June is coming to a close and we’re entering into the back nine of 2021. Business is resuming, vacations are looming, and we’re all noticing a certain end to 2020’s doom(ing). Between E3 and the various festivities, it feels like the month slipped past us here at Checkpoint. That makes it all the more important to take a step back and look at the best parts of the past month.
Here are just a few (seven to be precise) of our favorite things from the month of June 2021:
1. Loki Warped Our Lives
To the surprise of absolutely no one, Disney+ is continuing to hit the ball out of the park with the original programming. Frustratingly to us cordcutters, the media giant has timed things just right so that one show ends and another picks up—keeping us subscribed perpetually.
Loki is bringing with it the usual allure of the main character, portrayed masterfully by the dapper Tom Hiddleston. The remainder of the cast is fairly standard Marvel-level acting, but the addition of Owen Wilson to the roster steps up the star power of this show in particular. Even with the phenomenal work of Kathryn Hahn and surprise cameo of Evan Peters in Wandavision, there is something on another level with the wowing level of clout Wilson brings to the team.
None of this even goes to mention the all-too-Doctor-Who-esque storyline of the show being interesting for the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and where it will go post-Endgame and post-COVID. It seems that Loki will do it’s best to set time back where it belongs or, at least, give us enough to work with so that we won’t mind discontinuity.
To watch our theory on the true nature of Owen Wilson’s Mobius M. Mobius, click here.
2. Bo Burnham Swept the Internet (Sorta)
We can’t really tell if everyone knows about the Bo Burnham special Inside, or if it’s just absolutely wrecking the lives of the Millenial and Gen Z demographic. While many TikTokkers seem to be saying that they see nothing but Bo on their For You feed, others seem to see nothing of the sort—perhaps the rulers of the Internet are intentionally targeting those of us who are most anxious, depressed, or both. That would certainly be appropriate considering Bo’s message in the special and cynicism towards today’s media.
For those of us who have followed Bo since the days of YouTube in 2006, the special being so provocative and prodigious is far from surprising. However, I don’t think any of us predicted the level of popularity with which the special would achieve—or the level of anxiety it would draw out across the culture. Many of us remember Can’t Handle This (The Kanye Rant) rocketing off a myriad of memes, inside jokes, and deep thoughts, but the power of the algorithm took this special, especially All Eyes On Me, to a level of ubiquity that only cemented Bo’s argument further.
Even considering that they aren’t exceptionally new ideas, but existing concepts presented in an exceptional way, my own cynicism still leads me to believe Bo won’t affect real change with this one. The impending breakdown of digital culture is coming, but I think Bo will be a firestarter, not the inferno itself.
To watch our parody of one of Bo’s songs and the sermon on it, click here.
3. Jupiter’s Legacy Got The Axe
Truth be told, I (Nerd Pastor Nate) think that Jupiter’s Legacy deserved better but, after a shaky first season dropped on Netflix earlier this year, the show was officially canned with a tentative plan to reboot the series in the future. This was really the first leg of Netflix implementing it’s recent acquisition of Millarworld, so the best guess would be that this is to save face and hope for a real launch of the universe to a more approving audience. The first season had its moments, but was seriously overshadowed by the recent introduction of Invincible into the zeitgeist—poor thing never stood a chance.
As even we poked fun at, Jupiter’s Legacy dug in a little too deep into its own moral code and tried to put too much emphasis on all the wrong people to grip folks in its first season. Honestly, it might have been better to have only shown the flashback moments. In my humble opinion, those were the strongest scenes in the show and the best mystery. Oh well, we can still hope for more of Josh Duhamel in our lives some other time.
4. Nintendo Announced New IP Sequels
In a rather boring E3 showcase, gaming fans were finally given a little hope with the Nintendo Direct on the tail-end of the weekend. Despite most of Nerd Pastor Nate’s own predictions being sadly unmet, we were delightedly surprised by the announcement of Metroid 5, titled Metroid Dread, being ready to release in the next quarter, despite Metroid 4 still being a ways away. We also got a tentative date for Breath of the Wild 2 in 2022 and the exciting announcement for a new WarioWare game.
By far the most exciting announcement for Nerd Pastor Nate was that his favorite game series Danganronpa would finally be making its way to the Switch—bundled with a new game! While it’s far from a full game and may not even be a new death game, this gives some of us fans hope that a fourth entry in the series may be a possible reality despite Kodaka’s seeming denial of this.
5. Windows 11 Was Announced
Six years after the release of Windows 10, which has been pretty universally liked, Microsoft officially announced that Windows 11 would be coming to us soon—likely within a year. Many of the announcements are exciting, but not too risky. This will be the first new operating system from Microsoft since the pop off success of the Surface. It seems that Microsoft is taking its cues from that success and really focusing on the productivity of this next generation. More dockables, more widgets, more things that are designed to make the workflow much smoother. Will it? Now, that’s another question. The Windows curse typically alternates between releases, but 11 could break the streak by being a success from Day One. The most concerning factor is that they seem to be tweaking the start menu—a move which has gotten the company in trouble with it’s users before.
What can be seen as hope for the future is that this OS will likely shape the path ahead of us for at least five years of innovation. Let’s hope it’s ready for what the future holds.
6. We Raised $605 for AbleGamers!
Congratulations! We officially hosted out first ever Check-a-thon charity stream over on our Twitch channel and it was such a great time. We had a crowd that stuck with us throughout the night. We gamed together. We laughed. We read Nerd Pastor Nates’ cringy book. We reached some awesome goals with one another and had an absolute blast in the process.
But, most important of all, we raised more than our goal of $500—we raised $605 and every last penny went to AbleGamer’s. AbleGamer’s provides custom video game controllers to those who are differently abled so that everyone can game. This is the kind of inclusive culture we are wanting to embody here at Checkpoint and we could not be more proud to be supporting them.
Who knows what the future holds for the future of our charity streams? With our first one being such a huge success, who can say what our next one might look like?
7. We’re Slightly TikTok Famous
In a turn of events that still has Nerd Pastor Nate puzzled, we had a video posted to our TikTok that took off and, as of this writing, has garnered over 680,000 views. That’s an insane number and, with over 100,000k likes and over 4,000 comments, it’s been a whirlwind of a ride. Not to mention that it all came about from a silly game discovery in the world of Pokémon. All it took was for Nate to learn onstream that you can cut the grass in the original games to send him on a tailspin and attract an audience of fellow Pokémaniacs who were either just as surprised or baffled at his ignorance.
With that, June comes to a close, but not without some great memories, days on the beach, achievements, and so much more. The first half of 2021 has been an incredible time of development and growth for Checkpoint Church and we genuinely cannot wait to see what God has in store for us during the latter half. God is good and gamers are learning that Jesus really loves them. Let’s keep moving forward and enjoying every step along the way.
What We’re Most Looking Forward To In July
Space Jam: A New Legacy (HBO Max)
Black Widow (Disney+)
Masters of the Universe: Revelations (Netflix)
2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics (Maybe?)
The Great Ace Attorney (PS4, Switch, PC)
Beastars, Season 2 (Netflix)
Checkpoint Church Book Club