Holy Disney Takeover, Batman!

I’d just finished watching the IGN video going over some of the new franchises owned by Disney now that they have bought part of Fox. Among listing things like Predator, Aliens, Die Hard, and Avatar (not the Airbender), they said Disney owns the rights to the 1960s Batman with Adam West. I thought, “Now if they could only somehow add Mickey into the show then we could connect the Disney Universe with the DC Universe as a shared universe which would also connect the Marvel Universe because DC has crossed-over with Marvel many times.” But, I then thought of a more feasible approach: Aliens.

Batman and even Superman have fought the alien xenomorphs, so it is possible to link the universes that way. All Disney would need to do is have a xenomorph invasion of some of their new properties. And who wouldn’t want to see John McClane battle a xenomorph or have one chest-burst out of Mickey Mouse. Disney wouldn’t even have to do that big of an invasion. They now own The Simpsons and they’ve had crossovers with X-Files, South Park, Family Guy, and even Rick and Morty–according to a video done by the Nerdist.

The Nerdist video goes on to talk about how many cartoons are all connected, even connecting BoJack Horseman to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, which the TMNT also connects to Batman via the Batman/TMNT comics. The TMNT also connects to DC through the Injustice 2 game (which also connects it to Hellboy and Mortal Kombat). TMNT also connects to the Power Rangers; the Power Rangers also connects to DC via a JLA/Power Rangers comic. There have also been many Looney Tunes and DC stories as well. Looney Tunes can be connected to the show Tiny Toon Adventures which had appearances by many real-life actors and other Warner Brother properties.

Mortal Kombat also has a connection to Jason Voorhees from Mortal Kombat X, which also connects him to Jason Vs. Freddy, and thus to Freddy Kruger.

Speaking of a real-life connection, videos by The Game Theorists connected many video games to real-life through Mike Tyson and some through Tony Hawk. This got me thinking about further “real world” connections. I thought, “How could you show a connection between a show–or game–and the real world?” One way is the real-life celebrities. So this would connect Scooby-Doo to the real world because he’s met many real-life people, such as the WWE, but he also has connections to Archie and Batman (man, Batman gets around).

Another way to connect the real world is using the same technique that scientists use to find dark matter: look for what isn’t there. This one is a bit of stretch because it basically asks for some faith. I started thinking about the show Captain N, where a teen from the real world is transported into the Nintendo game world. I started thinking, “How would you know for sure this never happened?”

Look at Toy Story, it is supposed to take place in the real world. How do we know that toys don’t come to life when we aren’t around? So, in theory we could add any show or game that takes place in a real world where the general public is unaware of the events of the plot. For example, the Harry Potter series, the general public doesn’t know that magic exists. Who’s to say that there isn’t a Hogwarts? It’s kind of like the discussion about alien life; there’s no proof that they exist but there is no proof they don’t. So as long as Harry Potter doesn’t get on the six o’clock news and say, “I’m a wizard,” it could share a universe with us. For clarity, Cloverfield wouldn’t count because everyone knew about the monster attack; and as far as I know, a monster did not attack New York in our world.

Another way to connect the real world to other worlds is when the characters travel to parallel worlds and they call our world “Earth Prime,” “Keystone Earth,” or “Land Without Magic.” So this could add things like Stephen King’s Dark Tower series.

We could also potentially connect every LEGO game and movie because of The LEGO Movie. The movie connects the LEGO world to the real world when Emmett goes through the portal. The LEGO Dimensions game then connects The LEGO Movie to the other LEGO worlds. Since The LEGO Movie even mentions other toy sets and LEGO Dimensions also mentions other dimensions, we can add connections to all the LEGO toys, like Minecraft (at least the LEGO version). Also, Into the Spider-Verse and TMNT have also said, “every version of Spider-Man and the Turtles are part of a multiverse” LEGO TMNT and LEGO Spider-Man connect to the Marvel Universe and TMNT Universe. LEGO Michelangelo is in The LEGO Movie.

But all of that is just faith and theory…on to the facts and back to my main point. Another Game Theorists’ video connects the Kingdom Heart games to Doom which also connects to Fortnite and many other games, including ones discussed in their videos about a Ubisoft Universe and the Mike Tyson connection. So, the Disney Universe has many connections to video game universes as well as real-life.

The videos also connect Spider-Man to Star Wars and the Star Wars universe is all one universe. This would bring in any (non-fan made) Star Wars book, comic, and show. Spider-Man then connects us back to the DC Universe.

My main point is that if Disney connected their new properties (and it wouldn’t take much since many of the Fox shows they acquired were already connected through shows like The Simpsons) via xenomorphs, they would have connections through many show universes–thanks to Batman and Scooby-Doo–as well as many game universes. Almost every fictional universe could connect back to Disney. There would be one massive shared universe, including our own, with “one mouse to rule them all.” Disney would be the center of the fictional universe AND the real universe! BWA-HAHAHAHA!!!

Well, except for Five Nights At Freddy’s, like the Game Theorists, I couldn’t connect it either. Unless you want to count the Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles episode “War and Pizza.” Donatello upgrades the pizzeria’s mascot, an animatronic bear (cough, cough), and it comes to life and attacks everyone. But…I doubt it because he used science and not the souls of murdered kids. Wait a minute…Donatello wears a purple bandana. Oh my gosh! Donatello is the Purple Guy!!! Hee, hee…LOL.

It’s not like the Turtles have a connection to anything else in the game, for example the infamous Bite of ’87. Wait, didn’t the original animated series came out in 1987?


Joe Rover eBooks are available at many online retailers, such as Barnes and Noble, Apple Books, Walmart eBooks, and more.

FNAF Doomed? | Tips and Tricks

Recently, I watched the “FNAF IS DOOMED! The Real Truth of Five Nights at Freddy’s” video by Treesicle. I think they might have a point.

If you talk to others within the FNAF or YouTube Gaming “bubble” (as Treesicle called it), they would tell you Five Nights at Freddy’s is an important and game-changing game. But if you talk to people outside that bubble, they tend to look at you weird. “What is FNAF?” they say, “Is that some kind of new disease?”

If you mention Sonic the Hedgehog or Mario, most people would understand who you’re talking about. They probably wouldn’t have a great amount of details about them, but they would at least know they were video game characters.

And the Treesicle crew is right about the YouTube bubble. I’m always hearing about hundreds or thousands of people who buy the merch of people like TheOdd1sOut or It’s Alex Clark, but I never see anyone wearing the merch IRL. About the only time I see anything about YouTube Creators outside of YouTube itself is if they wrote a book.

The video continues to mention why some franchises stay around for decades while others don’t. The video starts out with character development and world building. I have to agree there isn’t much world building to FNAF. If asked by someone what FNAF is, I’d say, “You play as a security guard who’s trying to survive not being killed by pizzeria animatronics.” There isn’t much to say about who the characters are, what they want, the world at large, or anything else.

The Treesicle people continue to talk about FNAF being a mystery. They mention how people love a mystery; but eventually, they want it solved. It’s fun trying to solve a mystery yourself. (Why do you think game theory, or just theory in general, YouTube channels are so popular?) The problem is after a while the audience would like to know if they are right. FNAF has been going on since 2014 with little to no information about “the truth.” By now, people want to know why the animatronics are after security guards, how did they come to life, and so on. There’s a lot of theories on YouTube but not a lot of answers.

Next, they talk about the fact FNAF is a horror game. They show statistics that horror is not that popular of a genre. It makes sense. The first time you see a horror movie or experience a horror game, you’re nervous and jumpy. The first time that ax murderer jumps out from behind the rosebush, you scream, jump, and gasp. The second time, you might jump a little because you forgot about the scare; but by the tenth time, you aren’t reacting at all. It’s hard to be spooked when you know exactly when the surprise is coming.

Another nail in the FNAF coffin is the game’s randomness. There doesn’t seem to be any skill involved. In the Mario games, you can gain platforming skills. You can learn timing on jumps; you can learn strategy (like choosing to toss that turtle shell at the right moment in order to cause a chain reaction). But, in FNAF a lot of it comes down to luck. Is Freddy going to come for you? Is Freddy even going to move that night?

For example, in a Mario level there might be a red warp pipe that takes you to a coin room. If you replay the level, the red warp pipe will still take you to the coin room. You could play the level 80 times and the red warp pipe will take you to the coin room. If it was a random game, one time the red warp pipe takes you to the coin room, but the next time the warp pipe doesn’t work; the next time, it might take you to a lava room.

Finally, the Treesicle team talks about the games and shows that do stick around. Most of them are adventure based. Again, this makes sense. Look at Captain America. What is his goal? Battle evil. There is always going to be some new evil to fight. What is the goal of Ash in Pokémon? Catch ’em all, to become the very best like no one ever was, and make friends. Can he ever do it? Can he really “catch them all”? Can he ever be “the best”? And you can always make new friends. The goals of the franchises that stick around are general enough that the characters never reach their goal, but specific enough that the audience feels like the character is making headway. Captain America will never defeat evil, but he can defeat the Red Skull. Now, look at FNAF. What is the goal? Survive five nights. You did that…now what? It makes for a great standalone game but not a series.

So, my word of advice to any game maker or author or screenwriter is if you want to make a series with staying power, you need a developed world with characters who’s goals are just vague enough that the character will never accomplish them but defined enough that it seems like they are accomplishing them. If you do have a mystery series, you need to solve the mystery relatively quickly (probably within a couple episodes/issues at most) then move on to the next mystery. Look at the mystery book classics, the mystery was solved by the end of the novel. Look at mystery TV shows, the case is usually solved by the end of the episode; they don’t leave it unsolved for five years.


Joe Rover eBooks are available at many online retailers, such as Barnes and Noble, Apple Books, Walmart eBooks, and more.

The first interactive story game based on my book series can be found here.