The 11th Hour Dispatch – Thursday, March 22, 2018
Comedy nerds rejoice! Netflix bought British comedy troupe Monty Python’s TV and film catalog, and it could include new original content for the service from the remaining Python members. This deal includes international rights to classic films like Monty Python & the Holy Grail and Monty Python’s Life of Brian, as well as the group’s BBC sketch show Monty Python’s Flying Circus. The titles hit Netflix in the UK, Canada, and various other international markets on April 15. We have to wait here in the land of hot dogs and bald eagles though, as the U.S. won’t see the catalog on Netflix until “later in the year.”
Millionaire toy executive Isaac Larian has launched a GoFundMe page to save Toys ‘R’ Us after it announced it would be shutting down all of its U.S. stores earlier this week. Larian and “other investors” kicked off their $1 billion goal with a $200 million contribution. So far, fans have added around $9,975 to that number. Larian is currently the CEO of MGA Entertainment, the company that makes Bratz dolls. Apparently, one in five of every sale of the dolls takes place at a Toys ‘R’ Us, so this is probably a mostly selfish venture, but when is a business venture not. In other incredibly sad news, the man that founded Toys ‘R’ Us 70 years ago, Charles Lazarus, has passed away at the age of 94. “He was the father of the toy business,” said Michael Goldstein, who took his place as CEO when Lazarus stepped down in 1994. “He knew the toys and loved the toys and loved the kids who would shop in the stores. His face lit up when he watched kids playing with toys.” RIP, Mr. Lazarus.
Instagram has switched its feed settings back to chronological order so that you can see all of the posts from that girl you went to high school with that is now a full-time mommy blogger and catch updates from that dog you stalk online (it’s not creepy, okay!) in real time. The previous feed was based on an algorithm that ordered posts based on a user’s activity on the app. People absolutely despised it, and some went as far as issuing a petition on Change.org to get their precious feed switched back. So I guess it’s a fabulous day for all of you that really picked a great hill to die on in.
COLORING OUTSIDE THE LINES
This robot fish developed by researchers at MIT could help nature filmmakers get really close to all of the little freaks in the ocean (ocean life) to better understand them. The Soft Robotic Fish, nicknamed SoFi, is made of 3D-printed water-tight compartments composed of silicone elastomer, which shield a Linux-PC and a fish-eye camera, and allow it to mimic the movement of real fish to an almost scary degree. The fish also contains a cylinder that compresses and depresses air to allow it to move up and down in the water and various pressures, similar to a real fish’s swim bladder. Because the fish moves so realistically, it is able to integrate with wildlife without disturbing them, yielding some spectacular looks into life under the sea.
NOTHIN’ BUT ‘NET
This kid and only this kid is allowed to give me the weather report from this point further.