Streaming News Roundup: Jul 17, 2017

Netflix Scores Big With Emmy Wins, Hulu and Amazon Get Some Love, Too

Streaming companies saw huge increases in Emmy nominations this year with Netflix getting a whopping 91 nominations, making them the year’s second most nominated network behind only HBO. Netflix received noms for shows such as the critically acclaimed Stranger Things, the Queen Elizabeth miniseries The Crown, and the documentary 13th. Hulu saw a decent bump in its number of nominations this year at 18, thanks in large part to The Handmaid’s Tale. Meanwhile, Amazon held steady from last year with 16 nominations.

[Via Variety]

Hulu Now Has Exclusive Streaming Rights to Bob’s Burgers

Take heed, all ye fans of the Fox animated series.

[Via Engadget]

Star Trek: Discovery on CBS All Access Has a Premiere Date

There’s a lot riding on possibility of success for Star Trek: Discovery, which could essentially make or break CBS’s future as a streaming network. Star Trek is by far one of their most iconic television properties, so I can see why it might make sense to use this as their starting point to streaming-exclusive programming. That being said, it caters to one of the most tech savvy fanbases of any franchise, which increases the potential for piracy if people want to (illegally) avoid paying the subscription fee to watch it.

I know I’ll be tuning in, at least to the premiere which will also be broadcast on CBS before it becomes available on-demand on September 24th at 8:30PM ET. Immediately after the first two episodes will be available to stream, which new episodes coming weekly every Sunday until November 5th. The second part of the 15 episode season will then resume in January.

Check out the trailer here

[Via Deadline]

HBO and Cinemax Are Now Available as Add-on Packages for Hulu Users

Hulu has previously partnered with Showtime to offer a streaming package. The pricing for HBO on Hulu is consistent with HBO Go, so this is primarily aimed at people that want to consolidate their streaming content into one place. Winter is coming, Hulu users.

[Via CNBC]

Hulu Review: Difficult People (Season 1)

difficult-people-15.jpg

Where to watch: Hulu exclusive series

Best for: Fans of Billy on the Street, people that have finished watching The Handmaid’s Tale and are wondering what else is on Hulu

Difficult People is a show about a gay man and his female best friend that is a bit like a grumpier, drunker, more down-to-earth version of Will and Grace. Both of the main characters are aspiring comics in New York City. There’s Billy Epstein (played by Billy Eichner) and Julie Kessler (played by Julie Klausner) who are characters that would each be rather grating in real life but can be appreciated on their own merits behind the safe comfort of your television screen (or computer screen … or tablet … or phone … you get the idea).

The show finds its humor by appealing to some of the worst things about ourselves and the people we interact with on an everyday basis in the narcissistic world that is the 21st century. Billy and Julie are like caricatured versions of the modern man and woman on their worst days- they relentlessly judge other people and then wonder why they can’t seem to hit it off with anyone, they express their extreme distaste for children and then wonder why kids don’t seem to like them, and constantly seek attention while scolding millennials for being too self-absorbed. It’s rather unfortunate that these elements of the show are relatable, but whether or not we admit it to ourselves, this is where the show achieves is humor.

Difficult People is produced by Amy Poehler and features a line of guest stars that is a bit like an Avengers-style team-up of current comedy icons. Seeing Amy Sedaris or Kate McKinnon show up on any show is always a welcome addition for me. The show is a witty and smartly-produced series that tackles some of the most annoying elements of the, ahem, difficult people in our lives in a humorous way. While the main characters are at times a bit hard to cheer for, the show never stops being an entertaining and funny addition to Hulu’s comedy lineup.

I give it: 3.75 stars (out of 5)

Now Streaming: Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Movie Review

large_6Lv49E0aEusW9vKEMgQgLdetlmO.jpg

Currently Streaming On: Hulu, Epix, and Amazon Prime Instant Video

(Please note: This is current at the time of publishing in June 2017. Movies come and go from streaming services all the time so visit justwatch.com to see where (or if) it’s currently streaming)

Best for: People who liked the original Indiana Jones films but aren’t picky

The past decade or so has seen Harrison Ford riding waves of nostalgia towards box office success in sequels to Star Wars, Indiana Jones, and the soon-to-be-released follow-up to Bladerunner. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is a film that somehow managed to be both a critical and commercial success, as well as a controversial, polarizing film that saw hordes of Indy fans turn on George Lucas and Co.

It can be a tricky balancing act to release a movie sequel decades after the originals left theaters. When dealing with material many fans revere as a sacred part of their childhood, it can be easy to turn them against you. You can either hit a sweet spot that seems like a long-overdue homage to the classics while still managing to successfully pass the baton onto a new generation of heroes (as in The Force Awakens), or you can alienate fanboys by veering too far away from the source material (as in the Ghostbusters reboot).

Crystal Skull ended up being more of the latter. While I found it to be an otherwise passable popcorn flick that hit all of the same beats you would expect from an Indiana Jones film, the devil is in the details. Namely a few notable scenes that will have you asking- did they really just do that!? Without spoiling anything there is an infamous scene involving a refrigerator that might make you want to throw the remote at the TV. There are also a number of supernatural elements to the plot of the film that might seem odd and out of place if you haven’t watched the original films in a while.

The filmmakers went out of their way to get a classic 80’s feel to the film, even opting for classic stunt work as opposed to computer generated stunt “actors” that are common in other modern films. Yet there is still quite a bit of CGI that looks a bit fake and takes you out of the nostalgic experience. Plus Karen Allen returns as Indiana Jones’ love interest from Raiders of the Lost Ark in a performance that’s pretty lame, and Shia LaBeouf’s character seems to practically drown in 1950’s greaser stereotypes that seem more fitting for a middle school production of “Grease Jr.” than a major Hollywood film.

Many people saw Kingdom of the Crystal Skull when it was released in 2008, but many others didn’t. If you are among the uninitiated, I would recommend watching this at least once to see where the further adventures of Indiana Jones ventured to. Unlike the all-time classic Raiders of the Lost Ark, however, that one time will likely be your last.

I give the movie: 2.5 out of 5 stars