Welcome to Barely Related, a conversational Friday column that presents the non-gaming news stories that we, the Joystiq staff, have been talking about over the past week. And no, we're not stopping our focus on industry and gaming news. Think of this as your casual weekly recap of interesting (and mostly geeky) news, presented just in time to fill your brain with things to discuss at all of those weekend shindigs.
Grab a fresh drink, lean back in your armchair, and get ready to talk nerdy with us.
... in 2016. Twin Peaks will return to television with nine episodes on Showtime scheduled to air in 2016. Last week, show creators David Lynch and Mark Frost teased a comeback with some tweets, and this week a short video teaser announced the revival. The new run will go live 25 years after the end of Twin Peaks' second (and, at the time, final) season in 1991.
The revamp is set in present day and reflects the passage of 25 years, though it will address plot points raised in the second season.
"Those followers of the show who felt bereft when the show ended where it did all those years ago are going to like where it goes from here," Frost told Variety. "And we hope that a lot of people who haven't been to Twin Peaks yet are going to be equally interested in where the story goes from where we left off."
A new, all-female Ghostbusters movie is on its way from Paul Feig, director of Bridesmaids and the creator of Freaks and Geeks, and Katie Dippold, writer of Parks and Recreation and The Heat. Feig announced the news in a tweet.
It's official. I'm making a new Ghostbusters & writing it with @katiedippold & yes, it will star hilarious women. That's who I'm gonna call.
Alfonso Ribeiro, the actor best known for playing Carlton on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, brought back his signature moves on Dancing with the Stars this week. It's a lovely performance from him and his dance partner, Witney Carson.
The worldwide web attempted for hours to decode it, with many hoping it meant a leap back into Harry's story. Eventually, one fan unraveled it correctly to read, "Newt Scamander only meant to stay in New York for a few hours."
This is part of the screenplay writing Rowling is doing for the coming film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which stars the Wizarding World's magizoologist Newt Scamander. "The solution is the first sentence of a synopsis of Newt's story. It isn't part of the script, but sets the scene," Rowling tweeted.
Will Arnett is returning for a Lego movie about Batman, the overly gravelly, arrogant and self-centered character from The Lego Movie. The film is on a fast track and may launch as early as 2017, before The Lego Movie 2, THR reports. It'll be directed by Chris McKay, animation supervisor of The Lego Movie.
See, Mom? You do have grandchildren already. Furry, excitable grandchildren.
Mothers' brains exhibited similar responses when shown pictures of their own children and their own dogs, a study by the Massachusetts General Hospital Center for Comparative Medicine found.
"We examined fMRI brain activation patterns as mothers viewed images of their own child and dog and an unfamiliar child and dog," the abstract reads. "There was a common network of brain regions involved in emotion, reward, affiliation, visual processing and social cognition when mothers viewed images of both their child and dog .... Mothers also rated images of their child and dog as eliciting similar levels of excitement (arousal) and pleasantness (valence)."
Next up for debate: Who loves us more – our own babies or our own dogs?
Serial is the new podcast series from This American Life creators and hosted by Sarah Koenig – it tells one seriously in-depth story per season, and the premiere is a murder mystery. Here's the synopsis:
"It's Baltimore, 1999. Hae Min Lee, a popular high-school senior, disappears after school one day. Six weeks later detectives arrest her classmate and ex-boyfriend, Adnan Syed, for her murder. He says he's innocent – though he can't exactly remember what he was doing on that January afternoon. But someone can. A classmate at Woodlawn High School says she knows where Adnan was. The trouble is, she's nowhere to be found."
Three episodes are live now and they're updated weekly; listen to them at the Serial website.
Google's Niantic Labs – in charge of mobile reality-bending game Ingress – is running Endgame, a series of augmented reality games, for the new book series by James Frey and Nils Johnson-Shelton. The ARG experiences will influence the coming books in the series, and any movies and novellas in the universe. The first book is titled Endgame: The Calling, and it's out now, along with a website called Ancient Societies. A mobile ARG is due to launch early next year.
"A lot of the things that have been done in the past in this kind of realm have been marketing for other things," Niantic Labs' Jim Stewartson says. "This is not marketing, it's a real important storyline in the universe."
American Horror Story creator Ryan Murphy and the network FX is working on American Crime Story, an anthology series that tells the tale of one major, true crime per season. First up: OJ Simpson. American Crime Story: The People vs. OJ Simpson is 10 episodes, and it will be told from the perspective of the lawyers during Simpson's trial.
Side note: The first episode of American Horror Story: Freak Show was deliciously disturbing.
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