The groundbreaking new unscripted drama series Becoming Us (formerly known as "My Transparent Life") centers on a teenager named Ben who is learning to live with his dad becoming a woman. The series will follow Ben, his family and his friends as they support one another through this unexpected journey and navigate their new world with Charlie now living as Carly. The show is a generational story of a loving family and circle of friends supporting one another through this unfamiliar situation.
Runtime: 60 minutes
Becoming Us - The Last of Us - Netflix
The Last of Us is an action-adventure game developed by Naughty Dog and published by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was released for the PlayStation 3 worldwide on June 14, 2013. Players control Joel, a smuggler tasked with escorting a teenage girl named Ellie across a post-apocalyptic United States. The Last of Us is played from a third-person perspective; players use firearms and improvised weapons, and can use stealth to defend against hostile humans and cannibalistic creatures infected by a mutated strain of the Cordyceps fungus. In the game's online multiplayer mode, up to eight players engage in cooperative and competitive gameplay. Development of The Last of Us began in 2009, soon after the release of Naughty Dog's previous game, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. The relationship between Joel and Ellie became the central focus of the game, with all other elements developed around it. Actors Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson portrayed Joel and Ellie respectively through voice and motion capture, and assisted creative director Neil Druckmann with the development of the characters and story. The original score was composed and performed by Gustavo Santaolalla. Following its announcement in December 2011, The Last of Us was widely anticipated. Upon release, it received universal acclaim, with praise directed at its narrative, gameplay, visual and sound design, characterization, and depiction of female characters. The Last of Us became one of the best-selling games on the PlayStation 3, selling over 1.3 million units in its first week and 17 million by April 2018. It won year-end accolades, including multiple Game of the Year awards from several gaming publications, critics, and game award ceremonies, making it one of the most awarded games in history, and is considered one of the greatest video games of all time. After the game's release, Naughty Dog released several downloadable content additions; The Last of Us: Left Behind adds a single-player campaign following Ellie and her best friend Riley. An enhanced edition of the original game, The Last of Us Remastered, was released for the PlayStation 4 in July 2014. A sequel, The Last of Us Part II, was announced in December 2016.
Becoming Us - Critical response - Netflix
The game's visual features were commended by many reviewers. The art design was lauded as “outstanding” by Computer and Video Games' Kelly, and “jaw-dropping” by Eurogamer's Welsh. In contrast, Mc Shea of GameSpot identified the visual representation of the post-apocalyptic world was “mundane”, having been portrayed various times previously. The game's graphics have been frequently named by critics as the best for a PlayStation 3 game, with Helgeson of Game Informer naming them “unmatched in console gaming” and Moriarty of IGN stating that they contribute to the realism. Destructoid's Sterling wrote that game was visually impressive but that technical issues, such as some “muddy and basic” textures found early in the game, left a negative impact on the visuals. The world and environments of the game drew acclaim from many reviewers. Kelly of Computer and Video Games stated that the environments are “large, detailed, and littered with secrets”, adding that The Last of Us “masks” its linearity successfully. Edge repeated similar remarks, writing that the level design serves the story appropriately. Helgeson of Game Informer wrote that the world “effectively and gorgeously [conveys] the loneliness” of the story. IGN's Moriarty appreciated the added design elements placed around the game world, such as the hidden notes and letters. Reviewers praised the use of sound in The Last of Us. Eurogamer's Welsh felt that the sound design was significantly better than in other games, while Game Informer's Helgeson dubbed it “amazing”. Mc Shea of GameSpot stated that the audio added to the effect of the gameplay, particularly when hiding from enemies. Kelly of Computer and Video Games found that the environmental audio positively impacted gameplay, and that Gustavo Santaolalla's score was “sparse and delicate”. Both Game Informer's Helgeson and Destructoid's Sterling called the score “haunting”, with the latter finding that it complements the gameplay. The graphic depiction of violence in The Last of Us generated substantial commentary from critics. Engadget writer Ben Gilbert found the game's persistent focus on combat was “a necessary evil to lead the game's fragile protagonist duo to safety”, as opposed to being used as a method to achieve objectives. Kotaku's Kirk Hamilton wrote that the violence was “heavy, consequential and necessary”, as opposed to gratuitous. USGamer's Anthony John Agnello wrote that the game consistently reinforces the negativity associated with violence, intentionally making players feel uncomfortable while in violent combat. He stated that the deaths within the game were not unnecessary or unjustified, making the story more powerful. Kelly of Computer and Video Games stated that, despite the “incredibly brutal” combat, the violence never felt gratuitous. Eurogamer's Welsh echoed similar remarks, stating that the violence is not “desensitized or mindless”. Matt Helgeson of Game Informer observed that the game's violence leads to players questioning the morality of their choices. Joystiq's Mitchell wrote that the violence is “designed to be uncomfortable”, stating that it contributes to Joel's character. Prior to the release of the game, Keith Stuart of The Guardian wrote that the acceptability of the violence would depend on its context within the game. Many critics discussed the game's depiction of female characters. Jason Killingsworth of Edge praised its lack of sexualized female characters, writing that it “offers a refreshing antidote to the sexism and regressive gender attitudes of most blockbuster videogames”. Eurogamer's Ellie Gibson praised Ellie as “sometimes strong, sometimes vulnerable, but never a cliché”. She felt that Ellie is initially established as a “damsel in distress”, but that this concept is subverted. GameSpot's Carolyn Petit praised the female characters as morally conflicted and sympathetic, but wrote that gender in video games should be evaluated “based on their actual merits, not in relation to other games”. Chris Suellentrop of The New York Times acknowledged that Ellie was a likable and “sometimes powerful” character, but argued that The Last of Us is “actually the story of Joel”, stating that it's “another video game by men, for men and about men”. The Last of Us was also praised for its depiction of LGBT characters. Sam Einhorn of GayGamer.net felt that the revelation of Bill's sexuality “added to his character ... without really tokenizing him”. American organization GLAAD named Bill one of the “most intriguing new LGBT characters of 2013”, calling him “deeply flawed but wholly unique”. A kiss between two female characters in Left Behind was met with positive reactions.
The Last of Us received critical acclaim. Review aggregator website Metacritic calculated an average score of 95 out of 100, indicating “universal acclaim”, based on 98 reviews. It is the fifth-highest rated PlayStation 3 game on Metacritic. Reviewers praised the character development, story and subtext, visual and sound design, and depiction of female and LGBT characters. The game is considered one of the most significant titles of the seventh generation of video games, and has been included among the greatest video games of all time. Colin Moriarty of IGN called The Last of Us “a masterpiece” and “PlayStation 3's best exclusive”, and Edge considered it “the most riveting, emotionally resonant story-driven epic” of the console generation. Oli Welsh of Eurogamer wrote that it is “a beacon of hope” for the survival horror genre; Andy Kelly of Computer and Video Games declared it “Naughty Dog's finest moment”. Kelly of Computer and Video Games found the story memorable, and IGN's Moriarty named it one of the game's standout features. PlayStation Official Magazine's David Meikleham wrote that the pacing contributed to the improvement of the story, stating that there is “a real sense of time elapsed and journey traveled along every step of the way”, and Destructoid's Jim Sterling lauded the game's suspenseful moments. Richard Mitchell of Joystiq found that the narrative improved the character relationships. The characters—particularly the relationship between Joel and Ellie—received acclaim. Matt Helgeson of Game Informer wrote that the relationship felt identifiable, naming it “poignant” and “well-drawn”. Eurogamer's Welsh wrote that the characters were developed with “real patience and skill”, appreciating their emotional value, and Joystiq's Mitchell found the relationship “genuine” and emotional. PlayStation Official Magazine's Meikleham named Joel and Ellie the best characters of any PlayStation 3 game, while IGN's Moriarty identified it as a highlight of the game. Kelly of Computer and Video Games named the characters “richly painted”, feeling invested in their stories. Philip Kollar of Polygon felt that Ellie was believable, making it easier to develop a connection to her, and that the relationship between the characters was assisted by the game's optional conversations. The character performances also received praise, with Edge and Eurogamer's Welsh noting that the script improved as a result. Many reviewers found the game's combat a refreshing difference from other games. Game Informer's Helgeson appreciated the vulnerability during fights, while Kelly of Computer and Video Games enjoyed the variety in approaching the combat. IGN's Moriarty felt that the crafting system assisted the combat, and that the latter contributed to the narrative's emotional value, adding that enemies feel “human”. Joystiq's Mitchell reiterated similar comments, stating that the combat “piles death upon death on Joel's hands”. Welsh of Eurogamer found the suspenseful and threatening encounters added positively to the gameplay. Tom Mc Shea of GameSpot wrote that the artificial intelligence negatively affected the combat, with enemies often ignoring players' companions. Polygon's Kollar felt that the combat was unfair, especially when fighting the Infected.
Becoming Us - References - Netflix