from his cannibalistic level-mate, Trimagasi (Zorion Eguileor) by a crazy inmate known as Miharu (Alexandra Masangkay). He’s told she was looking for her daughter who was trapped in the Pit but no pregnant woman can enter, nor are kids allowed, which is confirmed by another level-mate, Imoguiri (Antonia San Juan), Goreng gets later on.

He trusts her because she was the person who admitted him and she’s now in the Pit as she has terminal cancer. She simply wants to spread decency amongst the inmates and remind them they can be kind. However, when she hangs herself after losing faith in people, Goreng’s hope begins to fade too. He meets Imoguiri on the next level but witnesses inmates killing her, and as he breaks mentally, he thinks she’s found peace. But with the girl now coming to light on 333, Goreng is adamant Imoguiri wasn’t crazy — this really is her daughter.

RELATED: The Letter For The King Falls Victim To The ‘Bury Your Gays’ Trope

She’s fed the panna cotta because she’s hungry, with Goreng believing she’s the true message for the chefs. Sending her back up top will prove how resilient humanity is, and it’ll show no one killed her as they believe in kids being the future. He takes her with him when the table arrives and they leave 333, heading down to the bottom of the Pit.

There, he hallucinates Trimagasi, with whom he had a lot of philosophical conversations. Trimagasi was in for manslaughter but they did form a bond, so when he tells Goreng “the message requires no bearer,” Goreng gets off and lets the girl head back up alone. It’s a pretty vague ending, though, because according to Imoguiri no pregnant women could have been here or even tried to raise kids with all the inmates around.

At this point, one has to wonder if she’s all in Goreng’s head as it seems he’s dying, walking off into the afterlife with Trimagasi. Maybe she’s blind hope manifesting in his mind because no one knows if she’ll be killed by the elites or even plucked off the table as it speeds back up. Some theorists posited she was a late entry into the pit, sent in as a test to see if the inmates would have killed and eaten her, with those who protected her gaining a shot at being pulled back up. Unfortunately, Goreng couldn’t have gone up even if he wanted to as it’s apparent he dies at the end. Viewers don’t see the girl’s final fate as director Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia removed the shot of her on Level 0 to leave it ambiguous and see who’s optimistic and who’s not.

Starring Ivan Massagué, Zorion Eguileor, Antonia San Juan, Emilio Buale and Alexandra Masangkay, The Platform is currently streaming on Netflix.

KEEP READING: The Letter For The King’s Ending, Explained

The Platform focuses on a scary tower with inmates fighting for food, but in the finale, there's a strange message in the form of a young girl.

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Steven Universe: The Series Accomplished What Game of Thrones Couldn't

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for the finale of Steven Universe Future, which aired Friday on Cartoon Network

2019 saw the end of Marvel’s Infinity Saga, The Skywalker Saga and HBO’s Game of Thrones, while 2020 has seen the end of another beloved franchise. Steven Universe Future premiered it’s finale last week, and it successfully managed to do with Steven what Game of Thrones wanted to do with Daenerys.

Steven Universe Future ends with Steven transforming into a monster that can overpower the Crystal Gems and the Diamonds. His transformation is caused by seven seasons worth of trauma, but the gems, diamonds and his human loved ones are able to bring Steven back through compassion and love.

RELATED: Steven Universe Creator Talks About Crafting the Show’s End

Similarly, Game of Thrones ends with Daenerys becoming a metaphorical monster who kills thousands of innocent people and turns into a dictator. Her transformation is caused by trauma that stems back to her ancestors, but instead of receiving compassion from her allies, she is backstabbed by the man she loves.

There are a few key differences between these transformations, the first being how trauma is handled. In Steven Universe Future, the season is dedicated to Steven’s mental decay, revisiting his trauma from the past while addressing his current inability to communicate with loved ones and his desire to help everyone but himself. Even before this season, the original series Steven Universe addressed how Steven is suffering from trauma, best seen in episode 107, “Mindful Education.”

RELATED: Steven Universe Creator Rebecca Sugar Doesn’t See the Gems as Neurotypical

Game of Thrones, on the other hand, is not known for handling trauma well, exhibited in how Sansa is grateful for the abuse she’s endured and how Daenerys’s trauma is used as a catalyst for the show’s next “big bad.” Unlike Steven Universe, though, which revisits Steven’s trauma so audiences make the connection between his mental turmoil and his transformation, Game of Thrones rushes this process and assumes audiences will buy that Daenerys has also been mentally unstable and a threat.

A second difference is that both of these characters have genetic ties to “monstrous” people. Steven is related to the Diamonds, colonist oppressors, as well as Rose Quartz, a gem who lied to her allies and never answered for the consequences of her actions. Daenerys is a descendant of the Mad King, a man who killed thousands of innocent people and planned to kill more in a similar fashion to his daughter’s attack on King’s Landing.

RELATED: Steven Universe’s Final Gifts to the Crystal Gems Explained

While both have these relationships, Steven Universe focuses on how Steven is not his mother nor is he like the Diamonds, as explored in season five of the original series. His transformation is not about becoming like them. It’s about how the weight of his trauma has become too much. Throughout Game of Thrones, however, there’s been the implication that madness and violence are inherent traits of Targaryens. Daenerys tries to avoid this fate, proclaiming in season five, “I am not my father.” Despite her drive to be better, Daenerys ultimately finishes what her father started, razing King’s Landing and losing herself in the process.

The third difference comes down to their motives before and after their transformations. Steven and Daenerys are descendants of oppressive royals and desire to break the cycle of abuse. Where Steven succeeds by the final season, Daenerys has not. As a result, Steven transforms because he must face his trauma, but Daenerys uses her transformation as a means to “win,” creating the illusion that it’s for the greater good. Along with these differences, both transformations end on contrasting notes. Steven survives his transformation, has a support network and gets a chance to better himself. Daenerys dies alone and as a villain.

Game of Thrones ends on a tragic note for Daenerys. Her trauma turned her into what she hated most, which was apparently inevitable given her family. Her good heart and desire to end oppression meant nothing in the end, and she was abandoned despite the fact that she needed help, while Steven Universe Future does the opposite. Steven’s transformation is organic because the show dedicates the time to properly representing his trauma, never commodifying it for a final boss battle. The show lives up to its reputation by accurately discussing the pain those with trauma endure and showing that it’s okay to be vulnerable, that people don’t have to go through this alone and that there’s always hope.

KEEP READING: How Steven Universe’s Same-Sex Wedding Changed Every Cartoon Network Show

Steven's fate in Steven Universe Future bears some similarities to Daenerys's in Game of Thrones, but his is better handled.

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New BossLogic Endgame Art Pits The Avengers Vs. COVID-19 | CBR

The final battle in Avengers: Endgame was an epic, complex whirlwind of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s beloved characters facing off against Thanos, the greatest threat they had ever known. It’s not the kind of scene anyone would think to look for in the real world, but there are battles to be fought here, too.

Artist BossLogic made just that point with his latest artwork, which reimagines Thanos as the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and the Avengers as the medical professionals working to defeat it.

RELATED: Batmobile Patrols Spain’s Streets, Urging Self-Quarantining

Steve Rogers is in the foreground of the defense line, but instead of a captain he’s now Doctor America, with the iconic star on his helmet replaced with a red cross. Farther back, characters such as Thor and the Hulk are gathered, decked out in scrubs and masks.

The art was posted to BossLogic’s Instagram in two installments, along with the text “Thank you, for then, for now and for everything that has yet to come.” He also added the hashtags #nohandshakes and #WashYourHands as a reminder of what everyone can do to help stop the spread of coronavirus.

RELATED: BossLogic Recreates Rob Liefeld’s Captain America With Chris Evans

The message is clear: the medical professionals and healthcare workers who are saving lives and caring for the sick are the heroes in this time of the pandemic.

Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Endgame stars Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, Paul Rudd as Ant-Man, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Danai Gurira as Okoye and Bradley Cooper as Rocket, with Gwyneth Paltrow Pepper Potts, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Benedict Wong as Wong, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie and Josh Brolin as Thanos. The film is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray and 4K UHD

New fan art by BossLogic shows the Avengers as healthcare professionals facing off against a virus-headed Thanos for the final battle of Endgame.