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The Old Guard: a new concept on immortality – Brig Newspaper

Immortality is an age-old trope, but Netflixs new film The Old Guard gives audiences a new take on it. Based off a graphic novel, it follows a team of mercenaries trying to change the world for the better. However, despite their quick ability to heal, these immortals eventually do die making the story all the more interesting.

Headlining the film is Charlize Theron, whose character Andy (Andromache of Scythia, if were being formal) is the oldest of the team. Seeing Theron bring to life a powerful ancient woman who doesnt see the impact of her actions is refreshing.

It brings forward a new opportunity for a different type of hero. One who has given everything to make the world better, but only sees it getting worse.

Its something most heroes refuse to see. Andy has been alive long enough that time has taken its toll on her. However, its this exact view that is the cause behind the main twist in the film. This twist has audiences stunned.

Andy is tired of losing everything but the physical fight. She is tired of seeing the world devour itself, and carries the weight of the worlds actions on her. We see a hero who considers herself a traitor due to her past.

What makes the film interesting is that well never know the full truth. Andy never reveals to the audience how old she is. We only know she is old enough and its exciting. Not knowing opens doors to a lot more of the flashbacks were invited to see.

Theres no hero origin trope in the film. It begins with existing members Andy, Nicky, Sebastian (Booker) and Joe. They are a group of immortal beings with different backstories, but we get to witness the fifth members introduction: Nile, a young woman who died in action.

The series provides an appreciative international cast of characters with a dose of woke culture. Our characters originated in different parts of the world, exceptionally diversifying the film. This allows for different cultures to be recognised and an interesting range of backstories.

Most importantly, it breaks out of the All-American mould and introduces a powerful gay relationship.

Two of the team are men engaged in a decade-old romance. Nicky and Joes story has been entangled from the beginning. They began as enemies on opposing sides during the Crusades before falling in love. They share a romance that has grown beyond love into something older.

It casts a light on the isolation Andy feels by contrast. Audiences see an everlasting love against an internal conflict, challenging viewers on whether immortality itself is soul-destroying or nurturing.

But whether they like it or not, they are engaged in a cycle of death and resurrection.

In an age where the greediest of mankind only think for themselves, The Old Guard introduces a very topical villain, Merrick. He owns a pharma giant and is fuelled by self-interest and money, not to better mankind with his creations.

Hes perhaps a disgusting reflection of humanity. Wanting to do something not for the good but for the praise. Merrick is a CEO who wants power and wants to be admired. He wants success. Behind the curtain of his do-gooding is his true desire; to be the one who gets all the credit.

The theme of morality is carried throughout the film. The immortals moral goal is to better humanity, whereas Merrick believes its a moral obligation to dissect them. Then Nile is left to question what her morals should be. Where does she belong?

Immortality is unknown, but she misses her family. With this newfound life, she needs to decide what route to take in her life.

However, the choice is taken from her. Consent is taken out of the picture within The Old Guard because immortality doesnt offer a choice. Being immortal means she has to leave her life behind or suffer similar consequences to other members, such as Sebastian (Booker).

Sebastian lost everything because of his immortality. The film shows very realistic impacts of being able to live through everything, such as watching your loved ones grow old and being unable to save them, like Sebastian had to.

It leaves Nile with the inevitable choice to join the rest of the immortals. Thus, she must dedicate her life to their endless task of ending corruption.

However, there is no grand villain. Theres no one big bad guy to defeat. But theres a dozen waiting, formed out of society and the world itself. There is never only one bad guy. This was refreshing because its true.

If we look at the world today, its impossible to see just one villain.

Perhaps thats the purpose of the film. Behind the excellent but fleeting violent scenes, theres a deeper meaning. One that challenges choices in life and the moral obligations which fit into them. Even the film itself lands on the opportunity of choice.

The Old Guard is not a new genre at all. However, the themes throughout are refreshing and engage audiences interests. It may be criticised for lacking action; however, its still engaging. Personally, with such an unexpected ending, I hope to see a sequel.

Featured image credit: The New York Times

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The Old Guard: a new concept on immortality - Brig Newspaper

Jorge Masvidal is one win from immortality and a Conor McGregor payday – Insider – INSIDER

FIGHT ISLAND It's 2003 and backyard fights are one of the most watchable things on the internet, providing you're into barbaric, skull-cracking violence, like me.

A fresh-faced Jorge Masvidal had been training at the same Florida gym as the late Kimbo Slice, a barrel-chested brawler who was as bald as he was beardy, and who had been developing a cult hero status because of his knockout prowess in underground bouts.

Masvidal, an unknown entity even at a local level, received a call to see if he was interested in competing bareknuckle. He remembers ordering a McDonald's at the drive-thru when his phone rang at the time.

"Hell yeah," he said. "Damn right. Let's do it." Masvidal was always down to scrap.

One week later the teenager was trading blows with a mid-20s Miami bouncer called Reynoldo Fuentes, who had already knocked one guy out cold in Kimbo's backyard earlier that day.

Masvidal proved to be a far greater challenge, ESPN reported, as Fuentes lost.

Dressed in baggy jean shorts, Nike sneakers, and with long and thick hair tied behind his head in a ponytail, a shirtless Masvidal went to work on Fuentes.

He left his exhausted opponent needing two men to help him walk after it was called off, before slumping to the floor, beaten, with a concerned Kimbo watching on.

Kimbo, though, was so entertained he demanded to see a rematch a couple of months later.

Fuentes, known as "Rey," received $500 for the do-over, one he wanted to win so bad he had a "structured" fight camp as if it were an organized, sanctioned event, according to the UFC.

Masvidal, in contrast, had no stable income. He lived on his own, and with ready-cash hard to come by, he was sometimes forced to sleep in his car which he parked in the lot of Kimbo's gym, ESPN said.

A teenage, street-fighting Masvidal. Photos by Jorge Masvidal / YouTube

"It was a tough, soul-searching moment," Masvidal said on his YouTube channel. "It wasn't easy. There were no time limits on that, so we were just going. His shots were a little heavier than mine, especially back then at that time."

The structured camp Rey endured was obvious to Masvidal, who noticed he was tougher when taking shots to the body. Rey also floored Masvidal with a heavy straight right punch to the jaw. "Oh man, my head was spinning," Masvidal said. "And this f------ gorilla was still coming at me."

Though Rey knocked Masvidal down in the rematch, he couldn't knock him out and failed to keep up with the pace set by Masvidal, who varied his punch selection throughout the bout. Rey lost once again, this time with his hands on his knees, unwilling or just physically unable to go on.

Little did Rey know, but Kimbo had been interested in Masvidal for a while, identifying him from his gym as a potentially exceptional young striking talent.

Almost two decades later, after far surpassing Kimbo's fame level, Masvidal has once again taken a fight on a week's notice.

The stakes, this time, are much higher.

If victorious, Masvidal will wrest the UFC welterweight championship belt away from current ruler Kamaru Usman's waist, adding it to the "Baddest Mother F-----" belt he won after beating Nate Diaz, last year.

Masvidal enjoyed a breakout 2019 in which he was thrust from the consciousnesses of hardcore combat audiences and placed in front of the broader sports fan.

A title triumph at UFC 251 on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi this weekend would amplify Masvidal's crossover appeal so much, he may coax Conor McGregor out of the Dubliner's abrupt retirement, a retirement few in the industry seem to believe anyway.

Coronavirus-induced chaos has marooned multiple athletes from "Fight Island" this weekend, so it's a good job Masvidal, a man also known as "Street Jesus," washed ashore with much acclaim to save the show and, in words he would likely use, "baptize a fool."

Event staff disinfects a UFC Octagon next to Bruce Buffer getting ready to announce a fight. Photo by Getty Images

COVID-19 threatened to dilute the quality of UFC's signature summer showcase to the world, a four-event residency in a 25 square kilometer region on Yas Island which is quarantined from the rest of Abu Dhabi.

The greatest event is Saturday's pay-per-view, UFC 251, which features three championship fights and many other significant showdowns.

Throughout the pandemic era in sports, one name or, rather, one acronym has stood above the rest in the wild west of combat sports landscapes.

After a three-month hiatus, the UFC returned to operations mid-May in Jacksonville, Florida, a month before Top Rank boxing restarted its own gig in Las Vegas, with around a third and sometimes as low as a quarter of the viewing figures which MMA's market-leader has been enjoying.

UFC continues to fine-tune how it navigates the prospect of live events behind-closed-doors, but no matter how much planning the company puts into health, safety, and card construction, nobody can predict who or how many athletes will test positive for the novel coronavirus.

Just ask Gilbert Burns, a 33-year-old ground game expert from Brazil, who has already excelled in one pandemic show so far one in which he tested negative for the coronavirus throughout. But he is now positive, and he is not alone.

Burns out-pointed the former welterweight champ, Tyron Woodley, on May 30 and was given the nod to take on Usman at "Fight Island."

But on Saturday, July 4, MMA Fighting reported that Burns tested positive for the coronavirus. Burns would not fly to "Fight Island," and the UFC's main event was in jeopardy.

Within hours, though, the UFC entered negotiations with Masvidal as decision-makers sought to save the company's marquee month of the year.

One day later, a deal was struck. Shortly after that, Masvidal tested negative for the coronavirus and so his representatives, First Round Management, could make plans to get their client from Las Vegas to Abu Dhabi by private jet.

Jorge Masvidal finally got a UFC title shot after 48 fights in MMA.

Though it was not the UFC's first choice for a "Fight Island" main event, an Usman-Masvidal match is the most significant pairing of fighters since Justin Gaethje upset Tony Ferguson in a dominant lightweight thriller, May 9.

UFC 249's main event two months ago showcased two of the very best athletes not only in the 155-pound weight class but in all MMA.

UFC 251, like the 249 event, showcases two of the very best athletes in a division, this time at welterweight. And both feature prominently in Insider's list of the 15 best MMA fighters today.

It rarely gets bigger, better, or badder not when a "Bad Mother F-----" is involved.

Some athletes enter the UFC with collegiate-wrestling backgrounds in America, with great ground game foundations in Brazil, or with a striking pedigree from Europe.

Being a bonafide badass may well be Masvidal's base style as street-fighting has been in his DNA since childhood when he roamed West Miami neighborhoods getting into rucks.

Jorge Masvidal knocked a guy out in front of Hugh Hefner. Photos by Getty Images

"I don't know how many heads I cracked," he said to Fightland of his developmental years as a child from 7 to 14. Armed with a knife, one kid even tried to mug him, he said.

But being known for cramming his knuckles into a random thug's mouth was not something he wanted as a reputation. He wanted to be a boxer, a wrestler. And when he found MMA, he realized he could be both.

Masvidal earned an $18,000 check for knocking someone out in front of Hugh Hefner.

It's 2007 and Masvidal finds himself in another man's backyard, punching another opponent in the face for the entertainment of an exclusive audience.

But this fight wasn't organized by Kimbo, and this wasn't underground.

This was a legitimate MMA operation called Strikeforce, promoted by eventual Bellator MMA boss Scott Coker, and this was the first cagefighting event held at the $200 million Playboy mansion in Beverly Hills.

Strikeforce had only held seven events at that point, and Coker viewed the opportunity as a no-brainer as it would see his brand placed alongside Playboy's.

"Hugh Hefner represented pop culture in a way that no else could," Coker later told Uproxx.

Tickets sold for a thousand bucks a pop, and one writer observed plenty of scantily-clad Playboy bunnies at cageside.

Masvidal walked into the cage at 10:11 p.m. armed with good-form having won five in a row.

One minute and 33 seconds after the opening bell, he left that same cage with another win this one was devastating.

Matt Lee, a lightweight, barely knew what hit him as Masvidal attacked him with his knees and elbows. It was not long before Lee wilted, falling half-beaten on the canvas.

Masvidal forced the referee to separate the pair after dispatching an avalanche of fists. Game over.

Who knows how inspiring it was for Masvidal to win, in style, at the Playboy mansion while Hefner sat a dozen feet away, wearing silk pajamas underneath a burgundy smoking jacket, clapping and smiling with his blonde girlfriends.

Fight night is a Versace robe night if you're Jorge Masvidal. Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

But 13 years later, many months after he had knocked out Darren Till, scored a 5-second highlight-reel KO over Ben Askren, and made Nate Diaz bleed in the "BMF" bout, Masvidal, at the height of his popularity, watched Conor McGregor destroy Donald Cerrone in January sporting his own bedroom style a black Versace robe.

Earlier this week, he boarded a private jet wearing a bright, Miami pink Versace robe, and looked relaxed while heading for Abu Dhabi to take on Usman, his greatest challenge to date.

While Masvidal may have been training for an opportunity like this, to step-in at late notice during a time in which the coronavirus can scupper a bout at any time, Usman will have been training only for Burns a jiu-jitsu specialist.

As Masvidal is a multi-dimensional striker with good wrestling, he is a significantly different style match-up for Usman than Burns was.

Usman is unbeaten in a five-year stretch with the UFC, a time in which he has scalped some of the top names in the division including Leon Edwards, Demian Maia, Rafael dos Anjos, Tyron Woodley, and Colby Covington.

Beating "The Nigerian Nightmare" would punctuate an unconventional career for Masvidal, and could well earn him a mega-money payday against Conor McGregor, should the Irishman return to the sport once again.

That the welterweight title would be on the line, and McGregor would be gunning for a championship belt in a third weight class, could be enough to coax him into the cage and it's something Masvidal told us he wants, too.

Masvidal would relish defending a title against McGregor, and he even told us earlier in the year that he'd happily put his "Baddest Mother F----" belt on the line, providing McGregor put something in the pot, too like a stake in Proper no. Twelve.

"If I put my [BMF] belt up, someone has to put something else up. Cash, money. Something that makes sense to me," Masvidal told Insider.

We piqued Masvidal's interest when we mentioned McGregor could offer shares in one of his companies, like his whiskey brand.

"If the company is worth any money, we can do something," he said.

McGregor may well be keen, telling the Las Vegas media ahead of his sole bout this year a UFC 246 smash-and-grab win over Donald Cerrone in January that he "would like that BMF title."

McGregor coined the phrase "red panty night," which is something the Dubliner says each of his opponents enjoys when they learn they've hit the jackpot a fight with him.

"You ring back home, you ring your wife, 'Baby, we've done it. We're rich, baby. Conor McGregor made us rich, break out the red panties'," McGregor said to Rafael dos Anjos at the "Go Big" press conference in 2015.

If Masvidal defeats Usman, which no man has yet done in the UFC, and you add a legacy-defining victory to the Floridian's escalating fame, a McGregor match would be a red panty night.

But it would likely be a Versace robe night, too.

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Jorge Masvidal is one win from immortality and a Conor McGregor payday - Insider - INSIDER

Netflix’s The Old Guard: The Explosive Ending, Explained | CBR – CBR – Comic Book Resources

Netflix's The Old Guard ends on an explosive note as a group of immortal soldiers try to fight off a pharmaceutical tycoon and his sinister legion.

WARNING: The following contains spoilers for The Old Guard, now available on Netflix.

Netflix's The Old Guard adapts the Image Comics title from Greg Rucka and Leandro Fernndez that focuses on a group of immortal mercenaries whoare targeted by a pharmaceutical tycoon, Merrick (Harry Melling), and an ex-CIA agent, Copley (Chiwetel Ejiofor). The plan is to harvest their genes but it all changes when the newest addition, ex-Marine Niles (KiKi Layne), enters the fray.

This leads to a high-octane finale that changes the future of the group as leader Andy (Charlize Theron) finally accepts they should be out there making a difference rather than hiding in the shadows.

RELATED:The Old Guard: Netflix's Next Comic Book Adaptation, Explained

Andy's squad is ambushed outside of France with lovers, Nick (Luca Marinelli) and Joe (Marwan Kenzari), taken. Booker's (Matthias Schoenaerts) left badly wounded, but after Andy slaughters the rest of attackers, they decide to recover their friends. Unfortunately, Niles leaves the group because she can't handle this life and abandoning her family, -- at least until she realizes Andy gave her an unloaded gun and is walking into a trap.

At Copley's lair, Booker turns on Andy, revealing he was amole all along. Merrick's goons arrive and take the rest of immortals, with Booker admitting if Merrick's scientists could unlock the key to their immortality, maybe they can take it away. He's just tired of living for centuries, enduring deaths of loved ones like this three sons. Copley doesn't like Merrick's confession, however, about monetizing their genes, but when he objects, he's beaten.

RELATED: Warrior Nun's First Major Tragedy Rips Everything Apart

Merrick's team somehow forgets about Niles, allowing her to return and work with Copley who reveals he just wanted to help people recover from illness ashis wife suffered terribly when she passed years before. He provides Nilesaccess to Merrick's lab and she wages a one-woman war, rekindling her fire forbattle per her Afghanistan days. She eventually frees the other immortals and they forgive Booker as they need all hands on deck for the escape.

They cut a bloody path through the facility and it ends with Andy and Niles confronting Merrick, who's wielding Andy's medieval ax. Andycan't risk getting shot as her immortality is running out, however. But using a "play dead" trick seen earlier in the film, Niles rushes Merrick and takes the bullet, allowing Andy to then grab the ax and plant it into Merrick's neck. Niles then spears him through a window and they fall multiple stories down onto a car. Andy and Co. come down, proud that Niles has embraced her destiny as one of them, with Merrick crushed in a bloody scene.

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The team nurses its wounds but at a meeting deciding Booker's fate, they banish him for a hundred years. They agree to meet at the same bar when that period expires but he admits by then, Andy would be dead as she's lost her power naturally. They hug it out because they've been through a lot together, with Booker also offering Niles advice after she fakes her death and is reported to her family as KIA, just like her dad. From there, she's finally ready to move on and save the world.

This ties into the final scene where Copley shows the immortals their history indicating that they have a higher calling. All the people they've saved went on to make contributions to science, politics and tech, so they are guardian angels of sorts. He can't explain their powers or trace its origins, but it does seem to be divine. Andy concludesby telling him it's time to get back to work and he'll be their handler, wiping digital trails of them and helping find missions that paint them as true social justice warriors.

Starring Charlize Theron, KiKi Layne, Matthias Schoenaerts, Marwan Kenzari, Luca Marinelli, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Harry Melling, The Old Guard is now streaming onNetflix.

KEEP READING:The Old Guard Turns a Stylish Comic Into a Generic Action Movie

Russo Bros Would Love to Tell Captain America's Time Travel Story - But...

I'm a former Chemical Engineer. It was boring so I decided to write about things I love. On the geek side of things, I write about comics, cartoons, video games, television, movies and basically, all things nerdy. I also write about music in terms of punk, indie, hardcore and emo because well, they rock! If you're bored by now, then you also don't want to hear that I write for ESPN on the PR side of things. And yes, I've written sports for them too! Not bad for someone from the Caribbean, eh? To top all this off, I've scribed short films and documentaries, conceptualizing stories and scripts from a human interest and social justice perspective. Business-wise, I make big cheddar (not really) as a copywriter and digital strategist working with some of the top brands in the Latin America region. In closing, let me remind you that the geek shall inherit the Earth. Oh, FYI, I'd love to write the Gargoyles movie for Disney. YOLO.

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Netflix's The Old Guard: The Explosive Ending, Explained | CBR - CBR - Comic Book Resources

Liverpool are five games from immortality, but there are six special ways to achieve it – Liverpool.com

Liverpool's win over Aston Villa on Sunday pushed the club's point total to 89 with five matches remaining. Immortality, going down as the team to finish with the most points in a single Premier League campaign (and they used to play 42 matches!) is now well and truly on the table.

Already, Liverpool's total of 89 points has pushed them past the following all-timers:

Those are some of the finest teams in league history, and Jurgen Klopp's side have already surpassed them with five games to spare. The next goal insight: Man City's Centurions.

City racked up 100 points during the 2017/18 campaign. With five matches left to play, this Liverpool side could end the season with an almost unfathomable 104 points.

After a rocky return to play -- the game that shall not be discussed in Manchester, the plodding performances against Everton and Villa -- it remains an open question whether or not Klopp's side will match or exceed City's record-breakers.

So we asked our writers: Will Liverpool break the record?

Kristian Walsh: I genuinely cant work out Brighton. Are they good? Are they bad? I really like Neal Maupay, and not just because he absolutely fronted Arsenals faux fume after accidentally injuring Bernd Leno. He takes a lot of shots, and Im all for a striker who takes a lot of shots -- providing theyre in decent areas (and judging by his xG, they are).

A lot will depend on Liverpool however, and I think that will be a recurring theme throughout. If Liverpool are motivated, and if Liverpool play their regular game, then they should. Brighton are better than their position suggests -- or so the underlying numbers tell us -- but a team with three or four changes still scrapes through. Liverpool win 2-1.

Joel Rabinowitz: I suspect this one might be a fair bit trickier than many many expect. Brighton are a better side than their league position would suggest, and their expected points total places them somewhere in between Arsenal and Tottenham, as opposed to the teams scrapping for relegation below them. They also made things really quite difficult for Liverpool at Anfield earlier this season, and it required two Van Dijk headers from set pieces to break them down.

All that said, I think Liverpool will have enough to get the three points, but I fully expect theyll be made to work hard for it. Liverpool win 1-0

Dan Morgan: I think this game will come down a lot to team selection, and I expect Liverpool to be strong. There is an argument that Klopp picked his Aston Villa team with his Brighton team in mind, and therefore I expect to see more control in midfield areas especially.

Brighton were strong and well setup when they came to Anfield, but their situation is different now. I think theyll take more risks against this Liverpool side and therefore could be opened up if Liverpool are firing. All that said, Im going for a Liverpool win, and of course Bobby will score away. Liverpool win 3-1

Ollie Connolly: Im with Joel. I think this will be a tough game, particularly with the manager likely to rotate the side. The most notable element of Liverpools post-pause play has been the lack of rhythm when the main first Xi is not in the lineup. Chopping and changing -- a Minamino for Firmino here, Keita for Wijnaldum there -- will inevitably distort the tempo we saw during the home game against Crystal Palace. Performances are likely to take on that Aston Villa-vibe, with excellent 10-minutes bursts surrounded by a heaping of blah. Still: I expect a moment of individual brilliance will be enough to pick up three points. Liverpool win 1-0

Josh Williams: I'd be surprised if Liverpool concede. Brighton are averaging roughly 13 shots per goal in the Premier League this season which is worsened by only Norwich City. They aren't very clinical while Liverpool are the opposite, scoring every 7.1 shots. If Klopp fields his first-choice XI, I'd expect his attack to have enough to find the net at least once, although it's worth noting that the absence of one integral player tends to drastically impact the effectiveness of the Reds in the final third. Liverpool win 2-0

David Hughes: Brighton have avoided relegation whilst implementing a new philosophy at the club under Potter, that will represent a decent season for them. Now, with very little to play for, I dont expect them to cause Liverpool too many issues. Theyre winless against any of the current top six this season (D4, L6), failing to score in six of those matches. There was also an obvious lack of ambition in their 3-0 home defeat to Manchester United last week, a game in which they registered just two shots on target. Liverpool win 3-0

KW: Burnley. The only side who can score against Alisson Becker from a corner, with an assist from the wind (ps: it was also a foul). Actually, Ive just realised weve been saying Alisson hasnt conceded a goal from outside the box in the league since joining Liverpool. Does this not count? Im very confused.

It doesnt happen this time anyway. Klopp plays the same team he did against Aston Villa, it toils for 60, and then the subs change it against the tiring visitors. Again. It wont be pretty. Liverpool win 1-0.

JR: With it being at Anfield and Burnley not really having much to play for at this point, this is probably Liverpools most favourable remaining fixture. That isnt to say Burnley cant put up a decent fight and pose some degree of threat from set piece situations, but Liverpool shouldnt (in theory) have too many problems getting the job done here. Theyll really want to keep that 100% Anfield record going, too. Liverpool win 3-0

DM: Hello darkness my old friend. No matter how good a champion you are, or how bad a season theyve had, theres always something about Burnley visiting which makes your stomach knot. Last season was one of the strangest in living memory with tornado conditions, clearly obstructive goals standing and an Adam Lallana cameo nobody saw coming.

It will be a trickier game than many anticipate, and team selection will be interesting if not crucial. All that said: Liverpool win 2-0

OC: There is a case to be made both ways: Burnley, the bastion of consistency, could turn up looking to muck things up. If Liverpools concentration wains or Jurgen Klopp rotates, theres the formula for a dull draw or a sneaky upset. But at some point, this Burnley side is going to be running on fumes. Theyve been unable to properly rotate given the financial/management difficulties at the club. Being asked to play three matches a week with a squad of only 15 real first-teamers is damn near impossible. Even if Liverpool arent all the way up for this one, I think they cruise to a win. Liverpool win 4-0

JW: Burnley have a knack for securing results despite performing to a relatively average standard in most contents, but they usually need a clean sheet to do so. Keeping Liverpool quiet will be tough and on the attacking side of the game, all but one of the goals that Dyche's team have scored since the restart have derived from set-pieces. The Reds are highly capable when defending corners and freekicks, and Burnley's aerial raid doesn't usually work that well against Liverpool largely due to the dominance of Virgil van Dijk. I can't see the Clarets scoring, but I reckon Klopp's men will have enough - especially at Anfield - to bag at least one themselves. Liverpool win 2-0

DH: Its probably gone under the radar for most, but Burnely are decent again. At the time of writing, they have lost just one of their previous 11 Premier League matches and have an outside shot of securing European football next season. They dont tend to do well against the leagues best on the road though, and you dont face much better than Liverpool at Anfield. They have lost six of their eight away matches vs sides in the top ten and conceded two or more goals in six of those games too. Therefore I anticipate if Liverpool get one, then the floodgates will open. Liverpool win 4-0

KW: Im just imagining the alternate scenario I concocted in my head around February time. Liverpool, champions, and 35 games without a league defeat, head to the home of the Invincibles -- well, sort of, they actually achieved that at Highbury -- in a face-off which would have Sky Sports going montage crazy.

But then, you know. Watford. COVID-19. So Liverpool play out a 1-1 draw to a bunch of red seats, leading to people asking if Arsenal can challenge under Mikel Arteta next season (spoiler: they cant). 1-1 draw

JR: The rational side of me says Liverpool should absolutely be able to go to the Emirates and win, because theyre a far, far superior side to Arsenal in every single department. Theres a very good reason why there are 40 points separating the two sides, after all.

However, for some reason, I have a feeling this might be a bit of a banana skin. After their dismal start to the restart, Arsenal have been much improved over the past few games and looked uncharacteristically resolute in their impressive away victory against Wolves at Molineux.

As much as deep structural issues remain throughout the side, they do still possess genuine quality up front capable of causing almost any team problems if they click, and while theyve only won 12 games from 33 in the league so far this season, they dont actually lose as often as youd think (especially at home). So, as pessimistic as it might sound, Im going for a point here. 2-2 draw

DM: This is interesting for the simple reason of Arsenals performance at Wolves. A 2-0 win away to Nuno Espirito Santos men should not be scoffed at, nor should Mikel Artetas switch to a 3-4-3 shape, with Eddie Nketiah central, Bukayo Saka right and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang right of a front three.

Should he keep that shape, it will either cause Liverpool a raft of problems on turnovers or leave the home side wide open when the Reds retrieve the ball. I have a feeling it might be the latter. In my opinion, if Liverpool score one, Arsenal will implode. Liverpool win 4-0

OC: The start of a tricky double-header. The two questions for me: Will Klopp play his strongest XI in both the Arsenal game and the Chelsea one that follows? Do Arsenal have something tangible to play for? I think the answers are yes and yes.

Arsenals forward line is concerning. Liverpool have been off-the-boil defensively since the restart. Theyve been consistently overwhelmed in the middle of the pitch and have struggled with individuals straying out of position, most notably in transition -- Everton, Man City, Aston Villa. Thats where Arsenal can be ruthless.

With that said, Mikel Artetas team have some almighty defensive challenges of their own. A back-and-forth game would favour Liverpool. Liverpool win 3-1

JW: This one could be tricky. Arteta seems very smart but what will he demand from his players on the day? A high defensive line? Playing out from the back? If so, Liverpool are likely to benefit considering the error-prone defenders that are contracted to Arsenal. The Gunners tend to give away gifts to opposing players close to goal. In attack, Arsenal are surprisingly quiet with Norwich City and Aston Villa averaging more shots per 90 this season, but they do have great quality when it comes to finishing. Liverpool's uninspired performances of late still offer enough to beat most opponents, but Arsenal have enough to punish the Reds if they turn up to the Emirates with the wrong attitude. A lot will be determined by which team scores first in this one. 1-1 draw

DH: Arteta may be early into his tenure as Arsenal boss, but he is already learning some valuable lessons that are paying dividends on the pitch. One of which is protecting the erratic David Luiz with not one but two additional centre-backs. The teams switch to a 3-4-3 after the Brighton defeat looks to be boosting their capacity at both ends of the pitch in recent weeks. They still have a long way to go, but with European places still to play for, I am expecting this one to be tough for the Reds. Draw 2-2

KW: So I make that 96 points with two to play. Eeeeesh. And there will also be the added incentive of Liverpool lifting the Premier League trophy (as Dan mentions) as well as completing the 19-game set. Liverpool are not NOT winning this one. Thats it. Thats my analysis. Liverpool win 2-1.

JR: Chelsea are a mad team under Frank Lampard. Theyve got it in them to beat Manchester City, then theyll go and lose to West Ham the following game, before comfortably dispatching Watford. You just dont know which version will turn up on any given occasion.

If, by the time this one rolls around, Liverpool have beaten Burnley, then theyll be on the brink of becoming the first team in Premier League history to win all 19 home games in a season. That will simultaneously serve as an enormous incentive for Liverpool, but you can imagine Chelsea would absolutely love to be the ones to stop them doing it right at the death. Hopefully my prediction proves to be wrong, but I have a sneaking feeling they might succeed in doing just that. 1-1 draw

DM: Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy, Liverpool are lifting the Premier League trophy. Liverpool win 2-1

OC:I consider myself the Generalissimo of the Frank-Lampard-is-a-fraudulent-manager support group, but Lampards side has had some undeniably impressive performances against big clubs this season. While they lack the consistency to sustain at a high level, theyre capable of brilliant one-off displays. There's just something about Chelsea at Anfield, you know. Liverpool losing their unbeaten home record and then raising the title would feel wrong, so I'll plump for an up-and-down score draw. 1-1 draw

JW: Liverpool have faced Chelsea three times already this season, struggling performance-wise every time. The first meeting in the Premier League was decided by the set-piece expertise of Klopp's outfit, with both goals coming from freekicks in a 2-1 win at Stamford Bridge. The Blues are vulnerable from those situations, with Frank Lampard stating recently that the solution lies with signing 'taller players'. Chelsea are difficult to outplay and they have enough to prevent and hurt Liverpool on their day, especially considering they are still fighting for something meaningful this season. It's Liverpool's final match of the season at Anfield, but it could be the first one that doesn't result in three points being secured. 1-1 draw

DH: This game is by far the hardest to call. With the title in touching distance - literally, its unclear what the psyche of the Liverpool players will be. They put on a show vs Crystal Palace on the eve of their title confirmation at Anfield two weeks ago, and they could well repeat that here. However, should their interest waiver to events after the final whilst, then Chelsea could be the side to ruin their perfect Premier League home record (providing its still intact). All three meetings between the two this season have been settled by fine margins, I expect the same here. Liverpool 2-1

KW: Based on the underlying numbers, Newcastle should be bottom. The fact they sit in mid-table, safe from relegation, is an absolute miracle; one in the eye of all us data boys and girls (although it will bite them terribly next season if they dont splurge 500million if/when the takeover happens). Even since the restart, they are scoring more than they would be expected to, and conceding fewer.

But I just think one last lap will be harder than any of us might imagine. It will be the sixth game in 21 days after a prolonged three-month absence from competitive football. You would imagine Arsenal and Chelsea would be relatively high intensity games, and Newcastle have a few extra days off.

It is going to be a coin flip. 0-0 draw and Liverpool end exactly on 100 points.

JR: St James Park is very rarely an easy place to go, and on the sly Newcastle have been one of the standout teams in the league since the restart, producing a handful of really impressive performances and results (albeit against relatively low quality opposition).

The final day of the season can often produced the unexpected, but if Liverpool have the 100-point mark in their sights by this point, I think theyll give absolutely everything they have to at least equal Citys record and end this historic season with a flourish, even if they cant quite beat it, which would still represent a phenomenal achievement. Liverpool win 4-1 and end on exactly 100 points.

DM: Its after the Lord Mayors show slightly, and lets not forget Newcastle United are not a bad side. The Arsenal and Chelsea dates mean that the likelihood is well be stringent in selection in those games which could lead to mass changes here. It wont finish on a complete low, but I can see this as the only game in which we drop points. Liverpool draw 1-1 and end on exactly 102 points.

OC: By this point, I project Klopp will be happy to cede to a near-complete rotation of the starting XI. If ever there was time to give a full 90 minutes to the likes of Curtis Jones, Kai-Jana Hoever, and Harvey Elliott, it's in a dead rubber at the end of the season against a solid if unspectacular Newcastle team. Rotating would allow Klopp to give a little bit more rest to the key starters ahead of what will be a rapid turn around time before next season. Ideally, the rotation breaths a bit of life into a side that should/might/could be coming off the Arsenal-Chelsea double-header and having raised the trophy at Anfield. A Keita-Minamino double sends Liverpool into next season on a high. Liverpool win 2-1 and end on exactly 102 points.

JW: It's reasonable to suggest that this clash won't be the most competitive considering Newcastle are likely to be positioned in midtable. The Toon have defied logic this season, as their performances simply haven't aligned with their results. Steve Bruce has managed to refine a playing style that largely involves being dominated while retaining a notable threat on the break thanks to the qualities of Allan Saint-Maximin and Miguel Almiron to name but two of the speedy attackers for the Magpies. If Liverpool manage counterattacks and set-pieces, United are unlikely to score, but the Reds will have to find a way through the lowest of blocks. This could be a boring 1-0 but depending on the focus of Bruce's team, it could very easily become a 4-0 drubbing. Liverpool win 2-0 and end on exactly 100 points.

DH: After disliking Newcastle for almost the entirety of the season, I have to hold my hands up and say they have earned my respect. All the underlying numbers point to them being one of the worst sides in the league, but then mind you, they also rank Man City as the best! Ultimately though, Newcastle have done a good job of honing in on their few strengths and grinding out some big results. Theyll likely sit back and frustrate Liverpool (and everyone watching) for 90 minutes whilst trying to get something on the break. Or they may fancy their chances from a set-piece - at the time of writing, they have scored as many set-piece goals as Liverpool with 12, which is impressive. But I suspect Liverpool may want to finish with a bang here and I back them to do it. Liverpool 3-1 and end on exactly 102 points.

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Liverpool are five games from immortality, but there are six special ways to achieve it - Liverpool.com

Warrior Nun Ending Explained What Happens to Ava and Adriel at the End of Warrior Nun? – Esquire.com

Warrior Nun. It's a show about warriors who are also nuns. Pretty simple stuff, right? But for a show with a two-word premise, things get pretty complicated over the course of the Netflix series' 10-episode first season.

The show tells the story of Ava, a 19-year-old ward of a Catholic orphanage who is implanted with the angel Adriel's halo and finds herself imbued with mystical powers. It turns out that she's the latest in a 1,000-year-old line of women who've borne the halo, women who have all been nuns of the Order of Cruciform sword. Here's how the story shakes out in the end.

Throughout the first half of the season, Ava grapples with her newfound powers and debates whether or not she wants to align herself with the OCS. But by the end of the season, she's decided to team up with Father Vincent, Shotgun Mary, Sister Beatrice, and the rest of the warrior sisters. Inventor Jillian Salvius, who has built a portal to other realms called the Ark with the help of the mystical element divinium, initially seemed to be the Big Bad, but was revealed to be doing her research to help her ailing son Michael, and she too teams up with the OCS.

Instead, the real problem player is Cardinal Duretti. The OCS pieces together that he was behind the killing of prior halo bearer Sister Shannon. He wants the halo to pass to someone loyal to him, as he needs to use its power to allow its bearer to pass through walls to enter the tomb of Adriel. The angel gave up his divine immortality when he gave his halo to Areala, the original warrior nun, and now his bones lie in the catacombs of the Vatican, behind a stone wall that's 20 feet deep. His remains are said to have the power to make whoever controls them the "lord of demon kind," and Duretti, who's elected to Pope near the end of the season, seems to like the sound of that. So the OCS heads off to Adriel's tomb to foil Duretti's evil plan.

Courtesy of NETFLIX

Ava, Father Vincent, and the sisters locate the tomb, and, pumped up from a phasing workout regimen, Ava successfully travels through the stone. Inside, she finds not Adriel's bones, but Adriel himself. As it turns out, he never lost his immortality, and has been trapped there for centuries.

At first, Ava and Adriel are pretty chummyhe's an angel, she's pretty much a novitiate, it's a match made in heaven. But when Adriel touches her, Ava receives flashes from Areala's memories that make her suspicious. When Adriel tries to take the halo from her, she blasts him with its power, just as the OCS dynamites its way in and saves her.

Meanwhile, Mother Superion confronts now-Pope Duretti, only to find out that he has no clue about the killing of Sister Shannon or the underground tomb. He's not the bad guyand Adriel's no angel. Ava reveals to the team that Adriel is in fact a devil. Father Vincent calls the newly-freed Adriel his master and tells him that his machinepresumably the Ark, which Michael has just leapt into, bound for dimensions unknownis waiting for him. Vincent killed Shannon, and he's been the baddie all along.

The sisters fight Adriel while Ava waits for her halo to recharge its mystical batteries, but Adriel summons an army of demons who posses the bystanders and swarm the women. And that's where the season ends! The fate of the OCS, the duplicitous Father Vincent, and little Michael, wherever he is, will have to wait for season two.

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Warrior Nun Ending Explained What Happens to Ava and Adriel at the End of Warrior Nun? - Esquire.com

This One Activity Ticks Off 3 of the Blue Zones Markers of Longevity – Well+Good

People who live in the worlds Blue Zoneslike Sardinia, Italy and Okinawa, Japanhave perfected the art of staying alive and well. Longevity expert Dan Buettner, author of The Blue Zones Kitchen, has made studying these superhumans and their wellness practices his lifes work. During a recent online master class on all things immortality (I mean, er, longevity) hosted by the Global Wellness Institute, Buettner said that one everyday outdoor activity sets the folks in the Blue Zones up for thriving well into their triple-digits: gardening.

[In] all Blue Zones, people continue to garden even into their 90s and 100s, said Buettner. Gardening is the epitome of a Blue Zone activity because its sort of a nudge: You plant the seeds and youre going to be nudged in the next three to four months to water it, weed it, harvest it. And when youre done, youre going to eat an organic vegetable, which you presumably like because you planted it. That means gardening hits three of the nine Blue Zones pillars of healthy living in just one activity: one, move naturally; two, manage your stress; and three, eat mostly plants.

Gardening ticks the first box, move naturally, because it calls for incorporating movement into your daily tasks (like walking to work or biking to the grocery store) rather than, say, setting aside an hour aside for a HIIT workout. As Emily Kiberd, DC, founder of New York CitysUrban Wellness Clinic, previously told Well+Good: Their lives are dynamic. Not a constant go, go, go, but a mix of movement, then rest. You can water your plants, then dive back into the book you were reading or go back to work with the energy granted to you by a small burst of movement.

Meanwhile, research has also suggested that planting flowers, herbs, or fruits and veggies also plants the seeds for good mental health (fulfilling that second Blue Zones pillar). Gardening has been found to delay symptoms of dementia. Green exercise, aka doing physical activity while exposed to or in nature, has been linked to longevity, and theres no discounting the fact that youll quickly rack up your 150 minutes of government-recommended exercise each week as you tend to your plant babies (which is also a win for your brains well-being).

Last, but certainly not least, is the fact that having a garden make it easier to access fresh, whole foods. As Buettner pointed out, planting your own fruits and veggies delivers you one step closer to actually eating them. What you do choose to plant and harvest will contribute to the overall diversity of your diet. That a big deal, when you consider that 2018 research found that people with the healthiest, most diverse guts ate 30 or more different types of plants per week. Plant your garden right, and at least a large fraction of the gut-friendly plants in your diet could be hand-grown.

If you dont know the first thing about buying seeds, soil, fertilizer, and all that jazz, remember that gardening doesnt have to be as complicated as purchasing an acre of farmland. For one thing, you could try sprouting: an easy, indoor method for growing your own grains, beans, legumes, or veggies. This also allows you to eat your plants when theyre young and thus more nutrient-dense than they would be otherwise.

If you have some backyard or balcony space and thus have more room for planting (either in the ground or in planters), consider this your motivation to brush up on the basics of not-killing-things and really do your research as far as what should be planted when, how the heck you should water your little seeds, and the perfect sunlight-to-shade ratio. To really feel like youre becoming a student of the plant kingdom, you can even sign up for one of these online gardening workshops to make your love for the activity blossom.

Should you find yourself feeling stuck, just remember: The people of the Blue Zones had to start from scratch to earn the green thumbs they have today. And hey, with any luck, youll have one hundred years to learn how to plant, care for, harvest, and eat the perfect tomato.

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This One Activity Ticks Off 3 of the Blue Zones Markers of Longevity - Well+Good

To Create Is To Live Forever: Jo Walton’s Or What You Will – tor.com

Sylvia is a writer nearing the end of her life. Widowed with two daughters whom she loves but is distant with, with over thirty novels written to her name, and with one last book in her, she is making peace with her death, the end of it all. Only theres someone in her life who wont let her go; a character in her mind, who has been in nearly every story shes written, a nameless man who has been with her almost every step of the way. And if she dies without putting him in a book for real, then he will die along with her, trapped in her skull. Thus begins Jo Waltons Or What You Will, a book about books, about art, about writing and creation, and how in the act of creating, we work towards immortality.

This is a delightful, odd book, and I was by turns fascinated, enthralled, and a little confused, but ultimately happy with the twists and turns of the text. Walton combines many of her passions into this story, and you will find yourself at times going on digressions with her, as our unnamed narrator delves into the importance and meaning of various works of art, restaurants and ways of preparing food, the creative works of Renaissance Italy, as well as what can almost be described as Shakespearean fanfic, of characters from Twelfth Night and The Tempest finding new life after their endings in Sylvias last book shes working on, a fictionalized version of Shakespeares Italy, where characters from both works interact, love, cherish, hate, and exist together. If you think there are layers to this story, dont worry, there absolutely are. But while the meta-commentary can be a lot, and the digressions entertaining but seemingly without reason, the two combine artfully. For there is a third narrative here, and its of our unnamed protagonist inside Sylvias head telling us, the reader of this book, about Sylvia. In his gambit to immortalize her, he must tell us of her, as much as she finds it irksome when he does.

Through him we meet Sylvia, a writer of science fiction and fantasy, who has opinions on Worldcons, who is not close with her remaining family save one member, who has been through hell in a specific way, and found love in the climb out. Sylvia, who our unnamed protagonist loves and cherishes and is terrified of, for she is god to him, and can erase him with but a thought. Sylvia, who is dying and wont tell him. Sylvia, who knows his plan to smuggle her into her own story, who knows he is doing so because he wants the same for himself, and humors him because why not? I found this one of the strongest aspects of the book itself, for after affairs of state in Thalia (the imagined Italy of Sylvias book), and after the lessons on art and architecture, after all that, is a writer who is trying to come to terms with her own end, and the beloved character of her imagination who wont let her go. It develops into the beating heart of the novel, and soon, all these strands began to braid together in a final gambit to save the god who has meant so much to him, and in doing so, maybe save himself.

Or What You Will is the sort of book that may be doing a bit too much at any given time, but youd never fault it for that. As a treatise on art, and the things we make, and the love we put into making them as we hope they will outlive us, Walton must. She must spin multiple plates, each of them rich moments of drama or education, or relationships, because this is the sort of book that demands that level of richness. If one is to pursue immortality, nothing can be left on the table; all the love one has for the world, for art, for pain, for family and friends, for story, it all must go into the cauldron and hope it is enough to summon you to the next world, to life everlasting. This richness is in service to knowing Sylvia, to understanding her wants and needs, knowing her pain and what she has survived to get here. And it works. By the end of the novel, whether it succeeds in the novel or not, you, the reader, know her. You, the reader, know Thalia and its magic, its inhabitants, the new lives of Duke Orsino and Caliban and Viola and Miranda, and yes, our unnamed narrator, who has worked so hard to imprint on you, the reader, the important of it all.

Because if you, the reader, know all this, it means you know Sylvia. And if you know Sylvia, reader, then she can never die. And neither can he. Across metatextual layers, Walton accomplishes what she sets out to do, and in some ways, it may not matter if it truly happens in the story. Sylvia and our narrator, through the act of reading, knowing, and empathy, become real. And thats what matters. That is how they, and any of us, may live forever. Or What You Will may be at times quirky and rambling, but it truly captures the heart of what it means to make art, to tell stories, and why those things are so important. I can honestly say Ive never read another novel like it, and Im very glad, in reading it, to have had the chance to do my small part in contributing to immortality.

Or What You Will is available from Tor Books.

Martin Cahill is a contributor to Tor.com, as well as Book Riot and Strange Horizons. He has fiction forthcoming at Beneath Ceaseless Skies and Fireside Fiction. You can follow his musings on Twitter @McflyCahill90.

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To Create Is To Live Forever: Jo Walton's Or What You Will - tor.com

Adventure Time: 5 Reasons Why Princess Bubblegum & Marceline Are Perfect Together (& 5 Why They’re Not) – Screen Rant

Marceline and Princess Bubblegum spent years in limbo. Scenes depicting the slow growth of their romance were subtle. Fans were divided based on whether they saw the relationship as a simple friendship or something more intimate. The finale kiss scene settled all arguments and just about everyone was overjoyed to see the couple confirmed.

RELATED: Adventure Time: 10 Classic Hilarious Memes From The Show's Heyday, Ranked

The years that it took for the writers to confirm Bubbline make people hesitant to admit that the pairing has its flaws. But, Marceline and Bubblegum spent half the series arguing. When their rivalry turned to romance, the impact on the overall story was immense. Factors like this leave the fanbase divided on this couple yet again.

Marceline stopped aging when she became an immortal vampire. Its confirmed that Princess Bubblegum lives longer than humans since she was already over 800 years old at the start of the series. In Mortal Recoil she chose to regress to age 13, implying that she doesnt have to age at all.

Immortality comes with many goodbyes as mortal friends pass away. Marceline and Princess Bubblegum will never have to cause each other that kind of pain. They can take comfort in the fact that their love is eternal.

Managing the Candy Kingdom takes up the majority of Princess Bubblegums time. She devotes herself to keeping her people safe fromthreats like Gumbald. What free time shedoes haveis dedicated to science. That lives little to no room for relationships.

Bubblegum implied that this contributed toherabrupt separation from Marcelinein Varmints. The disagreements that occurin normal relationships would add to her abnormally high-stress levels. When factoring in Marcelinestemperamentalnature, the pressure on Princess Bubblegum would be even worse.

Princess Bubblegum has the entireCandy Kingdom to worry about protecting. While other characters, likeLady Reinicornand Lady Space Princess, help her when possible, theyre free to come and go as they please.

RELATED:Adventure Time: 10 Side Characters Who Deserved Their Own Spin-Off

Marceline the Vampire Queen can relate to Bubblegums struggles, even though she isnt royalty in the traditional sense. She became queen by slaughtering all of the vampires in existence. Twice. She was bitten in the process, thereby sacrificing her own humanity to protect humankind. By the end of it all, she was the queen of a dead empire. Marceline is totally capable of understanding the challenges Bubblegum faces.

The breakup happened for a reason. Issues that revolve around personality flaws rather than outside forces don't just disappear. The problems that caused Marceline and Princess Bubblegums breakup were a mix of the two.

Bubblegum struggledto communicate herworries to Marcelineas the pressures of her princess role increased. After the couple reconciled, the same problem cropped up again when Princess Bubblegum didnt notify Marceline that shed been usurped by the King of Ooo. Marcelines passive-aggressive reactions to the situation helped turn their broken relationship into a rivalry. Neither woman has completely overcome these flaws by the end of Adventure Time.

These two women are nothing alike in personality, which is why they mitigate each othersfaults so effectively. Princess Bubblegum resorted to atrocities to protect the people of the Candy Kingdom. Stress from such unwinnable situations made her uptight and reserved, despite her overall kindness.

RELATED:The Myers-Briggs Personality Types Of Adventure Time Characters

Marceline, on the other hand, is a carefree soul. She encourages spontaneity and her unrestrained emotions force Princess Bubblegum to confront her own. Bubblegum returns the favor by giving Marceline someone to care about again. Without family or purpose, Marcelinewas spiraling out of control until Bubblegum came to ground her.

One of the reasons fans struggle to support the relationship between Princess Bubblegum and Marceline is because it required the sacrifice of theirother friendships. In every episode whereBubblegum and Marceline were shown together, they refused to be separated. Friendly scenes between Finn and Bubblegum grew more sparse. The romance overtook Marceline's entire storyline, leaving her with nothing that wasn't also Bubblegum's.

Itis not only disappointing for viewers to watch, but also unhealthyfrom a relationship standpoint. This couple is nearing dangerous levels of codependence.

Its unclear how far back the history goes between Bubblegum and Marceline, but it is long and winding. Theyknew each other long enough to fall in love before Bubblegum could take the throne. Constant references are made to their shared past.Writers mention the shirt that Marceline gave to Bubblegum and the time they spent together in the mines.

Events like these are so intimatethat theyre rarely discussed with the other characters. Even the audience is left in the dark on most of it. A bond like this cant be easily recreated in a new relationship.

All of the main characters explore romantic relationships throughout the series. There are mentions of exes from the past, too. Though neither Princess Bubblegum nor Marceline seems to have dated anyone else for long. They never had the opportunity to discover a better match. After the breakup, they were still too obsessed with each other to take their suitors seriously.

Their inexperiencealso comes into play when talking about dating women. No lesbian relationships are brought up beyond the one Bubblegum and Marceline share.Failing to explore these avenues now could result in future regrets.

Couples struggle to keep things fresh after a few years. These women have managed for centuries. The clashes of their contrasting personalities provide them with endless entertainment and the love between them never grows old. Even when they were on bad terms with each other, presumably for years, Bubblegum kept souvenirs from their relationship and Marceline wrote songs about their love.

Theyve proven themselves incapable of total separation. That isnt the worst character flaw since both their lives are much better when theyre together.

The most common issue anti-Bubbline fans have with the relationship is that they were given no indicators to help prepare them for it. They claim the two women were depicted as close friends and nothing more. It makes the finale kiss feel out of character. If Princess Bubblegum and Marcelinemust be written out of character to be written into a relationship, they shouldnt be in one at all.

However, other fans cite thegradualreveal of their romantic feelings as the characteristic that makes Bubbline the most well-written LGBT+ relationship in the animated world.

NEXT:Adventure Time: 5 Things We Want To See From The HBO Max Specials (& 5 That We Don't)

Next The Umbrella Academy: The 5 Biggest Mysteries That Were Solved In Season 1 (& 5 That Weren't)

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Adventure Time: 5 Reasons Why Princess Bubblegum & Marceline Are Perfect Together (& 5 Why They're Not) - Screen Rant

The Quarantine Stream: ‘Doctor Who’ is a Compassionate Sci-Fi Series That Doesn’t Really Care About the Sci-Fi Part – /FILM

(Welcome toThe Quarantine Stream, a new series where the /Film team shares what theyve been watching while social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.)

The Series:Doctor Who

Where You Can Stream It: HBO Max

The Pitch: A hyperintellectual alien travels through time and space (though more often than not, to 21stcentury Britain) in a spaceship shaped like a 1960s British police box, going on wacky misadventures with his/her spunky human companions.

Why Its Essential Viewing:Doctor Whois often described in reverent terms as the longest-running sci-fi TV series in history.But to categorize this wonderful, baffling, silly, stupendous show as science-fiction wouldnt do it, or the genre, justice. Sci-fi is really just an umbrella for the famous BBC seriesto play with genre and structure it can be a character drama one episode, a campy comedy the next, a mythic fairy tale, a Gothic horror tale. Sure, theres a loose continuity that runs all the way back to the beginning of the show, but none of that matters. All that matters is that theres a quirky alien who goes around battling monsters and saving the day with his big old brain and a whole lotta heart (two of them, in fact).

With a 57-year run and multiple actors, showrunners, and spin-offs, getting intoDoctor Whocan be a bit daunting. (If youre intimidated, dive intoDoctor Whostarting with the 2005 revival, or read our handy guide.)Centering around an alien protagonist known as only the Doctor, the title character has the ability to change into an entirely different person every time he dies in a process called regeneration a neat trick that basically grants him immortality, and grants the series an eternal lifespan with 13 actors now having played the Doctor.But the brilliant conceit ofDoctor Whois that you could feasibly jump into any episode and get the gist.

One episode, the Doctor may be battling killer robots in contemporary London; another, looking for ghosts with Charles Dickens; or another, stuck on a train on a diamond planet attempting to outwit an invisible entity that feeds on the paranoia of the surrounding passengers. You never know what to expect when you tune into an episode ofDoctor Who, which is only limited by the imaginations of its writers, and, of course, by the very limited budget of the BBC. Its the perfect blank slate for great genre storytelling, and while that storytelling isnt often great (in fact, its more often not),Doctor Who never feels stale thanks to its evolving nature. Its a show that constantly reinvents itself, as its title character does since the show was revived in 2005, it has been a campy horror series, and a soap opera, and a fairy tale.

But despite the fact that change is built into this shows DNA,Doctor Who always feels inarguably Doctor Who. Thats because no matter how many times itreinvents itself,Doctor Whois at its core a sci-fi series about love and empathy. It has a protagonist who sometimes acts a little too cold and alien, but who cares so deeply that they will inspire those around them to show the best of humanity. Its hopelessly sentimental and optimistic, but dont we need a little bit of that nowadays?

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The Quarantine Stream: 'Doctor Who' is a Compassionate Sci-Fi Series That Doesn't Really Care About the Sci-Fi Part - /FILM

New Technology Shouldn’t be the Focus of RPGs, According to Obsidian – COGconnected

With the next-gen consoles Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X waiting on the horizons, its easy to get caught up in all the hype about all the new tech. But Feargus Urquhart, the CEO of Obsidian and an RPG dev since 1997, wants to remind people that tech comes very last in terms of crafting an interesting RPG.

I think its true if you look back on it. All these games that come out when consoles are released that exploits all the new tech generates a lot of buzz, but never leave behind a legacy. How many games become a classic for their graphics or load times? Those things age quick. But good gameplay, interesting story, compelling characters? Thats immortality right there.

Feargus Urquhart says with Obsidian, the rise of PlayStation5 and Xbox Series X barely affects how they make games. He states,(RPGs) always has to go back to characters, story, reactivity and agency. And that has to be irrespective of technology.

I think its super important to those who are going out and getting new consoles, that they feel good about the games that they are buying on them. When we are eventually working on those, we will look at how to balance between the different generations of hardware. But what is super important to me is that it is not a different experience. Its not a case of you get half the quests. The idea is that it has to be that same Obsidian experience no matter what platform it is on.

New technology will always come out and they will change how we play games. But I think the fact that there are still many classics that wed rather play over and over again rather than the yearly releases stands as a testament that you cant rely on technology to create art.

Source: Games Industry

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New Technology Shouldn't be the Focus of RPGs, According to Obsidian - COGconnected

Black deaths matter: The centuries-old struggle to memorialize slaves and victims of racism – The Conversation US

In an open lot just a block or so from where George Floyd was killed while being detained by officers, 100 plastic headstones were carefully placed.

Created by artists Anna Barber and Connor Wright, the Say Their Names Cemetery sprung up in south Minneapolis in early June, as protests over police brutality prompted a more wide-ranging conversation over the legacy of slavery and racism in the United States.

Each headstone documents a victim of police violence their name, age, date and location of death. Accompanying the biographical information reads a simple epitaph: Rest in Power a reworking of rest in peace that has gained popularity among Black Lives Matter activists and supporters to commemorate the dead.

The cemetery forms part of a wider #SayTheirNames campaign aimed at resisting the public erasure of dead victims of brutality.

I study death rituals in the U.S. Scholars in my field have long argued that Black and African American commemorative practices are important in asserting the personhood of the deceased and maintaining and celebrating community. They have been used to proclaim Black autonomy at times when society has infringed upon the rights of Black people.

The fight to remember those killed by violence has roots in the history of slave cemeteries and burial practices. The enslaved were often limited in their choice of burial grounds, especially on rural Southern plantations. White owners relegated their cemeteries to marginal land that could not be cultivated. Many burials were marked only with a wooden post.

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Yet, enslaved communities were often allowed to bury and commemorate their dead, and these funerals were, in the words of historian David Roediger, value-laden and unifying social events that allowed for communal expression. Slavery made Black bodies into financial assets. In contrast, Black commemoration of the dead acknowledged their social relationships and the value of their lives.

Marking the graves of the dead with natural or man-made objects could carry tremendous spiritual meaning for the enslaved, sometimes evoking African precedents. In the Central African Bakongo tradition, the burial place was considered a portal between the living and the dead; objects left on the grave could serve as charms to communicate with and assist the spirit in its transition to the afterlife.

Such traditions appeared on American plantation burials as well, as mourners would leave items that had physical connection with the deceased, such as plates and cups.

There were other practices as well, such as putting items with an association with water, including shells and pitchers, close to graves. These reflected a belief in the association between water and the souls immortality and metaphysical crossing.

Such practices in America also helped to construct an African diaspora culture that celebrated Black humanity under a labor system that tried to systematically dehumanize the enslaved.

The absence of recognizable markers on enslaved burials today does not necessarily mean the dead were unacknowledged.

In some instances, grave markers are hidden in plain sight: Scholars have noted the common presence of periwinkle, cedar trees, yucca and other plantings, suggesting that some Black communities employed a botanical language of grave marking. Some of these plants may have been used for their symbolism, or for their visibility, standing out against an areas native plant life.

In other cases, enslaved communities marked burials with common fieldstones. Although not inscribed, these stones nonetheless provided some form of physical acknowledgment of the dead.

For example, the cemetery at Avoca plantation, near Lynchburg, Virginia, contains several irregular stones that appear to have been placed on the site. The cemetery also contains two pieces of pink quartz, which may indicate the burial of children, scholars believe.

Plantations owners and their families, however, often were laid to rest in family cemeteries. At Avoca, the family burial ground is defined by a low stone wall, and many of the people interred there received a formal stone marker of some kind. This feature conveys a sense of permanence that is often lacking in enslaved peoples cemeteries.

There are some instances of stone markers in Black cemeteries from the antebellum period. One of the most well-known Black burial grounds lies in Newport, Rhode Island. Newport had a sizable community of free and enslaved Africans and African Americans in the colonial period.

Known as Gods Little Acre, the sites headstones serve as a remarkable testament of African identity, perseverance and memory, according to the cemeterys website. Both enslaved and free members of the Newport community received markers.

Some of the stones acknowledge the deceaseds African heritage; others were paid for by the deceaseds owners. Several of the Newport markers were made by enslaved African stonecutters a mason known as Pompe Stevens signed at least two of his works, one of which was for his brothers grave.

As political and social inequality continued into the 19th century, communal burial grounds remained important places for expressing the value of Black lives.

In 1807, men and women affiliated with the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Baltimore founded the African Burying Ground which exists today as the renamed Mount Auburn Cemetery. As historian Kami Fletcher argues, the cemetery was founded as the simultaneous call for freedom and humanity as well as a call for actualized burial rights for Black people and people of color.

The cemetery let the local Black community bury its dead in ways that were significantly different from burials on nearby plantations: The dead could be named, placed near family and interred in land owned by their own community.

In recent years there have been efforts to locate and restore enslaved cemeteries that have been lost or threatened by development. This work exists in many forms, from the African Burial Ground National Monument in New York City to smaller cemeteries documented by archaeologists and local organizations. Universities and former plantations have made the effort to search for, and commemorate, slave cemeteries.

New discoveries of remains continue to raise questions about how to appropriately honor burial sites and the painful histories they represent. Even at sites where the names of the dead are lost, historical interpretation, digital projects and public education can act as long overdue markings of the dead.

As Minneapolis temporary Say Their Names Cemetery hints at, commemoration is not an apolitical act. Remembering those lost to violence whether that of slavery or of unchecked police power is important. It can serve as a reminder for the need for political and legislative change, led by communities who have spent centuries asserting the value of both Black lives and Black deaths.

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Black deaths matter: The centuries-old struggle to memorialize slaves and victims of racism - The Conversation US

Whats New on Netflix UK Today: July 10th, 2020 – What’s on Netflix

There are ten new additions to look forward to watching on Netflix UK this weekend. Heres whats new on Netflix UK for July 10th, 2020.

First of all, here are the top highlights on Netflix UK Today:

Director: Gina Prince-BythewoodGenre: Action, Fantasy | Runtime: 125 MinutesCast: Charlize Theron, KiKi Layne, Matthias Schoenaerts, Marwan Kenzari, Luca Marinelli

Without a Marvel or DC extravaganza to keep you occupied this Summer, instead, Netflix offers you its latest comic-book adaptation, The Old Guard. A potential smash hit for the summer, we expect to see The Old Guard claim the most popular spots this weekend.

Centuries-old, a group of immortals capable of healing from any wound, have made a name for themselves as the perfect guns for hire. Just as another immortal is awakened, they discover that the secret of their immortality has been exposed, and must now fight to keep their freedom.

Seasons: 8 | Episodes: 1Genre: Documentary | Runtime: 33-46 minutes

In his first-ever Netflix Original, Zac Efron travels the globe wit wellness expert Darin Olien in search of healthy and sustainable ways of living.

You know the story Mission: Impossible Fallout and Unsolved Mysteries continue their dominance at the top.

What are you going to be watching on Netflix UK this weekend? Let us know in the comments below!

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Whats New on Netflix UK Today: July 10th, 2020 - What's on Netflix

What happens when a researcher tries to resurrect a loved one? – New Scientist News

In the film Archive, George Almore attempts to put his late wife's memories into a machine. The project is far from a roaring success, finds Jon O'Brien

By Jon O'Brien

Courtesy of Vertical Entertainment

Film

Archive

Gavin Rothery

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Available on demand from 10 July

HE WHO remains passive when overwhelmed with grief loses his best chance of recovering elasticity of mind, Charles Darwin once wrote.

Passiveness certainly isnt a trait that can be attributed to Archives leading man George Almore (Theo James). He is a bereaved researcher secretly attempting to resurrect his wife, played by Stacy Martin, using analogue memories and robotics.

We meet George in 2038, two years and two prototypes into his mission. He has produced J1, a boxy, WALL-E-esque figure that is slightly rigid and watches vintage cartoons, and V2, its more advanced sister with a jealous streak.

Holed up in an isolated facility deep in the heart of Japans snow-capped Yamanashi prefecture, George must care for these specimens of deep-tiered machine learning and artificial intelligence while keeping his project a secret.

Having lived through the road accident that killed his beloved, Almore cuts an enigmatic yet often sympathetic figure. He has genuine compassion for the robots, all too aware they are essentially failed experiments. And there is a palpable survivors guilt driving his mission.

Though the film is very much about Almore, there are other good characters too. Take the hard-nosed, hologrammed vice president (Rhona Mitra), for example, who is threatening to withdraw funding from the project providing Almores cover. Theres also Toby Joness inquisitive company representative, who suspects that the 200 hours of posthumous conversation data from Almores wife is being misused. Oh, and lets not forget the gun-toting risk-assessor, played by Peter Ferdinando.

Almore has genuine compassion for the robots, all too aware they are essentially failed experiments

The film will inevitably be compared with an episode of Black Mirror called Be Right Back, in which a widow revives her partner, who died in a car crash, using a mail-ordered digital consciousness.

Archive, however, focuses just as much on the mechanics behind the concept as its implications. Version 3.0 of Almores robot wife turns out to be difficult for him to control. Her construction from confused, disembodied head and torso to fully realised ghost-white being is also remarkable, and sometimes very disturbing to observe.

This is a feature-length debut for writer and director Gavin Rothery. His only previous sci-fi work was a 2014 short called The Last Man, in which a soldier is awoken into a war-ravaged world. Rothery also supervised the visual effects on Moon, including parts of the eerie mining facility that the film is set in.

While it doesnt quite hit all of the heights that it could, Archive is an entertaining watch. Its clever ruminations on free will, grief and immortality provide an immersive and visceral experience one that, like its protagonist, is anything but passive.

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What happens when a researcher tries to resurrect a loved one? - New Scientist News

Life in a pandemic: "Is this the new normal and how do we cope?" – The Lawton Constitution

As the U.S. death toll of COVID-19 passes 134,000, its not just the medical aspects of the disease that are reshaping society.

Millions are wearing masks and making sure theyre standing 6 feet from everyone else in sight and millions wouldnt be caught dead in a mask, so to speak. Hugs are in short supply. What will the next school year bring? Whats safe and whats not? Politics influences what people believe about the pandemic, and vice versa. Is this the new normal way of life or is this the new normal for now?

To seek further insight into how all this is affecting us, The Constitution spoke with Stephanie Stern and her husband, William Stern, both instructors in the Psychology Department at Cameron University. William Stern is also part of the universitys social sciences program.

Stephanie Stern said a big area of concern is the pandemics impact on mental health. Many people are isolated and anxious, and they can be stuck at home in potentially harmful environments. That can have a long-term effect. Much like the virus, it, too, is invisible.

We will possibly see an increase in depression and anxiety-related disorders, as well as interpersonal issues, she said. We already have problems in our country when it comes to accessing mental health care and stigma surrounding seeking help. The pandemic will likely exacerbate some of those problems.

Shutting people away in their homes with little contact can take a big toll on mental health, William Stern said, calling it a case of the cure being worse than the disease.

People crave contact with others, and anything that limits that contact is going to be difficult for us to deal with, he said.

The mixed messages from the government and health professionals come at an already hot moment politically. In many ways, the rationale that pushes one to seek alternative information or to defend bad information with bravado could be a manifestation of a subconscious fear of mortality, according to William Stern. It fits the model of Terror Management Theory.

The basic idea of the theory is that when people are made aware of the fact that their death is inevitable, they become anxious and attempt to reduce that anxiety, he said. Traditionally, we can make ourselves feel better by reaffirming belief in customs that might offer a form of immortality such as religion, family memories or leaving a legacy.

Those who subscribe to conspiracy theories about the virus and its nature are doing so to reaffirm a sense of certainty in a very uncertain time, he said. It satisfies a need for closure that can help make sense of the world.

When people dont follow the guidelines, Stephanie Stern said, its an example of the tragedy of commons. When a person feels its all right to bend the rules or make exceptions here and there, that person fails to look at the bigger picture. What if everyone followed that same logic?

People, even people who might think they are taking precautions seriously, make these one-time or one-person exceptions and the impact spirals from there, she said.

The need to belong and to interact with others is innately human. Thats why, she said, people have found ways to adapt in different ways to satisfy the need for interaction with others.

As a society, we need to focus on providing for these needs, as well as others, in a way that keeps the greatest number of people safe, she said. Unfortunately, this need might also be another reason why many people have had such a hard time following social distancing rules, likely leading to an extended period during which we will need to follow social distancing guidelines.

William Stern said many people who take the latter tack are probably not engaging in those activities because they dont care about their health. It can help cause an unease that is subconscious. It brings an added stress to those working in those environments, as well.

There are several ways to reduce this unpleasant feeling, and this is probably why we see individuals rationalizing their actions by downplaying the seriousness of the virus and the effectiveness of safety precautions, he said. Their attitude about the virus changes to the point that they feel it is blown out of proportion and really not very dangerous. This allows them to justify their behaviors and avoid feeling bad about taking risks related to the disease.

As American s face health and economic fears brought on by the pandemic, it also appears to be a time of reckoning about race relations. It can be a lot for anyone to take in, William Stern said, and after dealing with a pandemic for months, peoples fuses are much shorter.

Stephanie Stern said people are struggling and deficits in intellectual humility are out in the open.

Intellectual humility refers to our ability to be comfortable being wrong or having our beliefs challenged, she said. You take people low in intellectual humility, who are already frustrated because of their response to COVID-19, and add another way in which they are being told they are wrong. Youre going to get anger and defensiveness. Youre going to get a response that is potentially stronger than it would have been had these events happened in isolation.

Adding to the confusion and fear, according to the Sterns, is the variance of information and where its found.

Stephanie Stern said people are suffering from what social psychologists call confirmation bias in which people find information to support their preconceived notions. As a scientist, she believes its important for society to build opinions on empirical evidence instead of political or personal feelings.

We tend to ignore or invalidate information contrary to how we already feel, she said. Understanding that we all engage in this biased sway of thinking can help us be better at seeking reliable and holistic information.

A solution William Stern offers is to have unbiased platforms for information that can be trusted. He said mistrust of traditional media outlets has led to people finding sources of less-than-trustworthy information. He believes education can play an important role in finding common ground for factual information. With the rise of 24-hour news cycles and the internet, its easy to fall into an echo chamber.

Critical thinking isnt something you are born with, he said. It is a skill that has to be learned and practiced. In this information-rich world, students at all levels of the educational system should be challenged to analyze the source of information.

He believes there is hope with younger generations who have grown up with the internet.

Ironically, they seem less at risk of believing everything they read than the older generations who often issue such warnings, he said. However, none of us is immune to misinformation, and its important to always remember that exceptional claims require exceptional evidence.

But, as with most things, the Sterns believe this, too, shall pass regarding the uncertainty of our new normal.

William Stern believes that we will adapt with the things that will remain once a vaccine is found and the virus is finally under control. He said there are things that have already changed that are for the good, such as employees and employers learning that telecommuting isnt such a bad thing.

As difficult as it has been to deal with at time, it is important to remember that pandemics dont last forever, he said. Eventually the virus will be controlled to the point where normal life can resume.

Humanity has a desire for continuity or for things to remain the same, according to Stephanie Stern. But we live in a constantly changing world and that causes its own distress.

The good news is that we do tend to adapt, she said. That being said, there are certain outcomes of the pandemic that we need to address as soon as possible.

She said it will take some time and there will be a very real impact, from mental health to the educational system. She said there will be a strain on individuals, teachers and mental health care workers that will likely take a while to recover from. Supporting public access to good mental health care as well as destigmatizing those seeking help is a great start.

Events like this have a tendency to reveal the cracks in our system, she said, and, for better or worse, things do not always go back to the way they were.

Written by Scott Rains: scott.rains@swoknews.com.

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Life in a pandemic: "Is this the new normal and how do we cope?" - The Lawton Constitution

A Short History of The Old Guard Comic Universe – Vulture

All the character backstories you need. Photo: Courtesy of Netflix

Netflixs The Old Guard introduces a familiar, covert group of unkillable soldiers, but itd be hard to classify it as a typical comic-book adaptation. Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood with a screenplay by the comics writer, Greg Rucka, The Old Guard focuses on the relationships between these eternal characters and the ways theyve lost faith in a world that refuses to change for the better. Its an action movie with more intimacy and insight than youd expect, and it helps that it has such a strong comic-book foundation.

Featuring stunning art by Leandro Fernndez, colorist Daniela Miwa, and letterer Jodi Wynne, The Old Guard comic book is a genuine spectacle, depicting epic war sequences in flashbacks to the soldiers past battles. The movie operates on a smaller scale, which works in its favor by relying on visceral, close-quarters combat. But for those who want to expand their experience, heres a guide to the world, characters, and exhilarating action of the comic.

The Old Guard is a fairy tale of blood and bullets following immortal soldiers whose lives are defined by conflict. They discover their immortality when they are killed (or, rather, not killed) on a battlefield, and spend the centuries after traveling the world in one cohesive group, fighting for what they believe to be right. Of course, individually, they hope for the day when their immortality will disappear, a random occurrence that has only happened to one of their kind in the past. The current quartet of immortals led by Andy, a woman whose history spans millennia gains a new member when Nile Freeman, a U.S. Marine, miraculously survives a fatal injury while on tour in Afghanistan. Nile appears just as the groups secret existence is compromised, putting them in the crosshairs of a Big Pharma bro who wants to unlock the secrets of their genetic code. Cue the blood and bullets.

Image Comics publishes the title in a five-issue miniseries format, starting with The Old Guard in 2017 and continuing with 2019s The Old Guard: Force Multiplied, which concludes next week. The collection of the first miniseries is on sale now as The Old Guard, Book One: Opening Fire, and The Old Guard, Book Two: Force Multiplied hits stands September 16. You can read the first issue of The Old Guard for free here.

Played by Charlize Theron in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/Netflix

Start of immortality: Central Eurasia, approximately 4700 B.C.

What shes lost: Too many people and shes sick of it. She discovered her immortality when she was killed by the warrior woman she viewed as a mother, a betrayal that made the murder all the more painful.

She was alone for a thousand years before meeting Lykon and Noriko, two people like her who meet very different fates. Lykon dies in combat, the first and only immortal to run out the clock. Noriko is lost when shes thrown off a ship in the middle of the ocean.

Andys most recent love was Achilles, a freed slave who fought with the British in the Revolutionary War and met Andy while condemned to a penal colony in the West Indies. He grew old with Andy, who left him before people could become too suspicious of her immortality.

What the movie doesnt show you: The comic spends much more time in Andys past, beginning with a sequence contrasting her victories on the battlefield with her conquests in the bedroom. Montages capture the huge scope of her experience with big jumps in place and time, moments tied together by never-ending carnage.

The Old Guard: Force Multiplied reveals Andys first death in snow-covered mountains, where she goes to war with her signature ax and throws herself into a horde of enemies. Andys youth, strength, and intelligence threaten her mentor, who orders the rest of the army to kill her. Andy survives, is worshipped as a god for a while, then settles into her life roaming from one war to another, occasionally meeting a fellow tortured immortal along the way.

From left: Played by Luca Marinelli in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/NetflixPlayed by Marwan Kenzari in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/Netflix

From top: Played by Luca Marinelli in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/NetflixPlayed by Marwan Kenzari in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks... more From top: Played by Luca Marinelli in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/NetflixPlayed by Marwan Kenzari in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/Netflix

Start of immortality: The First Crusade.

What theyve lost: Nicky and Joe are the only members of the team who dont linger on what immortality costs them because it gives them each other. They both became immortal at the same time, and through violence, experienced a level of physical connection that blossomed into love.

What the movie doesnt show you: Nicky and Joe meet each other as enemy combatants when a Christian army lays siege to a Muslim stronghold. They discover their immortality by killing each other, and continue killing each other each time they revive. They always wake up together, ultimately deciding to keep that going permanently without the murder foreplay.

Played by Matthias Schoenaerts in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/Netflix

Start of immortality: Russia, 1812.

What hes lost: Four sons, who grew to hate their forever-young father as their bodies deteriorated. They begged him to share his secret, and cursed his name when he couldnt. This is the danger of telling your family the truth.

What the movie doesnt show you: A soldier in Napoleons army during the doomed invasion of Russia, Booker is one of the Frenchmen left freezing and starving when the Russians torch their own fields and cities in the dead of winter. With nothing to eat and only misery on the horizon, Booker attempts to desert but is caught, dragged through the cold, and hanged from a noose, where he stays for three days until the army moves on.

Played by KiKi Layne in the Netflix movie. Photo: Aimee Spinks/Netflix

Start of immortality: Afghanistan, modern day.

What shes lost: A mother and a younger brother she cant reach out to for fear of suffering the same consequences as Booker.

What the movie doesnt show you: Not applicable. Niles war has her searching for individual terrorists in Afghani villages, not fighting huge armies, and all of that makes it to the screen. Theres actually more Nile action in the movie, like an airplane sparring session against Andy that highlights her hand-to-hand combat skills. Ruckas second-draft screenplay expanding Niles role in the story brought Gina Prince-Bythewood on board, and the film gives the character more time to explore the grief of losing her old life and discover what she needs to do with her eternal future.

Start of immortality: Precise time and place unknown, but after Andy and before Lykon.

What shes lost: Lykon and Andy, but also her sanity.

What the movie doesnt show you: The broad strokes of Noriko/Quynhs story are the same on the page, but the details change. Her primary function is to show the horrific side of immortality as she lives through a constant state of drowning and revival at the bottom of the ocean. In the comic, shes thrown from a ship in a storm. Her film counterparts fate is more heavily tied to the cruelty of man. She ends up in this same gruesome cycle after shes put in an iron maiden by people who have discovered her and Andys secret. Noriko eventually returns as the main villain of The Old Guard: Force Multiplied.

Start of immortality: Not applicable.

What hes lost: The trust of five immortals who will kill him if he doesnt help them for the rest of his life.

What the movie doesnt show you: Like Nile, Copley ends up getting much more depth in the film. He gains a backstory about losing his wife to cancer, which compels him to work with Merrick to unlock the key to immortality. The comic version is simply compelled by his paycheck and duty to his employer.

Start of immortality: Not applicable.

What hes lost: Any semblance of decency. Eventually, his life.

What the movie doesnt show you: The extent to which hes a sadistic maniac. The movie version of the Big Pharma bro hell-bent on harnessing immortality is much more boyish and meek compared to the jacked, tattooed character in the comic. When he first meets the captured Nicky and Joe, he treats them like living pincushions, gleefully stabbing them with a knife because they cant die. They make him pay for that later.

Start of immortality: Not applicable.

What hes lost: His life.

What the movie doesnt show you: The doctor tasked with experimenting on Nicky and Joe is a man in the comic, and he becomes a symbol of the two immortals love for each other. When Dr. Ivan decides to let the two men free in hopes theyll show him mercy, they kill him immediately for hurting the person they love most.

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A Short History of The Old Guard Comic Universe - Vulture

Peculiarities and miscellanea of the Street Fighter series – Boing Boing

Capcom's Street Fighter is one of the most famous and expansively franchised games in history, rolling mercilessly on since 1987. RAE compiled an exhaustive collection of miscellaneous details, from hidden inspirations to the importance of Bill Cravens to game history.

Bill Cravens, whose name and image is grafittied on the Block Heads pub in Birdie's stage in Street Fighter, was vice-president of sales and marketing at Capcom USA and, as a distributor, was a key figure in reviving the arcade business following the crash in 1983. He is also said to have sold one of the very first Pong machines at the dawn of arcade gaming in the early '70s. Bill Cravens passed away in 2007 but a kind of immortality is assured by being one of only a very few 'real-life' individuals to appear in the Street Fighter universe, with Mikhail Gorbachev's cameo in Zangief's Street Fighter II endings being the most egregious

From SF2:

The flags in Ryu's stage of World Warrior are the Frinkazan, the battle standard of 16th century daimyo Takeda Shingen. The standard is quoting chapter seven of Sun Tzu's The Art of War and the full translation is:

Let your rapidity be that of the wind, your compactness that of the forest.In raiding and plundering be like fire, be immovable like a mountain.

There are hundreds if not thousands of entries in the list.

Code Parade (also on itch.io) is developing a hyperbolic 3D game engine (download) where a line is not necessarily the shortest path between two places. I was impressed by the tunnels that are longer inside than outside, but the three-roomed house blew my mind. Cant wait for the unsettling haunted-house games to come. See if []

Im looking forward to playing Hideous Abomination [Kickstarter], because it combines two of my favorite things: games where you build something piece by piece out of cards or tiles, and grotesque cartoon creatures that defy the imagination. Hideous Abomination is a tile-laying game for 2-5 people, aged 12+ (but with simplified rules for younger players), []

Yesterday I posted about Finger on the App, a game in which players must keep their finger on their smartphone screen (and occasionally move it to a new spot indicated by the app, to prevent cheating). The last person to keep their finger on the app wins a prize of up to $25,000. Over 48 []

The notion of two people sleeping in the same bed always inspires romantic visions of love and intimacy. However, most quickly realize that the romance of sleeping together is often quickly replaced by the realities of the act. One partner snores. The other talks in their sleep. One grinds their teeth. The other hogs the []

Add Internet of Things to the shortlist of those actually benefiting from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. You might not realize it, but the organizing principle that is bringing more automation to the world is actually proving to be a major asset as human beings are forced to stay home and away from the []

Weve all had those nights where were working on a laptop or scrolling through our phone before glancing at the time to find its actually a lot later than we thought. Most nights, youd be fast asleep or at least dead tired at midnight or 1 or 3 a.m. But after staring at a screen, []

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Peculiarities and miscellanea of the Street Fighter series - Boing Boing

Who is Andromache of Scythia in The Old Guard? How Old Was She? – The Cinemaholic

Netflixs The Old Guard tells the story of a group of individuals who have been around for a long time. They are mercenaries who have never failed a single assignment, and the reason, as is revealed soon enough, for their unbelievably impressive streak of wins is the little gift that nature has bestowed on them. It turns out that they cant be killed. No matter what you do to them, they will always heal from their wounds and come back to life just as they were, without a scratch.

This team is led by a woman named Andy, who commands the loyalty of her team and proves to be an excellent leader in battle. She is also the oldest of them all and hence, knows everything there is to know about the Old Guard and their immortality. In the middle of the film, an interesting detail is dropped about her that gives us some hint about her long and mysterious past. Heres what you should know about her.

The Old Guard follows the story of a bunch of people who have been alive for a long time. While the latest immortal is discovered in the present day, the oldest of the group doesnt even reveal their real age. The group is led by a woman named Andy. It is later revealed that her real name is Andromache of Scythia. While others use landmarks in history, for instance, the Crusades, to give us an idea about their age, Andy simply tells us that she is very, very old. To understand the extent of her immortal life, one only needs to pay attention to her name.

On the surface, there isnt really any Andromache of Scythia in history or mythology. But when you separate the two terms youll find that there is a lot to dig in to find out more about Andy. Lets start with her first name, Andromache. In the Greek Mythology, Andromache (or Andromake) was the wife of Hector of Troy and the daughter of the king of Cilician Thebe, Eetion. Her name translates to the fighter of men, which falls in line with the nature of Andy, who is practically unbeatable. Andromache was known for her loyalty and survival in the face of suffering, which is another set of traits that we can use to describe the heroine of The Old Guard. But thats not the only Andromache that mythology has to offer.

Another Andromache to appear in Greek mythology is the queen of the Amazons. The Amazons were a fierce tribe of warrior women, who also became the focus of the superhero figure, Wonder Woman. According to the stories about them, they used to live in the territory that falls in Asia Minor and were known for their aggressive nature and brutal strategies adopted to win the war. Interestingly, they also fought on the side of Troy in the Trojan War, which brings us around to Hectors wife. Going by this information, it wouldnt be hard to believe that Andy is one of the Amazons.

While the Amazonians are now partly considered a myth and partly considered a backstory for the DC character, some archeological discoveries have unearthed burial sites of female warriors, who are considered to be the inspiration for the myth of the Amazons. The sites were found in (you guessed it) Scythia, which, in modern-day, falls somewhere in Iran and other areas of eastern Europe. For the ancient Greeks, Scythia was the territory in the north-east of Europe. They were nomadic people, and their origins are believed to have been traced back to around the 10th century BC! So, yeah, when Andy meant she was very, very old, and then some, she really meant it.

Read More:Best Action Movies Like The Old Guard

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Who is Andromache of Scythia in The Old Guard? How Old Was She? - The Cinemaholic

Doctor Who Theory: How Rassilon Fits Into The Timeless Child Retcon – Screen Rant

Doctor Who season 12 revealed the true origin story of the Time Lords - but just how does Rassilon, founder of Gallifrey, fit into this?

The Timeless Child is the biggest retcon in the history ofDoctor Who - but how does Rassilon, founder of Time Lord civilization, fit into this?Doctor Who showrunner Chris Chibnall promised that season 12 would change everything, and he wasn't understating the case. TheDoctor Who season 12 finale, "The Timeless Children," revealed the Doctor's true history has been concealed all this time."They lied to us," the Master revealed. "Everything we were told was a lie. We are not who we think. You or I. The whole existence of our species - built on the lie of the Timeless Child."

The Doctor is the Timeless Child, a mysterious being found at the foot of a Boundary into another universe. She was discovered by a Gallifreyan explorer named Tecteun, who took the Timeless Child as her own. Then, one day, tragedy struck. The Timeless Child suffered what should have been a fatal accident, but instead of dying she regenerated. Tecteun was astounded at what she had seen, and she set about trying to understand the Timeless Child's powers. The Timeless Child thus became thebase genetic code for all Gallifreyans within the Citadel, and the Time Lords were born. This is easily the biggest retcon in the history ofDoctor Who; in general it's foreshadowed fairly well by classicDoctor Who,thoughit sits uncomfortably with the post-2005 relaunched series.

Related:Former Doctor Who Showrunner Changes Regeneration Rules

There is one curious omission, however: Rassilon. Generally regarded as the founder of Time Lord civilization, Rassilon was an explorer who longed to see more of the universe than any man could in one lifetime. According to classicDoctor Who, and countless previous tie-ins, under Rassilon's reign the Gallifreyans discovered the secret of regeneration and became Lords of Time. Rassilon himself is immortal, although he believed no other Time Lords were worthy of this, and left the Game of Rassilon behind as a trap for any successor who would seek immortality. The Time Lords brought Rassilon back to lead them in the Time War, and he was opposed byDavid Tennant's Tenth Doctor in "The End of Time."

Rassilon is apparently entirely absent in "The Timeless Children," which seems odd given that Chibnall is an old-schoolDoctor Who fan. It is important to note, however, that "The Timeless Children" confirms Gallifreyan history has been deliberately obscured; that leaves a lot of wriggle-room. The most likely solution is that Tecteun, the scientist who discovered the Timeless Child and unlocked the secret of resurrection, was in fact Rassilon. Both have been portrayed as explorers who sought immortality; Tecteun gained the power of unlimited regenerations but chose to limit other Time Lords, just as Rassilon believed he alone should be functionally immortal. It's true that Tecteun was female while Rassilon was male, but that is hardly an issue given that regeneration allows a Time Lord to change biological sex.

This is a simple retcon, and it fits rather well. If this is the case, then during the Time War the Doctor found himself going up against the one being who truly understood what he was capable of. Little wonder Rassilon was so shocked and surprised in "The Day of the Doctor," when he realized how many incarnations of the Doctor were in play. It is ironic that Rassilon, the explorer who sought immortality to explore the cosmos, ultimately led Gallifrey to a pocket dimension where his people lived on in isolation, unable to return.

More:Doctor Who Already Has The Perfect 15th Doctor Actor

Agents of SHIELD's Final Season Is Eerily Similar To Fringe - Will It End The Same Way?

Tom Bacon is one of Screen Rant's staff writers, and he's frankly amused that his childhood is back - and this time it's cool. Tom's focus tends to be on the various superhero franchises, as well as Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Star Trek; he's also an avid comic book reader. Over the years, Tom has built a strong relationship with aspects of the various fan communities, and is a Moderator on some of Facebook's largest MCU and X-Men groups. Previously, he's written entertainment news and articles for Movie Pilot.A graduate of Edge Hill University in the United Kingdom, Tom is still strongly connected with his alma mater; in fact, in his spare time he's a voluntary chaplain there. He's heavily involved with his local church, and anyone who checks him out on Twitter will quickly learn that he's interested in British politics as well.

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Doctor Who Theory: How Rassilon Fits Into The Timeless Child Retcon - Screen Rant

From The Umbrella Academy season 2 to The Old Guard: Forever, trailers released this week on Netflix – Firstpost

Netflix dropped a new trailer for The Old Guard, starring Charlize Theron, days before it drops on the streaming platform on 10 July

The past weekoffered viewerstrailers of several anticipated shows. From the second season of the comic book adaptation of The Umbrella Academy to the final battle between the Autobots and the Decepticons in Hasbro'sTransformers: War For Cybertron - Netflix offered viewers a glimpse into the worlds of the popular shows.

On the other hand, viewers will be able to witness Charlize Theron delivering some good old action in the Netflix original movie The Old Guard - Forever.

Here is the trailer breakdown of the shows and movie to keep an eye on

The Umbrella Academy: Season 2

The story picks up from where the first season ended as Five and his siblings use Fives powers to escape the apocalypse of 2019. The family ends up in different time zones in and around Texas. But they will get another chance at saving the planet from the devastating apocalypse in the second season. But before figuring that out, the siblings need to come together, deal with the consequences of time travelling and defeat assassins on loose.

The Umbrella Academy: Season 2 premieres on Netflix on 31 July.

The Old Guard: Forever

The Netflix original feature film is based on the comic series by Greg Rucka and Leandro Fernandez. The word forever in the title is a nod to the group of extraordinary soldiers, led by Charlize Theron aka Andromache of Scythia, who never die. But the story focuses on the difficulties of immortality instead of focusing on its glamorous side. Andromache or Andy recruits Nile (played by Kiki Layne) who is the latest soldier to join them as their secret of immortality stands in front of the risk of being misused by the bad party.

The film premieres on Netflix on 10 July.

Transformers: War For Cybertron Trilogy - Siege

Unrelated to the popular video game series of the same name, this anime series focuses on the never told before story of the civil war between the Autobots and the Decepticons. Optimus Prime and Megatron lead their sides to the battle that has been touted to finally come to an end in the trailer. The whole lighting of the trailer is pretty dark to keep a balance with the war theme and features no human characters, much to the relief of fans.

It premieres exclusively on Netflix on 30 July.

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From The Umbrella Academy season 2 to The Old Guard: Forever, trailers released this week on Netflix - Firstpost

Black deaths matter: The centuries-old struggle to memorialize slaves and victims of racism – The Wilton Bulletin

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Vicki Daniel, Case Western Reserve University

(THE CONVERSATION) In an open lot just a block or so from where George Floyd was killed while being detained by officers, 100 plastic headstones were carefully placed.

Created by artists Anna Barber and Connor Wright, the Say Their Names Cemetery sprung up in south Minneapolis in early June, as protests over police brutality prompted a more wide-ranging conversation over the legacy of slavery and racism in the United States.

Each headstone documents a victim of police violence their name, age, date and location of death. Accompanying the biographical information reads a simple epitaph: Rest in Power a reworking of rest in peace that has gained popularity among Black Lives Matter activists and supporters to commemorate the dead.

#SayTheirNames

The cemetery forms part of a wider #SayTheirNames campaign aimed at resisting the public erasure of dead victims of brutality.

I study death rituals in the U.S.Scholars in my field have long argued that Black and African American commemorative practices are important in asserting the personhood of the deceased and maintaining and celebrating community. They have been used to proclaim Black autonomy at times when society has infringed upon the rights of Black people.

The fight to remember those killed by violence has roots in the history of slave cemeteries and burial practices. The enslaved were often limited in their choice of burial grounds, especially on rural Southern plantations. White owners relegated their cemeteries to marginal land that could not be cultivated. Many burials were marked only with a wooden post.

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Yet, enslaved communities were often allowed to bury and commemorate their dead, and these funerals were, in the words of historian David Roediger, value-laden and unifying social events that allowed for communal expression. Slavery made Black bodies into financial assets. In contrast, Black commemoration of the dead acknowledged their social relationships and the value of their lives.

Marking the graves of the dead with natural or man-made objects could carry tremendous spiritual meaning for the enslaved, sometimes evoking African precedents. In the Central African Bakongo tradition, the burial place was considered a portal between the living and the dead; objects left on the grave could serve as charms to communicate with and assist the spirit in its transition to the afterlife.

Such traditions appeared on American plantation burials as well, as mourners would leave items that had physical connection with the deceased, such as plates and cups.

There were other practices as well, such as putting items with an association with water, including shells and pitchers, close to graves. These reflected a belief in the association between water and the souls immortality and metaphysical crossing.

Such practices in America also helped to construct an African diaspora culture that celebrated Black humanity under a labor system that tried to systematically dehumanize the enslaved.

Hidden in plain sight

The absence of recognizable markers on enslaved burials today does not necessarily mean the dead were unacknowledged.

In some instances, grave markers are hidden in plain sight: Scholars have noted the common presence of periwinkle, cedar trees, yucca and other plantings, suggesting that some Black communities employed a botanical language of grave marking. Some of these plants may have been used for their symbolism, or for their visibility, standing out against an areas native plant life.

In other cases, enslaved communities marked burials with common fieldstones. Although not inscribed, these stones nonetheless provided some form of physical acknowledgment of the dead.

For example, the cemetery at Avoca plantation, near Lynchburg, Virginia, contains several irregular stones that appear to have been placed on the site. The cemetery also contains two pieces of pink quartz, which may indicate the burial of children, scholars believe.

Plantations owners and their families, however, often were laid to rest in family cemeteries. At Avoca, the family burial ground is defined by a low stone wall, and many of the people interred there received a formal stone marker of some kind. This feature conveys a sense of permanence that is often lacking in enslaved peoples cemeteries.

Gods Little Acre

There are some instances of stone markers in Black cemeteries from the antebellum period. One of the most well-known Black burial grounds lies in Newport, Rhode Island. Newport had a sizable community of free and enslaved Africans and African Americans in the colonial period.

Known as Gods Little Acre, the sites headstones serve as a remarkable testament of African identity, perseverance and memory, according to the cemeterys website. Both enslaved and free members of the Newport community received markers.

Some of the stones acknowledge the deceaseds African heritage; others were paid for by the deceaseds owners. Several of the Newport markers were made by enslaved African stonecutters a mason known as Pompe Stevens signed at least two of his works, one of which was for his brothers grave.

As political and social inequality continued into the 19th century, communal burial grounds remained important places for expressing the value of Black lives.

In 1807, men and women affiliated with the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Baltimore founded the African Burying Ground which exists today as the renamed Mount Auburn Cemetery. As historian Kami Fletcher argues, the cemetery was founded as the simultaneous call for freedom and humanity as well as a call for actualized burial rights for Black people and people of color.

The cemetery let the local Black community bury its dead in ways that were significantly different from burials on nearby plantations: The dead could be named, placed near family and interred in land owned by their own community.

Remembering the dead

In recent years there have been efforts to locate and restore enslaved cemeteries that have been lost or threatened by development. This work exists in many forms, from the African Burial Ground National Monument in New York City to smaller cemeteries documented by archaeologists and local organizations. Universities and former plantations have made the effort to search for, and commemorate, slave cemeteries.

New discoveries of remains continue to raise questions about how to appropriately honor burial sites and the painful histories they represent. Even at sites where the names of the dead are lost, historical interpretation, digital projects and public education can act as long overdue markings of the dead.

As Minneapolis temporary Say Their Names Cemetery hints at, commemoration is not an apolitical act. Remembering those lost to violence whether that of slavery or of unchecked police power is important. It can serve as a reminder for the need for political and legislative change, led by communities who have spent centuries asserting the value of both Black lives and Black deaths.

The Conversation is an independent and nonprofit source of news, analysis and commentary from academic experts. The Conversation is wholly responsible for the content.

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Black deaths matter: The centuries-old struggle to memorialize slaves and victims of racism - The Wilton Bulletin


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