Plugged In exists to shine a light on the world of popular entertainment while giving you and your family the essential tools you need to understand, navigate and impact the culture in which we live. Through reviews, articles and discussions, we want to spark intellectual thought, spiritual growth and a desire to follow the command of Colossians 2:8: "See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ."


Family uses Plugged In as a ‘significant compass’

"I am at a loss for words to adequately express how much it means to my husband and me to know that there is an organization like Focus that is rooting for us. Just today I was reading Psalm 37 and thinking about how your ministry provides ways to 'dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.' We have two teenagers and an 8-year-old in our household...Plugged In has become a significant compass for our family. All three of our kids are dedicated to their walk with Christ but they still encounter challenges. Thanks for all of your research and persistence in helping us navigate through stormy waters."

Plugged In helps college student stand-up for his belief

"Thanks for the great job you do in posting movie and television reviews online. I’m a college freshman and I recently had a confrontational disagreement with my English professor regarding an R-rated film. It is her favorite movie and she wanted to show it in class. I went to your Web site to research the film’s content. Although I had not seen the movie myself, I was able to make an educated argument against it based on the concerns you outlined. The prof said that she was impressed by my stand and decided to poll the whole class and give us a choice. We overwhelmingly voted to watch a G-rated movie instead! I’ve learned that I can trust your site and I will be using it a lot in the future.”

Plugged In brings ‘Sanity and Order’ to Non-believer

“Even though I don’t consider myself a Christian, I find your Plugged In Web site useful and thought-provoking. No one reviews movies like you do. Instead of being judgmental, you put entertainment ‘on trial.’ After presenting the evidence, you allow the jury of your readers to decide for themselves what they should do. In my opinion, you bring sanity and order to the wild world of modern day entertainment. Keep up the good work!”

Mom thinks Plugged In is the ‘BEST Christian media review site’

"Our family doesn't go to the movies until we go online and check out your assessment of a given film. I think this is the BEST Christian media review website that I've found, and I recommend it to my family and friends. Keep up the good work!"


Our hope is that whether you're a parent, youth leader or teen, the information and tools at Plugged In will help you and your family make appropriate media decisions. We are privileged to do the work we do, and are continually thankful for the generosity and support from you, our loyal readers, listeners and friends.

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Game Review

This is a prequel that shows the shape of how Arkham came to be. It's not a funny tale ... but it does have a Joker.

Batty Beginnings
The game jumps back to a day when a much younger Batman was winging his way in and out of the shadows to take down common criminals. After about two years of on-the-job training he's mastered all his signature moves, purchased all the high-tech gear and vehicles needed, and already put millions into the full renovation of a cave beneath his stately manor. The Dark Knight is now good enough at his new gig that the bad guys decide it's time to strike back at their shadow-loving adversary.

A baddie named the Black Mask puts a $50 million bounty on the Dark Knight's pointy-eared head. And a cavalcade of assassins―including Killer Croc, Deathstroke, Firefly, Copperhead, Sheba and even Bane―all come storming into Gotham to claim the prize.

And the Joker? Well, he's ready to kill everyone and anyone whether there's a reward or not. So it's time for formal introductions to be made, set to commence on a dark and snowy Christmas Eve: Joker, meet Batman. Batman, meet Joker, with acknowledgements made to his parade of pathological pals.

Swing! Solve! Smack!
From a gameplay perspective, Arkham Origins has a very similar feel to its predecessors ( Arkham Asylum and Arkham City). Our black-cowled hero can grapple-hook up and over obstacles, swing stealthily from high-perched cover to cover and snap his cape into wing form to glide over the wintery cityscape. We're given an improved version of Detective Mode that helps Batman search a crime scene for clues in the form of small crime-puzzle pieces around a burnt-out room or rubble-strewn street. (You use them to reconstruct a visual playback of a criminal's actions or a victim's misfortune.)

And, of course, with all the swooping, spying and puzzle-solving, there are quite a few high-flying third-person smackdowns too. The game features a well-designed combat system of timed attack and defense moves that players use when wading into a crowd of bad guys. (Which happens quite often since heavily muscled thugs and heavily armed crooked cops are on every rooftop and corner.)

Batman's brand of beat-'em-up―whether delivered in the form of a surprise attack from a dark corner or vent, or a leap down from a nearby rooftop―is very martial arts-focused. And that breeds full-body flips, head-slams, armored fist jabs to the face, and an occasional snapped bone or two. Add in well-timed grappling-hook pulls, batarang chucks and some later-game electro-charged blasts, and the impressive choreographed brawl becomes wince-worthy, sometimes even torturous.

The Darkness of Dementia
Also like past games, Batman's brutal manhandlings pale in comparison to his villainous foes' handiwork. This cast of crazies is kept in check by the game's T rating, but only barely. We peer into a creepy, dark world packed with pistol-whip beatings, torture (a lit cigarette jammed in someone's eye, for instance), electrocutions, massive explosions and murder victims getting shot, stabbed, having their necks snapped, and being burned and blown back through a brick wall by improvised explosives.

Batman has long been committed to never taking a life, but even in that category, this game pushes the limits. The Joker sets up a no-win challenge where he or another villain must die. And for a moment it appears that the beleaguered rookie Batman does kill.

The abovementioned T rating also takes a hit from illegal narcotics, scantily clad buxom females and foul-mouthed cretins. While Batman is utterly focused and unflappable, killers, gang members and crooked cops are all too ready to screech out their anger with language that includes "d‑‑n," "h‑‑‑," "b‑‑ch," "a‑‑" and "b‑‑tard."

Suffice it to say that by game's end it's more than merely evident why Gotham does indeed need an Arkham Asylum to hold its newest brand of lethal lunatics.

Positive Elements

Spiritual Content

Sexual Content

Violent Content

Crude or Profane Language

Drug and Alcohol Content

Other Negative Elements


Pro-social Content

Objectionable Content

Summary Advisory

Plot Summary

Christian Beliefs

Other Belief Systems

Authority Roles



Discussion Topics

Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews



Readability Age Range







Record Label


Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii U, Wii, PC


Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment


October 25, 2013

On Video

Year Published



Bob Hoose

We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.

Get weekly e-news, Culture Clips & more!