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I'm a big fan of surprise releases, and that's just what Justin Timberlake served-up this week, announcing a February 2 release for his next LP, MAN OF THE WOODS. While an unexpected album announcement was news on its own, now comes the first single and a Mark Romanek-directed video. "Filthy" features Timberlake as a tech icon - a robot inventor with a Steve Jobs vibe - at a conference in the not-so-distant future. Check it out below...

If you've played video games at any point within the last three decades or so, there's a solid chance that you've owned a Mad Catz product. The longtime maker of gaming controllers and accessories was a fixture for years, but the last few were anything but kind for them. Following an expensive gamble on Rock Band 4, for which they served as co-publisher in addition to the hardware and accessory maker, the U.S.-based company went under, filing for bankruptcy in the spring of 2017. Now, the brand is back, now known as Mad Catz Global Limited, announcing what they've called "a surprise return to the international gaming scene... under new management, with new ideas, new attitude and most importantly, an entire range of new, high-quality gaming products." Check out a teaser below...

If you're a console gamer like I am, this won't apply to you, but if PC gaming is your thing and you're currently playing EA's Star Wars: Battlefront II, this might be up your alley. Mods are a big deal to a lot of PC gamers, and Battlefront already has its share, but one in particular that came across my twitter feed this morning is pretty fantastic. I've mentioned it before, but SNL's Undercover Boss: Starkiller Base sketch still holds up as being a delightful piece of Star Wars comedy - one that has a lot of re-watch potential. Many became fans of Matt the Radar Technician (Kylo Ren in disguise), and now you can play as Matt in Battlefront II is mods are your thing. Check out the video below!

For the past few years, Spin Master has absolutely been killing it on all fronts - becoming a powerhouse not just in toys, but also as an entertainment company with some truly stellar IP. At the front of that, PAW Patrol is no doubt their flagship brand, and it's one we're very familiar with here at Rock Father™ HQ. Last year, two items from that line landed on my annual Holiday Wish Guide™, with the My Size Lookout and Sea Patroller ranking among 2017's best toys. For those interested in how a property can become a hit on all levels, there's a must-read article from Canada's The Globe and Mail that chronicles the development of PAW Patrol from 2010 to its debut in 2013 and where it's headed in 2018. Had things developed differently, instead of Ryder and the PAW Patrol, we could've wound up with "Raffi and The Rescue Dogs."

On January 18, Fred Armisen, Carrie Brownstein and many more of Portlandia’s most loved and eccentric characters are back for a for their eighth and final season on IFC. Today we've got a new trailer for the last run, and we get a glimpse at where those weirdos from Oregon are headed as the curtain begins to fall. See it below...

I support vigilante justice... if done properly. Of course, such behavior is technically still illegal, but I think it's a reflection of our society that makes characters like Batman and The Punisher so empowering and inspiring. Now, from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures comes director Eli Roth’s reimagining of the 1974 revenge thriller Death Wish - a film that epitomized a certain brand of vigilante action. Bruce Willis stars as Dr. Paul Kersey - "a surgeon who only sees the aftermath of his city’s violence as it’s rushed into his ER – until his wife (Elisabeth Shue) and college-age daughter (Camila Morrone) are viciously attacked in their suburban home. With the police overloaded with crimes, Paul, burning for revenge, hunts for his family’s assailants to deliver justice. As the anonymous slayings of criminals grabs the media’s attention, the city wonders if this deadly avenger is a guardian angel…or a grim reaper." Check out the latest trailer below! 

Paramount Pictures is currently in-production on AMUSEMENT PARK, a 3D computer animated adventure comedy film set to be released on March 15, 2019. Produced by Paramount Animation, Nickelodeon Movies and Ilion Animation Studios, there hasn't been a ton of information released about the project since it's original announcement a few years back, sans the casting of Matthew Broderick, Jennifer Garner, Jeffrey Tambor, Kenan Thompson, Ken Jeong, Mila Kunis, and John Oliver, all of whom will lend their voice talents to the film under the direction of Dylan Brown. Today comes news that Paramount is confident that AMUSEMENT PARK will be a big hit, with the announcement of a full line of toys to support both the film, and its already-in-production spinoff television series that's headed for Nickelodeon.

Wednesday, January 03 2018 09:31

Scooby-Doo and Batman are Teaming Up Again...

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Over the years, Batman has been known to team-up with Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. gang, a tradition that dates back to The New Scooby-Doo Movies of the early 1970s. In fact, I recall buying said episodes on VHS in the 1990s (I believe at a Suncoast or similar store in Chicago's Water Tower Place) as "Scooby-Doo Meets Batman & Robin." More recently, there was a 2011 episode of Batman: The Brave and the Bold in which everyone came together in an homage to the stories from the 70s, but now they're back together again for an all-new movie. From Warner Bros. Animation and DC Comics comes Scooby-Doo! & Batman: The Brave and the Bold, arriving on DVD & Digital HD on January 9, 2018. Check out the trailer...

It's a new year, and as I write this right now, we're having extreme sub-zero temperatures here in northern Illinois. Pair that with the residue from the snow and salt, and our rides aren't looking too hot, and there's no good way to clean them until it warms up. Dreaming of warmer weather, I'm always thinking about shining up the cars, and there's always that goal of making them as "new car" fresh as possible. With that in mind, the folks at Meguiar's (check out their full product line on Amazon) have sent over a list of six helpful tips that can aid in keeping your new car looking and feeling like new longer, but are also great for freshening up an older ride as well. I've got the full rundown below, along with a quick look at the team that makes Meguiar's...

Back when the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) was in its original run (I still have yet to acquire an SNES Classic Edition), JVC and Lucasarts released a trio of games based on the Original Star Wars Trilogy. Super Star Wars (1992), Super Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (1993) and Super Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1994) rank among my favorite games for that system, and now there's a new video that recalls the excitement of those titles. From 16-bit animator John Stratman, here's Luke Skywalker facing off against Kylo Ren in Star Wars: The Last Jedi... in classic SNES style!

I should probably preface this by noting that this is not a joke. I generally steer clear of the pop culture snark here in the virtual pages of The Rock Father™ Magazine (most of the time, but not always), but there's times when these things practically write themselves. Each year, I think that the folks behind the annual Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival could not possibly create a more "anti-me" lineup for their much buzzed-about two weekend event. Still, Goldenvoice manages to surprise me, and this year just might be the most anti-Rock Father™ edition of Coachella yet! Sure, they've had some fantastic artists play (Faith No More in 2010 being the pinnacle, but others such as Guns N Roses, Depeche Mode, Oasis, and Paul McCartney have played), but they consistently manage to package a lineup of artists so devoid of anything remotely interesting to me, I still manage to find surprise in how boring it is. It wasn't always this way, either. The early lineups were good, in many ways picking up the torch for Lollapalooza in the years were Lolla went dark*. But since about 2011 it's been downhill, with very little exception. Here's a look at 2018...

Is Kylo Ren's body a wonderland? Following the now-classic Undercover Boss: Starkiller Base SNL sketch in which it is touted that Kylo Ren "is shredded" and "has an eight pack," Adam Driver had the chance to show the goods in Rian Johnson's Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Indeed, while some audiences (and Rey) were surprised to see a shirtless Kylo Ren hanging out on his First Order Star Destroyer,  others took note of his unusually high-waisted pants. One such viewer was John Mayer, and he rung in the new year by launching the #KyloRenChallenge on Instagram. As of this writing, there's over 1,043 participants on Instagram, proving that The Force is strong with those looking to show off what they've got. Don't want to see some skin? You can turn back now...

A new year brings new entertainment, and tonight comes the first-look at Netflix are already on fire, breaking out some new trailers for 2018's original series. The End of the F**king World is a dark comedy from across the pond, touted with a simple dangle that "this isn’t your usual boy meets girl tale." Based upon the graphic novel by Charles Forsman, this series first arrived in the UK this past fall, a story of "a budding teenage psychopath and a rebel hungry for adventure." See the U.S. trailer below.

This morning I woke up to an email from Mattel with news that I knew would be just around the corner - the reveal of American Girl's 2018 Girl of the Year. What I didn't expect was that 2018's GOTY, Luciana Vega, would be perhaps the most perfect doll ever... at least in our house. As our girls often look to and reach for the stars, Luciana becomes a new example for them - the latest in American Girl's long line of inspiring characters that encourage girls to think about who they want to be and how they want to make their mark in the world—no matter the challenges they may face. Vega is described as "a creative, confident 11-year-old girl and aspiring astronaut who dreams of being the first person to go to Mars. And, while she has the skills and smarts to achieve her goals, she also learns that being a good leader and team player right here on Earth is the best first step." This sounds very, very familiar...

Zicam Cold ConnectionsTHE ROCK FATHER™ has created this post as part of a #sponsored series with Socialstars and Zicam®; #ZicamCrowd

As we reach the end of one year and turn the calendar to another, we make our way through the crowded holiday season and into the open waters of what lies ahead. It's a time to show appreciation for those who do for us, but also a great reminder that it's worth showing appreciation throughout the year - not just during the festive season. The Zicam Card Creator at Card Isle is an easy way to send a digital greeting card to provide a message of thanks, some get well wishes or to simply let someone know that you're thinking of them. Here's one that I made for Santa. Yes, the Mighty Santa Claus!

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