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X-Men’s Theme Song Faces Lawsuit Over Similarities to Hungarian Police Drama

X-Men: The Animated Series is accused of stealing its theme song from a Hungarian show in a new lawsuit.
Image: Fox Kids, Hungarian National Television

The theme song to X-Men: The Animated Series is undeniably amazing, but now there are accusations that it was stolen. A Hungarian man has filed a lawsuit against Marvel, Disney, Fox, Apple, Amazon, and others—along with folks from Saban Entertainment—claiming that the theme song was plagiarized.

io9 has looked over the lawsuit, which was filed Monday and first reported by TMZ. Zoltan Krisko, who claims to be managing the estate for Hungarian composer Gyorgy Vukan, says Vukan’s theme song for the 1980s crime drama Linda the Policewoman bears striking similarity to the one created for X-Men: The Animated Series, which debuted almost a decade later in 1992.


You can listen to the theme song below. It’s hard to deny how alike they sound.

Linda the Policewoman, which was created by György Gát and distributed by Hungarian National Television, is described in the lawsuit as a “household name.” That’s not inaccurate. Running from 1983 to 1989, Linda was a popular show that not only brought kung fu fighting styles to Eastern Europe television but also apparently contributed to reshaping gender norms during the Iron Curtain.

Even though Hungary was isolated from much of the Western world during this time, the lawsuit claims the folks behind X-Men’s theme song still associated with Hungarian animators, which could have exposed them to Linda. The suit includes:

During the 1980s, cooperation between film industry professionals from different countries, including from the “Eastern” and “Western” world, existed despite the still standing Iron Curtain. Based on information and belief, as professionals in the animation film industry, Defendants Ronald Wasserman, Haim Saban and Shuki Levy all came in contact with Hungarian professionals in the film industry, and were aware of the famous animation workshop at Pannonia Filmstudio in Hungary, where Hungarian film industry professionals, such as Gyorgy Vukan, were frequent visitors.


Along with the companies, Krisko is suing Ron Wasserman and Shuki Levy, two composers for X-Men: The Animated Series who have each at one point taken credit for the theme song. The suit accuses several companies and folks that produced, distributed, syndicated, or otherwise profited from the show of enabling the copyright infringement of Vukan’s work (a problem that could still continue, since Disney is reportedly considering putting the series on Disney+).

That said, Vukan’s composition wasn’t registered for copyright in the United States until 2017, which is when Krisko said he first learned about X-Men: The Animated Series. Krisko is asking for damages and to award any profits attributable to him, and asking the court to restrain them and others from infringing on the copyright further.


This isn’t the first time the X-Men theme song has been accused of borrowing from other works. Several folks have cited its similarity to Whitney Houston’s “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” which came out in 1990. But unlike this situation, it doesn’t look like that ever resulted in a lawsuit.

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Source: Kotaku.com

The First And Only King Of The Hill Video Game Came Out 19 Years Ago And It’s Boring

King of The Hill was on for from 1997 to 2010, aired over 250 episodes, won two Emmy awards and has been called one of the best-animated shows of all time. Yet unlike The Simpsons, which received many games across multiple platforms, the world was only granted one King Of The Hill video game and it sucked.

For those who haven’t seen King Of The Hill, or KOTH as I like to call it so I don’t have to type it out over and over, the show is set in Arlen, Texas. This is a medium-sized town where Hank Hill and his family live. They have some neighbors and a son, Bobby, who has various friends. Unlike The Simpsons, KOTH was more grounded and got comedy out of situations like anger management, pest control, and infidelity. Hank Hill never went to space or became a zombie or became President of The United States. They just hung around Arlen, mostly, drinking beers and dealing with life, love, failure, and work.

This more grounded and slower pace might have been one of the main reasons the show never got many games based on it. And it also might explain why the first and only major game to star Hank Hill and the gang was a boring point and click adventure and puzzle game for the PC.

Simply named King Of The Hill, the KOTH video game was released in November 2000 for PC and Mac. It was developed by Flying Tiger Development, a company who is still around and helped port Kerbal Space Program to consoles not long ago. They also made DVD menus for Disney films.

There isn’t a lot of information floating around on the web about this game and not many people seem to have played it and even fewer have uploaded footage of it. Luckily, one YouTuber has uploaded a full let’s play of the game so we can all see what this thing was.

The game is two small adventures packaged together, with some websites referring to the package as “King Of The Hill: Block Party,” though the official developer website doesn’t refer to the game by this title. Anyways, the two stories included in the game are Hootenanny and Texas Hutnin’.

In Hootenanny you play as a new resident that just moved on to the street that Hank Hill and the gang live on. You meet them while taking out the trash and they invite you to the block party. The party consists of… a collection of bad mini-games. And like any good and fun party, each activity is rigorously scheduled. And this schedule isn’t just background detail, no, you actually have to wait different amounts of time before you can play each game. Luckily, you don’t have to wait in real time for hours, but it is still wild to me that this game is mostly just checking your in-game digital watch, waiting for the next mini-game to start.

The actual games themselves are bad and consist of stuff like a scavenger hunt in an empty house and bean bag tossing game. It seems Hank and Peggy Hill suck at throwing parties. Also, for some reason, everyone in this game is a close-talker and is ALWAYS getting right in your face to talk to you. They also have dead eyes that don’t blink or move enough.

Screenshot: Vic’s Video Game Collection (YouTube)

The other story included in the game, Texas Huntin’, is all about you and the gang going out hunting. You help pick where to hunt, what to bring and then once you arrive the game actually gives you a gun and lets you shoot some stuff. The gunplay is stiff and choppy, but hey, it beats throwing bean bags at a wall.

Unlike the block party story, Texas Huntin’ is mostly set in the wilderness and fields of Texas. So you mostly sit around, waiting for animals, missing shots and waiting some more. Which is an accurate recreation of hunting, but it doesn’t make for a very fun video game.

Screenshot: Vic’s Video Game Collection (YouTube)

King Of The Hill, the video game not the cartoon, looks really nice and has all the original voice actors. I even laughed at some of the writing, which feels ripped right out of the show.

For a nearly 20-year-old game, it also has nice animation and art. Altogether, the game feels like I’m watching an episode of the series. Sadly, all this effort is wasted on a boring mini-game collection. And over two decades later, this is still the only main King Of The Hill game ever made.

Some KOTH characters appear in the free-to-play Animation Showdown, which is a card game featuring various animated characters including Bender, Bob Belcher, and Peter Griffin. It’s a mostly fine game, but Hank, Peggy, and Bobby deserve much better.

With over 13 years of stories and characters, there is plenty of stuff to work with to create a game based on King Of The Hill that is more exciting than the one we got in 2000. What about a game based on the video game Hank becomes addicted to in Grand Theft Arlen? Or maybe a game all about Hank Hill trying to fix his truck but people keep interrupting him? Honestly, almost anything would be better than the one boring PC game we got two decades ago.

With rumors that the show might return, we might get another game starring the king of propane and propane accessories. And while I’m wishing for video games based on TV shows I love, where’s my Bob’s Burgers video game? And no, that digital pinball game doesn’t count.

Source: Kotaku.com

Catwoman Will Be Played By a Different Actress in the Gotham Season Finale

Camren Bicondova as Catwoman.
Image: Fox

For the past five bonkers seasons, Camren Bicondova and her incredible hair have played Selina Kyle on Gotham. But for the last episode, airing next week, she’s being replaced.

The decision, apparently, was made by Bicondova herself, as she explained on social media in a letter meant both as an announcement and a farewell to fans of the Batman-adjacent series.

Apparently, the episode features a ten-year time skip, and Bicondova didn’t feel it was appropriate for her to play a decade-older version of the iconic cat burglar. Thus, the decision was made to recast Catwoman as Lili Simmons (Westworld, The Purge).

Bicondova emphasizes in the letter that this was her decision, and that she’s very excited to see Simmons take up the reins of an older Kyle.

The final episode of Gotham airs this Thursday, April 25th, on Fox.

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Source: Kotaku.com

YouTuber Discovers Strange Things Hidden In The Simpsons: Hit & Run 

Boundary Break’s latest video is all about the fan-favorite game The Simpsons: Hit & Run and some of the weird things hiding outside the game world. Like the channel’s previous episode about LEGO Star Wars, this episode also includes a former developer on the game explaining some of the weirder discoveries.

The Simpsons: Hit & Run was an open-world game, not unlike Grand Theft Auto, released back in 2003. Using camera hacks, Boundary Break was able to find some really interesting secrets hiding just below the surface.

For example, every single switch in the game has a small metal box attached to the back of the switch. This box is unable to be seen by the player during gameplay. One of the lead programmers on the game, Cary Brisebois, explained what these boxes are. They are basically leftovers from when the switches were first being created.

Screenshot: Boundary Break (YouTube)

One of the first areas that the developers worked on was the power plant section of the game. The metal textures on the box are a remnant of when these switches were just being used in this area. Because players can’t see the metal behind the switch when they were used in other parts of the world the devs didn’t change the texture.

My favorite discoveries are both found in a coastal area of The Simpsons: Hit & Run. Here you can find strange boxes floating under the ocean and ground. These were simply placeholders. The devs wanted to include the famous three-eyed fishes in the water, but due to time restrictions and issues with FOX, they couldn’t include the famous fish. The placeholders were never removed either.

Screenshot: Boundary Break (YouTube)

In that same area, Boundary Break found underground geometry which is unused and not fully textured. Sometimes this is a sign that developers had plans to include more playable areas and had to stop working on them for various reasons. But in this case, the leftover assets are most likely due to an artist accidentally selecting some of the world in Maya, a 3D software program, and nobody catching this mistake.

The whole video is worth watching and the intro featuring a Troy Mclure cameo and soundalike providing the voice is impressive.

Source: Kotaku.com

The Simpsons Producers Worked With Riot Games On An Upcoming Esports Episode

Image: FOX

Bart Simpson is entering the world of esports in an upcoming episode of The Simpsons. The staff behind The Simpsons even talked to Riot Games to help make the episode feel more “authentic.”

In the episode, titled “E My Sports”, Bart becomes addicted to an online game called “Conflict of Enemies.” The fake game seems to be a parody of popular esports games like League of Legends and DOTA 2. Simpsons producer Al Jean tweeted a preview of the episode, revealing the name of the game and how it will look in the episode.

According to tweets from esports consultant Rod Breslau, The Simpsons staff worked with Riot Games to make sure they presented an“accurate representation of video games in the episode.” What does that actually mean? I don’t know and I’m going to guess that accurate representation of video games will most likely mean a few jokes that most folks who are still watching the show won’t get. Prepare for jokes about Bart not jungling properly!

In some promotional art of the episode, we can see that Bart is playing games at a dirty desk and has a mustache. Which I really don’t understand. Bart is supposed to be 10 years old. Do many 10-year-olds grow mustaches? This facial hair isn’t surprising, the show has long treated Bart like a teenager when they need to, even if it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Maybe one day they will let you grow up Bart. One day.

The episode will air on Sunday, March 17 on FOX.

Source: Kotaku.com