Gremlins director Joe Dante has had a few pointed comments made about Baby Yoda. He has noted the strong similarities between Gizmo, the hero of his two Gremlins films from the 80s, and The Mandalorian's MVP Baby Yoda AKA Grogu.

Dante was being interviewed by the San Francisco Chronicle about upcoming animated series Gremlins: Secrets of The Mogwai when he said:

“I think the longevity of [the films] is really key to this one character [Gizmo], who is essentially like a baby.

“Which brings me, of course, to the subject of Baby Yoda, who is completely stolen and is just out-and-out copied. Shamelessly, I would think.”

Is that fair? Let us consider the evidence and look at both adorable muppet creatures.

Here's Baby Yoda AKA Grogu:

Now here is Gizmo from Gremlins:

Uh, Joe Dante... I think you will find that Baby Yoda is in fact green. Clearly they are vastly different. Nice try, buddy.

  • FX on Hulu series The Bear has been greenlit for a second season. Not a surprise considering the immediate universal acclaim for what is a very good show. Read: The AV Club
  • Speaking of The Bear, Disney+ in Australia finally sent me a media release (a man can only ask so many times before it gets embarrassing). Could this be a very welcome sign of things to come (ie more media releases?). The release confirmed an Aug 31 release for the show down under. Every episode will be available at launch.
  • September 25 is the return date for Netflix online fan event Tudum. Read: TV Insider
  • UK's Channel 5 and Australia's Network 10, both owned by Paramount Global, are partnering on Riptide, a drama set to be filmed in Victoria. Read: TBI Vision
  • Nintendo is acquiring Dynamo Pictures, a computer animation company. It will form the new Nintendo Pictures and produce TV shows and movies that make use of Nintendo IP. Mama mia! Read: The Verge
  • The always reliable Jason Zinoman has a fantastic profile of Jeneane Garofalo that is well worth a read today. Read: NYT  
  • Dr Death has been renewed for a second season by Peacock. It will explore a different monster of medicine. Read: Deadline
  • Writer Chris Farnell asks a reasonable question: Why aren't warring Star Trek alien races warring about anything important? Read: Den of Geek
  • As Disney seeks to make the most out of paying an obscene amount for the Formula 1 for ESPN, it will launch a Formula 1 documentary series on Disney+ hosted by Keanu Reeves. Read: Variety
  • An Aliens VR game is in the works as part of an effort to ensure I will never sleep again. Read: VR Scout

The Handmaid's Tale returns Sept 14 on Hulu.

Mike Judge's Beavis & Butthead is a new series debuting August 4 on Paramount+.

American Gigolo, a sequel to the movie, debuts on Showtime Sept 9. I'm expecting to see this on Paramount+ in Australia, but the date is still TBA. Yes, I'm very keen to see this one.

The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power debuts Sept 2 on Amazon Prime Video. This is yet another trailer. Expect multiple more.

The Patient debuts Aug 30 on FX. It stars Steve Carell and Domhnall Gleeson.

Kleo debuts Aug 19 on Netflix

After the fall of the Berlin Wall, a woman wants revenge and answers to all her questions. But who is this woman?

Drifting Home debuts Sept 16 on Netflix.

The third feature-length anime film from Studio Colorido, known for "Penguin Highway," which was nominated for Best Animation at the 42nd Japan Academy Film Prize, and "A Whisker Away."

The Bad Seed Returns debuts on Lifetime channel in the US on the US Labor Day.

That's it for today. And the week. Always Be Watching will be back, lurking in your inbox next week. Of course, the bonus Always Be Streaming viewing guide will be in your inbox in just a few hours from now.

In the meantime, stay safe out there. Here in Australia we are just a few weeks away from a BA.4 and BA.5 COVID variant wave. A few million folks are expected to get sick. A good excuse to stay indoors and watch TV for the next few weeks.