It’s a new year! There are plans in the works for Lost in Translation, some that can be announced now.
The pandemic has slowed down finding potential reviews. It’s not as easy to walk down racks of DVDs for sale at a store when the stores are closed and people are encouraged to social distance. Streaming and online shopping aren’t as useful as just browsing for the purpose of finding something interesting to review. It’s how reviews like Convoy; I found the DVD for sale at a record store.
Streaming, though, is good for finding new adaptations, whether they’re fresh from the theatres, redirected to streaming because of lockdowns, or created specifically for the streaming service. It’ll take time, mainly due to the limitations of viewing, but Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop and Disney+’s The Book of Boba Fett, Star Wars: Vision, and WandaVision are on the to-review list.
Streaming isn’t the only source of adaptations. Manos: The Hands of Fate has not one but two literary adaptations. The novels, Manos: The Hands of Fate and Manos: The Talons of Fate, both written by Stephen D. Sullivan, are on the to-read pile. Both are being treated as adaptations because of the length of time between movie and novelization.
Before tackling the Manos books, I want to finish Dr. No so that the Bond project gets going again. How best to get the project going again with the movie that started the 007 franchise? The slow down is medical; I need a new prescription for glasses. However, I am getting through the original novel. Once that’s done, I can review the movie.
The oddest review I want to do is a review of Jelle’s Marble League, a video game adaptation of Jelle’s Marble Runs’ Marble League. The Marble League, essentially the Olympics with marbles, gained a wider audience after John Oliver highlighted the sport on Last Week Tonight, leading to the show sponsoring the 2020 Marble League just in time for the pandemic. One caveat with this review, though – I backed the IndieGoGo campaign to a level where I get to be a marble in the crowd. I’ll try to keep the biases to a minimum.
There is more to 2022 than the above can possibly cover, but that should keep me busy for the first quarter of the year. Regular reviews should start next week. Thank you for your patience over the past few weeks and for reading for however long you’ve been here.
Changing up the year-end posts this year. Since 2021 isn’t over yet, getting the numbers for popular movies doesn’t make sense now. Let’s take a look ahead to 2022 and what we can expect.
Like this time last year, COVID-19 was and is a concern. Restrictions were loosened over 2021, only to have them return as infected numbers beat the peaks of 2020. Vaccines and boosters are available, but they only work if a large percentage of the population get it; that percentage is currently unknown. With Omicron and rising numbers, it’s a fair bet to say that 2022 will start the same way 2021 did, with lockdowns.
This will give streaming services an edge over cinemas. If entertainment centres are shut down, streaming services like Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime can fill in the gaps. All a streaming service needs is a draw, like The Mandalorian for Disney+ and Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop. Traditional broadcast TV can ride along by developing new series that can draw a trapped audience. There’s a window, at least during the opening months of 2022, for streaming and traditional broadcast to exploit.
Afterwards, people are getting tired of being stuck inside. It’s part of the reason why there are variants to COVID-19. Cabin fever is real. Humans are a social creature. People self-isolating for close to two years are tired of being stuck alone or with a small number of the same people day in and day out. Going out to movies is as much a social interaction, even if going alone, as it is consumption of entertainment. Studios should be preparing for a massive return.
Being risk adverse, studios will go with adaptations. It is difficult to compete with a known quantity, even if people are getting tired of that quality. Marvel movies arent going anywhere in the near future. Blockbusters will draw more people than introspective character films. Explosions are popular. Superheroes can bring explosions and survive them and are a known quantity. Marvel movies aren’t going to lose money, at least not in 2022.
In short, when it comes to entertainment and adaptations, 2022 will look a lot like 2021, maybe with things being more open thanks to vaccines and boosters that were just being rolled out in early 2021. COVID-19 will loom like a spectre, though, and if people don’t get vaccinated, streaming services will be the only ones to benefit.