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Netflix users can now hide their viewing history

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Sharing a Netflix account with a friend—or “borrowing” theirs—and looking for a way to avoid awkward discussions about that season of Gossip Girl you watched five times? Good news: The streaming service will now let you hide your viewing activity.

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Burning questions about 'Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor,' answered

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The world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings hasn’t left the same mark on the video game medium that it has in film, though many attempts have been made. The Battle for Middle-earth strategy games? Good, but the series lasted for only a few years. The Rings Lego games? Also fun, but the Middle-earth setting is just one of several major properties to be Legoized. Even the games connected to the original trilogy films have their upsides but were never critical darlings.

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor hopes to change that. The game has received plenty of buzz leading up to its release on Sept. 30, promising an original story in Tolkien’s world that explores the deep lore while innovating on familiar gameplay mechanics.

So what exactly sets this adventure apart, and will it make Mordor the one game to rule them all—or at least rule the fall season? That question will be answered when the game debuts later this month, but there are plenty more worth asking about why Mordor is worth Rings fans’—and newcomers’—time. Here are answers to some swirling questions about the game, which should give players all they need to know going into the game’s launch.

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Angela Lansbury is taking her 'Blithe Spirit' on a North American tour

Angela Lansbury is taking her Tony-winning performance in Noël Coward’s Blithe Spirit on the road. The actress will be playing the medium Madame Arcati in a North American tour of the play, which will kick off in December at Los Angeles’ Ahmanson Theatre. The run will close in March at D.C.’s National Theatre, a place of historical significance for Lansbury, since it marked the site of the 1957 pre-Broadway tryout for her Broadway debut, Hotel Paradiso. Lansbury won one of her five Tonys for her work as Arcati in 2009, and returned to the role earlier this year for a production on London’s West End. Michael Blakemore, who directed both productions, will helm the tour as well, and Lansbury will be joined by some of her previous cast mates, including Downton Abbey‘s Charles Edwards, who appeared with Lansbury in London.

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Why everyone needs to pay closer attention to the video game industry

Monday morning, Microsoft announced it was purchasing Swedish game development studio Mojang AB, makers of the staggeringly popular multi-platform video game Minecraftfor $2.4 billion. It’s a massive deal, with huge implications. Talk of the deal had been swirling for a week, and the rumored acquisition was a genuine surprise to the games and tech industry; Bloomberg stated that the purchase would be the biggest deal Microsoft has made since CEO Satya Nadella replaced Steve Ballmer as the company’s top executive three years ago.

But the mainstream press struggled to fathom why one of the biggest names in tech would want Mojang, at least for such an enormous price. In keeping with a reporting trend that follows any major happening in the games industry, there was a layer of incredulity to the proceedings.

There shouldn’t have been.

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Wendy Williams makes good on promise to actually eat crow on talk show

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Generally, a figure of speech is just that–speech. Words. Not real actions. But on The Wendy Williams Show today, host Wendy Williams made good on an old saying by literally eating crow. READ FULL STORY

The hype train derailed: EW's 'Destiny' journal, pt. 3

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Destiny has been out nearly a week now, and EW is putting the futuristic shared-world shooter through the paces in our ongoing journal. This is the third entry; read the preceding posts from Joshua Rivera and Jonathon Dornbush.

Big picture, Destiny doesn’t live up to the hype. How could it? Bungie’s first non-Halo game since 2001 and first title with mega-publisher Activision cost a reported $500 million to develop and market (those gargantuan wraparound ads in Times Square can’t be cheap). The studio promised great things, so naturally expectations were sky-high. Alas, add it to the list of much-hyped 2014 releases such as Titanfall, Infamous: Second Son and Watch Dogs that have disappointed by merely being good, not great. (Well, except for Watch Dogs, which doesn’t even qualify for “good.”) The PS4 and Xbox One have been out for nearly a year, and people are still looking for a reason to justify dropping $400–$500 on a new system. Destiny probably isn’t it. After all, it’s available on previous generation hardware, and while it doesn’t look as pretty, it plays the same. So it doesn’t live up to the massive hype.

But my bigger concern is that it doesn’t even live up to Bungie’s Halo games. READ FULL STORY

Microsoft announces acquisition of 'Minecraft' developer

Mojang may not be a household name, but the game developer’s title Minecraft is. The game that allows users to build just about anything they can imagine has attracted more than 100 million players and is available on just about every platform imaginable, from Windows PC to PlayStation 3 to iOS devices.

It’s now one of the most popular games to play on the Xbox 360, and Microsoft took note of the game’s success. The company announced today it will acquire Mojang and the Minecraft franchise for $2.5 billion.

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'American Psycho' musical canceled at Second Stage

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The American Psycho musical will not have an off-Broadway run at Second Stage Theatre after all. Though it was scheduled for a run in 2015, Second Stage announced Friday it would not be producing the show, which premiered in London. “We are disappointed that we will not be producing American Psycho this season, but the rights holders, Act 4 Entertainment, have decided to not move forward with the production at Second Stage,” Artistic Director Carole Rothman said in a statement. “We will be announcing a new production in its place in the coming weeks.”

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Jennifer Lawrence will co-chair the Met Gala

Jennifer Lawrence once said, “I really would not call myself a fashion icon. I would call myself somebody who gets dressed by professionals. [It's like], ‘Dance, monkey, dance’ right on the red carpet.’ I would call me more of a monkey.” But even if she hasn’t always embraced fashion, the fashion world has certainly embraced her: the star will be one of the co-chairs of this year’s Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Benefit.

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I get by with a little help from my friends: EW's 'Destiny' journal, pt. 2

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Destiny is, by most metrics, the biggest video game of the year. If you’ve read our primer, you know why it’s a big deal. But is it any good?

EW will be investigating that question in an ongoing Destiny journal. This post is the second entry—read the first entry from Joshua Rivera here, and continue on for more thoughts on Bungie’s new shooter.

9.12.14: To the beta and back again

I’m of two minds in my experience with Destiny so far. So far, I’ve had an absolute blast with the minute-to-minute gameplay. Bungie knows how to make a shooter, and whether in story missions or competitive matches, the gunplay shines through. But as I journeyed through the game’s story missions on Earth, levels I had already played in the beta, demonstrated the one major sin I was worried Destiny would commit in the early going—the lack of a driving force foryour Guardian. READ FULL STORY

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