Netflix Plays Marco Polo With Show Deals

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Written by Natalie Mootz | Last Updated October 29th, 2019
Natalie has been writing for the web since dinosaurs roamed the earth. Or at least since dinosaurs achieved blogging technology. She's also written for About.com and Joystiq.

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Did you ever play Marco Polo when you were a kid? That's the game where you're in the pool and you made one kid pretend he was blind by keeping his eyes shut. He hollered, "Marco?" and everyone else had to answer back, "Polo!" to give the kid a fair shot at finding you by voice alone. It was kind of like Hide & Seek with higher stakes -- something along the lines of "find your friends so you don't drown." Yeah. Good times.

Marco Polo series sinks with critics

Well, it just so happens that there's an adult version of this "don't drown" game but it's a Netflix original series also called Marco Polo, set in 13th century medieval Asia, and follows the eponymous explorer's travels on the Silk Road. Netflix presumably produced the show as a challenge to the megalith that is Game of Thrones in the "Why-didn't-anyone-in-the-past-ever-shower?" category of sweeping period dramas that show as much skin and blood as possible since, hey, streaming TV is all about what you can't get on broadcast TV, right? So we gotta go out there and give them all seven of George Carlin's words-you-can't-say, but this time with illustrations!

According to Quartz, however, very few viewers may be answering, "Polo!" to Netflix's, "Marco?" if you go by critics' reviews. Which means the Netflix version of the old poolside game may go under if viewers don't respond more favorably than critics have.

More New Movies Inked for Production

According to Variety, Netflix announced at the Sundance Film Festival last week that it has signed a 4-picture deal with Duplass Brothers Productions. The independent filmmakers will create movies that will launch in theaters for a brief time and then quickly be released to stream on Netflix -- a move similar to what Amazon is also planning for 2015.

No More Toying With Hasbro

USA Today is reporting that Netflix is dropping its Hasbro children's programming on February 2nd due to its contract expiration. Canceled shows include, Jem and the Holograms, My Little Pony, Pound Puppies, and two Transformers series.

Maybe that will free up some time to play more games in the pool this summer. Marco Polo, anyone?

Check out our reviews of Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other streaming television services here.

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