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WIRE Buzz: Netflix sips Cuphead series; The Society Season 2; more

By Josh Weiss

Another WIRE Buzz is upon us, folks! Today, we've got development updates on Netflix, which just ordered a Cuphead show and gave the greenlight to Season 2 of The Society. Lastly, a big name associated with The Little Mermaid just came out in defense of Halle Bailey's casting for the remake.

Netflix is sipping from the chalice of Studio MDHR with an animated comedy series based on Cuphead, the developer's wildly creative indie game from 2017. A loving homage to the rubber hose animation of the 1930s and '40s, the award-winning title follows Cuphead and Mugman (modeled after ordinary drinking vessels), who must collect a number of souls on behalf of the Devil after losing big at his casino.

"The new series will expand on the characters and world of Cuphead, with an animation style inspired by the classic Fleischer cartoons from the 1930s," reads the official release from Netflix. "The character-driven comedy follows the unique misadventures of the impulsive Cuphead and his cautious but easily swayed brother Mugman. Through their many misadventures across their surreal home of the Inkwell Isles, they’ve always got one another’s backs."

The Cuphead Show! is a joint production between Netflix and King Features Syndicate. Dave Wasson (Mickey Mouse Shorts) and Cosmo Segurson (Rocko’s Modern Life: Static Cling) are attached as executive producers.

To date, the Cuphead game has sold over 4 million copies all over the world. It's also been on the receiving end of more than 20 gaming awards.

Netflix has renewed The Society for a second season, which will debut sometime in 2020. Members of the show's cast made the announcement in a special video.

The "Lost meets Lord of the Flies" premise centers on a group of privileged teenagers who must found a society from scratch after they find themselves in a replica of their wealthy New England town with no adults and no way of escape. As you might guess, the results are less than perfect.

Chris Keyser will return as showrunner and executive producer. Marc Webb (The Amazing Spider-Man) will also reprise his duties of executive producer.

Jodi Benson, the OG voice of Ariel in Disney's The Little Mermaid, reportedly came to the defense of Halle Bailey (Grown-ish), who was cast in the central role of Rob Marshall's live-action remake of the 1989 classic.

“The most important thing is to tell the story. And we have, as a family, we have raised our children, and for ourselves, that we don’t see anything that’s different on the outside,” Benson said (via at Florida's Supercon over the weekend. “I think that the spirit of a character is what really matters. What you bring to the table in a character as far as their heart, and their spirit, is what really counts ... We need to be storytellers. And no matter what we look like on the outside, no matter our race, our nation, the color of our skin, our dialect, whether I’m tall or thin, whether I’m overweight or underweight, or my hair is whatever color, we really need to tell the story."

Jodi Benson and Halle Bailey

The casting of Bailey came under fire from certain corners of the Internet, simply because the actor/singer is black and doesn't resemble the white-skinned, red-haired character from the animated movie. Freeform (a family-oriented networked owned by Disney) posted a lengthy impassioned defense of Bailey on Instagram.

Benson recently voiced Ariel for Ralph Breaks the Internet. Production on The Little Mermaid remake will begin early next year.